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Shooting & Reloading - Mausers, Big Bores and others >> Lee Speed Forum & Archive

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Hendo
.224 member


Reged: 23/05/18
Posts: 4
Loc: South Australia
BSA No 3 Trade Pattern
      #320926 - 24/10/18 06:08 PM

Hi all, This is my first post. I have just acquired a BSA no 3 Trade pattern .303 rifle complete with m88 Bayonet and 5 shot magazine in quite reasonable condition. I recall only ever seeing one other come up for sale. This is the BSA lee Speed with the 20 inch barrel, military style stock, turned down bolt but doesn't have the checkering that the more expensive Officers models had. I'll take some photos and post when I get a chance. I've tried to do some research on this particular model but can't find much information at all, other than the picture and description in the BSA catalogues. can anyone provide any information or suggest where to get it. cheers

--------------------
.


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93x64mm
.400 member


Reged: 07/12/11
Posts: 1353
Loc: Nth QLD Australia
Re: BSA No 3 Trade Pattern [Re: Hendo]
      #320933 - 25/10/18 07:32 AM

Hendo,
If you try this gent who goes by the name of "Roy", he's rather knowledgeable in that side of things.
http://forums.nitroexpress.com/showflat....true#Post320758

Send him a PM & see what he can do for you; fingers crossed!

There are a few others about that are real .303 nuts, "Sarge" from NZ is also rather good as well.

Oh, by the way welcome to the NE forum!
93x64mm


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Daryl_S
.577 member


Reged: 10/08/05
Posts: 18162
Loc: Beautiful British Columbia, Ca...
Re: BSA No 3 Trade Pattern [Re: 93x64mm]
      #320934 - 25/10/18 08:12 AM

Welcome Hendo.
I always used to sneer at the .303 and all the guys around
these parts who grew up with them, shooting moose, bears, & maybe the odd deer as well.

Over these past 30 years in this Province, I've grown to
rather like the round & the rifles chambered for it.

Well done - good score!

--------------------
Daryl


"a rifle without hammers, is like a Spaniel without ears" Edward VII


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Iowa_303s
.375 member


Reged: 22/03/13
Posts: 883
Loc: Iowa, USA
Re: BSA No 3 Trade Pattern [Re: Daryl_S]
      #320939 - 25/10/18 02:22 PM

Welcome to the forum Hendo!
9.3x64mm is correct, Roy is very knowledgable and he has a website that is a good source of Lee Speed information.

--------------------
Matt

formerly known as Iowa_303

"Once your reputation is ruined you can live your life quite freely."

"Enkelkinder über alles"


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englishman_ca
.224 member


Reged: 05/08/17
Posts: 26
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Re: BSA No 3 Trade Pattern [Re: Iowa_303s]
      #320940 - 26/10/18 03:26 AM

What information are you looking for? Technical and/or historical?

--------------------
Look to your front, mark your target when it comes.


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Hendo
.224 member


Reged: 23/05/18
Posts: 4
Loc: South Australia
Re: BSA No 3 Trade Pattern [Re: englishman_ca]
      #320958 - 26/10/18 05:52 PM

Hi,
I'm looking for some background and history of these BSA carbines. I have what I think is a BSA 21 inch barrel .303 Lee Speed no 3 pattern Trade rifle. , the lee speed stamp indicates its post 1897. the serial no is low, ie 3 digits only, turned down bolt, 5 round magazine etc.
when were they made, what production numbers, where used etc. etc.
What I've seen suggests they were made for British officers for the Boer war and WW1 but thats as far as I've got.

--------------------
.


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englishman_ca
.224 member


Reged: 05/08/17
Posts: 26
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Re: BSA No 3 Trade Pattern [Re: Hendo]
      #321135 - 01/11/18 12:38 PM

Sounds like you are on the right track. There is not much published information about them.

The study of BSA and LSA comercial rifles is a work on its own. The Lee Speed patents were emblazoned upon sporting rifles starting from the days of the Mk.II Lee Metford, intoduced into service in 1892. The commercial rifles were quick to follow built upon that action. They were still available in the BSA catalog post WWI. That opens a wide window, time wise.

Proof markings help to narrow down the date window. Features and options also help.

I am but a student of the Lee Enfield. It is all quite like detective work. I would need to see pics of the rifle overall plus any and all the markings to try to read the clues.

No guarantee that I will be able to date it. There are members of this board much more knowledgeable than me about these. I am wrong as many times as I am right, but I'm willing to have a crack at it.

There is a book on the subject to be published shortly by a member of this board. We await its arrival with great anticipation.

--------------------
Look to your front, mark your target when it comes.


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jc5
.300 member


Reged: 10/10/07
Posts: 156
Loc: West Coast, USA
Re: BSA No 3 Trade Pattern [Re: englishman_ca]
      #321321 - 07/11/18 06:47 PM

Working on the book, and these trade pattern carbines will be covered in detail. Just returned from two weeks' research in the UK, wrapping up loose ends...I didn't get fully 100% of my research questions answered, but close... definitely enough to finish the book. Sometimes, you just have to confirm what's NOT there, in addition to what IS there. Even if the answer wasn't available, I had to confirm that it really wasn't available. Jet lag---hope that makes sense.

What is sobering is that when you ponder some questions about these old guns, you realize there's no one left alive who knows the answer... AND there were maybe only half-a-dozen people who EVER knew the answer!

Status of the book: manuscript about 50% finished (page count will be about 336 pp), but the writing is fairly easy and goes fast... what lies between here and publication is crunching the numbers. I have info on over 600 surviving Lee-Speeds (and about the same amount from ledgers), but all that data on markings, features, specs, needs to be entered into Excel and made to speak.

Hendo...if you send me some pics, I can tell you pretty closely when it was made. Still catching up on email and PMs, so I apologize if you have already sent it.

Short story: these carbines were produced for about twenty years prior to WWI. Sporting models and target models continued to be made for years after that. The type you have enjoyed its peak popularity in 1899-1902 when officers were outfitting themselves for the Boer War. (The Boers used them too). How many were made? We don't have exact figures, only educated estimates. Not too many.

If you know it's a "No 3 Pattern" then I assume you have a reprint of the c1912 BSA catalog. For now, that's as good a source as any on these carbines. Be aware that there were other variations not listed in that catalog.

They are handy rifles, aren't they? It's easy to see why people liked them, and still do. There are similar carbines from this same era that have the same appeal: the cavalry carbines, the New Zealand carbine, the RIC. These BSA trade patterns were likely the inspiration for the NZ carbines that came soon after. Doug Munro wrote a great article on this subject a few years ago in Ian Skennerton's "Collector" magazine. I highly recommend that piece for further reading.

...
One last bit about the book, though I may have mentioned it elsewhere: I took some of the material from my manuscript on the .375 Express version of the Lee-Enfield sporting rifle and produced an article for the next HBSA Journal. If you want to see a preview of the Lee-Speed book, check out that article when it is published (by end of the year, I hope). The article is strictly about the history and development, not a reference guide or collector's guide. The final book, however, will serve as both a history and a reference. I decided to omit any coverage of reloading and/or using the rifles today. Mainly because I'm not an expert there, and I'll leave that for others to cover.

--------------------
Researching Lee Speeds and all commercial Lee Enfields. If you have data to share or questions, please send me a PM.


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Hendo
.224 member


Reged: 23/05/18
Posts: 4
Loc: South Australia
Re: BSA No 3 Trade Pattern [Re: jc5]
      #321324 - 07/11/18 08:40 PM

Many thanks JC5 for your information, I have emailed you directly with some photo's so hopefully you can provide some more details.
As soon as I get my Photobucket sorted and working I'll post some photos of this carbine as well as my .303 and .375 Lee Speeds.cheers Hendo.

--------------------
.


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