1903 Springfield Rifle query on design

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1903 Springfield Rifle query on design

Post by Linkagain » 03 Aug 2021 16:54

Query about the 03 Springfield was it a comprise from two competing designs?

the SMLE Lee Enfield advantage over the Mauser 98k of 10 round magaizne vs 5 round magazine

The Mauser 98K advantage over the SMLE Lee Enfield of a stronger bolt action...

Did the Springfield modeled after the SMLE for Magazine capicity and the Mauder 98K for Bolt action???

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Re: 1903 Springfield Rifle query on design

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 03 Aug 2021 23:56

Combat experience in the Philippines insurrection led to a desire for larger capacity magazines. But I doubt it was the sole imperative in this.

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Takao
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Re: 1903 Springfield Rifle query on design

Post by Takao » 04 Aug 2021 01:38

Uh...I thought the 1903 had a 5 round magazine. With some having a capacity of 5x5-round stripper clips(25 rounds).

The Springfield 1903 is largely based on the Mauser 1893(many of these superior rifles were captured in the Spanish-American War).

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Re: 1903 Springfield Rifle query on design

Post by ROLAND1369 » 04 Aug 2021 03:15

The M 1903 Springfield has a magazine capacity of 5 rounds. By using the cutout switch the bolt is not allowed to travel to the rear far enough to pick up a round from the Magazine. This allows a single round to be inserted while retaining the 5 in the magazine. This gives a total of 6 available rounds without reloading. It also allows the soldier to fire single slower single shots while holding a full magazine in reserve for emergencies. The larger capacity magazines were trialed for Air combat and trench warfare in WW I but were not adopted Post WW I.

Delta Tank
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Re: 1903 Springfield Rifle query on design

Post by Delta Tank » 07 Aug 2021 16:00

Read this, it is not definitive but we copied several features from the Mauser design and we had to pay them for patent? Infringement.

https://www.milsurps.com/showthread.php ... 9ebf6a2557

Mike

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Re: 1903 Springfield Rifle query on design

Post by Carl Schwamberger » 07 Aug 2021 18:13

Ñice late 19th Century rifle designs.

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Re: 1903 Springfield Rifle query on design

Post by Delta Tank » 07 Aug 2021 21:25

Carl Schwamberger wrote:
07 Aug 2021 18:13
Ñice late 19th Century rifle designs.
My Dad thought the 03 Springfield was the greatest bolt action rifle ever built. I have an 03 and two 03A3s as issued and they shoot way better than I can hold them. I also have a K98k, an Enfield Number 4 mark 1.Once at the range another shooter stated “the Germans made a hunting rifle, the Americans made a target rifle and the British made a battle rifle”. All three of those rifles shoot great but, the sights on the British Enfield are the best, the K98k comes in second and the 03 and 03A3 come in last. The sights on the 03 are just too fine which makes them hard to see in less than optimum light conditions.

Mike

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Dwight Pruitt
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Re: 1903 Springfield Rifle query on design

Post by Dwight Pruitt » 08 Aug 2021 23:13

I prefer the M1917.

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Re: 1903 Springfield Rifle query on design

Post by paulrward » 09 Aug 2021 02:28

Hello All ;

Mr. Dwight Pruitt stated ;
I prefer the M1917.
Having twice been at a shooting range when an M1917 'Enfield' exploded in the
face of it's user, I have been very leery of the American Enfield for many years.

To Mr. Delta Tank, Mr. Schwamberger, Mr ROLAND1369, and Mr. Takao; the following might be of
interest:

Following the events of the Spanish American War, where U.S. Forces quickly discovered that their
M1896 and M1873 Rifles were outclassed by the 7mm Spanish Mauser, the U.S. Army immediately
went to work on a new rifle. The Mauser fired a much faster bullet than the 1896 30-40 Krag, to
the point that the U.S. Troops referred to it as " the Spanish Hornet " and it was in this war that
the expression was coined, " You never hear the one that gets you...."

The U.S. started with a modification of the 1892 Mauser ( Rifle No. 5 ) that had participated in the
1892 tests that had standardized on the Krag, and updated it to a more powerful cartridge. This
Experimental M1900 with it's single stack magazine proved problematic, and was quickly set aside.

The Springfield Arsenal next took the best elements of the 1893 Mauser and the 1896 Springfield Krag,
and combined them into a 30" barreled rifle in a new cartridge called 30-01 Rimless. This rifle was
fitted with a rod bayonet, sights from a Krag, and about 1000 were made in anticipation of production
being started. However, after tests, the Army determined that it would be more cost effective to
eliminate the 30" barreled Rifle and the 22" barreled Cavalry Carbine, and instead simply make a
standard 24" barreled Rifle.

This was standardized in 1903 as the Model 1903 Rifle, with Rod Bayonet, in caliber 30-03, a slightly
increased capacity cartridge. It was quickly found that the new Rod Bayonet was, in the words of
Theodore Roosevelt, " ... about as poor an invention as I ever saw...." , and what was worse, the effort
to increase the muzzle velocity with a round nosed bullet had resulted in a cartridge that burned so
hot it was eroding out the barrels within the first thousand rounds.

The Rifle was redesigned to take a new, Spitzer Pointed Cartridge, requiring the existing rifles to be
returned to the Armory to have the barrels set back and be re chambered, and while this was being
done, the stocks were re designed to take a knife bayonet similar to the Krag Bayonet, but shorter.

The result was the now legendary M1903 Springfield in 30-06, which served in two World Wars, Korea,
VietNam, and Desert Storm, a service life of over 80 years. They fought at the Meuse-Argonne,
Guadalcanal, Normandy, Khe San, and Kuwait.

Not bad for a
Ñice late 19th Century rifle designs.
I append a JPEG for reference

Respectfully ;

Paul R. Ward

P.S. - I am the proud owner of a Star Gauged National Match M1903 A1 which I
inherited - With it, at the old Hollister Range in Northern California, I once
shot a ' Possible ' - which is ten consecutive shots into a 10 inch diameter circle.

At One Thousand Yards.



Springfield Rifle Development.jpg
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Linkagain
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Re: 1903 Springfield Rifle query on design

Post by Linkagain » 12 Aug 2021 21:56

Thanks for the attachment!!!

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Re: 1903 Springfield Rifle query on design

Post by LineDoggie » 22 Aug 2021 01:40

paulrward wrote:
09 Aug 2021 02:28
and Desert Storm, Kuwait.







Kuwait and Desert Storm? What source says this?
"There are two kinds of people who are staying on this beach: those who are dead and those who are going to die. Now let’s get the hell out of here".
Col. George Taylor, 16th Infantry Regiment, Omaha Beach

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Re: 1903 Springfield Rifle query on design

Post by paulrward » 25 Aug 2021 05:55

Hello All ;

Mr. LineDoggie asked :
Kuwait and Desert Storm? What source says this?

Years ago, while still living in Northern California, I spent many a happy hour attending
local gun shows in San Jose, Pleasanton, San Mateo, and the San Francisco Cow Palace.
One of the 'fixtures' at most of the larger gun shows in Northern CA was a fellow named
'Doc' Ross, a retired U.S. Navy UDT diver ( Korea ) who ran a sort of omnibus business
called " The Old Benicia Arsenal '. He bought and sold gun parts, restored classic military
and Winchester lever actions, and his tables at the gun shows were lined with some of the
highest grade ( and highest priced ) collector grade U.S. Military firearms you would ever
want to see, along with classic cowboy rifles, Wells Fargo Shotguns, and even Colt 1911s
that were rare and extremely collectible.

He and I hit it off, especially when we found out that my father was also a friend of his,
they both being involved in helping Frank Schelling restore his Curtiss Jenny. Doc Ross
also collected, bought,and sold antique and rare diving equipment, and he even owned
his own decompression chamber ! He was also involved in helping to locate and raise
sunken WW2 aircraft that were in lakes and rivers, and he was involved in several of
the lawsuits that people who had raised sunken aircraft and then had them stolen from
them by the U.S. Government filed to get their property back.

For over two decades, when you walked into one of the Cow Palace Gun Shows, the first
tables you saw were Doc Ross's tables - and so the first place I would stop to talk was
with him. He was inevitably holding court with a number of gun collectors, buyers, and
sellers, and on one occasion, in November of 1993, when I came in, he was talking to a
guy who, based on his haircut and mannerisms, was obviously military. The fellow was
in his 20s, in good shape, and he and Doc were discussing several of Doc's rifles, and I
listened in.

The fellow was telling Doc Ross that his Marine Unit had been issued a number of Winchester
Model 70's and M1903 Springfields immediately prior to deploying to Saudi Arabia in late
1990- He stated that, at the last minute, some officer in his Battalion had gotten a hair up
his third point of contact, and decided that the troops under his command needed something
that had a longer range than an M-16 with iron sights, seeing as how they were going to be
fighting in the wide open spaces of the Middle East. According to this fellow, armories were
looked through, boxes were opened, things dug up, and, within a few days, they had located
about two dozen Korean War / VietNam War Sniper Rifles that had been put in storage and
essentially forgotten about for years. This Marine said that there was about an even mix of
Winchester 70s and M1903s.

He stated that they had a mixture of scopes, the majority of them being old fashioned Unertls
that ranged from 8 to 14 power, and had external adjustments for drift and elevation. He said
the Winchester 70s were on civilian walnut stocks, and the M1903s were on the old military
stocks. These were full length stocks, but he stated that they cut them down forward of the
sling band at the same time they somewhat hastily bedded the rifles with fiberglass.

The rifles were NOT, according to him, used for sniping, nor were the Marines they were issued
to designated snipers - they simply were the Marines whose sergeants stated were the best of
the ' expert ' shooters in the various platoons, and who were offered the option of carrying the
bolt action scoped rifles instead of their M-16. The idea was, if the platoon came under fire
from long range, rather than just everyone spraying and praying, they would have a few guns
that could fire back in the 400 to 600 meter ranges.

These ' experts ' each had a few days to familiarize themselves with their rifles - the favored
rifle was the M70, the M1903 was considered a ' second best ' ( The Marine stated that HE had
been issued one of the M1903s, but another Marine traded him his Winchester 70 for it ) and
they spent some hours on the range - and then all hell broke loose ! Both the Win. 70s and the
M1903s were in 30.06- NOT .308 !

Which meant that, for about two days, sergeants and 2nd Lts. were scouring the local gun
shops, sporting goods stores, and Kmarts for any boxes of 30.06 they could find ! The Marine
stated that the officers and sergeants were paying for the ammunition out of their own pockets.
In the end, each ' Expert ' Rifleman deployed with his scoped rifle in a canvas case and two 50
caliber ammo cans packed with 20 round boxes of Winchester, Remington, Federal, whatever
they could scrounge up in that brief time.

Then they got to the SandBox, and one of the officers noticed that some of the ammo was....
HOLLOWPOINTS ! Big No-No! There was a pow-wow among the officers, and this
Marine said that, the final decision was, if one of the Marines shot any of the enemy with a
Hollow Point, he was to make sure he killed him really dead !

This Marine stated he carried his Winchester 70 all through Desert Storm, but when they came
back all the scoped rifles were left behind. This was why he was talking to Doc Ross, as he
was interested in getting another Winchester 70 like he had carried. The prices, however,
were a bit daunting - especially for one fitted with a VERY expensive antique Unertl scope.
Doc Ross encouraged him to look around at all the tables, and see if he could find a pre-1964
Winchester 70, and that Doc Ross would see if he could find him a scope and a set of the correct
rings and mounting blocks for it at a reasonable price. ( I am sure that Doc Ross had everything
in his vast inventory of parts, and that he was doing this as a favor to a recently returned Vet )

And that is it- The Marine did NOT say that HE used an M1903, merely that he had posessed one
stateside, traded it for a Winchester 70, but seemed sure that the M1903s went to Saudi, and
then to Kuwait City in the Desert Storm blitz. And that they did not come back.....

Hope this is of some use to you - I would be interested if you can find out what Marine unit
the guy served in - surely there must be some others who remember this happening.

Respectfully :

Paul R. Ward
USMC sniper rifles kuwait.jpg
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Re: 1903 Springfield Rifle query on design

Post by LineDoggie » 25 Aug 2021 20:48

Sounds like a Sea story, when M40's/M24's were issue and M14/M21's available. No one I ever served with or talked to has mentioned using a M1903A1 Sniper rig during DS/DS

Nor a single image has come forward of their use and god knows Joe loves pictures with weapons

and why use an ancient Unertl when far better optics were in inventory
"There are two kinds of people who are staying on this beach: those who are dead and those who are going to die. Now let’s get the hell out of here".
Col. George Taylor, 16th Infantry Regiment, Omaha Beach

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Re: 1903 Springfield Rifle query on design

Post by paulrward » 26 Aug 2021 05:22

Hello All ;

Mr. LineDoggie stated
Sounds like a Sea story, when M40's/M24's were issue and M14/M21's available. No one
I ever served with or talked to has mentioned using a M1903A1 Sniper rig during DS/DS
I will handle this one item at a time:

1. " When M40's/M24's were issue...."

This was apparently NOT done officially, it was done by a Battalion commander and his staff, and
was done at the last minute prior to deployment. In other words, they didn't have time to get
' standard issue ' - they made some phone calls, some guys looked through warehouses, and they
took what they could find. Which was, apparently, VietNam War stored Winchester M70s with
Unertl and other scopes, and Korean War vintage M1903A1s with Unertls and possibly M84s ( or
even possibly Lyman Alaskans ! )

The fact that the M1903s were still on their original full length stocks indicates that they were
probably Korean War weapons that had been cosmolined and stored. And, as for
..an ancient Unertl when far better optics were in inventory..
To get better optics on them, you would have had to

1. have to requisition the optics from Supply,
2. have to get them ordered from the Vendor,
3. have them shipped in, along with the mounts compatible with Winchester M70s and
Springfield M1903s,
4. have them fitted by armorers, who may or may not be familiar with this sort of
precision work
5. issue them to the relevant men

All of the above requires a Shitload of Paperwork, and a lot of Time, and if one Dimwitted Doggie up
the Line decided to sit on the requisition, because Sniper Rifles weren't on your T.O.& E., you were
screwed. The Battalion Commander was apparently smarter than that, going outside the normal
chain of command to get something done. And, he and his staff, and his men, made do with what
they had. VietNam War and Korean War vintage castoffs that no one would miss if they turned
up missing in next year's inventory......
No one I ever served with or talked to has mentioned using a
M1903A1 Sniper rig during DS/DS

2. They were NOT used for Sniping - merely for longer range fire than could be attained by an
iron sighted M16 'Poodle Shooter' . So, you may have talked to Marine Scout Snipers, but these
were NOT USED by Scout Snipers, so they would not have any knowledge of them. In addition,
the Marine who spoke to us mentioned a figure of about two dozen weapons - which means,
one rifle per squad, or three rifles per platoon, or nine rifles per company, or 27 rifles in the
entire battalion - and it was confined to ONE battalion. According to many sources, there were
over 90,000 U.S. Marines deployed in the Gulf in Desert Storm.

I am certain, Mr. LineDoggie. that you have had a chance to speak to every one of them.....



Just for an interesting Factoid : The first Winchester M70s sent to VietNam were taken from
Camp Pendleton - Now, why would Camp Pendleton have M70 Sniper Rifles with Unertl Scopes
in the mid 1960s, when there were ZERO Snipers in the Marine Corps ?

The answer is, a bunch of Marine Officers at Pendleton like to hunt Mule Deer, which were
abundant on the grounds of the Base. So, they arranged with the Special Services to order a lot
of Winchester M70s, which had been purchased with government funds for use as Marksmanship
and competition rifles at the National Matches, and had them sent to Pendleton. ( This stuff
doesn't get looked at much if your C.O. is in on the deal ) They had them fitted with Unertls
that had been sitting in their Micarta Cans since Korea. And off they went to kill Bambi, his
Mother, his Father, and a bunch of his cousins. They had been using them during the 1950s,
and when USMC Captain Edward Land Jr. began his Sniper Course in VietNam, they scrounged
up about a dozen of these rifles, and got them sent to S E Asia. In some cases, they were
re scoped with scopes, rings, and mounts obtained from the base PX on Guam.

And they formed the basis for what is now arguably the finest corps of Snipers in the World.

Respectfully :

Paul R. Ward
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Re: 1903 Springfield Rifle query on design

Post by Linkagain » 26 Aug 2021 12:00

Not suprized of 50 year old rifles taken out of storage for use in war..I remember reading in a WWII history that the OSS Was arming a Asian tribe to be guerilla against the Japanese,,the guerrillas wanted shotguns [Which they were familier with) When the OSS officer in charge of arming them was aske d why he needed shotguns he sarcastically replied to send him Springfield Muzzle Loaders from the US Cvil War Instead..to his suprise 80 years after the "Late War" a bunch of 1860s Springfield were located in a armory still in packing greese--the cosmoline was removed the guns ships and 80 years after the late unpleasentes of 1861-1865 these guns finally helped defend the Union (and the South as well) Who knows they probably still are in use..... :lol: :lol: :lol: :roll: :wink: :thumbsup:

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