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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My father in law was telling me about this Mauser rifle he inherited from his late uncle. I wanted to see it because he didn't know exactly what it was. We went to the range to shoot and he pulls out the rifle and it was hard to tell what it was at first because the receiver had been drilled and tapped and the barrel was shiney.
Just barely cover up by one of the scope rings you can read "US", below it I saw the last two letter "on". Then it clicked that this was a US Remington rifle. I looked some more and saw a3 on the other side of the scope ring. I told him that he has a 1903a3 made by Remington probably built during WWII. It was wearing a sporter stock with s butt pad that was hard as a rock. Barrel had been replaced too with a blued slim profile barrel with the front site removed.

After talking awhile I ended up with the rifle in a trade. I would like to kinda restore the rifle. Meaning get a correct barrel, stock and hardware back on this gun.

Who still rebarrells these dinosaurs? And is it worth it?
 

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Unfortunately as a collector piece it has been ruined by drilling and tapping. If you want it to look correct there are plenty of resources out there, CMP being one.
 

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What kind of base? One piece or 2 piece bases? Might make a good donor for a faux 1903A4 build. Even that is a stretch as you would need a
C Stock ~$200
Criterion barrel~$200
Barrel bands, swivels, buttplate ~$120
Correct type scope~$100-300
Gunsmith~$100+

This all would be with the receiver being D&T with a single piece scope base. The problem with restoration now is the small parts. They use to be cheap and deep but they are not cheap anymore unless you have a special source.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
The main thing im concerned is getting the barrel swapped out after that i can just piece it together as i go. I was thinking that Faux WWII sniper kinda thing even though it wouldnt be correct with it being drilled, but to bring back the rest of it to WWII status in a C stock and just have a modern scope on her. I'm not looking to sell just want something I would like.

Then again if its going to cost me as much as a correct 1903a3 then screw it, the rifle as is bangs steel pretty good out to 300.
 

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Is it worth it? Financially, no... As a fun project, yes. XFire's suggestions are good.

Once drilled and tapped they really loose collector value. They can still be a really great sporting rifle. Do some interweb research on Griffin and Howe 1903. You might also search on the late Michael Petrov who researched and documented early 20th century gunsmiths.

I'm personally working (slowly) on one that had a toasted barrel. I had it re-bored to .35 Whelen. It will end up with a classic shaped stock and a vintage 1947 Leupold Plainsman scope.
 

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I think you have to decide for yourself what you are willing to put into it. You may spend more money restoring than you could buy one for, and you may have to live with the tapped holes in the receiver, but it is still a gun handed down in the family. That is a value that you can't pay for. Even the holes can be repaired. I have a gunsmith/welder who welds up pitted antique guns and you can't tell.

If you are patient, there are still original barrels out there, sometimes in NOS condition. Mostly two-groove, but those shoot just as well as the earlier four-groove ones, if less "collectible." You can find lots of parts for these around, so it is a very realistic prospect. It's just a question of how much you are willing to spend.
 

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The main thing im concerned is getting the barrel swapped out after that i can just piece it together as i go. I was thinking that Faux WWII sniper kinda thing even though it wouldnt be correct with it being drilled, but to bring back the rest of it to WWII status in a C stock and just have a modern scope on her. I'm not looking to sell just want something I would like.

Then again if its going to cost me as much as a correct 1903a3 then screw it, the rifle as is bangs steel pretty good out to 300.
My point exactly bro, shoot it till it quits. Then we will figure out how to get parts.
 

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Pictures of the drilling and the rest would help us help you!
 

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Do you have any pictures? Does it look like a professional job or a hobbie job sporter?
The 1903 and 1917 was the base for many a fine custom rifles. I have a WA Sukalle built 1903 that I wouldn't change
I have restored around 20 1903s and A3 in the past 10 years. I don't consider myself an expert but know enough to be dangerous. I use to buy any part I could find at gun shows if they were reasonably priced, which seems to be an oxymoron. Parts are drying up. I haven't found any small parts at gun shows for almost 3 years now. The online suppliers want a fortune for small parts and half of them are reproductions.

The rifle I use in vintage matches is a Smith and Corona with a D&Tablet receiver. The holes don't bother me when shooting and I don't worry about shooting out the barrel. When it is time I will rebarrel with a criterion and keep shooting.
 

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A faux A4 is a good suggestion. I have gone that route with very nice results at a most reasonable cost. The local pawn shop has been a good supplier of O3/A3s. Find 'em, fix 'em and shoot the s***t out of them, great fun to rehab and even more fun on the range.
 
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Lurp, How does it shoot? I would leave the barrel if its a good shooter. Stocks can be found on gunbroker or ebay as well as the handguards cheap. As far a stock hardware goes sarco has the best deal at 50$ http://www.e-sarcoinc.com/03a3bandandhardwaresetcomplete.aspx .
The last set I bought was all remington, unlike the first set that had some repro foreign parts. I built 2 rifles for less than 400 each.
 

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mcv, Very well done, you made my point nicely. A little TLC and you have saved another "Old Warrior" for a few more rounds.
 
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