I'm sold. Total and completely. The M1903A3 performed as it should, and it's a damn cannon. It kicks pretty damn hard, although not as hard as a 12 gauge shotgun. Analog Kid, myself, and my friend Ari all took turns lighting it off. To quote Ari: *BOOM* "Ouch! Holy shit! That hurt! I gotta do that again!"
I'm still feeling my shoulder this morning, but that gun is as accurate as the shooter can be. How many other machines made in 1942 still work as well as when they were made? The one problem is that the spring is worn out on the magazine, so it won't feed rounds properly, in essence making it a single shot gun for the time being. But that's OK, you don't want to kick off too many rounds in a row from it anyways. Not unless you enjoy the feeling of your shoulder being several inches behind where it SHOULD be.
We also took the girlfriend's son with us, and he went through about 300 rounds of .22 ammo with my birthday gun. This was his first time doing any kind of real shooting, and he enjoyed it quite a bit. I think I've got him hooked. The next gun for me to try is my .308 Winchester. Slowly but surely, I'm getting there. And the shotgun is getting it's tryout next Saturday, when AK and friends get together for a little high-velocity pumpkin carving. Heheheheheheheh. AK should have a digital camera with him, so he'll have pictures.
This is gonna be fun!