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Enfield action strength

Printed From: Enfield-Rifles.com
Category: Enfields
Forum Name: Enfield Rifles
Forum Description: Anything that has to do with the great Enfield rifles!
URL: http://www.enfield-rifles.com/forum_posts.asp?TID=10126
Printed Date: November 29 2020 at 3:37pm
Software Version: Web Wiz Forums 12.01 - http://www.webwizforums.com


Topic: Enfield action strength
Posted By: Long branch
Subject: Enfield action strength
Date Posted: November 21 2019 at 6:05am
This should be a sticky, I think. I'm tired of hearing how weak the enfield action is. Here's a stress test on a No.4 enfield chambered in 300 Win Mag.




Replies:
Posted By: Shamu
Date Posted: November 21 2019 at 7:01am
What says the Hive mind? Sticky or not?
Thumbs UpThumbs Down


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Don't shoot till you see the whites of their thighs. (Unofficial motto of the Royal Air Force)


Posted By: Goosic
Date Posted: November 21 2019 at 8:38am
Sticky


Posted By: Canuck
Date Posted: November 21 2019 at 9:27am
Sticky yes.

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Castles made of sand slip into the sea.....eventually


Posted By: Canuck
Date Posted: November 21 2019 at 9:52am
So, the take away with this test is non-destructive flaw testing the bolt before shooting 300 WM would be highly recommended.

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Castles made of sand slip into the sea.....eventually


Posted By: Zed
Date Posted: November 21 2019 at 12:19pm
Interesting video. Not convinced that the crack was a manufacturer's defect though. There are marks that show it has increase in depth over the years. Maybe initially caused by proof testing and just increased slowly ver the thousand's of rounds that have probably been put through the rifle.
Still it's very pleasing to see that when it failed, it was not dangerous to the shooter. The long lug doing it's job.

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It's nice to be important, but it's more important to be nice!


Posted By: Long branch
Date Posted: November 21 2019 at 2:02pm
Originally posted by Canuck Canuck wrote:

So, the take away with this test is non-destructive flaw testing the bolt before shooting 300 WM would be highly recommended.

My take away is that it lasted many decades firing 303 with that flaw. Then, it lasted a while in 7.62, which is a higher pressure cartridge. Then, it took 16 rounds of .300 win mag, 6 of them slathered in oil, to finally cause the already flawed bolt lug to break. Even then, that's not an action failure. The headspace did not shift throughout the test, which means that the receiver held up spectacularly. I wonder if it would have broken at all had the bolt not already been cracked.


Posted By: britrifles
Date Posted: November 21 2019 at 2:56pm
I agree, that initial crack was not a manufacturing "flaw".  While there would be a significant stress concentration at the lug to bolt body transition, it would not have been cracked at the time of manufacture; not even likely after the original proof test.  Given enough rounds of .303, the lug would have eventually failed, the .300 Win Mag loads just accelerated it.
 
Doesn't worry me though, shows that the action design is fail-safe with the long continuous locking lug. 
 
Goes to show that the No. 4 is perfectly safe to shoot 7.62 despite "warnings" that are out there.  
 
Bottom line:  Keep the chambers free of oil and keep the cartridges dry and bolt thrust loads are greatly reduced giving longer life.


Posted By: Shamu
Date Posted: November 21 2019 at 3:05pm
Testing to destruction is just that.
I can't believe thats a £50 rifle!
ARGHHHHHH!


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Don't shoot till you see the whites of their thighs. (Unofficial motto of the Royal Air Force)


Posted By: britrifles
Date Posted: November 21 2019 at 3:08pm
I can't believe how "worthless" they said these rifles are.  I'd pay some money just for that barrel!


Posted By: Shamu
Date Posted: November 21 2019 at 3:09pm
I know!
At those prices I'd empty Fultons & start parting them or something!


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Don't shoot till you see the whites of their thighs. (Unofficial motto of the Royal Air Force)


Posted By: Goosic
Date Posted: November 21 2019 at 4:20pm
I know I am using a 2A1 barrel on a No5Mk1 and No4Mk2 receiver accordingly with standard issue bolts and boltheads. To date the No4 has had 750 rounds through it and the No5 has had 550 rounds through it.  Both with my handloads of 40.0 grns of Norma 202,WLRM primers with the Sierra TMK 168grn  bullets with an advertised CUP of 49,500.
I have checked the headspace, bolts, boltheads and the receivers after every 150 rounds. Nothing abnormal, no cracks,and headspace still within specs of a NoGo gauge. The rear locking lug setup of these rifles do exactly what they are intended to do,period...


Posted By: A square 10
Date Posted: November 21 2019 at 6:15pm
very interesting and enlightening , sticky it , ive seen a lot of threads over the years that this might have answered quite nicely , 


Posted By: Zed
Date Posted: November 22 2019 at 3:55am
It would be interesting to see how a rifle with front locking lug's would fail. Would both lugs fail at the same time?
The long lug on the Enfield is an excellent safety measure for the shooter when it all goes wrong.

It would have been more interesting if they had examined the rifle a bit more before starting the shoot. I would like to have seen the bolt lug contact areas blued and tested. It is possible that if the small lug was taking more of the load, it may have initially started the crack over a long period of time.


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It's nice to be important, but it's more important to be nice!


Posted By: Shamu
Date Posted: November 22 2019 at 12:45pm
OK stickyfied four for ought.Clap


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Don't shoot till you see the whites of their thighs. (Unofficial motto of the Royal Air Force)


Posted By: Long branch
Date Posted: November 22 2019 at 5:46pm
Originally posted by Zed Zed wrote:

It would be interesting to see how a rifle with front locking lug's would fail. Would both lugs fail at the same time?
The long lug on the Enfield is an excellent safety measure for the shooter when it all goes wrong.

It would have been more interesting if they had examined the rifle a bit more before starting the shoot. I would like to have seen the bolt lug contact areas blued and tested. It is possible that if the small lug was taking more of the load, it may have initially started the crack over a long period of time.

He has another video in which he reads a passage from an original manual. It said that an oiled cartridge produced roughly twice as much force on the bolt as a dry one as measured by a crush guage.

The front locking actions tend to be a lot "meatier" than the enfield, so it would be hard to get a good comparison. I don't think that would really be relevant anyway. The point he's making is that the action is plenty strong for service cartridges.


Posted By: The Armourer
Date Posted: November 23 2019 at 1:05am
Originally posted by Long branch Long branch wrote:

Originally posted by Zed Zed wrote:

It would be interesting to see how a rifle with front locking lug's would fail. Would both lugs fail at the same time?
The long lug on the Enfield is an excellent safety measure for the shooter when it all goes wrong.

It would have been more interesting if they had examined the rifle a bit more before starting the shoot. I would like to have seen the bolt lug contact areas blued and tested. It is possible that if the small lug was taking more of the load, it may have initially started the crack over a long period of time.


He has another video in which he reads a passage from an original manual. It said that an oiled cartridge produced roughly twice as much force on the bolt as a dry one as measured by a crush guage.

The front locking actions tend to be a lot "meatier" than the enfield, so it would be hard to get a good comparison. I don't think that would really be relevant anyway. The point he's making is that the action is plenty strong for service cartridges.



It is interesting that when Ishapore produced the 2A (7.62) and they used 'improved steel' they found that during the proof testing that the action warped and the bolt locked up solid.

This happened with both the oiled-round and the dry round.
When they reverted back to the original steel (as specified for the No1 Mk3) the oiled round still warped the action but the dry-round was OK.
They amended the testing to 'drop' the oiled round test but never actually amended the test requirements.

This is why the 2A & 2A1 use the same steel as the No1 Mk3.


Posted By: Long branch
Date Posted: November 23 2019 at 1:34am
Originally posted by The Armourer The Armourer wrote:


It is interesting that when Ishapore produced the 2A (7.62) and they used 'improved steel' they found that during the proof testing that the action warped and the bolt locked up solid.

This happened with both the oiled-round and the dry round.
When they reverted back to the original steel (as specified for the No1 Mk3) the oiled round still warped the action but the dry-round was OK.
They amended the testing to 'drop' the oiled round test but never actually amended the test requirements.

This is why the 2A & 2A1 use the same steel as the No1 Mk3.

I've never heard that. It was always my understanding that the heat treating process was improved. 


Posted By: The Armourer
Date Posted: November 23 2019 at 2:50am
Originally posted by Long branch Long branch wrote:

Originally posted by The Armourer The Armourer wrote:


It is interesting that when Ishapore produced the 2A (7.62) and they used 'improved steel' they found that during the proof testing that the action warped and the bolt locked up solid.

This happened with both the oiled-round and the dry round.
When they reverted back to the original steel (as specified for the No1 Mk3) the oiled round still warped the action but the dry-round was OK.
They amended the testing to 'drop' the oiled round test but never actually amended the test requirements.

This is why the 2A & 2A1 use the same steel as the No1 Mk3.


I've never heard that. It was always my understanding that the heat treating process was improved. 


The old memory is slipping - the article states that with the 'correct'(original) steel the 2A stand up to both the oiled and dry tests.

An interesting article :

The article covers a host of subjects (and several pages) based around the Indian firearms industry and more specifically the ‘Proof House’, but of particular interest are a couple of paragraphs regarding ‘Enfield’s’.


Extract from “Gun Digest 33rd Anniversary 1979 Deluxe Edition”
Article Author : Mr A G Harrison
Qualification : Former ‘Proof Master’ of the ‘Rifle Factory Proof House, Ishapore, India’

From 1908 to 1950 all military bolt action rifles made at Ishapore were proof tested with a dry-round, followed with by an oiled proof round. The proof cartridge was loaded to 24 tons psi breech pressure, or 15% higher than the service pressure. In 1950 (after the departure, in 1949, of India from British control) the material for the rifle bodies was altered from an EN steel to SWES 48 steel with the recoil shoulder and cam recesses being heat treated. With this change the rifle receivers distorted when oiled proof cartridges were fired. This was discovered when hard and sometimes impossible bolt retraction was experienced. Large quantities of rifles were rejected.
To avoid rejections the authorities ordered discontinuance of the oiled proof round. Therefore from 1950 to the end of SMLE production, rifles made at Ishapore were proof tested with one dry proof only, although the specification still called for both dry and oiled proof. All bolts and bolt heads issued as spares were always proofed with a dry proof round only.

A bolt action rifle similar to the SMLE MkIII*, modified to fire the 7.62mm NATO cartridge, was produced at Ishapore, first in February 1965. The receivers were made of SWES 48 steel (as per the SMLE MkIII*) and with the NATO proof cartridge the receivers were found to distort with both the dry and oiled proof round. The material was changed back to the EN steel so now the rifles stand up better to dry and oiled proof. After passing proof the barrels are impressed with the Indian national proof stamp. The bolt handles and bolt head claws are struck with the crossed flags only.





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