Very tight - clean - sharp Jungle Carbine. The Ishapore's, unlike the Enfield's on which they were based, were designed from the ground up to chamber the .308 round - and the way things are going, these old magazine fed bolt action rifles may be he closest we can own to an assault weapon!
This incredible example is from my personal collection - bore is clean and bright, all metal in excellent condition - no pitting - furniture in excellent condition - shoots great! There is a lot of murky history on these guns - It is built off the 21A platform and marked as such - here's an interesting article on this weapon:
The Ishapore 2A1: A Budget Battle Rifle, by JIR
For budget preppers, I think the Enfield bolt action rifle is an excellent choice for a main battle rifle. Most of them are British weapons chambered for .303, which is an obsolete caliber. I don't recommend a .303 weapon, but it would be perfectly adequate if you could get ammunition. A better choice is the Ishapore 2A1 rifle. It's a redesigned Lee Enfield SMLE Mk III (one of the best rifles ever issued to an army) but chambered for 7.62x51 (7.62 NATO) and has a 10 or 12 round magazine. (The later production 2A1s have a 12 round magazine. Mine both do). This is a no-nonsense weapon in competent hands and fit for serious business.
A little known feature of the Enfield SMLE family of weapons is the speed sight, which also makes a pretty good night sight. These rifles have a U shaped post or frame around both the rear and front sights. If you paint these posts with white or luminous paint, you can quickly index the rifle in almost complete darkness. The posts are large and easy to see. It works as well as most night sights and it's free.
Other than painting the night posts to increase visibility, I don't suggest modifying this rifle in any way. It's a fine weapon just like it is. One of it's few faults is that mounting a scope is not very easy or neat because it was not designed for that. Most scopes also interfere with the capability to feed from clips. If you want to modify it much and "trick it out", you will probably be happier with a modern rifle. Right out of the box, the SMLE is pretty nice, but it's not easy to improve.
The 2A1 is fairly heavy at roughly 10 pounds loaded with a sling, and it kicks slightly harder than a .303 SMLE (or a M1A for that matter), but it feels and shoots almost the same as the SMLE. Here is why I love it:
It fires 7.62 NATO rounds. They are standardized and easy to get. Because it has a gentle bolt action, It will also shoot .308 civilian ammunition with no danger of a slam-fire. Some .308 rounds are reportedly a little hot for a 7.62 NATO rifle, but the tolerances of the Ishapores are pretty generous. I have never heard of an actual case of one being damaged in any way by firing .308 rounds. I routinely fire .308 factory loads and reload the brass. I have never noted any signs of too much pressure or deformed brass from the chamber dimensions.
All SMLE load from stripper clips. This is a very powerful feature that was once considered mandatory for a military rifle, but it's mostly a forgotten loading method these days. The original SMLE uses 5 round charger clips, but you can get 10 round (M-14) clips for the nato rounds and they fit the Ishapore perfectly. NcStar .308 stripper clips are available on Amazon, cost 13 dollars for 20 clips and work well in the Ishapore. Once you get used to using clips, the 2A1 reloads very fast and the sustained rate of fire using clips and the Enfield action is excellent. While not as fast as an automatic, it is still pretty good. With practice an average shooter can maintain 20 rounds per minute of accurate fire until the rifle catches fire from the heat. You can shoot twice that fast
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I am a private collector with the highest ebay rating - since 1998. I occasionally make interesting items from my own collection available.