Surplus Canadian Ranger Lee Enfields to be Sold to the Public

We’ve had some excellent coverage here on TFB of the Canadian Rangers choosing their replacement rifle. If you’re not in the know, it’s one of the few iron-sighted bolt-gun government contracts left on the planet, as the rifles are used inside the arctic circle by our Northern-most “eyes and ears.”

With the new rifles inbound the question arises on what to do with the long suffering Lee Enfields that have been in service with the Rangers since the Second World War.

CF Ranger Lee enfield

The Ottawa Citizen has reported that up to 9,500 rifles will be de-activated and donated to the Canadian Army Cadets, while as many as another 5,000 will be made available to any of the Rangers who want to take their work rifle home. (How often does that happen? An issued firearm being retired and transferred to the personal ownership of its carrier?) Another 50 rifles will be offered to Canadian Forces affiliated museums around the country. The remainder will be made available to the Canadian public through the normal surplussing avenues of Public Services and Procurement Canada.

Hopefully that means individual rifles listed for sale on something like with some photographs and a description of quality for licensed buyers.

It’s hard to say how many rifles will actually come available, as I haven’t seen any information of total stocks. While the Rangers only has an active force of 5,000 members, it seems that the armament stocks must have far exceeded that, with 14,500 being available for the cadets and serving rangers.

Who knows how many we could actually see released, or what sort of quality they’ll be in. The far North is not a friendly place for firearms. There’s a real reason these guys haven’t switched over to a lubrication dependent semi-auto in the past 70 years. For now, we’ll just have to wait and see what becomes available as the new replacement rifles roll out across the country.


Edward O

Edward is a Canadian gun owner and target shooter with a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism. Crawling over mountains with tactical gear is his idea of fun. He blogs at TV-Presspass and tweets @TV_PressPass.


  • VanDiemensLand

    What camo pattern is that?

    • Gus Butts

      They’re Canadians, so CADPAT.

    • Michael

      I think those stocks are finished in the famous Wood pattern.

      • 11b

        Is that Duracoat or….?

        • Hoplopfheil

          At this point they’re probably sporting the classic “bare” finish.

    • Holdfast_II

      Looks like a joint training exercise. The guys in CadPat are Canadian Army – probably Regs but could be Reserves. The folks in red hoodies and random other gear are Canadian Rangers. The Rangers will periodically act as guides for Army units when they’re sent to the far north, teaching the Army guys how to not die in the Arctic, and other useful skills. For some of those Army guys, it’s probably their first time firing something that doesn’t have a full-auto mode.

  • Gus Butts

    They won’t destroy them AND will sell some to the public? That’s a first and is awesome for the people who want SMLEs. Hopefully they’ll be in good condition…

    • CS

      I just hope Americans will have an opportunity to buy a few.

      • Steve_7

        But why would you want one? Heavily worn No 4s aren’t anything to get excited about.

        • john huscio

          If you have a pile of that new wolf .303, it might.

        • Jim C

          Grand dad’s hammer has been through 7 handles and 8 heads, and is still going strong; rifles are much the same way.

    • William Nelson

      Nice news indeed. Crazy question, but are these still .303 or were they re-worked into 7.62 NATO?

      • Gus Butts

        All O.G. .303 rifles. No modifications were done except parts might’ve eventually been replaced with different versions.

        • Jako

          Some of the Ranger’s are running 7.62 conversions. There is a photo usually attached to the articles about the rifle procurement showing that.

    • Chris

      They aren’t “SMLEs” (Rifle No 1 Mk 3) they’re Rifle No 4 Mk 1 or 2

      • Minuteman

        Tomatoes potatoes…. These rifles are commonly known as ‘SMLE series’. In Scrabble my good friend. That is the key phrase. It’s a common word in usage.

    • Steve_7

      It appears that most of them will deactivated, and the Canadian deac spec is very stringent. I assume the idea is to give the cadets something to drill with.

  • Anonymoose

    Wish we could get some surplus M16s around here…

    • Richard

      I agree

      • Minuteman


    • Dr. Longfellow Buchenrad

      Id take an M14 first but Id have no objections to the M16.

      Though CMP is supposed to be getting some well worn out US surplus 1911s soon.

      • Audie Bakerson

        Was. McCain snuck an amendment into the budget sending them to be melted down instead.

        • Bob


          John McCain wants the 1911s to be sent to the scrap pile and only a few sent to Museums.

          • Kurt Akemann

            Provide a link to support that claim, please. Because I can find nothing to support it via Google.

          • Bob
          • Doom

            That is just an amendment that could easily be cut out. Has not passed yet. Ill not be able to nor want to afford the 1911’s they are selling if they really do start out with the lowest grade at 1000$ But the thought of these historic guns getting scrapped disgusts me. McCain is a total scumbag and traitor, anything he did in the military has been buried beneath decades of betraying citizens in the senate.

          • Jim C

            A grand for a worn out gun is a bit ridiculous; I could see $200 for low grade. My Remington Rand that I shot in the Navy, was a VERY well maintained piece of machinery, and would put a group the size of my palm, at 25 meters; I could see those going for premium dollars.

          • Jim C

            Interestingly enough, that’s where I rather thought HE should be, under the TRAITOR exhibit.

        • Dr. Longfellow Buchenrad

          Well that lousy Sacagawea. I am thoroughly betrayed. The man who was supposed to represent 2A rights in the 2008 election eliminated the proposal that his opponent approved.

          • Audie Bakerson

            The Judas didn’t even need 30 pieces of silver to do it.

          • Edeco

            Ah, McCain <3 I don't agree with him about much, but decade after decade he's the gift that keeps giving.

            The prospect of getting 1911's from the CMP was confusing people, making them think the program is harmless or even good, as opposed to simple liquidation into private hands. I got crap on here for questioning it, people were like "but u get a gun, stop whining and being too lazy to join a club or something, it's easy." I'm glad McCain screwed it up.

          • Jim C

            McCain is kept in power by stupid people, the same way Diane Feinstein and Nancy Pelosi are retained. Never discount the power of stupid people in large numbers.

        • albaby2

          Ever think that he may have been pressured by gun manufacturers to have them destroyed? They are profiting from this turmoil and releasing 10,000 1911’s would cut into their profits. What we should be asking is who pushed McCain to insert the amendment. Maybe look at his donors.

          • Audie Bakerson

            I’m pretty sure McCain doesn’t need any help being a slimeball.

          • Jim C

            Hardly; the market for 1911 parts is alive and well. Gun manufacturers make those too.

        • albaby2

          Have a name or number for the amendment? He may have had to go along with it to get the defense appropration bill passed. 50,000 used 1911’s msy have been a cheap swap to get something included in the budget.

        • Jim C

          That commie bastard!

        • Jim C

          Someone should kick John “Songbird” McCain out of the Republican Party!

          • Audie Bakerson

            He’s well past life expectancy for someone his demographics, even without accounting for his permanent injuries has surely knocked down his lifespan.

            Wonder if Doug Ducey will appoint Ward when McCain finally dies.

      • Jim C

        I saw an announcement about that, but saw none for sale.

    • Dave Acklam

      NFA 1934 means ‘no way in hell’ on that one.

      1911s, Garands, M1 Carbines and maybe M24s if the Army ever fully replaces it with the SR25/AR10….

      Everything else – that is full auto or select fire – will never be surplussed in anything but parts-kit/scrap form… There were M16A1 kits floating around on Sportsman’s Guide a while ago…

      • Anonymoose

        NFA needs to be repealed, or shrunk to just the MG registry part and have that reopened. We should at least be able to get semi-auto M14s through the CMP. There’s not really enough of a difference between an M1A and a select-fire M14 for them to block that, other than the same old tired “it’s too easy to convert to full-auto” and “what if a communist/terrorist/autist/negro gets a hold of one?” crap. They used those stupid lies to take M1s and M14s out of JROTC armories in the ’60s, and nowadays I’m not sure they have any real weapons in JROTC or college-level ROTC armories.

        • Minuteman

          Hear hear! I’d take it a step up: repeal ALL infringements, and no darn registry of nothing. Registering is the first step to confiscating. I am for constitutional carry across the nation. One single national fire arm law: the 2A.

          • Jim C

            You’ve got my vote!
            Minuteman for president in 2020!

          • Minuteman

            Tnx man

        • Jim C

          I was issued a M14 In a JROTC military academy. It was almost as big as I was! They weren’t too concerned then.

        • Dave Acklam

          The law says ‘designed, redesigned or readily convertable’ – which means that (a) since US govt M14s were originally designed to be full auto they are OUT (‘once a machine gun, always a machine gun’)… And that the select-fire block is not enough (unless it is welded in place or something like that)….

          • Anonymoose

            And that’s exactly why the NFA needs to be rolled back.

        • Jim C

          Submit it as a congressional raise, but only if the GCA of 1986 is repealed.

      • Ben Pottinger

        It’s not nfa 1934 that precludes it, it’s 1986. Prior to 86 you could buy any domestic made MG or make your own and file a form 4 (or form 1 if you made it). Just like a suppressor or SBR. 1934 sucks, but 86 was what screwed us.

        • Dave Acklam

          Weapons that were not registered when made, IIRC, cannot *be* registered after being made IIRC – even before 86…

          NFA was bad, 86 was worse…

          • Ben Pottinger

            We could easily argue semantics here because it’s easy to say things in a confusing way because the law itself is silly and confusing. Basically if I say MG it’s safe to assume I mean a legal MG which means it would be approved prior to being made. Before 1986 a manufacturer could make a MG and then transfer it to a police agency on a form 3 (I think) or to a normal person on a form 4. A normal person could take a semi auto gun, file a form 1 to make a MG and when it was approved he could do whatever was needed to turn it into a MG. Prior to 1968 you could also import a MG or silencer. Post 68 you couldn’t import either, and post 86 you couldn’t make or buy one made after may of 86.

            Here’s hoping for a return to sane firearms laws now that progunners have a majority in every branch.

          • Dave Acklam

            Still don’t have a pro-gun President. Regardless of what Trump said on the campaign trail, he’s an anti & always has been (see support for assault weapons ban in his book).

          • Jim C

            I understand his kids are NFA owners, that have swayed his opinion on that, but not verified.

    • John

      You don’t want that, unless you’re using it as a wall hanger. Our old M16’s are awful and should be melted down. Got stuck with an A2 that looked decades old when I was stationed in Korea, and it was the worst rifle I had ever fired. One problem after another, and never cycled properly. M16’s don’t hold up well to the regular use and abuse of Army life.

  • Slim934

    Can we haz?

  • Dickie

    Whats up with the lady and the cat on her shoulders

    • Jimmy

      Looks like her furry hood has ears?

    • Just say’n

      She’s not wearing any eye or ear pro, maybe she wraps that thing around her head to provide such.

  • Bob

    Awesome….. been following this for a while. Glad to see that some Canadians can actually get the products that their tax money bought. Hell, those rifles are from an era when the Canadian Flag was a Red Ensign with the Union Jack in the Canadian Coat of Arms. Form the age of Empire when the sun never set on the holding of the United Kingdom.

    Alas…. those days are long gone and the civility that went with the British Empire is long gone too. No more stable South Africa or Rhodesia. No more British control of the Suez and now instead of a stable Indian subcontinent, we now have two nuclear armed 3rd world nation. One where stoning a woman is fine and the other where taking a dump in the street in socially accepted.

    • RocketScientist

      The sun never set on the British empire because God knew he couldn’y trust them in the dark. I guess “civility” is what you call cultural oppression and colonialism when viewing it through rose colored glasses?

      • Bob

        Meh….. some people left to their own devices are like idiot children and harm not only themselves but others.

        Zimbabwe is the corner stone of freedom and liberty right? Oh wait…. nope. Mugabe has been running the show since 1980 when ZANU-PA took over and went genocide on whites and blacks alike and the breadbasket of Africa that was once the net exporter of food is now a net importer of food.

        When Zimbabwe (then known as Rhodesia) was ruled by a white minority government. Everyone had a better quality of life, healthcare was easier to access, same with education, and employment. But now it is a festering slum of death and AIDS.

        South Africa was much the same way when ruled by the white minority government. Under Apartheid…. everyone else in Africa rushed to live in the RSA because of the better quality of life and economy. Yeah; that means Black Africans rushed to live in a segregated South Africa because it was better than Angola or Zambia.

        Not all cultures are equal. Not all cultures are civilized.

        My Patria (Spanish for Father;and/Homeland) of Cuba is worse off being an independent nation than Puerto Rico is as a colonial possession of the USA.

        Some cultures are weak and horrible and others are powerful and better. You claim the UK was horrible…. they were the ones that spent blood and national treasure in the 1800s to end slavery along the west coast of Africa.

        60% of Jamaicans recently polled agree that they were better off as a UK Possession than a independent nation. Blacks in Zimbabwe, South Africa, Angola, Congo, and Mozambique have all stated numerous times that they were better off under White Minority Government Rule or as Colonial Possessions of European Powers.

        But hey…. I’m just a guy that fled Communism in Cuba and traveled the world while Employed by Uncle Sam and saw the real world.

        • RocketScientist

          I mean, if you’re seriously taking the stance that oppression at the hands of white people is better than democracy/self-determination at the hands of your own (dark) people, because white people > dark people, then I’m not going to even bother replying.

          • Martin M

            It’s not about skin color, it’s about ideas and values. Some cultures came up with and adopted good ones, and others continue to reject them at their own peril.

          • RocketScientist

            “It’s not about skin color”

            “whites and blacks” … “white minority government” … “apartheid” … “black africans” … “slavery” … “blacks” … “White Minority Government Rule”

            For not being about skin color, OP sure mentions skin color/race a whole lot. And it’s not like the usages I call out above are taken out of context either. “When Zimbabwe was ruled by a white minority government. Everyone had a better quality of life … South Africa was much the same way when ruled by the white minority government under Apartheid”

            I mean, the guy literally states that blacks are incapable of running their own country and they need whites to do it for them, whether they want it or not. I don’t know how you can argue that hes not making it about skin color.

          • tiger

            Ok…. Lets stay on topic. Point well made.

          • Grindstone50k

            European countries invade and completely oppress and f*ck up indigenous peoples, then leave in a hurry. Then dipsh!ts like that guy sit back with a smug grin and go “See? It’s inherent to those (dark) people.”

          • dlh0

            and yet, there you are.

        • dlh0

          Don’t throw all of that common sense reality out there at one time It confuses them.

  • Simon Spero

    So when do they get their SLRs?

  • TheNotoriousIUD

    Im sure kitty is real happy to go to the gun range.

    • J. gM

      How do you call a deaf cat ?

      Scream KITTY in its ears.

  • alex waits

    For the brothers and sisters in the north; what role does justin trudeau have in the administration of the rangers and their gear? This seems like a perfect opportunity for him to show how “progressive” he is by destroying these guns in the name of “peace”

    • kgallerno

      Actually Justin Turd-eau would have to change the law or make a exemption to allow these firearms to make it into civilian hands. If he wanted to be “progressive” as you said, all he would have to do is nothing. As written now all surplus government firearms are destined for the smelter.

      We don’t get the luxury of police surplus firearms here unless brought in from a foreign country.

  • The_Champ

    That’s frankly amazing to me that some of these will end up in civilian hands. Great news!

    • Bjørn Vermo

      When Norwegian Home Guard replaced the 30-06 chambered Kar98 with the AG3, we were allowed to buy our old service rifle for a token sum. Does not seem they are giving the same kind of offer to those replacing their AG3 with the HK416 🙁

      • iksnilol

        Well, the AG3 is a “real gun” and not just a Mauser.

        Helledussan, mann, AG’en er jo splitter pine ekte gønner asså. Ikkje noko leketøy som en Mauser er.

  • HenryV


    EDIT: Sell the 9500 and use the money to buy the Cadets something new……….

  • Minuteman

    How are the Rangers panning on selling these rifles off as surplus to the general public? The magazine holds 10 while civilian Canuck rifles are restricted to 5.

    • Brennan Manson

      There is no magazine restrictions on bolt action rifles or any other manually cycling firearms.

      • Minuteman

        I stand corrected. Thanks for informing me.

        • nagantino

          Canada? Where’s that. My 1916 SMLE No.1 looks better, shoots better and is rather lovely. The No. 4 is for Nancy boys and makes me sick just to look at it. Ok I’ve been out for a few but hey…..

          • Minuteman

            I’ll agree that the earlier versions look better, but that’s where it ends. The No4 is the culmination of all SMLE experience and definitely the best version. I’m very fond of the SMLE series, Mosin Nagant and Garand. They are the rifles of the good guys. I don’t care for Mausers, they’re just evil and stink up to high heaven. I don’t care that it’s actually a very good rifle. They make good stock for the fire place, because that’s where the 2nd and r3rd German Empires belong.

  • Katanga was also different because of all the mining companies harvesting uranium. The mining companies pretty much ran the show.

  • mazkact

    I’ll take one of each, a No4 and one of the Sako rifles replacing them please.

  • tiger

    It is interesting they are trading in the Lee-Enfields for new Tikka T3 rifles in .308 win. What other guns might be good for the job? In those cold conditions?

  • Robin Adamson

    I find it odd they went for the far more expensive tekka rifle over the ruger scout they were originally considering as the replacements these tekkas are twice the price.

    • Jako

      The Tikka’s will be made domestically. Ruger doesn’t have any manufacturing facilities north of the border and it’s doubtful they’d entertain the idea of opening one. Savage *does* have a facility, but it’s Rimfire only. (All Savage rimfires are made in Canada since the Lakefield buyout around ’95)

      The Tikka deal is for more than just the rifles. It was a decent package they worked out, and the price reflects it accordingly.

  • Glenfilthie

    Those guns will have been through the wringer and most will be wall hangers, boys. A discouraging majority will be junk. Their value will be as historical conversation pieces and that’s it. The Rangers are not known for tender care of equipment.
    Why – if I were king of Wincheter/Rem/Ruger – I would start to reproduce these fine rifles right from scratch from new tools and castings. I would do the Enfield, Garand the Springfield the K31 or whatever that Scandihoovian rifle is. And the Krag. And….and…and…

    • Paladin

      The K31 is Swiss, not Scandinavian.

  • duh

    Eeh, it says de-activated? Over hear that means they un-firearm it.. basically make a wall hanger out of it?

    • dlh0

      Read more closely. Only some of them are being deactivated.

    • dingding69

      They de-active them but then the cadets can use the rifle for rifle drill. I dont think they would make them all unfireable since cadets do shoot the lee enfield as target practice.

  • Mike Lashewitz

    I hope it is at a reasonable price. Like my $160 Mosin…

  • lamarlamar

    What happened to their restrictive gun laws? Turn them over to the CMP and sell them!

  • Fb14352

    There are millions of Lee Enfields in circulation in India: hopefully they will be retired soon!

  • John Hand w/gunpermit

    I had a 303 Enfield years ago, I purchased it at a rifle range for Eight US dollars! I owned it from 1958 until it was burglarized from my home in the late 1980s. An excellent weapon, and I wouldn’t mind owning another.

  • AD

    That’s nice, much better than just destroying them. Even if they are in poor shape, then they can probably still be used for project guns I guess.

  • SpareMeTheBS

    Reading Bob’s comments about non white culture being lazy socialists that are incapable of running their own societies. He says the Belgians wanted to prepare their colonial subjects in the Congo to run the place. They needed until 1980, having started the process in the 1960s. If the Belgians were such benevolent masters why hadn’t they been providing this education all along? Your posts completely ignore the brutality and repression that these colonial masters used to keep their subjects in line. It ignores completely the fact that the indigenous people were treated as third class citizens in their own nations. Your examples leave out one group that it might be hard to justify. What about black Americans? By your logic, they’d be better off under the benevolent loving institution of slavery. Yes, some of these former colonies are a mess. They need to learn and progress. One reason for the lack of leadership in the former colonies is because anyone with leadership potential was ruthlessly stamped out to prevent any challenge to the colonial masters.

    • Bland Samurai

      The 1960-65 Congo Crisis ended Belgian involvement. Even if you don’t know world history, how can one be so lazy as to not Google it????

  • ny bronc buster

    The MOST feared rifle round of the Soviet occupation in Afghanistan!!!
    .303 would penetrate way beyond 7.62×39. Conscripts dug deep holes if sniper was detected. Even poor marksmanship accounted for!!!

  • Fb14352

    You are average dumb Cuban because culture of Cuba is white trash dumb people. So technically you are just one of them. I mean what did Cuba invent? Heck, former colonies do more R&D than Cuba. It’s not culture alone- it’s you inbreeding too. You just happen to somehow got on my US soil. Now to appease “real white people” – you may make all these statements and that all fine. Inferiority complex can make you do a lot of silly stuff.

  • Steve

    Every 303 Enfield I have seen has a long chamber that stretches the brass so it can never be reloaded. Good luck finding surplus 303. But they are pretty nice as a part of history and a wall hanger.

    • Holdfast_II

      Privi Partisan makes plenty of reasonably priced .303 Brit.

      Gotta love those whacky Serbians.

      • Steve

        Thanks. Good to know.

        • Jako

          I’ve found Winchester brass holds up pretty well for multiple reloads. Federal has a shorter reload life.

          The key is to keep brass to a particular rifle, and then size and trim accordingly.

          I have four Lee Enfields in my safe, and each one has a corresponding box of reloads and a baggy of rifle specific brass.

          The SMLE is the real brass killer though. Far less use out of the cases than the No4’s.