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Guys

I have seen some traffic on the net that the Afghans were altering dates on firearms in order to make them "pre-1898", and therefore able to be brought back to the states. Anyone have any first hand knowledge of this?

I have be searching high and low for an 1886 Lebel rifle. There was one on an auction site recently that had the ejector, and stacking rod locally replaced. The date that the French placed on the barrel when they refurbished these weapons had obviously been scrubbed, and replaced with 1888. I passed because of all the humped parts and overall poor condition.

By the way, I am still looking for a Lebel if any of you guys have a solid shooter to spare! :grin:
 

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I wouldn't put much weight in finding a "real" firearm of any type that's claimed to have come from AFG unless it came back early in the war. All of the crap I saw was new-ish MFG'ed stuff that was "distressed" to look old...and I wouldn't trust a single one of them to with stand a single round. That said...if all you're looking for is a wall hanger go for it...
 

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There is some pretty good stuff on the internet on the Martini-Henry rifles and Pakistani fakes. There are also a fair number of authentic MH rifles out there; I brought one back when it was legal to do so. The problem was that you had to take the rifle to the MPs, then the JAG office, and you really can't expect anyone to know whether a receiver marked "1897" but with "E.R" (Elizabeth Regina) markings is authentic or not without being a collector. The affidavit tends to say 'Enfield Rifle' ...

This is a good place to start your search with google: "afghan martini henry"
 

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Absolutely, they are doing it.
When I was there I wanted a pre-98 Mosin-Nagant rifle. My go to guy for all stuff RUssian was scouring the countryside and not able to come up with anything.
One day he had a rifle at the bazar that looked great, MN 1891, with cool stickers on the buttstock. I looked it over, good condition, dated 1936.
He said no problem, he would be back next week with one dated with whatever I wanted.

The Afghans are getting smarter and smarter on this stuff. The Martini-Henrys are getting more accurate as the Afghans read our gun forums and know what we are looking for in the way of authenticity. My MH receiver is a darn good one (rest of rifle totally fake, but all inlaid with stuff), with about 50/50 of the experts thinking fake or real.

The are also marking AK bayonets. We were very careful when looking at them to not let the vendors know what we wanted.
 

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The answer is yes they are mindlessly changing dates on Lebels. I found a original all matching one
and best one ever found in 4.5 years there. The dummies buffed out 1886 and
stamped 1886 on it ... reason I know this my serial number range is 1886 but they rubbed it out.

Someone said all had to be stamped 1886 and so they did. However many post 98 dated Lebels are altered as well and got by customs so some GI's got their rifle home.

I agree with the logic of never firing anything that came out of there.
 
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