The Lee-Enfield is a British military-surplus rifle chambered in .303 calibre; it was issued to British troops all over the globe during World War I and World War II. The vast majority of these surplus rifles are in shootable condition, but the stocks are often in terrible shape. A large number of aftermarket stocks are available, but people with the woodworking talent sometimes make their own.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Scroll saw
- Band saw
- Wood chisels
- Belt or spindle sander
Investigate timber yards and supply companies to select the wood. The quality selected depends on the goal of the project. Restoring an Enfield to a shootable condition is different from a complete restoration. A complete restoration results in a nice stock, but the receiver and barrel are often refinished and restored to factory conditions or better. Gunstock blanks are readily available.
Trace a pattern in the blank using the old stock as a template. Make the rough cuts using the jig or band saw. Some blanks are sold with most of the rough cuts and finishing completed.
Route the receiver slot. Inlet the spaces for the receiver, barrel, trigger and magazine assemblies with a router. Use the old stock as a template. Other inlets -- holding a variety of metal parts -- must be cut in the stock. Use the wood chisels to carefully fit the pieces together. Don't cut away too much wood. A tight fit between wood and metal is desired.
Smooth the rough surfaces of the stock with the sanders and chisels. Start with a heavier grit sandpaper. Change to a finer grit after each pass, until the stock is perfectly smooth. Ensure that the receiver assembly fits tightly in the new stock.
Stain the stock after it has been cut and sanded. Apply several coats, and finish it with a polyurethane sealant.