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Graham

Sten Mk 2

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Can anyone help me identify the date (or thereabout) of my Mk2 Sten. Markings are 'E&C (Elkington & Co.) S245 . Coincidentally it is marked with an arrow inside a 'U' which I understand shows an Union of South Africa issue just like my 1917 SMLE MkIII*.

Any thoughts please?

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Elkington and Co were a Birmingham company specialising in electro plating, into the 1960s, so I can only assume that they were sub-contractors to the ROF, manufacturing some of the two million Mk2s produced. I suppose you could read the serial as 'Sten Mk2 1945', a rough and ready interpretation, I know, but sometimes the simpler ways of looking at wartime serial numbers are the most accurate!

The issue stamps are as you say, and would have been added after manufacture. Just out of interest, twenty two or so different companies manufactured the British No11 and 36 grenades, (Mills Bombs), such was the need at the time, and I wouldn't be surprised to learn that the Sten went along the same lines. :-D

Just being curious, but has your SMLE got the magazine cut off???

Edited by Tootles

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Might have been a rebuild, though so many were turned out, there are a lot of difrences. My 1903 to 1907 ish No2 (The no1 in .22, not a PH conversion) has both cut out and volley sight, but a Long Lee bolt.

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LSA production continued to make the MkIII rather than the MkIII*, possibly as they were quite a small producer. Also some Enfield and BSA actions still had the slot for the cut off but the cut off wasn't installed. Some time post WW1, some of these rifles were converted to MkIII and the * barred out.

 

As for the STEN Mk2, the serial number can help identify production time frame and the assembler, I'd wager it has a F? ???? serial number in which case it will be a ROF Fazakerly assembled gun. Another way of determining a very rough time frame is if it uses 2BA screws to retain the trigger mech dust cover or if it uses the dimpled type cover. I posted the exact date the change happened previously and I can't remember it now, some time in late 1942 I think it was. S245 is a manufacturers code but for who I can't remember, its not Elkington as that is M78 (M being midlands, S South and N north).

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S245 = Oxo Ltd., Oxo Factory, Waterden Road, London E15

 

Suppliers of triggers, pins, springs, bayonet caps and magazine components for Stens.

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Just out of intrest, was there any company who could press or machine metal that didn't make parts for the STEN?

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Just being curious, but has your SMLE got the magazine cut off???

 

My SMLE Mk III* 1917 doesn't have a magazine cut off nor any slot for it which I understand was on the MKIII but omitted on the Mk III* but it does have 'windage adjustment' on the backsight so is a bit of a hybrid between MkIII and MKIII*. I took advice from this forum when I wanted to buy one few years back and followed the advice and finished up with a really nice SMLE with lots of 'patina', knocks, a couple of strange threaded holes in the woodwork which may have housed an extra sight (?), also marked with the Union of South Africa mark which is of interest to me because I visit Deville Wood every year as part of my annual study of the Somme area near it.

Thank you all for the information about my sten - very interesting.

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Where abouts are the 'extra' holes? If they are about half way up the left side of the woodwork that would be where the fronr volley sight fitted.

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Where abouts are the 'extra' holes? If they are about half way up the left side of the woodwork that would be where the fronr volley sight fitted.

 

No they are nearer the butt. On the wood work next to the safety lever there is a long groove just below which is a shallow 10mm dia hollow with a deeper centre. On the butt side of the band is a deeper hole with a course screw thread cut into it. Of course a picture would save all this. I will work out how to post a picture and get back to you. All the best.

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Just being curious, but has your SMLE got the magazine cut off???

 

My SMLE Mk III* 1917 doesn't have a magazine cut off nor any slot for it which I understand was on the MKIII but omitted on the Mk III* but it does have 'windage adjustment' on the backsight so is a bit of a hybrid between MkIII and MKIII*. I took advice from this forum when I wanted to buy one few years back and followed the advice and finished up with a really nice SMLE with lots of 'patina', knocks, a couple of strange threaded holes in the woodwork which may have housed an extra sight (?), also marked with the Union of South Africa mark which is of interest to me because I visit Deville Wood every year as part of my annual study of the Somme area near it.

Thank you all for the information about my sten - very interesting.

 

Being a Union of South Africa rifle theres a good chance that the barrel and therefor rear sight are from another rifle. Have a look on the underside of the sight and see if there is a serial number. If there is, this would have matched the action, as would the barrel to the action and sight.

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The rear slot sounds like the groove for a volley sight. I'll post my picture (Later) if you post yours?:-D

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The rear slot sounds like the groove for a volley sight. I'll post my picture (Later) if you post yours?:-D

 

Good point - I will check the numbers. Would this sight be a Parker-Hale type. The 'threaded' hole seems more recent and may have been done to fix a hook for hanging on a wall?

Thanks again.

SMLE holes.jpg

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The srew under the sight, is there one in front of it on the reciver?

 

The only screw holes are the ones shown in the photo. I haven't taken the rifle apart so not sure if there are any screw holes under the receiver.

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It looks like its had a match sight fitted, and quite crudely too.

 

If you strip it down, you must remove the forstock before you remove the butt as the but screw has a square end and this fits into the back of the forstock. If you try and fit or remove the bolt with the forstock fitted, the square end acts like a cam and will split the forstock.

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It looks like its had a match sight fitted, and quite crudely too.

 

If you strip it down, you must remove the forstock before you remove the butt as the but screw has a square end and this fits into the back of the forstock. If you try and fit or remove the bolt with the forstock fitted, the square end acts like a cam and will split the forstock.

 

Thank you for the advice - I will be careful.

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