Need help IDing a US service rifle

This is a discussion on Need help IDing a US service rifle within the Defensive Rifles & Shotgun Discussion forums, part of the Related Topics category; Rifles aren't my specialty, I'm sure this will be simple for those of you 'in the know.' I've seen pics of it before but can't ...

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Thread: Need help IDing a US service rifle

  1. #1
    VIP Member Array paramedic70002's Avatar
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    Need help IDing a US service rifle

    Rifles aren't my specialty, I'm sure this will be simple for those of you 'in the know.' I've seen pics of it before but can't find now. Doesn't look like any pics I have found.

    A coworker showed me this rifle, which has been in his closet for years, and was previously owned by his uncle. It's a bit rusty.

    Bolt action, short so probably a carbine
    Box magazine sticks out to about level with the trigger guard
    Magazine release inside trigger guard
    When cocked a rectangular thingy sticks further out the rear of the bolt
    Top left of receiver stamped US PROPERTY
    Left side receiver stamped NO 5 M 4 I
    Left side near trigger:

    Serial #
    5
    1942

    A different number on rear of bolt handle
    No caliber marking
    No manufacturer marking
    Missing rear sight
    Missing front sling attachment

    So my questions are:

    What is it?
    What does it eat?
    What else of interest?

    Thanks!
    "Each worker carried his sword strapped to his side." Nehemiah 4:18

    Guns Save Lives. Paramedics Save Lives. But...
    Paramedics With Guns Scare People!

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  3. #2
    Member Array threeLegDog's Avatar
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    Anthony

    Current EDC: Glock 23

  4. #3
    Senior Member Array BlackPR's Avatar
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    Look really close... are you sure that marking doesn't say: "No 5 Mk I" instead of "No 5 M4 I"? I'll bet it's a Lee Enfield Jungle Carbine.


    ----EDIT----

    The more I read it, the more I'm sure you misread the markings and it's a Lee Enfield No 5 Mk I... Here's something I found on another forum about it. The only thing that doesn't fit is the serial no... which would indicate it's maybe a conversion. But given the weird format of the serial number you posted, I would ask you to take a picture of it, close up, if you can. Provide a pic of the gun, too.


    No5 Mk1 specs ... by Tikirocker
    -----------------------------

    Overall Length = 3ft 3.5"

    With bayonet = 4ft.01"

    Barrel = 20.5" with flash hider.

    Bayonet overall = 12.0"

    Weight Rifle without bayonet = 7bl. 1oz ( 3.2kg )

    Rifle with bayonet = 8bl.3oz (3.7kg)

    Bayonet No5 = 7oz (.2kg)

    Barrel rifling = 5 groove

    Twist = Left hand 1 in 10 or 33 calibers.

    Sights Mk1 and MkII = 200-800 yards.

    Magazine capacity = 10 rounds - capable of 11 with one up the spout.

    Loading via 5 round charger clips, NOT from the magazine.

    Caliber. 303 in British.

    Production costs at time of production = Pounds 8/8/Od.


    No5 MK1 Jungle Carbine FAQ's.
    --------------------------------

    1# - What factories made the No5 rifle?

    Ans - Only two factories ever made the No5 Mk1, Royal Ordnance Factory ( ROF )Fazakerley ( F ) in Liverpool and BSA Birmingham Small Arms ( M47C )



    2# - What manufacture codes should be present on the parts of my No5 Mk1?

    Ans - See answer to question 1.



    3# - Where do I find the manufacture I.D on a No5?

    Ans - All manufacture information, dates and serial numbers are found on the left of the receiver and are electro pencilled not stamped.



    4# - My No5 doesn't seem to have any markings at all, what now?

    Ans - In some cases the markings are very faint and barely noticeable at all - this is especially the case with many BSA rifles where it's common to only find the M47C code to identify it.



    5# - Where should I find matching serial numbers?

    Ans - On the left of receiver, on the rear flat of the bolt, on the left of the barrel knox form and magazine also stamped in the stock in some cases. In less common cases you may find the serials E/P'd on other parts such as the inside of the trigger guards.



    6# - What is the story with overlapping serial number codes and dates?

    Ans - Fazakerley was running three assembly lines at once for No4 rifle production in WW2 but these lines each had their own letter code sequences, so the multi-line system is easy to see. Perhaps the explanation for the wild letter prefix overlaps is this three line system operating without the special letter codes, which would look like chaos with lots of anomalies?


    7# - How many digits do No5's have in their serial numbers?

    Ans - Usually you will see a 4 digit serial code system on 99% of Jungle Carbines but there are instances of 3 letter codes and there will likely be 2 letter codes also. The main point here is that 4 is the biggest number you will see. If you have a rifle with a 5 digit serial number then you will likely have a No4 conversion and not a No5.




    8# - What are the major clues to identifying that my No5 rifle is real and not a fake?

    Ans - In no particular order you should check that ...

    # - Your bolt head is hollowed out.

    # - Remove the handguard and check that your barrel knox form has the lightening cuts that are unique to this rifle.

    # - Check that the rear sight is the correct type Singer style Mk1 or Mk2 sight with a max setting of 800 yards and not 1300 yards as found on No4 back sights.

    # - A fast check for the novice is to look at the receiver from the left side and see if it has a distinct step beneath the back sight. If it does not then this is a No4 receiver or even maybe a No1 receiver.

    # - You will not find the rectangular lump on the front right side of the receiver wall unlike a No4 receiver.

    # - The action cover loop of the No5 trigger guard is a rounded loop and waisted unlike the even U of the No4 cover.

    # - Your rifle should have a conical flash eliminator at the muzzle end with bayonet lug beneath.

    # - The butt stock should not look the same as a No4 or No1 butt stock. You will see a distinct groove on the rear right side of the stock with a unique D shaped steel sling keep protruding.




    9# - What is all this about a wandering zero?

    Ans - Back when the No5 was still being manufactured there was a period of time when the No5 was seen as being the logical successor to the No4 rifle as the standard battle rifle. After performing various trials it was ( apparently ) reported that the No5 would not hold it's zero and under certain circumstances would lose it altogether. More trials were conducted and there were various reports of the lightening of the receiver being a cause of the issue as well as stocking up in some instances.

    In the context of the period the rest of the world was moving toward SLR or Self Loading Rifles and it is now largely believed that the Wandering Zero story was an expedient means of the MOD justifying re-tooling and scrapping the No5 to the Government bean counters so they could move to the SLR. After all the trials and R&D that had already been done for production of the No5 they needed an excuse for this change as Britain was now also facing a struggling post war economy unlike the U.S. It is now widely held that the Wandering Zero was the excuse they required. Few if any No5 owners today find any accuracy issues with their rifles and fewer still can replicate the wandering zero - it is believed to be a created myth ( That all No5's suffered with innacuracy ) and this seems to be well supported by the many owners who can not find any evidence of it.

    It is widely believed that the effects of the so-called wandering zero were environmental - the sheer volume of damp, rain and humidity found in Burma is now understood to be the culprit as when the furniture of the rifle was repeatedly swelling and drying out it would cause shifts in the bedding of the rifle relative to the receiver; this in turn would cause erratic shifts in accuracy. Under heavy or sustained fire the stocks would heat up considerably after being soaked for long periods and not having chance to dry out properly.

    In later years during and after the Malayan Emergency the Malays decided to finish their No5 Mk1's with lacquer to stop moisture and damp from entering the furniture - lessons well learned from the Burma experience; the correct finish for all Lee Enfield rifles however is and has always been Linseed Oil. Linseed Oil works in just about every other environment as it is still permeable and not entirely waterproof ... most if not all Enfield's are usually finished with a wax to create the final barrier to moisture. In the case of Burma where torrential downpour and heat are a daily occurance, this method simply was not enough. Published British Armorers such as Peter Laidler have confessed that most No5's were as good as gold and I can vouch for the fact that I have no such accuracy issues with my own No5 Mk1.



    10# - What is the significance of the capped fore-end?

    Ans - We see the capped fore-end beginning in early 1946, so post war period. Some were found very early on ( 1944 experimental models ) but the majority are post war. As for significance of the fore-end, it was requested that a fore-end cap be introduced for protection of the fore-end itself and also to guard against moisture entering the end grain.


    PRODUCTION NUMBERS.
    =================

    ROF Faz - 169,807.

    BSA - Shirley - 81,329.
    The facts are indisputable. There is more data supporting the benefits of Conceal Carry than there is supporting global warming. If you choose ignorance, in light of all the evidence, in order to bolster your irrational fear of guns, you are a greater threat to society than any gun owner.

  5. #4
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    Does it have a flash "hider" like the collar they put on a dog to keep it from scrathing a wound ( or like the top of a martini glass)? Does it cock on opening or cock on closing the bolt?


    My money is on Blackprs Enfield jungle carbine.
    Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
    I took the one less traveled by,
    And that has made all the difference.

  6. #5
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    That was my first thought. I've got one.
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  7. #6
    Senior Member Array BlackPR's Avatar
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    This is the Jungle Carbine

    The facts are indisputable. There is more data supporting the benefits of Conceal Carry than there is supporting global warming. If you choose ignorance, in light of all the evidence, in order to bolster your irrational fear of guns, you are a greater threat to society than any gun owner.

  8. #7
    VIP Member Array paramedic70002's Avatar
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    It sure looks like that Jungle Carbine but no funnel on the muzzle, no bayonet mount, no metal band around the fore stock, no front sight wing protectors, more barrel exposed; less wood. Rear sling point under stock. May be aftermarket stock and sporterized.

    Need to get a pic and look at it again.

    So were these widely used by us? Is it WWII vintage since it has 1942 on it?

    I will forward this info to the owner.

    Thanks!
    "Each worker carried his sword strapped to his side." Nehemiah 4:18

    Guns Save Lives. Paramedics Save Lives. But...
    Paramedics With Guns Scare People!

  9. #8
    Senior Member Array BlackPR's Avatar
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    It was primarily a british weapon, not US at all, that I know of. Here's a history of it... it's all in 303 british:

    Jungle Carbine - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    As I said before it is probably a conversion, given the serial number.

    Here's some info on the Jungle Carbine:
    No5 MkI Rifle

    Pictures would definitely help. The stock should be a dead giveaway... if it's original, it has the slot on the butt of the stock. There should also be markings on the left side of the receiver like (ROF) or some such thing that indicates where it was made.

    Interested in seeing the pics. These are cool guns.
    The facts are indisputable. There is more data supporting the benefits of Conceal Carry than there is supporting global warming. If you choose ignorance, in light of all the evidence, in order to bolster your irrational fear of guns, you are a greater threat to society than any gun owner.

  10. #9
    Member Array Greg in VA's Avatar
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    If it's US Property marked, then it was made by Savage for the Brits during WW2. All of the weapons we sent them via Lend/Lease were marked this way. It sounds like it's been sporterized. The 5 on the reciever, could that be a block "S" (for Savage)?
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  11. #10
    Senior Member Array BlackPR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greg in VA View Post
    If it's US Property marked, then it was made by Savage for the Brits during WW2. All of the weapons we sent them via Lend/Lease were marked this way. It sounds like it's been sporterized. The 5 on the reciever, could that be a block "S" (for Savage)?
    I'm confused by this. We have two things that don't fit with a No 5. One I could forgive, two I can't.

    1. The serial number is okay for a 4, or a 4 converted to a 5.

    2. The US Property marking doesn't make sense (Thanks for bringing that up Greg, I had missed it entirely). The No. 5 was NOT made by savage, at all, ever. There ARE others who have seen No 5's with those markings, but they aren't supposed to exist. Savage did the Model 4 under Lend-lease, but never the No. 5.

    This leads some potential credibility to the "converted from a 4 to a 5"... Although I'm not sure if that was common, how common it was, etc.

    Pictures! Must see pictures!
    The facts are indisputable. There is more data supporting the benefits of Conceal Carry than there is supporting global warming. If you choose ignorance, in light of all the evidence, in order to bolster your irrational fear of guns, you are a greater threat to society than any gun owner.

  12. #11
    VIP Member Array paramedic70002's Avatar
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    OK finally got within camera range of the rifle. It has been sold to another coworker who coincidentally purchased his own Jungle Carbine recently, so now he has 2.
    Attached Images
    "Each worker carried his sword strapped to his side." Nehemiah 4:18

    Guns Save Lives. Paramedics Save Lives. But...
    Paramedics With Guns Scare People!

  13. #12
    Member Array Greg in VA's Avatar
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    It's not a jungle carbine...looks like a sporterized (cut down stock) No.4 MKIII SMLE (Short Model Lee Enfield) made in 1942.
    *************************************
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  14. #13
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    This may be helpful

    I found some extensive information on the Enfield's on Wikipedia here.


    Models/marks of Lee-Enfield Rifle and service periods

    Model/Mark In Service
    Magazine Lee-Enfield 1895–1926
    Charger Loading Lee-Enfield 1906–1926
    Short Magazine Lee-Enfield Mk I 1904–1926
    Short Magazine Lee-Enfield Mk II 1906–1927
    Short Magazine Lee-Enfield Mk III/III* 1907–Present
    Short Magazine Lee-Enfield Mk V 1922–1924 (Trials Only 20,000)
    Rifle No. 4 Mk I 1941–Present
    Rifle No. 4 Mk I* 1942–Present
    Rifle No 5 Mk I "Jungle Carbine" 1944–Present
    Rifle No. 4 Mk 2 1949–Present
    Rifle 7.62mm 2A 1964–Present
    Rifle 7.62mm 2A1 1965–Present

    List of manufacturers

    The manufacturer's names found on the MLE, CLLE, and SMLE Mk I—Mk III* rifles and variants are:

    Marking Manufacturer Country
    Enfield Royal Small Arms Factory Enfield United Kingdom
    Sparkbrook Royal Small Arms Factory Sparkbrook United Kingdom
    BSA Co Birmingham Small Arms Co. Ltd United Kingdom
    LSA Co London Small Arms Co. Ltd United Kingdom
    Lithgow Lithgow Small Arms Factory Australia
    GRI Ishapore Rifle Factory British India
    RFI Ishapore Rifle Factory India (Post-Partition)

    For the No. 4 Mk I, No. 4 Mk I* and No. 4 Mk 2 rifles:
    Marking Manufacturer Country
    ROF (F) Royal Ordnance Factory Fazakerley United Kingdom
    ROF (M) Royal Ordnance Factory Maltby United Kingdom
    B Birmingham Small Arms Co. Ltd United Kingdom
    M47C Birmingham Small Arms Factory (Shirley) United Kingdom
    Longbranch Longbranch Arsenal Canada
    US PROPERTY [S] Savage Arms U.S.
    POF Pakistan Ordnance Factories Pakistan
    -Bark'n
    Semper Fi


    "The gun is the great equalizer... For it is the gun, that allows the meek to repel the monsters; Whom are bigger, stronger and without conscience, prey on those who without one, would surely perish."

  15. #14
    VIP Member Array paramedic70002's Avatar
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    This info from the new owner:

    let them know it is NOT a jungle carbine.
    It is an Enfield no.4 mk1* the * is important as it describes the bolt release system, it does have the bayonet lug. both rifles were made by savage, just one is a 1942 (& sporterized) & one is 1943 with full walnut stock. the latter has all matching parts. Lots of good info tho. thanks! ps. still waiting on my scope mount to be delivered.
    "Each worker carried his sword strapped to his side." Nehemiah 4:18

    Guns Save Lives. Paramedics Save Lives. But...
    Paramedics With Guns Scare People!

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