British 303 Rifle Identification : Easy Method Discussed to Find Out

What comes to your mind on hearing about guns? The funny childhood memories top the list, plus some tension considering that guns are typically related to crime and law enforcement.

Well, that reminds me of how we ran around with rifles in our hands, shooting one another playfully as kids. And the british 303 rifle is one of the nostalgic rifles out there that reminds me of such beautiful memories.

Today, I am going to unveil the 303 British Rifle accuracy, identification, serial numbers location, and how they hunt moose and grizzly bears.

Accuracy of a 303 British Rifle

Accuracy of a 303 British Rifle

The accuracy of your rifle is heavily dependent on what you want it to be effective at. After figuring that out, it is important to note that they are normally shot at a meter range of about 700-800 meters.

However, the latest one could go up to 1200 yards since it had adjustable sights. The initial replicas were known for volley sights that could even shoot at ranges of over a mile, or even past 1,500 yards.

How to Do British 303 Rifle Identification

How to identify British 303 Rifle

Serial Numbers: The serial number was used to track the rifle through its rack number. Common on most rifles, it gives you more information about the serial system, the barrel date stamp, plus the manufacturer’s markings.

Manufacturer identification: The name of the manufacturer together with the date and type of manufacture is indicated on the rifle. This would be on either the left side butt socket or the left side of the receiver.

Mark: you will find the mark of the rifle on the left side of the receiver wall. This applies to No. 4 and No. 5 rifles.

Model: the model will also be stamped onto the left side of the receiver wall for No. 4 and No. 5 rifles.

What Year was My 303 British Made?

What year was my 303 British made?

In December 1888, it was put into service for the Lee-Metford rifle, and first developed as a black powder in Britain. Thereafter in the year 1891, the cartridge was then modified to use smokeless powder.

From 1889 to the 1950s, it was the standard Commonwealth and British military cartridge for machine guns and rifles. The 7.62 x 51mm NATO later replaced it.

Where are the Serial Numbers on a Lee Enfield?

Where are the serial numbers on a Lee Enfield

The serial numbers have five digits with either an “É” or an “F” prefix. You can find them in various places on your rifle. These include the receiver ring, on the bottom of the fore-end, and they can as well be stamped on the rear of the bolt handle.

Hunting Moose and Grizzly Bear with 303 Rifles

The 303 rifles are the best recommendations for you when you are out there hunting moose and grizzly bears. With properly placed shots you will probably take them down within 200 to 300 yards.

No doubt about their effectiveness since they are a great, distant, deadly cartridge with full power. The rifles fire long, heavy bullets with a fast twist rate and good penetrating ability.

Is 308 the Same as 303?

Is 308 the same as 303

No. The 308 rifle is different from the 303. The 308 is possibly considered one of the world’s best medium game cartridges. It functions in many modern rifles and is also a modern high-pressure type of cartridge.

On the other hand, the 303 type of cartridge is a fine deer one that is only limited to function in rimmed cartridges due to its low pressure. Its case capacity is also slightly low compared to the 308 rifles.

Looking at the good side of the 303, it has a lower muzzle velocity which is suitable for the heavier game loadings.

Is 303 Savage the Same as 303 British?

Is 303 Savage the same as 303 British

Not really. The 303 Savage is different from the 303 British and cannot be mistakenly interchanged.

As well as sporting rifles in a single shot, the occasional lever-action Winchester 1895, the odd double rifle, and the bolt action, the 303 British can be found in several military firearms including P14s, Martini Enfields, and Lee Enfields.

The 303 Savage is on the other hand limited to rifles like the 99. This typically tells you that the 303 Savage and the 303 British have different rifles.

Frequently Asked Questions

This section aims at answering some common questions that might not have been covered earlier in the article. Well, I’m sure you do not want to miss out on any important information as far as the rifles are concerned. Read on to find out.

1. What is a 303 rifle?

It is a magazine-fed bolt action rifle. It saw action in both World War I and II and also served the Commonwealth, plus the English military since 1895. Before being handed over to the police forces, it served the Indian army till the disastrous 1962 India-China War.

The rifle was originally manufactured in the UK by Royal Small Arms Factory, Enfield, and invented by James Paris Lee.

2. Where is the serial number on a 303 British rifle?

On this rifle, the barrel, receiver, and bolt are the possible places where you will find the serial number. The underside of the rear sight and the nose cap will also have the serial number stamped. It may as well be stamped in the butt, like in the case of the Australian Lithgow’s rifle.

3. Is 303 ammo hard to find?

No. This is a question that most people always have, especially those looking forward to making their first purchase. However, you cannot easily bump into it when you walk into most retail shops.

You can simply find them on the shelves of large shooting supply stores or gun shops, or even make a point of ordering them online to avoid the shop-to-shop hustle.

4. Is 303 British still made?

Yes. Though it is ordinarily made as hunting fodder, it currently remains in continuous manufacture. It has the perfect accuracy and velocity when using it for hunting.

It is still used in Canada when military surplus rifles are cheap and readily available, as a popular moose and bear cartridge. The rangers in Canada use it for protection against the polar bear and as a means of survival.

5. Is 303 a good hunting rifle?

Yes. The hunters brought down many buffaloes and elephants, as well as other types of game animals. The bullet penetrated well with an outstanding sectional density, although it had a modest velocity.

You can use this rifle for hunting since anything shot at will not recognize the difference. It is deadly for a short distance, bearing in mind that it has a full power cartridge.


The British 303 Rifle is satisfactory for hunting for civilian sporting purposes in New Zealand, Canada, and Australia. It was found useful for all species of game and was common with many hunters of non-dangerous game species like impala and Boers.

Lastly, you are permitted to carry your rifle with you when going out on a hunting adventure. Now go ahead and make the best use of it. Be safe!

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