USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

45bpcr

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It's cool that I'm not the only one doing this.

Mine's built using period correct parts and is clearly a fake.

It all started with a deal on a Unertl scope with broken cross hairs.

I sent the scope out to Mr.Parson for repair and re-furbishment but did not have it "restored". It's a 16X 1 1/2 target scope.
I bought mounts off Gunbroker to fit a Springfield 1903.
Scope, scope repairs and mounts + $898.00

Next step was to find a "donor" rifle. Lo and behold a 1903 sporter was found for the Princely sum of $235.00

I searched for a Springfield 4 groove barrel and scored one made in 1942 for $125.00 brand new in the wrapper.
It was what I wanted as the reciver was dated from 1942 as well. The barrel had the rear sight sleeve and front sight base on it so it was clearly for a 1903 A-1

I have a Midway barrel vise and action wrench set I bought for a M-96 Swede prodject and used that to take it all apart and install the replacement barrel.

With the new barrel on the reciver head space was just a tad tight. Kinda like when your brass needs a shoulder bump.

So I used valve lapping compound on the locking lugs until it closed nice. The lugs now have full contact over thier entire surface as well.

I modified the bolt with a bench grinder to clear the scope.
I sanded and polished it after with a cheapo Ryobi palm sander and polished it with abrasives from a barrel lapping kit I have.

Next up was a stock. I didn't want to deal with an oil soaked tent peg.
I also did NOT want to have any inspectors cartouche's on it.
I didn't want to be accused of making a forgery

The CMP had some C-stocks available stamped with thier logo that were supposed to be 100% drop in.

Yea -----

The stock looked great, fit was terrible. I can't remeber what it cost but want to say it was under $200.00

So I used some ( inexpensive = chinese ) stock in-letting tools and removed alot of wood.
I then bedded the whole thing with Devcon plastic steel compound.
I know, now it's not legal for sanctioned matches. I'm OK with that.

I bought the metal hardware from Numrich. Some of it was junk ( chinese ) And some of it needed work. I repaired the rear sight, threw away the first front sight and front band retainer.
I found some other NOS and used parts here and there and used those.
I glass beaded the used stuff at my shop and used "Wonder Black" to re-finish them. It actually matches the finish on the NOS parts pretty well.

Finally the monday after Christmas I put it all together as my business was closed that day.
It looked beautifull :)

Today I shot it. Being blonde, I left my paper tagets at home.

I brought a bag of greek M-2 ball and some handloads with 175 SMK and IMR4350 powder.
I used the M-2 ball to shoot and break in the barrel. Shoot clean, shoot clean, You guys know the routine.
Lacking paper targets, I set out skeets at 100, 200, and 300 yds and contented my self with breaking them.

It was a good day,

45BPCR

I should probably post some pics of the thing huh? :)
 

45bpcr

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

So I suppose there may be some kind soul here who can enlighten me about up-loading pics from my PC.

45BPCR

Either that or I'll post them all at Accurate Shooters site and you can see them there :)
 

Joop

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

Sounds like a great project!

Go to photobucket and open a free account. You can upload your pics to there, then post the links in your thread to show the pictures. It's pretty simple, once you've done it a couple times.
 

clmayfield

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

Hi-Lux is coming up with a Unertl clone. I am thinking of buying one of those and making a little 1903a1/1941 build.
 

JFComfort

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

Where are the freaking pictures?! Awesome project man!
 

BasraBoy

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

Sounds great - like everyone else, would love to see the end results......where's the PICS????
 

45bpcr

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

:) I'd forgotten about photobucket
here's some pics.
DSC_3209.jpg


Here's the assembled barrel action and bolt.

076.jpg


This is the CMP stock as it came out of the box.

http://i1221.photobucket.com/albums/dd471/45bpcr/1903%20sniper%20clone/077.jpg

The start of the inletting.
The brass pillar for the tang needed to be taken down at least a 1/16 on each side

I'll get more up later today, need to go start 2012 :)

45bpcr
 

45bpcr

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

Well 2012 is roaring along today.
We're swamped!

After much wood removal "Captian Cob" set to work with the bedding compound.
The barrel didn't sit straight in the forearm so I removed wood and added Devcon
I used Devcon on the recoil lug and tang with some re-inforcement in the trigger area.

DSC00612.jpg


DSC00610.jpg


DSC00611.jpg


That let everthing sit nice and straight

078.jpg


45bpcr
 

45bpcr

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

Then, as I had the stuff all mixed up I bedded the scope blocks
for two reasons.
1 it made them sit good
2 it made it a WHOLE lot easier to drill and tap the screw holes.

DSC00315.jpg


DSC00314.jpg


You only get 1 chance to drill a hole in a gun barrel.

On a side note drilling the reciver caused SWMBO to come down stairs wondering why I was bitching about chinese stealth fighters.
I wonder how they can build a stealth fighter when they can't make a drill press with an accurate table that dosn't bend.

45bpcr
 

BasraBoy

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: 45bpcr</div><div class="ubbcode-body">I wonder how they can build a stealth fighter when they can't make a drill press with an accurate table that dosn't bend.</div></div>

LOL!! Judging by most Chinese products I've seen, their stealth fighter probably bends too......

Keep those pics coming!
 

45bpcr

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

Next up was modifying the handguard.

I used a high tech rasp :)

Some minwax stain matched the finish just fine.

DSC00527.jpg


Then I peiced everthing together to check fit.

DSC00526.jpg


The bolt wouldn't clear the scope when elevation was at it's lowest so I used a special bolt modification device.

DSC00663.jpg


I sanded it with a cheapo palm sander then polished it with 200 to 600 grit barrel lapping compound.
It came out nice

DSC00662.jpg

DSC00661.jpg


Note:
When using special bolt modification tool on SWMBO's new washing machine, remeber to clean all traces of ginding BEFORE she does laundry.

45bpcr
 

45bpcr

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

All in all it was a fun project

I'm really looking froward to shooting some good handloads on paper and at longer ranges to see what it'll do

A range report will be posted.

DSC00625.jpg


DSC00624.jpg

http://i1221.photobucket.com/albums/dd471/45bpcr/1903%20sniper%20clone/DSC00659.jpg

I still have to install the front sight and sight protector and a real retainer clip for the center stock band but all in all I'm happy

45bpcr
 

Joop

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

Wow, that looks great. Well done!

<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Quote:</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Note:
When using special bolt modification tool on SWMBO's new washing machine, remeber to clean all traces of ginding BEFORE she does laundry.</div></div>
Failing to follow this great advice could have serious consequences to your projects, both present and future.
laugh.gif
 

RMPSTRAT

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

looks great! between you and BasraBoy is got me thinking and wishing I had a donor 03, then I got to thinking DUH I have a couple. I havea line on a pre war mod 70 that I wanted to do but until then it looks like it'll be an '03
 

45bpcr

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

SWMBO is a great woman.

She puts up with me

I don't really post alot on these boards, I just lurk.

I do post a bit on Accurate Shooter, Cast boolits and a few on gunboards.

I might start hanging out more here though.

Search my handle on youtube, there's some vids up there of me shooting a 45-90 and a Gibbs muzzle loader @ 500 yds.

45bpcr
 

ArcticLight

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

That's right nice.

Gets me thi nking if I can come up with a scope I may go that route with my 03...
 

eric BPCR

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: 45bpcr</div><div class="ubbcode-body">
DSC00612.jpg

</div></div>

Barrel is in contact with the bedding at this place ?
 

BasraBoy

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: shooter4570</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Barrel is in contact with the bedding at this place ? </div></div>

Like the MkIII Enfield the 1903 stock forend bears against the barrel.

It's interesting to see it bedded there, I'd not thought of that.

Would like to know how it shoots.......
 

BasraBoy

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

Thanks Ray.

My No4T clone is bedded at the action ((using modern methods/materials, rather than the original way, simply to save time/money!!) and it is very accurate.

Were the original M1903A1 bedded at all? I've not found any mention of this...but like the idea!!
 

BasraBoy

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

bugaboo - that is to return to battery mechanism used on earlier Unertl scopes (and others?) using the recoil of the rifle.

These were removed by the USMC as they thought that they were not up to the rigours of field use. The scope must then be pulled back in the mounts to return to battery after each shot.
 

Marksman

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

Was that a recent Parson's refurb or one done before the old man died?
 

Tazaroo

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: BasraBoy</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Thanks Ray.

My No4T clone is bedded at the action ((using modern methods/materials, rather than the original way, simply to save time/money!!) and it is very accurate.

Were the original M1903A1 bedded at all? I've not found any mention of this...but like the idea!! </div></div>

They were not bedded.
 

eric BPCR

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

<div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: BasraBoy</div><div class="ubbcode-body"><div class="ubbcode-block"><div class="ubbcode-header">Originally Posted By: shooter4570</div><div class="ubbcode-body">Barrel is in contact with the bedding at this place ? </div></div>

Like the MkIII Enfield the 1903 stock forend bears against the barrel.

It's interesting to see it bedded there, I'd not thought of that.

Would like to know how it shoots....... </div></div>

Okay ! Top forend is bedded too ?
 

BasraBoy

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

No the Enfield and Springfields are not bedded there.

But the stock contacts the barrel and, certainly on Enfields, there is a force of somewhere between 3lb and 6lb depending on the modle of rifle.

I'm not sure of the force bearing on the barrel on a Springfield.....

Anyone help on that?
 

45bpcr

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

The scope was one of the last ones that Mr.Parsons completed.

I've read Col. Brophy's book on the 1903 and he states that 8 to 10 lbs. of upward pressure is what was needed on the 1903 rifle.

So I used business cards close to the fore end until I could see them move a tad when 10lbs of upwards force was applied.
Then I added one more and applied the bedding compound. I figure it's easier to remove material than to re-apply it.

I shot it on paper yesterday @ 200yds.
I used Greek M-2 ball and some handloads.
Powder was IMR4350, cases were up-preped Winchester and primers were Remington.
No benchrest methods were used :)

Powder charges were accuracy loads from Sierra's manual.
Seating depth was magazine length.
Bullits were
175 SMK
185 Lapua D46

I really REALLY wanted the D46 to shoot and it does :)
It goes hand in hand with the age of the rifle.

200yard.jpg


As time goes buy I'll experiment with powders, primers, brass and seating depths.

Some of the flyers can be attributed to the scope bumping my nose :)

I'm keeping all my Lapua 06 brass for my 1952 M-70 Marksman though
That has a Unertl as well.
I should but up some pics of that, It'll give you guys a chubbie :)

45bpcr

 

nashlaw

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Re: USMC 1903 Sniper CLONE finished

Thank you, 45bpcr. The pictures are great and the commentary informative and funny.

Great job!