+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 13

Thread: Questionable Lithgow No.1 Mk III*

Click here to increase the font size Click here to reduce the font size
  1. #1
    Member ct241's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Last On
    03-02-2021 @ 08:45 PM
    Location
    United States
    Posts
    17
    Local Date
    03-04-2021
    Local Time
    11:20 AM

    Question Questionable Lithgow No.1 Mk III*

    Hello everyone

    Been quite a while since I've posted. Anyway, quite a few years back, I got a Lithgowicon No.1 Mk III* in a private sale on an online sales board. Its been somewhat puzzling to me and I've gotten a lot of mixed opinions on what its origins may be.

    An album of detailed photos can be seen here: Lithgow SMLE No1 Mk III* - Album on Imgur

    Before I get started, I will note that it is a "JJCO NY NY" import, which immediately throws up red flags, but I'm aware of what typically is seen on those parts guns. I'll list details as evidence towards two different options.

    "Its an original rifle":
    • It has OA and MA stamps all over it.
    • The barrel and receiver are proof marked
    • The barrel is dated 9-'44
    • There are broad arrows marked on the rifle
    • There are a number A in star of inspection stamps on the rifle
    • There appears to be a very faint '46 stamped into the buttstock
    • Recoil pads are installed in the stock and there is cracking in the stock. Its clearly been well used.

    "Its a JJCO parts gun"
    • Its marked JJCO NY NY
    • The receiver is dated 1945, which was typical on JJCO NOS parts guns.
    • The serial number is lacking a prefix indicating it's from 1912 to 1918, so this would have had to have been a replacement receiver.

    Below are a couple photos to attach to the thread. I've got too many to warrant directly uploading to this thread. See the imgur link above



    If anyone has any thoughts, I'd be very glad to hear them! I can get more photos of specific things if necessary as well.
    Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version

Name:	Lithgow SMLE No1 Mk III - Imgur.jpg‎
Views:	182
Size:	2.59 MB
ID:	114534   Click image for larger version

Name:	Lithgow SMLE No1 Mk III - Imgur (1).jpg‎
Views:	180
Size:	1.13 MB
ID:	114535   Click image for larger version

Name:	Lithgow SMLE No1 Mk III - Imgur (4).jpg‎
Views:	177
Size:	2.51 MB
ID:	114538   Click image for larger version

Name:	Lithgow SMLE No1 Mk III - Imgur (2).jpg‎
Views:	168
Size:	916.1 KB
ID:	114536   Click image for larger version

Name:	Lithgow SMLE No1 Mk III - Imgur (3).jpg‎
Views:	172
Size:	2.14 MB
ID:	114537   Click image for larger version

Name:	Lithgow SMLE No1 Mk III - Imgur (5).jpg‎
Views:	89
Size:	1.13 MB
ID:	114539  
    Last edited by ct241; 01-26-2021 at 12:52 PM. Reason: pictures and more details

  2. # ADS
    Friends and Sponsors
    Join Date
    October 2006
    Location
    Milsurps.Com
    Posts
    All Threads
    Banner AD Space Available - Click HERE to Inquire Family owned and operated since 1962, Simpson LTD is the largest collector firearms store in the Midwest. Our globally sourced inventory represents many eras, with an emphasis on World War II and our favorite firearm, the Luger, of which we typically have 2,500 in stock.  Inventory changes daily with 10,000 firearms ready to ship; along with accessories, militaria, and hundreds of book titles. We also offer appraisals, consignment services ranging from single items to full collections, and we are one of the most reliable and competitively priced import and export services available.  We do not offer parts or gunsmithing, but we have a little bit of everything else. Visit our website for more information and our new technical video series Speaking Luger, and like Simpson Ltd on Facebook for updates, previews, and more. LIMITED TIME OFFER FROM THE AMERICAN GUNSMITHING INSTITUTE: Get Immediate Online Access To AGI's NEW Armorer's Course for Glock Pistols, Covering Every Generation of Glocks, Including the Latest Model 42/43 and Double Stack Pistols for ONLY $7.00! Brian Dick ... BDL Ltd. - Specializing in British and Commonwealth weapons Chuck in Denver ... Buy-Sell-Trade .. Guns, Cars Motorcycles Your source for the finest in High Power Competition Gear. Here at T-bones Shipwrighting we specialise in vintage service rifle: re-barrelling, bedding, repairs, modifications and accurizing. We also provide importation services for firearms, parts and weapons, for both private or commercial businesses. Banner AD Space Available - Click HERE to Inquire
     

  3. #2
    Contributing Member smle addict's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Last On
    Today @ 11:21 AM
    Location
    CA, USA
    Posts
    343
    Local Date
    03-04-2021
    Local Time
    08:20 AM
    Interesting rifle. I see your concern regarding JJ CO and their practices. I'm leaning towards your explanation of a receiver being replaced sometime in its life, but the serial number font does give me pause. I agree its a parts gun, but the Jovino put-togethers have a different finish altogether, and usually show evidence of post-service tinkering.

    If it had been through a proper arsenal FTR, it would be marked on the left side of the buttsocket with something like "MA 53" for example.

    Your rifle is showing evidence of post-service cadet use (remnants of paint on the stock). Could be it was pieced together to keep it in going for their needs. I am unfamiliar with the practices of the cadet forces in Australiaicon, so maybe someone can expand on this.

    And not all of Jovinos rifles were suspect. In the early 90's, JJ Co imported some very beautiful Lithgows SMLE's. Here is a link to some of the ones I picked up when they first came in to the US.

    https://www.milsurps.com/showthread.php?t=71965

  4. Avoid Ads - Become a Contributing Member - Click HERE
  5. #3
    Senior Member pisco's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Last On
    Today @ 02:51 AM
    Location
    aiustralia
    Posts
    147
    Local Date
    03-05-2021
    Local Time
    03:20 AM
    Hi from oz I have a 1942 Lithgowicon with the serial numbers stamped like that and it was a cadet rifle it was like new only the barrel was neglected it’s the only one I’ve seen like that but there would be heaps of them

  6. #4
    Contributing Member 22SqnRAE's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Last On
    Today @ 04:24 AM
    Location
    Brisbane - the middle of right side of Oz
    Posts
    285
    Local Date
    03-05-2021
    Local Time
    02:20 AM
    It's a Bitzer. (Bits of this, bits of that.)

    "...would have had to have been a replacement receiver." No such thing. The body (action) IS the rifle in the Commonwealth system. Everything else is replaceable.

    Check the Proof Action Assembly numbers on the top of the butt socket and the bolt underside Small stamped numerals usually in the 1000's to 10,000's range. If not matching or absent, then it's made up of parts. I can't see any PAA numbers form the photos I looked at.

    EDIT: Just revisited your photos. You have no PAA, so the body and bolt have not been proofed and matched during manufacture. Hence, this is a parts rifle. No further investigation necessary. Will it work? Yeah, sure. Is it safe? Well, JJCo had a legal obligation to sell fit for purpose firearms. Is it authentic? Parts are, but as a whole, no. Should you be worried? Depends whether you wish to shoot it or look at it as a collector.

    The serial in 1945 should be in the order of F37,000 to F39,000. Your number has been applied ex Lithgowicon.

    The Butt is from a 1943 assembled rifle. It's been through Lithgow for a refurb in 1946. But the rifle was only made in 1945 so that tells us the steel and furniture are not from the same rifle.

    The font of the serial is not typical Lithgow, most likely JJ Co.

    The muzzle cap number on the bayonet boss is... wrong.

    It's a real Lithgow. Its simply been assembled from parts of unfinished, or disassembled rifles and spare furniture components.
    Last edited by 22SqnRAE; 01-27-2021 at 07:17 PM. Reason: Photos reviewed
    Trying to save Service history, one rifle at a time...

  7. #5
    Really Senior Member Alan de Enfield's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Last On
    Today @ 11:20 AM
    Location
    Y Felinheli, Gogledd Cymru
    Posts
    1,984
    Local Date
    03-04-2021
    Local Time
    04:20 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by 22SqnRAE View Post
    The body (action) IS the rifle in the Commonwealth system. Everything else is replaceable.

    Prior to WW1 the 'master component' to which everything else was numbered was the barrel, this was changed and even in the WW1 instructions the 'body' was the master component (see para 18 in the instructions to Armourers for No1 Mk3 rifles)
    Attached Thumbnails Click image for larger version

Name:	Screenshot (25).png‎
Views:	68
Size:	199.7 KB
ID:	114589  
    Mine are not the best, but they are not too bad. I can think of lots of Enfields I'd rather have but instead of constantly striving for more, sometimes it's good to be satisfied with what one has...

  8. The Following 2 Members Say Thank You to Alan de Enfield For This Useful Post:


  9. #6
    Contributing Member 22SqnRAE's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Last On
    Today @ 04:24 AM
    Location
    Brisbane - the middle of right side of Oz
    Posts
    285
    Local Date
    03-05-2021
    Local Time
    02:20 AM
    Thanks, Alan, yes that silly idea did take some time to remove from the system.

    I suggest it came from muzzle loading days, when the barrel was the body, for better words. The Britishicon Army and its traditions are difficult to separate...

    As we were focussing on a Lithgow of 1940's vintage, that matter was history and no longer of practice to the Australianicon Army. Thank heavens...

    I think Mr Laidlericon frequently highlights the point that bodies were not consumable issue.
    Last edited by 22SqnRAE; 01-27-2021 at 09:56 PM.
    Trying to save Service history, one rifle at a time...

  10. #7
    Really Senior Member Alan de Enfield's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Last On
    Today @ 11:20 AM
    Location
    Y Felinheli, Gogledd Cymru
    Posts
    1,984
    Local Date
    03-04-2021
    Local Time
    04:20 PM
    Attachment 114610
    Quote Originally Posted by 22SqnRAE View Post
    I think Mr Laidlericon frequently highlights the point that bodies were not consumable issue.

    Yes, he was adamant that the body was NEVER available as a spare part, even in my 'Parts Lists' the body is shown only available WITH a barrel as a complete assembly.

    Ref No2 on the attached list is for the body - there is no Vocab number for the body alone.








    May 4th 2008

    Now, to cater for the vagaries of mass production, the designers cater for two of those points, the bolt and the bolt head. Why not the body then you ask? Once again, I can only sing from the hymn sheet that I know. That’s because in the UKicon Military, bodies were classed as the ‘MASTER COMPONENT’ and the master component was NEVER available from Ordnance Stores. NEVER, NIX, not EVER, contrary to what your grandma’s uncle Jim who knew a bloke whose friend met someone in the NAAFI at Tidworth might have told him. It was, is and always has been a blocked VAOS number. I know that it’s shown and illustrated in the parts list but just remember this. The parts list is a list of parts and not a list of AVAILABLE parts.

    However, Peter did have to back-track a little:

    Some weeks / months later Peter did issue an apology having found out that "The Canadians" did allow No4 bodies to be issued as separate parts.

    Found it :

    But now, it’s time to eat a bit of humble pie to JohnR. I said on a previous thread that what we call ‘the master component’ was NEVER available as a spare part. This was obviously to prevent a budding Armourer making up a rifle out of spare parts. I even related the story of Craftsman ‘Tiny’ Davidson in Malaya who did somehow manage something similar in Malaya with a No2 pistol and being caught with it in his locker by Sgt Doug Baker (later killed with 8-RAR in SVN). Doug told Johnny Cotterill, our Armourer Sergeant later ‘Tiny does 28 days in the can (as we called Holdsworthy Jail) or I lose my pension. It’s simple. Tiny does 28 days'! I have learned that at the big combined RCEME/REME workshops in WERL in Germanyicon, Canadianicon No4 and Bren bodies were available as replacement parts but only from Canadian Ordnance. This was cut short very quickly but quite clearly, Canadian Ordnance did supply master components and I should imagine, was awash with unlawful weaponry……….. But not in the UK, Australiaicon or New Zealand.
    Last edited by Alan de Enfield; 01-27-2021 at 08:45 PM.
    Mine are not the best, but they are not too bad. I can think of lots of Enfields I'd rather have but instead of constantly striving for more, sometimes it's good to be satisfied with what one has...

  11. #8
    Advisory Panel browningautorifle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Last On
    Today @ 11:08 AM
    Location
    Victoria BC
    Posts
    25,165
    Local Date
    03-04-2021
    Local Time
    08:20 AM
    Quote Originally Posted by Alan de Enfield View Post
    Canadianicon Ordnance did supply master components and I should imagine, was awash with unlawful weaponry…
    Well, I wouldn't want to have been the one caught building a weapon from spares. The jail time would be substantial and career ending. We weren't exactly awash in odd weapons...

    I understand that was Peter's quotation, I know he's reading these...here somewhere...
    Regards, Jim

  12. #9
    Member smerdon42's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
    Last On
    03-01-2021 @ 06:54 PM
    Location
    Natick Massachusetts USA
    Posts
    50
    Local Date
    03-04-2021
    Local Time
    11:20 AM
    Hey all it does look like it was added on post military to me but I have a Lithgowicon with no date stamp on it the serial number suggests it is a ve.ry early 1913/1914 year. Here is the kicker it wa srefurbished in India 1932 and has the mark for India on it rebarreled answer stocked as well . Every thing is same serial number as action . But not year tamp on the receiver it was common for India to scrub all traces of the rifles origin and restamp . This one is not done I have it in a storage box I will dig it out and post pictures . If only they could talk !!!

  13. #10
    Really Senior Member 5thBatt's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Last On
    Yesterday @ 01:42 AM
    Location
    Zombie Town, now with a H
    Posts
    750
    Local Date
    03-05-2021
    Local Time
    05:20 AM
    https://www.milsurps.com/showthread.php?t=18100&page=1 link to my thread on my 1918 BSA with a replacement 1939 Lithgowicon receiver, 10 years have passed since that thread & at that time believed it was replaced at Lithgow, however over the years i have noticed a few rifles in NZ with 39 dated Lithgow replacement parts so now believe the receiver came to NZ as a spare part & fitted here in NZ, this line of thought also helps explain some of the questions i had 10 years ago.

+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Questionable No. 32 Scope Can
    By Lance in forum The Lee Enfield Knowledge Library Collectors Forum
    Replies: 20
    Last Post: 08-11-2011, 06:25 PM
  2. questionable presentation carbine
    By phillydude in forum M1/M2 Carbine
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 02-27-2011, 07:28 PM
  3. Caution: Questionable M1917's
    By Cass in forum Pattern 1913/1914 and M1917 Rifles
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 11-21-2010, 04:17 PM
  4. Questionable 30-rounder
    By dnikkor in forum M1/M2 Carbine
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 11-25-2009, 06:25 PM

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts