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Help with stock marks and stamps on 1920 Lithgow

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mnt_rushmore View Drop Down
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    Posted: May 20 2013 at 5:04am



I'm posting several pictures of what I believe is a 1920 No. 1 Mk III* Lithgow (Australia).

I'm enjoying learning about this piece I bought on a whim at a pawn shop. 

I very curious about the various dates: 1920, 1941, and 8/47.

Thank you!
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Sarge View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sarge Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 20 2013 at 6:32am
The dates of '41' and '47' are when the rifle was in for refurb.
This is MY rifle, there are many like, but this one... is MINE!
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muffett.2008 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote muffett.2008 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 20 2013 at 6:53am
Actually, only the '47 date is a refurb, the program ran from 1946 to 1950 and was implemented to slowly adjust the workforce after the return of servicemen, while maintaining the skills gained during the war years.
 The in service maintainance programs saw rifles stamped with a return to stores stamp after rebuild from the rifles inception up until the commencement of the refurb. program.
  I should add this is probably only applicable to firearms that went through the hands of Australia and will include a fair quantity of British No.1 Mk.III's.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote paddyofurniture Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 20 2013 at 7:16am
Is this like a Australian "FTR"?
Always looking for military manuals, Dodge M37 items,books on Berlin Germany, old atlases ( before 1946) , military maps of Scotland. English and Canadian gun parts.
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muffett.2008 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote muffett.2008 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 20 2013 at 7:19am
The post war program was FTR
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Homer View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Homer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 20 2013 at 8:11pm
What else do you want to know mnt rushmore
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mnt_rushmore View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mnt_rushmore Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 21 2013 at 2:03am

I am so very grateful for the help you've given so far! I'm posting even more pictures of the same rifle. I examined it very, very carefully and found many more marks, mostly stamped in the metal (see below). Some I think I know about, and I'll post what I know:


The above shot is the serial number on the bolt handle. Not sure what the A means (Australia?).



Above is another shot of the serial number on a bracket that's part of the bolt assembly. Again the "A" is prominent, but I have no idea what the other marks above it signify. Are the older marks being covered by strike out marks done during a refurb?



The image above is another MA 47 mark on the underside of the bolt assembly. I assume it's connected to the R MA 8/47 stock mark from my previous post.



Above is a nice stylized R (?) at the top/front of the bolt assembly. The other marks visible are shown better in images below.



The R is still visible, but the other marks (left side of bolt assembly) are easier to see here. Lower right, another R. Another A in a crown like on the main Lithgow stamp on the right side of the stock behind the bolt, with a VII beneath it. Another A after a half arrow, with another VII below it. A shield-like stamp with ACP clearly visible.



On the back right side of the bolt assembly, there is a series of three marks. One appears to be another A in a star (maybe, see next picture below, too), then a number 10030 (after a slash mark and an offset Y?), and a W easier to see below, too.



The W (above) and another look at the stamp to the left/back of the 10030 (below):



The stamp is very small and hard to see, but it looks like the stamps that appear on the picture taken from the front of the rifle around the barrel opening (a few pictures down) and the stamp on the left back side of the bolt assembly (below). 



Another cool stamp on the left side of the back of the bolt assembly (above).



Stamps above and on both sides of the barrel (above).



Above, a -03 on the top of the front sight.



When the middle sight is flipped up, underneath are several stamped pieces. The first two appear to show another HV (high velocity?) above an SC. The next stamp to the right (toward the front of the rifle) is either 8W or M8.



To the front of the 8W is an OA. A website I found indicates this could stand for Orange feeder factory in Australia (http://home.earthlink.net/~smithkaia8/id3.html).



The final mark I found today is on the underside of the barrel: BA. The same website indicates if might be for the Bathurst feeder factory, also in Australia.

Again, I'm looking forward to the feedback from experts all over the world! Thank you to those of you in NC, England and New South Wales who have already helped me!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Bear43 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 22 2013 at 5:24am
I'm more familiar with all the marks and proofs of the British rifles. The Aussie marks are different but serve the same purposes. From the bolthead down:
 
1) The MA 47 may be when the bolt head was fitted or just a manufacturing mark.
2) I've seen that stylized "R" before on the knox form but have not remembrance of what it indicates. I am sure someone else will recall.
3) The marks on the left side of the receiver ring are inspection and proof marks more than likely.
4) The number on the right rear of the receiver is the assembly number. Lithgow rifles bear these numbers a lot. Other parts may carry the same number and from what I understand it was to keep the bits together prior to serialization.
5) Probably another inspection mark of sorts.
6) That start stamp is an inspection mark.
7) More inspection marks.
8) Inspection marks on the nosecap.
9) The -.03 is an indicator of the height of the front sight blade.
10) The "HV" over "SC" mark means the rifle was sighted and proofed to use the Mk VII ammunition.
11) The 8 and W may be inspection marks, not certain on those. On the rear sight spring, the OA does indicate an Orange Arsenal part.
12) Parts stamped with BA indicate Bathurst parts.
 
 
If I've gotten some wrong I'm sure our more knowledgable Lithgow experts will be along with the corrections. Most of the small marks on these rifles indicate parts manufacturers, proof of inspection or firing proofs.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mnt_rushmore Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 22 2013 at 7:29am
Thank you! This is fascinating.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sarge Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 22 2013 at 8:45am
mnt_rushmore...

If I were you, I would have the front sight attended to. Look at the comparison to see what I'm referring to.



The sight block has been botched, and is seriously off square.



The rifle serial number above = A52602.. should match in four places = 1) Bolt, 2) Breach, 3) On the underside of the rear leaf sight, 4) On the end of the Nosecap.





This is MY rifle, there are many like, but this one... is MINE!
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mnt_rushmore View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mnt_rushmore Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 22 2013 at 10:55am
Sarge, you are worth more than a General to me! Thank you for the great information. I will see to the front sight block.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Homer Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 22 2013 at 10:55am
A rifle refurbished af lithgow during the period that this rifle supposedly was, that is between second half 1945 to 1947 may not and probably wont be serial numbered on all the parts that usually are. Barrels, sights, wood and nosecaps were mostly unnumbered. I'm a little scepticle about this rifle because of the metal finish that would be parkerised if it were refurbed at this time. I've only viewed these pictures from my phone so pictures are small but I'm not sure thd finish of this gun fits the bill.

Just had another look and it probably is parkerised.

Gees Sarge, what happened to the barrel on your rifle pictured? I'd sack the gunsmith who crowned that oneTongue
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote mnt_rushmore Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 22 2013 at 11:10am
Homer, I take your suspicions seriously and will happily take and post other pictures if you don't see what you want upon closer inspection with a larger screen.

I have not cleaned nor fired the rifle yet - just worked the bolt (which doesn't spring back as well as I expected it would after viewing some very well made Mk III* videos on You Tube) and trigger, but the rifle nevertheless seems serviceable.

True to your suspicion, I have only found the serial number in the two places pictured. There is certainly no number nor stamp at all on the nosecap save the inspection marks on each side of the sight.

I have only seen one other parkerized gun before (an old, refurbished 1911) and am not a good judge of that finish, though I know some folks around here who would know it when they see it. I'll wait for your feedback before searching them out.

The seller made no representations to me and didn't even know what a Lithgow was. I'm OK with what I have - just curious about what I can learn about it! I'll definitely be acquiring more.

Thank you for your time and expertise!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote muffett.2008 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 22 2013 at 2:09pm
Quite a mix of marks,
 1. Bolt handle S/N.should match action as yours does. The number under the bolt handle is an assembly number and should be 10030 to match the action, these numbers were stamped before completion and were to keep main components together prior to completion and a serial number issued.  The A prefix to the S/N indicates the second lot of 99,999 rifles and is a useful indicator for collectors to establish a correct timeline, yours puts it about halfway through the financial year. 
 2. Crossed out unit indicator number.
 3. Bolthead date, fitted at refurb.
 4. Stylised R indicates rust and is to be inspected by an armourer - refer page 78, THE BROAD ARROW. this R is very similar to one used by Westley Richards, he also provided barrels, as you have not provided pics of the barrel markings under the top rear handguard, it is difficult to say for sure, although pic. 5. shows it has had a replacement barrel along with inspection marks and upgrade to Mk.VII stamp.
 6. Assembly number and viewers mark.
 7. The A within the star are early viewers stamps, pre 1925.
 11. Foresight height stamp.
 12. High velocity, short cone.
 13. OA is for the Orange SAF No.3 and is post 1941.
 14. Nosecap is from Bathurst SAF No.2 and is post 1941/2, these components would have been replaced at Refurb. in '47 or earlier when the butt was replaced in '41.

 If you remove the top handguard and post pic's of those markings, it will enable us to tell more about the barrel and when and where it was replaced.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote muffett.2008 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 22 2013 at 7:18pm
With the handguard removed, we should see this type info, as on this 1920 Lithgow.    
Note the barrel date stamp, proof marks, viewers marks and Lithgow stamp.

This side shows matching S/N and inspection stamps.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Sarge Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 22 2013 at 7:57pm
Homer...

In connection to the front sight end-view comparison shots, the left-hand one is that of 'mnt_rushmore's' thread subject. It looks to me (as indeed you indicate), that the replacement barrel has been set with the sight block canted. Whoever has carried out the work, has chamfered the block to bring sight blade somewhat onto a level keel. I suspect that this has not been carried out professionally, but by a self-help enthusiast.
This is MY rifle, there are many like, but this one... is MINE!
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