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PostPosted: Fri Jan 01, 2010 14:18 pm 
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Real Name: Mark
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Hi,

Purchased yesterday as a late Christmas present to myself, a mint and matching numbered Australian Bren gun made at SAF Lithgow in 1943. I attach some pictures.

Notes:
- It is an MkI(m) 'Upgraded' model Australian Bren - an official hybrid of MkI and MkII parts. Unlike the Canadians, the Australians did not change over to production of the MkII Bren and like RSAF Enfield continued to produce the MkI 'modified' (i.e. simplified) receiver and MkI butt group. However, unlike Enfield from circa 1943 onwards they changed over to production of the Canadian pattern MkII barrel and their own type of Mk2 bipod. The Australian Mk2 bipod features the top section of the original MkI bipod, but non-extendable legs and bipod feet similar to those fitted to the British type Mk2 bipod.
- It is marked as having undergone 'FTR' ('Factory Thorough Repair' = refurbishment to new condition) in December 1950 and judging by the condition it was then never reissued prior to disposal.
- It is almost 'factory spec' and mostly made of Australian parts. As is commonly the case, it acquired a few Inglis and Enfield marked parts when it was FTR'd. The most noticeable is the Inglis made machined MkI carrying handle sleeve - when originally manufactured it would probably have been fitted with the simplified welded MkII carrying handle sleeve.
- When FTR'd it was fitted with a new postwar dated butt and pistol grip. I have also added a postwar dated Australian MkI carrying handle assembly to replace a Canadian MkII assembly it had been fitted with.
- Interestingly it came with a 'matching' deactivated magazine (internals removed and feed lips cut away) complete with a Proof House deactivaton mark. An odd thing to do given the legality and ubiquity of live Bren magazines in the mainland UK - perhaps something to do with the restrictions on live magazines in Northern Ireland?

All comments welcomed.

Mark


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PostPosted: Mon Jan 04, 2010 18:59 pm 
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Very nice mate, glad you went for it. These upgraded models are nice in their own right. Have you got a serial number for me? I'm guesing it is a Ryton deac, probably in 1995/6. The magazine lips removed is somthing they used to do as part of a 'Spec B' post 1995 deac. This appears have to been dropped now the rules have been 'Firmed up'.

Cheers, Chris.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 20:19 pm 
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m3bobby wrote:
Very nice mate, glad you went for it. These upgraded models are nice in their own right. Have you got a serial number for me? I'm guesing it is a Ryton deac, probably in 1995/6. The magazine lips removed is somthing they used to do as part of a 'Spec B' post 1995 deac. This appears have to been dropped now the rules have been 'Firmed up'.

Cheers, Chris.


Thanks. As I've got an Enfield MkI and an Inglis MkII, I thought a Lithgow MkI(m) was a logical gap to fill. I also like the fact that it's an 'factory spec' hybrid of MkI and MkII parts rather than a 'bitsa'.

I'm not sure what to go for next: expensive exotica like MkIII's and L4's are sadly out of my budget. Perhaps a Daimler/Monotype MkII? Assuming I can find one with the correct spec barrel, bipod and butt slide of course.

The serial number is B3506 and I've posted it on the list here and on the Bren forum.

I don't have the deact certificate to hand, but it was done in 1997. The 1945 Lithgow I used to own came with a deactivated magazine in the transit chest and it came from Ryton in 1998 or 1999. Am I right in thinking they had a large amount of Lithgow Brens in the late 1990's?

Cheers,
Mark

_________________
Safe in the womb
Of an everlasting night
You find the darkness can
Give the brightest light.
Safe in your place deep in the earth
That's when they'll know what you were really worth.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 20:51 pm 
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peregrinvs wrote:
m3bobby wrote:
Very nice mate, glad you went for it. These upgraded models are nice in their own right. Have you got a serial number for me? I'm guesing it is a Ryton deac, probably in 1995/6. The magazine lips removed is somthing they used to do as part of a 'Spec B' post 1995 deac. This appears have to been dropped now the rules have been 'Firmed up'.

Cheers, Chris.


Thanks. As I've got an Enfield MkI and an Inglis MkII, I thought a Lithgow MkI(m) was a logical gap to fill. I also like the fact that it's an 'factory spec' hybrid of MkI and MkII parts rather than a 'bitsa'.

I'm not sure what to go for next: expensive exotica like MkIII's and L4's are sadly out of my budget. Perhaps a Daimler/Monotype MkII? Assuming I can find one with the correct spec barrel, bipod and butt slide of course.

The serial number is B3506 and I've posted it on the list here and on the Bren forum.

I don't have the deact certificate to hand, but it was done in 1997. The 1945 Lithgow I used to own came with a deactivated magazine in the transit chest and it came from Ryton in 1998 or 1999. Am I right in thinking they had a large amount of Lithgow Brens in the late 1990's?

Cheers,
Mark


Hi Mark, thats a late 1943 gun, probably about November. Rytons imported most of the Lithgow Refurbed guns. If you see a refurbed gun in a box with a spare mag with the lips cut off, you can be 99% sure its one from Rytons.

Cheers, Chris.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 05, 2010 22:13 pm 
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Thanks - interesting. How do you know it's circa November?

Cheers,
Mark

_________________
Safe in the womb
Of an everlasting night
You find the darkness can
Give the brightest light.
Safe in your place deep in the earth
That's when they'll know what you were really worth.


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