Lee Enfield conversions

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Combat Controller
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Lee Enfield conversions

Post by Combat Controller »

I have a number of Enfield's including a few well done conversions. I am thinking of converting them to other calibers. I would appreciate your thoughts and suggestions. The Manlicher Stocked one is 16" and a 1916 No 1 MK III with what seems such an early serial number it might have been made in the first weeks of production since 1916 was the year it was adopted. The other one is a Santa Fe Arms conversion with williams sights and a new heavy barrel at 19.4 inches. The Model 1941 was the apex of the conversions apparently. No idea what year the receiver was made. I am thinking right now of a .308 conversion that takes a M-14 mag and a .45-70 conversion. But I am interested in other ideas for sure. They are both very well done conversions but I also have several (rare even) Enfield's in original condition so I am not interested in restoring them. The cost would be over buying unaltered ones.
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AndytheAxe
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Re: Lee Enfield conversions

Post by AndytheAxe »

I've handled the Gibbs .45-70 conversions it looked more punishing than our 1886, I'd def put on a recoil pad if I went for one but it was a neat idea.
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HTRN
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Re: Lee Enfield conversions

Post by HTRN »

As the resident Enfield aficionado, let me just say that this is a bad idea. You're going to spend thousands of dollars to make your guns worthless. An unmolested plain jane Enfield, especially ones with the unit disc in the stock, in nice condition these days, is worth anywhere from 700 to 1200 dollars these days. A "rare" variant(considering the truly bewildering number of variations in SMLEs, it's more common than you think) is going to be worth more.

Getting either the m1a mag or the 45-70 conversion is going to be both expensive and a hassle to get it to function(in the case of the M1a, it's going to be a nightmare, there's a reason why everybody uses aics mags with bolt actions) all to build on a platform that's not great with optics and lower strength than modern bolt actions.

In general, I tell everybody that unless it's a 303 based cartridge, or very close in size, or you have a pile of cash to burn, to forget it, and if you do, you will forever devalue the gun.

The age of cheap milsurps to molest is over. Even garbage mosins that you could buy by the crate load are now three to 400 dollars a piece. And what exactly are you getting for it? 303 is close enough in performance to 308 Winchester to show no real gain, prvi is 23 bucks a box fromGrafs. The one thing I would consider is if you have an already butchered gun, putting it back together as a sporter makes sense, so you might want to consider building something like a 6.5/.303, or better yet, a .303 Epps(I really want to do a "yukon sporter"on a smile with nice wood in the Epps) There's also countless Pattern 14 Enfield's that have been butchered that with an Epps conversion, will actually outpace a 308 slightly - the downside is it's a shame to "waste such a big action, when they're prime candidates for DGR cartridges like .500 Jeffrey

If you want a DBM rifle in 308, Ruger, Savage and even Mossberg make them, buying one used, will be stronger, and much easier to put optics on. Plus aftermarket triggers are generally better and much wider availability.

If you want a 45-70 bolt action, a better idea is to find a used savage in 300 WSM, or similar short action magnum, watch a video on how to change a barrel, and get a barrel made in 450 Marlin. Learn to handload and use Marlin date if you want performance similar to stout 45-70 loads. If you want "light"458 win mag loads(4000 ft lbs), use 458 American data.

If you just want to fuck around with guns, look at the stevens 200, essentially a pre accutrigger savage 110, the can be had all day long under 350 dollars on gunbroker, and they'll never be worth anything. Because they're Savages, theyres tons of things you can do to them with just basic hand tools. In fact, check assist for savages in general, you semi regularly see them cheap especially this time of year when hunting season is over.
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Captain Wheelgun
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Re: Lee Enfield conversions

Post by Captain Wheelgun »

Speaking as one of the other Enfield fans here, HTRN is right. You will put far more money into any such conversion than the result will be worth. Especially if the rifles in your picture are the ones you are thinking about converting.

The post-WW2 Santa Fe Enfields actually are starting to have some collectors value in their own right. And the one with the Mannlichter stock is way too pretty to mess with further.
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HTRN
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Re: Lee Enfield conversions

Post by HTRN »

Captain Wheelgun wrote: Sun May 02, 2021 11:11 pm HTRN is right.
HTRN is always right.. :ugeek: :mrgreen:
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Netpackrat
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Re: Lee Enfield conversions

Post by Netpackrat »

The post where HTRN appears to be telling another member NOT to spend their money, leads me to fear that his account may have been compromised, however.
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Vonz90
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Re: Lee Enfield conversions

Post by Vonz90 »

Netpackrat wrote: Mon May 03, 2021 1:28 am The post where HTRN appears to be telling another member NOT to spend their money, leads me to fear that his account may have been compromised, however.
Well, he may be telling him to spend more money on something else, so it might be okay.
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Re: Lee Enfield conversions

Post by Precision »

Netpackrat wrote: Mon May 03, 2021 1:28 am The post where HTRN appears to be telling another member NOT to spend their money, leads me to fear that his account may have been compromised, however.
I too thought this, then I realized he was stating not to spend money on the Enfield conversion, but rather to buy and modify at least 6 other guns. I think HTRN was just pulling a fast one as some of us are on to his old tricks. But no mention of buying a Purdy or similar did seem odd, at first.
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HTRN
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Re: Lee Enfield conversions

Post by HTRN »

I'm more a parker guy -. I still lust after an A1 special 12 bore, but 50k+ is so not happening - I'd either buy a pair of fadals, with enough left over for some tooling, or use it for the down payment on this.

And what I suggested was actually the best course of action from a value perspective, which is what I usually try to do. It's not my fault you guys suffer from Vimes theory of economic unfairness :mrgreen:
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Combat Controller
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Re: Lee Enfield conversions

Post by Combat Controller »

Vonz90 wrote: Mon May 03, 2021 2:44 am
Netpackrat wrote: Mon May 03, 2021 1:28 am The post where HTRN appears to be telling another member NOT to spend their money, leads me to fear that his account may have been compromised, however.
Well, he may be telling him to spend more money on something else, so it might be okay.
That was my take away. I have several nice unmolested Enfields as well, a ww II and an irish contract. I like the rifles but I am meh on keeping them the same. I paid $60 on one and $75 for the other so I didn't think they would be worth all that much. The other two I can't have paid more than $100 each. My old rule used to be if you see a gun under $100 you automatically buy it. That is why in the great tax selloff in 2012 some of you guys got barrels of Mosins and Enfields etc. off me cheap. I think a .45-70 would be neat in some nice wood.
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