HISTORY: The British Pattern 14 Rifle with C&R Arsenal

C&Rsenal is at it again, continuing their coverage of World War I weapons turning their attention to the British Pattern 14 rifle. With over 1.2 million built, the rifles served the Empire admirably and would later go on to serve as the inspiration for the US M1917 Enfield rifle, which was the primary weapon of the US infantry in the war.

The weapon was ultimately the result of the British “Small Arms Committee” that “scoured the world for innovation”. Like other powers of the day, the British Empire ran into the ugly end of the truly revolutionary Mauser rifles, which beat out the British rifles in terms of weight, range, rate of fire, and other critical metrics.

Despite being more accurate than the Lee-Enfield rifle, it was not widely deployed due to a combination of manufacturing constraints and preference by infantry for the higher magazine capacity of the Lee-Enfield. With its weight (it was heavy), rapid fire mechanism, and accuracy, the rifle was primarily used by sharp-shooters and snipers all the way through World War II before it was pronounced obsolete in 1947. In fact, a “fine adjustment” iron sight set was developed for the rifle and later a telescopic sight.

Interesting bit of history: the Pattern 14 rifle was primarily manufactured in the United States. US companies to make the rifle included Winchester, Remington, and Eddystone.

Nathan S

One of TFB’s resident Jarheads, Nathan now works within the firearms industry. A consecutive Marine rifle and pistol expert, he enjoys local 3-gun, NFA, gunsmithing, MSR’s, & high-speed gear. Nathan has traveled to over 30 countries working with US DoD & foreign MoDs.

The above post is my opinion and does not reflect the views of any company or organization.


  • PK

    Marvelous presentation, as usual!

    Othais always entertains, even if he’s covering subjects I’m already familiar with, just by giving full context, backstory, development history, and so on. He is to more common historic firearms what Ian (from Forgotten Weapons) is to obscure designs.

  • Tyler McCommon

    It’s a great firearm but didn’t fit well with the high rate of fire doctrine of the English. Regardless it’s only a matter of time before its added to my collection of English firearms.

  • l2a3

    The caliber if .303 British should be 7.7x56mm not 7.2x60mm.

  • Joseph Smith

    Amazing video!

    Makes me very happy to have a Win M1917 chambered for freedom (.30-06).