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  1. #11
    Advisory Panel Brian Dick's Avatar
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    I disagree Sunray. CAI imported thousands of honest rifles, both SMLE and No.4. I bought hundreds over the years they were cheap and in quantity. I still have a few in my own collection. The OP’s rifle is a 78Lxxxx made in 1944. Just as I described and right as rain.

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  4. #12
    Member kpj53's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Dickicon View Post
    No mystery at all. It's definitely been worked on over the course of it's service as about 90% of them have. The metal finish is still original and not FTR. It looks and reads like a very nice rifle. Canadianicon owned rifles aren't rare but not that common to find either.

    I just looked and unfortunately don't have a Mk.3 catch for your rear sight. I do have lots of spare springs for them. I'm scrambling like everyone else now to find spare Mk.1 and Mk.3 rear sights for shop restorations. The only complete sights i have available are Mk.2 of all different mfg, Britishicon, Canadian and US.
    Appreciate the reply, I'm pretty sure its a legit rifle. Its been in the back of the safe for a while and I was looking at it the other day and I always wondered about it.

    All the sights I have found have that catch broken in the same spot so I guess its pretty common. The little tab on the bottom breaks off and it sticks straight out the side. I'd like to find a LB marked one, but all of the ones I have found are broken the same way. One day I'll run across one.

    Thanks again.

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  6. #13
    Member kpj53's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sunray View Post
    A 1941 Long Branch '*' receiver is very early. That's when the "conversion" to the Mk I* began.
    However, that one was likely cobbled together out of parts bins with zero QC. The CAI ST A B VT stamped on the muzzle is Century Arms International, St. Albans, Vermont. It's not an import stamp. They are well known for assembling Lee-Enfields by the thousands straight out of parts bins and no QC to ensure they were safe to shoot.
    Really only means you must check the headspace before even thinking about shooting it. So do not shoot it again until you have done so.
    You can buy headspace gauges from Pacific Tool and Gauge or rent 'em from Reamer Rentals(this is the least expensive).
    It was possibly refinished and likely stocked at the same time. The "303 Can." is them too. Neither the rifle nor ammunition was ever called anything buy .303 British by anybody else.
    It most certainly is an import stamp, I have quite a few milsurp rifles with the CAI stamp. From the discreet small barrel marks to the latest huge dot matrix billboards with new serial numbers. The CAN after .303 means it came from Canadaicon (country of origin). Just like a BSA No4 I have that is marked .303 Englandicon came from England.

    There were some companies that cobbled together Lithgowicon rifles, John Jovino Company of New York is who you are thinking of. But century is primarily an importer, they do 'build' some rifles like Galils, FALs and G3s that came in with cut receivers because they were automatic in their original form and could not be imported into the US complete. But Century does not build most of them, they are sub contracted. Some are good builds and some are crap depending who did the builds for them.

    Most of their milsurps that are legal to import are not touched by them. Most I have bought from them were still packed with cosmolineicon. Just stamped, graded and sold.

    Either way, headspace is perfect on this rifle (matching bolt) as well as every part being being LB marked as it should. Far from a cobbled together parts gun.
    Last edited by kpj53; 10-14-2018 at 12:41 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 42rocker View Post
    Rear Sight parts. Might want to try a friends company brp
    SMLE No.1 Mk.3 Receiver, Bolt, Sight Parts

    Later 42rocker
    Thanks for the suggestion.

    They have the rear sight leaf but no other parts unfortunately. I have bought a few parts for my Bren from them and they are good people to deal with.

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    Member shoe303's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sunray View Post
    A 1941 Long Branch '*' receiver is very early. That's when the "conversion" to the Mk I* began.
    In addition to being mistaken about he importer's marks, I think you misread the date on the receiver. It is marked "1944 Long Branch".

    CAI also imported most of the "War Reserve" rifles from Europe in the late 80's/early 90's. These were mostly 1949 and 1950 dated Long Branch with some earlier Long Branch rifles mixed in. The majority were in excellent condition.

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    Member kpj53's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shoe303 View Post
    In addition to being mistaken about he importer's marks, I think you misread the date on the receiver. It is marked "1944 Long Branch".

    CAI also imported most of the "War Reserve" rifles from Europe in the late 80's/early 90's. These were mostly 1949 and 1950 dated Long Branch with some earlier Long Branch rifles mixed in. The majority were in excellent condition.
    Not to mention the many thousands of other WWI, WWII and cold war rifles and pistols CAI imported in over the years. Yes, some of them were mismatched junk threw together (not by CAI) and sold by the pound from government stores around the world. But some were perfect arsenal rebuilt or originals, I have several of both examples.

    I'm not defending CAI too much, I have been stuck with a few of their bad semi-auto builds, but I'm glad they were around for the most part.

    Also, ANY milsurp rifle should be checked for headspace (among other things) before firing, no matter the condition. That I totally agree with.
    Last edited by kpj53; 10-14-2018 at 11:49 AM.

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  13. #17
    Advisory Panel Brian Dick's Avatar
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    The country stamp is post 1968 and is an ATF import requirement. It means country of manufacture, not country of origin as is seen on many pre-1968 imports. That's why you see the "Englandicon" stamp on Canadianicon and US made No.4's returned from the UK prior to the GCAicon 1968. Surplus military rifles were banned from importation to the USAicon from 1968 until 1986. Interarms and Century Arms did the majority of large scale imports post 1986. I had No.4's from War Reserve Stores, mostly imported by IAC in Virginia and from both the UK and South Africa. It's just a personal observation but I think CAI imported more rifles from Europe, the middle east and India. In defense of John Jovino Company, not all of their rifles were cobbled together from parts. They purchased thousands of lovely original SMLE's direct from the Australianicon government in the mid 1980's. There was a pan shop in Montgomery Alabama that bought a thousand of them. I bought, sold and swapped lots of real beauties from those days. They also had a huge quantity of nos parts so they built rifles too. Some were fine and some were problematic. Nothing that couldn't be fixed though.

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    Member kpj53's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian Dickicon View Post
    The country stamp is post 1968 and is an ATF import requirement. It means country of manufacture, not country of origin as is seen on many pre-1968 imports. That's why you see the "Englandicon" stamp on Canadianicon and US made No.4's returned from the UK prior to the GCAicon 1968. Surplus military rifles were banned from importation to the USAicon from 1968 until 1986. Interarms and Century Arms did the majority of large scale imports post 1986. I had No.4's from War Reserve Stores, mostly imported by IAC in Virginia and from both the UK and South Africa. It's just a personal observation but I think CAI imported more rifles from Europe, the middle east and India. In defense of John Jovino Company, not all of their rifles were cobbled together from parts. They purchased thousands of lovely original SMLE's direct from the Australianicon government in the mid 1980's. There was a pan shop in Montgomery Alabama that bought a thousand of them. I bought, sold and swapped lots of real beauties from those days. They also had a huge quantity of nos parts so they built rifles too. Some were fine and some were problematic. Nothing that couldn't be fixed though.

    I'll defer to your knowledge on the import marks. I thought post 86 (current) was country of origin but I'm not an importer so I never looked into it All I know is I HATE the newer dot matrix markings with new serial numbers. But its better than the alternative of not having any imports at all.



    I have a John Jovino SMLE, an Aussie '43 that was FTR'd in 53, stock was cracked in many places (may not have come from them like that) but it appears to be all original. Fine shooter as well but I spent a couple weeks gluing and pinning the stock back together. I have seen some of their parts guns and they weren't horrible, cobbled is a bit strong I agree.

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