Author Topic: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!  (Read 1930 times)

Offline RattlesnakeJack

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #20 on: December 20, 2023, 11:08:32 PM »
Snake Oil, for some reason the Martini-Henry (along with the Martini-Metford and Martini-Enfield) have been very commonly faked, and a lot of them have ended up in the USA as "bring-backs" from Afghanistan and other nearby places. I wouldn't be surprised if there are more Khyber fakes for sale in the US than there are genuine Martinis, so it definitely pays to exercise extreme caution in buying.  Do let us know if you can get this seller to take this one back …

In Canada we are fortunate in having had a lot more genuine Martinis floating around, and relatively few fakes … but the supply seems to be drying up here also, and prices have certainoy been climbing. 

Since the carbine was a diversion from the personna you had originally planned, I assume that a rifle would still be accceptable to you … perhaps even preferable.  If so IMA, as suggested by Niederlander, may far and away be your best bet in the USA as long as you stick with one of the ones they describe as "Original British P-1871 Martini-Henry MkII Short Lever Rifle".  Stay away from their Nepalese Gahendra and Francotte-type rifles … they are Nepalese made,   and in any event not suitable for any British Empire impression you might decide to do.  Similarly, although the "P-1885" Mk IV rifles are cheaper, they were never issued to any British Regular Army unit. their use having been limited primarily to the Indian Army, with some known issue to Volunteer units in the UK. 

If I were ordering from IMA (though I wouldn't since I currently own three Martini-Henry rifles with Canadian military provenance) I would probably stick with a "cleaned and complete" rifle … even springing extra for the "hand select" option, if they still offer that … and, considering your intended use, the extra cost for a rifle with bayonet and scabbard is well worth it.  (Finding a decent bayonet, with scabbard., separately will take time and effort, and cost at least that much, if not more, anyway.)
 
Just to keep your desire active, here is one of my rifles …  ;D





Rattlesnake Jack Robson, Scout, Rocky Mountain Rangers, North West Canada, 1885
Major John M. Robson, Royal Scots of Canada, 1883-1901
Sgt. John Robson, Queen's Own Rifles of Canada, 1885
Bvt. Col, Commanding International Dept. and Div.  of Canada, Grand Army of the Frontier

Offline Snake Oil

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #21 on: December 21, 2023, 04:49:51 AM »
I'm not sure which side of the line he falls... there were chips in the stock that were not mentioned, but he truly seemed as  unaware as I about the details on the markings... so I don't think intentional... the lack of rifling was a sore point for me!

I like the idea of IMA, but I landed on the couch for half that price... maybe if I am really good next year Santa will bring one to me for Christmas.
A day shooting is good for what ails ya!

Offline Major 2

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #22 on: December 21, 2023, 07:52:58 AM »
 It seems you are in communication with the seller, and the piece will be winging its way for the return?
I looked at the IMA site, (I have purchased from them before) and saw the Original British P-1885 Martini-Henry MkIV Rifle Pattern B they offer with 4 interest-free payments of $287.50

IN FOR A PENNY, IN FOR A POUND, as the British say  :) 

Here hoping for your harmonious outcome.

when planets align...do the deal !

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #23 on: Today at 11:57:08 PM »

Offline RattlesnakeJack

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #23 on: December 21, 2023, 04:34:28 PM »
I looked at the IMA site, (I have purchased from them before) and saw the Original British P-1885 Martini-Henry MkIV Rifle Pattern B they offer ...

As I mentioned above, I would strongly advise against a Mark IV rifle (even thought they tend to be the least expensive) because that model was never issued to British Regulars, and in any event was too late for most of the periods that a GAF shooter or reenactor would likely want to portray …
 
The first three Marks (i.e. I, II and III) are very close in outward appearance to one another, so all will "do" for any period impression for which the absolutely correct model of Martini-Henry is not a "must".  However, the Mark IV is very distinctly different in appearance, such that it is quite easily distinguishable from the earlier rifles, even with a quick glance from a distance! Here is a comparison of the action area profile of a Mark I rifle (at top - the Mk II and III rifles retained the same profile) and the Mark IV profile (at bottom) -
 


Most of the Mark IV rifles also have a very noticeably different "ramped" front sight profile … and do not even accept the same patterns of bayonet as the earlier Marks -



Rattlesnake Jack Robson, Scout, Rocky Mountain Rangers, North West Canada, 1885
Major John M. Robson, Royal Scots of Canada, 1883-1901
Sgt. John Robson, Queen's Own Rifles of Canada, 1885
Bvt. Col, Commanding International Dept. and Div.  of Canada, Grand Army of the Frontier

Offline Major 2

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #24 on: December 21, 2023, 06:46:13 PM »
Good advice from the sage   

"...I would strongly advise against a Mark IV rifle (even though they tend to be the least expensive) because that model was never issued to British Regulars, and in any event was too late for most of the periods that a GAF shooter or reenactor would likely want to portray"

I did not realize these   :-X
when planets align...do the deal !

Offline Snake Oil

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #25 on: December 21, 2023, 08:43:56 PM »
Excellent advice... I appreciate it... I looked at IMA originally, but the sticker shock... definitely willing to not make the same mistake again!
A day shooting is good for what ails ya!

Offline RattlesnakeJack

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #26 on: December 21, 2023, 09:33:05 PM »
At the risk of "over-pontificating", I will add that the Mark IV Martini-Henry was not designed as a Martini-Henry at all!

Rather, the British War Department had developed a completely new, reduced-bore (.402 cal.) single-shot rifle designated as the "Enfield-Martini" while not quite so far along in developing their proposed repeating rifle, the .303 Magazine Lee-Metford. 

They had gotten as far as having actually manufactured over 70,000 Enfield-Martini .402" rifles (of two slightly different patterns, actually) with this distinctive-looking re-designed receiver and significantly longer lever, when they rather belatedly realized that it was a very poor idea to be putting themselves into a position of having three different service rifles - i.e. the .450 Martini-Henry, .402 Enfield-Martini and .303 Lee-Metford - using three very dissimilar cartridges. 

The decision was made to halt further production of the Enfield-Martini, and to re-barrel the .402 rifles already produced for the .450 Martini-Henry cartridge, the modified rifles being redesignated as the Martini-Henry Mark IV - Pattern A or Pattern B, depending on which of the two .402 variants had been converted - and also to continue production of a somewhat tweaked version barreled in .450 Martini-Henry caliber (Pattern C) ….

Here, for what it may be worth, is a period diagram of the .402 Enfield-Martini cartridge -


Rattlesnake Jack Robson, Scout, Rocky Mountain Rangers, North West Canada, 1885
Major John M. Robson, Royal Scots of Canada, 1883-1901
Sgt. John Robson, Queen's Own Rifles of Canada, 1885
Bvt. Col, Commanding International Dept. and Div.  of Canada, Grand Army of the Frontier

Offline Hair Trigger Jim

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #27 on: December 21, 2023, 09:37:33 PM »
I, for one, enjoy it when you "over-pontificate"!  I always learn something.

Offline RattlesnakeJack

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #28 on: December 21, 2023, 09:44:22 PM »
I, for one, enjoy it when you "over-pontificate"!  I always learn something.

 ;D Glad to hear it Jim!

(I am more accustomed to seeing listeners frantically looking for the nearest exit …  ;) )
Rattlesnake Jack Robson, Scout, Rocky Mountain Rangers, North West Canada, 1885
Major John M. Robson, Royal Scots of Canada, 1883-1901
Sgt. John Robson, Queen's Own Rifles of Canada, 1885
Bvt. Col, Commanding International Dept. and Div.  of Canada, Grand Army of the Frontier

Offline RattlesnakeJack

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #29 on: December 21, 2023, 09:46:25 PM »
Excellent advice... I appreciate it... I looked at IMA originally, but the sticker shock... definitely willing to not make the same mistake again!

Snake Oil - unfortunately, unless you stumble onto some sort of "once-in-a-lifetime" price from someone who doesn't know what they've got, I'm afraid that the price of just about any genuine Martini-Henry rifle in serviceable condition with a decent bore will be right up there in line with IMA's prices … or higher …

A bargain-basement "I can't believe I'm getting it for this low a price" gun is almost guaranteed to be a Khyber Pass Special … or of no better than wall-hanger quality … :-\
Rattlesnake Jack Robson, Scout, Rocky Mountain Rangers, North West Canada, 1885
Major John M. Robson, Royal Scots of Canada, 1883-1901
Sgt. John Robson, Queen's Own Rifles of Canada, 1885
Bvt. Col, Commanding International Dept. and Div.  of Canada, Grand Army of the Frontier

Offline Major 2

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #30 on: December 21, 2023, 10:13:55 PM »
When Grant posts I always learn....
when planets align...do the deal !

Offline Snake Oil

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #31 on: December 22, 2023, 07:06:41 AM »
I appreciate all the information.

The beauty of the internet is the plethora of information available, but it is very difficult to navigate. Yours is the voice of experience and is far more valuable!!

I appreciate the more concise nature of your information, confirming much of what I have read. There is a steep learning curve with antique firearms... especially outside of one's own country! I greatly appreciate the help!!
A day shooting is good for what ails ya!

Offline Niederlander

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #32 on: December 22, 2023, 07:09:19 PM »
Yep, the trick is to find information provided by people who actually know what they're talking about.  Grant is an EXCELLENT resource for all things British Empire, especially Canadian!
"There go those Nebraskans, and all hell couldn't stop them!"

Offline Major 2

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #33 on: December 22, 2023, 11:58:11 PM »
Yep, the trick is to find information provided by people who actually know what they're talking about.  Grant is an EXCELLENT resource for all things British Empire, especially Canadian!

That is a fact.
when planets align...do the deal !

Offline Snake Oil

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #34 on: December 23, 2023, 07:35:21 AM »
The real trick is to do it before you by a bad one!

Lesson Learned!!
A day shooting is good for what ails ya!

Offline Niederlander

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #35 on: December 23, 2023, 09:16:10 AM »
Will they take that one back?
"There go those Nebraskans, and all hell couldn't stop them!"

Offline Snake Oil

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Re: A very merry Christmas to me... as I sleep on the couch!!
« Reply #36 on: December 23, 2023, 10:49:48 PM »
I sent it back... now I am waiting on the return payment.
A day shooting is good for what ails ya!

 

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