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  #11  
Old 09-29-2018, 05:39 PM
Kaliman Kaliman is offline
 
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Also forgot to say - Steve thanks for posting this stuff
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  #12  
Old 09-29-2018, 06:31 PM
bruce bruce is offline
 
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Must admit, from time to time I've given thought to getting a LN 03 w/ a nice barrel and doing some shooting with it. Don't know why. I have several 03's that are not LN, that are either WWI HN or WWII Remington. Just find it hard to believe that the LN 03's were so unfailingly dangerous given what I've been able to find and read about the whole matter. JMHO. Sincerely. bruce.
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  #13  
Old 09-29-2018, 08:12 PM
Jpm Jpm is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaliman View Post
-For all the use in combat, I think there are very few if any accounts of 03 failing in combat.
I don't think there were a lot of people hanging around taking notes during combat of what killed who, or even realizing in the heat of battle that Joe's rifle just blew up in his face because it was a brittle receiver and not the result of enemy fire of some sort. They had bigger problems to be concerned with, so I wouldn't use the lack of reporting as proof it didn't happen that much.
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  #14  
Old 09-29-2018, 08:48 PM
RC20 RC20 is offline
 
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Thanks for the posting. Adds to the history.

Mostly I suspect if they were going to fail they would have done so.

Each to his own. I wouldn't push anyone one way or the other.
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  #15  
Old 09-30-2018, 08:40 AM
Kaliman Kaliman is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jpm View Post
I don't think there were a lot of people hanging around taking notes during combat of what killed who, or even realizing in the heat of battle that Joe's rifle just blew up in his face because it was a brittle receiver and not the result of enemy fire of some sort. They had bigger problems to be concerned with, so I wouldn't use the lack of reporting as proof it didn't happen that much.
How about this then - compare the number of known failures Marines reported with how often and how many Marines shot rifle qualification throughout their career and at MCRD
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  #16  
Old 09-30-2018, 09:09 AM
cplnorton cplnorton is offline
 
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They did report rifles that blew up in war, but it wasn't that many. The Marine files from WWI don't exist anymore. Or only a few documents exist as the Marines had a document purge about 1920 and they were destroyed. But the Army files would be very detailed on this. This is outside my realm of study and Andrew would be a better one to ask. As he has read more WWI Army files than probably anyone alive at this point.

I have not seen any mentions of any blowing up in WWII.

There is a mention of rifles blowing up in the Winchester files. Because WRA was a huge supplier of ammo for the war, they were contacted about the rifles.

This is just two pages of the correspondence. It's much more detailed but this is the basics of what they determined. This was the official WRA position on it, it was due to hangfires and defective primers. Which any rifle wouldn't survive a hang fire.

The only mentions I have seen are from 1917. I have not seen a mention in 1918, but from the WRA files it sounds like Ordnance changed their stance on ammo and the quality control was greatly improved.

Now one thing to add to this. The Marines also determined it was faulty ammo and would not use certain lots of WWI era ammo. In fact one rifle that blew up in the 1920's, they detail that some of that faulty/restricted ammo was mistakenly shipped by someone and it was used accidentally in a rifle causing it to fail.

Every-time a rifle failed a FULL investigation ensued. The round was collected and analyzed, the pieces of the rifle were inspected and pieced back together and usually a full report was done on it. I will try to go back and find one of these and show you, because you would be surprised how much they actually did on this. But they were very detailed and methodical in the way they researched a failure. I think on one I probably have like 20 or more pages on it.

One final thing to add, WRA was very well versed in the M1903. The Govt was trying to outsource the manufacture of M1903's to civilian companies, and the one who was the leader and almost into production when the war started was WRA. WRA was fighting hard for that govt contract and if the war didn't start until probably a year later than it did, we would have seen WRA M1903's in France instead of M1917's.

Also WRA used M1903's for extensive tests on their ammo. They had M1903's that they did endurance testing on to see how much they could handle. There are rifles that shot over 15,000 rounds.

So WRA's opinion on this, should be very well respected because besides Springfield, no one was more well versed in the M1903 than them.




Last edited by cplnorton; 09-30-2018 at 09:17 AM.
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  #17  
Old 10-01-2018, 07:23 AM
Chap17 Chap17 is offline
 
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This is like reading a modern "Hatcher". Excellent and Thanks,

Jess
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  #18  
Old 10-01-2018, 03:42 PM
wrwindsor wrwindsor is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bruce View Post
Must admit, from time to time I've given thought to getting a LN 03 w/ a nice barrel and doing some shooting with it. Don't know why. I have several 03's that are not LN, that are either WWI HN or WWII Remington. Just find it hard to believe that the LN 03's were so unfailingly dangerous given what I've been able to find and read about the whole matter. JMHO. Sincerely. bruce.
I have one, bought it from the CMP. Came with a HS 9-44 barrel with ME of "1", so basically a new barely-shot barrel. They (CMP) ground the tip of the firing pin down and included a card warning of the dangers of shooting it.

I took it (and other '03s) to a gunsmith to pick out good parts for a Rock Island '03 build (nickel steel receiver). When I picked everything up, I asked his opinion about shooting the rifles rebuilt with leftover parts, including Mr. "Low SN."

He said, "Problem was most likely ammunition, but I have to recommend that you don't shoot it. Hang it on the wall, instead."

Everyone handling these will express the same warning due to our litigious society.

So.. I recommend you enjoy the '03s you already have.
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