03s bum me out.


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collateral
December 21, 2007, 04:01 AM
I went to chicago today, and on the way home I stopped at the new Cabelas in Indiana. They had a Springfield 03 there for only 600. The outside of it looked fine, and it had most of the finish, but the bolt felt REALLY loose upon opening it, and the bore was REALLY bad, the worst Ive seen on a milsurp....or any other rifle.

I thought about buying it anyways, as a display piece. Even if I never fired it, it would still be awesome to own a piece of history.

All of the 1903s I find are so expensive, and when I found this one I was hoping for a deal, but with that barrel it wasnt even worth getting.

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wayne in boca
December 21, 2007, 08:17 AM
The sad fact of the matter is that all 03s are old now,and lots of old things are worn out.Barrels,however,are relatively easy and affordable to replace with USGI or commercial ones.And bolts are dirt cheap and available (1903A3 bolts also fit 1903s).I have an 03A3 that I bought for $400.00 with a rusty bore.Got a New in Wrap USGI barrel and now she shines.See if you can knock the price down based on the barrel condition.Might be a diamond in the rough.

chieftain
December 21, 2007, 09:30 AM
yea go for it.

My 03A3 Smith Corona is in great shape, and I picked it up about 10 years ago for $250.

Shoots great. I don't really want to shoot it to much, though. I tend to shoot the 1917 enfield a lot more, of the two. And of my M1 Garand and M1 carbine, I shoot the M1A/M14 the most of all of them.

Like wayne said, get it, and fix it up. There can be no better tribute or hobby than to get one of these old war horses back in fighting trim.

PS Get the bayonet too. My 16" bayonet fits on my M1 Garand too.

Good Luck

Fred

Ash
December 21, 2007, 10:00 AM
Heh, you ought to see how 1917 Enfields are going now! I saw a Remington that the seller insisted on getting $550 for - and it was a chopped sporter!

Ash

SlamFire1
December 21, 2007, 10:36 AM
A3 barrels are still affordable. Try to find an affordable 03 barrel. I figure they start at $200.00.

chieftain
December 21, 2007, 10:59 AM
Heh, you ought to see how 1917 Enfields are going now! I saw a Remington that the seller insisted on getting $550 for - and it was a chopped sporter!

Ash

Wow. I think I gave 300 or so for the Enfield about.......6 years ago.

Yea, buy it.

Fred

Grizzly Adams
December 21, 2007, 11:32 AM
My 03A3 Smith Corona is in great shape, and I picked it up about 10 years ago for $250.

I know its unchristian, bit I HATE YOU!:evil:

chieftain
December 21, 2007, 12:20 PM
I know its unchristian, bit I HATE YOU!

Yea, I know. That is appropriate hate too!

Wait, let me build the fire.

My M1 Carbine, Postal Meter, with the paratrooper folding stock (not original) I got for $50 bucks, although I had to invest in it to get it working, $20 bucks for an extractor and the gunsmith to put it in. That was about 8 years ago.

Side match, The carbine, garand, and 03 were all made in 1943. OORAH!

How is that for twisting your tail. [Places both thumbs in both ears and wiggles fingers at the ole' Grizz!]

HO HO HO!

Merry Christmas to all.

Fred

MechAg94
December 21, 2007, 12:28 PM
I am glad I got a 1903A3 with a good barrel from the CMP a few years back before they ran out. It shoots great. I might try to pick up a bolt and barrel for future use though.

I got a 1917 also, but it was a parade rifle so the bore is corroded a bit. It still does ~8 to 10" groups, but not really any better than that. CMP was selling barrels for them, but I don't know if they will reorder some or not.

I know my Dad picked up a 1903A3 for about $350 in the mid-90's. It was a little gun show in Brenham, TX.

bofe954
December 21, 2007, 01:07 PM
I just got one with a horrible barrel and it has cleaned out pretty well. It seems to shoot fine. I'd haggle the price (or just keep looking). Try and get it priced with rebarrelling in mind and then hope that it isn't needed.

Vaarok
December 21, 2007, 01:22 PM
I got an 03A3 with a chipped front sight blade for $400 in October, and a minty M1903 at an estate auction last year for $455. They're out there, you just have to look. And look in places that don't charge retail.

Vern Humphrey
December 21, 2007, 01:26 PM
I have two 03A3s -- a Remington and a Smith-Corona. Since I have lots of other .30-06s, I mainly shoot them with cast bullets. They'll last forever that way.

lencac
December 21, 2007, 02:36 PM
$600 for a worn out 03 is about 4 times too much. And if the bolt is that loose it might very well be the receiver that is worn excessively also. My .02 is ignorethat rifle .... for $600 you can do a lot better out there. These pics are of an 03A3 I bought for $125 as a junker. Only the bolt assembly and receiver were worth keeping. I got a new wide body C-type stock and handguard from Numrich the correct dated brand new 2 groove Remington barrel for $80 and all new mil-surplus hardware. Had refinished. Only the receiver, barrel and front sight sleeve should parkerized the rest should be blued. In 1943 that how remington did it NEW not rebuild. I completely bedded it and put a timney comp trigger in it. It is capable of 1 MOA with good handloads. Point is I got a absolutely brand new 1903A3 for under $700 and the pleasure and pride of building it.
http://img514.imageshack.us/img514/5417/img2889bu3.jpg
http://img297.imageshack.us/img297/9149/img2888ms2.jpg
http://img183.imageshack.us/img183/3777/03barrel2cq1.jpg
http://img177.imageshack.us/img177/7425/03barrel1yq1.jpg

bofe954
December 21, 2007, 02:52 PM
lencac- I have read your other 03 posts, real nice. Where did you find the barrel for $60? Just curious. My barrel is a little rusty but good enough, for $60 though I'd buy one. Maybe have it installed down the road.

lencac
December 21, 2007, 03:04 PM
Bofe954 it was $80 but if memory serves me correctly I got through an ad in the Shotgun News a couple of years ago. In hind sight I should have bought the entire batch. I can't remember the outlet now but it doesn't matter cause that source was exhausted about a week after the ad was posted.

shuvelrider
December 21, 2007, 04:28 PM
Been shooting my Rem03A3 (inherited) with a Williams peep sight from the 60's, common mod at that time. very good gun as I shoot my reloads at a 15inch steel plate 200 and 300 yards. Been working with a Model of 1917 ( Winchester), arsenal rebuilt after WW1. An older man owned it for around 60 years and still had storage grease in it, consignment sale at the local shop and I worked a trade with the shop owner. My reloads tend to lock up tighter in this gun even though I seat the bullet under OAL. What is current value on the market even though its not for sale?

lencac
December 21, 2007, 11:16 PM
I'd like to see some pics please :) The round locking-up is not due to the OAL, it's cause the chamber dimensions are tighter on the 1917, not uncommon. The brass you shoot from each you should keep separate and after they are fire-formed to each particular rifle just neck size them when reloading. It will extend the life of the brass and produce better accuracy.

Oohrah
December 22, 2007, 02:27 AM
New barrels A3, two groove, still in the wrap run between $100 and
$150. I could kick myself for not buying a buch more in the early
80s from DCM. They sold for 95 cents each new. I got two left
waiting to find an action to do a rebuild. Would you believe the
NRA sold them for $14.50? Xmas bah humbug! Can't believe my
luck when they had a special opening for A4s. I drew a never fired
one for the same $14.50. Oohrah!:D

Dr. Peter Venkman
December 22, 2007, 02:30 AM
They bum me out too.

Mainly because I don't have one.

Scanr
December 22, 2007, 12:24 PM
Quote:
My 03A3 Smith Corona is in great shape, and I picked it up about 10 years ago for $250.
I know its unchristian, bit I HATE YOU!

May I top you and say, I got mine for free. It was my wife's grandfather's. :)

Vern Humphrey
December 22, 2007, 12:54 PM
I got my Smith-Corona for $180 and my Remington for free.:neener:

shuvelrider
December 22, 2007, 04:43 PM
To lencac who responded to my post about my Mod1917, thanks for the insight on the tolerances. I'll have to post some pics along the way, get my kids to show me how and put it under a new thread on P17's. Any input as to value for such a gun?, all I'm going to do is rub in some linseed oil to keep the wood fresh. Picked up on milsurps after deployment to Iraq in 03-04, loads of british stuff in that country from the older days and we cant get our hands on them--darn!

AirplaneDoc
December 22, 2007, 04:49 PM
My 1903 was picked up at Rock Island for $39, unfortunately my grandfather, cut the other one down for a sporter. At least I got one of them

lencac
December 22, 2007, 05:15 PM
No prob shuvelrider. If it is in very good to excellent condition it may be worth upwards of $500. Although these have come in under the radar, so to speak, I believe that as good 03's become harder to find the M1917 will become more sought-after and hence push the prices up. It was not all that long ago, perhaps only a few years that I was seeing these things in excellent condition going in the $350 range.
Also if you are interested I have a couple of excellent receipts for ammo that should prove to be very accurate for the 17s. And if you like I have a couple of tips on checking and improving the bedding between barreled action and stock that requires very little in the way of tools and materials without glass or epoxy bedding. Just requires your dilgent time more than anything.
Here's a pic of one I just recently aquired. Only $50 changed hands the rest was in trade.
http://img516.imageshack.us/img516/3898/img3032nw2.jpg
http://img444.imageshack.us/img444/7818/img3031ef0.jpg
To post an image.
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pdh
December 22, 2007, 11:24 PM
I got my 03a3 for $125.00 off a good friend about 15 years ago or so...

http://i123.photobucket.com/albums/o312/hainespd/03a3.jpg

http://i123.photobucket.com/albums/o312/hainespd/03a3closeup.jpg

lencac
December 23, 2007, 12:07 AM
I like it. Were you waering a mask when you got from a "friend', and is he still a friend :neener:
It's really amazing to think that as well made as these rifle were that they were intended to be military issue.

pdh
December 23, 2007, 05:41 AM
Yep....he's still a friend...but no more great deals on anything like this.....He knew how much I wanted a 03.....
They are great rifles for sure.....Also...that is a beautiful M1917!

Also...alittle help on history....did Alvin York use the 03 springfield or the M1917......I thought I read a article on an interview from his son that he used an 03.......

lencac
December 23, 2007, 06:25 PM
pdh thanks. M1917 are no slouches either but given a choice I'd rather have the 03.
That is an interesting subject. If memory serves me correctly I believe I read one time in American Rifleman an article that said that although Sgt. York was issued a M1917 he ditched it and picked up an 03. Was something about he liked the sights on the 03 better cause he could lead his targets better at long range with it and the 03s had a windage adjustment for the rear sight. That guy must have had an extrordinary set of peepers. I've shot 03s, 03A3s and 17s and although the sights on the 03 are the most precise of the bunch, I believe thay are also the most difficult to use. Well and as long as we're throwing pics out there here's a couple of one I custom built to my liking that was purely an exercise in accuracy. (and I like using Image Shack)
http://img517.imageshack.us/img517/4416/img3037nf4.jpg
http://img505.imageshack.us/img505/3031/img3046yu1.jpg
http://img147.imageshack.us/img147/6018/img2977uz7.jpg
http://img143.imageshack.us/img143/6379/1903a4400targetij0.jpg

pdh
December 23, 2007, 08:39 PM
Holy Smokes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Outstanding!!!!!!
Great shooting rifle and rifleman!!

I also have my greatest success in the reloder powders.......is that the max load for the Reloder 19?.........I will check out this load in my springs.......

Impressive shooting and equip............

lencac
December 24, 2007, 02:47 AM
No I don't think it's the max load but not far from it. I think in my Sierra Maunal the max is 57.1 gr. for 168 gr. bullet. I started at 54.0 gr. and as I added 1/2 gr. the groups just kept getting tighter. The OAL is just a freckle over the spec. of 3.340. Haven't had a chance to go back to the range yet but i'm going to see what kind of groups I can get from the Sierra 175 gr. match kings next. That rifle has a Krieger barrel with the external dimensions to mil-spec. It is completely bedded including the forearm and handguard, Timney comp trigger and topped off as you can see with a Leupold VariX II 6x18 with target reticle and knobs. If you look, you can see I inlet the handguard to allow the lowest possible scope rings to fit.

collateral
December 24, 2007, 04:06 PM
I imagine I'll keep looking for one. I'd really like to buy one, but every time I see them they are REAL pricey. I could get a new AR and ammo most of the time and it would still be cheaper.

bofe954
December 25, 2007, 01:10 AM
AR vs 1903 is really a tough comparison.

AR's are nice to have. Possibly laws will change and you'd be better off getting the AR first. The only thing is that AR's are SUPER common and becoming more so. Many, many people have several AR's.

The 1903's are a little harder to come by (which you already know) and aren't being produced by the truckload like AR's, so to compare price vs value is unrealistic.

While we're talking 1903A3's- Why is the front site so low? I read that lencac's was low and mine is too. It's a "C" site. So I ordered one from numrich. It's a little taller but not much. I am going to use the sight height calculator on the brownells page and will make one if necessary but...Why so low? Different ammo then?

I am shooting greek surplus about a foot low at 200yds and the rear site is as low as possible. I'd like it to be a little higher than that. Why would it shoot so high?

.45Guy
December 25, 2007, 01:23 AM
I am shooting greek surplus about a foot low at 200yds and the rear site is as low as possible. I'd like it to be a little higher than that. Why would it shoot so high?Is that a typo? If it's hitting a foot low, a lower front sight would move your POI up...

Vern Humphrey
December 25, 2007, 03:59 PM
While we're talking 1903A3's- Why is the front site so low? I read that lencac's was low and mine is too. It's a "C" site. So I ordered one from numrich. It's a little taller but not much. I am going to use the sight height calculator on the brownells page and will make one if necessary but...Why so low? Different ammo then?

I am shooting greek surplus about a foot low at 200yds and the rear site is as low as possible. I'd like it to be a little higher than that. Why would it shoot so high?

If you're shooting low with the rear sight in the lowest position, raise the rear sight!

If you raise the front sight (by installing a higher sight) it will make the rifle shoot even lower.

bofe954
December 25, 2007, 07:52 PM
Sorry guys, not really a typo, but a brain/typing mismatch. Rear site was set high, rifle shooting high.

Vern Humphrey
December 26, 2007, 10:30 AM
Rear site was set high, rifle shooting high.
Set the rear sight lower, and the rifle will shoot lower.

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