What to look for with 1903 Springfields? - 1911Forum
Advertise Here
Forum   Reviews   Rules   Legal   Site Supporters & Donations   Advertise

Go Back   1911Forum > >


Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 04-28-2012, 03:40 PM
SnowmanKPT SnowmanKPT is offline
Junior Member
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: Newark OH
Posts: 18
What to look for with 1903 Springfields?

I was in a local pawn shop today and happened across a 1903 Springfield that appeared to be in near original condition. However, not being an expert by any stretch of th imagination I wasn't sure what to look for in determining if it was worth the asking price - $2000. It definitely appeared old and well worn but from some digging I've found, didn't appear to have the finger grooves on the forearm of the stock or the improved sights of the A3 models. However as I have stated wasn't sure what I should be looking for... it just seems that $2000 seems rather steep. Any and all help would be appreciated. - K.P.T.
"If you learn it right, you'll do it right the rest of your life. If you learn it wrong, you'll do it wrong and spend the rest of your life trying to learn to do it right."

- Steve Prazenka (Platoon Sgt who trained (Col.) David Hackworth)
Reply With Quote
Old 04-28-2012, 06:37 PM
RazorBurn RazorBurn is offline
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Southern West Virginia
Age: 45
Posts: 1,212
This will give you some ideas about 1903's especially serial numbers. Low serial numbers are a much debated topic on the CMP forums, but there is a risk of shooting a low serial number Springfield or Rock Island receivers because they were only single heat treated.

Link ---> http://www.odcmp.com/Sales/m1903.htm

Price wise, I'd say anywhere from $500.00 to $800.00 depending on overall condition, muzzle wear, throat erosion, condition and type of stock also. A lot of shops think an '03 is a gold mine, but they're not bringing big money. I picked up an all Remington 1903A3 on Gunbroker for $625.00 shipped that was in excellent condition four or five months ago. The sellers asking price for the '03A3 I picked up was $875.00 by the way.

I'd check out completed auctions on Gunbroker so you can get a feel for what they're going for. I'd honestly say $1,000.00 would be a reach, and only then if it's in cherry condition.

Always some for sale on the CMP forums here ---> http://forums.thecmp.org/forumdisplay.php?f=89

Last edited by RazorBurn; 04-28-2012 at 06:42 PM.
Reply With Quote
Old 04-28-2012, 07:03 PM
La Grenouille La Grenouille is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Mar 2010
Posts: 6,038
AIM Surplus has 1903s for $800 to $1k depending on conditions, and when they're in stock
Reply With Quote
Old 04-28-2012, 07:31 PM
goetztrp goetztrp is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: walbridge ohio
Posts: 3,024
CMP store at Camp Perry also has them for a lot cheaper than the prices shown.
Reply With Quote
Old 04-28-2012, 07:42 PM
Jim Watson Jim Watson is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Florence, Alabama, USA
Posts: 18,230
For $2000 I would expect a pristine example of a standard 1903 or 1903A1, kind of like the 1911s celebrated here that are too nice to shoot.
a decent example of something unusual like a NM or a 1903 that did not get the 1905 or 1906 upgrades.

For anything at all ordinary, that is about triple the going price.
Reply With Quote
Old 04-29-2012, 07:01 PM
Peter B Peter B is online now
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 318
Blue Book has them up to $5000 but those are early and pristine. Most were either updated or sportized and some have been "re-originaled". Have someone look at it who is VERY (meaning TRUELY) knowledgable.
Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2012, 03:10 AM
Phil McGrath Phil McGrath is offline
Join Date: Aug 2003
Age: 47
Posts: 487
Thats just a insane price, I would expect a pristeen NM 03a1 for that kind of coin. I would go over to www.jouster.com for good info a few people I would ask/trust off the top of my head for quality 03 Springfield info are John Baird, ChuckinDenver, RicktheLibrarian.
Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2012, 03:19 PM
6point8shooter 6point8shooter is offline
Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 390
$2k is absurd!

The CMP forum or jouster will allow you to learn a bit about the M1903.
I have a Correct Grade CMP issued M1903A3, it's nearly perfect, was less
than $1k. Average 1903 rifles are $600-800 for a very good condition shooter.
Reply With Quote
Old 05-03-2012, 10:51 AM
Baba Louie Baba Louie is offline
Join Date: Sep 2001
Posts: 433
A pawn shop? They might have what... $150 in it if taken in on pawn? Unless it's a star guaged NM or 03-A4 (highest end of the '03 world IMO) actual values are as others here have stated. $750 ish in good shape.

Offer the pawn shop $400 cash unless they can show you why it is so valuable. Your attitude might be... Just another old relic to you with all sorts of unknown potential problems. No way worth that much OTD.


...worth a read if '03s are in your future. There are other books as well, but this is a place to start (if you like reading books look at their related offerings, a plethora of knowledge there). A lot of variations in the model over the years.

Now a 1922-M2 in .22lr might approach that price range, in fact they are. Cheaper to shoot as well. But pricey.
"If a man neglects to enforce his rights, he cannot complain, if, after a while, the law follows his example." -Oliver Wendell Holmes
Reply With Quote
Old 05-03-2012, 11:34 AM
RickB's Avatar
RickB RickB is online now
1911 Aficionado
Join Date: Mar 2000
Location: Not Seattle, WA, USA
Posts: 20,134
If you are going to shoot it, have the headspace checked. Mine will close on a No-Go, but not on a Field gauge, so I still shoot it a bit.
If you're not shooting you should be moving. If you're not moving you should be reloading. If you're not shooting, moving, or reloading, you should be taping or picking brass. - Z.C.
Reply With Quote
Old 05-03-2012, 08:00 PM
boykinpup boykinpup is offline
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: upstate S.C.
Posts: 747
The 03 Springfield can turn into a swamp if one is not careful. $2,000 is no where near correct, unless it has papers and DNA to back it up.
Reply With Quote
Old 05-08-2012, 09:09 PM
vikingsoftpaw vikingsoftpaw is offline
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: Willoughby,Ohio USA
Posts: 264
98% of all Springfields have been barreled, so the odds are the one you are looking at is not all original.
G-Guns -- PG - Plenty of Guns -- PG-13 more than 12 guns

Iron, Cold Iron, is master of men all! - Kipling
Reply With Quote
Old 05-08-2012, 09:24 PM
Johnny Numbers Johnny Numbers is offline
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Houston,TX.
Posts: 1,257
I have a "Smith Corona" that I paid $200 for back in the middle 90's. I have never shot it and my father has it at his house probably stuck in one of his closets somewhere.

I have no idea what it would be worth now...but if it's in the range of $600+...then that's a pretty good return on my initial investment. I may have to go over there and snap a few pics to post. My curiosity is definitely piqued.
1911's: Ed Brown ΜΟΛΩΝ ΛΑβΕ, Dan Wesson CBOB, Colt 1991 Government, Springfield GI
Reply With Quote
Old 05-08-2012, 09:26 PM
flgolfer29 flgolfer29 is offline
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: Florida panhandle
Age: 54
Posts: 317
I recently sold one that had been sporterized for $190.00. It had a beautiful stock but had been rebarreled. The gun (Springfield Armory) dated 1920 or 1921 & the barrel dated 1944(?) best I remember. I really have no interest in long guns and it was taking up valuable safe real estate.

I paid $100 for it about six months ago.

Reply With Quote


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:19 PM.

NOTICE TO USERS OF THIS SITE: By continuing to use this site, you certify that you have read and agree to abide by the Legal Terms of Use. All information, data, text or other materials ("Content") posted to this site by any users are the sole responsibility of those users. 1911Forum does not guarantee the accuracy, integrity, or quality of such Content.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Search Engine Optimisation provided by DragonByte SEO (Lite) - vBulletin Mods & Addons Copyright © 2017 DragonByte Technologies Ltd.
Copyright 2015 1911Forum.com, LLC. All Rights Reserved