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Thread: Low #no springfield?

  1. #1
    Boolit Buddy
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    Low #no springfield?

    I am watching several guns on an online auction, a realty co locally, has a huge amount of guns from a private collection. The 1903 is serial #26288, and I am thinking that this is a low#, subject to blowup. It is totally original, parkerized finish. All replies appreciated.

  2. #2
    Boolit Buddy roverboy's Avatar
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    From what I've heard that would run in the bunch that were improperly heat treated. How dangerous they really are is anybody's guess.
    Mrs. Hogwallop up and R-U-N-N-O-F-T.

  3. #3
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    This is enlightening.

    http://m1903.com/03rcvrfail/
    The solid soft lead bullet is undoubtably the best and most satisfactory expanding bullet that has ever been designed. It invariably mushrooms perfectly, and never breaks up. With the metal base that is essential for velocities of 2000 f.s. and upwards to protect the naked base, these metal-based soft lead bullets are splendid.
    John Taylor - "African Rifles and Cartridges"

    Forget everything you know about loading jacketed bullets. This is a whole new ball game!


  4. #4
    Boolit Buddy
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    Thanks guys, I thought I was right!!

  5. #5
    Boolit Buddy mattw's Avatar
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    I have 2 that fall in the range. 1 is a perfect numbers matching gun with the perfect matching stock... never gets shot. The second gets shot just about every weekend. It has a random sporter stock, fantastic peep sights and all but 1 part in the action is numbers matching. It gets fed a good load of 4895 and cast bullets. Would I worry about shooting factory ammo.. no! Did it regularly 20+ years ago before I started loading '06.

    But, this is my choice as I dearly love the rifle! BTW, it was fed HXP for reloadable brass when I shot factory. Since then thousands of cast. It could go wrong, but so could any gun I own, or that you own.

    This is my Rock Island. Low 5 digit s/n and all. To bad that the barrel was turned and the sights removed and it was re-blued.

    Last edited by mattw; 10-03-2018 at 09:59 PM.

  6. #6
    Boolit Master
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    I wouldn't fire one that does not have the "Hatcher Hole". I suspect that the process of boring that hole would reveal whether or not the steel was brittle below the surface.
    If hardened all the way through it would be extremely difficult to bore such a hole without breaking the drill bit.

  7. #7
    Boolit Buddy
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    I have 2-1903's one is sporterized the 2nd is bellow 500,000. Being this isn't rifle country and I have 2 other 30-06 as well that don't get used I decided I'm going to use the low number as a lite load cast plinker as I wanted to dedicate one for this anyway. I did the research and have found it inconclusive at best. I got mine for free, I certainly wouldn't spend much money on a low number 1903.

  8. #8
    Boolit Master
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    Personally, I'm a lot less nervous about an extremely low numbered rifle than I am from a higher numbered (but still "low numbered") gun made during that critical period during WWI when production demands were outstripping their capabilities. Such guns were built strictly according to the production protocols of the time and as such are safe (IMO), within the safety parameters of the time. (ie: don't go jacking them up with higher pressure loads than what they intended for in 1906- but that's just good common gun sense when dealing with any firearm.)

    Everybody has a dog in this race it seems. That was mine, limping along after the rabbit, in the back of the pack!

  9. #9
    Boolit Bub
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    Isn't the correct finish for such a low-numbered 1903 bluing? If the gun is indeed parked, I'd guess it's been through arsenal refurb at least once. What that means for safety and your personal risk acceptance, you'd have to decide.

  10. #10
    Boolit Buddy
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    The subject of "Low Number" M1903 rifles has been discussed forever. My reading disclosed that there were a few receiver failures with the low numbers, but the Army never withdrew any low numbers from service in WWI, or WWII.

    Adam

  11. #11
    Boolit Master

    Wayne Smith's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NikA View Post
    Isn't the correct finish for such a low-numbered 1903 bluing? If the gun is indeed parked, I'd guess it's been through arsenal refurb at least once. What that means for safety and your personal risk acceptance, you'd have to decide.
    Yes they were all blued. Parkerizing didn't come into use until just before WWII.
    Wayne the Shrink

    There is no 'right' that requires me to work for you or you to work for me!

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Abbreviations used in Reloading

BP Bronze Point IMR Improved Military Rifle PTD Pointed
BR Bench Rest M Magnum RN Round Nose
BT Boat Tail PL Power-Lokt SP Soft Point
C Compressed Charge PR Primer SPCL Soft Point "Core-Lokt"
HP Hollow Point PSPCL Pointed Soft Point "Core Lokt" C.O.L. Cartridge Overall Length
PSP Pointed Soft Point Spz Spitzer Point SBT Spitzer Boat Tail
LRN Lead Round Nose LWC Lead Wad Cutter LSWC Lead Semi Wad Cutter
GC Gas Check