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  1. #1

    Default 1903 Springfield prices...

    I've been considering my next rifle purchase and I have three ideas (WASR-10, M1 Garand, 1093 Springfield). I have a pretty good idea of how much the other three are going for price wise, but I have no idea what the Springfield goes for.

    I know this is all relative to condition and such, but does anyone have a price range I could expect from worst to best quality possible? For example, I saw a 1903A3 with a 1943 dated barrel for $850 the other day at a local shop. It looked very nice (stock, bore, ect) but I didn't know if it was worth that much. Any help so I can look objectively at the next gunshow? Thanks!

  2. #2
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    You should be able to pick up a nice 1903a3 for around $650.00, $700.00 tops

  3. #3
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    If your shopping 1903-03a3 rifles be sure to check the cut off area on the left side for signs of welds,grinding,mismatched finish.So many drill rifles have been sold,and rebuilt in the last couple of years that you have to be careful not to pay big money for someone elses project rifle.650.00 is the ball park on a 03a3,03"s a bit higher for a nice one.

  4. #4
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    Price is based on originality and condition. A flat brand new condition 03A3 could garner $850 quite easily.

    The parameter of your question is very broad. Are you looking for a M1903 or M1903A3? The range runs from a couple of hundred to tens of tousands of dollars, depending on condition, originality and rarity of the variant.

    A run of the mill rebuild in servicable condition would run in the figures quoted by the others. The advice given on the reclaimed 03A3 drill rifles needs to be committed to memory and used on every 03A3 you look at.
    Last edited by Deputy Dan; 11-26-2009 at 05:15 PM.

  5. #5
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    I also would like to know what one would expect to pay for a 1903 Springfield or Rock Island high numbered receiver with a straight finger groove stock, all milled parts and an excellent bore.

    R,
    Beck

  6. #6
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    To many variables but again, $650.00- $700.00 in good average condition for a arsenal rebuild. They are out there just have to look
    Last edited by Orlando; 11-26-2009 at 06:35 PM.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beck View Post
    I also would like to know what one would expect to pay for a 1903 Springfield or Rock Island high numbered receiver with a straight finger groove stock, all milled parts and an excellent bore.

    R,
    Beck
    Again, many variables. Original rifle with original wood and metal components and finish, grasping groove or non grasping groove s type stock, rebuild, late WW1 or post great war/inter war/pre WW2, NM... it goes on and on.

    A $1000-1500 would be a ballpark entry level of a 1903 with an excellent bore, grasping groove late WW1 original... and that is a private deal... auctions can run much higher. Most excellent M1903s have disappeared into collections. I say late WW1 because you added RIA, and the last RIA rifles were produced in early 1919 (still considered WW1 production due to the fact that the peace treaty wasn't signed yet, technically we were still at war) and they are very scarce in original form.

    Reworks sell for far less, are just as servicable, just not as desirable to collectors.
    Last edited by Deputy Dan; 11-26-2009 at 07:27 PM.

  8. #8
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    I would stay away from the ones that were sold a few years back from the CMP. If all you want is a shooter, they are fine. I agree with Dan. Most all original and nice ones are probably in private collections.

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    Yup






  10. #10
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    Heres a 1903a3 all Remington except for a SC bolt that I pick up awhile back for $650.00. Came with 1917 leather sling and metal oiler
    Pics are bfore I had a chance to even wipe it down.
    Owner I bought if from paid $19.00 for her in the late 1950's
    http://s47.photobucket.com/albums/f1...t=b8001f19.pbw

  11. #11

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    My camera's broke so no pics right now, but I paid $800 for my 1903 Springfield ser#1237xxx with a 1921 barrel stamp and a pristine bore. The date stamp on the barrel is in the same date range as the serial number so I believe it's all original. I've got a 3-shot bragging target fired at 100yds. with, '57 issue ball ammo, all three rounds that could be covered with a quarter inside the 1.75" X ring.

    Evidently at some time or another someone sanded the rifle and refinished it with BLO. You can see where the cartouches were but you can't make them out.

    All in all I think I stole it.

    Rob

  12. #12
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    Thanks allot guys, I was thinking somewhere between $700 & $1000 for a good one.
    To narrow down my desires (or broaden it) a late WWI or between wars Springfield, re-work would be ok, prefer all milled parts, excellent barrel 4 groove, straight stock with finger grooves, straight bolt if possible. I am not too concerned with marks but one marked with POD or HOD would be a plus. Not looking for Remington 1903's or 1903A3's.
    I am a little new to the 1903 and just want an excellent shooter with some class. Tax returns/refunds is just around the corner, I can't wait!!

    R,
    Beck

  13. #13
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    Those are mighty fine looking rifle gun's Dan.

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    Thanks K98a Man

    Beck, an original Remington will hold it's value to a far greater extent than a rebuilt Springfield or Rock Island. They shoot the same, and early Remingtons very closely approximate a late WW1 M1903.

    Here is an early Remington still covered in the cosmoline with bits of straw the British packed it in. This is one of a small lot of Red Star rifles...most were as new except for some dings on the wood from two trips across the pond. You are looking about $2K for an early Remington with that provenance.




  15. #15
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    PS

    Beck,

    You can find original Remington M1903 rifles for far less than $2K... if you are truly interested in purchasing an M1903 rifle, obtain a few good reference books on the subject. If you don't wish to but them, check your local library. The net is good for quick and dirty info, but indepth knowledge can only be gained by pouring over research materials.

    As far as rebuilds go, if you find one with a HS marked barrel, the barrel was produced by High Standard. They are very good tubes.

    You need to learn the heat lot codes for M1903 bolts... you are looking for a straight bolt, and most of them were manufactured with single heat treated carbon steel. They are not recomended for shooting. A small number of straight bolts were manufactured of double heat treated carbon steel, and fewer manufactured of nickel steel. It is important to learn what bolt is in a rifle one intends to shoot.

    Be prepared to revise your budget upward, if the right rifle comes along.

    Good luck in your search.
    Last edited by Deputy Dan; 11-28-2009 at 10:49 AM.

  16. #16
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    Dan,

    In your first pic, top rifle, can you tell me about it? I can't make out the stock very well to see what stock type it might be. Is the wood walnut?

    That's an unusual color too. I've seen the red stocks and the dark, almost black stocks, but never a blond stock.

    Fantastic collection! Thanks for sharing!
    foudufoot's offical stalker

  17. #17
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    Yes, it is very light. I don't have an answer as to why, maybe it is sapwood... walnut sapwood is much lighter than heartwood.

    It is a one bolt GRG cartouched stock. The rifle is a Springfield 1903 modified for the 1906 cartridge. This rifle was originally a rod bayonet rifle produced in 1903 (28,000 S/N) that was rebuilt in 1909. The barrel is an SA 6-09. The handguard is a no sight groove no clip unit. The rifle is completely blued.

    Someone in the past put a coat of linspeed or some other horrendous concoction on it. There are runs in it, and it really should be removed...I am still deciding on whether to strip it off or just leave it.

    The barrel is perfect internally, and it originally had a 1909 dated Rock Island produced M1907 sling, but it was falling apart.

  18. #18
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    Deputy Dan,

    Thanks for the info. I have been looking at the various codes especially barrel codes but I was not aware of bolt issues thanks again, something else to study up on! The reason why I want a Springfield and not a Remington is because the Springfield (and Rock Island) would be a good representative of what the Marines used during the early 20th century right up to the first battles of WWII. I have nothing against the early Remington 1903 (came on the scene in numbers in 1942?) I just want a Springfield.
    Dan, you have a very nice collection of 1903's, what a history you have there!

    R,
    Beck

  19. #19

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    Quote Originally Posted by irishsteve View Post
    If your shopping 1903-03a3 rifles be sure to check the cut off area on the left side for signs of welds,grinding,mismatched finish.So many drill rifles have been sold,and rebuilt in the last couple of years that you have to be careful not to pay big money for someone elses project rifle.650.00 is the ball park on a 03a3,03"s a bit higher for a nice one.
    Know where I could find some picture references of examples of this?

    I should have been more specific in what I'm looking for. I'm not looking for an original 1903 or anything, a 1903A3 is fine (I don't really know much about these rifles). I have just really loved the 1903 for as long as I have studied history and World War I and II in particular. I just want one I can shoot often and enjoy the history behind it. I know the last gunshow I saw some at they were going for $800 +. I just hope I can find one for a decent price.

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by lthilsdorf View Post
    Know where I could find some picture references of examples of this?

    I should have been more specific in what I'm looking for. I'm not looking for an original 1903 or anything, a 1903A3 is fine (I don't really know much about these rifles). I have just really loved the 1903 for as long as I have studied history and World War I and II in particular. I just want one I can shoot often and enjoy the history behind it. I know the last gunshow I saw some at they were going for $800 +. I just hope I can find one for a decent price.

    I knew what you were looking for thats why I gave the $650.00- $700.00 price range.
    $800.00+ is to much for a mixmaster shooter

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by lthilsdorf View Post
    Know where I could find some picture references of examples of this?

    I should have been more specific in what I'm looking for. I'm not looking for an original 1903 or anything, a 1903A3 is fine (I don't really know much about these rifles). I have just really loved the 1903 for as long as I have studied history and World War I and II in particular. I just want one I can shoot often and enjoy the history behind it. I know the last gunshow I saw some at they were going for $800 +. I just hope I can find one for a decent price.
    Drill rifle weld pics:







    Reclaimed Drill rifle receivers:







    Note the location of the intact welds in the first set of pics... the location of the welds is the same whether it is an M1903 or 03A3. Note the pics of the attempt to remove the welds and clean up the area.

    Here is a clean, non demilitarized receiver pic to compare to the reactivated drill rifle pics above:



    The drill rifles were NEVER intended to serve as firearms after demilitarization, and the heat generated damaged the steel.

  22. #22
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beck View Post
    I have nothing against the early Remington 1903 (came on the scene in numbers in 1942?)
    Production started in '41, bulk of production was in '42, and a few in '43.


  23. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by Deputy Dan View Post
    Drill rifle weld pics:







    Reclaimed Drill rifle receivers:







    Note the location of the intact welds in the first set of pics... the location of the welds is the same whether it is an M1903 or 03A3. Note the pics of the attempt to remove the welds and clean up the area.

    Here is a clean, non demilitarized receiver pic to compare to the reactivated drill rifle pics above:



    The drill rifles were NEVER intended to serve as firearms after demilitarization, and the heat generated damaged the steel.
    Doesn't that just make you sick

    Rob

  24. #24

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    Oh jeez, that's pretty blatant! I wasn't sure if it would be something difficult to spot or not.

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    I don't see alot of attention paid to the 03 Mk 1's. Why not?

    Keith

  26. #26
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    Good question.

    The reason is most likely that almost every Mk I had the components required to accomodate the Pedersen Device removed, and were returned to service rifle condition.

    I have one Mk I that has the Mk I cutoff, Mk I spindle, Mk I sear and an SPL cartouched Mk I stock, produced very close to the start of production of the Mk I. Other than the fact that I needed it to fill a hole in the collection, it doesn't do anything for me... now, if I ever locate a Pedersen Device I might feel a little different about it

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    Quote Originally Posted by lthilsdorf View Post
    Oh jeez, that's pretty blatant! I wasn't sure if it would be something difficult to spot or not.
    Some rifles were welded more significantly than others, but the location of the welds is the same.

  28. #28
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    Might give these guys a call and see if they have anymore. Looks like they just sold a "shooter" 1903a3 for $550.00
    http://www.dupagetrading.com/firearms.html

    If bore and metal was in good condition that was a very good deal.
    They are a good company to deal with. CMP and Dupage does alot of trading back and forth

  29. #29

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    Well, if we're going to play "show and tell"....:D

    1. A very rare 1915 National Match and a 1919 NM (bottom). The 1915 NM, except for some outside barrel wear (the bore is a mirror and has a M.E of about .75!) and scratches on the floorplate, is as close to "new" as I've ever seen on this early of a rifle.



    2. Two more NM rifles -- the top is a 1924 which apparently wasn't actually sold until 1926, modified with a Type B stock and headless firing pin/cocking piece. The bottom one is a 1930 NM.



    3. Two Red Star Remingtons the top is #3,024,801 and the bottom is #3,051,437 (I had to sell a 3rd to finance the 1915 NM).





    4. A low numbered M1903 which was owned by a Montana mining magnate and the subject of a magazine article in The Gun Reports about a year ago.



    5. And lastly, in the "Boy, I wish these rifles were mine"-Department, a small fragment of another gentleman's collection I had the privilege of photographing about a year and a half ago.



    Last edited by Rick the Librarian2; 11-29-2009 at 10:06 AM.

  30. #30
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    Wow, these 03's are a thing of beauty. No wonder most anybody wants at least one! Thanx for sharing guy's.

  31. #31

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    OMG. :eek: Please don't tell me those cases are all full? Greedy (lucky) stiff.

    Rob

  32. #32
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    I've been trying to do my research on the U.S. Rock Island Arsenal Model 1903 gun that I have and I'm having a tough time understanding it completely.

    The serial numbers on it are around the 293000 mark which led me to believe it was made in 1907 as one of the originals... but I'm not 100%.

    All of the pictures that are listed above this post are the 1903's... but the gun I have has a different "site" on it. My site is located further back on the gun which doing my research meant it's a 1903A.

    Markings on the Gun say:
    U.S. Rock Island Arsenal
    Model 1903
    293###

    The markings on the barrel say:
    S A
    12 - 32

    Can someone help me out with this? Should I post pictures?

    Thanks in advance.

  33. #33
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    1907 wouldnt be right for a rock island that high in number. It has a springfield barrel on it, it might be one they finished when RI handed over all their parts and what not. Which site is located further back, if you mean the rear one then it sounds as if somebody messed with it. reckon pictures would be your best bet.
    Last edited by CptEnglehorn; 12-01-2009 at 11:49 PM.
    "Hows Jesus Look To You Now Bob"

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    Ok here are some photos of the gun I have. Hopefully you guys can help me out.

    Also let me know if you want pictures of anything else on the gun.

    Thanks,

    Blake

  35. #35
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    Someone took off the original rear site, drilled the reciever bridge and a put on a peep sight. Just as a guess from the barrel date id say its one of the guns finished at Springfield. Everything else seems to be alright with it, stock might be a little sanded, could be just the pictures.
    "Hows Jesus Look To You Now Bob"

  36. #36
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    blakefsu, your rifle's receiver dates from June, 1918 and was produced from double heat treated carbon steel. It would originally have been completed as a rifle at Rock Island Arsenal, and would have been fitted with a RIA barrel and all RIA components. The rifle was rebuilt at Springfield Armory at least once.

    The serial number is too low to be one of the RIA receivers in the shipment of receivers, partially completed receivers and forged billets sent to Springfield Armory in 1926.

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