Martini Henry Cavalry Carbine

Martini Henry Cavalry Carbine MKI SX. Introduced: 1895.Withdrawn: From 1903

New Zealand issue 577.450” Martini Henry Cavalry Carbines 500 purchased in 1895 and another batch in 1897 at least one made by Henry Rifle Barrel Co in 1896 and marked IC1, ^ NZ / 97 / 618 and Issued to Volunteer Cavalry who carried cavalry swords instead of bayonets. These MH Cavalry Carbines saw little service in NZ many being replaced from November 1898 with some of the 5000 .303” Martini Enfield MKI rifles or carbines. 500 Martini Henry Carbines were bought by an English Company and shipped to the UK in 1907. Carbine, Cavalry Mark I made 1877‐1889 for British use. Receiver body has rounded lower front corners to make sliding the carbine into a saddle bucket easier. Small cocking indicator to reduce snagging when used in saddle‐buckets. Fore wood secured by the hook arrangement later found in the Mark III and Mark IV Martini rifles. Barrel 21.375 Inches in length with a new, reshaped knox form at the rear of the barrel. Front sight is a thinner barleycorn with side wings to protect the sight from saddle‐wear. Two bands secure the fore wood to the barrel. In 1879, a leather sight cover was added, this required wood screws be installed on each side of the fore wood just below the rear sight. The leather cover had ears that hooked over the screws to protect the sight from snagging and saddle‐wear. In 1879, it came to be known as the “Martini‐Henry Carbine, Cavalry Mark I” Lower sling swivel was removed, but some models were later fitted with lower sling swivels. No bayonet lug. Though officially British Army Service was from 1877‐1882, the Mark I Carbine was manufactured until at least 1896. Mostly under contract to India. 500 + Carbines went to New Zealand in 1895 more in 1897, 40 Carbines went to the Cape Government of South Africa. Later carbines were fitted with a strengthened extractor marked SX.

Martini Henry Cavalry Carbine MKI I.C.1 made by Enfield 1888. Knox form marked ^/NZ /95/87. Round end on clearing rod. Marks on other MHCC 1’s

 

Rear sight ramp adjustable 100 to 300yards Rear sight ladder adjustable 400 to 1000yards

 

Acknowledgements and special thanks to: Phil Cregeen, Grant Sherriff, John Carter, Osborne Arms Museum for images.