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a kind gift from a gentleman I met once. Login/Join 
hello darkness
my old friend
Picture of gw3971
posted
I recently met my girlfriends grandfather. He is 88 years old and his daughter has been his sole caretaker. I spent an hour with him talking about fishing, hunting and politics. Shortly after we met he went on hospice care and was making arrangements for his death. He passed on the 1st of February.

Last night we were invited to his home for a superbowl get together prior to his funeral. My girlfriends mother has been managing his affairs. She left for a moment and returned carrying an old rifle with a bayonet attached. She handed the rifle to me and told me that her father wanted me to have this rifle. She added that she has a son who is a felon and on probation so the gun can't be in her house. She added that her father wanted me to have the rifle and she was going to make it happen as it was one of his last requests.

I know nothing of old rifles or how to take care of them. I refused the gift as it belongs in the family but his caretaker would have none of that. She got pretty angry and stated she was just doing what her father wanted. She demanded I take the gun as she wanted it out of the house. I made several other suggestions including selling it for them or even just holding it for them in case someone else in their family ever wanted it. I showed them some value of the guns by showing them She refused and I left with the rifle.

Anyway... the rifle is a Lee Enfield with a bayonet. I have little information about the rifle and thought the many knowledgeable members here could tell me something of the weapon and what I have to do to take care of it. Any information on the rifle would be helpful. The family seemed interested in the history of the rifle after I told them what little i knew of the gun. Some of the markings have worn off I think. Any advice on how to take care of this rifle would be appreciated.

















 
Posts: 6372 | Location: West Jordan, Utah | Registered: June 19, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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I think what you have is a Short Magazine Lee Enfield (SMLE) No.1 Mk. III (not to be confused with the Mk. III*) with a Pattern 1907 sword bayonet.

It should be chambered in .303 British unless if was altered, which doesn't seem to be the case.

I would do nothing to it (don't clean it,) and bring it to a gunsmith who knows something about older rifles.

If it were me, I would thank the family profusely for the nice memento and promise to take exceedingly good care of it.
 
Posts: 2981 | Location: Texas | Registered: June 20, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Nice gift! As NikonUser stated, a SMLE MkIII; an early one, judging by the magazine cutoff and the volley sights.
 
Posts: 393 | Registered: January 17, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Mensch
Picture of kz1000
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It still has the volley sight (on left side of stock & sticking out by the rear sight). Most lost them at refurb. Rare specimen.


------------------------------------------------------------------------
"Yidn, shreibt un fershreibt"

"The Nazis entered this war under the rather childish delusion that they were going to bomb everyone else, and nobody was going to bomb them. At Rotterdam, London, Warsaw and half a hundred other places, they put their rather naive theory into operation. They sowed the wind, and now they are going to reap the whirlwind."
-Bomber Harris
 
Posts: 15122 | Location: Ivorydale | Registered: January 21, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Wait, what?
Picture of gearhounds
posted Hide Post
That may very well be WWII bring back. I would sit down with the gentleman and ask some questions if he's up for it.




I'm very discreet. I have no code of ethics. I will kill anyone, anywhere. Children, animals, old people, doesn't matter. I just love killing.
Krombopulos Michael
 
Posts: 10645 | Location: Martinsburg WV | Registered: April 02, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Bookers Bourbon
and a good cigar
Picture of Johnny 3eagles
posted Hide Post
Sorry for the passing of another member of the greatest generation and condolences to your girlfriend s family.



I may not be that good looking, or athletic, or funny, or talented, or smart...
Shoot, I forgot where I was going with this, but I do know that I love bacon.

 
Posts: 4249 | Location: Arkansas  | Registered: November 06, 2010Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by gearhounds:
That may very well be WWII bring back. I would sit down with the gentleman and ask some questions if he's up for it.


It may actually be a WWI bring back. Also, the OP said the gentleman had sadly, passed away on February 1.
 
Posts: 2981 | Location: Texas | Registered: June 20, 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Mensch
Picture of kz1000
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It's dated 1907. It could be surplus sold here after WWII. I would look for British export proofmarks.



------------------------------------------------------------------------
"Yidn, shreibt un fershreibt"

"The Nazis entered this war under the rather childish delusion that they were going to bomb everyone else, and nobody was going to bomb them. At Rotterdam, London, Warsaw and half a hundred other places, they put their rather naive theory into operation. They sowed the wind, and now they are going to reap the whirlwind."
-Bomber Harris
 
Posts: 15122 | Location: Ivorydale | Registered: January 21, 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Page late and a dollar short
posted Hide Post
quote:
If it were me, I would thank the family profusely for the nice memento and promise to take exceedingly good care of it.


I agree with this with a P.S. If something ever happens between you and your girlfriend I would offer it back to her or another family member though, that would only be right at least in my viewpoint.


Ignorance is a powerful tool if applied at the right time, even, usually, surpassing knowledge(E.J.Potter, A.K.A. The Michigan Madman)
 
Posts: 5863 | Location: Livingston County Michigan USA | Registered: August 11, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Not really from Vienna
Picture of arfmel
posted Hide Post
1. Thank the nice lady for the gift
2. Wipe the metal down with some gun oil on a rag
3. Put the rifle in a breatheable case (I like Bore-Stores)
4. Keep it as a remembrance of an old man who liked the cut of your jib

I’d probably figure out for sure if it’s still chambered in .303 British, and if it is, I’d shoot it every so often.




 
Posts: 24347 | Location: Young American Teen Club | Registered: January 30, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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quote:
Originally posted by arfmel:
1. Thank the nice lady for the gift
2. Wipe the metal down with some gun oil on a rag
3. Put the rifle in a breatheable case (I like Bore-Stores)
4. Keep it as a remembrance of an old man who liked the cut of your jib

I’d probably figure out for sure if it’s still chambered in .303 British, and if it is, I’d shoot it every so often.


This. My Dad has a couple in the safe with different configurations. Even has a 410 shotgun SMLE. They meant something to Dad and so they mean something to me now. I agree, make sure it's safe and shoot it sometimes.
My neighbor, before he passed gave me his Ruger 44 carbine which he hunted with for years. I was very flattered. My daughter took a forkhorn last year with that carbine. I wouldn't trade it now.


"The days are stacked against what we think we are." Jim Harrison
 
Posts: 871 | Location: Ann Arbor | Registered: September 07, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Fighting the good fight
Picture of RogueJSK
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quote:
Originally posted by NikonUser:
I think what you have is a Short Magazine Lee Enfield (SMLE) No.1 Mk. III (not to be confused with the Mk. III*) with a Pattern 1907 sword bayonet.


Not quite. That is a P1907 bayonet. But the rifle is not a No. 1 Mk. III.

It is actually a No. 1 Mk. I***. That's a Short Magazine Lee Enfield No. 1 Mk I that has been partially upgraded to Mk. III standards.

It was produced as a No. 1 Mk. I* in 1907 by Birmingham Small Arms, one of the last Mk. Is produced before they converted over to Mk. III production that same year.

It then went through one or more refurbishments, likely during or immediately after WW1, which included some upgrades that brought it more in line with Mk. III standards. The two additional stars were then added to denote the upgrade. (Notice the last two stars on the receiver markings are a different font.)

In addition to the dead giveaway of the "Mk. I***" marking on the receiver, also notice that it retains the earlier Mk. I's two-part sliding charger slot on the bolt and receiver, instead of the later Mk. III's fixed charger bridge over the receiver.

No. 1 Mk. III with charger bridge on the left; No. 1 Mk. I with partial receiver charger guide on the right:


Full charger guide on a No. 1 Mk. I, with the bolt retracted to align the partial charger guide on the bolt with the partial charger guide on the receiver:


It also has kept its volley sights, which is less common, as they were usually deleted from most Mk. Is and Mk. IIIs over the years during upgrades and refurbishments. Those are the flip-up sights on the left side of the rifle, designed to be used for groups of infantry to fire volleys of fire en masse at long ranges. (Out to 2800 yards, in theory.)




It is not a WW1 or WW2 bringback. A decent number of these converted Mk. I***s came onto the US surplus rifle market via Interarms importing them from Ireland back in the 1960s. The British had supplied these older converted Mk. I***s to Ireland in the 1920s, and they were no longer being used, so they were surplused and exported. These former Irish No. I***s have ER, CR, or G prefixes to the serial. (This rifle has a CR prefix.)
 
Posts: 23138 | Location: Northwest Arkansas | Registered: January 06, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Wait, what?
Picture of gearhounds
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by NikonUser:
quote:
Originally posted by gearhounds:
That may very well be WWII bring back. I would sit down with the gentleman and ask some questions if he's up for it.


It may actually be a WWI bring back. Also, the OP said the gentleman had sadly, passed away on February 1.

Oops- I fixated on the line that said he IS 88 not was 88. Regardless, an amazing piece of history.




I'm very discreet. I have no code of ethics. I will kill anyone, anywhere. Children, animals, old people, doesn't matter. I just love killing.
Krombopulos Michael
 
Posts: 10645 | Location: Martinsburg WV | Registered: April 02, 2011Reply With QuoteReport This Post
hello darkness
my old friend
Picture of gw3971
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by shovelhead:
quote:
If it were me, I would thank the family profusely for the nice memento and promise to take exceedingly good care of it.


I agree with this with a P.S. If something ever happens between you and your girlfriend I would offer it back to her or another family member though, that would only be right at least in my viewpoint.


Already had that chat. I am operating on the idea that I will hold and take care of it until she is ready for it.
 
Posts: 6372 | Location: West Jordan, Utah | Registered: June 19, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
hello darkness
my old friend
Picture of gw3971
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by RogueJSK:
quote:
Originally posted by NikonUser:
I think what you have is a Short Magazine Lee Enfield (SMLE) No.1 Mk. III (not to be confused with the Mk. III*) with a Pattern 1907 sword bayonet.


Not quite. That is a P1907 bayonet. But the rifle is not a No. 1 Mk. III.

It is actually a No. 1 Mk. I***. That's a Short Magazine Lee Enfield No. 1 Mk I that has been partially upgraded to Mk. III standards.

It was produced as a No. 1 Mk. I* in 1907 by Birmingham Small Arms, one of the last Mk. Is produced before they converted over to Mk. III production that same year.

It then went through one or more refurbishments, likely during or immediately after WW1, which included some upgrades that brought it more in line with Mk. III standards. The two additional stars were then added to denote the upgrade. (Notice the last two stars on the receiver markings are a different font.)

In addition to the dead giveaway of the "Mk. I***" marking on the receiver, also notice that it retains the earlier Mk. I's two-part sliding charger slot on the bolt and receiver, instead of the later Mk. III's fixed charger bridge over the receiver.

No. 1 Mk. III with charger bridge on the left; No. 1 Mk. I with partial receiver charger guide on the right:


Full charger guide on a No. 1 Mk. I, with the bolt retracted to align the partial charger guide on the bolt with the partial charger guide on the receiver:


It also has kept its volley sights, which is less common, as they were usually deleted from most Mk. Is and Mk. IIIs over the years during upgrades and refurbishments. Those are the flip-up sights on the left side of the rifle, designed to be used for groups of infantry to fire volleys of fire en masse at long ranges. (Out to 2800 yards, in theory.)




It is not a WW1 or WW2 bringback. A decent number of these converted Mk. I***s came onto the US surplus rifle market via Interarms importing them from Ireland back in the 1960s. The British had supplied these older converted Mk. I***s to Ireland in the 1920s, and they were no longer being used, so they were surplused and exported. These former Irish No. I***s have ER, CR, or G prefixes to the serial. (This rifle has a CR prefix.)
Thanks for all the information guys. Thanks for the picture with the volley sight. I was trying to figure out how the volley sight worked.
 
Posts: 6372 | Location: West Jordan, Utah | Registered: June 19, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of xl_target
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Why wouldn't you keep that rifle?
Apart from being a relatively uncommon rifle, it is a momento of the old man.
My wife's grandfather left me his old single shot shotgun. I only knew him short time before he died. Even though it is not worth anything, I treasure it and will never sell it. I still think of him ever time I open the safe and see it.
 
Posts: 2271 | Registered: January 15, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
hello darkness
my old friend
Picture of gw3971
posted Hide Post
quote:
Originally posted by xl_target:
Why wouldn't you keep that rifle?
Apart from being a relatively uncommon rifle, it is a momento of the old man.
My wife's grandfather left me his old single shot shotgun. I only knew him short time before he died. Even though it is not worth anything, I treasure it and will never sell it. I still think of him ever time I open the safe and see it.


It just feels like a rifle like this should stay in his family. As of now no one seems to want it. If that changes in the future I would be happy to return it to them. It might save me a lot of money to return it. History is a favorite subject for me and the longer I have this rifle the more I want to
buy more of these rifles to learn about their history and use during their lifetime.
 
Posts: 6372 | Location: West Jordan, Utah | Registered: June 19, 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Picture of xl_target
posted Hide Post
The gentleman who gave me his shotgun? He wanted ME to have it. He was very specific about that.
He had sons and granddsons but he wanted me to have his shotgun.

The guy who gave you that rifle? He wanted YOU to have it. He could chosen anyone else in his family but he chose you. Honor his choice as he apparently saw more character in you than anyone else around him.

It is a beautiful rifle. Take good care of it.
 
Posts: 2271 | Registered: January 15, 2009Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Page late and a dollar short
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quote:
It just feels like a rifle like this should stay in his family. As of now no one seems to want it. If that changes in the future I would be happy to return it to them. It might save me a lot of money to return it. History is a favorite subject for me and the longer I have this rifle the more I want to
buy more of these rifles to learn about their history and use during their lifetime.


First two sentences I agree with.

Next three, well sometimes things just "speak" to you. And in your own way you are preserving history.


Ignorance is a powerful tool if applied at the right time, even, usually, surpassing knowledge(E.J.Potter, A.K.A. The Michigan Madman)
 
Posts: 5863 | Location: Livingston County Michigan USA | Registered: August 11, 2002Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Get on the fifty!
Picture of Andyb
posted Hide Post
He wanted it to go to you, I would respect his wishes.

These Mil Surps are a heck of a rabbit hole that they aren't making more of!

Nice rifle! Smile



Pickin' stones and pullin' teats is a hard way to make a living. But, sure as God's got sandals, it beats fightin' dudes with treasure trails.

We've been tricked, we've been backstabbed, and we've been quite possibly, bamboozled.
 
Posts: 3227 | Location: OK | Registered: November 07, 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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