View Full Version : 1903-A3 Springfield

Uncle Buck
February 16, 2014, 02:10 PM
I finally got around to repairing the extractor on the rifle I picked up in trade.

Got her cleaned up. It had sticky nasty old yellow-brown grease all over the inside of it. ( Cosmoline?) I wonder if the amount of grease inside the rifle contributed to the extractor breaking. It had been used for many years as a ceremonial gun for military funerals, firing only blanks.

Anyway, nice rifle, but I want to make sure I did not miss something in my research.

It was made by Smith-Corona Serial number 362XXXX. At the end of the barrel is the stamp 12-42 and what looks like the Army Ordinance Bomb with a flame inside of it.

I am under the impression that this rifle will fire the standard 30-06 off the shelf load. Is this a true?

Also, Any idea what it might be worth?

February 16, 2014, 03:43 PM

Any 03-A3, with good headspace, should be able to safely fire any commercial .30-06 ammo, and then some.

Complete 03-A3's, in excellent original-condition, have long been banging on the $1,000 door (if not beyond, by now - IDK) - due, no doubt, because so many have been sporterized over the years.


February 16, 2014, 04:07 PM
Saw a Remington last year for $800, excellent condition. I have a mint un-fired one so I passed, had it been a Smith I would have jumped on it. Depends on condition like everything else. If it is minty I would save it and buy a shooter.

Uncle Buck
February 16, 2014, 04:30 PM
Thanks guys. I know when-ever I have a question about a firearm, I can count on you guys to come through... Now if I could just find someone willing to give me the winning powerball numbers.

This is not mint, but nice. Looks sorta like I would expect one to look after 70 years. The stock is very dark, due to age I am guessing. I am debating whether to clean it up or just smile every time my dumb-butted brother sees me shoot it.

I had no idea the think could be worth even close to that much. I had a sporterized version of one a few years ago and traded it off.

What is/was the purpose of the weep hole next to the chamber?

Is a six groove barrel worth more than the four two grooved barrels?

James K
February 16, 2014, 04:42 PM
The hole is for gas escape in case of failure of the case head or gas leakage at the primer. Those things don't happen often but if they do the hole allows gas to escape to the open air instead of damaging the rifle.


February 16, 2014, 08:05 PM
An original six-groove barreled Smith Corona 03A3 is relatively rare.

The barrels were made by Savage. Around 4,000 made that way if my memory is right. My Father has an S-C with the six groove barrel.

Before you 'clean up' the stock, could you take some photos of it and post them here?

February 17, 2014, 02:13 PM

I wouldn't recommend "cleaning" the stock - "patina" pays........... :p


February 17, 2014, 07:15 PM
I agree. Depends on what he means by "clean". Into the dishwasher? Oh no no no, a thousand times no.

Uncle Buck
February 18, 2014, 09:05 AM
Here is a picture of it. I love this gun and NO, I will not be running it through the dishwasher. I appreciate the replies. Sorry about the picture, I have a heck of a time loading picts.

Mike Irwin
February 18, 2014, 12:09 PM
Looks exactly like my Smith-Corona. Except mine has had the front of the military stock amputated and the handguard removed. I've been trying to find a correct stock but they are PRICEY!!!

February 18, 2014, 12:17 PM
Nice rifle!

Mike,I built my 1903A4 clone from a receiver.I tried a Sarco stock,but it had a warp problem.I ended up going with a Northridge stock.It was a very nice,NOS arsenal stock.Proper grain layout,hard,dense.Cost?Near $300.No regret.A "C" stock,btw.

Mike Irwin
February 18, 2014, 12:29 PM

That's pretty much what I've been seeing for original wood.

I'll go original before I go replacement.