Results 1 to 11 of 11
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    1,040

    Default Smith and Wesson "Not English Make"

    While not concerning a British made revolver, it seems as if this would be a good site to get some information on a S&W Model 1917 with a "Not English Make" stamp on it. It also has proof marks on the cylinder and a Birmingham (commercial?) proof mark on the frame end of the barrel. I have always fancied that this revolver might have been some sort of emergency or lend-lease piece sent over in the early days of WW2. Or am I dreaming. On the other hand, as it is in 45ACP (or 45 Auto-rim) I can't imagine it having been a popular item in the UK for any other reason. Opinions?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    Under the big sky, in the shadow of the Sweetgrass Hills
    Posts
    3,080

    Default

    Does this revolover have an Afghan back ground?

    That not English Make is stamp is common on Guns from Muscat-Omen region as well as Afghan.

    Can you show us pictures?
    Douglas

    "And don't forget. That isn't your Martini you have. It belonged to others before you and will belong to others after you are gone. Look after it, and pass it on with pride. It deserves it." Malcolm Cobb, The Martini Henry Note-book
    *********
    To find things Martini go to: WWW.MartiniHenry.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    UK, Ont Canada, OR USA & Tokyo Japan
    Posts
    1,448

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by DoubleD View Post
    Does this revolover have an Afghan back ground?

    That not English Make is stamp is common on Guns from Muscat-Omen region as well as Afghan.

    Can you show us pictures?
    On the other hand, I have five post-war, but pre-1960, German-made .22 rifles that are also stamped 'Not English Make' in a zig-zag pattern cartouche.

    It's pretty common to see this on any firearm - of either civilian or military surplus origin - that originated outside the UK and sold, after the compulsory London or Birmingham proofing, between 1945 and 1960 or so.

    tac

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    1,040

    Default Not English make

    No Afghan background. This is a conventional S&W 1917 U.S.Army revolver of the type carried in WW1 and after. Like all of the others I have seen (Colt made a slightly different version, also a 1917), it is marked US Property on the bottom of the barrel. I have had it for 20 years. It is in all respects a common gun, though they get a lot for them these days. I will take some pictures of the stamping and reply with them tomorrow.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    England
    Posts
    824

    Default

    This was a mandatory requirement on imported guns at one time.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    Nofolk.
    Posts
    368

    Default Me Too

    My P14 (Remington) has Not English Make stamped on the left side of the receiver ring. It's so small I had to get a magnifying glass to even begin guessing what it said!
    The difference between an American and an Englishman. One thinks 100 miles is a long way, the other that 100 years is a long time.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    Michigan Mini-Pattern Room
    Posts
    1,945

    Default

    "The Standard Directory of Proof Marks" by Wirnsberger, translated by Steindler is an excellent source for the history/development of various countrie's proof marks. Jolex, 1975 and still in print last I looked. If you are going to get serious about reading proof marks, this is a good book to have.

    The "Not English make" markings were part of the proof system placed by the British proof houses on arms entering Britain that did not have proofs acceptable to the proof house and surplus British military/US lend lease to Britain leaving service and going into the trade. The particular mark was introduced with the proof laws of 1925 and discontinued with proof laws of 1954.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    Idaho Falls, Idaho
    Posts
    516

    Default

    Pretty sure Britain was given a number of M1917 revolvers in early WWII.
    Certainly "Not English Make" is to be found on my .455 Brit WWI contract Colt New Service and both .455 S&Ws (Triple Lock and Mk II). So I'd guess the Lend Lease might have been so stamped.
    Used to have a Victory revolver but don't any more so can't check it. I think it was so marked but can't swear to it.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    England
    Posts
    824

    Default

    We purchased a number of both models in 1940. A friend recalls having one stationed in Tobago in the 1950s.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Location
    Under the big sky, in the shadow of the Sweetgrass Hills
    Posts
    3,080

    Default

    The subject of Not english Make has come up numerous time in relation to Middle east source firearms. This is the first time I have ever seen a informed discussion of it's origination, thanks gents.
    Douglas

    "And don't forget. That isn't your Martini you have. It belonged to others before you and will belong to others after you are gone. Look after it, and pass it on with pride. It deserves it." Malcolm Cobb, The Martini Henry Note-book
    *********
    To find things Martini go to: WWW.MartiniHenry.com

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
    Posts
    14,049

    Default

    Couple of possibilities, 1, the gun was originaly .455 someone shaved the cylinder. or replaced it.
    If WW1 vintage one heck of a lot of Smiths and colts in .455 were purchased by the British government.

    WW2? anything that would shoot! H&R's,Iver Johnsons,
    Colt single action Army models and just about every other model, and of Course Smith & Wessons

    And i have one of those ingersoll "dollar pocket watches" with "NotEnglish make" on th dial

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •