Do you have an Enfield etc, to avoid excess. wear?

Discussion in 'Curio & Relics Forum' started by Laufer, Nov 7, 2010.

  1. Laufer

    Laufer Member

    Jul 27, 2008
    West TN.
    After buying my first LE #5 in May '09, bought an original #4 that summer, to avoid too much wear on the #5. Then found a second, really good #5 in Sept '09.

    Depending what "excessive wear" means, what are your views regarding which rifles to shoot the most often?

    My shooting skills are not developed (interest bloomed late in life), therefore don't like the sights of my original Yugo (only) Mauser compared to these other rifles' sights.
    Use the Yugo sometimes, only because the ammo prices are cheap and very stable over the last year. This also helps reduce wear on other guns.
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2010
  2. Jim K

    Jim K New Member

    Dec 6, 2009
    How much shooting do you do? The No. 4 and No. 5 rifles are pretty sturdy and it would take a lot of shooting to cause excessive wear in the operating sense. Of course, from a collector's viewpoint, No. 5's are uncommon enough that heavy finish wear will reduce the value significantly.


  3. group17

    group17 Member

    Apr 30, 2010
    Since you don't like the sights on your Yugo did you ever think about a non drilled scope mount. Made a world of difference to my "old eyes" shooting with a scope.


    The mount takes the place of the back sight ladder and can easily be put back to original condition without harming the value of the rifle. You will like shooting it a lot more IMO. Save on over using those "special" Enfields.
  4. oscarmayer

    oscarmayer New Member

    Jun 24, 2008
    you'd be hard pressed to wear out a lee enfield, keep in mind the #5 will not soak up the recoil a "regular enfield will, i have seen some stock cracking on a few jungle carbines now was it because of poor handling or excessive shooting ? don't know but i do know the recoil is felt more on a #5 .....
  5. jim brady

    jim brady Well-Known Member

    Sep 22, 2009
    Simla, Colorado
    Pretty hard to imagine "excessive wear" on an Enfield. If you had a minty Enfield, or any other historicaly signfificant weapon, I'd put it aside and let the collector value grow. But a run-of-the-mill military rifle is built to be fired LOTS. Just keep them CLEAN and take care of those corrosive salts and you'll be just fine.

    I have a 1916 mfg Enfield .303. It has been fired plenty. The bore was more than just a 'tad' rough when I bought it, so I fire-lapped it with bullets from Brownell's. Much better now. It was pretty dang dark. Still a little pitted, but a fine shooter for a .303. Good quality surplus .303 is almost dried up.

    Gotta agree with Oscarmeyer - the No.5 is lighter than the standard rifle, and they recoil harder. You do risk a cracked stock with full-patch loads with that old wood. You run the same risk shooting any old firearm.
  6. 45Auto

    45Auto Well-Known Member

    Apr 9, 2008
    I never heard of cracking the stock of a No.5 from shooting it. It's a short light rifle and so the shooter will feel the whipp and kick a little more, but the stock is as robust as any. The only time you might have a stock issue with the No. 5, No. 4, or any of the Lee Enfield line is if the stock bolt is not tight enough.
  7. oscarmayer

    oscarmayer New Member

    Jun 24, 2008
    it depends on how the gun was stored. if the wood has been allowed to dry out cracks become more possible. century arms is now selling enfields with cracked stocks , mishandleing perhaps, or maybe the wood has been allowed to dry and crack or was it excessive shooting with dried out wood ????
  8. grcsat

    grcsat Well-Known Member

    Oct 2, 2010
    The old 303 brit rifles have probably one of the strongest desighned butt stocks of any rifle made. To actully see one that is cracked from use is very rare. I myself have never seen one and trust me when I say that it is the most popular rifle in the north country.
    They will crack only if badly fitted or from really bad storage over a long peiod of time.

    Just my two cents.
  9. bbqznbeer

    bbqznbeer New Member

    Sep 9, 2008
    Ontario , Canada
    I've neen using the same No4 for nearly 40yrs...wear out ?
    I'll wear out
  10. Laufer

    Laufer Member

    Jul 27, 2008
    West TN.
    Gentlemen, thanks for the frank responses to my naive questions. The three Enfields are in really good condition.
    My ammo now is reloaded Prvi. Santa 'airdropped' the single-stage Lee gear a year ago.
    The only problem is that in about fifteen gun shows within an hour of Memphis ('08-'10), there were only about three total #4s /#5s which were not sporterized.

    Thanks for the recommendation. It's nice to know that it can be reconverted with no permanent changes, and will consider that.

    What I must have had in mind was reading many comments about Enfield bolt head numbers, and how the headspace seems to increase with lots of wear, as the bolt is gradually pushed back.
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2010
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