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View Full Version : Identification: Lowest S/N Enfield L1A1


Abominog
February 07, 2007, 21:38
Here's one I think you'll find interesting.

Enfield began limited production in March 1957, having produced only 124 rifles by 27 May 1957. I have been unable to ascertain how many were made in the latter part of 1957.

Here is Enfield, 1957 first year of production S/N A5642. Note that somewhere along the line the S/N had been applied to the lower receiver (was the upper still with the S/N?)

No doubt, Kevin has an earlier one. But amongst us mortals, does anyone have an earlier PRODUCTION (not X14) Enfield L1A1?

neminion
February 08, 2007, 01:49
From what I have read, BSA went into production the same time when production for the L1A1 was given the green light.

I have UB57 #A389

Abominog
September 18, 2007, 21:03
Have some time to document this piece. Boy, did they love stamps back then!

Abominog
September 18, 2007, 21:05
Part number and date behind pistol grip.

Abominog
September 18, 2007, 21:07
More stamps on lower receiver tang...wonder if all this stressed the metal?

Abominog
September 18, 2007, 21:16
BHO even Enfielded!

Abominog
September 18, 2007, 21:17
Front Sling Swivel too...

Abominog
September 18, 2007, 21:19
Gas nut...too bad it's a 1961...

Abominog
September 18, 2007, 21:20
At least the bolt is still Enfield 1957.

Abominog
September 18, 2007, 21:26
Too bad, on this L1A1 example the poor Enfield 1957 at some point was "repaired" with a 30 year younger barrel and gas block made as a replacement part manufactured in 1987.

It's hard to believe this baby is 50 years old! Compare that to a '57 Chevy!

Thanks for looking. Hope it was interesting.

Abominog
September 26, 2007, 23:03
OK, so nobody cares. *sniff*

Was hoping somebody in the know would comment on the stampings on the tang on the lower. Kevin, you mad at me?

chrsdwns
September 30, 2007, 10:34
Thats a Parker Hale barrel for the replacement. Parker Hale rebuilt a large number of L1A1s in the '80s. The early L1A1 had a lot more stamps, probably due to the added QC inspections used for initial start up production

Some may also have been added during upgrades or reworks over during inital production or over the years

There are not nearly as many proofs on later production examples.

Serial numbering was cryptic during the Cold War so it is hard to tell where that one stood in the production

That is the earliest L1A1 I have seen.

Abominog
October 05, 2007, 20:33
Hey Neminion, yours would then be the earliest BSA. How about some pics?

neminion
October 06, 2007, 01:32
Mine is just a collection of parts. Will try to get some pics in the daylight tomorrow.

neminion
October 08, 2007, 00:03
My pics aren't great, but here goes. First are 2 BSA lowers, a 57 and 59. Both have identicle markings on the bottom, the 57 has a tick coat of paint almost obscuring the numbers and has a "Q" stamp.

neminion
October 08, 2007, 00:07
59

neminion
October 08, 2007, 00:10
Both

neminion
October 08, 2007, 00:17
Next are a few gas blocks. Enfield, BSA, Parker H. Some have FTR dates.

neminion
October 08, 2007, 00:18
more..

neminion
October 08, 2007, 00:20
more...

neminion
October 08, 2007, 00:26
Next up are the barrels.

neminion
October 08, 2007, 00:26
More...

neminion
October 08, 2007, 00:27
More..

neminion
October 08, 2007, 00:37
Since the parts are from kits in storage, I dug in and extracted some of the different larger parts for the shots but its far from the entire inventory. Sadly the Brits rebuilt many of them and everything is mixed like a chinese puzzle. One of these days I plan on sorting the individual parts for a closer mfg and date match in each kit but only 2 or 3 will be perfect matches. Hope you enjoyed the pics.

Abominog
October 08, 2007, 09:45
Interesting- note the difference in hight between the two pistol grip studs.

And that latch lever is the ugliest I've seen- wonder what the story is!


Thanks. Like to see more.

ptoguy
September 26, 2008, 22:23
Originally posted by Abominog

Here is Enfield, 1957 first year of production S/N A5642. Note that somewhere along the line the S/N had been applied to the lower receiver (was the upper still with the S/N?)


I've got the lower from a rifle about 1000 lower than this.
I'll try and take a pic.

Azrial
September 27, 2008, 02:20
Mine is UE 6D - A541XX

Is that older?

I admit, I do not know much about my Enfield, but this is an interesting thread!

Abominog
September 29, 2008, 06:25
Originally posted by Azrial
Mine is UE 6D - A541XX

Is that older?

I admit, I do not know much about my Enfield, but this is an interesting thread!

It's "60" not "6D", so yours is 1960. Still a rather early production date.

kalliste
September 29, 2008, 07:05
Well here's my theories on what might turn up, guessing from what I saw in my time in the British Army:

Rifles issued to, for instance, infantry battalions would have seen hard use and would be rebuilt numerous times before being destroyed as unserviceable or retired as the SA80 came into use.

Rifles held in war reserve were used - they got issued to units who required extra rifles for something like recruit training or a big exercise and then returned to storage. Rifles taken out of reserve stocks showed use and repair but I don't know if, where there were large stocks, some might be still untouched in the factory wrapping because they'd never got around to needing those at the back of the pile. It's possible. We're talking about big warehouses full of crates of rifles.

Rifles issued to units that didn't really want them, never used them, and simply locked them away. For instance, a medical unit I went to had a couple of factory fresh still in the wrap rifles and the guy complained they were never going to use them and the paperwork was a bother.

Occasionally troops will have swapped bits between rifles, whether by accident or design (even though that wasn't allowed).

So, I'd expect the vast majority of rifles to be bitzas from normal repairs over the service life of the rifle. But some NIB will be kicking around somewhere - or were at one time.

Azrial
September 29, 2008, 13:07
Originally posted by Abominog
It's "60" not "6D", so yours is 1960. Still a rather early production date.
Damn, you are correct! Thanks!

GM4spd
December 06, 2008, 11:16
Just checked my lower 960-0071,serial by safety is "UB59A56870",gas
block,barrel,gas tube all have "60" on them. Pete

Falfegnügen
December 06, 2008, 20:15
Not Enfield, but I have UB 58 A5505.

Reason I'm posting is that I'm curious about something I've never understood with the UK rifles. Are there there seperate serial number sequences for the various makers? or is the there only one number sequence, the "A5505" number, for UK L1A1's?

Graham2
January 10, 2009, 03:54
A lot of the L1A1s that were reconditioned by Parker Hale in the 1980s were kept in storage for years. When it all kicked off in Sierra Leone at the end of the 90s, thousands were given to local militia (for some reason!) and a lot ended up being used against our troops. It made me want to cry that my government would give these fine rifles to a bunch of blood thirsty, drug crazed murderers, but prohibit me, a law abiding citizen from owning one!
It's a bit like the situation we'll have in 2010 when the Olympics comes to London. People from all over the world will come with their legally held target pistols, but our shooters aren't allowed to own their guns in the UK, but have to travel to Switzerland (where the government trust our people!) if we win any medals for shooting, it'll be a miracle!

Beware the government that distrusts and despises the people it serves!!!

L1A1 59
February 11, 2009, 00:16
UE 59 A31888 with lots of mixed match parts, but a damn fine shooter!:biggrin:

New2Brass
January 25, 2010, 08:35
What is the differance in the UB and UE in the serial numbers? are there other codes? and was the uppers serialised?

Bigger_Is_Better
January 25, 2010, 16:25
UB is manufactured by BSA?

UE is manufactured by Enfield.

I'll try and get some pictures of my UE 58 up later. Yes, the serial number was on the lower and the upper.

Here are the only pictures I have on this computer.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/DSC01000.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/DSC01001.jpg

As a side note, I no longer have this one cut upper. It is in the possession of Entreprise Arms for use as a pattern on their Brit Cut Uppers.

Bigger_Is_Better
January 25, 2010, 17:43
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/Early%20Bolt/DSC00484.jpg

D over E is hard to see on the hammer as it's a light strike. It's on the face side on the flat above the pin hole.
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/Early%20Bolt/DSC00494.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/Early%20Bolt/DSC00496.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/Early%20Bolt/DSC00493.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/Early%20Bolt/DSC00492.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/Early%20Bolt/DSC00491.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/Early%20Bolt/DSC00490.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/Early%20Bolt/DSC00489.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/Early%20Bolt/DSC00488.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/Early%20Bolt/DSC00487.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/Early%20Bolt/DSC00486.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/Early%20Bolt/DSC00485.jpg


This bolt carrier wasn't with the kit, I purchased it later.
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/Early%20Bolt/DSC00500.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/Early%20Bolt/DSC00501.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/Early%20Bolt/DSC00499.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/Early%20Bolt/DSC00498.jpg

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v85/aaronn/Early%20Bolt/DSC00497.jpg

glenbjackson19
November 21, 2010, 02:23
whats an "A" and "B" stamp(separated)? got it on side and rear(above locking surface)
and then a crown with arrow under it stamp/electric pencil ?
year is 63

FALonious
December 11, 2010, 15:30
http://www.gunbroker.com/Auction/ViewItem.aspx?Item=204365033


UE 57 A2353, earlier than Abominog's me thinks. Nice clean looking lower too.
Not mine nore do I know the guy.

http://i54.tinypic.com/wb6m8h.jpg

herd118
April 03, 2011, 13:43
Interesting. I have UE57 A419. It must be somewhat early.

mmcalc
November 08, 2011, 07:10
Interesting thread. I have lower UE 57 A567. It came with a parts kits taken from a refurbished rifle, so it has a mixed bag of BSA and Enfield parts on it.

Mike

FUUN063
December 04, 2011, 18:16
Here's an early one, too. Not mine, I just saw it recently for sale.

http://www.falfiles.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=321544


Leland
:fal:

1911su16b870
May 06, 2012, 19:36
I have one of the Century Franken-L1A1 sporter lower metal with UE57 A3274. They drilled out the PG screw boss.

I have another UE59 lower with no Serial Number, but with a long oval that ...is that correct? An armory replacement?

FALonious
June 02, 2012, 13:02
I have one of the Century Franken-L1A1 sporter lower metal with UE57 A3274. They drilled out the PG screw boss.
This can be fixed....contact member L/FN


I have another UE59 lower with no Serial Number, but with a long oval that ...is that correct? An armory replacement?

Serial has been scrubbed, by who is anyone’s guess. I know Mark, G/P does this a lot. I would bet it was after being sold as surplus.

gew98
July 07, 2013, 00:05
This thread is gonna have me going through my pre ban enterprise L1A1...But I do know off hand it has a 57 dated charging handle.

Abominog
December 03, 2013, 13:25
I just found lower UE57 A398

mrclark303
December 04, 2013, 04:43
A lot of the L1A1s that were reconditioned by Parker Hale in the 1980s were kept in storage for years. When it all kicked off in Sierra Leone at the end of the 90s, thousands were given to local militia (for some reason!) and a lot ended up being used against our troops. It made me want to cry that my government would give these fine rifles to a bunch of blood thirsty, drug crazed murderers, but prohibit me, a law abiding citizen from owning one!
It's a bit like the situation we'll have in 2010 when the Olympics comes to London. People from all over the world will come with their legally held target pistols, but our shooters aren't allowed to own their guns in the UK, but have to travel to Switzerland (where the government trust our people!) if we win any medals for shooting, it'll be a miracle!

Beware the government that distrusts and despises the people it serves!!!

Hi,

There is a whole murky story regarding the rebuilt war reserve L1A1's that were donated to good causes around the world....some went to Sierra Leone......others went to the Lebanon (and other countries I am sure) and were "lost".....thats another story!

If you look at contemporary late 90's news footage from Sierra Leone, you can see the drug fueled nut jobs, jumping up and down waving machetes and pristine L1A1's!

When the government collapsed, the militias just walked into Army bases and took large quantities of both L1's and GPMG's.

These rifles really were pristine, having been totally rebuilt with new components, repainted and fitted with brand new furniture.......what a terrible waste of L1A1's and a tragedy for that country, we (the UK) effectively made sure those nutters were very well armed indeed, with dreadful consequences!

enbloc8
December 10, 2013, 23:55
Hi,

There is a whole murky story regarding the rebuilt war reserve L1A1's that were donated to good causes around the world....some went to Sierra Leone......others went to the Lebanon (and other countries I am sure) and were "lost".....thats another story!

Years ago I recall reading a NY Times story about a commission investigating Belfast's "Bloody Sunday" from 1972...it said that they were going all the way to Lebanon and Sierra Leone to try and track down the rifles involved for ballistic testing. I thought "good luck with that"!