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M1903 bronze firing pins
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October 18, 2017 - 9:11 pm
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JWA has suggested that I do not shoot my early M1903 # 8493, PR dated 1904, as it has a bronze firing pin. Other than JWA, has anyone had any issues with their early M1903’s? I really want to shoot this rifle. Not a lot, just to get it on paper at 50 yards. The rifle is in about a 90 to 92% condition. Minty bore and the bolt is still blued.  Big Larry

 

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October 19, 2017 - 11:25 am
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I can’t say I have ever heard of or encountered the issue before. If they do present an issue and I really wanted to shoot the rifle I would simply swap out the firing pin for a steel one and keep the bronze one so you do have the original one for the rifle. I have recently seen a few of these rifles being broken down for parts so locating one shouldn’t be to difficult. I know the newer Aquila ammo produced does not seem to be loaded quite to the same specs as older Winchester or Remington ammo. It does cycle and function but  has more of a pop than a distinctive crack produced by the older stuff. I need to run a few rounds across my chronograph and see how much difference there really is. They certainly are fun little rifles to shoot. I have shot a few tree rats off my wife’s bird feeders with mine. Accuracy is not stellar but good enough for minute of angle tree rat at 25-30 yards. That’s about all I can add………

Just did a quick search and Numrich has originals in stock. https://www.gunpartscorp.com/products/383700 

Hope this helps,

Erin

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October 19, 2017 - 12:47 pm
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I recently purchased a ca1906 Model 1903 that had a bronze firing pin. I actually thought it was a nicely made replacement part. The bolt roller was missing, too. I purchased a steel firing pin and roller and am happy with the results. The rifle functions well and seems to like the Aguila ammunition.

GMC(SW) - USN Retired 1978 - 2001

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October 19, 2017 - 4:03 pm
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Thanks for all the info, but I am not into taking rifles apart and replacing parts in them. I am mostly a collector first and shooter second. I bought 5 boxes of Agulia to shoot just in case. I also collect period ammo for my guns and a 1915 box of 22 Winchester Auto, the closest I could get to my 1904 period rifle, cost me $150 shipped. It is drippy mint and sealed. I just may buy another M1903 to shoot. The one I have is one of the nicest ones I have found after looking for quite a while. Come payday, I will have this rifle lettered. Yep, they do have records on some of them. Will also be lettering my M1873 22 short. Both rifles are in great condition and warrant a letter. Letterable 22’s are kind of scarce as most were not serial numbered. My M1885 SS, in 22 short, is lettered with 5 special order features. Again, thanks for the responses.    Big Larry

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