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No. 1 Mk III markings

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Matt View Drop Down
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    Posted: March 07 2006 at 5:01pm
Hey all:
I've been looking at purchasing a No.1 MkIII
Australian1941 SMLE and it has some markings on the Bridge Charger Guide that begin IA. Indian Army? The rest of the markings are difficult to see in the photograph. Does anyone have an idea what this means?  If I'm not mistaken, aren't there five serial numbers: bolt, receiver, forestock, nose cap and barrel?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote N/I\Z Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 07 2006 at 6:49pm

"bolt, receiver, forestock, nose cap and barrel"

Don't know about the forestock - sounds more like a Long Branch No 4 thing.

Even if the barrel has been replaced, if it has been done while still with the military, the new barrel should have been numbered to the rifle.

If the nose cap has been replaced, it will not match.  It might be un-numbered. But an un-numbered nose-cap might be original.

It is preferable that the bolt matches the receiver, especially if you intend shooting the rifle.

Where is this mark on the charger bridge? On the top? On the side? Which side?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Cookie Monster Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 07 2006 at 10:39pm

Matt,

If it is an ISA inside a circle yes it is an Indian Army issue. If it is an IIG with an arrow its an older Indian issued rifle. I Arty is the Indian Artillery, IAC Indian Armoured Corps. ICC Imperial Camel corps. IG is the Irish Gaurds. and IY is the Imperial Yeomanery.

I hope this helps

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Matt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 08 2006 at 8:01am
N/I\Z,

The mark is on the right side of the charger bridge where it meets the stock.  Since the seller didn't give me a clear answer on the nosecap and rear sight leaf serial numbers, I wonder if this is one of the Lithgow fakes or just unnumbered as you say.

Cookie Monster:

The markings read: IA space C (or G)O space S(or 8)AC space CA

Any ideas? Thanks guys.

Matt
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Cookie Monster Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 08 2006 at 8:40am

Matt,

Ok I will look into it for you. Just behind the trigger gaurd is there an marks there in the wood on the stock?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote #4Mk1(T) Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 08 2006 at 2:59pm
Are these marks below or inside a small 6 pointed star? If so they could be the Lithgow inspection marks.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Matt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 09 2006 at 12:59am
Cookie,

No marks behind the trigger guard, but on the butt is what seems to be a 6/45 and another set of three or four mostly illegible marks further back just behind the roundel (a plain brass disc with a brass screw through the middle) the last two which appear to be IN. I thiink this may have been manufactured in Lithgow and sent to India.

#4Mk1(T),

No, I haven't seen a star in the photos and there are only three photos of the left side of the gun. I do see what appear to be proofers' marks on the bolt handle - an X of some sort and on the locking bolt seating where the bolt handle lies in the locked position. These are  J 3 above the MA LITHGOW S.M.L.E. III 1941.

Also on the left side of foremost band of the bolt housing guide are some marks:
ΛAOA (or4) on the first line and ??? followed by VII on the second line.


Edited by Matt - March 09 2006 at 1:25am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Cookie Monster Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 09 2006 at 3:18pm

Matt,

Can you get any Photos?

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Matt Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 09 2006 at 7:36pm
Cookie,

I've got some photos. Also, the gun has been refinished, the nosecap and rear sight leaf don't have serial numbers and the gun has not been fired.  Seller is asking $375 which I think is too steep. Think that sounds like a good price? I can send you the images to your hotmail address if you want.

Matt


Edited by Matt - March 09 2006 at 7:43pm
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Cookie Monster Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 09 2006 at 10:07pm

Matt,

$375 is on the high side unless you have a excellent find.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote allan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 11 2006 at 6:00pm

hey guys,

my names allan and obviously im new here...thought id join up. i own a lithgow 42 no1 mk111*. this rifle has all markings matching D 40400. just a quick ?. the bolt has the lithgow star with the same serial..under the star it has OA 42. did these rifles get made/inspected by the two different  factories? requiring both marks? thanks for any replies in advance.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote N/I\Z Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 12 2006 at 11:07am

Trying to keep this as simple as possible.

Up to 1941, the only factory making arms in Australia was Lithgow (mark "MA").

In 1941, Bathurst Rifle Factory No 2 opened making parts for Lithgow (mark "BA").

In early 1942, Orange Rifle Factory No 3 opened, initially making parts and barrels, and taking over rifle assembly from Lithgow later in 1942 (mark "OA").

In June 1942, the Forbes and Wellington Feeder Factories (marks "FA" and "WA") started making small components to supply Orange.

Slazenger started making wooden furniture for Lithgow in 1941, then Orange when assemblt transferred there (mark "SLAZ").

And, for completeness, J Ludowici Ltd, Sydney, made leather bayonet scabbards (mark "MANGROVITE").

reference: "The Lee Enfield Story" by Ian Skennerton, an Aussie and all-round good bloke!

So this is why it is not unusual to have markings from multiple factories on one rifle. The same applies to British No 4s which used components made ALL over England.

 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote allan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 12 2006 at 8:40pm

 hello N/I\Z,

 thankyou so much for your insight, it certainly makes sense what you say and the book you refer by ian skennerton sounds like a must have item. i have only recently purchased my smle and its a start to hopefully a large collection..hence my knowledge is limited and will grow with time, and with all the reading i do on web sites...

cheers once again..

 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 12 2006 at 9:23pm
G'Day Allen welcome to the site  Great Old clunckers the MKIII's  I'm real fond of em

      Dave
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote N/I\Z Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: March 13 2006 at 2:39am

allan - no insight. I just pull the book off the shelf, find the right page and start typing.

 

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