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Thread: Junk P14 sporter to No.3 T(A) a work in progress

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    Contributing Member Kiwi's Avatar
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    Junk P14 sporter to No.3 T(A) a work in progress

    I’ve been reading a few threads lately about restoring rifles or scoring a steal of a deal on hard to come by rifles. This post is about my best score to date, which almost wasn’t!

    In November of 2012 I purchased a Model of 1917 barrel in an online sale here in New Zealandicon and I asked the seller if he had any other such parts. As it turned out he had a couple of P14 barrelled receivers, bolts and assorted p14 parts and for an extra NZ$250 I got them all. I figured I could use some of the spare parts and sell the rest and still come out on top. The seller reckoned that one of the barrels was decent but the receiver attached to it was previously modified and missing its rear sight ears. He removed the barrel from the chopped receiver and sent all the parts to me.

    Once everything arrived, I sorted through what I had and decided to quickly flick on the DIY job modified receiver with matching bolt (found in the parts box) and sold it August of 2012. I kept the matching barrel as it had a very nice bore.

    Now, fast forward almost 2 years to June of 2014 and I am scrolling through the pictures on the Knowledge Libraryicon of P14 rifles. Something seemed way too familiar with one of the rifles and I realise that the No.3T(A) had a fixed rear sight and threaded holes at the rear of the receiver like the one I once owned. I find the pictures of the receiver I sold off and get a horrible sinking feeling in my gut after I realise what I sold off. I quickly fire off an email to Dr Roger Payneicon and he confirms my suspicions.

    The next day I contact the buyer of the receiver and bolt receiver from 2012 via email and he informs me that he sent it off to a gunsmith a couple months earlier to be turned into a magnum hunting rifle, but he will check to see if that work has been done. Luck is on my side as it was the next job on his to-do list and was scheduled for conversion within a matter of days.

    Now I am in a bit of a bind, do explain what the bolt and receiver are from or keep quiet and ask to buy it back. I decide honesty is the best approach and after I explained what the original rifle was to the buyer, he agreed that it should be restored properly (his exact words on the matter were “It would be tantamount to sacrilege to go and modify it, knowing now what we do about the rifle”) and he agreed to swap it for another set I owned. After a nervous few weeks I had reunited the matching bolt, receiver and barrel under one roof.

    From what appeared to be a run of the mill p14 sporterised action, has now materialised into one of only 421 sniper rifles converted by Alexander Martin of Glasgow in the early years of WW2.

    Here are the only two pictures I have of the rifle prior to receiving the rifle back in 2012, so please don't be too hrd on me for not knowing what it was.



    Here are some pictures of the receiver showing threaded holes for rear scope mount and also the aftermarket side mount screw holes. You can see the barrel shows where the front scope mount was located and you can still see the slight indentation / blemish where the smaller grub screw on the original mount has marred the blueing above the bolt release.



    I am under no illusions that restoring this rifle back to what it once was is going to take some time (and money), so please bear with me as it may take a little while.

    There are some hurdles to overcome in this restoration.

    1. Fabricate a fixed 300yd rear peep sight (I will hold up my hand and admit that when I sold the receiver in 2012 I removed the damaged peep sight as it looked like a DIY job )

    2. Fabricate a scope bracket

    3. Fabricate a barrel bracket

    4. Fill the 3 side scope mount holes and re-finish the side of the receiver

    On the upside I have a number of donor Winchester P14 stock sets and a couple Aldis Brothers 1916 scopes so I am a little ahead of the curve with the restoration.

    What I am in need of is some help to get this rifle back to its former glory in the form of photographs and ideally measurement from No.3 T(A) rifle owners. I would like to thank Dr Roger Payne for the pictures he has sent me of his No.3 T(A) which has given me something to work off which has helped.

    If anyone else out there has a No.3T (A) out there that would be willing to provide some pictures or measurements to me so I can see the variations in scope bracket types that would be appreciated. At this stage I have either an Aldis scope or Skopar Beta scope liked up as a suitable scope candidate.

    I am under no illusions that restoring this rifle back to what it once was is going to take some time (and money), so please bear with me as it may take a little while.
    Last edited by Kiwi; 03-11-2019 at 05:11 PM. Reason: typo

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  4. #2
    Advisory Panel Patrick Chadwick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiwi View Post
    Now I am in a bit of a bind, do explain what the bolt and receiver are from or keep quiet and ask to buy it back. I decide honesty is the best approach and after I explained what the original rifle was to the buyer, he agreed that it should be restored properly (his exact words on the matter were “It would be tantamount to sacrilege to go and modify it, knowing now what we do about the rifle”) and he agreed to swap it for another set I owned.
    IMHO you did the right thing. Good for you!

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    Really Senior Member Salt Flat's Avatar
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    Kiwi, What a find! It seems like the really good ones always have some glitches or hang ups along the way. As in this case you almost lost it forever but by a stroke of luck recovered it within a day of being sporterized and modified for a magnum. That in itself is a fun story. I will be watching closely. Salt Flat

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    Really Senior Member henry r's Avatar
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    nice find. two thumbs up to the owner who sold/swapped it back to you. it is great when people understand/appreciate history.

    a No3 T is at the top of my dream sniper rifle list, so I'll enjoy watching this one progress.

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    Contributing Member Ovidio's Avatar
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    Looks like P14 season out here...
    34a cp., btg. Susa, 3° rgt. Alpini

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    Contributing Member Promo's Avatar
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    Andrew, I still had not given up the hope that you're going to sell your project - as you might know, I have an original scope in an original bracket waiting for a rifle without scope ... . By the way, got visited by a NZicon gun dealer yesterday, your gun laws seem to be quite liberal!


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