Home Main Category General Firearms

SMLE weak? I think not

TugarTugar Senior MemberPosts: 2,204 Senior Member
edited May 22 in General Firearms #1
A bit long winded but interesting. Trying to make a SMLE in 300 WIn mag fail on purpose.


Weak action indeed. Take one any day. Love the Lee Enfield.


Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy, its inherent virtue is the equal sharing of misery.
Winston Churchill

Replies

  • earlyagainearlyagain Posts: 6,721 Senior Member
    That reminds me of the Brooklyn Bridge. The steel contractor pulled a scam and slipped countless wagons of sub-par steel past inspection that went into the actual bridge. Roebling had so over engineered it, that to this day it doesn't matter. 

    Amazing that the rifle carried on through so much for so long with a manufactured defect. Excellent design. 
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 8,145 Senior Member
    That vid gave me giggles when Bloke first released it, and it does still.   The British offerings top my list of manually-operated weapons of war, though I still have trouble deciding whether I like the SMLE/No. 4 or P14/M1917 family best, but by the time they got to the No.4 MK2, there was little more one could ask of a conscript bang stick.

    The barrel bedding systems of both the SMLE and No. 4 are works of genius - mad scientist level stuff on the first, and elegant brilliance on the second.  They were very much at the top of the game.
    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 11,623 Senior Member
    edited May 22 #4
      I saw that video; interesting although I hate to see a rifle destroyed. Actually, that wasn't a SMLE, it was a No 4.

    Bloke is an engineer and a good shooter and his videos are always interesting.  Regarding the L-E rifles, on another video he says no one in England worries about headspace like we do over here; the difference between a LE go and no go gauge is huge.  And if you're really interested saving brass for multiple reloads, the LE isn't the rifle for that.

    I'm down with the No 4 Mark 1 because the rear sight is the best.  Machined parts, whereas the later Marks of the No 4 had stamped parts.  My sporterized No 4 Mk 1 has the great sights.  The later No 4s also had wartime expedient bedding rules, as well. Not that it applies to my cut and replaced forearm rifle, but were I to find a deal on an unmolested LE, I'd know what to look for.

    I had a P 14, a Remington for a while.  It was heavy, long, rough, and greasy.  About 12-15 years ago, paid $60 for it at a guns how on late Sunday afternoon.  Best time to buy at a gun show.  I think the barrel was slightly bent, shot left and I didn't have the knowledge or tools to adjust the front sight. Good rifle, but if I was toting a rifle in the trenches of WW 1, it would be a shorter, handier SMLE.
    Concealed carry is for protection, open carry is for attention.
  • BigslugBigslug Senior Member Posts: 8,145 Senior Member
    Gene L said:
    I saw that video; interesting although I hate to see a rifle destroyed.  Bloke is an engineer and a good shooter and his videos are always interesting.  Regarding the L-E rifles, on another video he says no one in England worries about headspace like we do over here; the difference between a LE go and no go gauge is huge.  And if you're really interested saving brass for multiple reloads, the LE isn't the rifle for that.

    Neck sizing brass allocated to the particular rifle is the key there as is making sure it's trimmed to prevent sticking.  I'm loading for three .303's and they all have notable variance in how they blow the shoulder forward on firing.  Since the guns headspace on the case rim, and military forces don't care about brass life, the Brits were pretty clearly thinking "leave some room for the mud" with regards to chamber dimensions.

    Gene L said:

    I'm down with the No 4 Mark 1 because the rear sight is the best.  Machined parts, whereas the later Marks of the No 4 had stamped parts.  My sporterized No 4 Mk 1 has the great sights.  The later No 4s also had wartime expedient bedding rules, as well. Not that it applies to my cut and replaced forearm rifle, but were I to find a deal on an unmolested LE, I'd know what to look for.
    Post-war production or rebuild is the ticket there, as they had time to care about what they were doing again.  The milled MK1 rear sights were the big production holdup in WWII, and mess of cheaper stamped options were implemented.  Post-war, they went back to MK1's and often swapped them back into guns that originally came with the cheapies.

    The No.4 MK2's claim to fame was that it unpinned the trigger from the bottom metal and attached it to the receiver.  This eliminates any variability in trigger pull you might get due to differences in action screw torque or stock warping changing the orientation between the trigger and sear.

    The forend test is pretty easy - see if it takes 3-5 pounds to lift the barrel off the 6:00 contact with the forend.  That can be adjusted at both the front and the back of the forend, but there's a little mind-bending geometry involved compared with how you'd approach it on a single piece Mauser-family stock.  If you're gonna play that game, I recommend Roger Wadham's The 2012 Complete Book on Lee Enfield Accurizing.  It will save you a lot of "Huh?" 

    Gene L said:
     
    I had a P 14, a Remington for a while.  It was heavy, long, rough, and greasy.  About 12-15 years ago, paid $60 for it at a guns how on late Sunday afternoon.  Best time to buy at a gun show.  I think the barrel was slightly bent, shot left and I didn't have the knowledge or tools to adjust the front sight. Good rifle, but if I was toting a rifle in the trenches of WW 1, it would be a shorter, handier SMLE.
    I'm super torn on that.  The SMLE has less bolt travel, is handier and lighter, and has a bigger mag box.  The P14/M1917 is a BEAST of a mechanism with the best sights going in WWI and has the indestructible milled, totally internal magazine.  One of the things I lust after is a No.1 MKV, which was a limited experimental run from the early 1920's where they toyed with a rear flipping peep sight similar to what they ended up with on the No. 4.

    Of course, if you want TRUE Lee-Enfield porn, you won't get much smuttier than Val Kilmer's Lee-Speed from The Ghost and the Darkness.  Y'all can have Dirty Harry's M29 or John Wayne's Peacemaker - I WANT THIS:





    Movie gun fail:  he's loading pointy MKVII ammo (post-1910) in a movie set in the round-nose world of 1898.  Yes, the nerds notice. :D
    WWJMBD?

    "Nothing is safe from stupid." - Zee
  • earlyagainearlyagain Posts: 6,721 Senior Member
    I read that there's a noted difference in war production steel and pre-war production. It was either GBs or Australia"s sniper variants were held up a bit until pre-war steel could be procured for barrels.

    The video shows Bloke and the GS being able to identify detailed info about the barrel on the test rifle. Seems to be an English eccentricity to record exact info there.
  • Gene LGene L Senior Member Posts: 11,623 Senior Member
    The English held onto and changed things on their rifles for a long time. The buttstock socket has a lot of information and so does the Nocks form.  When the English changed something fairly minor, they'd indicate that change on the socket with an *.  Or a Mark for more major changes.  Sweden didn't change their Mausers for a long time, but the bore diameter was recorded on the discs on the stocks and kept updated with little triangles.  Accuracy persons, those Swedes.
    Concealed carry is for protection, open carry is for attention.
Sign In or Register to comment.
Magazine Cover

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Temporary Price Reduction

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.

Get the top Guns & Ammo stories delivered right to your inbox every week.

Advertisement