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  1. #1
    Contributing Member smle addict's Avatar
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    Ishapore Mk I***

    Hello all,

    In the past year, I put three rifles back into military configuration, using a mix of repro and original parts. One was a SMLE Mk I*, an SMLE Mk I***, and an SMLE Mk V. They were enjoyable, therapeutic projects. I made myself a New Years resolution not to rescue any more rifles.

    Well, I made it exactly 17 days into 2022 before breaking that resolution. The owner of a local gunshop called me and said he had a sporterized Enfield for sale. He said it was an Indian produced rifle. I was mildly interested until he said it had a "weird peep sight" that folded along the left side. This immediately got my attention. I asked if the rifle had a charger bridge, and he said it didn't. I asked if the serial number began with a CR, an ER, or a G. He said it was a CR prefix serial number. Later, he texted me pics, and I couldn't believe my eyes; it was an Ishapore Mk I* IP later upgraded to I***, made in 1908. Only approximately 3000 were ever made. I made it over to his shop and wound up buying it for $300.

    Unfortunately, it had been horribly sporterized. The forend was in awful shape. When I took it apart, I saw the draws were pulp, so I knew I wasn't going to be able to salvage it. It was also missing the sliding charger guide for the bolt, the volley sight plate, a magazine, and other small parts. I had most of the parts needed (magazine, Mk I nosecap, cut-off). I also had an SMLE Mk III forend with volley sight cut-outs I had been hoarding for about 30 years. I pulled this out of the garage rafters and remembered why I hadn't used it earlier; it was in dire need of repair. So I set about repairing the cracks, draws, and patching in missing wood. I thought it was a shame to lose the original serial numbered forend. So I cut out the serial number, and used it as a patch in the stock where the SMLE Mk III sight base would normally occupy. I was able to source a sliding charger from a fellow collector, and between my spare parts bin and Apex Gun Parts, I was able to get this rifle back to looking like it should. As the CR-prefix Mk I***'s had many Mk III characteristics, it does look the proper part.

    Hope you enjoy the pics.


    The rifle as i bought it.


    The wood repair, replaced draws, and patches.


    The completed rifle
    Last edited by smle addict; 03-06-2022 at 03:59 AM.

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    A Collector's View - The SMLE Short Magazine Lee Enfield 1903-1989. It is 300 8.5x11 inch pages with 1,000+ photo’s, most in color, and each book is serial-numbered.  Covering the SMLE from 1903 to the end of production in India in 1989 it looks at how each model differs and manufacturer differences from a collecting point of view along with the major accessories that could be attached to the rifle. For the record this is not a moneymaker, I hope just to break even, eventually, at $80/book plus shipping.  In the USA shipping is $5.00 for media mail.  I will accept PayPal, Zelle, MO and good old checks (and cash if you want to stop by for a tour!).  CLICK BANNER to send me a PM for International pricing and shipping. Manufacturer of various vintage rifle scopes for the 1903 such as our M73G4 (reproduction of the Weaver 330C) and Malcolm 8X Gen II (Unertl reproduction). Several of our scopes are used in the CMP Vintage Sniper competition on top of 1903 rifles. 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.
     

  4. #2
    Legacy Member tatou's Avatar
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    Great work.
    My favorite part of the whole restoration is how you save the original Mk I*** serial number.
    Something is saved from the original one, even if you are the only one to know about it.... it says a lot.

    I've stopped saying ''this is my last one'' too ... now i say only those that are truly worthy haha
    At least you finish them... i now have 4 curent projects on my lap

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    Legacy Member 22SqnRAE's Avatar
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    Bloody great job!

    Standing applause from me.

    Well done!
    Trying to save Service history, one rifle at a time...

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  9. #4
    Advisory Panel browningautorifle's Avatar
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    Nicely done.
    Regards, Jim

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  11. #5
    Contributing Member Singer B's Avatar
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    Excellent work!!

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    Legacy Member frankderrico's Avatar
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    Very nice work.

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