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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

SMLE with unreliable safety


Nutting

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My recently acquired and otherwise excellent No.1 Mk.III had what I can only call a “part-time” safety, i.e. sometimes it worked, and sometimes it didn’t.

 

On close inspection I saw that the washer which should sit between the top of the “dogs bone” spring and the shaft of the safety, was absent.

 

Luckily, I have been able to acquire a spare washer from a friend and the safety is now full-time not part-time!
 

Moral of story, if it doesn’t work, check for missing bits!

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I expect you'll've given the whole thing a critical going-over since you found that. Might mean Bubba The Bodger's been there.

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The other thing that can easily happen with SHtLE safeties is it is very easy to assemble them incorrectly - they will go together several ways - but only one way will work correctly. (It's a matter of where you position the thread when you start!)

 

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2 hours ago, MikB said:

I expect you'll've given the whole thing a critical going-over since you found that. Might mean Bubba The Bodger's been there.

Fortunately, Mike, it’s in brilliant condition otherwise.  Bubba the Bodger ain’t been here, Fultons have)!

2 hours ago, 4thGordons said:

The other thing that can easily happen with SHtLE safeties is it is very easy to assemble them incorrectly - they will go together several ways - but only one way will work correctly. (It's a matter of where you position the thread when you start!)

 

So I discovered!  Got the right start point in the end...

Edited by Nutting
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This post is very interesting.

My SMLE .  When shooting I have found that the safety creeps on, and has to be taken off before trying to cycle the bolt and eject the cartridge I have shot. I taken apart the safety and cleaned it, but noticed that the Dog bone is straight, as opposed to the slightly bent Iv'e seen on others.

As this was acquired as an un-issued, I lived with this manly because it shoots so well. Hope I'm not hijacking the thread, but would welcome the posters views on it. 

Thanks,

,Gary. 

SMLE 009.jpg

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22 minutes ago, 17107BM said:

This post is very interesting.

My SMLE .  When shooting I have found that the safety creeps on, and has to be taken off before trying to cycle the bolt and eject the cartridge I have shot. I taken apart the safety and cleaned it, but noticed that the Dog bone is straight, as opposed to the slightly bent Iv'e seen on others.

As this was acquired as an un-issued, I lived with this manly because it shoots so well. Hope I'm not hijacking the thread, but would welcome the posters views on it. 

Thanks,

,Gary. 

SMLE 009.jpg

Is the washer present under the top end of the dog bone?  If so, does the dog bone put any pressure on it?

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All the parts are there that should be according to the fire arms diagrams. My thought is that the dog bone being straight is not exerting enough pressure to keep the safety off , when shooting. Being an SMLE with mag cut off, just nice to shoot a ww1 rifle with a minor fault.

Only I shoot the rifle. Issue known. and the safety works when applied. So, all good.

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Replacement springs (inc NOS) can be found pretty easily - might be worth trying that.

They are not bent as issued although I have seen them with a pronounced bend.

 

The other thing, before buying anything - have you ensured that the safety spring screw is tightened down? If it is not then it may be not putting enough pressure on the spring so that is what I would try first, just check that the safety spring screw is correctly tightened down, a half or even quarter turn may make a big difference.

Chris

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Thanks Chris.

Done all I can with it. From above posts, the only way I know of gently starting a thread is wind back until you feel the click of the thread starting(been in Engineering since 15) and to feel when tight,and to over tighten.

But, always willing to take advice, and learn!

Cheers.

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