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Whats the best repro 1853 enfield on the market?

Discussion in 'Campfire Chat - General Discussions' started by wt_jimbos, Jul 4, 2004.

  1. wt_jimbos

    wt_jimbos Cadet

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    HI my name is James (hence Jimbos)
    Im a big fan of the american civil war, i want to purchase a reproduction 1853 enfield for range shoot/hunting and hopefully in the future civil war re-enacting.
    I want the reproduction enfield to be the most historically accurate, for a 1853 model enfield that has been shipped from england to the union and confederacy.
    Which manufacturer produces the best 1853 model enfield rifled musket historically (please feel free to discuss quality and prices of manufactures too).
    Thanks. James
     

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  3. jeffdavislegion

    jeffdavislegion Cadet

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    Terrry Schultz at the Company Quartermaster is THE source (in my opinion) for defarbed Enfields. He starts with an Armi Sport. If the prices are still current, his charge for defarbing is only about $100 over the cost of an out-of-the-box Armi Sport.

    http://members.bellatlantic.net/~vze3jhwa/

    If you're choosing this particular rifle musket for reenacting, bear in mind that the unit you join may not have it as their first choice. Also bear in mind that there are many rumors, misconceptions and urban legends about Enfields. Blued or unblued comes to mind. Terry has the straight scoop.
     
  4. johan_steele

    johan_steele Lt. Colonel Retired Moderator

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    http://www.edsmart.com/jz/ Zimmerman will do the work.

    http://www.lodgewood.com Lodgewood does similar work to the Company Quartermaster, though I'm not certain the Company Quartermaster has access to the stock of original parts that Lodgewood does.

    I have heard complaints about Mr Zimmermans work, though of the half dozen I have handled all were quite well done. I will say the same of Lodgewood, while I have heard complaints of their work I've never seen anything but outstanding work. I've never dealt w/ the Company Quartermaster ad will defer to Mr Farrar.

    DO NOT STRIKE BRIGHT YOUR ENFIELD!!!! There I think I've got that off my chest, there were no Enfields built or shipped to the US that were struck bright. Some of the men did that work after they had been issued... often because the blueing had worn off due to heavy use. The majority of Enfields were kept blued.

    Good Luck James and take a gander over at the Poke Sack re-enactors forum for more good info and discussion.
     
  5. jeffdavislegion

    jeffdavislegion Cadet

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    Shane,

    You've taken the "blued" side of a discussion that has been going on for years. Be careful about absolutes. The following website is good reading.

    http://www.geocities.com/Pentagon/Quarters/1864/enf/enfblue.htm

    To be authentic, it comes down to the individual unit being portrayed. While all Pattern 1853 second and third pattern Enfields were rust blued (almost black), some armories and some commanders had them struck bright.

    That being said, the modern blue on the Armisport and Euroarms Enfields is the wrong color anyhow.
     
  6. johan_steele

    johan_steele Lt. Colonel Retired Moderator

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    Mr Farrar, I was stressing tat no Enfields arrived in the US or were manufactured struck bright. You are correct that many troops and even regiments struck their Enfields bright. You're quite right about the modern blue being incorrect, not to mention the wood, barrel bands, shape of the stock etc... That said, the modern Italian repops are poor imitations at best, though the Armi-Sport is the closest to the original.

    For what it's worth, I think the link you provided will be priceless to the poster as it contains a wealth of info. I printed it off the Authentic Campaigner a while ago and agree w/ the author.

    (Message edited by johan steele on July 04, 2004)
     
  7. gary

    gary 1st Lieutenant

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    Was reading the same question over at CWReenactors.com and the concensus there is to start with the Armisport and have it modified.

    As for myself, I like the British made Parker Hale Enfields and have all three. I'm into shooting, not reenacting (that's too much work and dedication and I'm just too lazy). Hat's off to the guys/gals who do though.
     
  8. johan_steele

    johan_steele Lt. Colonel Retired Moderator

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    Gary, good point... I had completely forgotten the Parker Hale. I've not seen one on the re-anactors field but have heard that they shoot quite well. What does one of those run and are they still in production?
     
  9. If your price range is less look here:

    http://www.gettysburgsutler.com/

    That's where I bought my Armisport Enfield and it's still in good condition despite being abused on the field of re-enacting. It's made in Italy and it's not "defarbed" but who can look from afar anyway?

    Shane,

    They might be poor imitations but I wonder how they measure up when live fired? My one uncle had an "735"?? Italian bolt action rifle a long time ago and it could blow a hole through a tree as big or bigger than your fist.

    (Message edited by Wil_clark_iii on July 05, 2004)
     
  10. johan_steele

    johan_steele Lt. Colonel Retired Moderator

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    Wil, they don't, I've live fired my Armi-sport Enfield and it lacks the accuracy of an original and doesn't compare favorably at all to my fathers original Springfield. The same is definetly true of the Italian Sharps repops... the accuracy is a long way from an original.

    My Miroku Springfield has stacked favorably when compared to an original Springfield... but neither the Euro Arms or Armi-Sport Springfield is very good in comparison.
     
  11. wt_jimbos

    wt_jimbos Cadet

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    Hi there,
    James again, I am definately going to keep my enfield blued as i want it as it would have been when shipped from england. I am from Australia, most re-enactment groups are short on numbers and will probably jump on anyone with a 3 band smooth bore or rifle.
    So is parker hale the best choice for range shooting? does it size up for accurate markings, furniture, bands, twist ratio etc? and what does it retail for?
    Thank u all for your responses, please keep them coming.
     
  12. Shane,

    If what you say is true then would the powder make a difference? I know that in the originals they had 60-65 grains. Maybe it needs a little more powder or it needs the rifling rebored. One of the two can have an affect on a rifle, that much is certain. One of these days I'll do some expiermentation with my rifle, see which one works and stick with it.

    When firing a live round the wind could also have an affect on accuracy. That too can be over-looked
     
  13. johan_steele

    johan_steele Lt. Colonel Retired Moderator

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    Wil, FFG black powder & 60 grains behind the minie ball, I won't use the "improved minie", I use the original style w/ the same weight of powder used originally. The rifling on my Armi-sport is acceptable. The big difference between it an original is balance & weight. My Miroku Springfield is balanced correctly and the weight is just about perfect... the difference between it & the Italian repops is legion.


    I'm told the Parker Hale is to an Italin Enfield what my Miroku is to an Italian Springfield. And getting a hold of one is like getting hold of a Miroku...

    But there is no substitute for an original, holding my fathers original Springfield, Sharps or Smith carbine is literally holding a piece of history. Live firing them is an experiance as well.
     
  14. johan_steele

    johan_steele Lt. Colonel Retired Moderator

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    James, the more I think about your original question the more I think you should call either Zimmerman or Lodgewood directly and have them customize one for you. If you have the money, approx $1300, you can get one made with many original parts... a whitacre barrel runs about $300, a correctly made Black Walnut stock, original furniture etc...

    If I knew what I know now that is the route I'd have gone.

    If you are going to go through the effort of de-farbing your rifle and hopefully getting accurate gear... you might as well do it right to start with.

    If you are doing a CSA impression you can get repro British leathers & have the benefit of easily switching to a Redcoat impression.

    You might also paruse http://www.authentic-campaigner.com for quality vendors and other more learned opinions.
     
  15. gary

    gary 1st Lieutenant

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    Shane - used Parker Hales go for anywhere from $450 to $700, depending on the condition and the market (location). England stopped making the Parker Hales though I'm told they make some metal components for the "Parker Hale" guns that are assembled in Italy.
     
  16. Shane,

    I know about FFG powder and the original minie ball, ect. The balance in the Armisport is very near or right behind the rear band. Which isn't bad for me because I like a well balanced rifle that has the weight in the back rather than in the front and what else not. Of course I could shave the stock down to make it lighter but I like it to be some what weighty.

    It all depends on how you feel about your firearm.
     
  17. jeffdavislegion

    jeffdavislegion Cadet

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    Wil,

    Just a thought. Isn't how the originals were built and balanced more important than how one feels about his firearm? After all, we're talking history here. Also isn't historical accuracy important even if you can't see it "from afar?" What if you're in a living history, and people interested in the ACW are "up close and personal?" Isn't it important to give accurate information?
     
  18. Daniel,

    I've had a few people come up to me asking about the rifle(s) that were used in the CW. Well when it comes to firearms just about everyone who owns or owned them must have felt something about them. Every rifle that you see in the Gettysburg Museum or other Civil War museums tells a little tale in their own right. Some have been found with carved initials, others were engraved on the hardware and stock.

    Sure I've had people telling me about the markings on my rifle. I just simply tell them that they were not on the originals but just imagine if the currect markings existed. Simply "defarbing" a rifle adds authenticity to your outward appearence, but when it comes to replacing the parts on your piece you would have no idea which manufacturer made it. I've known someone who had bought a "defarbed" rifle and didn't recall who made it. It looked like a Euroarms but I could've been wrong. That's why I'm keeping the markings on my rifle.
     
  19. johan_steele

    johan_steele Lt. Colonel Retired Moderator

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    James, something you may wish to do is get ahold of <u>Civil War Guns</u> by Edwards or the <u>Rifle Musket</u> by Fuller. Edwards book is quite useful and has a wealth of info... and it's still in print. THe Fuller book isn't. While Fullers book concentrates almost exclusively on the Springfield it has a wealth of fascinating info. Depending on what your library system is like I would think you should be able to aquire either through an inter library loan.

    Good Luck
     
  20. wt_jimbos

    wt_jimbos Cadet

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    Hi again guys,
    Shane, I have looked over the zimmerman site, the enfield appears nice but i couldnt see any prices or whether he will ship it to Australia. The lodgement site looked awesome but i wouldnt be able top orginise the replacement parts to upgrade a reproduction enfield and have it ship over to Australia.
    So guys what i was hoping to find was the best reproduction enfield i could order, without modification that can be shipped to Austrlia.(LOL and don't worry i wont strike it bright as i want it to be as it was when shipped out of england during the period, so i am sticking with BLUE.)
    I have about...up to $800 US to spend before my girlfriend starts throwing rocks at me. I have looked on the navy arms website for their Parker Hale which was $791,i have seen them on other sites for about $699 new. So Im leaning towards that. Then it only comes down to if someone such as zimmerman can modify and ship the rifle to Australia at $800 US?
    P.S.Now comes looknig for a sling, bayonet and scabbard.
     
  21. johan_steele

    johan_steele Lt. Colonel Retired Moderator

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    James, I'm rather certain Lodgewood has done international orders before, I don't know about Mr Zimmerman. I think it would be worth your while to give a phone call to Lodgewood a see what they'll do for you... for what it's worth also ask if they have a parker hale on hand, they often have some real beauties in their consignment section.

    I didn't think the Parker Hales were made anymore... if yu can get you're paws on one go for it.

    http://www.umvmco.com is a good source for leathers and a bayonet, though their slings are the US contract version instead of the British issue. You may wish to call them live as well, last time I was in ttheir store they had a Parker Hale. You'll want their "best quality" gear though on the bayonet &amp; scabbard. I can vouch for the quality of their leathers but would advise you to shop around for uniform, haversack etc as their quality control on uniorms is an issue. As you're not all tht interested in re-enacting yet... you have plenty of time to shop around and view all the options.

    Good Luck
     

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