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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I recently found a nice 1917 Lthgow No.1 MkIII with a nice deep minty barrel and what seems to be Australian FTR marks MA 1945. Overall in NRA VG+ shape wood and metal. Bolt and rifle and all parts match except magazine, which has a different serial number but is Australian arsenal marked. Butt looks dark wood and original, but the rest of the furniture is SLAZ coach wood, descreet JJCO mark on metal and does not seem to be a bitser. I am wondering if I should find the magazine cutoff parts and have those parts restored back to 1917 configuration? Did the FTR armorers take them off or was it done earlier? Appreciate any thoughts on this type of restortation and where proper parts might be located. I also put my 1917 dated canvas Enfiled sling on it and it looks great! I love the earlu Lithgow markings on the receiver sides.
Thanks for any information and thoughts.
---DD
 

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The cutoff would've almost certainly been removed during a late or post war reinspection/rework, if not before. I've got a 1918 Lithy that was gone over in the 50's...it's got the slot but no cutoff.

The cutoff was discontinued during WWI, made a reappearance between the wars, then was discontinued for good early in WWII.
 

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I know that some people put fake nuts back on their dog after its been de-sexed - so I suppose you can put a cut off back on a rifle thats had it officially remove. ;-)
 

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FTR 1917 and Cut-off

Whilst officially, the cutoff was discontinued in late 1915/early 1916, it took a while for this order to trickle through the back-log of asemifinished receivers at factories, so a "Mark III" stamped receiver may or may not have exited the fatory with a cutoff fitted....in anycase, it would have been removed by a fireld armourer at the earliest opportunity...and thyen in the 1920s, they were mostly replaced(althopugh the Volley sights were not)...until late 1940, when Cutoffs were deleted permanently, bothg at factory level and in the filed (That still left rifles in store, at depots etc, which retained their cutoffs). BUT FTR in the 1950s was just that...all rifles were brought up to Mark III* standard, and so, Cutoffs removed.

If your rifle is marked "FTR MA 53", then it is a MarkIII*, whatever the origin of the rifle was ...and even if the socket markings don't match... or whatever.
So, no legitimate "Retro-making" here.

Regards, Doc AV
AV Ballistics.

PS, we in the Movies do it all the time...we get stripped WW I cutoff fitted receivers, and rebuild them into WW I era Movie rifles...cutoffs and all; and if we want to make them WW II rifles, remove cutoffs (and volley sights, if present) or change fore-ends) to get a "WW II Mark III*", to satisfy the purists...in any case, there were still Mark III in use in WW II (especially in first drafts to North Africa) but...the Pacific was fought mostly with brand new 1940s Mark III*s.

DocAV
 

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No "restoration" needed ... that rifle is essentially a 1945 No1 MkIII* on the basis it was FTR'd at the factory that year.

Itmay have gone on to serve in Korea in that configuration, so it could have made plenty of history since.

Put a magazine cutoff, and you're essentially tampering with history ... although I suppose no mods are needed to the rifle, and it's easily enough removed.

Go removing the stock for the "proper" fore end with volleys, and all you'll have is a civvy tampered bitzer that would look ridiculous with its parkerising and 1945 era components.

Yes, the action was made in 1917, but does that mean I should "restore" my Lithgow HT sniper - which was converted in 1944 on a 1916 action - back to its original No1 MkIII GReat War configuration ... yep, the fake balls on the dog analogy sounds about right ...
 

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DD it's your rifle. If you want it with a cut-off then put one on. It's all about what feels good to you, within reason of course. I just bought a 1940 BSA #1MkIII with a light FTR no date, complete with volly sights & cut-off, obviously someones fantasy gun. The furniture went on a 1915 LSA #1MkIII (no FTR) whose furniture had been sporterised but retained its cut-off. So which rifle is historically correct? I don't know, but I feel good handling both rifles as they would have gone into battle all those years ago.
Rant off
Sprog
 

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BSA1940 Mark III etc.

Obviously Sprog likes destroying historical pieces...in 1940 BSA was still making (officially) Mark III rifles, complete with cut-off and occasionally Volley sights!!!

Destroying one historical piece to make another (after conversion) piece is a bit strange, but as one said, "it's your rifle".

Disgustedly your,
Doc AV
AV Ballistics.
 

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Obviously Sprog likes destroying historical pieces...in 1940 BSA was still making (officially) Mark III rifles, complete with cut-off and occasionally Volley sights!!!

Destroying one historical piece to make another (after conversion) piece is a bit strange, but as one said, "it's your rifle".

Disgustedly your,
Doc AV
AV Ballistics.
Nice snide attack Doc AV, tact & diplomacy are obviously not listed among your strengths, but have you proof of what you claim? I have never seen one shred of evidence to hold up your assertion but if you prove me wrong I will gladly restore the 1940 BSA to the condition in which I bought it. I much prefer to share knowledge than to sling insults,which is what I thought this forum was about.
Regads
Sprog
 

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I respectfully disagree.

Obviously Sprog likes destroying historical pieces...
Disgustedly your,
Doc AV
AV Ballistics.
The rifle is not destroyed as such. The timber can be swapped back at anytime, the change is only superficial. You've said yourself that you swap bits and pieces back and forth depending on customers needs. Same diff' I reckon.

P.S. I used to own a 1939 manufactured BSA in Mk III configuration.......a nice piece.
 

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BSA Mark II of 1940 etc.

My Dear Sprog,
If I really wanted to put you down, I would have really let you have it...it seems Aussies are getting to be a very touchy-feely mob these days... Must be some of that Yankee Litigiousness rubbing off, with all these US TV Lawyer shows....
in anycase, I am old enough (and maybe foolish enough) to say what I think and be damned for it. It's known as "Calling a spade a Bloody shovel!"

As to the BSA rifles, BSA was Britain's Only Exporter of SMLEs for overseas Contracts in the 1920s and 30s. (The British Gov't, ie, Enfield, did not fill foreign orders.)

BSA , in 1939-40, was still filling orders for various Empire colonies and smaller Dominions, and the majority of these were in "Mark III" layout.(with cutoff, and occasionally with volley sights as well.)

In 1940, after Dunkirk, all BSA production (irrespective of existing contracts) was directed to making up the losses of SMLEs, and so many BSA (Export) Rifles ended up in the British Army; When the Blitz got to its worst, and BSA dispersed the production of SMLEs outside Birmingham, they also changed over to "Mark III*" production. These will have the almost anonymous ("B") socket markings, with 41-43 dates, and of course "GR" etc. marks

IN any case, BSA used up all possible receivers, whatever their markings, and also transferred complete rifles from store, as mentioned above. So it is possible to find "Dispersal" rifles with post-1940 marks, with cutoff slots (but not fitted), and later Mark III* wood.

Regards to all,
Doc AV
AV Ballistics.
 

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Ok, then

If the Aussies got rid of cutoff's in late 1940 (according to the known world that is enfields), why then do I have or have had a total of 3 MA'41 dated Lithgow magazine cutoff plates?

Got rid of cutoff plates in 1940 you reckon! :)
 

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Nothing at all unusual about that. I have yet to see any proof that any military or military procurement system anywhere in the world has ever been strictly in sync with the directive writers.

For example...LSA didn't get around to producing MkIII*s until 1918.

But I'd still be willing to bet that it'd be unlikely in the extreme that a cutoff plate would survive a late or post WWII FTR.
 

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Just for the sake of comparisons, I too have a B prefix '41 Lithgow with the cutoff slot and marked as a MkIII, not a MkIII*.
My '41 C prefix from the Orange production lacks the slot and it's marked as a MkIII*.
Until this thread I was always under the impression that 1941 was the transitional year in actual production.

Also, my '18 LSA is a MkIII and has a cutoff. I surely wouldn't mind having an '18 LSA marked MkIII* to keep it company.
 

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Also, my '18 LSA is a MkIII and has a cutoff. I surely wouldn't mind having an '18 LSA marked MkIII* to keep it company.
I was just thinking about how much I'd like to have an '18 LSA MkIII to keep my '18 LSA MkIII* company... ;)
 

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Too bad we didn't live closer to one another, or we could make temporary custody arrangements. :)

I think you have the more desireable specimen of the two.
 

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'These will have the almost anonymous ("B") socket markings, with 41-43 dates..."---DocAV

Make that "40-44 dates", actually and I think you'd better try a little harder next time...no more phoning it in!
I'll tell you what...when I get a hankering to hear from a Board Certified know-it-all, I expect much better results than your latest offering and I simply won't stand for sloppiness of this nature!
Get it right, you piker, or I'll sue you!
That's right, you heard right---a lawsuit. Just try and stop the American Legal System!
I'll sue you into the workhouse, I will and then the horses there in Blowfish Bay will just have to find a new physician!
XXX OOO
-----krinko

PS. "If I really wanted to put you down, I would have really let you have it..." Likewise, I'm sure.
 

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This reminds me of an SMLE I had cleaned up for a friend.

It was a 1916 BSA No I Mk III*, but the star had been lined out! So it had began life with no cutout (even though the slot and screw lugs were present) and one was added later. Since it did not have FTR markings that were visible (it did have under-the-handguard markings indicating an Australian rebuild in 1926), I installed a cutout and contnued on my way.

BTW, the lady who received the rifle as a present was VERY happy about the cutoff, she shoots at a public range in Pennsylvania where only three rounds may be loaded at a time, so going single-shot is easier with that cutoff.

Next time I see her with the SMLE, I will take pictures
 

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sheeese , i thought i had visited the M1carbine site at CSP for a miniute there , :>}

glad to see so much civility here though , someone said in my novice days - "NEVER SAY NEVER OR ALWAYS WHEN IT COMES TO ENFIELDS" i took that to heart and its been proven over and over ,

i think its important to have the pieces as accurate as possible - but having said that the FTR puts a diferent slant on whats accurate doesnt it ?
and these NIW rifles are giving the "NEVER BEEN SHOT" BS new legs ,
be happy with your rifles -they are yours[for now] have them as you like them , but dont put SH&* on them that never was there , and dont make up justifications for altering them - just admit you think its better if you must ,
i like them as i get them mostly - i have fixed broken stuff and tried to replace missing parts when i could find the right vintage ,
personaly i dont add target sights but some do , i dont switch out missmatched wood or refinish but some do , i dont iron out dents and dings but some do , im not fooled into thinking those rifles are "factory fresh" or 'unfired specimins' [the cup i left at the lab at my last doctor visit is more factory fresh and unfired than those rifles]

i guess if the mans rifle is marked mkIII it can have a cutoff - if its marked mkIII* it probably shouldnt , and if he bothers to research it a bit he can justify what he does to it ,
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I want say "Thank You" to all here for their thoughts and advisement on this subject. I am going to leave the 1917 Lithgow, No. 1 MkIII FTR as found, sans cutoff slide. Historically correct after FTR and I just want to enjoy it as is, FTR'd by the armourer.
Lithgows are such fine rifles, so I will keep it as a steward of history's finest. Thank you all!
---DD
 

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thats a very nice way to look at it , and in keeping with the stewardship we share , if you find the right cutoff and screw i think it would be OK , but you definetly have a fine example of the rifle as is
 
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