My father-in-law has two rifles that he is wanting to get some information about. One is stamped with " U.S. MODEL OF 1917 EDDYSTONE 650550" and the other is stamped "GR BSA Co 1911 SHILE lll". I am sure that the second is an Enfield.
Prior to the outbreak of WWI the British had decided to do away with their Main Battle Rifle, the Lee-Enfield. After extensive testing, they decided on the Pattern 1914 Enfield (P-14) rifle. Unfortunately, with the outbreak of WWI, the British did not have the machinery and tooling necessary to mass produce large quantities of these new rifles as they were making Lee-Enfields as fast as they could. They contracted with Winchester, Remington and Eddystone (a subsidiary of Remington) in the US to manufacture the vast majority of these rifles for them.
Fast forward a couple of years. The United States entered WWI. It soon became evident, since the Springfield Armory was our sole provider of military rifles, that we did not have sufficient quantities of our Main Battle Rifle, the M1903, nor could we quickly manufacture enough of these rifles to arm the number of troops necessary for this war.
Someone at the War Department in Washington, D.C. realized that it was a simple matter to rechamber the P-14 rifles being made by three US companies from .303 British to .30-06 Springfield, thus insuring enough rifles to arm US troops. It was so ordered and The U.S. Model of 1917 rifle (M-17) was born. It was designated a Substitute Standard rifle for US forces.
Interesting factoid. The US manufactured and issued more M-17 rifles during WWI than it did M1903 rifles.
Is there a website for either rifle where I can determine the value and restoration costs? Also to find out is they were used in WWI? With the information that you have given me, I should be able fire a Springfield 30-06 from the 1917 when it is operational again, right?
The Enfield is catching before the bolt fully seats in the chamber. I don't think there is anything wrong with the 1917, but I am going to get it check before we do anything with it. Does the price go up if they are operational?
I'm a farm kid, I have a dozen shotguns and various hunting rifles and have always been intrigued by tactical and military rifles. My police buddy just got a S&W M&P15X and I really like it so I'm looking to spend some money on my first AR rifle. What is a good reliable AR model for a beginner in the genre.