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Hey Folks! I bring you a neat milsurp rifle. All of this information is what I’ve been able to garner through the internet and C.S Ferris' book on 1917s. If you have any more information or sources regarding this rifle and it's possible history, please share!

This is an Eddystone M1917 manufactured in either May or June of 1918 and refurbished for WWII with a High Standard Barrel. While an M1917 with a replacement barrel would generally be considered less valuable than an all original WWI configuration, this particular M1917 has interesting addition to the magazine plate. The plate has been serialized to the rest of the rifle.

In general, parts of M1917s being serialized to the receiver is a dead giveaway the rifle has served outside of the US, as the US never serialized parts outside of the receiver. In this particular case, The Ishapore Arsenal in India is noted for numbering the floorplates of M1917s, specifically the ones they received in order to equip the Chinese Expeditionary Force and others that fought in Burma and China. Some of this info is from a previous poster on this board regarding his 1917 Carbine! I wouldnt have taken a chance on this rifle without that post, so kudos to him.

My understanding is that while many rifles were indeed cut down for the chinese in India, many were also left intact, and this seems like it could be one of those rifles! Of course, this could also just be a rifle that went into a foreign service and numbered the magazine floorplate. I accept that as a possibility, and thankfully paid less for this rifle (plus a remington bayonet) than the going rate for a normal 1917.

I am guessing this rifle was used by the CEF in Burma and China based off the magazine floorplate markings. If you happen to have any more information on Burmese/Chinese M1917s, or the provenance of this particular rifle, please let me know! Besides the possible China connection, there is an H marking on the top of the bolt near the flaming bomb that I assume is an inspector mark, but I cant find any information on an "H".


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I would not say a HS barrel reduces price, it is a legit WWII alteration, with only 61,250 of the barrels made. not all were used as the last deliveries of such barrels were circa September of 1944. It does not have the look of an arm used in the jungle or humid environment, the stocks were much darker on those and lack the mold stains associated with such issue. Also, Chinese M1917 rifles have generally looked like crap and had really bad bores. I mean the stocks were black and the finish well worn

That said it could have sat in a wooden crate in grease, many did.

Having the floor plate marked, but not the bolt is not a UK WWII method, also the same is true of India, in both cases bolts were matched to the rifles. P14 rifle bolts were so serialized. Hard to think they went through a India base shop and did not get such markings.

I have seen a fair number of P14 rifles from India, and I do not recall seeing a marked floor plate on any of them. I would also mention that a RFI contract for refurbishment of M1917 rifles does not appear in Ian Skennerton's list of WWII contracts, though he has very little on the M1917 in that book. It also does not appear in Skennerton's US Enfield book, but that book is kind of dated.

If true, the likey issue was some sort of feeding issue that had to be rectified and so the fitted parts were so marked. The P17 Eddystone, Winchester and Remington made rifles did have slight parts interchangeability issues. The users of M1917 in WWII were as follows:

Brits Homeguard from 1940 to 1945 (subject to debate, 785,000)
Irish Homeguard from 1941 to 1945 (20,000)
French, mostly supplied from UK sales stocks (152,000) (more below)
US State Guard units, 93,000 allotted in 1940, many pulled back then resupplied in 1943 to 1944
Seabees used some for training at Camp Peary in VA
US artillery used some in 1942 to very early 1943
A lot of Tank destroyer units had them issued for stat side training when M1 rifles were short circa 1942.
Chinese (40,000)
Canada 100,000
pre war the Philippines. (~200,000)

The only real wide use in combat was the French:

M1917 rifles were supplied to the French in North Africa, used through Italy and dragon in August of 1944 and used all the way into the assault into southern German across the Rhine in April 1945. I seem to recall reading the US had an ordnance depot in Tunisa to support the French, much like they had similar depot near Cairo to support the 8th Army. Once the action shifted to Italy, then a new facility was set up in Naples that marked the rifles "PBS" marking supported the French.

Not an expert but that is what I have on it, if it helps any.
 
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