1853 3-band Enfield

Discussion in 'Black Powder Shooting / Muzzleloaders / Handguns' started by michalsj, Sep 13, 2003.

  1. michalsj

    michalsj New Member

    Sep 13, 2003
    I am planning to buy my first BP rifle for shooting and hunting. I would like a replica of the 1853 Enfield and found several sources at a fairly wide range of prices. Are there opinions about the following choices or any other suggestions?: freeservers.com-$390; Brass Creek Trading Co.-$510; Armi Sport-$480; Navy
    Arms Parker Hale-$639. Thanks for your thoughts.
  2. inplanotx

    inplanotx Active Member

    Jan 28, 2002
    Welcome Michalsj to TFF. A lot of good folk around here. Pull up to the camp fire and sit a spell and I'm sure one of our resident experts will be along shortly. Glad to have you as part of TFF.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Sep 13, 2003
  3. armedandsafe

    armedandsafe Guest

    Just noticed that the Armi is down to $389. :D

    I don't have much experience with the re-enactoers arms as that period just hasn't interested me. I know there are a very few reproductions manufacturers who are turning out mediocre goods, but the most of them are turning out good firearms. Navy Arms has earned a very good reputation over the years as a reputable company with which to do business. High quality goods, excellent quality control, and good customer service. Their prices reflect that, also.

    I would not be afraid to buy a rifle from any of the better known sellers. Cabellas, Navy, Sportsmans Guide, Dixie, etc. They all buy from the same quality producers and merely use fit and finish to determine their prices.

  4. bigboom338

    bigboom338 New Member

    Mar 27, 2003
    South Dakota
    Welcome to TFF hope you enjoy the site.
  5. sewerman

    sewerman New Member

    Jan 22, 2007
    hurricane ally florida
    check out the C.W. reenactor forums.
    you can pick up a good used one .

    armisport seems to be more correct in appearence then the euroarms enfield.
    or you can purchase an early model (late 70-80's) parker-hale, made in england. the newer ones are italitian made.

    the correct minie ball for this weapon is the english prtichard smooth side minie. rapine bullet mold company is the only company that offers this mold at $110.00!

    u.s. model .575 minies will work but aren't correct.

    enjoy your rifle!

  6. jeanp1948

    jeanp1948 New Member

    Sep 26, 2007
    I was in the 20Th Maine Company "B" re-inactors from 1989-2002. I don't know anything about the Springfield's as the 20Th were issued 1853 three band Enfields in .577 caliber. I don't know much about Armisport but my Euroarms Enfield was a BEAUTIFUL rifle. Quality galore and accurate in live fire. Don't use the .58 Springfield Minnie's as I got one stuck that I had to bore out with a long drill rod half way down that long barrel.

    The wood was great, the blueing exceptional, and brass work wonderful.
    In 1992 I bought mine new in box for $350 but now got for over $550
  7. eklutna

    eklutna New Member

    Oct 21, 2007
    Florida Pan Handle
    I own a Army Sport Three banded Enfield and can hit a paper plate at 100 yards. This is good enough to kill any deer with the 500 grain 58 cal RCBS bullets I use. Sabots are even more accurate but are hard to find in 58 cal. I also own a 58 cal zouave Euro Arms and can not hit the wide side of a barn with that club.

    I recommend you buy the best rifled musket you can afford. Navy Arms Enfield is one of the best. Parker Hail is even better. The navy Withworth is even better. Stay away from the cheep re-enactors models. Some of them are only good for shooting blanks at reenactments (like my zouave).

  8. sewerman

    sewerman New Member

    Jan 22, 2007
    hurricane ally florida
    navy arms is an importer not a manufacturner.

    all of the replicas are made in italy, even the parker hale enfield. though now india and pakestan have entered the market.
    the armisport enfield has a lighter barrel and the stock profile is closer to the originals. the barrels on the euroarms are beefier because of proof/liability /import laws and since the euroarms were imported at an earlier date the barrels have stayed heavier then the later enfields. (most of these companys don't make a change once the arm is put into production.) . both are good rifles. armi is just more correct in appearence then euroarms. and closer to the correct weight.
    you can't go wrong if you choose to purchase off the authentic campaigner forum. these folks only buy top quality weapons and take very good care of their weapons. the mainstream reenactor sites can be good but you must know and beware.
    another good place is the gun auctions, especially the ones that lean towards modern weapons. usually the muzzleloaders go much cheaper on these sites since they aren't as popular.
    the zouave can be a good rifle and is quite popular with the N.S.S.S.A
    antonio zoli was one of the first makers to import. though not a true C.W. gun, they were bought up and used until the makers could get their act together to produce historically correct weapons. the zooie was over produced and made by every little off the wall itailian maker. it's easy to get a club. i bought mine as a kit from sears robuck in 1978 and it was very accurate. paid $87.00 and today you see them all over the auction sites misrepresented as anything from a german jager rifle to a true combat C.W. rifle going for $300 + . the mississippi rifle is very close to the remington zooie but did actually see combat both in the mexican war and war of northern aggression.
    nothing is written in stone and maybe some zooie's have been see in period images but for all due purposes they were not used in any worth while quantity. check armament supply lists if you find a zooie you'll be lucky.

    BTW i did a harpers ferry armory refit on my my old zooie by turning down the barrel to accept a 1842 socket bayonet and changed the frt barrel band to a mississippi rifle band mounted a brass sight to the front band, put a patch box in the butt stock and had a unique rifle. the only problem was the crescent butt plate. misssissippi rifles had a flat butt plate.
    but in 1980 nobody complained. sold the rifle and original 1842 bayonet for $200! wish i still had that bayonet :(

    enjoy your rifle
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2007
  9. mrkirker

    mrkirker New Member

    Jul 13, 2007
    I shoot traditional B/P in competition events with N-SSA, so I have seen, shot, and own several B/P muskets. The muskets used in our competitions must pass tests for safety as well as be 'dimensionally correct'. So, ANY firearm that is labeled N-SSA is gonna be true in design and reliability to the original. Not quite the Good Housekeeping seal of approval, but reasonably close :D

    Have you fired pattern '53? Like most muskets of the period, the 1853 Enfiled has a peculiar 'drop', in this case, very, very shallow. You gotta cock your head and neck like an Egyptian to get the sight line correct. The good news is that the rear sight is placed rather far up the barrel (a boon to us with old eyes!).

    Euroarm is a decent musket, however you will need to take the lockwork apart and polish everything, as well as do a trigger job to drop the pull weight to an acceptable level.

    Ditto with Armi-Sport.

    Stay away from the Packi and the Indian imports. While they WILL provide hours and hours of aggravation, they will never shoot worth a darn.

    You might very well skip a few steps and consider a musket from James River Armory. They import un-rifled units from Armi-Sport, get the barrel blanks rifled (seven, not three) by Whittaker, and generally 'tweek' the musket so that it's pretty well ready to shoot. Take a little tension off the sear spring and you are good to go! Good folks to deal with, too.

    I used an early English-made Parker-Hale two-bander (practically a re-ssue due to the 'borrowing of the tools and dies' from the British Museam by Parker-Hale) with good success till my neck got too stiff, then built a Fayetteville: more drop, but not as much as the Springfield issues.

    Several mini-ball molds are available on the open market for these .58 (actually .577) calibre muskets. You will need to slug the barrel or do the land and grove measurment so that you can purchase the correct sizing die for your musket. I used an RCBS mold sized to .575 (pure lead, with bees-wax and olive oil for lube) in front of 42 gr of 3-F Goex powder. Luckily, the same round and charge works in the Fayetteville.

    BTW, the Remington Zouie was a CW musket, issued to several Yankee groups during the war. Some of these originals are in competition use today with good results.

    Aim Fast; Shoot True!
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