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Thread: need jungle carbine expert

  1. #1
    Senior Veteran oramoc's Avatar
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    need jungle carbine expert

    hi folks a buddy of mine got a jungle carbine today at the gun show it is dated 1944 and is all matching bolt and mag and stock one thing I noticed it didn't have a hollowed bolt knob and me thinking I know it all which of course I don't said the bolt was wrong the owner of the gun went to grab a book he had to show me that the first run of these didn't have the hollow bolt but friend didn't care and just bought the gun so I didn't get to see if this were true. it is marked #5 and the number on the bolt like it was not messed with right style font so what do you guys say 1944 was the first year of the jungle carbine. thanks neil . oh by the way I picked up a mint Persian mauser 98/29 for 425.00 thought that was a heck of a deal for such a jewel seen them sell for much more.

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    Ian Skennerton, in his book .303 Rifle, No. 5 Mk I, says the drilled bolt-handle knobs were part of the jungle carbine as originally designed. So he does not say directly but implies no jungle carbines were made without the hole in the bolt handle.

    Skennerton also says both the receiver and bolt handle serial numbers were engraved, not stamped. Also, he says magazines and fore-ends were not marked with the serial until 1946. All of these things can have exceptions. I've read statements which were not completely accurate or all-encompassing, in several firearms books by highly respected authorities. In war-time production, sometimes things just did not always get done exactly according to the blueprints.

    The best way to be sure a rifle is a No. 5, not a converted No. 4, is the lightening cuts on the receiver and the barrel. Here's a link to some pretty good photos of jungle carbine features, including the lightening cuts. If these aren't present, what your friend likely bought is a No. 4 modified to look like a No. 5. http://www.angelfire.com/vt/milsurp/no5.html The barrel cuts in the Knox form (the large diameter rear section of the barrel) are so distinctive they cannot be missed. Remove the upper handguard to see them. I've never heard of these or the receiver cuts being faked, as the machining likely would be too expensive for a rifle that is relatively cheap.

    If he does have a No. 4, it is not the worst thing in the world. No. 5's had enough accuracy issues--the infamous "wandering zero"-- that the model was discontinued and declared obsolete in 1947. Although no one was ever able to state for certain the absolute cause of the problems, a lot of experts believe the lightening cuts in the receiver allowed the receiver to flex under recoil. The flash hider was also proven to degrade accuracy slightly. A converted No. 4 is probably going to be more accurate than a genuine No. 5.

    A few years ago, many of the parts needed to convert a No. 4 to a fair imitation of a No. 5 were available from GunParts Corp., formerly Numrich. They may still sell them.
    Time for the book "The Decline and Fall of the United States of America?"

  3. #3
    Senior Veteran oramoc's Avatar
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    thanks for the info the gun has the lightning cuts I have seen many real and fake jungle carbines and I belive that this is infact a real one just was not sure about the bolt being right.

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    If it has the lightening cuts, I would guess it's a No. 5 that got made and shipped at a time when the drilled bolt handles were not available. Matching serial numbers pretty hard to dispute too. But I have seen a bolt that I suspected had a number ground off and another number put on. Would not have the slightest idea if that could have been done at the factory, or later. Might be the non-drilled bolt handle actually makes your friend's gun a bit more valuable.

    Are you going to post some pics of your Persian?
    Time for the book "The Decline and Fall of the United States of America?"

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    Senior Veteran Sturmvogel's Avatar
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    oramoc, good morning. I pulled my No. 5 out and took a look at her. She is a No. 5 made in 8/45, has all matching numbers and the bolt handle is hollowed out. This is not a refurbished rifle from India as there is no retaining screw on the left side of the stock and the stock is the correct length from England. Serial numbers on the metal are all engraved except for the bottom of the mag which is stamped and obviously, the serial number on the bottom front of the handguard is stamped as well.

    Yeah, would like to see the Persian if you get a chance.
    COG # 1066

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    Buckshot's Avatar
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    oramoc sounds like a no.5 to me too. Mine is burried somewhere (lol). I would also like to see the Persian.
    Occam's razor, the simplest explanation will be the most plausible

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    Senior Veteran Stnwll's Avatar
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    Matching bolt numbers do not mean that was the bolt that originally came with the rifle. It is possible that a replacement bolt was fitted some time after it left the factory. IIRC, British and Commonwealth armorers would match a replacement bolt and then number it to the receiver. A bolt without a hole may have been the next part out of the bin that day.

  8. #8
    Senior Veteran oramoc's Avatar
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    I belive that you are the most correct in regards to this rifle. thanks neil
    Quote Originally Posted by Stnwll View Post
    Matching bolt numbers do not mean that was the bolt that originally came with the rifle. It is possible that a replacement bolt was fitted some time after it left the factory. IIRC, British and Commonwealth armorers would match a replacement bolt and then number it to the receiver. A bolt without a hole may have been the next part out of the bin that day.

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