Sunday, April 8, 2007

Sunday Ugly Gun Post

Enfield No. 4 MkI Caliber .303 British:

This is a professionally sporterized Enfield that has had a lot of gunsmithing done to it. It had a Wolff bolt spring installed, barrel shortened to carbine length, fiberoptic blade front sight installed......

Here' what a proper No. 4 Mk I looks like:

as in the one on the bottom.

Yes, that's quite an improvement. Some kind of recycled plastic formed into a stock, a bobbed barrel, original ten round detachable magazine reduced by half, and that lovely primer-grey new parkerized finish.

The thing is, you can buy plastic stocked, all weather finish brand new rifles for less than the cost of this conversion at Wal-Mart, Fleet Farm, and a hell of a lot of mom & pop gun shops.

Which would leave more hand-made and hand-finished rifles for those of us who appreciate what went into them:

Apprentice training, Royal Small Arms Factory, 1947.

Assembler's bench, Royal Small Arms Factory


Ambulance Driver said...

"The thing is, you can buy plastic stocked, all weather finish brand new rifles for less than the cost of this conversion at Wal-Mart, Fleet Farm, and a hell of a lot of mom & pop gun shops."

Indeed, and in calibers with arguably better ballistics than the British .303.

I agree it's a shame. Just remind me to never show you pics of my sporterized 8mm Mauser. In all fairness, it had been modified before my Dad or I ever got our hands on it.

But it would be cool to have it in the original condition.

Joe(Stranded in Iowa) said...

Can't get them at WalMart anymore, at least near me. Iowa City, Cedar Rapids - they've closed shop.

And I've a sporterized Swedish Mauser, and it was done before I got it. I won't throw it away because of it, though.

MauserMedic said...


I can appreciate/understand those rifles converted from the '20s through '60s. I'll be writing a post on my thoughts on that situation soon. Suffice to say for now, there's a large difference to me between a man on a tight budget who needs a meat rifle, and man who wants to exercise his idea of artistic vision on a piece of history 65 years post WWII. I'll try to remember to include an image of my 1920 date 1903 Mk I Springfield converted to a simple deer rifle back when Lyman aperture receiver sights were high-tech.


Thank goodness for small miracles. I live in IC for a number of years, and attended drill there until fairly recently. The LAST thing I would have ever expected in the People's Republic of Johnson County was a Scheel's; it gives me warm fuzzies thinking of all the lefties having to be in the same store with the eeeevil guns while they buy their hiking and camping gear. Don't know if you've ever been to these guys, but look up The Ammo Bearer near Hy-Vee in Iowa City if you have time. Various milsurps with occasional treasures to be found. Bought my first evil rifle there back in the '80s, a Chinese SKS. Still have it; wish I lived closer these days.

Joe(Stranded in Iowa) said...

MM: I live just west of IC. Sheels is more expensive for my tastes, I look for the bargains. I suppose the only thing that comforts the lefties while they are in there is that they can spend time in the store and never see an evil gun, they are all upstairs.

I've purchased supplies from the Ammo Bearer when they are at Hawkeye Downs gun shows but no guns. I should put them on my list to visit, but that means I would have to leave the county.

Gary said...

That should be a crime. Well, it is a crime, but it ought to be illegal as well.

Butchering a fine MilSurp like that deserves a horse whipping.