Shooters Forum banner
1 - 7 of 7 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm currently stationed in Afghanistan and was fortunate enough to acquire two guns right off of the battlefield.

1. A Lee Enfield- 1889 I'm being told
2. A Chassepot, Fusil modèle 1866

Both are in "OK" Condition
I WAS able to get the rifles sent back to the states legally.

I have no intention on selling the rifles, but I guess my question is should I clean them up ? or leave them as is ? Both weapons actions are solid although I have no intentions of firing them.

I do not have any pictures of them as of yet but any kind of feedback on the matter would be great. These are my first antique guns and I don't wanna do them any harm.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,262 Posts
A thorough cleaning won't hurt -- but gently, gently. You want to remove dirt, grime, old grease, etc. Remove all active rust as completely as possible, but be careful not to remove any remaining finish or patina. Sometimes, the best you can do is deactivate the live rust. If you go to the point of stripping/sanding -- then, you are doing harm. And when you are done, a thorough oiling will keep them in one piece for a long time.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
1,667 Posts
tyler50/50,

Welcome to the Forum; I see this is your first post.

I suggest you clean both bores with hot, soapy water, patches, and brushes followed by dry patches and then oil, or better yet, apply Mil Spec Rifle Grease. I would wipe the exterior metal with CLP or gun grease to preserve them. If ancient corrosive ammo was fired in your rifles, the salts need to be removed and the bores preserved. I would not sand the stocks as you will probably remove any inspector's marks, unit designations, etc., which detracts from collector guns. If the stocks are dry, a few drops of boiled linseed oil rubbed into the stocks will preserve them.

Hope this helps. Again, welcome to this site and thank you for your service.

Webley
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks guys

I really appreciate the help guys. I wanted to do the cleaning myself unless it was going to be do difficult or ruin the guns. But it seems like I'll be able to manage. I haven't looked too much but I noticed that the Chassepot came with a bayonet. Are these difficult to find? are there replicas and if I do find an original, were they issued in tandem with matching serials?
 

·
Piney Woods Moderator
Joined
·
6,223 Posts
Welcome to the forum and thank you for your Service to our country. A good cleaning will help the value as long as you don't do any damage.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
96 Posts
You're lucky to have gotten them back. I was there less than a year ago and the only firearms that customs would approve were muzzle loaders even though the regulation states than firearms made before 1898 (I think) were allowed. I also remember reading something about them needing to be chambered in an obsolete round as well. I guess CENTCOM came to their senses which is surprising considering the current gun control craze. But to answer your question I would give them a thorough cleaning and oil them up but I wouldn't try and repair/undo any of the battlefield damage or alterations/decoration that the Afghans are known for. In my opinion it would take away from the history of the guns and besides neither one is very valuable even in great condition.
 
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
Top