The bores of rifles and other weapons become clogged with fouling after repeated firing. Although modern smokeless powders leave far less residue than black powder did, the bores can still become dirty and this fouling can affect the accuracy and safety of the weapon. To help clean the Lee Enfield rifle, all soldiers were issued with a pull through that was kept in the small compartment in the butt of the rifle:Tonight we are looking at a rifle pull-through that I believe is the correct one for the Lee-Enfield:A metal weight is fitted to one end; initially brass, white metal was often used as an economy measure in the Second World War:The cord of the pull-through needs to be tightly coiled and this example has clearly not been undone for many years:The small arms manual for the Lee Enfield Rifle explains how to use the pull-through:
- Open butt trap and remove oil-bottle and pull-through. Unroll and straighten out pull through. Remove sling.
- Fitting gauze- in war-time the gauze will be kept fitted to the pull-through. To fit it, fold it as in Fig.2, the longer sides taking the shape of an “S”. Open the loop of the pull-through nearest the weight and put one side of it in each loop of the “S”. Coil each half of the gauze tightly around the cord until the two rolls thus formed meet. Remove loose strands. To make the gauze fit the bore tightly, pack it with a small piece of flannelette if necessary. The gauze will always be oiled before use.
- Cleaning the Barrel
- Place a piece of flannelette, size 4 inches by 2 inches, in centre loop and wrap it around the cord. Insert weight into the breech. With butt on ground, pull the cord straight through the barrel. Avoid cord rubbing against the side of the barrel. Repeat as necessary, changing flannelette when required.