Wednesday, September 11, 2013


This is coolbert:

Thanks for this comment to the blog by GEM:

"In the late 1970's in Barbados, my friends who were cadets were expected to handle the 15 rpm 'rapid,' admittedly with a 303 firing .22 rounds. I have no doubt that, starting with 10 rounds loaded, then reloading, given the 303 mechanism, reports of making 20 - 30 RPM were more than possible for a trained shooter. Exceptionally skilled ones would exceed that and Sgt Snoxall was exactly that, an Instructor in musketry. I wonder what was his fate, given how rapidly the Old Contemptibles were used up in the opening battles of the Great War."

This is the British SMLE rifle as carried by cadets and firing the .22 caliber LR round. Cadets able to learn marksmanship, maintenance and carrying of the weapon, and use for Drill & Ceremonies undoubtedly as well.

That training version of the SMLE having the designation:

British  Enfield #2 MK IV Training Rifle  (22LR Caliber Single Shot Training Rifle),  .22 Cal Rim-Fire Short Rifle Mk IV, and  Rifle No 2 Mk IV*

From the Surplus Rifle web site an entire page devoted to the SMLE training rifle:

"A rimfire trainer for the military makes sense.   Many recruits have never even held a rifle, much less fired one.  Such men may well be intimidated by the recoil & report of the service cartridge.  Teaching the various points of marksmanship become easier when the recruit isn’t worried about getting kicked or the noise factor. "

"Another point in favor of the rimfire trainer is the training budget.  Rimfire ammunition costs but a fraction of the cost of the service cartridge.  This keeps the bean counters  very happy."

"There is a third, and extremely important factor in favor of service rifle conversions; the recruit is familiarized with the exact weapon he will use in the field.  Other then the recoil & noise factor, the soldier will be totally familiarized with his weapon."  

AND of course as previously mentioned the SMLE used by the cadets for Drill & Ceremonies. Marching, present to the colors, the manual of arms, etc.

The SMLE training rifle modified by a "straightforward" process not so complicated:

"The conversion process is quite straightforward.  The barrel has been replaced with a .22 caliber barrel.  The bolt head has an offset firing pin hole and the extractor is longer and correctly contoured for the rim of the .22 LR.  The magazine has had its follower & follower spring removed"

Cadets firing the 25 meter range for the .22 LR round required to load each round by hand singly, expended rounds ejected into the empty magazine. But that level of marksmanship and firing ability with the rifle not diminished, 15 RPM still the expectation for a cadet, careful aimed shots with speed the goal.


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