Original Rare British P-1888 Lee-Metford Cutaway Skeletal Display Rifle Action - Serial Number 515
Original Item: One-of-a-kind. We just received this very rare example from the estate of a longtime customer. Serial No. 515, meaning this is was originally a very early Rifle, Magazine, P-1888 Lee-Metford. It was later converted to British Charger-Loading Lee-Enfield Mk I* Action Skeleton. Manufactured before 1895 this is legally classified as an "antique" by the BATF. Please see Ian Skennerton's wonderful book THE LEE ENFIELD, Pages 527 to 529 for full information about these extremely rare training devices.
Beautifully executed by Victorian Craftsmen this is a mega rare example that has all the correct features of the earliest Lee-Metford P-1888 magazine Rifle production. The barrel shortened, and drilled, these were intended as training devices only, making this an amazingly rare item to appear on the open collector's market.
It was common to take earlier issued rifles to convert into an instructional model as using new production would have been a downright waste. The Butt shows a stamp indicating this was converted in 1902 after less than 20 years of active service.
This example is fitted with a .303 caliber magazine that has had the left side of the magazine casing milled out to show the inner workings. The barrel has been shortened and the front stock officially discarded. The butt wood has been cut back and part of the butt socket cut away to allow a view of the works of the system. The barrel has been demilled by drilling through the chamber from top to bottom. The weapon still retains the long-range rear sight to the left side and the correct brass butt plate with steel trap door.
Offered in excellent collector's condition this is clearly in the "Hen's Teeth" category of antique weapons. We have only ever had two of these exceedingly rare items.
History of the British Charger-Loading Lee-Enfield Mk I* Action Skeleton
Originally developed for armorers to test parts on, the various models of Lee skeleton actions were soon adapted to training troops. They have always been the rarest of the Lee family of models, from the Lee-Metford on. It was originally made as a Rifle, Magazine, Lee-Metford Mk I, possibly updated to a long Lee Enfield Mk I before being skeletonized. The skeletonizing, or as some call it, the sectioning, is beautifully done with the highest standards of metalworking.
This is a rare opportunity to own a truly once-in-a-lifetime Metford.
The whole in extremely fine display condition, and extremely hard to find, classified as a pre 1899 Antique. Probably the last one that we will ever have!
Year of Manufacture: Pre-1895
Caliber: .303 British
Cartridge Type: Centerfire Cartridge
Barrel Length: 30.2 Inches
Overall Length: 49.5 Inches
Action type: Bolt-Action
Feed System: magazine
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This product is not available for international shipping.
IMA considers all of our antique guns as non-firing, inoperable and/or inert. Title 18, U.S. Code, Section 921(a)(16) defines antique firearms as all guns made prior to 1899. This law exempts antique firearms from any form of gun control or special engineering because they are not legally considered firearms. No FFL, C&R or any license is required to possess, transport, sell or trade Antique guns. All rifles and muskets sold by IMA that were manufactured prior to 1899 are considered Antiques by the US BATF (United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco & Firearms). Therefore, all of IMA's Antique guns may be shipped to all US States.
These antique guns are not sold in "live" condition. They are sold as collector's items or as "wall hangers". Any attempt at restoring an antique gun to be operational is strongly discouraged and is done so at the risk of the customer. By purchasing an antique gun from IMA you thereby release IMA, its employees and corporate officers from any and all liability associated with use of our Antique guns.
Pre-1899 Manufacture, no licenses required.
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