SOLD FOR: $1151
Make: Springfield Armory
Serial Number: 1023660
Year of Manufacture: 1918 (page 373 of Joe Poyer’s book, The M1903 Springfield Rifle and its Variations, 3rd Edition)
Barrel Date: May, 1932
Caliber: .30-06 Springfield
Action Type: Bolt Action, Internal Magazine
Markings: The top of the receiver is marked “U.S. / SPRINGFIELD / ARMORY / MODEL 1903 / 1023660”. The top of the barrel is marked “S A / flaming bomb / 5 – 32” . The safety is marked “SAFE READY” and the magazine cutoff is marked “ON OFF”. The top of the bolt handle is marked “N.S.” for Nickel Steel and the bottom is marked “F”. The barrel band is marked “U”. The bayonet lug is marked “H”. The scallop for the magazine cutoff is marked “S” for Springfield.
Barrel Length: Approximately 24 Inches
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a pinned blade atop a raised base and under protective hood. The thick notched blade is a replacement. The rear sight is a “U” notched blade attached to a fully adjustable sight ladder marked from “3-27”. When flipped up separate notches and an aperture on the ladder can be used for sighting.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The two piece hardwood stock has a straight grip, nosecap with bayonet lug, stacking loop, barrel band, 2 sling loops, 2 through bolts and a metal buttplate with hinged door for storage. The buttplate shows scrapes along the edges. The wood shows numerous scrapes, scratches and compression marks. Most of the marks are small but some have damaged small portions of the surface wood. These marks have been oiled. The LOP measures 13 1/8 inches from the front of the trigger to the back of the buttplate. The stock rates in about Very Good Plus overall condition.
Type of Finish: Parkerized
Finish Originality: Original to Rebuild
Bore Condition: The muzzle is light gray. The grooves are semi bright. The rifling is deep. There is frosting and erosion in the grooves near the muzzle. There is intermittent light erosion in the remaining grooves. The bore shows an M.E. of 0.5.
Overall Condition: This rifle retains about 85% of its metal finish. The metal shows scattered scrapes and small scratches. The font sight and bottom metal shows thinning and discoloration from oxidation. The bolt and right side of the receiver show operational wear. Some of the screw heads show heavy use. The markings are well defined. Overall, this rifle rates in about Very Good Plus condition.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. We did not fire this rifle. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance requirements.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: The rifle has an unmarked leather sling attached and a front sight protector installed.
Our Assessment: When the US Army was looking for a rifle design to replace the 1898 Krag rifle, they looked directly at the Spanish Model 1893 Mauser. This was due to the fact that the performance of the Model 1893 Mauser was far superior than that of the 1898 Krag during the Spanish-American War. The Model 1903 is basically a redesigned Mauser clone. A U.S. Patent Court eventually found that the U.S. Army had violated Mauser’s patents and required the U.S. Army to pay the German Mauser manufacturers patent royalties. Payments were stopped once WWI started. The 1903 has a strong reliable action that served the Army for over thirty years in two world wars.
This Springfield Armory 1903 was made back in 1918 so it was around for all of WWII and was probably around for the end of WWI. We don’t know its service history but it was most likely put to good use on or near a battlefield. The rifle has been rebuilt. It was refinished when it was rebuilt so it looks pretty good for a 104 year old military service rifle. It will add to your Military collection. Good luck.