View Full Version : Enfield defarb help for a newbie
Pipe Creek Line
04-22-2012, 09:32 PM
I apologize if this has been covered already. I searched and found bits and pieces of what I am looking for. I am new to the hobby and recently bought a used euroarms enfield. I know that a basic defarb includes removing the modern markings. My question is, what else does a defarb include and how detailed does it get? Also, I read that Mr. Watts does excellent defarb work on enfields, how can he be contacted for information?
Thanks everyone for your time.
04-22-2012, 11:26 PM
Contact Blockade Runner for Todd's services. Also, visit www.authentic-campaigner.com for "massive Todd Watts defarb Enfield thread" (it's literally called that or something close to it).
04-23-2012, 08:07 AM
Here it is...
The Queen-Mother of All Enfield Defarb Threads (http://www.authentic-campaigner.com/forum/showthread.php?17478-Massive-Todd-Watts-Enfield-Defarb!!!&highlight=watts+enfield)
04-23-2012, 09:52 AM
If you'd like to try it yourself ... or just get an idea of what all can be involved (the costs in this article are now dated, and some folks also reshape the stock as well).
Pipe Creek Line
04-23-2012, 12:15 PM
Thanks so much everyone, I will start looking into it all. I am sure that more questions will come up while I read through this. Are there any other people that do quality work? From what it seems Mr. Watts is the unrivaled top dog when it comes to enfields.
Craig L Barry
04-24-2012, 11:38 AM
The baseline research in Walden's monograph is indispensible. Worth reading by any and all students
of the Enfield. Plus ca change plus c'est le meme chose, as the French say. The more things
change, the more they are the same. Unless you are quite handy, you are better off having an expert
handle the work. Barrel re-bluing is tricky because it is a build up process, you need to have period correct
stamps made, etc. It could well cost you more to do it yourself.
It is esssential to reshape the stock, for what it's worth. A repro Enfield is not really "de-farbed" without
that important step, and then refinishing with BLO (boiled linseed oil). Todd Watts does that, too. The only
downside is the time it can take him to do the job.
04-24-2012, 01:55 PM
"De-farb' is almost a meaningless word or term as it has so many forms and variations.
And, 'defarbing' is a partial journey toward an unreachable destination, not neccessarily just arriving at an event.
Pipe Creek Line
04-24-2012, 06:03 PM
Hey guys, not sure why my previous reply did not go through. Must still be getting approved. Thanks so much for the resources though. Mr. Walden, that is a great article and very informative. I did not realize all of those different details. How much higher are the prices now compared to what they were when this article was published?
I certainly do not trust myself to do this work though, and would need to send it to a professional. That being said and the fact that I am new to the hobby and only own this particular gun to use, how much will I be looked down on for using this gun with the modern markings still present?
Craig L Barry
04-25-2012, 09:54 AM
Well, strictly speaking--yes that is the case. A reproduction can be improved cosmetically
but in the case of the Civil War Enfield, a handmade (except LACo) weapon is never going to be quite
the same as the modern machine-made reproduction of a later type.
05-07-2012, 11:37 AM
I haven't much to add, since the two people I think know the most about the Enfield and its defarbing and who hang out here (Curt and Craig) have already chimed in. But I will speak out as a consumer of defarbing, which may be useful for others here who are contemplating improving the accuracy of their Enfield repros.
1. The cost: You can probably add 100% to the cost of an out-of-the-box ArmiSport Enfield if you take it all the way. My personal recommendation is to let someone who knows what they're doing handle it. As Craig has mentioned, you need the right stamps, tools, etc.
2.) reblueing: Not the nightmare I expected, and I was able to reblue mine successfully. I had purchased a partially-defarbed Enfield from Lodgewood that left the barrel with the same "painted on" blueing it came with from the factory. If you build a bathing chamber out of PVC pipe, you can do it. Of course, you can save yourself a ton of effort and BS if you have it bright. There is a lot of evidence that CW troops took off the blueing, since America has traditionally had its weapons bright. I will not offer and opinion on that, since the unit you're part of may have had blued weapons. But I don't recall ever seeing event guidelines that said "all Enfields must be properly-blued."
3.) the stock: I didn't reshape mine, that was "a bridge too far" for me, but I did strip off the poly finish it came with and restained it. One small correction to Craig's point about using BLO (boiled linseed oil). The modern version has had the esters boiled out of it, so it will not dry on your stock. Instead it will form a sticky residue. There is a recipe for reconstituting linseed oil to its Civil War, more or less, version that includes spar varnish and Japan dryer IIRC.
Finally, is it worth it? Generally, I would say "yes." I feel better about my Enfield now than if it were OOB. A more or less properly-defarbed Enfield is worth more for resale than one that isn't, which is just a repro in that case. Do you have to go all the way? This hobby is a journey, it depends on where you are on the road.
05-07-2012, 01:14 PM
I highly recommend this book:
The Civil War Musket: A Handbook for Historical Accuracy-Lock, Stock, and Barrel , by Craig Barry.
The P1853 Enfield was manufactured by many different companies. So part of the fun of defarbing an Enfield is deciding what variant you want to reproduce. It is important that you match the lock and hammer engraving (or lack thereof) with the manufacturer, and of course the actual markings on the lock, stock, and barrel will depend on your manufacturer.
Craig's book covers the different manufacturers and markings and more, as well as issues with the current reproduction arms.
Pipe Creek Line
05-07-2012, 08:16 PM
Thanks Steve, looking it up now and adding to my amazon wish list.
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