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Remembered Today:

.303 Oil Bottles


Captain Dave
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Gents, does anyone have any info on the oil bottles stored in the butt of the .303? I'm looking to date a brass one, but don;t know if any mods were made to them, marks etc, or even when they used them from!

Thanks

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This website should give you the info you are looking for:

Enfield Stuff

And here is a picture of some of my own bottles. Left top right: brass Mks. I, II, III, IV, and finally two different examples of the plastic Mk. V.

oilers.jpg

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What an awesome site. Thanks very much. I can now put hand on heart and say I have a Mk IV Oiler manufactured prior to 1925 in the ROYAL SMALL ARMS FACTORY - ENFIELD, Middlesex, England. It will sit nicely in my 1918 Lithgow SMLE. :)

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  • 3 weeks later...

The Mark 1 oil bottles are extremely rare. I have only examined two, both of which lacked any inspection or broad arrow marks on the base. May I ask if the one in the photo has any markings on the base, and if so perhaps you could post a photo of same? Thanks.

Regards

AlanD

Sydney

p.s. first post on this forum - been 'lurking' for a while.

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Tony

For witch one I should have to look to complete my Long Lee

Kind regards

Patrick

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It depends on the rifle and the date. If it is a Metford then a Mark I or II. If it is an Enfield than a Mark II or III. Check the Enfield Stuff site given above against the date of your rifle to see which Mark of oiler is applicable.

REgards

TonyE

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The Mk.I oil bottle is marked, it's worn but I've cleaned it up and it's got a Sparkbrook Roman "B" inspection stamp.

post-8322-1249907266.jpg

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The Mk.I oil bottle is marked, it's worn but I've cleaned it up and it's got a Sparkbrook Roman "B" inspection stamp.

post-8322-1249907266.jpg

Hi John Thorne, i'm Alessandro and i'm new to the forum.

This is the first MKI oiler that i see on the web! I wish i could have one to complete my british oilers collection! :D

Finding one MkI here in Italy is almost impossible. May i ask you if it came with the rifle or as a spare? A friend found in Italy 2 or 3 N1 MKIII in a lot of a thousand that still had MkII oilers into the buttstock, even if it's not the correct oiler for that rifle but a MkI should be too long to fit in the N1.

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Hi Alessandro and welcome to the Forum

Were these the rifles from the Italian Navy stock that were recently surplused?

Regards

TonyE

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Hi Alessandro and welcome to the Forum

Were these the rifles from the Italian Navy stock that were recently surplused?

Regards

TonyE

Hi TonyE

thanks,

yes, they were.

The first year this rifles of the italian navy came on the market a lot of scarce ones were available: N1s with volley sight, "dispersal" N1 from WWII, Lithgow with beautyful markings, plenty of N4s in brand new condition etc.

Now few interesting SMLE are still available and the ones with serial numbers matching are getting scarce (this according to what i know..). I took a N1 MKIII* "peddled scheme" made in 1918, all serial matching, two years ago. Now i'm saving money for a Lithgow Smelly...

The N4s i saw in 2007 for sale were so good to look fake! I have a Longbranch in mint condition who was still coated in cosmoline.

I don't know how it works for overseas customers, here you can ask to the dealer who sells this rifles what you are looking for and then buy the rifle by your armourer (no direct selling dealer/customer in italy)

cheers B)

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This is the first inspection maked Mk 1 I have seen. I can only assume the two unmarked examples I have examined were commercial items intended for the Volunteer market. The Mark 1 oil bottle is as rare as hen's teeth; doubly so ordnance marked examples.

Regards

AlanD

Sydney

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The Enfeild Stuff website is very good but not complete. Checking my bottles I have a III that has the crown, AH and the B but this is not on the website. I'll e-mail them a photo.

John

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The Enfeild Stuff website is very good but not complete. Checking my bottles I have a III that has the crown, AH and the B but this is not on the website. I'll e-mail them a photo.

John

Hi John,

in my ipinion it is almost impossible to have a "complete" collection of british oil bottles. Every month i discover something new. I started years ago with a JJB, a gift from a friend, now i have hundreds of british oilers and i keep finding interesting ones.

Enfield Stuff is a GREAT website, but, as you wrote, it is not complete. Apart from the "government" markings, there were contractor markings for the military oilers and for the commercial oilers. But you can find also markings made by shooting clubs, strange markings on ther body, rack numbers, regimental numbers, rifle serial numbers, regimental letters and numbers....and then there are the severals inspector stamps! Just to make an example: you can find a VSM oiler (vikers sons &maxim), I have one marked with BSA inspector and another with Sparkbrook inspector, but you can find also examples with numbers and letters on the cap, and the inspector stamps may be very different even if from the same factory, so you can find more than 10 versions of the same oiler :lol:

Not to mention the "foreign" oilers, like the south african ones, wich may have electric pencil markings on the body, rough construction etc... :o

I think no other rifle accessory is so interesting like the brit oil bottle is, i believe that even fake oilers exist!

cheers,

Alessandro

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Alessandro

Great to hear from a real enthusiast. Welcome to the forum.

John

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Alessandro,

Welcome to the forum from me as well. I bought the Mk. I oiler on eBay some years ago. The owner didn't know what it was and had misidentified it, but it looked very Mk. I-ish to me, so I took a chance and got lucky.

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This website should give you the info you are looking for:

Enfield Stuff

And here is a picture of some of my own bottles. Left top right: brass Mks. I, II, III, IV, and finally two different examples of the plastic Mk. V.

oilers.jpg

Hello John,

Perhaps you can help me ID this oil and patch container. It's larger than the SMLE or No 4 oilers, I should have put one alongside for comparison. Dimensions are; Length O/A 6", Width 3/4". Made of plated brass. The patch container end cap has a leather insert. Any information gratefully received, it's been in my 'unknown' box for years?

Cheers,

navyman.

PS For some reason I cant upload pictures to this forum despite being much less than the 2MB limit. The three I was trying to send were 49.7KB, 62.7KB, and 47.9KB respectfully? I have no problems on any other forums. Will try to sort this out, sorry if there are no pics.

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Alessandro,

Welcome to the forum from me as well. I bought the Mk. I oiler on eBay some years ago. The owner didn't know what it was and had misidentified it, but it looked very Mk. I-ish to me, so I took a chance and got lucky.

Hi John,

thanks for the welcome!

You got so lucky indeed :D !!! i don't know many oiler collectors that own a MK1, perhaps i will never manage to find one, but who knows...

to groger, i can't say nothing for sure without a pic, but your oiler is probably the model for 1903 Springfield rifle or an early garand one. The 1903 oiler had a straight body, while the garand one has a slightly round body at the end of the oil container (see my pic of a garand one). Leather on the cap is to reduce noise...

post-48478-1250340030.jpg

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Hi John,

thanks for the welcome!

You got so lucky indeed :D !!! i don't know many oiler collectors that own a MK1, perhaps i will never manage to find one, but who knows...

to groger, i can't say nothing for sure without a pic, but your oiler is probably the model for 1903 Springfield rifle or an early garand one. The 1903 oiler had a straight body, while the garand one has a slightly round body at the end of the oil container (see my pic of a garand one). Leather on the cap is to reduce noise...

Many thanks for that,

Your picture is exactly the same as the one I was unable to post. So after all these years I can lable this as an early Garand oiler. I'll now start researching Garand rifles.

I'm really very grateful,

Thank you,

Guy. ( Alias, navyman, groger, sorry I forgot which forum I was on, I must standardise my name!)

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  • 5 years later...

Attention for John Thorn. What is the difference between a Mark III and Mark IV oil bottle? I have what I think is an oil bottle III/IV, marked on the bottom EFD with the WD arrow.

It is a little confusing as an oil bottle, as once unscrewed the lid has what appears to be a long spoon attached to it??

Richard

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Sorry, I meant to add the e - John Thorne.

Photo's attached to what is either the Mark III or Mark IV - assuming I have an oil bottle!!post-14913-0-13350400-1411221761_thumb.jpost-14913-0-80572400-1411221761_thumb.jpost-14913-0-28237400-1411221762_thumb.j

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Bought a nice WW1 EFD (Enfield) marked .303 bottle a few days ago to go with my mark lll rifle for a fiver which pleased me. Re post #20 the 'long spoon' is to apply the oil to the workings of the rifle, with minimum wastage.

Mike.

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The photo looks like a Mk IV which has a flat base. The Kk111 has a convex base, which makes it hard to stand on its end.

Regards

AlanD

Sydney

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  • 1 year later...

brilliant website , didn't know much about oils bottles till I read  post , recently bought a mark 111 , left it pretty much un cleaned as it was found, but wiped over the end as wanted to learn more about it and am still lost, as to what the markings mean, please could anyone help?

Regards

Colin

DSC06050.JPG

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