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What is the cutout on the stock

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Category: Enfields
Forum Name: Enfield Rifles
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URL: http://www.enfield-rifles.com/forum_posts.asp?TID=10907
Printed Date: March 06 2021 at 12:03am
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Topic: What is the cutout on the stock
Posted By: Potato749
Subject: What is the cutout on the stock
Date Posted: October 22 2020 at 6:56pm
I purchased a 1942 Lithgow #1 Mk 3 this weekend at a show. I've been looking for one for a shooter and liked the price. The nose cap, receiver, and bolt numbers all match. The thing i don't understand is there is a rectangular cutout in the stock under the rear sight. Anybody know what this was for? I'm just learning about these. Always been an American arms person so first British war firearm.



Replies:
Posted By: WilliamS
Date Posted: October 22 2020 at 8:53pm
It sounds like your rifle is missing the protective ears for the rear sight. The metal ears are a single piece that tuck under the barrel and are fastened to the forend by a screw. A cutout on each side of the forend provides a gap for them.


Posted By: The Armourer
Date Posted: October 22 2020 at 11:36pm
As above - does it have the rear sight protector 'ears' ?



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Posted By: A square 10
Date Posted: October 23 2020 at 6:25am
or he is missing the fingers of one or both handguards they were often broken and removed , 


Posted By: Shamu
Date Posted: October 23 2020 at 7:08am
Maybe this comparison will help.
The "fingers" hide the sight base when fitted.
When I got the rifle they were removed so I replaced them with complete parts.
Either way is "correct", because many were intentionally removed because they were fragile. But I found it ugly & put the new ones on.



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


Posted By: The Armourer
Date Posted: October 23 2020 at 10:03am
Originally posted by Shamu Shamu wrote:

Maybe this comparison will help.
The "fingers" hide the sight base when fitted.
When I got the rifle they were removed so I replaced them with complete parts.
Either way is "correct", because many were intentionally removed because they were fragile. But I found it ugly & put the new ones on.


Whilst what you say is true, I would not relate the OP's statement :

The thing i don't understand is there is a rectangular cutout in the stock under the rear sight.

With "missing fingers"

'Missing Fingers does not leave a rectangular cutout in the forend (stock)


Posted By: Shamu
Date Posted: October 23 2020 at 11:45am
"'Missing Fingers does not leave a rectangular cutout in the forend (stock)"
How can you say that? You're looking right at a picture of one!


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


Posted By: shiloh
Date Posted: October 23 2020 at 12:03pm
Thats not a cut out in the forestock, thats missing fingers.
The notch under the rear sight protector would be a notch in the forestock.
Maybe if a pic was posted we'd have a better idea.

-------------
shoot em if you got em


Posted By: The Armourer
Date Posted: October 23 2020 at 1:35pm
Originally posted by Shamu Shamu wrote:

"'Missing Fingers does not leave a rectangular cutout in the forend (stock)"
How can you say that? You're looking right at a picture of one!

I can say it because it isn't a 'rectangular cut in the stock'.
It is pieces broken (cut) off the handguards.



Posted By: Honkytonk
Date Posted: October 23 2020 at 2:38pm
I wonder if, as the poster says it's his "first British war firearm" he considers any wooden piece on the rifle "part of the stock." Potato749, using the mug shots supplied by other members, can you point out the one that looks most like your culprit?


Posted By: Goosic
Date Posted: October 23 2020 at 5:24pm
Op quote: The thing i don't understand is there is a rectangular cutout in the stock under the rear sight. 

I think he is referring to the opening for the screw that attaches the ears to the forestock 


Posted By: Shamu
Date Posted: October 23 2020 at 5:40pm
I don't know. He says he's unfamiliar, so we're just putting up options to try & help him at this point.
It could be the missing fingers, the cut out for the front sight "ears" or something "Bubba" did.
Well find out more when he gets back to us.


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


Posted By: Goosic
Date Posted: October 23 2020 at 5:49pm
I am just guessing from the way it is phrased.  I believe he is missing the ears and figured out how to remove the forestock without cracking it and noticed the area that the ears sit in.


Posted By: A square 10
Date Posted: October 23 2020 at 5:54pm
um going to agree that the words "cutout in the stock" do lend more to the former than my latter suggestion , hopefully the OP will post a picture or verbally clarify , as shamu notes we are speculating at this point 


Posted By: Shamu
Date Posted: October 23 2020 at 6:01pm
"I can say it because it isn't a 'rectangular cut in the stock'."
But that is not what he said!
"The thing i don't understand is there is a rectangular cutout in the stock under the rear sight"
If he's unfamiliar with the Nomenclature, which he admits, it could be either.
We simply don't have enough info yet.
Once he sees the various images & alternatives he'll be able to help us to help him.


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


Posted By: A square 10
Date Posted: October 23 2020 at 6:07pm
hope he bothers to come back and look - the photos you posted tell it all , thanks for pitting an image of exactly why one needs to be concise in nomenclature and or clear about what they are describing 


Posted By: Potato749
Date Posted: October 24 2020 at 12:35pm
Sorry about all that guys. I never got a notification that the post had been replied to. Mine looks as if you took the ears off and the notch cut out for the ears was left open. if i look at the exploded parts view I'm missing part #31. Any good places to find replacement ears?


Posted By: WilliamS
Date Posted: October 24 2020 at 2:48pm
Originally posted by Potato749 Potato749 wrote:

Sorry about all that guys. I never got a notification that the post had been replied to. Mine looks as if you took the ears off and the notch cut out for the ears was left open. if i look at the exploded parts view I'm missing part #31. Any good places to find replacement ears?

I will look through my boxes to see if I have Australian made ears. Do you have the screw and nut to secure it?


Posted By: Potato749
Date Posted: October 24 2020 at 2:52pm
Unless they put the screw back in after they took the ears off I don't.


Posted By: The Armourer
Date Posted: October 24 2020 at 4:08pm
Originally posted by Potato749 Potato749 wrote:

Sorry about all that guys. I never got a notification that the post had been replied to. Mine looks as if you took the ears off and the notch cut out for the ears was left open. if i look at the exploded parts view I'm missing part #31. Any good places to find replacement ears?

I think most of us guessed that from your description.

It does help if you can get to grips with Enfield terminology as totally different rifles can have very similar part numbers or names. One of the classic mistakes is to confuse :

No1 Mk3* and No3 Mk1*, 

At a quick glance the eye doesn't recognise the diffrence, unless you are looking for it.

Welome to the confusing world of the Lee Enfield.


Posted By: A square 10
Date Posted: October 24 2020 at 4:43pm
"...Welome to the confusing world of the Lee Enfield...." 

this is exactly what made me sell off my extensive US collection [1888-1950] of longarms and dive head long into this world , never quite got the heart to sell my handguns tho , but i did dive headlong into webley and enfield revolvers as well as the inglis pistols , 

i agree with armorer we all 'thought we knew what you meant' but had to point out the other common things that might get interpreted from your presentation , please know its done in good form intending to educate those that lurk and read but never post as much as to inspire further discussion of the topic , you provided the vehicle we just went for the ride , i think enjoyed by all , 

"...No1 Mk3* and No3 Mk1*, ..."  great example of the confusing things that come from misunderstanding the nomenclature nuances , when you post these two - side by side its quite evident but many would look at the words and say "what difference does it make" as hillary clinton mentioned about bengazi , but we all know exactly what difference it makes 


Posted By: Potato749
Date Posted: October 24 2020 at 4:52pm
Well i appreciate the education. I thought looking at the gun something was missing and as soon as someone mentioned the ears protecting the sight it all clicked.


Posted By: WilliamS
Date Posted: October 24 2020 at 8:22pm
Originally posted by Potato749 Potato749 wrote:

Unless they put the screw back in after they took the ears off I don't.

I will check to see if I have a spare set of those as well, I'll be back in town Tuesday and can look then. There are two  circular holes in the bottom of the forend, one just behind the outer barrel band and one about halfway between the outer band and the trigger guard. If the screw and bolt are still there, they'll be visible in the second, rearmost hole.


Posted By: Potato749
Date Posted: October 24 2020 at 8:44pm
I looked and there is a screw in that hole tightened to something.


Posted By: Shamu
Date Posted: October 25 2020 at 7:17am
Glad we got that sorted. No worries.



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


Posted By: A square 10
Date Posted: October 25 2020 at 5:35pm
Originally posted by Potato749 Potato749 wrote:

Well i appreciate the education. I thought looking at the gun something was missing and as soon as someone mentioned the ears protecting the sight it all clicked.

on that happy note here is a very small education on the difference between the no1 mkIII* top photo bottom  rifle , and the no3 mkI* bottom photo bottom rifle 







all of the other rifles shown are different than the two called out and cited although the two top ones in the bottom photo are M1917s they are different in manufacturer and a couple other very subtle ways 


Posted By: Potato749
Date Posted: October 25 2020 at 5:53pm
I was going to say the #3 Mk 1 looks like the 1917 I have. Are they really  that different or is it just a naming thing between the British and Americans?


Posted By: Shamu
Date Posted: October 26 2020 at 5:49am
They are completely different in almost every respect.
The Mi917 is usually chambered for "thuddy-ought-six" & the No1 MkIII for .Free Oh Free British.
The M1917 is a Mauser action, the No 1 Mk III is an Enfield action.
The M1917 is a one piece stock, the No1 MkIII is a 2-piece stock.
Pretty much nothing interchanges!
There is an over all similarity but its superficial, the full length wood is common to both but not interchangeably.




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


Posted By: A square 10
Date Posted: October 26 2020 at 3:56pm
to add to what shamu mentioned the M1917 is similarly different in cartridge to the P1914 - yes they look alike at first glance but no they are not , 

the P1914 in addition to being made in 303 british was made in commonwealth tradition as 'non-interchangeable' they are fitted as the no1 mkIII* is individually with bolt mated to the receiver , the M1917 was to be interchangeable per contract , although winchester had many issues with that and the stocks for the M1917 are not interchangeable with the P1914 


Posted By: Potato749
Date Posted: October 26 2020 at 4:19pm
So basically the bolt could only be replaced by an armorer?


Posted By: The Armourer
Date Posted: October 27 2020 at 12:29am
Originally posted by Potato749 Potato749 wrote:

So basically the bolt could only be replaced by an armorer?

Very very few parts on a Lee Enfield No1 Mk3 are interchangeable without ''work'.

They were one of the last 'Victorian engineering' hand built rifles and parts were FITTED (fitted as in adjusted to fit each rifle).

This is why there are (should be) 6 parts of the rifle that should have all matching numbers. Each of these parts affects the functionality of the rifle and they are always kept together if the rifle is 'worked on'.

Nose piece
Forend
Rear sight bed / leaf
Barrel
Bolt 
Action

Bolts are very specific and you cannot just take any bolt and 'plug & play'. It is imperative that the two locking lugs on the bolt bear evenly with the two locking lugs in the action. It is these that are taking the 'tons' of pressure / recoil and if they are not evenly mated then one lug can take the recoil, and possibly shear off and then you have a bolt coming out the back of the rifle, at a fair rate of knots, heading straght for your head.

Bolts can be fitted correctly if you know what you are doing - its not that difficult you just need to have 'read the manual'.








Posted By: Potato749
Date Posted: October 27 2020 at 6:11pm
Okay. I assume you have to disassemble to check the number on the forearm. I don't see a number on the rear sight anywhere. Could it require some of the wood to be removed to see it?


Posted By: Potato749
Date Posted: October 27 2020 at 6:15pm
Also, does anybody know what the 2/45 and 10/54 stamped into the stock mean? Are these arsenal refurb dates?


Posted By: A square 10
Date Posted: October 27 2020 at 7:40pm
no , the number was generally on the back of the ladder of the sight , if the sight got changed out along the way it may not be there 


Posted By: WilliamS
Date Posted: October 27 2020 at 7:46pm
And the forearm number *should* be on the outside of the forearm just behind the nosecap, if replaced by an armorer. By the way, I do have an OA-marked sight ear. PM me with your address if you want it, say shipping and a five for it.


Posted By: shiloh
Date Posted: October 28 2020 at 6:23am
Originally posted by Potato749 Potato749 wrote:

Also, does anybody know what the 2/45 and 10/54 stamped into the stock mean? Are these arsenal refurb dates?


Dates maybe, though that might be too straight forward as far as enfields are concerned  lol


-------------
shoot em if you got em


Posted By: The Armourer
Date Posted: October 28 2020 at 6:32am
Logically they are dates, but why they are there could be for a myriad of reasons.

One reason could be that :
Every year a percentage (10% or 20% ?) were taken out of the armoury / stores and fully checked, then marked to show they had been inspected, then returned to stores. Could this be the date(s) it was inspected ?

If it was due to having a 'refurb' or major parts parts replaced there would be a marking (such as FTR) alongside the date. (Or, in the case of India FR)




Posted By: Potato749
Date Posted: October 28 2020 at 6:13pm
Okay. I can't see a serial number but the back of the leaf is stamped WA above the numbers 43.

There is something in the stock just next to the nose piece but i can't make heads or tails of what it is.



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