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Old April 14th, 2018, 11:41 AM #1
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Remington M1903A3 Serial #'s

Hello Everyone

I was going to post this over in the "Rifles" forum, but I figured I'd get get better results with this group. I've been trying to figure out the production run and ultimate destination of my Remington M1903A3.

Some background: I bought this rifle going on 20 years ago from Ron Peterson's Gun Shop in New Mexico (awesome place if you're ever out that way). I bought it because it appeared to be all Remington (down to the sling swivels) and looked to have original bluing (ie: not reparkerized). I know most of these have been arsenal refurbished at some point in their lives, but this one looked to be mostly original, or at least someone took the time to track down Remington parts... so, I paid the princely sum of $400 at the time and I've had it ever since.

The barrel date is 6-43 (two-groove), and the serial # is: 3,831,xxx... Here's where I need help. According to the information I found, July '43 production started at 3,824,829.There's a discrepancy here, albeit only by one month of production... but is it possible that I have at least the original barreled action for this particular rifle?

The stock does not appear to have been refinished or sanded. All cartrouches are bold and the wood appears to have a dark rich glow about it.

Any information would be greatly appreciated... thanks in advance.
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Last edited by lkenefic; April 19th, 2018 at 05:31 PM.
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Old April 14th, 2018, 01:48 PM #2
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Seems perfectly normal for a June 43 barrel to be original to a July 43 receiver.

The barrel shop is madly cranking out barrels, and stamping dates on them. They wait their turn to be installed on receivers.

Receivers are being made over yonder in a different area, and are assembled with barrels which may be several months old.

It doesn't sound like a discrepency at all. It sounds like the expected thing.
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Old April 14th, 2018, 03:21 PM #3
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I thought as much... any thoughts on the stock cartrouches? I see the "RA" stamp and the ordnance proof mark. I'm not sure what the other marks mean. I'm finding all sorts of conflicting and confusing "info" online...
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Old April 14th, 2018, 09:59 PM #4
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"RA" probably stands for Raritan Arsenal. The rifle must have gone through the Arsenal to be checked and rebuilt if needed. It could also have had the stock switched by someone over the years.
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Old April 14th, 2018, 11:20 PM #5
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For Remington Arms...
"RA" was stamped on the stocks after Smith-Corona began production of M1903a3 Rifles, late 1942.
Other styles of Ordnance Wheel and "FJA" in box.

Raritan Arsenal was RAP...

https://sites.google.com/site/wwii19.../stock-example
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Old April 15th, 2018, 12:52 AM #6
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Sometimes the original parts were from different manufactures made many months possibly including different year date earlier. Like High Standard made barrels on Smith Corona rifles. They had to be produced, cataloged, packed, transported, and then weren't necessary pulled and installed in FIFO, LIFO, or production date order. So month of manufacture may not match.
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Old April 15th, 2018, 08:19 AM #7
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But last month's barrel going on this month's receiver sounds just about right to me.
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Old April 16th, 2018, 12:15 AM #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Threeband View Post
But last month's barrel going on this month's receiver sounds just about right to me.
Yep Sir!
Nothing odd about it at all.
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Old April 16th, 2018, 07:29 AM #9
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what do you think about the stock being original to the barreled action? The markings appear to be consistent with Remington, but I don't know about the date of manufacture and all of those other markings forward of the trigger guard...
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Old April 16th, 2018, 09:16 AM #10
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Those markings ahead of the trigger guard are not uncommon but I've heard varying and unverified explanations. I read they were indicative of a Smith-Corona stock and also Remington. I've never seen or read anything definitive on them.
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