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Posted: 1/8/2006 4:00:17 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/9/2006 1:33:58 PM EDT by notso]
I was going to get one from the CMP and just take what I got, but since they are out, what do I need to look for when shopping for a used one?

Any particular maker?
Markings?
Better serial ranges?

I know this is really an armory question, but I may go look at one on monday and I need to know what to look for and about what price is reasonable.

Thanks
Link Posted: 1/8/2006 5:07:12 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/8/2006 5:15:36 AM EDT by ODA_564]
Buy Bruce Canfield's book




An Illustrated Guide to the '03 Springfield Service Rifle by Bruce N. Canfield. This book is a major expansion of Bruce’s previous work on the Model 1903 service rifles. Covered are all variations of the ’03 service rifle, including pre World War I, World War I, World War II, and a large section on accouterments. The number of period photos of troops armed with ‘03s is amazing. Serial number tables are also included to aid you in identifying when your rifle was made. If you are only going to own one book on the ’03 rifle it should be this one! In my opinion it is Bruce’s best work to date. Hard cover, 8.5” x 11”, 240 pages, countless photos. - Signed by the author at no extra cost! $49.95 Free Shipping!


From Scott Duff's site under 'books'.

The $50 you spend will be worth far more than any internet advice.

"Buy in haste, repent in leisure".

And the chances of walking into the odd gunstore or pawn shop and finding an '03A3 is... slim.

BTW, there were only two US contract builders - Remington and Smith-Corona.

And did you do a Google search under Springfiled 1903A3?

9,930 hits.

Try Collecting and Shooting the US Model 03A3 Rifle - HISTORY

Try Springfield 1903 rifle - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Try Springfield Armory National Historic Site - News


* REMINGTON ARMS PRODUCTION OF M1903, 1903A3, 1903A4

1942-3000001-3348085 (M1903) 1942-3348086-3607999 (M1903A3) 1942-3708000-4707999 (M1903A3) 1942-4992001-5784000 (M1903A3) 1943-3407088-3427087 (M1903A4) 1943-4992001-4997045 (M1903A4) 1943-Z4000000-Z4002920 (M1903A4) TOTAL: 1084079

* SMITH CORONA PRODUCTION OF M1903A3

1943-3608000-3707999 1944-4708000-4992000 TOTAL: 234000

On 18 January 1943 Remington directed to divert from production 20,000 M1903A3 rifles for conversion to the U.S. Rifle M1903A4 (Sniper's). Rifles #3407088-3427087 (from the first "block" of numbers) were diverted, and the first "03-A3" converted was delivered in February 1943.

On 20 June 1943 an additional 8,365 M1909A4 rifles were ordered. "Block" for these rifles and possible future orders was 4922001-5784000. After this block had been used to 4997045, receiver marking was changed to "03-A4" and a new series of numbers begun with Z4000000. The second "block" of "03-A3" numbers was used only to about 4168800 before cancellation of contract ended "03-A3" production 28 February 1944. In March 1944, with receiver Z4002290, production of the M1903A4 was ended. Total production was 1,056,276 rifles, which included about 345,000 M1903 and M1903 (modified), about 711,276 M1903A3, and just 26,653 M1903A4 (short of the 28,365 ordered)

Link Posted: 1/8/2006 5:28:35 AM EDT
I personally like a 1903 better than a 1903/a3.
Link Posted: 1/8/2006 5:33:30 AM EDT

Give this a read. It will certainly help you in your selection.


Letter From 03A3 Expert At CMP On Selecting Your 03A3
Link Posted: 1/8/2006 5:45:14 AM EDT
the 03A3 is teh sweet....that is all you need to know.....
Link Posted: 1/8/2006 6:35:48 AM EDT
If you're going expressly for an 03A3, you may want to give them a call first. Word has it that they are gone, sold out just before Christmas. Still plenty of 03's and Garands, though.
Link Posted: 1/8/2006 5:01:19 PM EDT

Originally Posted By ODA_564:


And the chances of walking into the odd gunstore or pawn shop and finding an '03A3 is... slim.

BTW, there were only two US contract builders - Remington and Smith-Corona.




I found a pawnshop local here that has a SC and a Remington 03A3 as well as a Remington? 03

That is why I am asking what they are worth.

They may have been reparked, because the finish opn the reciever is almost perfect IIRC.

Thnak you for all the great reading. I will have to dig through it.
Link Posted: 1/8/2006 5:39:33 PM EDT
Hate to be the bearer of bad news but all the 03A3's from the CMP are sold out.
Link Posted: 1/8/2006 5:40:35 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Steve_in_PA:
Hate to be the bearer of bad news but all the 03A3's from the CMP are sold out.



Yeah, its a bummer, guess I waited too long.
Link Posted: 1/8/2006 5:51:20 PM EDT
You need one.

Expect prices well over $400 now that the CMP is out.
Link Posted: 1/8/2006 5:53:25 PM EDT


wasn't CMP, gun show impulse buy without knowing anything about them, but it was a nice looking gun so I grabbed it
Link Posted: 1/8/2006 5:54:12 PM EDT
Get a M1917
Link Posted: 1/8/2006 7:56:57 PM EDT

Originally Posted By notso:
[I found a pawnshop local here that has a SC and a Remington 03A3 as well as a Remington? 03

That is why I am asking what they are worth.

They may have been reparked, because the finish opn the reciever is almost perfect IIRC.

Thnak you for all the great reading. I will have to dig through it.



If the finish is black and they have the serial number stamped on the stock they are Greek-returned CMP guns that someone decided to sell.

I saw lots of CMP Garands (rack grades) on dealer's tables at the last gun show here, being sold for 200-300% of what they cost direct from the CMP.

Of course, I saw a HK M16 magazine locally today for $69 plus change. Some folks figure some folks ain't heard of this here internet thingy yet.
Link Posted: 1/8/2006 9:04:13 PM EDT
I think 03A3's have better accuracy potential that the 03's because of the longer sight radius on the 03A3.

It is also easier to get parts and barrels for 03A3's.

Link Posted: 1/8/2006 9:07:26 PM EDT

Originally Posted By sharky30:
img.photobucket.com/albums/v240/mikehunt234/1903A3_and_870_closer.jpg

wasn't CMP, gun show impulse buy without knowing anything about them, but it was a nice looking gun so I grabbed it



Did you break into my house just to take that picture???
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 9:03:09 AM EDT

Originally Posted By ODA_564:

Originally Posted By notso:
[I found a pawnshop local here that has a SC and a Remington 03A3 as well as a Remington? 03

That is why I am asking what they are worth.

They may have been reparked, because the finish opn the reciever is almost perfect IIRC.

Thnak you for all the great reading. I will have to dig through it.



If the finish is black and they have the serial number stamped on the stock they are Greek-returned CMP guns that someone decided to sell.

I saw lots of CMP Garands (rack grades) on dealer's tables at the last gun show here, being sold for 200-300% of what they cost direct from the CMP.

Of course, I saw a HK M16 magazine locally today for $69 plus change. Some folks figure some folks ain't heard of this here internet thingy yet.



It was a gray parkerized finish like I saw on the refinished garand Rcvrs at CMP. Im gonna go look agian today, but would you say barring any major mechanical problems, one is worth ~$500 or so? Even if it has been refinished?
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 9:04:49 AM EDT

Originally Posted By desertmoon:
the 03A3 is teh sweet....that is all you need to know.....



Agreed. Mine is in the safe chillin next to his Garand buddies.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 9:07:38 AM EDT

Originally Posted By NovaHokie9:

Originally Posted By desertmoon:
the 03A3 is teh sweet....that is all you need to know.....



Agreed. Mine is in the safe chillin next to his Garand buddies.



Thats what Im looking to do, give my Garands a good role model to follow.
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 1:37:44 PM EDT
Ok, I went back and got the Smith Corona I saw.

4-43 bbl stamp, serial in the 3.696 mill range (Late 43?)

Finish is good, but not pristine like I thought. I dont think it was Refinished.

Stock is a Pistol grip style like the Garand, probably not original?

4 groove barrel I think, and a mix of blued and Parked parts.

I got it for $500 OTD.

Good? Bad?
Link Posted: 1/9/2006 1:47:18 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/9/2006 1:49:10 PM EDT by TacticalStrat]

Originally Posted By notso:
Ok, I went back and got the Smith Corona I saw.

4-43 bbl stamp, serial in the 3.696 mill range (Late 43?)

Finish is good, but not pristine like I thought. I dont think it was Refinished.

Stock is a Pistol grip style like the Garand, probably not original?

4 groove barrel I think, and a mix of blued and Parked parts.

I got it for $500 OTD.

Good? Bad?



I recently paid $850 for this one and felt like I got a good deal. Mine is an original condition 1943 Remington 03A3. I think someone may have polished up the wood a little with some wax based polish.











Link Posted: 1/9/2006 1:58:59 PM EDT
$500 is okay. Especially for a Smith-Corona.

There were many (including me) that thought that the original CMP prices of $400-425 for the 03/03A3s were too high to begin with. Especially with some of the conditions being reported from the first few that went out. In 2002, when they started selling them, 03/03A3s were going for anywhere from $250-$400 on the open market and interest in them was not high at the time. CMP pricing eventually pushed everything up and created new interest in them though.
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