Saturday, January 7, 2012

Enfield No 3 Mk I Bolt Action Rifle

©National Firearms Museum

I picked up one of these Enfield P-14's (more accurately designated a No. 3, MK1) locally at a recent auction. The price was right (cheap). This rifle has no direct family connection except for the fact that we had our share of vets in the military throughout history and these old weapons tell us another part of that story that has always intrigued me.

The Enfield No. 3 photograph shown above comes from the NRA National Firearms Museum. Love or hate the NRA, you can't beat their firearms collection, photographs and documentation. My No. 3 is very similar, has lost more of the finish but is all complete, has matching serial numbers and was manufactured at the Eddystone Arsenal in Pennsylvaniasame as the one pictured. It is in original, unmodified condition and carries with it the marks of history and of the soldiers that used it. No sportorizing for this one. It is great for display and yet can still be a decent shooter.

Click the link below to see more about this rifle.

The National Firearms Museum: Enfield No 3 Mk I Bolt Action Rifle

Excerpt from the description:

"Over 2 million of these rugged long arms were manufactured at Enfield during the war years 1914-1918, and production continued after the war, both in England and at British arsenals in Ishapore, India and Lithgow, Australia. Many of these rifles continued in service with Commonwealth forces into the 1950s. A later bolt-action magazine rifle, designated the Pattern 1914, was inspired by the U.S. Model 1903 "Springfield."

"The only Mauser-pattern arm ever adopted by British forces, these rifles were developed at Enfield. Britain's involvement in the First World War prevented full-scale production in England, but the .303 British caliber P-14, later designated the Model 3, was produced in great numbers under contract in the United States by Winchester, and Remington, and at Eddystone Arsenal in Pennsylvania. P-14 and No. 1 rifles served as the workhorses for British, Canadian, Australian, and New Zealand troops during the war."

"More accurate than the No. 1, many P-14s were fitted with Aldis or Pattern 1918 telescopic sights for use by the British Army as sniper rifles. Later designated the Rifle No. 3, over 4 million P-14s were produced in .30-Ô06 caliber as the U.S. Model 1917 Magazine Rifle for use by American troops "Over There." These were the principal U.S. battle rifle during the war, and many P-14s and M1917s continued in service with both British and American forces through the early days of the Second World War."

As with all the old rifles, the fun starts with studying, cleaning, disassembling, assembling, documenting, adding accouterments (bayonets, ammo clips, belts, slings, etc.). Please feel free to email comments or additions as I am only as good as the information I get from websites, books and those knowing a whole lot more than I do.

Enfield No3 Component Drawings

British Enfield WWI P14 .303

Disaster at Eddystone Ammunition Co. (separate from but near the arms factory)

Other Guns:
Gun Hunt

Governor Frank Steunenberg's Model 1895 .303 Savage Rifle

Harry Orchard's Colt? Who are P.R.Edlington & Rev. Marshall F. Montgomery? Is there an Idaho Pen link? Email if you know these names or have any info.

Bob Meldrum's Colt sold at auction

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