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Martini Henry Mk11 Artillery carbine

Article about: I went on one of my forays to Earlestown market yesterday, and on one of the junk stalls I came across this Martini Henry carbine which had been converted from a Mk11 rifle. It isn't the bes

  1. #1

    Default Martini Henry Mk11 Artillery carbine

    I went on one of my forays to Earlestown market yesterday, and on one of the junk stalls I came across this Martini Henry carbine which had been converted from a Mk11 rifle. It isn't the best of examples, but it is a totally original 577/455 cal which had been shot through and then consigned to DP by the military. The barrel has been cut just in front of the breech, and the breech has been plugged with a block of brass.

    There are no markings on the receiver or barrel, but several parts are WD stamped, and the woodwork is stamped DP. It has had a refinish at some stage, but I would guess it has probably been done by the military - maybe at the time of its conversion. Someone had given the woodwork a high-gloss varnish. But after the weapon was stripped and the varnish removed, I gave the wood a good coating of teak oil, and then a generous coating of beeswax polish. The end result was much improved.

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    Author of... 'Belfast Diaries: A Gunner In Northern Ireland'... 'A Tough Nut To Crack: Andersonstown.. Voices From 9 Battery Royal Artillery In Northern Ireland'... 'An Accrington Pal: The Diaries of Pte Jack Smallshaw, September 1914 To March 1919'.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Martini Henry Mk11 Artillery carbine

    What a great find!......
    It's a wasted trip baby. Nobody said nothing about locking horns with no Tigers.



    I'm Spartacus, not really i'm Paul!...

  3. #3

    Default Re: Martini Henry Mk11 Artillery carbine

    Quote by Gunny Hartmann View Post
    What a great find!......
    Hi Gunny. When I stripped it down I found that the barrel was loose. The action on it is better than on my shootable Martini. Now if I could get a replacement carbine barrel it would make an absolutely cracking shooter! I didn't buy it, the seller was after 250. I gave some items I had with me for it. But I don't think I did to bad out of it.

    Cheers,
    Steve.
    Author of... 'Belfast Diaries: A Gunner In Northern Ireland'... 'A Tough Nut To Crack: Andersonstown.. Voices From 9 Battery Royal Artillery In Northern Ireland'... 'An Accrington Pal: The Diaries of Pte Jack Smallshaw, September 1914 To March 1919'.

  4. #4
    ?

    Default Re: Martini Henry Mk11 Artillery carbine

    Very nice aquisition,I like the old-timers.....Pete.
    JEDEM DAS SEINE

  5. #5

    Default Re: Martini Henry Mk11 Artillery carbine

    Good looking carbine you have there-I take it that MHs are legal as runners in Britain due to the age of the ammunition.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Martini Henry Mk11 Artillery carbine

    Quote by lithgow View Post
    Good looking carbine you have there-I take it that MHs are legal as runners in Britain due to the age of the ammunition.
    This is where the laws on gun ownership get a bit silly in the UK. I can legally own without a licence a Martini Henry in 577/455 as long as I don't intend to shoot it. The weapon falls under section 58 (obsolete caliber) of our firearms laws, and I can own it in working order as a curiosity or antique. If I were to purchase the components to make up some rounds of ammunition, I would then need a section 1 firearms certificate to use it. I do have a Martini Henry Mk11 rifle in shootable condition. But the carbine is one that was relegated to DP by the military and deactivated by them as per the regulations set down in 1900. Because it is obsolete caliber, I do not need a deactivation certificate or proof house stamps on it to show that it has been deactivated to current standards. It was only deactivated by the military because it was probably condemned as to dangerous to fire live ammunition through it. It can all get very confusing at times when collecting weapons!
    Author of... 'Belfast Diaries: A Gunner In Northern Ireland'... 'A Tough Nut To Crack: Andersonstown.. Voices From 9 Battery Royal Artillery In Northern Ireland'... 'An Accrington Pal: The Diaries of Pte Jack Smallshaw, September 1914 To March 1919'.

  7. #7
    ?

    Default Re: Martini Henry Mk11 Artillery carbine

    Converted to "DP" ..... (Drill Purpose), as past Military standard use ....
    Quite a few were resleeved to .22 and used as cadet training rifles.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Martini Henry Mk11 Artillery carbine

    Quote by HARRY THE MOLE View Post
    This is where the laws on gun ownership get a bit silly in the UK. I can legally own without a licence a Martini Henry in 577/455 as long as I don't intend to shoot it. The weapon falls under section 58 (obsolete caliber) of our firearms laws, and I can own it in working order as a curiosity or antique. If I were to purchase the components to make up some rounds of ammunition, I would then need a section 1 firearms certificate to use it. I do have a Martini Henry Mk11 rifle in shootable condition. But the carbine is one that was relegated to DP by the military and deactivated by them as per the regulations set down in 1900. Because it is obsolete caliber, I do not need a deactivation certificate or proof house stamps on it to show that it has been deactivated to current standards. It was only deactivated by the military because it was probably condemned as to dangerous to fire live ammunition through it. It can all get very confusing at times when collecting weapons!
    I think you've done really well with the deal, it looks like a nice conversation piece. Are you going to wall mount it? I've got one of the .303 AC Mk2 carbines, its got a real balance to it and the short action means its light and comes up to the aim so easily.

    Don't quote me on this because it may all have changed but I think you can own the components of the ammunition, its only when that bullet head is seated in the case that it becomes a live round. When I used to reload my 22-250 I had enough parts to make probably a thousand rounds but I could only hold 200 complete rounds at one go. When I explained to the FLO that everything was purchased in bulk, he explained to me that it was OK as long as I didn't hold more than the 200 assembled rounds as shown on my cert. That is some time ago now so it may well have changed.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Martini Henry Mk11 Artillery carbine

    I've no idea what I will do with it yet. Th extractor is missing, but as the breech is well and truly sealed there seems little point in replacing the missing part. The underside of the barrel is heavily pitted. The top side isn't too bad at all - it looks as though it has been re-worked, but there is some pitting showing along the edge where the barrel rests in the woodwork. The rear sight is also fairly pitted. Woodwork is in excellent condition though. The blueing is certainly a very old re-finish. I have seen worst examples than this being touted at arms fairs for around the 350 mark - and they are usually the ones that have been converted to .303. I have not seen that many being offered in the 577/450. I do have the components to make up ammunition - although not the primers or powder, so I am not breaking any law!

    As for mounting the carbine on the wall, that is a definite no-no! I have the small bedroom as my 'office' with all my toys in it. There are framed sets of medals on the wall - and a 19th century Zulu shield. I also have a Japanese prayer flag on there and some pctures of me when I was in Ireland. I have already seen the warning signs from my wife that I have gone far enough. At one time this room was home to an 1915 dated Mg08 with mount and optical sight, a light pattern Vickers gun from early 1917, and many WW1 rifles and associated items from WW1. They all had to go because I had a serious illness and I wasn't sure that I would be around much longer to enjoy them. I got rid of everything, and then got better.
    Author of... 'Belfast Diaries: A Gunner In Northern Ireland'... 'A Tough Nut To Crack: Andersonstown.. Voices From 9 Battery Royal Artillery In Northern Ireland'... 'An Accrington Pal: The Diaries of Pte Jack Smallshaw, September 1914 To March 1919'.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Martini Henry Mk11 Artillery carbine

    Two more Martini Henry Carbines: Cavalry and Artillery Mk.I with Pat. 1879 Artillery Bayonet.

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