A very nice gun indeed! It's as powerful as you need for hunting, fairly accurate and has one of the smoothest actions of any bolt rifle. I like the quaint styling too. The removable ten-round magazine is a real plus, and fivers are available for hunting.
basically, there are two types of Enfield actions - the No.1 MkIII with the open rear sight on the barrel, and the No. 4 MkI with the flip-up adjustable peep sight on the receiver. All other Enfields are variations of these two styles. Both are good rifles. Parts don't interchange between the two.
For sheer collectablility, I like the earlier No.1 MkIII designs, but for sheer shooting, the peep-sighted No.4 MkI takes the prize.
Ammo is easily available - even our local Wal-Mar carries the commercial stuff!
Tanker. Enfield #4 rifle rebuilt in 7.62x39 with an original barrel cut to 16.5" or 18" with original sights, our AK magazine adaptation, and modified original stock. $325!
With a new match grade barrel, $475.
The Jungle Carbine is a moderately rare rifle in a British reenactor's collection since it was only used in the Pacific Theatre. The 1st Airborne Division L.H.A. does on occasion take part in a Pacific battle once every couple years depending on availability of Japanese reenactors. The past few battles have taken part with a group of Japanese reenactors that travel all the way from Japan to participate! This rifle is not required for members.
Late in World War II, jungle warfare brought home the necessity of light equipment and simplicity. Though the No. 4 rifle was extremely resistant to rust, mud and rough treatment, it was still heavy and long. It was decided that a light, short carbine was needed to suit the demands of jungle fighting, the quick answer was to cut down the No. 4.
The No. 5 was light and short, and was probably the sexiest looking rifle produced during the war, with it's cut down stock and conical flash hider, complete with a rubber butt pad. The trouble came when it was fired. Being 2 pounds lighter than the No. 4 but firing the same round, it has a savage kick, coupled with a much louder, sharper noise and muzzle flash. Part of the procedures to lighten the rifle included shaving metal off of the receiver and from the Knox Form (end of the barrel next to the receiver ring). It was these cuts that are generally thought to have caused a wandering zero problem with this particular rifle, but the debate is still on, both as to whether it has a wandering zero and to it's cause.
If you can find a good Collector Grade, that would be nice indeed. My 1917-dated rifle was a bit well-used, though it cleaned up real nice. I did refinish the stock (personal preference), but I wouldn't have done with a real collector grade rifle. My second rifle is a wire-wrapped Indian of post-war make - it is undergoing restoration now. I'm stripping the stock and returning it to it's original pre-wire-wrapped state. The Ugly Duckling will hopefully be a swan. Purists - don't get your panties in a knot - these rifles are mine, and aren't of "collectable quality" to begin with.
For your friend, it sounds like he needs a really good one. I'd steer clear of SOG or Century - they have strictly "shooter grade" at best. Try AIM Surplus or Empire Arms (Dennis Kroh's company, IIRC) - they have much nicer guns! Good companys too.
Joe, the peepsight on the No.4 MkI has a large "battle sight" peep when folded, for general use. Flipped up, there is a smaller aperture on an adjustable slider - this is more consistent and accurate. I saw a feller here who drilled&tapped one and installed a target aperture - a very good shooter.
You could go the other way though - D&T the small peep and install a larger "ghost ring aperture" - that would be better for your eyes, and still decent accuracy. Better for hunting too, if you wanted to try it. I took a No.4 Mk.I hunting once, but it was equipped with a scope. I easily out-shot my buddy's brand-new .30-06!
I haven't handled a Longbranch, but I've heard good things of them.
My shooting buddy has a No.4 Mk.I made by Savage, and marked US Property.
It's in excellent condition, and is a very good shooter. These rifles always command higher prices in our gunshows.
I bought a No4 Mk IV JungleCarbine the other day, made in England 1947. $300 AUD. with the funnel shaped flash reducer and all.
Awesome gun, also bought a couple of boxes of remington express corelokt 180 grainers, fired 5 rounds and put them in the cupboard until deer season, dang things boot like mules.
I can get military surplus for 65 cents a shot, take them home and snip the tips off them, great bullets for everyday shooting, Kangaroos, dogs, ect.
Did anyone know that about about 3 or 4 milimetres of the bullet tips are packed with brown paper. I just thought that was weird.
The Canadian made LongBranches are considered the best made and are the most accurate of the #4 mk1's. That many were fitted with the Lyman rear target sites and used by the Canadian version of the NRA in marksmanship competition with little or no modification.
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