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Thread: New SMLE No. 1 Mk. 3 Barrel Survey

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    Member flocass1's Avatar
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    New SMLE No. 1 Mk. 3 Barrel Survey

    Hi All,

    I do not know of a reliable source for NEW No. 1 Mk. 3 Lee-Enfield barrels. Phoenix Arms in Australiaicon makes them, but their factory burned down, and importation into the U.S. is likely impossible, once they rebuild. Sarco has some new Ishapore barrels, but other than that, nothing. That source will dry up. Consequently, I know a guy who owns a highly skilled machine shop, and he was playing with the idea of making them from barrel blanks. But before he gets started, he wanted me to do an informal survey to see what the demand would be.
    Any feedback that you can offer would be greatly appreciated.

    Many thanks!

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    I would be very interested especially if they are completely stripped (suitable for use as MkI barrels). I have been bugging Lothar Walther about having them sell the SMLE profile in the states and have been consistently brushed off or ignored.

    Quantity wise I have five projects in hand that need a barrel/replacement barrel. Possibly ten or more within a year or two. Long Lee barrels would also be a godsend. I'd be in for possibly as many as thirty of those. I assume these will be fully chambered with the barrel tennon threads properly clocked, possibly the front sight key slot cut too?

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    Really Senior Member Daan Kemp's Avatar
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    I would hazard a guess that there would be a steady demand for many years for all models LE.


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    I think before even testing the waters your friend make up the appropriate barrels say for the No 1 MkIII in standard and H profile then get a good reliable shooter/Smith to test them I'm thinking Brian Dickicon would be a good start.
    However like all things I am sure there is insurance involved as if you are marketing a firearm product then it has to be bullet proof and cost effective TBoneshipwrighting here in Aus was selling the lothar walther 303 S/S barrels & Mauser barrels not long ago but they did require some smithing to be fitted correctly.

    There will be allot of leg work getting everything lined up I am sure there is a market for them but it wont just be a few hundred barrels it may be a 1000 you have to do then there is marketing of them I am sure there is a market but in all honesty the way the gun laws are now it would just be the USAicon market us antipodians down here are fed the scraps of what the world don't want.

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    Really Senior Member Alan de Enfield's Avatar
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    It interesting the way the UN is going, and the fact that the US has (apparently) signed up to these resolutions.

    Firearms law researcher and writer Colin Greenwood has been investigating this UN process and his findings must be deeply unsettling for all sporting and recreational firearms users. The sub-committees tasked with producing reports and recommendations that are often accepted by the UN with little or no debate are secretive, refusing to disclose their membership or the remits they are working to. They will not divulge the basis of ‘facts’ contained in their reports, how research was carried out and where, who was interviewed and so on. One fact that is clear are that they will NOT make any distinction between civilian sporting arms, (even shotguns), and military weapons, and that they believe that arms ownership is a bad thing per se. Greenwood is convinced that this is a movement towards international civilian arms control via the back door under the cloak of keeping AKs and RPGs out of the hands of African child soldiers or guerrillas.




    Things may get ‘worse’ too in that the proposed conventions seek to ban the manufacture of arms and ammunition of ANY type and ANY calibre, except by government licensed concerns which must be closely regulated. Quite right too you might think, but remember that your gunsmith is an ‘arms constructor’, and you are an ‘ammunition' manufacturer’ if you hand load. Until now, the US government has been a bastion against this sort of undemocratic backdoor control by routinely telling the UN to naff off! Not so under Barak Obama, the State Department allegedly signalling a change of policy here, its first move being to announce that export licenses will not be issued for any barrel chambered for 5.56 or 7.62 NATO destined for a commercial end-user.



    Resolution adopted by the General Assembly
    [without reference to a Main Committee (A/55/383/Add.2)]
    55/255. Protocol against the Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, Their Parts and Components and Ammunition, supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime
    http://www.unodc.org/pdf/crime/a_res_55/255e.pdf
    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...

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    Thread Starter
    Quote Originally Posted by CINDERS View Post
    think before even testing the waters your friend make up the appropriate barrels say for the No 1 MkIII in standard and H profile then get a good reliable shooter/Smith to test them I'm thinking Brian Dickicon would be a good start.
    Would you be able to tell me more about who Brian Dick is, or how I can contact him? Like WillSarchet, and many others. I would like to get a barrel or two for some of these old rifles.

    ---------- Post added at 01:50 PM ---------- Previous post was at 01:40 PM ----------

    As I understand his capabilities, this project for No.1 Mk.3 barrels would be done on CNC equipment, and if parts are available (i.e. rear sight bases), they would be ready to go. Yes, the threads would be timed correctly, and the key slot cut.
    He already repaired a barrel for me on a 1936 BSA No.1 Mk.3 that was an Iraqi contract. He also repaired a damaged bolt on my 1943 Savage No.4 Mk.1, so now it is 100% matching and correct, and his work was magnificent on both counts.

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    Really Senior Member Alan de Enfield's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by flocass1 View Post
    Would you be able to tell me more about who Brian Dickicon is,

    BDLicon Ltd
    Probably one of the most experienced gunsmiths for Lee Enfields in the USAicon,

    BDL LTD Weapons and Militaria
    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...

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    Advisory Panel Brian Dick's Avatar
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    flocass1, I wish your friend good luck and will help any way I can. I've one question though. Why not just breech up your SMLE rifles with the nos RFI barrels from Sarco. I've breeched up quite a few and they are excellent. I'd buy one or two to stash for spares whether I needed it or not if I were you guys while they're cheap and plentiful.

    Criterion had plans to make SMLE barrels towards the end of their No.4 barrel development. I sent them cut breech ends from all manufacturers at the time to play with. I'm not sure whether the plan is tabled for now or cancelled. Even their No.4 barrels which are excellent are unavailable at this time. Lothar Walther barrels will be welcome too for both No.1 and No.4 rifles when some finally get imported. Brian

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    Really Senior Member Strangely Brown's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alan de Enfield View Post
    It interesting the way the UN is going, and the fact that the US has (apparently) signed up to these resolutions.

    Firearms law researcher and writer Colin Greenwood has been investigating this UN process and his findings must be deeply unsettling for all sporting and recreational firearms users.
    Alan, Colin died in 2017 from memory did he not?
    Mick

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    Really Senior Member Bruce_in_Oz's Avatar
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    A couple of things:

    Lee Enfield barrels, especially SMLE and earlier, are nor exactly "plug and play" items.

    Then there are the intersting 'thread-spec' differences between a No 4 and all those thatprecede3d it.

    No4 barrels breech onto the receiver / body front face, SMLE and earlier breech to the inner breech ring.

    Not impossible to make "pre-fits" but the receiver variables AND bolt and body wear add to the challenge.

    Also, not much tolerance allowable on indexing / qualifying, if you want your Knox form driving flat in the right place and your front sights upright. It is perfectly feasible to do a bit of post-fit milling to a profiled "smooth" barrel in a SMLE. However Post-fit machining the lugs on a No4 barrel would deserve its own You-tube epic.

    And don't forget the correct form of thread for each type and the location and profiling of the extractor clearance cut,

    Finally, "Criterion Barrels", a branch of Krieger Barrels, in the US, has been known to turn out Lee Enfield barrels. Start here:

    Products - Criterion Barrels

    "Local" dealers / distributors are listed.
    Last edited by Bruce_in_Oz; 05-02-2021 at 10:57 PM.

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