Gun of the Month

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Woftam
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Gun of the Month

Postby Woftam » Fri Jan 02, 2009 7:14 pm

Apologies for being a little late, was going to do this New Years Day but spent the morning with a hangover and the afternoon with the dreaded gastro.

Anyway this months subject is a Savage No4 MkI. Got this one quite a few years back, all original except the magazine was a very well done 5 round conversion. Traded off a spare pommy (used in deference to those who don't like the "brit" appellation) No4 mag for a proper Savage one.

As with most Savage No4's in aussie it is in very good condition. A lot of the Savage No4's seen here are NZ marked as they received quite a few during WW2. Australia, so the story goes never officially used the No4 and it was never issued to our armed forces. Having said that "A Bastard of a place" by Peter Brune has a cover shot of our troops in NG and one of them is carrying what is quite clearly a No4. There exist also many photo's of the VDC using No4's. So far, to the best of my knowledge, no No4 has surfaced with Australian markings.

Savage manufactured both the No4 MkI and the No4 MkI*, a MkI with modifications to simplify and speed up manufacture. This particular rifle was manufactured in 1942 and is one of the first 117,000 produced. It wears the ubiquitous "U.S. PROPERTY" stamp.





Skennerton puts the changeover from MkI to MkI* between 7C8000 and 12C000, however other research on the net places it between 13C2752 and 13C2845. Savage produced over 1,000,000 No4's although the exact number is in dispute.







This rifle shows some of the early features that were later discontinued or modified to speed up production as well as some of the modifications.

It has the early rounded cocking piece, the original style circular head on the safety catch and the bolthead release catch as opposed to the slot in the bolthead guide.







The rear sight is a pommy MkI replacement, Savage did make the MkI but they are rare and expensive. From memory I think the battle sight aperture was noticably smaller in diameter on the Savage model.



The wood is cut low around the area where the magazine cut-off would have been, a carry over from the trials rifles. The rear handguard has the longitudinal grooving, although this feature does not necessarily indicate early production.





Bore is the very common two groove, although six groove rifling was used early in production. Interestingly some barrels with a one in 10.5 inch twist were manufacture as opposed to the standard 1 in 10.





The safety catch spring is the later stamped pattern not the earlier milled item (see photo of serial number).

The foresight protector is also the later fabricated item not the original milled one. The foresight itself is also the later MkI* pattern with the screw for adjustment.





The magazine, although a Savage manufactured item, is I think later production. Note the folding of the bottom of the magazine as opposed to a standard pommy No4 magazine. Also the Savage magazine has two bumps below the spine. Unfortunately there appears to be little information available on the reason for these or the difference in manufacture.





Lastly there is the bayonet. Standard MkII, produced by Savage.





This rifle appeals to me for a couple of reasons. The woodwork is in very good condition and I find it very attractive. The Lend Lease connection I think is an interesting chapter in international co-operation.

Lastly my thanks to the feral princesses for supplying the front rest and rear bag to dear old dad for Christmas - beats the hell out of a lump of 4x4 and a couple of sown up jeans legs filled with sand. :bigsmile:
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Very good post

Postby Niner » Fri Jan 02, 2009 7:25 pm

Another excellent post. Thanks for taking the time to do it and give us some education we wouldn't otherwise have.

Got me looking at my 1943 Savage. Took a few quick snaps to show some of the differences from yours.
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safety.jpg
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Postby DuncaninFrance » Sat Jan 03, 2009 3:58 am

Thanks G. I don't mind Pommy - Pommy (also Pommie)

n noun (plural Pommies) Australian/New Zealand informal, often derogatory a British person.

ORIGIN

early 20th cent.: of unknown origin; said by some to be short for pomegranate, as a near rhyme to immigrant.

That's an interesting post as usual AND you got lucky at Christmas :razz:
Last edited by DuncaninFrance on Sat Jan 03, 2009 3:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby dromia » Sat Jan 03, 2009 5:13 am

Nice Savage.

Can't remember if you saw mine or not Graeme. Its a 7c with the six groove barrel and the 300/600yrd flip sights.
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Postby oldironsights » Sun Jan 04, 2009 1:00 pm

Outstanding post, Wolftam!

Great rifle, too!
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Postby 24626151 » Mon Jan 05, 2009 4:09 am

Slightly OT but I was told that Pommy comes from Prisoner of His/Her Majesty!
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Postby Woftam » Tue Jan 06, 2009 2:16 am

Nice rifle Niner. Interesting mix of parts.

Adam you must have kept the Savage in the closet, don't recall seeing it.

Stuck a post in the Breeze forum regarding terms of endearment for foreigners, rather than clutter up this thread.
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Postby joseyclosey » Tue Jan 06, 2009 12:35 pm

Another post up to your usual high standard Graeme, thanks :D

I used to have a Savage a few years back but im afraid i dont recall any details on it. This was before i started photographing and recording my rifles, back then i did not collect as such as i was more inclined to chop and change rifles/handguns.

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Postby dromia » Thu Jan 15, 2009 2:02 pm

24626151 wrote:Slightly OT but I was told that Pommy comes from Prisoner of His/Her Majesty!


I believe that it was actually Prisoner of Milbank. Millbank Penitentiary was on the Thames just upstream from parliament and ships for Australia with the sentenced convicts of PoMs sailed from there.

Tate Britain is now on the site and it was opened in 1897 after the penitentiary was demolished in 1892.

The Tate was funded by the wealth from the sugar trade, its founder Sir Henry Tates company eventually became Tate and Lyle.

I seem to recall that the current Ozzy sobriquet for the FEB is "Pommy Bastard", obviously a derivative of the original PoM. :cool:
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