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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

Remembered Today:

See how fast an Enfield could be fire


albert
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Very enlightening video. Its easier to appreciate fire rate when you see it being done. I know which side of the range I'd rather be on!

Keith

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No wonder the German's thought they ran into machine guns at Mons! A good counter to all the scoffers who thought the old army couldn't fire that fast!

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No wonder the German's thought they ran into machine guns at Mons! A good counter to all the scoffers who thought the old army couldn't fire that fast!

Yeah I know. I had got the impression from some of the books I'd been reading that the firing rate was actually fast and how the Germans thought they were hit by machine gun fire.

But actually that's faster than what I imagined and that guy doesn't have the adrenalin surge of knowing that the soldiers he misses are going to kill him!

Our lads were quicker and faster than that.

Amazing.

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Our lads were quicker and faster than that.

Did I count 22 or 25 rounds fired in that video? Even though the shooter had a few problems at the beginning, I agree with Peter in the above quote - up to 35 aimed shots per minute was not unheard of in the British Army of 1914 (and even more is possible by some individuals).

Dave

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Did I count 22 or 25 rounds fired in that video? Even though the shooter had a few problems at the beginning, I agree with Peter in the above quote - up to 35 aimed shots per minute was not unheard of in the British Army of 1914 (and even more is possible by some individuals).

Dave

Wow.

I've been reading about the 2nd Battalion of the Royal Irish Rifles in Lucy's 'There's a Devil in the Drum'.

He really believed that old Battalion were some force to be reckoned with. I'm starting to understand.

Professional soldiers at their best.

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I see he appears to be using the 'firing with the middle finger' technique (keeping the right hand on the bolt and not moving it back to the small of the butt).

I've seen a musketry instructor use a similar technique from a standing position (in a 'pit' on the firing point) - I never realised that a bolt action rifle could fire so quickly, the bolt was scarcely closed before he fired.

It was phenominal.

Tom (the Walrus)

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Good stuff.

It would be interesting to see the target score too.

Steve

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Guest KevinEndon
Did I count 22 or 25 rounds fired in that video? Even though the shooter had a few problems at the beginning, I agree with Peter in the above quote - up to 35 aimed shots per minute was not unheard of in the British Army of 1914 (and even more is possible by some individuals).

Dave

22. The amount smoke coming out the barrel must have been a disadvantage sight wise on a windless day especially if there were 100 soldiers firing at that rate at once.

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I have never read that the smoke caused a problem. German accounts report the effects of the Mad Minute without being able to see who was firing, when the riflemen were not visible in the open. At distance, the rifle fire was not necessarily aimed at individuals. It would be aimed at areas to form beaten zones, similar to the use of MGs at medium- and long-range.

Fire discipline should also be taken into account. It was the capacity to control when a unit of men started and stopped firing, for example, that was just as impressive as the rate of fire of each individual.

Robert

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I wonder how hot the barrel became and whether this had any effect on accuracy.

Steve

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Hello,

I agree with Steve, it would be good to see the target/score. Not gripping the small of the but while firing would, I think, reduce accuracy.

Old Tom

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I have read soldiers accounts were the barrel became so hot that they took up another rifle. With drill, and the necessity of being able to rapid fire accurately, there must have been some awesome rates.

Would love to know the groupings on this guy's firing.

Cheers

Kim

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The SLE, and its use by the BEF, was very impressive. Even the lowly (allegedly) French cavalry carbine could, however, stop infantry attacks.

Robert

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Thanks Albert, great link. I would love to fire a Lee Enfield, I have one but its deactive.

Annette

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Hello,

I agree with Steve, it would be good to see the target/score. Not gripping the small of the but while firing would, I think, reduce accuracy.

Old Tom

The idea was to get as much lead as possible into a specific volume of space. Bracing hard with the left arm would give sufficient accuracy for this. Speed was paramount, accuracy secondary. This was another hard earned skill along with marksmanship, the opposite side of the coin as it were.

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Thanks Albert, great link. I would love to fire a Lee Enfield, I have one but its deactive.

Annette

I agree Annette,

mine is deactivated too, but the joy I get from simply holding the beast whenever I come to oil her

and listening to the action, is beyond words....priceless!

Ivan.

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I agree Annette,

mine is deactivated too, but the joy I get from simply holding the beast whenever I come to oil her

and listening to the action, is beyond words....priceless!

I know how you feel, except my gun is a he and not an her :unsure:

Annette

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From the Lee-Enfield Rifle Association website:

Most probably the finest bolt action battle rifle ever produced, it was easily capable of 15 rounds a minute of accurate fire in the hands of a trained soldier. However, a Small Arms School Corps QMSI managed a rate of 37 rds a minute in the 1930's.

I've never fired a gun in action but did shooting at school, with No 4 rifles. One competition involved starting with a full magazine at 1,000 yards, running to 900, firing two rounds, then down to 800 and so on.

The nearer you got to the target the more puffed you were. Speed and accuracy tended to cancel each other out.

cheers Martin B

cheers Martin B

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Hello,

As for the barrel over heating, the only real problem is a cook off. Since the SMLE fires from the closed bolt unlike a MG, the barrel can get so hot that as soon as you put a round in the chamber, it will cook off whether the bolt is closed or not.

I have 4 Lee Enfield's and I have never tried firing that fast. I will have to give it a try once all of the snow melts and the tempt drops from the -35C it is now.

I understand the love of SMLE's that some of the other members have talked about. I have two SMLE BSA's, a 1917 and 1918. I also have a No4 Mk 1 , ROF 1942 and a Long Branch 1943.

As for those of you who do not have the opprotunity to fire a Lee Enfield, if you ever come to my area of Canada, i'll take you out for a little bit of fun.

Cam

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I know how you feel, except my gun is a he and not an her :unsure:

Annette

TOUCHE!! lol

Ivan

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"I understand the love of SMLE's that some of the other members have talked about. I have two SMLE BSA's, a 1917 and 1918. I also have a No4 Mk 1 , ROF 1942 and a Long Branch 1943.

As for those of you who do not have the opprotunity to fire a Lee Enfield, if you ever come to my area of Canada, i'll take you out for a little bit of fun"

Cam

Cam, I would give anything to be able to take you up on that my friend!

one day eh?

cheers fella,

ps. how are your studies coming along, any spare time for the Forum? lol

Ivan

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