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Discussion Starter #1
Does anyone know where to get a good manual for taking apart the 1903 and putting it back together?

That and one that explains how to use and set up the sights, magazine cut off. Basically a user manual that walks you through these steps and any others.

Thanks!

BTW, my 1903 is a Springfield from 1922. It's a great shooter and I want to be able to take it all the way apart to clean it properly.
 

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Sometimes manuals can be found on line. It pays to know what you are looking for. During WW1 manuals were hard cover and the one for the M1903 was simply called No.1928, first published in March 1904 and revised five time and finally in January 1917. During WWII there was probably a Field manual (I can't find a copy.) but the Tech Manual was TM 9-1270 May 19, 1942. Believe it or not the Army published the last one TM 9-1005-205-12 in December 1970 with change one in April 1973. That manual was for the M1903A4 Sniper Rifle only. If you can find a copy it will tell you how to take it apart.
 

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As far as the magazine cutoff the theory was simple. With the cutoff in the off position rounds would not feed from the magazine as the bolt could not be drawn back far enough to pick up a cartridge. Then you had to load it single rounds at a time and save the rounds in the magazine until the enemy got real close when you would switch to the on position. This concept was not adopted by most armies as it was useful only in very specific situations if even then. It had been carried over from the Krag rifle and apparently at that time the army was not real sure about those new repeater rifles. Maybe they were afraid the soldiers would waste ammo. I have never heard of a single soldier who actually used that single shot tactic.

The main use of the cutoff lever on the M1903 rifles was when it was set halfway between on and off the bolt could be withdrawn from the rifle. The process was to cock the bolt and set the safety in the upright position between on and off. Set the cutoff to the middle position and pull the bolt out . Then press the little button on the side ( bolt sleeve lock) of the bolt sleeve and unscrew the sleeve I won't go into the disassembly of the firing pin but you get the general idea.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I have a manual to take the rifle down but it's so minimalistic that it leaves you wondering who thought it was good.

It's one of those off the shelf yellow manuals, it shows you how parts come off but not it great detail. I would like one that shows you and has tips, pictures...

I mean, it's not like the rifles been around for over a hundred years! You'd think that someone would've come out with one in say the last couple of years being that it's so new.:rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I found a 9-1270 TM on eBay and placed an order. I would rather have a TM that actually shows you stuff, has part numbers/names.

When I get it and start the breakdown procedure, I'm going to take a lot of pics. More so just to document the rifle as I doubt it's been apart since it was made! It still has the original 1922 barrel on it.

The serial number dates it to 1922, not sure how to check the stock. It does look period correct other then the stippling someone did on it. It's a small area and actually looks good so I'm not sweating that.

Would like to see what proof marks are on it under the stock. I wish I could find a barrel from 1922, that way if I decide to swap it, it's the same year. Ah, it's nice to be a dreamer!
 

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Do you have FM23-10 BASIC FIELD MANUAL, US RIFLE CALIBER .30, M1903, 30 SEPT 1943.


Edit- here is a digital copy of the 1940 manual. I have the 1943 manual if you have an interest.

https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&sou...ebyDoE&usg=AFQjCNF52BMO49BKWVBYUmQOSVDfU-YG5g
I was also interested and thought it would be neat to have a copy so I ran it on my printer not realizing that it was over 220 pages. Fortunately I have a printer that does both sides of the paper. I have always had an interest in the 03. I have four of them not counting 03A3s. Interestingly my father was in the National Guard in the 1930s and of course used the 03. He got out of the Guard after six years before WWII but that did not stop him from getting drafted in 1943. He claimed that he never saw an M1 rifle the entire time he was in the Army. Basic training was conducted with the M1903 (not 03A3 at that time). After Basic he was briefly assigned to medic training and was pulled out of that when they discovered he had been a court reporter in civilian life and the Army need all of them it could get as it only had a handful. Next thing he knew he was on a ship headed for Asia. He ended up in the theater headquarters of the China Burma India theater in New Delhi India. There he didn't get to shoot much but he did participate in a rifle match once. All conducted with 03 Springfields of course.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Thanks guys for the extra info and TM numbers. I'll try to post some pics as I break it down and time permits.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Alright guys here comes a few questions and I know I'm not going to like the answers.

I haven't started taking the rifle apart yet but here's an overall view just looking at the rifle.

The rifle is stamped with the usual Springfield Armory model 1903 on the receiver. Serial number is 1246xxx which would make It's born year 1922. The barrel has SA 4-22 on it to match the serial number year.

Here comes the part that I know is going to be bad. The stock has an "R" stamped on it under the cut off switch. It also has IDALI stamped on it near the cut off switch. So I'm guessing that means it's a Remington stock?

The bayonet lug has an "H" stamped on it, would this be HRA? The barrel band has a "U" stamped on it, have no idea what that means. The only markings on the bolt is on the top of the handle. One is a 3 and the other that's above the 3 I thought was a 1 but looks more like an apostrophe?

The front sight cover is stamped with an"R" on one side and US with flaming bomb on the other. So this would also mean it's a Remington part.

So, if I want it back to stock I'm going to have to replace some parts! Wasn't looking to replace the stock but if it is a Remington part, which it probably is, it'll have to be changed.

Well, let me know what you guys know or think about the parts that I've listed. Looks like eBay and Gun Broker are going to be my parts store.
 

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Springfield Armory stamped the right side of their barrel bands with a U from at least the civil war/war of northern agression. So don't sweat that. The H on the bayonet lug is not HRA. ThT would be an SA inspector. Again, don't sweat it.

Brophey's book on the '03 has been considered the '03 collectors bible for decades. Harrison has a nice book as well as North Cape Publishing's For Collectors Only. Buy them all! No real coector relies on one source
 

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Actually the "H" is for hardened or heat treated ( forget which ) .
The "U" stands for up . With the rifle standing on it's butt , if the "U" is up-side-down , so is the band .
The "IDALI" is most likely a DAL stamp in a box and the connecting upper and lower lines are faint . Good , original stock from post WW1 till into the '30s IIRC.
The sight protector is Remington.
HTH , Chris
 

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Chris......I've heard the bit about U being for up. I have a little trouble with that one but only on a personal level. But that's a great call on the cartouche! I couldn't figure it out.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks guys for the help, the 1903 site offered a lot of help! They answered almost all the questions about the rifle.

The "U" on the barrel band has to have the tips or horns of the U pointing towards the muzzle to be on correctly.

The "H" stands for hardened on the bayonet lug/front band.

What I thought was IDALI was DAL inside of a box. The stock in that area has been stippled and part of the box was removed.

The "R" under the cut off switch is more then likely an inspectors mark. Doesn't stand for Remington but it's a mark that's unknown, so I'm sending them some pics.

I have a Springfield sight cover inbound, so if anyone needs a Remington one, I have an extra.:cool:

Thanks again for all the help!

50

One last thing, there's what I think is a cartouche barely readable. It looks like teeth on a gear with AZ inside of it???
 

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Discussion Starter #18
I wish I would have started this when I originally got the rifle! The guys on the 1903 board are awesome and know their rifles.

It looks like my rifle might be a National Match rifle. After giving them the serial number and numbers off the barrel and other parts, looks like it could be.

Great, now I'm going to have to buy another as I don't think I should shoot this one!:jedicrying:
 

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I'm a little hazy on NM 1903's. Is that the one with the "star gauged" barrel with the star stamp at the muzzle? Also, does it have the stippled or checkered buttplate?
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Mine has an asterisk on the muzzle and the number/letter combo on the barrel, makes mine a star gauged barrel.
 
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