View Full Version : Trying to determine if 1903 is aerial rifle?

May 5, 2012, 08:18 AM
Trying to determine if the 1903 that I inherited from my late father is just an example of a Mil-Surp rifle that has the stock cut down, or if it is possibly the odd-looking aerial observer Springfield that was fielded in small numbers. The elongated fixed magazine is absent from it, but most of the other details are identical to the description and photos that appeared in the Flayderman Blue Book of Gun Values describing this rifle. It's likely a rifle that had the stocks cut down for hunting use but the measurements and dimension all match up, so I'm trying to find out. Rifle is a Rock Island Arsenal mode. I'll post photos for anyone that might be interested or if someone can make a determination.

Thanks in advance.:)

May 6, 2012, 07:56 AM
Serial number well really help.

The Air Service rifle was off a 1917-18 rust blued receiver. 25 round detachable mag. Stocks are special nit just a cut down 03 stock.

There are many other minor details that make up a AS 03. Odds are several million to one that it is a sporterized 03.

James K
May 6, 2012, 04:08 PM
Other than the stock and handguard the main differences are that the Air Service rifle had a special fixed rear sight, without the normal leaf, a band without a screw, and a short stock but without any hole in the front end. The stock is 29 inches long, the handguard 5 3/4 inches.

There have been many fakes made; most use BAR magazines and have the magazine well altered to accept them. The original magazine did not fit up into the rifle, it replaced the standard floorplate.


May 6, 2012, 06:30 PM