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Thread: .22 LR training rifles

  1. #1

    .22 LR training rifles

    In my thread on .22 Target Rifles, a lot of the replies were about shooting BSA, Remington, or other military training rifles.

    The US Army has used .22 club target rifles off and on, the latest being the Kimber in the 1980s. They have used Winchester M-52, Remington 541 and 513 and others, Mossberg, Springfield Armory, and for a little while in the 1980s they used a .22 LR adapter for the M-16.

    In my collection, I have a New Zealand .22 LR training rifle built off an Enfield No. 1 MkIII and a CZ built like a little Mauser.

    A friend has a .22 LR Enfield built by BSA off a No.4 MkI, with a 5 round clip.
    He also has a German Mauser .22 LR training rifle for the K-98.

    Recently, there are dedicated .22 LR in the size and feel of the M-4 carbine, the Sig 556, HK MP5, AK-47, and pistols like the 1911A1, Glock 19, Beretta 92, SIG 220, etc.

    I am really wondering how common the .22 LR Enfields are in the UK, and who might hunt small game with them, or just shoot targets for fun/

  2. #2
    "I am really wondering how common the .22 LR Enfields are in the UK, and who might hunt small game with them, or just shoot targets for fun"

    The answer is not that common really but there are a few nocking around, more number 8's than probably any other model and these generally go for a fair old price. The problem with them all is that they weigh a ton, are usually all single shot only and fitting a scope which most people seem to prefer shooting with can be problematic.
    It's the calibre of the shooter that counts not the calibre of the rifle.

  3. #3
    I learned to shoot with one in the cadets,

    as far as I know they still use them.

  4. #4
    Yes Bob you're right they still use the number 8.
    It's the calibre of the shooter that counts not the calibre of the rifle.

  5. #5
    The last No. 8 Mk I which I saw sold for $895.00 a few months ago.

    Cabela's currently has a Lee Enfield SMLE SHT.22 Training Rifle for sale for $549.00 USD.

    There is an Enfield No 2 MK IV* N.Z. 22 Rifle like mine for sale for $749.00, and others for $795 and $899. Whew!!
    Mine is in super condition, in coach wood, converted 1917 for New Zealand. I have canvas 1918 sling for it, and let it wear the bayonet from its safe buddy, a 1918 SMLE. My No.2 drops the empty fired brass into a .303 magazine housing with has not spring and follower.

    My friend's No. 7, based off a No.4 Mk1, had a 5 round magazine, which can then be covered by an empty 10-round .303 magazine housing. It ejects the fired cases like a normal .22 bolt action.

    Both of them are a hoot to shoot with the open sights or the ladder aperture sight, busting clay pigeons off the backstop at 200 meters.



  6. #6
    The No 8's are the most commonly encountered Enfield trainers around here , but other marks do show up every now and then . Price wise , they are about the same as in the states .

    On a side note , an old friend of mine has an early model Ross 22 Trainer in extremely good condition . It's an interesting little rifle , basically a scaled down version of the WWI Canadian issue Ross . He won't even contemplate parting with it , but it would be worth a fair bit I'm sure .

    AB

  7. #7
    I see most are familiar with the No8 Trainer however training rifles and their use got back far further in Britian in fact to the inception of the Association of Miniature Rifles Clubs so the War Office drew up specifications for training rifles and BSA was engaged to produce them. These are the War Office Pattern training rifles made like scaled down Lee Enfield Mk1's. A quick web search found this information:-

    http://www.allaboutenfields.co.nz/no2/22-cal-trainers/

    During WW1 a few were scoped for sniper training. These are very rare and collectable. The normal trainers are in their own right but are not as rare although it seems few on these forums were aware of them.

    Greener amongst other firms also converted Martini Henry's to training rifles for the AMRC.

    BSA produce sporting rifles based upon the WO pattern rifles and here is a BSA No2A:-









    This one has had the adjustable barel mounter rear sight removed leaving only the mount soldered to the barrel and a BSA No8 folding aperture rear sight fitted the wrist. They even made a folding version for use by cyclists ............................ can you imaging that today................. ARU and helicopters spring to mind . Back when this was made .22 R/F was still corrosive so there is some pitting evident in the bore.
    Last edited by Brithunter; 08-07-2014 at 07:15. Reason: Additions

  8. #8
    I've had two #8 Trainers in my life and I regret trading them off. At the time I was concentrating on collecting military rifles and a friend was concentrating on collecting trainers. As I recall I picked up 4 very nice 303's including a Dispersion Rifle and a grenade launcher in the trade so I made out OK. On one occasion I took one to a NRA 100M Small Bore Silhouette match and won my class with iron sights -back when I was young and had good eyes!~Muir

  9. #9
    There is a little range about 30 miles from me where there regularly shoot Vintage matches, with 1903s, 1903A3, K98s, Turk Mausers, SMLE. They also have a .22 Training Rifle Match a few times a year. It counts as a military match with the Civillan Marksmanship Program, so you can buy surplus rifles and ammo.

    There is also a program now shooting Ruger 10/22s with Garand style sights, on reduced military torso targets.

    I love the sights on Brithunter's BSA.

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by Southern View Post
    There is a little range about 30 miles from me where there regularly shoot Vintage matches, with 1903s, 1903A3, K98s, Turk Mausers, SMLE. They also have a .22 Training Rifle Match a few times a year. It counts as a military match with the Civillan Marksmanship Program, so you can buy surplus rifles and ammo.

    There is also a program now shooting Ruger 10/22s with Garand style sights, on reduced military torso targets.

    I love the sights on Brithunter's BSA.
    BSA made the No8 sight in different staff heights. You often find them on the Martinis converted to .22 R/F for the Association of Minature Rifle Club. Somewhere I have a spare set but they are missing a small return spring. It's a tiny coil spring.

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