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Thread: Strange Stock Modifications to Rem. 1903

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  1. #1
    Legacy Member ArtPahl's Avatar
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    Strange Stock Modifications to Rem. 1903

    I haven't tried to post pictures to this forum before so maybe this won't work out.

    I got this rifle 50+ years ago from a LGS because it was a novelty. Some one put a lot of effort into it for what purpose? The wood work is excellent but---. The rifle itself is an early one; around 2/42, the barrel is a SA 10/42 (no punch mark). The front sight has been thickened by adding a thin steel spacer to one side. The bayonet lug had been ground off (I replaced that part). The hand guard hump sanded off, the rear sight removed and the sight base milled down and a Lyman 48 attached. A cheek piece and a pistol grip added to the stock and the stock painted with a dark varnish! I removed the paint and refinished the stock. The rifle shoots well, the work is very well done (except maybe the paint!) but I have often wondered why. Was it an attempt to make a target rifle? Of course at the time I bought it, 1903's were selling for around $35 (I don't remember what I paid for this one.) so it was not unusual to see weird modifications done to them but this seems over the top.

    If some one can instruct me how to attach pictures from my hard drive, I'll try to do it.
    Last edited by ArtPahl; 01-28-2022 at 12:36 PM.

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    Advisory Panel browningautorifle's Avatar
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    There are tutorials here but if you like...I can do it. Send me the pics, see your PM for an email address...
    Regards, Jim

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    Advisory Panel browningautorifle's Avatar
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    Here are his pics of the stock mods. Not so unusual. I've seen these type of things before here.
    Regards, Jim

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    Contributing Member ssgross's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by browningautorifleicon View Post
    Not so unusual. I've seen these type of things before here.
    The modifications look well thought out, and carefully completed too - Nothing like the Rem M1903 I'm picking up this weekend. Total bubba job on the stock.

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    Advisory Panel browningautorifle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ssgross View Post
    like the Rem M1903 I'm picking up this weekend.
    We'll expect a picture heavy thread of course...resurrection...
    Regards, Jim

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    Contributing Member rcathey's Avatar
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    I’ve seen a lot of added grips like that on Krags.
    First one I’ve seen on a 1903 — likely due to easy availability of pistol-gripped 1903 stocks.

    Interesting modifications!

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    Contributing Member ssgross's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rcathey View Post
    likely due to easy availability of pistol-gripped 1903 stocks.
    and likely an early 1940's addition of Howe's "modern Gunsmithing", Vol 1. I'll have to check mine, but I think he describes how to add such features to both Krags and 03.

    Quote Originally Posted by browningautorifleicon View Post
    We'll expect a picture heavy thread of course...resurrection..
    I keep telling myself I'm done. I have enough, then my heart throbs in a pawn shop and the price is irresistible. If this one needs a new barrel, I may do another USMC A1 clone, and gift to my little brother and start shooting the vintage matches together. He doesn't live far from Camp Perry - and it's been on our todo for a long time. We have USMC service in common, over a decade apart. I suppose the worst case is I pick the best shooter and sell d other.
    Last edited by ssgross; 01-28-2022 at 10:02 PM.

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  11. #8
    Legacy Member ArtPahl's Avatar
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    The guy who did this must have been a Woodworker with a capital "W"! I am not too bad with a checkering tool or an inletting chisel but I sure don't have the tools to cut those square corners with the precision this stock has. I think this stock, if original, would have had some collector interest. It has a boxed CHJ inspectors stamp, the cut-off notch has what looks like a "J", the butt plate has heavy square checkering, and the trap has the groove for a spare striker. I find it interesting, also, that with all the care and precision he put into some areas, he didn't seem to care about others: The trigger guard, for instance, is the roughest I've ever seen! Heavy machining marks and the floor plate is dented and pitted. With all the spare parts available cheap, in those days, why not replace 'em? It's not as though any attempt was made toward originality.

    My other wonder--Why? What was the purpose? It certainly wasn't intended as a hunting rifle. And the mods would have disqualified it as a military match rifle. Oh, well; just another mystery.

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    Advisory Panel browningautorifle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ArtPahl View Post
    My other wonder--Why? What was the purpose? It certainly wasn't intended as a hunting rifle.
    I'll bet it was though. The iron sights will probably come up perfectly and it should carry at the blended off rear sight. I used to swear by iron until my eyes changed.
    Regards, Jim

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    Contributing Member mmppres's Avatar
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    I have seen that style of check piece on a custom rifle made from a Mauser receiver. That it was a great fit wood to wood. An when mounted your eye was right on the sights

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