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Thread: Restoring a sporterized P13... My turn to play

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    Senior Member tatou's Avatar
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    Restoring a sporterized P13... My turn to play

    Alright... this is a somewhat follow up to a thread that was made in the forum ''Gunsmithing for Old Milsurps'' 7 years ago.
    Btw i hope i'm in the right forum, so adm. if i'm not pls let me know and i'll move to the right one.

    So anyway... a fellow enthusiast had purchased this sporterized Pattern 1913 trial rifle and was planning on restoring it.
    I guess he soon changed his mind because 2 years ago i found the same rifle for sale and immediately purchased it with the same plan.
    I had a few projects on the bench i needed to finish before tackling it, that also gave me the time to put funds aside for the project.
    I waited a while before even mentioning i had this rifle, to be sure it would be made... i now am confident enough it will be done.
    So lets start from the beginning.

    This is the rifle when i purchase it.

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    Senior Member tatou's Avatar
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    Step 1 ... evaluate the rifle and see what needs to be done and what is missing.

    - The rear sight ears were cut and had washers welded into place... so new ears have to be fabricated.
    - The stock needs to have a front portion spliced and new hand guards fabricated
    - The barrel is some kind of after market replacement in 303 that is not even of the right profile... a new one is needed.
    - The rear sight is missing altogether... a new one will have to be made by modify one from a P14
    - The front sight assembly is also missing... again a P14 one will be modify
    - The volley sights, missing... easily modify from a Lee Enfield one
    - The nose cap and screw are long gone... modifying a P14 might be possible, will see...
    - The bands are MIA ... P14 bands look exactly the same.

    Of course some of the repairs and/or fabrication might not be 100% correct but with a little bit of effort it should end up ''looking the part'' (no pun intended)
    Sounds easy enough.....

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    Senior Member tatou's Avatar
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    Step 2 ... See if what is left of the stock can be repaired.

    To me that project is as much about preservation as it is about restoration... meaning i want to save as much of what is original as possible.
    So saving the 1/2 stock i have is a must... that leaves me with the option of splicing a front part to the chopped P13 stock.
    The wood was sanded but not too badly ... everything behind the distinctive finger grooves is salvageable.

    Here's an original Pattern 1914 next to the P13
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    Last edited by tatou; 10-04-2020 at 12:53 AM.

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    Senior Member tatou's Avatar
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    More updates another day... it's late

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    Really Senior Member Mk VII's Avatar
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    Here's another one which somebody made into a Match Rifle




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    Senior Member tatou's Avatar
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    Ok more pics of the ''progress''
    You guys know the old saying... one step forward, two steps back... well this was one of those times.

    Since i know my way around working with wood a little i figured i would start with the stock.
    After determining that a P14 stock was pretty damned close to the P13 i went about and searched for a replacement.
    I got lucky and found a non matching P14 in one of those deactivated stock set (the one with two huge holes on each sides)
    This was perfect... it would provide me with the ''ears'' (i'll explain later) the new barrel, the front wood, the handguards and all the metal bits needed.
    This was obviously a ''bitser'' and i had no remorse's in taking what i needed from it.... i also got it for very cheap.

    I cut both stocks and spliced them together.
    The P14 wood was very dark... i knew from the start matching wood was going to be almost impossible so i was ok with that.
    Stain would have to be used.


    Turned out not too bad
    (or so i thought)

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    Senior Member tatou's Avatar
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    From the get go i had been collecting pictures from every online sources i could find.
    The ones from this forum are still my best sources i have.
    I also met with a collector, at a local gunshow... i knew he was one of the very few lucky guys that had an original one.
    He kindly offered help with additional pictures and measurements, when needed.
    That was GREAT....

    Well after checking with him, this is when things took two steps back...
    Turns out the P13 front volley sight pointer is actually a SMLE one... which is shorter than the P14 one.
    So... the notch on a P14 stock was now too long for my project.
    It also turns out that the P13 handguards do not have any holes for the rivets holding the metal liners.
    The P14 handguards do... there goes another of my shortcuts...

    I could have lived with both of those deficiencies but i really wanted this to be as close as possible to an original.
    Why make things simple when you can make them hard, huh ?...
    So after thinking about it i decided to make the front part and handguards from scratch.

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    Contributing Member Promo's Avatar
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    I've just had a very good laugh when I scrolled down here and under the field where I enter my post the forum suggested a similar thread. The title reads " Restoring a sporterized P13...". I couldn't remember that thread, so I clicked - and guess what, it is your particular rifle here, but in 2013. And back then it had a scope sitting in these "rings" on top of the receiver. See yourself here: https://www.milsurps.com/showthread.php?t=46367

    Secondly, I once did a picture comparison of the P.13 and a P.14 rifle. You can find these pictures in the Knowledge Libraryicon in the entry for the P.13 rifle, or directly here: Pattern 1913 "Trials" Rifle . If you need any additional images or better closeups, let me know.

    Finally, I think the toughest part will be replacing the barrel with one in the original caliber, plus the rear sight will be an impossible task since "conversion" of a normal P.14 won't do it. Maybe you should consider leaving the rifle in .303 caliber, use a normal P.14 sight and just shorten it enough to be of fitting length to the receiver bridge. For what I know there were trials done of the P.13 converted to .303 Britishicon caliber, so you wouldn't be too much off with that. Also note the "ears" of the P.13 and the P.14 rifle are of different shape. Maybe you would do better by not cutting off the "ears" of the P.14 receiver, but rather get new parts of correct thickness and shape laser cut and then weld them to the receiver.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Promo View Post
    I couldn't remember that thread, so I clicked - and guess what, it is your particular rifle here, but in 2013. And back then it had a scope sitting in these "rings" on top of the receiver. See yourself here: https://www.milsurps.com/showthread.php?t=46367
    Yes, tatou is the last entry to this thread, indicating he was "taking up the banner"
    Some do, some don't; some will, some won't; I might ...

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    Senior Member tatou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Promo View Post
    I've just had a very good laugh when I scrolled down here and under the field where I enter my post the forum suggested a similar thread. The title reads " Restoring a sporterized P13...". I couldn't remember that thread, so I clicked - and guess what, it is your particular rifle here, but in 2013. And back then it had a scope sitting in these "rings" on top of the receiver. See yourself here: https://www.milsurps.com/showthread.php?t=46367
    Yes it is the same rifle. The scope and sling were gone when i got it though.
    I made a final post in that tread and i explained it a little at the start of this one

    ---------- Post added at 03:59 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:55 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Promo View Post
    Secondly, I once did a picture comparison of the P.13 and a P.14 rifle. You can find these pictures in the Knowledge Libraryicon in the entry for the P.13 rifle, or directly here: Pattern 1913 "Trials" Rifle . If you need any additional images or better closeups, let me know.
    I searched all over for pictures and i don't think i've ever seen yours... they are great, many thanks i'm sure they will prove VERY useful.
    Having shots of P13 and P14 side by side is invaluable... next to having the real thing of course lol
    Do you still own that P13 ? ... if so, if i ever need measurements can i bother you ?

    ---------- Post added at 04:06 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:59 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Promo View Post
    Finally, I think the toughest part will be replacing the barrel with one in the original caliber, plus the rear sight will be an impossible task since "conversion" of a normal P.14 won't do it. Maybe you should consider leaving the rifle in .303 caliber, use a normal P.14 sight and just shorten it enough to be of fitting length to the receiver bridge. For what I know there were trials done of the P.13 converted to .303 Britishicon caliber, so you wouldn't be too much off with that. Also note the "ears" of the P.13 and the P.14 rifle are of different shape. Maybe you would do better by not cutting off the "ears" of the P.14 receiver, but rather get new parts of correct thickness and shape laser cut and then weld them to the receiver.
    I totally agree and this was also my assessment. (was planning on bringing the subject in a later post)
    I know .276 Enfield is very close to 7mm but having one made would surely prove very costly ..not to mention ammo.
    That is why i purchase a P14 (i mentioned it above)
    A P14 303 barrel would be cheap, would permit me to bring the rifle to the range when i feel to.
    I don't reload so i would not even know where to start.
    I also remember reading some where converted to 303, like you say... wetter that is true, i don't know... but mine will.
    On a side note, putting on a P14 barrel won't affect anything in the restoration or the rifle and i can always have a proper one made at a later date.

    ---------- Post added at 04:14 PM ---------- Previous post was at 04:06 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Promo View Post
    Also note the "ears" of the P.13 and the P.14 rifle are of different shape. Maybe you would do better by not cutting off the "ears" of the P.14 receiver, but rather get new parts of correct thickness and shape laser cut and then weld them to the receiver.
    I also wanted to get to that in a later post but you brought it up so spoiler alert... the ears are done.
    The guy doing the work for me on the metal had asked me to provide a P14 action to take some metal off as to have a similar metal, so the composition would be similar.
    That it might help in being less visible once re blued.
    Well it turned out the work was less extensive he expected and didn't use the P14 receiver.
    He was able to borrow an original P13 and made a brass jig to get the proper shape... pics to come

    ---------- Post added at 04:18 PM ---------- Previous post was at 04:14 PM ----------


    ---------- Post added at 04:23 PM ---------- Previous post was at 04:18 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Promo View Post
    the rear sight will be an impossible task since "conversion" of a normal P.14 won't do it. Maybe you should consider leaving the rifle in .303 caliber, use a normal P.14 sight and just shorten it enough to be of fitting length to the receiver bridge.
    Again, that was my plan.
    Here's what i had in mind.
    - Shorten it.
    - Have new graduations lazer engraved.
    - Have the ''texture'' surface of the peep sight remove.
    - Have a new peep hole made with a slight recess.
    This little part would probably require more work than any other, but i think it is doable.
    Might not be 100% correct in the end but could be quite close.[COLOR="black"]

    ---------- Post added at 04:26 PM ---------- Previous post was at 04:23 PM ----------

    ---------- Post added at 04:29 PM ---------- Previous post was at 04:26 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by NORTHOF60 View Post
    Yes, tatou is the last entry to this thread, indicating he was "taking up the banner"
    I thought of linking this tread over there...but i have no clue how you guys do this lol

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