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Thread: 1903 Springfield-a great rifle!

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    Gunco Regular dario541's Avatar
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    Default 1903 Springfield-a great rifle!

    One great rifle out there is the American Springfield Model 1903. It is based on the German Mauser of 1898, which is considered by many to be the all-time champion bolt action rifle. Although, some modifications were made on the Springfield to try to avoid infringing on Mauser patents, The USA had to pay $400,000 in royalties to the Mauser firm. No matter, we still ended up with a terrific rifle that lasted through two World Wars and into Korea and Viet Nam. This gun was manufactured from 1903 until 1965.
    When the Springfield was introduced, our military weapon was the 30-40 Krag-Jorgenson. It was a good rifle, but slow to reload. So, the Springfield was adopted to take its place. Inasmuch as we were using a 30 caliber rifle, the decision was made to stay with the 30. This new cartridge had a heavy round nosed bullet. It was called the “30 Caliber, 1903. A few years later, the bullet was changed to the familiar “Spitzer” pointed shape and the cartridge was renamed the “30 Caliber, 1906.“ This nomenclature was later shortened to “30-06“ and became one of the 2 most popular centerfire calibers (the other being the famous 30-30) in American shooting history.
    The Springfield was made in several variations over the years. Early ones were made with open barrel mounted rear sights. Some that were made during WW2 had receiver mounted aperture (peep) sights. During WW2 some were made with 2 groove barrels.
    The Springfield lasted so long because it was a fine weapon. It was not overly heavy, it was accurate (some were used as sniper rifles), it rarely failed and was comfortable to use.
    What’s not to like? I once owned one. I wish I still had it. It had been put in a sporting stock, but everything else was pure Springfield.
    There is one problem that you have to watch out for. During the early years, metal workers hadn’t learned how to do the best job of heat treating metal in order to strengthen it. Thus it was, that early Springfields can blow up in your face. So, you NEVER want to shoot low-numbered Springfield Rifles. Here are the numbers:

    Springfield Armory 800,000

    Rock Island Armory 286,506

    If you run across a Springfield with numbers lower than these, DON’T shoot it! It is good ONLY for collecting and display. But, if you do get a chance to purchase a “High Number” Springfield, I’m sure that you will get fine service from it.

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    No Hope For Me 1biggun's Avatar
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    What’s not to like?
    THE ONES I HAVE HANDLED FELT HEAVY MAYBE IM WRONG.

    ID RATHER HAVE A NICE MAUSER IN THE CALIBURE OF MY CHOICE.

    I DONT LIKE THE LOOKS OF THE BOLT ON THE SPRINGFILED MUCH .

    ITS A GOOD GUN NO DOUBT. TO BAD THERE ARE NOT MANY CHEAP TO PLAY WITH .

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    Gunco Regular Eugene Onegin's Avatar
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    I had one with the straight stock,didn't like it ,sold it.
    Tree huggin' dirt worshipper!

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    Gunco Member wpage's Avatar
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    It is interesting that US paid Mauser $400,000.oo for the bolt right...
    God so loved the world He gave his only Son...
    ...Believe in Him and have everlasting life.
    John 3:16

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    Gunco Regular dario541's Avatar
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    As for the stock, there are plenty of replacement stocks available.
    The one thing that the 1903 Springfield contributed to American gun owners was its caliber: 30-1906, the most popular caliber of the last 100 years, the 30-06 Springfield! The 30-06 has been used in many different makes and models of guns since its inception. It is the caliber that ALL OTHERS are compared to. Sometimes when you read of a new cartridge development you will see "It is faster than the 06." "It is more powerful than the 06." It will do just about anything that the 06 will do." And, so it goes.
    If ever a high number 1903 Springfield comes my way, I will give it a good home.
    Another thing-there are plenty of spare parts available for this rifle.

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    GuncoHolic twa2471's Avatar
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    I didn't know if you saw the pics of the sporter Springfield I just finished up or not dario541, check it out,, It came out pretty good it's under The Springfield's done,, in the "BIY from other stuff" area. That's 2 I own,, I love them. Can't wait to sight it in, but have to wait till spring to get the bench out and sight it in good and to be comfortable doing it.

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    Gunco Regular dario541's Avatar
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    In the current issue of Shotgun News (3-4-2013) Sarco has two different models of the 1903 Springfield for sale.
    One is the original model. It is in "excellent" condition. It has original Remington barrels with good rifling. It comes with original stocks and hand guards. It doesn't indicate if these rifles are available in "high numbers" or not. The price is $695. A good buy if it does have a High Number.
    They also have the 1903 A3 model. These were manufactured during the early years of WW2 as America was trying to get arms for all of our fighting men. It comes with new GI barrels. It, too, is in excellent condition. But, there is one thing I would want to know first. Some A3 models were made with 2 groove rifling. It may have been adequate for the times, But I would want 4 grooves in my barrel. So, if I was to buy one, this is a question that I would ask. These also have a peep sight on the receiver. They cost $595. A great deal if it has the 4 groove barrel.

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    jrs
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    B.U.F. (Bald, Ugly, Fat) jrs's Avatar
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    I have an M1903 manufactured in April 1942 on the original Rock Island tooling that I have shot at 1000 yards and hit a 36 inch steel target 5 for 5 with. (yeah, I have witnesses)
    jrs
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    Gunco Regular dario541's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jrs View Post
    I have an M1903 manufactured in April 1942 on the original Rock Island tooling that I have shot at 1000 yards and hit a 36 inch steel target 5 for 5 with. (yeah, I have witnesses)

    It would be very difficult to find anything that could do better. Congratulations.

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    No Hope For Me 1biggun's Avatar
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    In the current issue of Shotgun News (3-4-2013) Sarco has two different models of the 1903 Springfield for sale
    ANY TIME I EVER CALL SARCO FOR SOMETHING THERE OUT.

    THEY RAN THE SAME ADD FOR MAUSER RECVIERS FOR AT LEAST TWO YEARS AN NEVER HAD ANY.

    SOME SAY THE TWO GROOVE BARRELS SHOT BETTER. I DONT KNOW. NEVER SHOT A TWO GROOVE BARREL .

    I MADE A BUNCH OF 7.62X25 DRILL RIFLE BARRELS THAT SARCO HAD WITH THE CHAMBER CUT OFF. ABOUT HALF OF THEM WERE CRAP AN UNUSABLE . THE GOOD ONES SHOT GOOD.

    THE 30-06 IS A GREAT ROUND I HAVE SEVERAL RIFLES IN THAT CALIBUR. IF WE HAD LOST THE WAR THE 8MM WOULD BE THE ROUD THT EVERY THING IS COMPARED TO . ALSO THE 7MM MAUSER IN A LOT OF THE WORLD IS MORE POPULAR IM TOLD.

    IF I CANT KILL IT WITH A 30-06 I SHOULD NOT BE HUNTING IT IS MY THOUGHTS .

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