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Thread: building an M1917 sniper rifle

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    building an M1917 sniper rifle

    this is my first thoughts on building up an M1917 with period glass. it's not quite what i'd consider a cohesive plan, yet, tho, so i'd like to get some input from the hide experts.

    i know that there were no historical M1917 sniper rifles. there were some prototypes built designated M1918 using eastman kodak scopes, but the great war ended before that contract could gather steam and after the war springfield armory would brook no competitors.

    i have a fantastic M1917 that i'm having a devil of a time shooting. when i was younger, i could force my eyes to focus well enough to shoot straight, and mine is a shooter. however, i'm dealing with a defect in my lens that my age is starting to really have problems overcoming. i've pretty much given up shooting irons in across the course service rifle competition (still shooting under NRA rule 3.3.4 which allows glass).

    i enjoyed shooting my M1917, but the thin blade just sort of disappears on me now. thus, i'm thinking hard about having some work done to it to shoot with period glass.

    i'm thinking of drilling and tapping the receiver and barrel to accept bases in the way the unertls were mounted to the M1903s with O and E bases. basraboy's thread on building up a USMC M1903 sniper rifle has motivated me.

    yes, i know that there were no official sniper conversions with the unertl glass for the M1917, however, this would make the rifle shootable again for me and i'd like to shoot matches in the vintage sniper class.

    has anyone attempted to mount the 8x unertl onto an M1917? if so, how did you do it? are there any bases that i can buy that would work or will i need to make them myself?

    i know only a little about the P14 system and know nothing about how one would go about finding parts and modifying the receiver to accept them. however, with the greatest respect to our brit cousins, i'd like to start off and try to build an american system first.

    if putting a unertl on an M1917 is an insane idea, then, well, let me know. if there are other period alternatives i would be open to considering them, as well.

    thanks

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    2-many-dogs - sounds like a great idea for a project.

    And you have the most important part - a rifle that is a proven shooter!

    I'm not sure if the M1918 ever entered service with the USMC or US Army - although Senich's book on the USMC Scout-Snipers in WW2 and Korea does show a couple of pics of M1917 with Warner and Swasey and also Winchester A5's attached.

    One of the captions on the pics mention's USMC modified mounts for the A5:



    I'm guessing the A5 would not give you the magnification you need (I know my eyes find anything under x4 not much better than iron sights at distances beyond around 300yds [img]<>/wink.gif[/img] )

    BUT....and this may be interesting for you....the P14 was in service with both the British and Australians up until the late 1940's - it was issued in the UK to the Home Guard during WW2. So maybe that would qualify it for Vintage Sniper Matches?

    In "With British Snipers to the Reich" Shore is a fervent advocate of the P14 as his prefered tool for the job!

    There are some pics over on milsurps.com Knowledge Library.

    They mostly appear to be using British BSA scopes. I can't find too much information on what the "issue" spec was over here. Hope I'm not breaking any rules by posting the links?

    http://www.milsurps.com/content.php?...united-kingdom

    http://www.milsurps.com/content.php?r=196-No.3-MkI*-(T)-Rifle-(BSA-Scope)-(Pattern-1914-Mk1*-W-(T)-Sniper-Rifle)

    http://www.milsurps.com/content.php?r=196-No.3-MkI*-(T)-Rifle-(BSA-Scope)-(Pattern-1914-Mk1*-W-(T)-Sniper-Rifle)

    http://www.milsurps.com/content.php?r=164-No.3-MkI*-(T)-Rifle-(PP-Scope)-(Pattern-1914-Mk1*-W-(T)-Sniper-Rifle)

    (Sorry, for some reason the links to the pics pages didn't work - cut and paste to your browser to access)

    It may be worth checking out Steve Earle Products for some suitable mounts - that's where I got my O and E pattern mounts from:

    http://steveearleproducts.com/

    I don't know if he does anything as standard for the M1917...but maybe he can advise on modifying something to suit? I would have thought the main issues in this would be the correct radius for the underside of the base, the spacing between them and the height above bore.

    Somewhere I found the info on this for the m1903/Unertl online. I'll have a look to see if I can find it again but not sure it'd be much use for a different rifle or rifle/scope combo?

    Paul, the smith who did my No4T and is doing my M1903A1 is thinking of doing just the project you mention for his own use.....I'll keep you posted if it gets off the ground.

    Good luck - should be a good one!

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    if your 1917 is still original, they are getting mor valuable. Most go for $700+ now days. You will kill that value if you D&T it. It may make a nice shooter but you will never increase in value after you D&T it. Leave that one alone and find one that has been messed with. There out there and so ar stocks ect. Most all of them shoot very well.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    What he said!!

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    I was at the Cody Firearms Museum in Cody Wy. Downstairs I saw three P17 sniper rifles. They had barrels as thick as car axles. Would be a great place for reference. Good luck with the build

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    thanks!

    yes, it's a basic M1917 with all GI parts. it's not "original" in the sense that it was put together with a new barrel (many years ago), cleaned up sights, tight fitted stock, and a cleaned up trigger. it's well taken care of and well loved.

    i am a bit reluctant to modify the receiver, however, unless i can do something to it, it's just gonna sit unshot until my sons are old enough to appreciate it (they current appreciate ARs and wooden stocked guns are too old for their tastes). atlas and loner, it is an interesting thought about picking up a sporterized 1917 and returning it to a GI configuration. i'll look into that.

    i suppose another way to go is to figure out a clamp on base. S&K makes one, but i have no experience with them. i'd like to stay with period glass - could i mount an M84 telescopic sight onto that S&K base? the M84 has a 7/8" tube so finding rings might be challenging. the other downside is, as basraboy astutely deduced, 2x isn't going to cut it with my eyes.

    basraboy, my copy of "with british snipers to the reich" is on the nightstand as we speak. reading it for the third time. i appreciate your references. steve earle keeps coming up in my searches - i'll be calling them. i'd love to hear what your smith is planning on his 1917(?) build and would be happy to share research with you and him.

    dagger, thanks for the cody museum reference. i checked on line and they have a difficult to use web site for the firearms in their collections. i plan to give them a call.

    thanks, guys! as i find out more, i'll post that on this thread. i won't have the depth of research that basraboy has in his 1903 build (i am mightily impressed with the details), but if i can dig up a gem or two, i will share them in case it helps someone else.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    2_many_dogs,

    Just wanted to chime in on this as I just finished doing a whole bunch of research on this. Somewhere around 150 U.S. Model of 1917's were issued with Warner & Swasey scopes and around 50 of the same rifles, all Winchesters, were issued with Winchester A5 scopes. Compare that to the 1530 M1903 Springfields issued with Warner & Swasey scopes.

    M1917's weren't seen in a broad spectrum in the sniping role like the 1903's, but they were there. Many believe it was the better rifle. For all intents and purposes though, the 1917 and the 1903 are pretty close to being the same thing, a Mauser actioned battle rifle.
    Every shot serves a purpose, whether accurate or inaccurate. It will always tell you what you did, and did not do, right. Even if all you have is a fraction of a second to make it, learn from it. So the next one is even better.

    The pen is only mighty when it is backed by the sword.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    My Pattern 14 Enfield is my most accurate vintage rifle. Sub MOA with HXP Ball.

    The triggers on these are serviceable and can be made to be very good.

    I don't know where the US Model of 1917 fits in the CMP rules when it comes to the CMP Sniper match. You may want to consult the rule book if you have any inklings of shooting the CMP Vintage Sniper match with it before proceeding.
    =======================================
    Joel - Get OFF the BABYSITTER!!!



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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    sandwarrior, that is excellent news. i personally think the 1917 is a better rifle - and before the '03 zealots get uppity, i also greatly admire the '03. where did you find your information?

    cracka - yeah, it's a bit of a buzzkill since the CMP does not even have the 1917 in its list of acceptable rifles. the upside, however, is that there are many local club matches and they are less restrictive.

    thanks, guys!

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    Have one '03 and two 03A3's but have to admit, I prefer my '17. Maybe because she's an "ugly duckling" but this duck can shoot damn straight. As a purist I'll keep her with iron sights but as I age, scoping it with a period scope is kind of tempting.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    Originally Posted By: 2_many_dogs
    sandwarrior, that is excellent news. i personally think the 1917 is a better rifle - and before the '03 zealots get uppity, i also greatly admire the '03. where did you find your information?

    cracka - yeah, it's a bit of a buzzkill since the CMP does not even have the 1917 in its list of acceptable rifles. the upside, however, is that there are many local club matches and they are less restrictive.

    thanks, guys!


    2_many_dogs,

    here's one source:

    http://www.oldmagazinearticles.com/W...LD_WAR_ONE_pdf

    And some more:

    http://www.oldmagazinearticles.com/W...ard_Sniper_pdf

    Yet another:

    http://www.ww2incolor.com/forum/show.../page2&p=82718 & highlight=swasey#post82718

    Keep searching on the Internet. I can't remember the guys name but he deals in old sniper rifles down in South Carolina. He pointed me to some things I could at least use as keywords. For some dumb reason I never bookmarked the pages....


    Added:

    It seems to me that I found some stuff on the side stories attached to these as well. But, it's in there somewhere.
    Every shot serves a purpose, whether accurate or inaccurate. It will always tell you what you did, and did not do, right. Even if all you have is a fraction of a second to make it, learn from it. So the next one is even better.

    The pen is only mighty when it is backed by the sword.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    Originally Posted By: sandwarrior
    2_many_dogs,

    Just wanted to chime in on this as I just finished doing a whole bunch of research on this. Somewhere around 150 U.S. Model of 1917's were issued with Warner & Swasey scopes and around 50 of the same rifles, all Winchesters, were issued with Winchester A5 scopes. Compare that to the 1530 M1903 Springfields issued with Warner & Swasey scopes.

    M1917's weren't seen in a broad spectrum in the sniping role like the 1903's, but they were there. Many believe it was the better rifle. For all intents and purposes though, the 1917 and the 1903 are pretty close to being the same thing, a Mauser actioned battle rifle.


    Could you tell me the source of that information? I remember reading that they saw limitted use but can't remember where I read it
    Great-grandson of a vet, Grandson of a Vet, son of a Vet, Nephew of four Vets, cousin of seven Vets, Vet, husband of a Vet, god father of two Vets, father of a Vet. Great-grandson of a LEO, grandson of a LEO, cousin of two LEO and father of a LEO. God bless the good guys.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    There was also the Winchester Model 1918 telescope for the 1917 Enfield. Didn't work well.

    32,000 were ordered but few were delevered but none were delivered before the end of the war. Those that were delivered were sent to the Infantry board for testing.

    "THE PICTORIAL HISTORY OF US SNIPING" By Peter R. Senich

    A couple other Senich's books (can't remember which ones) also made reference to attempts to use the 1917 as a sniper system, I think mostly pushed by those who thought or wanted the 1917 to replace the 1903 as our main rifle.

    None of the attemts faired well if I remember right. There was some experements but no 1917 was offically adapted as a US Military sniper rifle, that's why you can't get the CMP to allow them in their GSM Vintage Sniper Matches.
    Kraig Stuart
    Distinguished Rifle Badge #1071
    USAMU Sniper School, Oct '78


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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    If your going to build one the Unertl O&E basis should work just fine for you.

    If you want to build a really correct type you want the basis with the pin hole on the opposited side of the half moon cuts. If memory serves me right these are the type for the Winchester scope mounts.

    When I built my 1941USMC sniper rifle I found a pair of these mounts. If you want I can add a picture of them.

    Later, Frank
    Bartlein Barrels

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    Just an FYI:

    Unertl Type of Scope Bases:
    http://steveearleproducts.com/scopeblocks.html

    Unertl Type Scope:
    http://swfa.com/Leatherwood-6x16-Wm-...pe-P13352.aspx

    Or you could buy an original " Unertl Scope / Lyman Scope / Winchester ". But, it will cost you a few dollars more, than the Rifle might be worth.. ?
    Classic Unertl Scopes
    http://unertl.alexweb.net/

    JP



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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    there is a wealth of information here, as always.

    i took a quick road trip with in laws and new baby so have been away for a few days.

    sandwarrior - thanks, those links are fantastic. i've done a lot of web searching and never pulled those links up. nothing like period pieces to shed more light on equipment and use.

    kraig - i need to find that book. more web searching....

    frank - thanks for that information. i have seen O and E bases for sale in various web searches. do they fit onto the external diameter of an M1917 and GI barrel? if so, then a conversion from that standpoint is pretty straightforward. i do have the link for steve earle - no luck with them returning my call, however. i plan to try after the new year.

    JYPerro - yes, thank you for those links!

    i contacted the cody museum about the M1917s in their collection and had a brief but informative exchange with the curatorial assistant. he sent me a picture of one of the more interesting of the three that they have. if i can figure out how to get it on here, i will. briefly, it shows a standard action with the rear sight ears in place. the stock is cut down on the forearm so that it does not fully wrap around the barrel and ends in a surprisingly graceful cap. a ring is mounted just forward of the rear sight ears and another is mounted just forward of the receiver ring.

    more correctly, the rear ring in the picture looks like it is mounted over the front half of the rear sight wings. i cannot tell if the forward half of the rear sight ears have been milld away or not, but that is my guess. the rear end of the ears appear to be unmodified.

    there is no scope with the cody museum rifle. the barrel does not have a front sight. the forearm does not have a sling swivel or stacking swivel. the curator indicated that they did not know what scope the rifle was tested with, but the winchester A5 would have been period correct, however he does not know if the rifle was tested with the scope as he expects the rear sight ears to interfere with the scope.

    this has gotten me wondering. rather than permanently alter my M1917, i might need to look for a previously sporterized one that already has bases on it, then fix her up to look correct and put a standard stock on it. it won't be "authentic," of course, but i will be able to shoot a piece of history without destroying mine.

    i'm still digging.

    thanks, guys!


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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    Just so you know, the center to center of the bases is critical to the function of the scope.Early scopes were around 6" CtoC Later scopes are 7.2 ctoc. I may be off a bit, it's been a while sence I needed this info. Your clics rely on the proper spacing

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    thanks, atlas - yes, i've seen the number at 7.2 and 7.4 c2c. it's nice to have it confirmed. i'll pass that on to my smith.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    Just sharing an example on what " I " did , with a " Smallbore Rifle " ( 1903 Example ), which already had scope blocks/bases in place.

    http://www.snipershide.com/forum/ubb...21#Post2991421

    A photo comparison : " 4x / 10 x / 15x Unertl / Lyman : Winchester ? ", are longer & bigger scopes.

    Lyman 4x Lft end as comparison.

    JP

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    that is one hell of a sweet looking rifle rack, JYP. can't wait to get my project going and done.

    thanks for sharing!

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    frank and all - i finally heard back from steve earle. frank was correct - the O and E bases are the correct bases for both the M1917 and the M1903.

    i have a semi-sporterized 1917 that was won on a gun broker auction that should be shipping soon (fingers crossed). it has the rear sight ears milled off and has a redfield rear aperture sight in its place. it seems like a good place to start with since it is minimally modified.

    hoping the barrel is good so i don't need to get a new one ($250 or so from the CMP).

    gotta save up some more money for the unertl, too.

    but, this project is starting get up on its legs.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    Dug out my C.S. Ferris "United States Rifle Model Of 1917". Only 1.5 pages (53-54)on the sniper version. He talks about the rifles at the BBM in Cody. Says they have 30" barrels that are 1.5" diameter with extra thick and shortened stocks. They have scope blocks but no scopes. "A requirement schedule was issued June 7, 1918 for 52,635 U.S. Telescopic Sight Rifle Caliber .30, Model 1918." "The telescopic sight to be used was the telescopic musket sight, model of 1918. This was the Winchester 2.6-2.7 telescopic sight that the US Army adopted as standard in lieu of the model of 1913." The book indicates there were 189 accepted.
    It also adds: "An Eddystone sniper rifle, serial number 68336, is in the museum of the Springfield Armory National Historic Site. Senich depicts a Model 1917 Rofle wiht the Winchester A5 telescopic sight in two books. There were a number of rifles such as this made with experimental sights, some with telescopic sights, but the are not the Model 1918 Sniper rifle as discussed above."

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    The typo's in the previous post are mine, not the author of the book. My bad; late and tired but still thinking about a '17 sniper version.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    Pg 509 of "The Springfield 1903 Rifles" by William S. Brophy shows three excellent photos of different '17's wearing the Model 1918 scope. None with the large diameter barrel though. Additional photos of the scope on the Springfield Armory 1918 on pg 510. The turrets on the scope were huge. Winchester drawings of the scope on pg. 511.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    hi chuter - thanks for that information. yes, the cody museum has a couple of other 1917s, but they have telephone pole barrels and were bench rifles only, according to the curator there. he has no idea why they have those barrels and what they were testing with them but it's clear that they were not field rifles. the more interesting rifle in the cody collection has bases and rings, but no scope - the curator believes that the winchester scope would have been mounted, but he cannot definitively say that their rifle wore the winchester glass.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    Originally Posted By: chuter
    Pg 509 of "The Springfield 1903 Rifles" by William S. Brophy shows three excellent photos of different '17's wearing the Model 1918 scope. None with the large diameter barrel though. Additional photos of the scope on the Springfield Armory 1918 on pg 510. The turrets on the scope were huge. Winchester drawings of the scope on pg. 511.


    thanks! another cool book to find!

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    2_many_dogs, I found this on the "SOLD" pages of the guy i bought my 1903 donor from....

    http://www.kirkemmerich.co.uk/past-sales...-sniper-config/

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    WOW! giving me ideas. my wife hates it when i get ideas....

    thanks, basraboy.

    my donor 1917 has arrived. the barrel is pretty shot out - 26 inches of bad road - so i'll be getting a criterion barrel (krieger via CMP) for it. need for my smith to tear apart the bolt and have a look at the barrel ring to see how those have aged. it needs a repark job.

    wood needs some attending to - it's solid enough and the metal exterior is about what i would expect. it needs work, but i expected that.

    need to seriously save pennies.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    basraboy, i know you're running a 1" 8x USMC unertl. since i'm not building a "historical rifle" so much as a "vintage rifle" i am somewhat less constrained by the scope choice.

    would a 1.25" or 1.5" unertl "fit" on the O and E bases of your '03 with adequate clearance between handguard and scope bell?

    just wondering as some of these bigger bell'd unertls are actually less expensive than the 1-inchers.

    thanks.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    I haven't got the rifle in my hands yet but the USMC x8 has a 1.25" objective.

    Below is the pic from my smith looking back from the muzzle...I'd say (on the 1903 with the O and E blocks) a 2" objective may be a bit tight?

    I can measure the clearance when I collect the rifle on Saturday and get back to you.



    But.... I'm not sure how relevant the 1903 set up would be to an M1918.

    The O and E mounts are radiused to the 1903 receiver and barrel.

    Give Steve Earle a call or drop him an email and check with him on that. He also says he does custom sets.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    yes, i think the 2" is not going to work. sure looks like you have more than a 1/4 inch gap there between handguard and bell so a 1.5" should work. when you go pick up your rifle (does that mean it is done?), please let me know for sure.

    i checked with steve earle and according to him, the O and E blocks are correct for the 1917.

    thanks! and as an aside, your rifle looks absolutely beautiful.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    Thanks - the build was finished last Saturday!

    Will let you know on that clearance.....

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    AsI recall the M1917 would have the M1913 Musket scope by W&S. The Winchester was tested but not adopted for it.
    I actually saw 2 of them at a gun show over a decade ago, with a guy who specialized in sniper rifles. I wish i bought the 03 1941 USMC sniper rifle he had, but I thought $5000 was too much even though everything from but to muzzle were coreect.
    My mistake.

    before you go chopping up the P17, I am pretty sure that is what Sgt York used, not a Springfield like in the movie.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    hey, DTTR - thanks for that information.

    alas, the W&S and winchester A5 are relatively low magnification glass and my aging eyes need more magnification.

    yes, i wrestled with the moral issue of chopping up a defenseless M1917. to avoid the dilemma, i found a semi-sporterized eddystone that had the rear sight ears removed, but is otherwise stock. my conscience is clear. [img]<>/smile.gif[/img]

    to make things simple, i am building a vintage rifle rather than a historically correct rifle. hope mine comes out looking as good as basraboy's '03.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    Originally Posted By: BasraBoy
    Thanks - the build was finished last Saturday!

    Will let you know on that clearance.....


    2_m_d......that's 5/16" from the underside of the objective bell to the woodwork.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    thanks for taking the time and measuring that for me, basraboy. congrats again on taking your baby home. i'm so glad you still haven't been corrupted by the continent and still use empire units. [img]<>/laugh.gif[/img]

    so, by my calculation, i'd have about 1/16 of an inch. with a 1.5" bell, i'd be cutting it pretty tight, i figure. 1-1/4" it will be.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    Originally Posted By: 2_many_dogs
    thanks for taking the time and measuring that for me, basraboy. congrats again on taking your baby home. i'm so glad you still haven't been corrupted by the continent and still use empire units. [img]<>/laugh.gif[/img]

    so, by my calculation, i'd have about 1/16 of an inch. with a 1.5" bell, i'd be cutting it pretty tight, i figure. 1-1/4" it will be.


    I still use lb and oz too! That really confuses kids in shops when buying meat, veg, fruit etc!! Call it my personal stand against the tyranny of Brussels. [img]<>/laugh.gif[/img]

    Anyway......another issue you need to think about is how much a scope tube with external adjusters will move relative to the bolt. I hadn't thought about this too much till I started to handle the rifle the last couple of days.

    There's some more info posted on the 1903A1 thread yesterday and pics of both my rifle and dieselten's 1903 showing the clearance on both the standard 1903 and a scallop cut 1903 bolt handle....

    It may be different on a 1917, but thought I should point it out.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    tyrrany of brussels. i love it!

    regarding the bolt handle, yes - i asked my smith and he said that it'll be something we figure out once we put the glass on it. he's telling me that it is likely we'll have to do something, but he's not sure what that wil be until he sees the relationships. he's not done a 1917 conversion either!

    i had another thought on the bell clearance, too - it might be possible to take a little wood off the top of the handguard (fore and aft to account for recoil motion) to give me a bit more clearance to mount up a 1.5" bell. i'll need to take possession of the rifle (this is kalifornia) and then get the handguard off. i don't expect they are very thick, but maybe a 1/16" on just the affected area might work and not cause the handguard to crack.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    [quote=2_many_dogs]this is my first thoughts on building up an M1917 with period glass. it's not quite what i'd consider a cohesive plan, yet, tho, so i'd like to get some input from the hide experts.

    i know that there were no historical M1917 sniper rifles. there were some prototypes built designated M1918 using eastman kodak scopes, but the great war ended before that contract could gather steam and after the war springfield armory would brook no competitors.

    i have a fantastic M1917 that i'm having a devil of a time shooting. when i was younger, i could force my eyes to focus well enough to shoot straight, and mine is a shooter. however, i'm dealing with a defect in my lens that my age is starting to really have problems overcoming. i've pretty much given up shooting irons in across the course service rifle competition (still shooting under NRA rule 3.3.4 which allows glass).

    i enjoyed shooting my M1917, but the thin blade just sort of disappears on me now. thus, i'm thinking hard about having some work done to it to shoot with period glass.

    i'm thinking of drilling and tapping the receiver and barrel to accept bases in the way the unertls were mounted to the M1903s with O and E bases. basraboy's thread on building up a USMC M1903 sniper rifle has motivated me.

    yes, i know that there were no official sniper conversions with the unertl glass for the M1917, however, this would make the rifle shootable again for me and i'd like to shoot matches in the vintage sniper class.

    has anyone attempted to mount the 8x unertl onto an M1917? if so, how did you do it? are there any bases that i can buy that would work or will i need to make them myself?

    i know only a little about the P14 system and know nothing about how one would go about finding parts and modifying the receiver to accept them. however, with the greatest respect to our brit cousins, i'd like to start off and try to build an american system first.

    if putting a unertl on an M1917 is an insane idea, then, well, let me know. if there are other period alternatives i would be open to considering them, as well.

    thanks

    OK, serious note: I started Hi Power shooting with an Eddystone (1917). I also love them. But... trying to keep this in tune with the era it comes from will cost you. The Uniterlis not the greatest scope even going back to the 70's and 80's. I love the old Leopolds, but today you can find better if you want. Now I'm also getting long in the teeth, so I understand your issues. While I also want to go to Camp Perry this year with an M1A I tune and put on NM sites, I may well have a problem with that. It's really better to go with something that works. As a dear friend of mine notes about the Ugly Hammer, it isn't pretty but it's always there (handy) and it always works. A pistol and/or rifle is a tool. You want it to work for you, or at least allow it to work for you by giving it optics that helps your eyesight. Well, I guess I am rambling, but trust me, I love the 1917 also, I'd give in and mount a decent scope (modern and helpful to make the shot).

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    hey rojkoh, thanks for your thoughts. i definitely hear you. i had also thought about going down this path. what keeps me from going down that too far is that i have a couple of very nice bolt guns that have reasonably nice glass on them. rather than duplicate what i have, i want to take this in a direction that is "new" for me.

    and i also have to say, basraboy's USMC '03 looks so damned sexy, i have to go vintage, too.

    the original unertl glass was not coated. hilux is coming out with the 8x repro that is supposed to use coated lenses that should help out a little on the optical quality (i talked with a hilux rep and they promised the moon). 8x is probably right at the bottom of what i think will make my eyes work and am casting about for a 12x or 14x with the knowledge that the image will be dimmer.

    i wish you good luck at camp perry!

    on the progress front, i have finally taken possession of the rifle (delayed due to kalifornia and then the FFL getting pneumonia after SHOT). got a new criterion barrel on the way. if i can figure out how to post pics again, i'll get a few up and post progress pics.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    http://www.accumounts.com/ has the original 1917 scope mounts for the 1917 rifle.they are the only folks who make them.they come in 26.5 and 1 inch rings.

    for the long scopes using the springfield 03 mounts on the 1917 above,,hi-lux optics makes the malcom scopes approved by the cmp program for the vintage rifle program.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    thanks, dp - i've got bases and am waiting on my smith to put on a new arsenal barrel and mount bases. like most good smiths, he's buried in work. most likely will use hi-lux - real unertl glass is beyond my budget.

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    Re: building an M1917 sniper rifle

    Those mounts are for the P14 with the A5 Winny scope. Yes, they will work on the Model 1917.

    Post the pictures when your Smith is done.