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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

Lee Enfield Rifle Purchase


andy2014

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Hi

I was wondering what licences etc are required to be able to purchase an original 1915-1918 .303 Lee Enfield SMLE deactivated rifle, ideally with strap, some inert rounds and bayonet etc for display purposes etc

I see they are around £500 to £700 and there`s alot to learn first to be assured it is original etc.

Any tips appreciated or any assured dealers that are guaranteed original dealers.

With Thanks

Andy

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Any good gun shop will be able to advise you and also source whatever you need.

Tom

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2 minutes ago, museumtom said:

Any good gun shop will be able to advise you and also source whatever you need.

Tom

Thanks Tom! just thought to check on here, thought maybe anyone with an interest in selling you something of such value may just tell you what you want to hear for a sale? or am I just been cynical?

Regards

Andy

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That;s why I suggest a gun dealer, for advice and you buy what you hold in your hand, not a picture.

Tom.

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6 minutes ago, museumtom said:

That;s why I suggest a gun dealer, for advice and you buy what you hold in your hand, not a picture.

Tom.

Thanks!

6 minutes ago, 4thGordons said:

Thanks Chris, just what i was looking for! great details and information.

Thank You for posting the link! 

Regards

Andy

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No licence required for deac and inert rounds. Re gun it needs to be deac to EU standards and proof marked by Proof House to confirm. Comes with a certificate of deactivation. No need to store in secure cabinet etc.

 

Re buying one, good ones hard to find know. So much adding bits etc. They are working tools so to get one 100% original spec is hard but there is some rubbish out there. 

 

You need to go to Stoneliegh Military Fair at end of this month. Dealers aplenty there. Its near Cov. You can see and barter then.

 

Regards

 

TT

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No licence required for a deactivated rifle that is sold by a dealer in the UK. Just check it has the EU/UK deactivation certificate to be legally sold.  

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24 minutes ago, trenchtrotter said:

No licence required for deac and inert rounds. Re gun it needs to be deac to EU standards and proof marked by Proof House to confirm. Comes with a certificate of deactivation. No need to store in secure cabinet etc.

 

Re buying one, good ones hard to find know. So much adding bits etc. They are working tools so to get one 100% original spec is hard but there is some rubbish out there. 

 

You need to go to Stoneliegh Military Fair at end of this month. Dealers aplenty there. Its near Cov. You can see and barter then.

 

Regards

 

TT

Thanks for the info!

23 minutes ago, mark holden said:

No licence required for a deactivated rifle that is sold by a dealer in the UK. Just check it has the EU/UK deactivation certificate to be legally sold.  

Thanks for the info! 

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Depending on where you live, there are arms fairs regularly held where you can personally examine the deacts for sale, that way ;you know exactly what you are getting.  I regularly visit the Northern Arms Fair show held in Pudsey, West Yorks, which is attended by most of the established dealers with plenty to look at.

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19 minutes ago, 593jones said:

Depending on where you live, there are arms fairs regularly held where you can personally examine the deacts for sale, that way ;you know exactly what you are getting.  I regularly visit the Northern Arms Fair show held in Pudsey, West Yorks, which is attended by most of the established dealers with plenty to look at.

Thanks, I was looking to go this years in a few weeks!

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Andy,

 

You may want to peruse

www.gunstar.co.uk

before you visit an arms fair.

This site currently has about 50 of the British 303 rifles offered by different vendors.

Prices seem lower than the 700-800 sterling that you mention above.

It will give you an idea of what is out there, at what cost.

Good luck with the search, and of course it goes (almost) without saying that you have to post photos here!

 

Regards,

JMB

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57 minutes ago, JMB1943 said:

Andy,

 

You may want to peruse

www.gunstar.co.uk

before you visit an arms fair.

This site currently has about 50 of the British 303 rifles offered by different vendors.

Prices seem lower than the 700-800 sterling that you mention above.

It will give you an idea of what is out there, at what cost.

Good luck with the search, and of course it goes (almost) without saying that you have to post photos here!

 

Regards,

JMB

Thanks for the link and tips, looking to do my research this year then possibly find one next year, only looking to collect a few special artifacts, have family medals, grandfathers watches worn through the wars, got a christmas tin and just got a trench flexible saw in a pouch as some relatives were royal engineers and one a tunneller, but the ultimate item to preserve and admire has to be an Enfield 303, ideally with bayonet, strap etc and 100% original. Looking to display it and take it and other items to local events and displays so others can see it and learn together with my research of my relatives.

Not wanting to hoard items for the sake of it but select relevant key items highlighting different aspects of the war in a subtle but high impact way.

also have a few shells and trench art, always looking for something different and thought provoking like the trench saw!

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15 minutes ago, andy2014 said:

Not wanting to hoard items for the sake of it but select relevant key items highlighting different aspects of the war in a subtle but high impact way.

also have a few shells and trench art, always looking for something different and thought provoking like the trench saw!

That was my theory a few years back....I've now filled what was our dining room, including all the wall space...gets addictive, need a bigger house!

Best of luck, and please do keep us all informed.

 

regards,

 

Dave.

 

 

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20 minutes ago, Dave66 said:

That was my theory a few years back....I've now filled what was our dining room, including all the wall space...gets addictive, need a bigger house!

Best of luck, and please do keep us all informed.

 

regards,

 

Dave.

 

 

I bet!

Not been to a militaria yet or proper dealer, just odd stuff at antique dealers.

Missus keeps me in check! 

My arguement is I don't drink or smoke etc so can treat myself occasionally, but aim to occasionally find a few unique items and just one offs of each.

But I am sure it will end up like yourself! 

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Basic obvious stuff if a dealer is trying to charge you top money, look at condition, original matching wood and that all the principal parts are original to the weapon i.e.  the serial numbers match.

The price of these has gone up hugely in recent years with all the anniversaries and there are plenty of bitza's out there made up of spare non matching parts, sometimes on new wood work.  Don't pay much for these as you will not get your money back when you sell.    

 

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3 hours ago, REME245 said:

Basic obvious stuff if a dealer is trying to charge you top money, look at condition, original matching wood and that all the principal parts are original to the weapon i.e.  the serial numbers match.

The price of these has gone up hugely in recent years with all the anniversaries and there are plenty of bitza's out there made up of spare non matching parts, sometimes on new wood work.  Don't pay much for these as you will not get your money back when you sell.    

 

Thanks for the tips, lots to research and learn first, appreciate the costs for genuine will be high but also an investment in the future as you say.

Thanks

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Budget £100-150 for WW1 dated bayonet and correct WW1 scabbard.

 

Another £100 plus for WW1 dated sling. Post war ones identical but no maker mark or date.

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I started out trying to acquire just a few iconic items, nothing too much, just some representative items, you know, not a collection as such..

 

Just a Lee Enfield, oh and a bayonet, clip of inert rounds in original charger...

 

Pull through..

 

Wire cutters..

 

Brodie helmet, water bottle, clasp knife.. SRD jar,  just a few bits... I can stop anytime.. 

 

Mills No5.. and 23, E tool, 18pdr shell, trench map, water can, mess tin, No80 fuze,  Christmas tin, Trio, and before you know it the house is full.

 

The slope is slippery. Careful on it, crampons advised.

Edited by ServiceRumDiluted
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6 hours ago, trenchtrotter said:

Budget £100-150 for WW1 dated bayonet and correct WW1 scabbard.

 

Another £100 plus for WW1 dated sling. Post war ones identical but no maker mark or date.

Thanks for the tips!

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1 hour ago, ServiceRumDiluted said:

I started out trying to acquire just a few iconic items, nothing too much, just some representative items, you know, not a collection as such..

 

Just a Lee Enfield, oh and a bayonet, clip of inert rounds in original charger...

 

Pull through..

 

Wire cutters..

 

Brodie helmet, water bottle, clasp knife.. SRD jar,  just a few bits... I can stop anytime.. 

 

Mills No5.. and 23, E tool, 18pdr shell, trench map, water can, mess tin, No80 fuze,  Christmas tin, Trio, and before you know it the house is full.

 

The slope is slippery. Careful on it, crampons advised.

Sounds like me...

Just a few things?

So far only got a Trench flexible saw in its case,  a Princess Mary Christmas tin, a Kodak vest pocket camera in a leather case, a few shells, and trench art 1914 shell,

but have visions on grandeur already with a Lee Enfield rifle, of course with bayonet, strap and rounds, I just see it as the most iconic item to treasure for the future.

Admit a Brodie helmet would be nice as an iconic item, possible some barbed wire and the screw picket stake is an iconic item surely...

Water bottle sounds nice!

At a local antiques dealer there`s a 4ft strip of Ypres wood trench flooring on sale, that would look nice to display everything on?

Oh dear! its started hasn't it?.....

Planning a trip to the next Militaria this month, only to look of course!

 

 

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The militaria shows are good for the larger items, as all under one roof. But if you have a large flea market local to you they can be excellent to look for some of he accessories. Some traders deal in so much bulk they don't realise what some things are, so you can pick things up much cheaper. My local one is in Malvern and the bulk of my stuff has come from there over the years.

Whistles, either General service or pea type, are excellent iconic items to accompany any period display and are all dated...I have picked up 20 or so, never paying more than 35 quid and some as little as 5, but watch out for the replicas being sold as originals.

 

Dave.

 

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4 hours ago, Dave66 said:

The militaria shows are good for the larger items, as all under one roof. But if you have a large flea market local to you they can be excellent to look for some of he accessories. Some traders deal in so much bulk they don't realise what some things are, so you can pick things up much cheaper. My local one is in Malvern and the bulk of my stuff has come from there over the years.

Whistles, either General service or pea type, are excellent iconic items to accompany any period display and are all dated...I have picked up 20 or so, never paying more than 35 quid and some as little as 5, but watch out for the replicas being sold as originals.

 

Dave.

 

Of course! the whistle, probably the last thing many men heard?

what a thought!

Thanks for the tip!

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Interesting photo`s  I scanned from the relatives of a soldier I researched shows some rifles nicely..

Prior to WW1 starting in 1914 he served 6 years with the Cheshire Engineers and attested on 5th August 1914 with the 10th Scottish Battalion The Kings Liverpool Regiment.
He was ill with Influenza, Catarrh and Chill, also transferred back to England to heal then returned to the front and posted with the machine gun corps just before been killed at Bellewarde, Hooge on 16th June 1915.

 

Personally I find the group photo quite haunting the way they are smiling at the camera, the photo was dated 1914, I assume during training so they really hadn't a clue what was coming?

I wonder how many survived?

Briscoe 2.jpg

Briscoe 3.jpg

zz.jpg

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1 hour ago, andy2014 said:

Interesting photo`s  I scanned from the relatives of a soldier I researched shows some rifles nicely..

Prior to WW1 starting in 1914 he served 6 years with the Cheshire Engineers and attested on 5th August 1914 with the 10th Scottish Battalion The Kings Liverpool Regiment.
He was ill with Influenza, Catarrh and Chill, also transferred back to England to heal then returned to the front and posted with the machine gun corps just before been killed at Bellewarde, Hooge on 16th June 1915.

 

Personally I find the group photo quite haunting the way they are smiling at the camera, the photo was dated 1914, I assume during training so they really hadn't a clue what was coming?

I wonder how many survived?

Briscoe 2.jpg

Briscoe 3.jpg

zz.jpg

Great photographs,

Long lee Enfield pictured with a P1888 bayonet, common amongst Territorials in the early war period.

I have plenty of the bayonets, but the rifle is seriously on my wish list sadly prices for a good one quite high now...never say never!

 

Dave.

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