Tell me about this .303 British

TreeDux

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I picked this rifle up several years ago when I was enamored with the idea of sporterizing a military rifle of some sort The .303 seemed like a cool option it’s supposed to be a Winchester but it’s not stamped. It has Bishop on the butt plate and .303 Nitro proof on the barrel with not much else to go on.903BA573-6089-4E6C-83FE-8C4E92611A3E.jpeg
 

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Luke S

Lil-Rokslider
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My understanding is that there were 3 plans with the P14 Enfield rifle.
1. Replace the British SMLE 303 rifle with the P14 firing a new 7mm cartridge. This idea was dropped, before WWI I think
2. Some were made for Britain in .303 in US factories but were not really common as I understand it.
3. When America entered WWI we couldn't make Springfield rifles fast enough so changes were made and Enflield P14 rifles were made in 30-06 for American troops. The famous pacifist turned medal of honor winner Alvin York was issued one (he may have picked up a Springfield during the war ut its not clear).

So what you have appears to be a British version with a sporting stock.
 
Joined
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3. When America entered WWI we couldn't make Springfield rifles fast enough so changes were made and Enflield P14 rifles were made in 30-06 for American troops.
I believe the 30-06 chambered rifle were then called P17. If understand correctly the P14 was only 303 Brits.
 
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TreeDux

TreeDux

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This rifle is quite a bit older than I thought. Is there any chance that it was fitted with this stock at the factory? Or is that definitely an aftermarket? There is a pretty strong discussion going in another thread about modifying a mode70. Obviously this is a very different rifle but I wonder if there are Enfield purists out there that would cringe at the thought of removing the rear sight and setting it up for a modern scope. It could also be cool to shoot as is. Overall I am not seeing any significant monetary value attached.
 
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May 22, 2023
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I bet it was bought out one the those old magazines as a military surplus for like $17.95 and then sporterized later. I’m surprised the rear sight ears weren’t already milled off. I’d continue to customize because they are let the most popular in the mil surplus world.
 
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TreeDux

TreeDux

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What is the primary detriment to their popularity? The mass production element? The action is definitely clunky but seems solid and relatively smooth.
 

TaperPin

WKR
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Jul 12, 2023
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What a cool old gun!

I used to own a 1917 (the 30-06 version of the same gun) and it was a tank - quite a big chunk of steel. The action is popular for customizing because of it’s large size, large barrel thread diameter and length of the action - either the 303 or 30-06 version can be converted to long fat cartridges. I miss having it around and should have kept it. It’s cool that the Remington model 30 was simply military 1917 parts left over from the war combined with a sporter stock and shorter barrel.FB449620-2473-4DA4-98EF-BC5DE93EF8AC.jpeg
 

MAP1

Lil-Rokslider
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Not sure why during WW2 the British used the .303 Enfield when the far superior M1 Garand was available?
 

Elmer J. Fudd

Lil-Rokslider
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303s are awesome. I inherited a heavily sporterized Lee-Enfield from my grandfather. It was originally his father-in-laws. My mom killed her first deer with it. It has all sorts of modifications to it. A real 303 purist would be appalled. The action feels very mechanical to operate but the gun shoulders and “points” great. I love it. The only downside is it is expensive to shoot. There is something cool about holding the gun and wondering where it has all traveled.
 
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TreeDux

TreeDux

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Messages
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Location
North Carolina
303s are awesome. I inherited a heavily sporterized Lee-Enfield from my grandfather. It was originally his father-in-laws. My mom killed her first deer with it. It has all sorts of modifications to it. A real 303 purist would be appalled. The action feels very mechanical to operate but the gun shoulders and “points” great. I love it. The only downside is it is expensive to shoot. There is something cool about holding the gun and wondering where it has all traveled.
Mechanical is a good way of putting it. The bolt is relatively smooth but still it feels a bit like shifting a three speed on the column truck. The bullet has killed all manner of game, including everything on the African continent, despite weird configurations and lackluster ballistics. My understanding is that there are vastly improved bullet options available now but they are expensive and can be hard to find.
 
Joined
May 22, 2023
Messages
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303s are awesome. I inherited a heavily sporterized Lee-Enfield from my grandfather. It was originally his father-in-laws. My mom killed her first deer with it. It has all sorts of modifications to it. A real 303 purist would be appalled. The action feels very mechanical to operate but the gun shoulders and “points” great. I love it. The only downside is it is expensive to shoot. There is something cool about holding the gun and wondering where it has all traveled.
That rifle is still my father-in-law’s go to deer rifle. His killed many deer with the 303 Brit. He want to go on an elk hunt soon and I think I’m going to tell him to use it since it’s the rifle he is most comfortable with.

I had one and killed deer with it.
 

Happy Antelope

WKR
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Mechanical is a good way of putting it. The bolt is relatively smooth but still it feels a bit like shifting a three speed on the column truck. The bullet has killed all manner of game, including everything on the African continent, despite weird configurations and lackluster ballistics. My understanding is that there are vastly improved bullet options available now but they are expensive and can be hard to find.
Ballistic are not really important to 99% of hunting. Most animals are killed at close distance, especially in Africa. The ballistics on a lot of large bores are not very good beyond 200-300 yards. Great rifle, I would hunt with it all day long.
 
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