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Thread: Low SN 03's

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    806

    Talking Low SN 03's

    I'm starting to gain interest in pre 1918 03's. I've read about 4,000,000 articles that all contradict one another on pre 800k Springfields when it comes to failure or receivers. Apparently same goes for RIA. Does anyone have an input on this other than the Hatcher report? How many failed in use in the field? I've read all I can stand about hitting receivers with hammers, etc. I'm ready to start sporting some 03's into deer slayers.

  2. #2
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    Mar 2009
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  3. #3
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    Mar 2009
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    Arizona
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    Default

    I own both pre and post and have shot all of them. The Pre's have value if they have the original barrel because , back when they were cheap, guys could buy a Pre and send the reciever to the NRA and get a Post for a small fee. I had a Rock Island with a 4 digit serial number that had been rebarreled to a 1944 date for WW2 so evidently, it wasn't a real serious concern. They say you can tell a USMC Post rifle because as a precaution, The Military issued an order to drill a second relief hole in the reciever for all Pre guns.The USMC drilled everything.

    Personally, I think it's all crap. However, if selling, any knowledgeable buyer would walk away from a Pre gun that was sporterized, just because they "heard" that the recievers were soft.If you want to make a hunting rifle, use a post. Just my HO, BB

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Location
    Montana
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    My '03 was made in 1917 and is an original sniper version.It's receiver is supposed to be in the "Don't Use" range (784XXX). I have used it for years with factory loads and hand loads with NO problems. Just my 2cents worth.


    Bill

  5. #5

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    At a shop where I sometimes work, we had a huge quantity of 03's and 03A3's including Mark I's. On one occasion moving them around(some were just barreled actions) one got dropped....and broke. IT BROKE! And I believe it had a WW2 barrel. We still have it at the shop! Careful. I have one friend that everytime he gets a new rifle,fires the first round with the receiver under a pillow! I was not that concerned until this incident. I believe ,like most, it was a combination of issues (receiver and bad ammo or receiver and plugged barrel, whatever) but just be careful and if you handload, don't be careless or overzealous!

  6. #6
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    Mar 2009
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    Unfortunately many receivers will crack if dropped on concrete. Caution is always advised when considering a low number gun as a shooter, but the Marines never retired their low number guns and apparently never had a receiver fail.
    Neca eos omnes. Deus suos agnoscet.

  7. #7
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    Arizona
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    I dunno, I went into my room, grabbed an armful of G-43's and Kreigs rifles, took them out to the garage and no matter how many times I dropped them, even from the roof, none of them cracked. I guess I'll just keep on trying, BB

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    806

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    I'll get pics posted as soon as I get it. It's a 200k serial Springfield rebuilt in 1912. I was looking for a good Punitive Expedition rifle and hopefully I've found it. Should be here today. I'm planning on using the Federal M1 rifle loads.

  9. #9

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    PLEASE quit throwing your rifles from the roof! They are hard to replace. Go throw some Mitchells and give them some character!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    806

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    Guys, I got my rifle today. I was really nervous about buying an 03 without better pics off Gunbroker, but the seller answered all my questions and I was pleased with his answers so it's mine. I'll start a new thread to post pics. This thing is freakin' awesome. Though it is not in it's original 1907 configuration, it's in it's original pre WW1 rebuild condition. Patience on pics as it's the holidays and all (kids family etc.)

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