Your opinion which is better the Springfield or the Enfield

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Robert E Lee 1

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In in the 3rd Florida light infantry reenacting group and one thing I like about the Enfeild better is when our cleaning rod broke the Enfeild ram rods have a hole in the top barb peace and I was able to wrap some cloth a through it and pour some I think it was cleaning alcohol or peroxide and boom got my rifle cleaned and the Springfield ram rods don't have that so I woulda been outta lick if we had those
 

johan_steele

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Use a dipper full of hot water poured down the barrel dump it out & repeat until clean. Then use patches to remove residual and finally an oily patch to keep rust at bay. Never use a dry patch as that’s how you get a ramrod stuck.

For repros... the Italians don’t make one that truly good copy of either the Springfield or Enfield. Of the two their Enfield is a considerably better copy. The Japanese made a rather good copy of the M1861 but those are rare now.

As to originals I think the Springfield the superior arm due to quality of manufacturing and the drop in the stock. It’s an old debate of which opinions vary.
 
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poorjack

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I've shot both with live rounds (read minies). If the ball is sized correctly, both are capable of very good accuracy. The real difference is the weight and drop of the heel of the stock and the sights. That's a personal call.

Even if you're a reenactor, if you're serious about getting your musket properly clean, you should go over to Lodgewood, or S&S or NETrader and get a range rod with proper cleaning jags. The links to those guys are available on the North South Skirmish Association page under the links section, subsection Sutlers.
 
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redbob

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Though I'm a "Buy American" kid of person, I must confess that I am drawn to the Enfield; however that said while all of the Springfield's parts were interchangeable, that can't necessarily be said for the Enfield as their parts were made by a number of companies and they were assembled by a number of companies (as were the Springfield's) but: a prime example of this slight interchangeability problem is found in something as simple as the Enfield's bayonet...one size doesn't fit all. BTW, the Enfields were supposedly the first British built rifles made on the American "mass production" method.
 
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Robert E Lee 1

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I've shot both with live rounds (read minies). If the ball is sized correctly, both are capable of very good accuracy. The real difference is the weight and drop of the heel of the stock and the sights. That's a personal call.

Even if you're a reenactor, if you're serious about getting your musket properly clean, you should go over to Lodgewood, or S&S or NETrader and get a range rod with proper cleaning jags. The links to those guys are available on the North South Skirmish Association page under the links section, subsection Sutlers.
Thanks for sharing , and for the link info
 

Craig L Barry

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Interesting question and the answer depends on whether you mean modern reproductions or the original arms produced during the US Civil War-era. Undoubtedly during the Civil War-era, the US models were preferred. There is no evidence of any soldier with a US model 1861 on either side that exchanged it on the battlefield for anything else. A quick search of previous posts on this forum may be helpful. There are several chapters in The Civil War Musket: A Handbook for Historical Accuracy as well. Cpl William Livermore's quote from Little Round Top at Gettysburg is also enlightening. He wrote that anyone still with armed an Enfield was ordered to go onto the battlefield and exchange them for a Springfield (US model) and he recalls "many did so."

The slot in the ramrod of the Enfield is not a cleaning jag. It was there for use with the Enfield tool to create leverage for removing a minie ball stuck in the barrel.
 
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Tin cup

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I've re-welded enough 2-piece rods welding back together to know I hate em! Folk need to stop using that slotted end of the Enfield rammer as a cleaning jag, it's NOT designed for THAT purpose. You need a wiper to screw onto the threaded end of the rammer to wrap a cleaning patch around it to swab out the barrel.
They had a technique for cleaning back then, it works just as well today, as it did then!


Kevin Dally
worm.jpg
 

Booner

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I have a reproduction Enfield from back when I shot with the N-SSA, and I like the rear sights of the Enfield better than the Springfield, but an Enfield was easier to find and less expensive than a Springfield back then so that probably was the deciding factor. With my full face, the drop in the stock of the Springfield would probably more comfortable to shoot.
And if I had to make a choice if I were living "back in the day," I would take the Springfield as .58 cal. is 'mo better' to find ammo that fits down a dirty bore.
 

Robert E Lee 1

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Interesting question and the answer depends on whether you mean modern reproductions or the original arms produced during the US Civil War-era. Undoubtedly during the Civil War-era, the US models were preferred. There is no evidence of any soldier with a US model 1861 on either side that exchanged it on the battlefield for anything else. A quick search of previous posts on this forum may be helpful. There are several chapters in The Civil War Musket: A Handbook for Historical Accuracy as well. Cpl William Livermore's quote from Little Round Top at Gettysburg is also enlightening. He wrote that anyone still with armed an Enfield was ordered to go onto the battlefield and exchange them for a Springfield (US model) and he recalls "many did so."

The slot in the ramrod of the Enfield is not a cleaning jag. It was there for use with the Enfield tool to create leverage for removing a minie ball stuck in the barrel.
Interesting I didn't know that, thanks for the info
 
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Tin cup

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No one makes a really accurate looking Springfield 61 these days, Pedersoli's even got "looks" issues! Reenacting wise, the repro 55's/61's are problematic with blank rounds, due to the 90 degree flash channel. You can get a lot of misfires because of that design feature. Repro Enfield's, and the 1842's, and the Pedersoli 1816 conversion musket don't have those issues, generally. The flash channel on those go straight to the powder.
In the Civil War, the American rifles were made to interchange parts, imported Enfields were fitted mostly by hand, no two parts could interchange as well as American arms.
My repro Armi 61 has never misfired with a rammed paper charge, or a live round, it has failed to fire with just powder poured down the barrel many times!:cry:

Kevin Dally
 
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hrobalabama

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Of the originals, I have owned both and I prefer the P-53. A few years back, the history channel had the "old Marine DI compared the two for accuracy and handling. Her preferred the P-53 over the Springfield because it was 1 pound lighter. The accuracy was about the same.
 

Craig L Barry

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On the flip side, as you can tell there is no question that modern Civil War reenactors prefer the reproduction Enfield. Tin Cup kind of hits the key issue on the head...reliability w/ firing blanks. And of course, since all the reproductions are machine made now, there are none of the issues that non-interchangeable weapons presented to Civil War soldiers issued them in the field.
 
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poorjack

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On the flip side, as you can tell there is no question that modern Civil War reenactors prefer the reproduction Enfield. Tin Cup kind of hits the key issue on the head...reliability w/ firing blanks. And of course, since all the reproductions are machine made now, there are none of the issues that non-interchangeable weapons presented to Civil War soldiers issued them in the field.
That's not "exactly" true. EuroArms parts will not interchange with Armisport nor with Pedersoli nor with Parker Hale. They're often close enough to be made to fit with some careful filing etc.
 

johan_steele

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Of the originals, I have owned both and I prefer the P-53. A few years back, the history channel had the "old Marine DI compared the two for accuracy and handling. Her preferred the P-53 over the Springfield because it was 1 pound lighter. The accuracy was about the same.
It should be noted they were also using rep ops on that show.
 

Robert E Lee 1

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Of the originals, I have owned both and I prefer the P-53. A few years back, the history channel had the "old Marine DI compared the two for accuracy and handling. Her preferred the P-53 over the Springfield because it was 1 pound lighter. The accuracy was about the same.
Good to know thanks for sharing
 
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Craig L Barry

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That's not "exactly" true. EuroArms parts will not interchange with Armisport nor with Pedersoli nor with Parker Hale. They're often close enough to be made to fit with some careful filing etc.
That is true. While not handmade each manufacturer machine made their own version which were kind of based on the Parker Hale, vs using the same sealed pattern and gauges (which Parker Hale did). Euroarms has been out of business now for a long time and as a result replacement parts are getting scarce. I know gunsmith Todd Watts has been "fitting" some Armi Sport lock internal parts to return them to service.

However, the difficulties in fitting machine made parts between different manufacturers (which usually involves minor filing) pale in comparison to the challenges of working with original handmade arms. Sometimes there is almost nothing you can do. I had an original P53 Enfield at one time where the arbor shaft at 'rest' was in a diamond shape, vs the majority which are largely square or thereabouts when viewed from the top with the hammer removed. There was no fitting any other hammer to that particular weapon. So guess what cracked and had to be replaced?
 
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bill shack

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I prefer the euroarms p-53. I live fire it and can get a jagged hole at 50 yards if i work very hard, bench rest , all black powder exactly the same, all minie exactly the same . I have done it. i used to keep that paper target and show it off. but now the paper as teteriated from bringing it in my wallet for years. some of my re-enacting buddies have the springfield, i am surprised that not one has commented on the quickness to rust. yes the springfield look great all shiny and such but they rust like crazy.
 
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