They call me Mr. Retro!

Discussion in 'Up To .375' started by sestoppelman, Dec 17, 2013.

  1. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Got a chance to shoot this thing yesterday. I could not be much more happy with it. Shot like a house-a-fire. At 50yds it kept 20 Sierra 150's with R15, 5 different charges, all in about 2 inches. At 100yds it kept 11 of 12, 180gr Sierras with W760, 3 charges in about 4 inches left tor right and 2.5 inches up and down. This with express sights on a late afternoon shoot with my old eyes. Both bullets were .311 diameter.
    Gun ran perfect. May be a keeper!
    Now I have to decide whether to restore it or leave it as is.
     
  2. AkMike

    AkMike AH Fanatic

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    It's earned that patina! Don't change it!!!
     
  3. Red Leg

    Red Leg SILVER SUPPORTER AH Fanatic

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    Restoration is always a question. The Brits, unlike Americans, regularly sent guns back to the manufacturer for "clean-up". That would include everything from oiling and stripping to recasecolor and refinishing of stocks. It is why American collectors are obsessed with original condition on Winchesters and Parkers and yet a fine Purdey or Cashmore in fabulous condition probably went "home" for work several times. Long way around to say that if you want to have your leespeed restored you would not hurt the value. Note I said restored and not refinished. You would need to send it to Turnbull or someone of his quality and the restoration will almost certainly cost more than the rifle. So while the value will be enhanced, you will likely have more into it than it's resulting value. I have done that on a couple of fine English SxS's, but I also intend to shoot them the rest of my life. And there is no one like Turnbull for that sort of work. Turnbull Mfg. Co. for firearm restoration of antique guns - antique revolvers, antique pistols - including 1886 Winchester rifles, Marlin rifles, Parker shotguns, Colt revolvers, and more

    The horizontal lever over the follower is a magazine cut-off. These were on a lot of early magazine rifles so that commanders could more easily control volley fire. Remember these early magazine rifles replaced single shots and the use of volleys had lasted through the Zulu War and the second Mahdi War in Sudan. The rifleman would keep a full magazine in reserve, using the rifle as a single shot. All that went out the window ten minutes into the First World War. Leespeeds were built on military actions, and the earliest likely would have a cutoff.
     
  4. tahoe2

    tahoe2 AH Member

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    whatever you decide, that's an awesome rifle.
     
  5. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Funny you should mention Turnbull. I believe his site states no work on Enfields. I have not yet decided what to do with it. A gent on another forum is doing a little research on this rifle for me and he says restoring would not be a good idea. I have given some thought to both ways and see the good and bad points. This may not technically be a LEE SPEED as it is not so marked as those were marked.
    The action used on this one is of the very early Magazine Lee Enfield type, not a SMLE. Note it has the early cocking piece safety. This thing shoots really well for a 100 year old rifle. When I hear back from the Enfield guy I will post whatever info he has for me. He is trying to document as many of these as he can for a possible book.
     
  6. AZDAVE

    AZDAVE AH Veteran

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    Nice rifle
     
  7. PaulT

    PaulT AH Fanatic

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    Ses, you've found a rifle that was made before you were !, AND IT STILL WORKS :whistle:
    I think that in itself is a feat worthy of mention !!!


    No seriously,
    well done, the 'ole .303 has in indelible history in our country (Aus) having been the standard issue through several conflicts and then successfully employed by returning servicemen on a whole host of game animals from deer to buffalo.


    I know of several deerstalkers and houndhunters who still rely on jungle carbines and S.M.L.E's in .303 to fill their freezers and collect their trophies with each and every year.(y)
     
  8. sestoppelman

    sestoppelman SILVER SUPPORTER AH Legend

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    Like that old saying for old farts, "Everything hurts, and if it doesn't hurt, it doesn't work!" This rifle works, better than me!
     
  9. Velo Dog

    Velo Dog SILVER SUPPORTER AH Elite

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    +1.
     
  10. Von Gruff

    Von Gruff AH Veteran

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    I just bought this one from 1900
    315395737_zps4ee2c377.jpg

    Going to restock and make it like this
    LeeSpeed_Rifle_RHS_zps06394966.jpg
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 9, 2014
  11. Von Gruff

    Von Gruff AH Veteran

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    This is the blank I have bought. Not too fancy but just enough to be interesting.

    211-1358649952_zps6ea770eb.jpg 211-1358649808_zps187d8a9f.jpg
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 9, 2014
  12. Von Gruff

    Von Gruff AH Veteran

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    Talking about retro, I have always had a soft spot for the Lee Speed but they have always been a bit too pricey so this is the only way to get something in that configuration. It will sort of round out my old guns with a Mk 1 LSA 577-450, Mk 3 ME 303 1900 L E Sporter (fake Lee Speed) and 1908 DWM 7x57.
    They have all been restock and fix-er-uppers.

    The 577-450
    Photo0985_zps4b901e49.jpg

    The 303
    Photo0887_zps81b62541.jpg

    The 7x57
    7x57StalkingRifle02-02-09012-1.jpg
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 9, 2014
  13. AkMike

    AkMike AH Fanatic

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    I wish that I had you skills and patience to work with wood. Goodonya!
     

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