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Longbranch No4 Mk1*

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Eagle1ohio View Drop Down
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    Posted: February 08 2020 at 4:49pm
I'm new here and new to Enfields.  I always wanted one, have had a "sporterized" Longbranch 1950 No4Mk1 given to me recently.  The previous owner had it since around 1995, fired it with corrosive SA 1960 vintage Mk7 ball ammo and let it sit in his basement for 10 years without cleaning it.  You can well imagine what the bore looks like.  I'm not sure it's currently safe to shoot.  Anyway, I'd like to restore it to original configuration.  I see Criterion has new barrels available and I've found fore stocks and hardware available.  Since I have no money at all in it so far I'm willing to spend a bit to bring it back to life. 
 
Any advice you might have is welcome.
 
Thanks!
 
Eagle1ohio
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britrifles View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote britrifles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 08 2020 at 7:09pm
Welcome from Atlanta GA. 

 Lots of experience here and some very knowledgeable folks on the correct configuration.  I would suspect the barrel is not salvageable.  But, by all means, clean it well, and then inspect it.  I don’t know about SA Mk 7 Ammunition, are you certain it had corrosive primers?

I’ve ordered a Criterion barrel myself, I should have it in a few days.  I’m also planning on changing out a barrel.  

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Marco1010 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 08 2020 at 7:19pm
I had a p14 barrel I couldn't even see down it was so corroded. Soaked it in 50/50 mix of vinegar and lemon juice (citric acid) for 3 days, each day would use a cleaning rod to work the rust out, masses of rust came out each time.
cleaned up to be a 8 out 10 bore in the end. takes all the blueing off is the only draw back.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Eagle1ohio Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 09 2020 at 7:56am
In a search for what the ammo was, I found that South African .303 Mk 7 ball was corrosive until the late 60s.  Pulled a round apart and found it was loaded with cordite.  Consistent with the description I found.  Headstamp is U 60 on top and Mk 7 on the bottom, loaded in the standard stripper clips and bandoleers. 
 
In any case, I scrubbed the bore with Kroil and steel wool to get the worst of the rust out.  I could finally see the rifling back but it's horribly rough.  I'd be afraid of stripping off the jacket of a bullet on the way through, and then there would be a bigger problem.  The heck of it is that the exterior parkerizing and the remaining wood stock are in great condition with very little wear.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote A square 10 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 09 2020 at 6:26pm
before you buy a barrel try to clean it and see what you have - then shoot it , then clean again , when you get done see how it shoots , shoot more than three rounds to determine this as it takes a little seasoning to get optimum , 

if that fails but the new barrel and switch it out 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote britrifles Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 09 2020 at 7:19pm
What as shame.  I bet that barrel was practically new before he fired that corrosive ammo.  I’m afraid it would very quickly form lumps of copper fouling.  

You could try to smooth the lands a bit with JB Bore paste.  But I’d be very surprised if you could get that barrel to shoot with any decent accuracy. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Shamu Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 10 2020 at 7:09am
FWIW all S/A ammo marked ".303" is corrosive, but the later A 80 "R1M3z" is not.
Don't shoot till you see the whites of their thighs. (Unofficial motto of the Royal Air Force)
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote englishman_ca Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 10 2020 at 1:25pm
Ya, seriously, do ten rounds rapid fire, twenty even better. Mad minute. Blast away and heat up the barrel until too hot to touch. Then clean the heck out of it.

Steel wool wrapped tight around a bronze brush, oil, and have at her. Drastic, but sometimes it works.

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Look to your front, mark your target when it comes!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Honkytonk Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 10 2020 at 2:40pm
I actually refreshed an ugly pitted barrel doing exactly that. It was no tack driver, but could consistently stick pills in a four inch circle at 100 yards.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Bear43 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 11 2020 at 3:41am
I have been in this position before with a Gew 98. It had a barrel that was in the same boat, shot corrosive and not cleaned. Looked like a sewer pipe. I did what Englishman described. While it was a pain to clean it did get 3" groups at 100 yards. I was happy with that and had it for quite a few years and a lot of rounds.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Eagle1ohio Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 12 2020 at 5:25am
Thanks for all the responses.  I think I’ll try the JB first.  If that might take care of at least some of the worst of the roughness I’ll put a couple rounds through it and reassess.  If it hasn’t stripped off a jacket maybe I’ll try the 10 rounds and steel wool. I’ll post the results here.  The weather isn’t too cooperative here at the moment.  

Eagle1ohio 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Whitjr Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 18 2020 at 5:45pm
I have cleaned barrels that I thought were lost to mis-use, that came back incredibly well.  Have a go at it using some of he techniques above listed.  You may very well be surprised!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote pisco Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: February 18 2020 at 6:29pm
clean it until you are sick of cleaning then get some cast bullets and roll them in talcum powder and fire lap the barrel 20-30 rounds should be enough
i have done a few barrels now and it works my old metal work teacher put me on to it
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Eagle1ohio Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 30 2020 at 7:31pm
Well I was able to get out to shoot this rifle, put maybe 30 rounds through it.  The old corrosive stuff that came with the piece.  4-5 inches at 100 yards.  Basically will hold the 9 ring on an SR1 target.  I was happy that it wasn't worse!  Time to get a set of dies and build some match grade ammo for it.
I'm looking for a forestock, handguards and metal now to bring it back from the sporterization status.  I found a complete stock set, Birch, for a No.4 Mk2 listed for $240.
 
Will that fit a Longbranch No.4 Mk1* ?  Personally I'd like to keep the nice dark walnut stock that it was issued with.
 
Earl
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Goosic Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: June 30 2020 at 7:55pm
The No4Mk2 stock will work. You might need to make some very minor adjustments to the inletting though. Do not over tighten the through screw once the the stock is in place. Ir would be advisable to make a little fitted wedge with a hole through it so as to not over stress the wood when tightening the screw.
You had mentioned that you are getting a 4-5 group at 100 yards.  I will assume this is through the open iron sights. I mention this because you said it could be worse. The next time out,after you place your shots on paper at the 100 yard mark,walk out to it and place your hand over the group. If the group is covered with the palm of your hand you have successfully put every round through a human heart from a distance of 300 feet.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Whitjr Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: July 01 2020 at 3:38am
you can find the stock parts at Numrich for less than purchasing that stock you wrote about.  Actuallly named Gun Parts Corp.  a very impersonal place, with decent availability and prompt shipping.


Let us see how your stock replacement turns out!

IMHO, if you are a match shooter, you may not be satisfied with your initial range result.  However, invest in some bright new ammo, you likely will see a better result.  I’m a hunter, not a match shooter, and I think I’d be satisfied with your first results given the age of the ammo you used.

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