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#114895 Individual Reputation Point System On Machinegunboards.com

Posted by dalbert on 24 March 2012 - 09:45 PM


In case you haven't noticed, the board now features a reputation point system, which has been in place for several months.  Most members have not used it yet, so I want to make everyone aware of the parameters for its use.

Each post that you make can have reputation points awarded to it by other members. The reputation tool appears in the lower right hand corner of each post, and it you click on it, one point will be awarded to the post.  Before any reputation points are awarded to a specific post, the number in the lower right hand corner will be zero, and as points are awarded, the number will change.  At this time, I am only allowing positive reputation points.  Each member is allowed to award 3 reputation points per day, and those points cannot be applied to their own posts.

I have included everyone in the reputation point system.  You can even apply points to the moderators, or me.  Feel free to award me points, if you see fit, as I only have 2 at the moment. :blink:

If you want to see who has awarded you reputation points, you can click on the reputation point number in the lower right hand corner of your post, and the name of the person who awarded the reputation points will be displayed.

Just to clarify, points are applied to individual posts. (replies)  The originator of the thread does not receive reputation points for the original post, unless you award points to that original post.

You can see how many reputation points a member has by mousing over their name.  There are 3 levels of reputation currently:

0-19 Points: Neutral
20-49 Points: Good
50+ Points: Excellent

Please feel free to post any questions, and I hope that members will find this to be a useful tool.


David Albert
  • 11

#216038 Tiffany Money Clip

Posted by firearm on 10 February 2020 - 07:22 PM

I've had this sterling silver bill clip in a display case for the longest time.  I got it out and shot up some jpegs for all to see.  These were produced by Tiffany & Company in New York, circa 1940.  I assume that they were used as promotional items / gifts, etc. by Maguire.  Two or three people have tried to purchase it from me over the years but I liked it so much I decided to hold on to it.  This is the only one I have ever seen in the original Tiffany box.  I am curious as to what value you RKI's would put on it?  Any guesses? 

Attached Thumbnails

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#136426 Thompson SMG Disassembly, Reassembly, & Cleaning Instructions

Posted by dalbert on 15 March 2014 - 12:19 PM

This is probably a post I should have made a long time ago, but I had someone contact me today who needed Thompson Submachine Gun disassembly and reassembly instructions.  In 1941, The Armored Force School at Fort Knox, Kentucky published what I consider the best set of instructions, and I've included a download link to the pertinent sections of that vintage manual. 


These instructions apply to Model of 1921 and 1928 Thompsons, as well as the M1928A1.  They can also be used for the M1 and M1A1 versions, but some of the details won't apply.  Please be careful, and always check that the firearm is unloaded before performing any of the steps shown in these instructions.  If you are going to do a complete disassembly of the trigger group, please be especially careful when removing the pivot plate (don't use a screwdriver), so that you don't scratch up the weapon.  Wear safety glasses while performing all steps.


The 40 MB file can be downloaded at the following link:




As soon as I can, I will add a link to this thread in both the FAQ section, and the reference pinned post.


If you like this post, feel free to click on the reputation button in the lower right hand corner.




David Albert


  • 8

#84466 Thompson Box And Drum Magazine Guide

Posted by dalbert on 07 November 2008 - 08:34 PM

These materials are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws.
Copyright 2008, 2009, 2010 & 2011 © David Albert

11/7/08:  This is a work in progress.  It will take a good while to document as many box magazine and drum magazine variations as are known to exist, so it will appear very incomplete until more content is gathered.  If you would like to contribute content, please contact David Albert at dalbert@sturmgewehr.com, and I will consider your photos and descriptions for inclusion.
11/24/08: Added L-drum and C-drum verbiage, and First Pattern WPS L-drum (While watching Monday Night Football!)
11/27/08: Added Kahr L and C-drums, and Bridgeport address L-drum (While watching Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade)
11/28/08: Added previously undocumented New York address L-drum with US M1928A1 markings, and XXX magazine verbiage
11/29/08: Added Colt C-drum, 1st and 3rd Models New York Address L-drum, also section headers for Shot Magazines, and Other Drums, added XX Magazine content
11/30/08: Added 2 more XX magazine, and 2 more XXX magazine examples
12/7/08: Added 2nd Pattern WPS L-drum, and reduced size of WPS 1st Model images to make presentation more consistent, added Crosby & WPS XX magazines, and also Bridgeport L-drum with Model 1921 & 1928 Winding instructions
12/14/08: Added Shot Magazines
12/25/08: Added Numrich C-Drum text and photos that were submitted by Mike Hammer (Thanks, Mike!)  Also added blank military XX magazine picture, and updated patent date and military XX magazine pictures
1/1/09: Added West Hurley "For Export Only" L-Drum
1/25/09: Added Reproduction (Blank) L-Drum
3/16/09: Added Reproduction "Crosby" Numrich Sale Drum with "Thompson" milled off for trademark infringement reasons
4/19/09: Added 39-round West Hurley Drum
10/17/09: Added WWII Seymour L-Drum
11/1/09: Added significant box magazine content submitted by Roger Herbst
2/15/10: Added West Hurley .22 Conversion unit w/ magazine
2/26/11: Corrected WWII United Specialties Co. Bridgeport address L-Drum (was incorrectly listed as Universal Stamping Company)
9/22/12: Added British XX Magazine Storage Boxes

Thompson Box Magazines

The following section is submitted by Roger Herbst (TSMG28), who has meticulously scrutinized and documented Thompson box magazines.  His efforts here are appreciated and applauded!  

XX Magazine (20 Rounds) Types and Variations:

Colt Era XX Blank
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Colt Era XX Patent Date
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Maguire Era XX Patent Date 24-24
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Maguire Era XX Patent Date 20-24
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Auto-Ordnance XX First Version (MSCO)
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Auto-Ordnance XX Second Version Right-facing (USCO)
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Auto-Ordnance XX Second Version Left-facing (USCO) (Note reverse orientation of magazine in photo.)
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Auto-Ordnance XX Third Version (circle)
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Auto-Ordnance XX Fourth Version - This is the A-O blank magazine, and a picture of one will be posted as soon as possible.  A description of this blank magazine, in comparison to others, may be found further down in this post.

Auto-Ordnance XX Fifth Version (U)
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Sparks-Withington XX First Version (Blank)
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Sparks-Withington XX Second Version
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Sparks-Withington XX Third Version
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Crosby XX
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Seymour XX
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Worcester Pressed Steel XX Small Font
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Worcester Pressed Steel XX Large Font
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Worcester Pressed Steel XX Font Comparison
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Auto-Ordnance XXX First Version (USCO)
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Auto-Ordnance XXX Second Version Left-facing (U)
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Auto-Ordnance XXX Second Version Right-facing - The face markings are identical to the left-facing version, but are right-facing instead.  Both have the outlined U on the backstrap.  A picture will be posted ASAP.

Sparks-Withington XXX
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Crosby XXX First Version
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Crosby XXX Second Version
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Crosby XXX Third Version
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There are four different versions of Seymour Products XXX magazines.  With the exception of the second version, which is absent of punctuation marks, the collector should ignore the presence or absence of punctuation to determine versions.  The first, third and fourth versions can be found with any or all of their punctuation missing, most likely due to these very small parts of the die wearing or breaking.  An example of this is shown in the following pictures of two different First Version magazines.  Both have the comma on the second line, but one has the periods at the end of both lines and the other does not.  This is not a different version, just worn dies.

Seymour XXX First Version
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Seymour XXX First Version No Periods
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Seymour XXX Second Version
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Seymour XXX Third Version
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Seymour XXX Fourth Version
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There are three different blank XX magazines that have been identified.  The Sparks-Withington is the easiest of the three to recognize because the observation holes are placed differently from the other two.  However, since many magazines have been disassembled and reassembled in their lives, usually in large batches where the components are unlikely to get matched up again, great care needs to be taken in declaring a particular blank magazine as all original.  The following pictures show unique characteristics of the three blank magazines.

Since an A-O Blank magazine was not available to be photographed, here is a description of the unique characteristics of that magazine.  First, the radius of the front of the feed lips of the A-O Blank is much more gradual than the sharper radius of the Colt Blank.  The A-O radius is the same as versions three and five of the A-O XX magazines.  Second, the tool marks on the inside of the backstrap and its shoulders are the same as those on A-O version five.  The Colt Blank tool marks are not the same, but you may need both in front of you to make the identification easier.

All A-O followers do not have a stress relief hole punched just above the follower tab, as shown in the example below.  The other manufacturers
punched a hole in various locations just above the follower tab as can be seen in the Colt Era and Sparks-Withington examples below.

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Colt Era XX Follower
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Colt Era XX Follower - Tool Mark Inside
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Sparks-Withington XX Blank - Hole Spacing
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Sparks-Withington XX Follower
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Sparks-Withington XX Follower Closeup
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Auto-Ordnance Follower
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There are three kinds of floorplates found on Thompson magazines.  The flat, plain floorplate is standard for all but one of the XX magazines and two of the XXX magazines.  The beveled floorplate is found only on Sparks-Withington magazines, all versions.  It was apparently designed by
Sparks-Withington to make it easier to insert the floorplate into the magazine body.

The dimpled floorplate is unique to Seymour XXX magazines.  It has been observed on both third and fourth versions of magazines in the original
wrap, but it is unknown exactly when it was introduced or whether its use alternated through the versions.  So far all fourth version magazines in the wrap have been observed with the dimpled floorplate.  If anyone in the Thompson collecting community has second or first version Seymours still in the wrap with the dimpled floorplate, please contact TSMG28 on this board.

Plain Floorplate
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Beveled Floorplate
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Dimpled Floorplate
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The Israelis inherited a number of Thompson magazines from the British, mostly the 20-round XX version.  They stamped two marks on each, though the depth and location of the stamps varies considerably.  Most of these magazines have also been green parkerized, but examples can be found that are still blued.  Some magazines also have the witness holes soldered as modified by Australians/British armorers in the desert of North Africa during WWII.

The mark on the right side is the tradition "Tza'dik" sign. That's the first letter of the word "Tsa'va" which means Army. This sign (in various forms) is supposed to appear on anything owned by the Israeli military. The mark on the left side is believed to be the letter "Chet" which is the first letter of the word "Chi'mush", which stands for armament. That's the division that handles all the purchases, processes and logistics behind weaponry.

Israeli Military Stamps
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The "V for Victory" sign was added to some XXX magazines during 1943 as an encouragement at a time when the war effort was not going well for the U.S. This V can be found on both Crosby and Seymour XXX magazines.

V Stamp on XXX
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The first batch of Crosby XXX magazines had a little problem when they tried to use them in the new M1 Thompson.  The front of the feed lips stuck out too far from the magazine body and created an interference that caused feed problems in the M1 model.  The Augusta Arsenal came up with a modification that allowed these magazines to be used, essentially grinding 0.060" from the front of the feed lips.  That modification can be found on the picture below.

Crosby XXX Grind Modification
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These magazines were made for the European style (rifle-like) Thompson submachine guns manufactured by Birmingham Small Arms, Ltd., first in 1926 and later in 1929.  These magazines exist in four different calibers: 7.63mm MAUSER, 30 MAUSER (identical to the 7.63mm, but the English designation of the round), 9mm PARABELLUM and 9mm BERGMANN.  This is an example of the 30 MAUSER.  Not all versions have the BSA stacked rifles symbol.

BSA Magazine - 30 MAUSER
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United Defense Supply Corporation

These magazines were not made for the Thompson, but rather for the United Defense Model 42 submachine gun.  However, these mags were made by The Seymour Products Company, one of the main manufacturers of the Thompson magazines.  They also can be used in a Thompson that has been modified to fire 9mm rounds like 9mm Parabellum.  Other than their smaller size, they are almost identical to the Thompson XX magazines.

UDM42 Magazine
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Many thanks to Roger Herbst (TSMG28) for the preceding section!  The following section is the original Thompson XX and XXX magazine content of this pinned post, with some content not included above.  This older magazine section will be removed once the necessary images are formatted and added to Roger's section above.  

A variety of XX Magazines:

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Above Images David Albert and Mike Sig Collections
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Ron & Kelly Brock Collection
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Arch Stanton Collection

Sorry about the condition of some of the examples above, such as the rusty Bridgeport magazine with the reverse orientation markings.   I decided to include it, though, since it's the only one I have available.  

XX Magazines Featuring Soldered Witness Holes:

Do your magazines have solder in the witness holes that run along the side of the magazine?  If they do, they were more than likely involved in the British North Africa campaign during WWII.  British armorers filled the holes with solder to prevent sand from penetrating into the magazines.  Such XX magazines are fairly common.  Many magazines can also be found with evidence of previous soldering, but the solder was removed.  My recommendation is to leave the solder in place, as it is a part of the magazine's historical past.  

Here are some examples of solder filled magazines:

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XXX Magazine (30 Rounds) Types and Variations:

XXX magazines were adopted after tests in late 1941, and were intended to replace the 50-round "L" drum, which was difficult to reload on the fly, and cumbersome to carry.  The XXX magazine also became the favored magazine for the wartime Models M1 and M1A1 Thompson.  At least 3 different manufacturers produced the XXX magazine during WWII.

Four variations of markings on Seymour XXX magazines:  

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Image courtesy Deerslayer

Three variations of markings on Crosby XXX magazines:

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Image courtesy Deerslayer

Two Bridgeport XXX magazine examples:

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David Albert Collection

XVIII Shot Magazines (18 Rounds)

.45 ACP Shotshells were manufactured for use in Thompsons, and Auto-Ordnance marketed them as a more humane method of riot control.  Three different shot magazines are known to exist, with one being a prototype, handmade magazine of single piece body construction. The prototype magazine is not marked in any way, and could have been made for either shotshell, or .45 Remington-Thompson cartridge use. (In the Model of 1923 Thompson Submachine Gun)

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Above Images Mike Sig Collection, Photos by David Albert

Auto-Ordnance West Hurley .22 Conversion Unit w/Magazine:

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Above Image courtesy wwiifirearms Collection

Thompson Drum Magazines

L Drum (50 Rounds) Types and Variations:

Thompson "L" drums are a historical study within themselves.  Many manufacturers and variations exist, made from the 1920's to the present, with a wide variety, particularly during the WWII era.

New York Address, 1st Model L-Drum:

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This drum features a nickeled rotor.

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Above Images: GIJive Collection

New York Address, 3rd Model L-Drum:

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This drum features a nickeled rotor.

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Above Images: GIJive Collection

New York Address, "U.S. Model of 1928 A1" Marked L-Drum:

This drum variation has just recently been documented.  It features the following stamping
in between the rivets on the front faceplate:



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Note that this drum is missing its retention spring.

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This drum was probably manufactured or updated with the new stamping, and
refinished by Worcester Press Stamping Company during the 1936-39 time frame.  

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The drum features a nickeled rotor.

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Above Images: Private Collection, Photos by David Albert

Pre-War, First Pattern Worcester Pressed Steel (WPS) L-Drum:

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Most examples of this type of drum have blued rotors, but some have also been encountered with nickeled rotors.

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Above Images: David Albert Collection (Former)

Pre-War, Second Pattern Worcester Pressed Steel (WPS) L-Drum:

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This type drum features a blued rotor.

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Above Images Courtesy Snipershot1944

WWII Universal Metal Stamping Co., Bridgeport Address L-Drum with Model of 1921 and Model of 1928 Winding Instructions:

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Above Images: Ron & Kelly Brock Collection

WWII Seymour Products Co. L-Drum:

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WWII United Specialties Co., Bridgeport Address L-Drum:

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Above Images: David Albert Collection

Reproduction "Crosby" L Drum: (This is one of the first batch of 200 new L drums imported from China in 2006.)

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David Albert Collection

Original packaging for reproduction "Crosby" L-Drum:

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David Albert Collection

Reproduction (Blank) L-Drum: (This is a drum from the second, current batch of new L drums imported from China.  After some legal issues were raised about the use of the Thompson name on the first 200 drums as pictured above, the subsequently imported drums were not stamped with the previously seen Thompson and Crosby references on the drum.  This drum is an example of the type of drum being currently sold by a company named Fortune Lot.)

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Ron & Kelly Brock Collection

Reproduction "Crosby" L Drum with "Thompson" Removed: (These are Taiwanese reproductions that were apparently made based to the first specifications, but were altered due to trademark infringement on the name "Thompson," and had that name milled off of the face plate.)

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Above Images: David Albert Collection

Auto-Ordnance (West Hurley) "For Export Only" L-Drum:

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Above Images: TAS1921AC Collection

Auto-Ordnance (Kahr) L-Drum:

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Above Images: David Albert Collection

C Drum (100 Rounds) Types and Variations:

"C" Drums were manufactured in 3 generations, the first during the 1920's, which are popularly known as "Colt Era" drums.  Such drums are very valuable today, with prices usually in the $5,000 to $7,000 range.  Numrich Arms (Auto-Ordnance of West Hurley, NY) marketed a "C" drum during the 1980's that is known for normally inferior quality out of the box.  Most Numrich "C" drums must be fine tuned by Merle Bitikofer ("The Drum Doctor") in order to function reliably.  Kahr Arms (Auto-Ordnance) currently markets a "C" drum that has demonstrated fairly reliable results out of the box so far with Thompson Submachine Guns.

Colt C-Drum:

Original Colt production C-Drums were individually serial numbered on both sides, as demonstrated on the example drum below.  

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Above Images: GIJive Collection

Auto-Ordnance (Numrich) C-Drum:

These drums were produced by Numrich in 1985 and were the first C-Drums produced in many decades since the Original Colt C-Drums.  The Numrich C-Drums are sturdily built, but unfortunately very few of them work properly right out of the box. Spring strength was the primary problem. Other problems existed with the inner rails, which were somewhat improved with later serial numbered drums off the production line. Many of these drums have already had their springs replaced, and innards tuned by Merle Bitkofer and now work beautifully. If you find one of these drums and are interested in purchasing, contact Merle with the serial number, as he keeps records on these drums, and he can probably tell you if it's been overhauled and tuned or not.  (Merle's contact info can be found on the FAQ page)

Characteristics of these drums are: Serial numbered, (serial numbers less than 1000 have a zero prefix, i.e. 0186), blued rotor, ribs on the faceplate.  (Just like WWII drums) They have winding instructions and a Thompson bullet logo on the drum face at the six o' clock position. The stud holding the winding key to the body is solid.

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Above Text and Images: Mike Hammer Collection

Auto-Ordnance (Kahr) C-Drum:

This drum was manufactured by Kahr in 2007.  Some Kahr drums are serial numbered on both sides, and it appears that dual numbering was discontinued soon after production began, as with the example below, which is only numbered on one side.

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Above Images: David Albert Collection

Other Drums (10 & 39 Rounds):

Auto-Ordnance (Numrich) 39- Round Drum:

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full auto 45 Collection
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Above Images: Z3BigDaddy Collection

Miscellaneous Related Items

British XX Magazine Storage Boxes:

These storage boxes have either a brown color, or olive drab color, and slightly different steciling.  Both color versions are seen below.

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Above Images bmarvin Collection

These materials are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws.
Copyright 2008, 2009, 2010 & 2011 © David Albert
  • 7

#82566 Reproduction Thompson Accessories Reference Guide

Posted by dalbert on 23 August 2008 - 02:04 PM

These materials are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws.
Copyright 2008, 2009, 2010 © David Albert


This list is provided as a reference for collectors who may consider purchasing certain Thompson accessories which have been reproduced in the past, or are currently reproduced. This is a living list that will be updated periodically. Some reproduction items have been marked in a way as to provide easy identification, while many are not marked in this manner. Both types will be listed here.

The list is not meant to discredit anyone who produces an unmarked reproduction, but it exists to aid a collector who might encounter such an item being represented as original. Reproduction items represented as originals, whether purposeful or not, is a problem that extends into many collector communities, including those outside of firearms. Manufacturers have the ability to change this trend through the use of makers marks and dates on their products, and are highly encouraged to mark their reproduction items so that they cannot easily be mistaken for, or represented as originals.

Many Thompson reproductions exist that are highly sought after, such as finely crafted Thompson cases. Some beautiful reproductions exist that are well known currently, but in the future, they might blur the line between original and reproduction. This list exists to help identify the differences between the originals and reproductions.

If you would like to submit an item for inclusion, please e-mail David Albert at dalbert@sturmgewehr.com. A picture and description will be necessary for consideration. Thank you for your contributions to this thread -- your participation is appreciated by myself and other collectors.

Please note: Also included in this pinned post is The American Thompson Association (TATA) Reproduction Thompson Item Standard, which provides an avenue and standard for marking of reproduction Thompson items.

This reproduction item pinned post is organized as follows:

1. Paper Items
2. Thompson Spare Parts
3. Cloth Items and Web Gear
4. Metal Accessories
5. Thompson Cases
6. The American Thompson Association (TATA) Reproduction Thompson Item Standard

Update: In August 2010, David Albert presented a lecture at The American Thompson Association Show and Shoot, sponsored by the Tracie Hill family. The lecture presentation is now the most updated resource documenting reproduction Thompson items. It will be updated periodically. The presentation is available for download by visiting the following link on this board:


Reproduction Thompson Paper Items

1. 1923 Auto-Ordnance Catalog:

The 1923 Auto-Ordnance Catalog is one of the oldest reproduction Thompson items in existence. Original examples are extremely rare, and many collectors who believe their catalog original are mistaken. In the early 1960's Numrich Arms reprinted the 1923 Auto-Ordnance Catalog with excellent detail, including raised lettering on the cover. A detailed comparison of a reproduction catalog to an original is contained in the following post by dalbert on 1/28/2007:

http://www.machinegu...hl=1923 catalog

Rare, Original 1923 Auto-Ordnance Catalog:

David Albert Collection

2. 4th Edition TSMG Handbooks:

This is an example of early marking of a reproduction item to indicate to future collectors that it is a reproduction. Frontier Press published reproductions of the 1929 Catalog, as well as the 4th Edition Handbook of the Thompson Submachine Gun in 1969. These are easy to recognize, because inside the front cover is printed "© 1969 Frontier Press."

Here is a scan of the front cover of the reproduction 4th Edition Handbook:


Here is a scan of the Frontier Press marking that appears on the second page:

Above Images David Albert Collection

3. 1929 Auto-Ordnance Catalogs:

The 1929 Auto-Ordnance Catalog in original form is an awesome example of early Thompson literature, and is printed on oversize paper, measuring 9" x 12". Only one known reproduction exists that matches the size of the original. That particular reproduction was published by Ray Riling Arms Co., and is easy to spot, because the publisher printed their name on the inside, and numbered them from 1 to 500. Some originals also feature E.E. Richardson distributor information at the bottom of the cover page.

Here is a picture of the maker's mark inside the Ray Riling Arms Co. reproduction 1929 Auto-Ordnance Catalog:

Tracie Hill collection

Another reproduction is marked to indicate so, and was published by Frontier Press in 1969. The repro catalog measure 8 1/2" x 11", as it was printed in normal paper size. The title page is marked "© 1969 Frontier Press" in the lower right hand corner. One other way to tell at a glance if it is original is to note whether the ink is brown or black. Originals were printed in black ink. Reproductions also have a "2nd generation" appearance to the illustrations, while the originals feature crisp, plate printing.

Here is a picture of the Frontier Press reproduction 1929 Auto-Ordnance Catalog:


Here is a picture of the reproduction marking at the bottom right of the title page:

Above Images David Albert Collection

4. Instruction Sheet Envelopes:

A reproduction was made of the Thompson Instruction Sheet and Envelope sometime in the 1980's or early 1990's, produced by a member of this board. These are pretty easy to identify as reproductions by the measurement of the envelope.

The photo below shows an original on top, and the larger reproduction version on the bottom. The original measures 5 1/4" x 8". The reproduction measures 9 1/8" x 5 15/16". Additionally, the original envelopes appear older in style, and the example in my collection has a manufacturer's marking on the reverse of the envelope as follows:

Columbian Natural Clasp No. 45N
Pat. 1,290,083 Pat. 1,593,040
The United States Envelope Co. Springfield, Mass.
5 1/4 x 8

Additionally, the font and spacing are different, with the reproduction font being a more modern style.

David Albert Collection

5. 1936 Auto-Ordnance Catalogs:

There are 4 versions of the 1936 Auto-Ordnance Catalog. Actually, the first catalog of this style was produced sometime around 1934, but the 3 later catalogs of the same design bear a 1936 date. Numrich Arms has reprinted the catalog frequently, and there is a telltale characteristic that can be used to identify the later reproductions. If the trigger of the bottom Thompson illustrated on the front of the catalog does not intersect the target line, then it is a reproduction.

Here is a link to an example of a reproduction 1936 Auto-Ordnance Catalog:
(Notice how the trigger of the bottom Thompson does not intersect the target line)


Here is a link to an example of an original 1936 Auto-Ordnance Catalog:
(Notice how the trigger of the bottom Thompson does intersect the target line)


6. Blue 1940 Auto-Ordnance Thompson Handbooks:

All 1940 Auto-Ordnance Handbooks with a blue cover are reproductions of unknown origin.

Here is a link to an example of a blue reproduction 1940 Auto-Ordnance Handbook.


7. Gale and Polden Manuals - The Thompson Mechanism Made Easy:

Gale and Polden published 2 versions of a Thompson manual during World War II for British Home Guard units. They were excellent manuals with high quality pictures. Both originals have orange covers, with the first being a medium orange color with a pronounced embossed pattern, sort of like a fingerprint, on the cover stock. The second version had a heavy construction paper cover in a lighter color orange, without an embossed pattern. Reproductions have been published in a bright orange color (almost fluorescent), and there is also a version with a red cover currently available. The reproduction versions are second generation copies of the originals, and while their quality is good, the reproduction of several of the images is very obviously inferior to the originals.

Here is a link to a scan of a reproduction Gale and Polden Thompson manual:
(Notice the bright orange cover color)


Here is a link to the parts diagram in an original Gale and Polden Thompson manual:
(Notice the definition of the picture, such as where the grip mount meets the frame)


Here is a link to the same parts diagram in the reproduction Gale and Polden Thompson manual:
(Notice the loss of definition)


8. TM 9-1215 - Technical Manual for M1928A1 Thompson Submachine Gun, March 1, 1942:

Any edition of TM 9-1215 for the M1928A1 Thompson Submachine gun dated March 1, 1942 that features the image of a Thompson on the cover is a reproduction. These technical manual copies are probably the most common Thompson reproduction item in existence.


Reproduction Spare Parts

1. Colt Thompson Spare Parts:

This listing is intended to provide awareness regarding potential reproduction Colt Thompson spare parts. With the very high price of original Colt Thompsons, parts sets, and individual spare parts, it should be noted that some WWII parts are known to have have been modified by individuals to look like Colt parts. Such efforts as welding over the manufacturer marks, re-machining, re-bluing, and otherwise modifying the part to appear to be original Colt have occurred. These parts may appear to be new old stock. There is no universal way to detect these. In general, provenance, and the number of parts present for sale are some ways to better guarantee originality, but the buyer should be very careful, and if the price is high, and the deal does not "feel right,", then the buyer should beware that the item might not be original.

2. Remington Anchor Marked Buttstocks:

Original Colt Thompson buttstocks were made by Remington, and marked with a characteristic anchor stamping at the front end. As of at least December 2009, a reproduction, unfinished buttstock has been observed for sale in the market that is absent any markings to differentiate it from an original. I approached the seller about marking the stocks out of sight with a maker's mark to aid in their identification as reproductions, but no response was made to the request, and at this point, these stocks have entered the market, and collectors will have to use common sense and experience to determine if any "Colt Thompson" buttstock is truly original. These new stocks will probably not be prevalent, and the ability to easily determine their status as a reproduction will most likely remain fairly easily discernible in the short term, but their status as reproductions may blur with time, and anyone purchasing a buttstock should remain aware of these reproductions. A couple of characteristics that were observed by "full auto 45" on the board about the reproduction tocks are the rough "almost hand cuts" on the butt plate area that appear to be chiseled, and also the mill marks where the slide goes in are rougher than normal. Original stocks are not as rough around the edges in both these areas.

3. Flat Ejectors:

A reproduction M1921/28 flat ejector is currently marketed for $60 from two sources. It is a well made part, and is useful as a spare, replacement, or installed in a display Thompson. There are slight differences between the originals and reproductions that can aid in identification as detailed in the photos.

The original flat ejector in the photo was made by Savage. (hence the S) Colt ejectors are unmarked. Note the milling marks on the reproduction ejector that are perpendicular to the long profile of the ejector. (Photo by Reconbob)


4. 1921 Actuators:

A few years ago, some unmarked 1921 style actuators of Swedish manufacture were offered for sale as pilot/actuator/spring sets for about $400. Most were blued, and at least one was left "in the white," due to bad knurling, as seen in the picture links.




A company by the name of E.F. Precision also produced about 200 of a 1921 actuator that is difficult to tell from an original, except that the knob checkering was made at a 60 degree angle, versus the original 90 degree angle of Colt actuators. (The preceding information, and the picture below were supplied by Doug Richardson)


Doug Richardson currently produces 1921 actuators that are as close to the original Colt actuators as possible, and they are marked with an "R" as his manufacturing mark on the side of the actuator.

5. Lyman "L" Type Rear Sights:

Original, adjustable Lyman rear sights command a premium price as replacements for West Hurley rear sights, or for display on dummy Thompsons. Most of the Russian parts sets contain the original Lyman sights, which can be sold separately for $200-$300. As a result, certain sellers have resorted to making a reproduction "L" type sight to include in their parts sets, so they can offer the original, adjustable Lyman sights for sale separately. By doing so, they are still able to sell "complete parts sets." The "L" type sights were introduced as a cost and time saving measure for ease of manufacture during WWII. The reproduction "L" sights are stamped "Lyman," but they exhibit manufacturing techniques that were not available during WWII. Some characteristics of the sights are that they appear unused, and the "Lyman" marking is deeper than on the originals. The sights are blued and polished, and they do not have the light checkering around the aperture that is present on most WWII examples. They have very clean edges, because they were more than likely cut with a laser.

The following are comparison pictures of original and reproduction Lyman "L" type rear sights:

Original Lyman aperture is checkered:

Reproduction "Lyman" is not checkered:

Original Lyman marking:

Another Original Lyman marking:
Photo courtesy TD

Reproduction Lyman marking:

In this photo note the rounded corner of the sight. (red arrow) This original
sight has a corner round that goes 90 degrees encompassing the full corner.
You can compare it to the contours of the reproduction Lyman sight above.

In this photo of 3 original sights you can see the rough edge left from
pressing or stamping the part from a sheet of steel. The edge has the
appearance of a fracture line and you will see an edge like this on any
stamped steel part unless the edge is machined, polished, etc.

The sights in the photo below have a much smoother edge which is the type
of edge produced when cutting with a laser. It is a cut edge, not a fracture

Reproduction Cloth Items and Web Gear

1/03/10 - Please note! If you are considering the purchase of a WWII era "original" article of web gear, please be aware of a seller on Ebay who is marketing ink stamps that duplicate some original manufacturer marks, and also original government marks such as "USMC." I can see no reason other than intended deception for the existence and dissemination of these new stamps, and I want to alert as many colllectors as possible to their existence. Examples of the stamps include "USMC," "US," "Boyt 42," "1942," and various others. A reproduction stamping of "B.B. Inc" from a different seller has also been observed in combination with a WWII date, applied to some of the Russian Lend-Lease Thompson 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouches.

1. Kerr Slings:

The Sportsman's Guide, International Military Antiques, and What Price Glory currently sell reproduction mustard colored Kerr slings that are convincingly close to the originals. Some of the reproduction slings are marked "U.S.," perpendicular to the sling. Many of these slings also have areas of light rust on the metal parts, which is also a characteristic of some originals. The new reproduction slings prompt a new level of awareness that should be taken when considering an "original" sling purchase.

The pictures below illustrate the known differences between original and reproduction slings. The key point in identifying a reproduction sling appears to be the presence of split rivets. Out of 8 original slings observed, none demonstrated split rivets, and all rivets covered the holes completely and neatly. Reproductions observed all had split rivets, and some did not completely cover the holes. It is uncertain whether the split rivet characteristic is a metallurgical difference, or perhaps a better rivet swage die was used on the originals. Originals did not have gold colored hardware, such as the reproduction sling shown on the right.

Above Images Bridgeport28A1 Collection

2. Action Covers:

International Military Antiques and at least one other source are currently selling reproduction Thompson action covers. Most of the originals are very fragile, stained, and have stiff canvas with verdigris on the brass snaps. The reproductions are brand new, and are stamped "A.V.S. 1943" on the inside of the cover, as pictured below.

David Albert Collection

3. Canvas Drum and Magazine Pouches:

In the 1970's, canvas drum and magazine pouches were reintroduced by Numrich/Auto-Ordnance. They produced a series of dark green nylon pouches for C and L drums, and XXX magazines. These are still available and are useful for the shooter and collector alike. Around the late 1990's, Sarco, IMA and others reproduced the canvas L drum, XX five cell, and the XXX three cell pouches of the WWII period for reenactors. Quality is good and the weave of the canvas is such that they look slightly different than original examples. Collectors should remain aware of the price differences. It is important for collectors to recognize the differences between reproductions/fakes and originals. Values for an original can be several hundred dollars, versus a few dollars for a fake. "Wharton MFG, Co" produces a brand new reproduction pouch made by a company by the name of Bayonet Canvas Co. This company runs a web site at www.bayonetinc.com. They have a reproduction item marking standard that can be applied to anyone making reproduction items. Bayonet Canvas states "We mark all of our gear with two different maker marks which are totally fake and we also stamp our company name and the year the item was made in some hidden spot on the gear, this is so if you know what your looking at you won’t get ripped off by some scam artist saying it is a mint original piece. Here are the maker marks we use."

"Bayonet Canvas Co."
"Wharton Mfg, Co."

It is refreshing to see someone making reproduction equipment who is proud enough to put their own marks on the gear and to stand up and be counted. This is a practice that many other reproduction manufacturers could learn from and apply to their own products. (Canvas drum and magazine pouch reproduction section courtesy of Tracie Hill)

A Few Words About Reproduction Canvas Items:

Several vendors reproduce and/or sell selected Thompson canvas items, mostly for the WWII reenacting market. While useful and authentic in appearance, they can add confusion to the collector. Some are marked similarly to original WWII products, and without knowing which marks belong to reproductions, the collector could end up buying a reproduction represented, or mistaken for, an original. For a collector to understand the scope of reproduction canvas items currently marketed, they should familiarize themselves with the following vendors, all of whom have an online presence.

All Made Ups
At The Front
Bayonet Inc.
Epic Militaria
I.M.A. (International Military Antiques)
Pacific Canvas & Leather (They make reproductions of the "COVER THOMPSON SUB-MACHINE GUN CAL. .45 D50268" for full and semi-auto Thompsons, which they call "Contour Cases.")
The Sportsman's Guide
Sunshine Exports (India Manufacturer, makes 5-cell XX Thompson Magazine Pouches and 3-Cell Reising Pouches)
What Price Glory
WWII Impressions

Here is a list of known reproduction maker's marks:

A.P.Co. 1943 (Observed on a Thompson Magazine Pouch, and a canteen cover, both marketed as repros)
Bayonet Canvas Co.
E.M. Saddlery Co. 1942
Hoff Mfg. Co. 1942 (Observed on reproduction M1911 Magazine Pouch)
K&S Co. 1942 (Chinese Manufacturer, observed on 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouch - They also make a 5-Cell XXX Magazine Pouch)
Medcorp Saddle Co.
Medcorp Saddlery Co.
Wharton Mfg, Co.
WPG Canvas Co. (What Price Glory maker's mark)

A company called "At The Front" markets many high quality, general WWII reproduction web accessories which the collector should remain keenly aware of, including one Thompson Magazine Bag. Here are some of the At The Front reproduction maker markings:

Crawford Canvas Co. 1942 (This marking appears on their reproduction Thompson Magazine Bag)
Crawford Tent & Awning Co., Manufactured in 1942
Crawford Tent Co. 1942

(The above marks should not be confused with "Crawford Mfg. Co., Inc.," who manufactured some canvas products during WWII. The picture below shows an original marking on a musette bag manufactured by that company in 1941.)
Image Courtesy Roscoe Turner

Harian 1944 (Harian may have been an OEM, but At The Front markets a reproduction U.S. Assault Vest with their name as the maker's mark, so exercise caution with determination of originality of items encountered bearing this name.)
Kirkman Mfg. 1941, 1942
Langdon Tent & Awning Co. 1942 (Langdon was an OEM, but At The Front markets a reproduction M1928 Haversack with their name as the maker's mark, so exercise caution with determination of originality of items encountered bearing this name.)
SEMS Inc. 1942

Please educate yourself as much as possible about available reproductions when considering the purchase of an "original" canvas item. Some reproduction items are already being mistaken for originals, as can be seen on the French website below, which is a guide to U.S. web equipment, and lists Crawford as an OEM. (From the "At The Front" website, Crawford (and Kirkman) are apparently the last names of two of the employees who currently make the reproduction canvas items)


Another online retailer to remain aware of is "What Price Glory." They serve the WWII reenacting hobby with many high quality reproductions, and they are not prone to marking their equipment by an easily identifiable maker's mark. A collector should familiarize themselves with their online inventory, where claims such as "These reproductions are virtually indistinguishable from originals" are made, and are confusingly true. The company markets one reproduction WWII Thompson 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouch, for which I do not have an example to compare. If anyone has purchased one, and would like to share pictures, I will post them here. They also market reproduction Kerr slings.

I thought it would be interesting to post a statement that a manufacturer of reproduction canvas items in India features on their website. This is from Sunshine Exports, and gives us a perspective on the ease with which reproduction canvas items can be procured, ending up in the marketplace for collectors to determine originality.

Their website states: "We are manufacturing all kinds of bags, pouches, cases, covers, belts and other accessories used by soldiers, police and other forces to carry their beholdings and equipments. These are made of industrial fabrics such as canvas, duck, belting cloth etc. Special craftsmanship and skill is required for such kind of fabrication and so we have expertese in this. All the articles are very exclusive and can be custom made as per requirement. Our directors are manufacturing of Industrial Fabrics since 1972 and supplying to many buyers in India and Nepal. We fabricate articles made of Industrial Fabrics as per drawings and specification and can also develop sample looking to the buyers requirements from R& D department."

Reproduction Magazine Pouch Warning Message courtesy of Roscoe Turner

This past weekend I removed magazines that had been stored in a reproduction pouch in my safe. After removing that I found that they had rusted in the pouch. Nothing usual about that except it appeared to be more from a reaction to the chemical dye used in the material than from moisture. I can all but rule out moisture due to the fact these pouches were stored in a safe using a Golden Rod that keeps the humidity at a safe level. Magazines that were stored in original pouches did not show any signs of rust including those that had been in the safe a number of years.

Being in the reproduction business after a conversation with the forum owner I had requested these pouches from a supplier in India to judge their authenticity and quality. After determining that these pouches could not be confused with originals I used them to store my range magazines. These magazines had been wiped down with G96 and stored in the pouches only a few weeks. The rust was very deep and in spots on all sides of the magazines. The pouches had remained on a book shelf for a number of months before I used them for the magazine storage and there was no way they could have gotten wet from where they were.

The pouches I have are identical to those sold by IMA and a number of other companies. I would not leave magazines in those pouches without a barrier such as wax paper.

The preceding message courtesy of Roscoe Turner

Here is an example of a reproduction L-Drum pouch, compared to an original. These reproductions were recently sold by The Sportsman's Guide, and other sources.

Photo courtesy Bridgeport28A1

The light colored, reproduction canvas L-drum covers appear to have been washed, and exposed to metal to produce rust, which lends an artificially aged appearance.

Photo courtesy Bridgeport28A1

Reproduction Metal Accessories

1. Metal Spare Parts Container:

If you are considering purchasing an "original" metal spare parts container for a Model of 1921 Thompson Submachine Gun, you should study as many as possible prior to your purchase. Originals with parts included often sell for $6K+. A newly made metal spare parts container is currently on the market that very closely resembles the original, and costs about $250. The new boxes can be mistaken for originals. No markings on the boxes indicate they are reproduction items.


Inside both an original, and a reproduction Spare Parts Container: (Original on bottom)


An observed difference is illustrated in the pictures below. The rivet that holds the box latching mechanism appears smaller, and perhaps hand fitted to the original, while the reproduction box rivet is larger, more rounded, and taller in profile.


2. Taiwanese Crosby L-Drums:

Around 2006, a Taiwanese company was contracted by an American company to reproduce L-Drums, and about 200 were produced and sold initially. The drums worked well, and were marked in the same manner as the World War II Crosby drums. The drums are blued, and their markings appear slightly less crisp and deep when compared to original Crosby drums. After some controversy regarding the markings, subsequent drum markings were changed, an example of which I do not have currently. The drum in the picture below arrived well-oiled, inside two plastic bags, packaged in the fiber-board box pictured. Apparently these drums were not internally greased at the factory, which is another characteristic which may aid in identification. The newer versions of these drums sell for around $170 currently.

David Albert Collection

Here are some links to the reproduction Crosby L-Drum markings:



3. Long Type Thompson Cleaning Rods:

A very well made "long type" Thompson cleaning rod is currently marketed for $110 that appears almost identical to the original. It is a reproduction of the type of cleaning rod found in the top of FBI Thompson cases.

An initial comparison was made of one original, and one reproduction "long type" cleaning rod. The cleaning rod at the top of the picture is the original, and the one on the bottom is the reproduction. Subtle differences were observed in profile, internal measurements, and most noticeably, the position and internal shape of the slot. Cleaning%20Rod%20compare.JPG

4. Nickel Oilers:

Original nickel oilers from the Colt era are desirable collector items. During World War II, similar oilers with a black crinkle finish were manufactured, and are readily available today. At some point, probably on multiple occasions, someone took WWII era oilers, removed the black finish, and nickeled them to appear similar to the Colt era nickel oilers. The original oilers have a distinct "Made In USA" stamp on them, located at the ring around the top of the oiler, where the cap can be removed. Most World War II era oilers also have the "Made In USA" stamp, but it is much less distinct.

Here are two photos of original nickel oilers:
Photo courtesy gijive
Photo courtesy gijive

This photo shows a World War II era oiler in the front that has been bead blasted and nickeled. An original oiler is pictured behind it. The difference in size is due to the photo perspective; they are the same size.
Photo courtesy gijive

Some other comparison photos:
Photo courtesy gijive
Photo courtesy gijive

Reproduction Thompson Cases

Several reproduction Thompson FBI style cases, and other styles exist that are currently manufactured on a limited basis by some very talented individuals for collectors. These cases are sought after, and most appear fairly new, and are unlikely to be mistaken for an original of 70+ years ago. Swetnam was an original manufacturer, and their maker label has been reproduced and used on the newer cases to add to their authenticity. Some original cases have also been repaired, and may appear fairly new, depending upon the level of restoration. When shopping for an original case, provenance should be considered, as well as common sense. Original cases can cost up to 10x the price of a reproduction case.

Robert Necessary has manufactured reproduction Thompson FBI, Police, Alabama, and Bank Guard style cases since the 1970's. All cases Bob has manufactured over the years have his signature under the felt, but it would require removal of the felt to verify. Most of his cases feature a maker's mark sticker as follows:


A reproduction Police Thompson case by Robert Necessary:

More cases by Robert Necessary can be viewed at the following link: (Select "Slide Show" in upper right hand corner)

The American Thompson Association (TATA) Reproduction Thompson Item Standard

The American Thompson Association is a group of collectors dedicated to preserving the history, collecting, and promoting the safe operation of legal Thompson Submachine Guns. The club has a responsibility to future collectors, and recognizes that many artifacts and accessories associated with the Thompson are reproduced, or have been reproduced in the past. As a result, TATA assumes a stewardship role for future collectors, who, upon encountering reproduction items now and in the future, may not be able to reasonably determine their originality. This can have the effect of reducing collector value of original specimens, as well as present unintended (or intended) ethical issues among the Thompson collector community.
The American Thompson Association adopts a standard consisting of marking any new Thompson Submachine Gun reproduction items with a name or other distinguishable identifying mark that indicate the manufacturing entity, and at least the year of manufacture. The marking should be easily visible, and made in a manner that the item can be readily identifiable as a reproduction, such as die stamping in metal, firmly stamped wood markings, readily accessible publisher marks inside the front page of a paper item, permanently painted markings on canvas material, or other reasonable and permanent marking method. (An example for stock markings is to mark such items under the buttplate, and on top of the grip, as these are already standard methods, and will not detract cosmetically from their presentation on a Thompson.)

TATA members must comply to the standard, and any reproduction item made by a member after notification of the adoption of the new standard in the club newsletter should be marked according to the TATA reproduction marking standard. (Failure to do so could effect membership status)

Method of Introduction for Acceptance:

Items may be presented to the TATA Board by members or non-members (via live sample, or high resolution (300dpi or better) photo or scan that details the product effectively) for inclusion on an online list that details them for public access. (This list currently resides in a pinned post at the top of the Thompson board at Machinegunboards.com) Items are presented to the TATA Board via e-mail to the TATA President or Vice President, who will convene the board online via e-mail or telephone within 60 days of receipt of a request for inclusion. A list consisting of 3 categories of Thompson reproduction items will be maintained:

A. New reproduction Thompson items that conform to TATA marking standard, to include known manufacturer information.
B. Existing reproduction items that conform to TATA marking standard, to include known manufacturer information.
C. Reproduction Thompson items that do not conform to TATA marking standard, to include known manufacturer information.

At a later time to be determined, once greater experience has been gained with managing a marking standard, TATA will present their standard to the NRA as a potential best practice. The standard may also be introduced to other NRA affiliated collector organizations who might want to adopt a similar standard. (End of standard)

Current TATA officer contacts are as follows for submission of Thompson reproduction items as per above standard:

President: Chuck Schauer- e-mail "gijive" through the e-mail function on this board
Vice President: Ron Brock- e-mail "Ron Brock" through the e-mail function on this board
(Terms for both expire 8/13/16)

Past President: David Albert - e-mail: dalbert@sturmgewehr.com

These materials are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws.
Copyright 2008, 2009, 2010 © David Albert

  • 7

#114908 Mini Treatise On Barrel Markings

Posted by reconbob on 25 March 2012 - 11:43 AM

A while back I built a gun (FA M1 Thompson) for a guy and he specified a
MINT G.I. barrel be used. I had one which I unwrapped, degreased and fitted
to the receiver, installed front sight, etc. He sent the gun back stating that the
barrel was not original because it did not have a draw mark. He could not be
convinced otherwise - no draw mark, - not an original barrel. I was pretty put
out by this because I had turned a true MINT G.I. Savage barrel into a used
barrel by fitting it to a gun, mounting a front sight and drilling for a front sight
pin, and parkerizing. I was stuck and ended up finding and mounting a barrel
that did have a draw mark, and took a loss and sold the formerly MINT barrel
as a used barrel - which the purchaser was very happy with. The lack of a draw
mark did not bother him.
So what do you look for to determine if a barrel is original G.I.? The after
market barrels are easy to spot - they are either so poorly made and threaded
that its obvious.  Good ones made on modern CNC lathes have a finish -
especially the square thread - that is so good and tool-mark free that its also
obvious. Plus CNC barrels have an almost mirror finish (Green Mountain) which
original barrels never had. Original barrels have a  ground finish. On some
original barrels the fins are milled, not turned.
After my experience I started taking a close look at every barrel that came thru
the shop. My rule of thumb for original smooth or finned barrels - you have a P at top
dead center. If its a Savage round S barrel the S will be stamped between 12 and
9 o'clock (on the left as you would hold the gun to shoot). If its a Stevens square S
barrel the P will be at 12 and the S will be between 12 and 3 o'clock (on the right).
Some barrels will have a O or zero marked at the draw mark either on the first fin
or in the first groove. But not all barrels have a draw mark, and therefore
do not have the zero.
So much for my rule of thumb. After checking several barrels my only conclusion
is that the markings are random. They could be anywhere, they could be complete
or incomplete. Here is a sampling of barrel markings. No two are alike. I would add
that all of these barrels are here for work or have ended up here. None of them were
sold to me so no claims were made as to their authenticity or origin...

Original Stevens M1/M1A1 smooth barrel. Note position of S. This was on an IMA
dummy gun:

Posted Image

This is the only one in the group I question the origin - it has the P, a draw mark
but no S. Was in a parts set:

Posted Image

Posted Image

Here is another M1/M1A1 with the P and the Stevens square S at 9 o'clock. I would have expected
it to be between 12 and 3 o'clock since its Stevens:

Posted Image

Posted Image

Here is a M1928A1 barrel from a Russian parts set - P, Savage round S at 9 o'clock, drawline
and O at three o'clock:

Posted Image

Posted Image

Posted Image

Here is another Russian parts set barrel, P with the Stevens square S at 3 o'clock where you
would expect it, (but not almost on top of the draw mark), O on the first fin:

Posted Image

Posted Image

And last, another Russian parts set barrel, P but no other marking except the
draw line which is way off:

Posted Image

Posted Image

So you cannot rely on the markings alone and where they are located to
judge is a barrel is truly original, although I would be curious if there was no
S somewhere. Does the absence of the S on the last barrel mean its not an
original barrel? If not, who made it? When? and When was it fitted to the gun
which was cut to make this parts set?

  • 7

#23272 Thompson FAQ: Check Here First

Posted by The1930sRust on 07 July 2004 - 05:39 PM

This page became corrupted when I attempted to update it on 3/30/19 - I am currently in the process of recovering it.

If you would like to contribute, please send an e-mail message to David Albert at dalbert@sturmgewehr.com.

Many thanks are due to the originator of the FAQ section, The1930sRust, and the section will continue to be updated as necessary going forward.  I would also like to thank member "cbmott" for suggested updates that he sent, which were updated to this section on 3/30/19.

(Insert photo)
An impressive gathering of Thompsons, including the engraved Colt "Midas" Thompson

Welcome! And thank you for visiting the MachineGunBoards.com Thompson Forum. If you are new to the world of Thompsons and are a first time visitor to the forum, we encourage you read the FAQ listed below. Many of the most common questions concerning Thompsons, both the semi automatic and full automatic varieties, are found here. Then, register as a user! If you have questions or comments not addressed below, please feel free to post them.


What are the different variations of the Thompson, and how much do they cost?
There are five distinct categories of the most commonly encountered Thompson guns:

1. Original production, Colt manufactured submachine guns. 15,000 were manufactured by Colt for Auto-Ordnance, and were commercially available from 1921 to 1939. These include the original Model of 1921 (which in 1926 became the 1921AC with addition of the Cutts compensator), and Model of 1928 Navy (a.k.a. "Overstamp," because the "1" in "1921" was overstamped with an "8"). A semi-automatic version of the 1921, the Model of 1927, was marketed in limited quantities, through modification and re-marking of the Model of 1921. The Colt Model of 1921 Thompson value is approximately $32,000 and up as of March 2019 depending on condition and number of original Colt manufactured parts included with the gun. Thompson Model of 1921, 1928, and M1

2. WWII production models. The most prolific, these Thompson's include the Model of 1928A1 (which can be further divided into several variants), the M1, and M1A1. These Thompsons were produced by either Savage or Auto Ordnance from 1940 to 1944. The Model of 1928A1 Savage or Auto Ordnance Thompson may bring $20,000 and up. M1 and M1A1 versions slightly less, at approximately $23,000 and up. M1 and M1A1 versions slightly less, at approximately $21,000 and up.

3. NAC Thompsons. These are Thompsons legally manufactured (assembled) under the NFA and marketed by Numrich Arms during the 1950's and 1960's. They are stamped with either a "NAC" prefix or suffix in relation to the serial number. Many of these Thompsons were assembled from parts when Numrich acquired the Thompson, and its remaining spare parts, fixtures, and manufacturing equipment from making the TSMG at Colt, Savage, and AO Bridgeport manufacturing facilities.

4. Modern production models. These include the .45 caliber Model of 1928 Thompson manufactured in West Hurley, NY, from about 1972 until 1986 (although some law enforcement only models were produced in 1992). A model of the M1 (though technically an M1A1) was also produced from 1985-86. These guns were virtually identical to the WWII guns. Some of these full auto West Hurley Thompson's were also chambered in .22 caliber. Also, several "commemorative" full auto models were also produced. Many characterize these guns as "shooters", though they have become collector firearms in their own right. West Hurley Thompson's, though the least expensive full auto guns, still range in price from $15,000 to as high as $20,000.

(Insert photo)
West Hurley 1928 owned by R. Lish, metal by P. Krogh/Diamond K and wood by Dan Block

5. New production models. Kahr Arms currently produce ten different versions of the venerable Thompson gun. These include six semi-automatic carbines (patterned after the Model of 1928 and the M1). These carbines are available in either 16 1/2" barrels (non NFA) or 10.5" barrels (which are considered Short Barreled Rifles, and require a Federal stamp to own). These carbine receivers cannot be modified to fire full auto. The 1927 models will also accept drum magazines. The carbines retail for approximately $800. Kahr also produces (late 2003) new production models of the 1928 and M1 submachine gun, but these weapons can only be exported or purchased by law enforcement agencies. Kahr also offers (2004) non-firing display versions of both the Model of 1928 and M-1. *All prices are approximate in 2008 USD.

Are West Hurley submachine guns real Thompsons?
This is a subject of some debate among Thompson collectors. Purists argue that, no, they are not. Citing the somewhat blurry history of the Auto-Ordnance Company, its purported cessation of operation 1944 (and its numerous subsequent changing of hands), some believe no new Thompsons were produced after the end of WWII. Others contend that the guns produced by Numrich Arms Company, first of Mamaroneck, New York, later of West Hurley, New York in the 1950's and 1960's, as well as the Auto Ordnance Company of West Hurley, NY, in the 1970's and 1980's, are the direct descendants of the original Thompson. At one time there was evidence to support both ideas. However, it has now been established the succession of the Thompson gun extends from 1916 to the present ownership by Kahr Arms. While the modern production West Hurley guns do not possess the unique history of the original Thompson (they were not carried by gangsters, bought by police departments of the depression era, or carried into battle by soldiers around the world) they nonetheless possess the aura of the "gun that made the twenties roar" and are historically significant in and of themselves: they are the last of their kind.

West Hurley 1928 (with 1921 actuator) 100 round drum dump (Insert link)

I see Thompson drums listed as "L" or "C". What does that mean?
The two most commonly encountered types of Thompson drums are designated as the "L", for the Roman numeral for 50, and "C", for the Roman numeral for 100. These, then, denote the drum capacity. You may also see "X" drums, 10 round capacity, and 39 round drums. The latter are not very popular, but the 10 round drums were produced during the assault weapons ban to conform with magazine restrictions. New production "L" drums and "C" drums are available from Kahr Arms, and some newly manufactured Taiwanese "L" and "C" drums are also available. Original production "L" and "C" drums can still be legally purchased in most states, but cost between $400 and $7000 depending on the make and capacity.

(Insert Photo)
Thompson L Drums and GI ammo

How many rounds do Thompson's hold?
Drum magazines will hold 10-39-50 & 100 rounds. Stick magazines or Box magazines will hold either 20 rounds or 30 rounds.

How do I load a drum magazine?
Just click on Drum Feeding Instructions for step by step....steps.

Will the M1 and M1A1 Thompson accept a drum magazine?
NO. The were not designed to do so.

I have heard Thompson drum magazines need to be greased from time to time. Is this true??
Yes. Drum greasing is recommended, but is a maintenance task that will not be necessary very often. The Chinese "Crosby" drums are coming in without grease, so if you bought one from Numrich recently, or in the original batch of 200, you should make sure you grease it before use.  

Where can I buy spare parts for my Thompson?
As of 2003, there are several places you can find NOS (new old stock) and new production Thompson parts:

The Tommygun Homepage
Numrich Arms/ Gunparts Corp
Sarco, Inc.
Sportsmans Guide
International Military Antiques
Wolff GunSprings
What A Country magazines
Northridge International
SRT Arms (1928 buffers)

Also, quality parts can be obtained from: Phil at philfordpartsNOSPAM@yahoo.com **Remove NO SPAM and
Doug Richardson ('Offers You Can't Afford To Refuse' catalog request: $5 to 2100 McReynolds Road, Malibu, CA 90265; 310-457-6400 10am-11pm)

Is there a reputable, competent, Thompson gunsmith I can send my semi or full auto Tommy to for work, modifications, or tweaking?
Diamond K/Paul Krogh p-k@[NO SPAM]q.com **Remove NO SPAM 1390 East 7th Street Delta, CO 81416 970-874-5750 ---------------------- Paul (the boards 'PK') performs quality repairs and modifications on all Thompson full automatic and semi automatic guns. Specialities include, but are not limited to, West Hurley tweaking, semi automatic modifications, short barrel replacements, sight and compensator pinning, polishing, reblueing, L drum work, and general gunsmithing chores. Paul also offers specialty modifications including enhanced '28 pilots, '21/ '28 hybrid pilots, modified '28 to '21 actuators, '28 Polyurethane buffers, and '21 style ejector conversions. Custom 1921 SA Thompson owned by Devlin B. Powers, work by P. Krogh Who will work on my Thompson drum magazine? Diamond K/Paul Krogh p-k@[NO SPAM]q.com **Remove NO SPAM 1390 East 7th Street Delta, CO 81416 970-874-5750 --------------------- Paul can reblue all magazines and drums, and can tweak West Hurley magazine to fire, and can also work on 20 and 30 round stick mags.

Where can I find complete guns?
Here is a list of several popular websites to purchase complete NFA firearms:

Does anyone make replacement stocks for the Thompson?
Dan Block hand makes exquisite replacement walnut woods for all Thompson models. Dan is "Deerslayer" on this board, and can be reached using the internal e-mail system. Feel free to also visit his website at http://www.thompsonstocks.com/

Does anyone make high quality reproductions of Thompson hard cases, specifically for the fully automatic guns?
Greg Fox manufactures handcrafted FBI, Police and Indiana hard cases for the Thompson SMG models 1921, 1928 and 1928A1. He also makes a custom hardcase for the M1 Thompson. Contact Greg at M1921A"NOSPAM"@AOL for details and prices.

(insert photo)
Custom M1 Thompson case by Greg Fox

Mark Layton also makes 2 types of custom Thompson chests: http://www.thompsoncases.com

What about wood refinishing? There are many ways to refinish Thompson wood. First of all, however, some advice: if the wood is original, make sure you really want to do this! If your wood is grimey, Cosmoline or grease covered, you need to strip all this off. Easy~Off spray on oven cleaner will do this. Liberally spray the wood and let it stand for 15 minutes or so. Be careful, this stuff is basically foamed lye. Caustic and odorous too. After this, the wood must be washed. A very hot water bath will work. Some people also use Murphy's Oil soap, or an SOS pad to get even more dirt and grime off. The wood can be bleached, but the result is quite often a bone white piece of wood! Some dents in the wood can be raised by placing a wet cloth over them and using an iron on the depression. The bath process will raise the grain of the wood significantly. After the wood is allowed to completely dry, it must be sanded. A great way to do this is to wet sand it. Make a sanding "block" out of a piece of thick felt or other soft pliable material, and wrap it in varying grades of sand paper. This will allow the paper to conform to the surface of the wood, and eliminate the possibility of flat spots. Now, soak the sand paper and felt sanding block in denatured alcohol and sand away! You can start with a coarse grade paper and move up to the really fine grit. Be sure to keep the block wet. Of course, you can dry sand the wood, too. Once the wood is sanded and allowed to dry, staining can begin. There are many schools of thought here, and ways to do this. Some choose just plain boiled linseed oil or tung oil. Depending on how light your wood was to start with, the wood may turn out too light with just an application of these oils. A good stain that leaves a rich chocolate color, similar to the look of a piece of military wood, is Jacobean stain. Others prefer Walnut. Once the color is achieved, linseed oil or tung oil can be added as a last step (again, after the stain has dried) and hand rubbed. One option, before a final oil coat is added, is to try a military dye, such as Vanderhaves Formula XIII. It will impart a light brown color with red overtone. This is a personal choice. Addition of military dye over stain If your pieces of wood don't end up matching (they seldom do) you'll have to experiment with multiple coats. Sometimes, a light steel wool application on the lighter pieces may help them to take the stain better. Linseed oil is a fine maintenance coat that can be applied over your finished product occasionally. Also, one can make a paste of equal parts linseed oil, bees wax, and turpentine (heated over a hot plate and allowed to congeal) that can be hand rubbed in to the wood occasionally. Again, these are merely suggestions of one way to proceed with refinishing.

I bought a sling for my Thompson. How do I install it properly?
See The Rifle Sling Homepage for detailed instructions.

What do all the abbreviations I see here mean?
Some of the more common are listed below:
AO= Auto Ordnance Corporation (or AOC)
BATF(E) or ATF= Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms (and Explosives)
BBL= barrel
C&R= Curio and Relic
DS = Dealer Sample machine gun classification under the NFA of 1934
FA= Full automatic
GBTTGS = "Great Britain - The Tommy Gun Story," book by Tom Davis, Jr., 2014
JTT= John Taliafero Thompson
NAC= Numrich Arms Corporation
NFA= National Firearms Act of 1934
NOS= New Old Stock
RKI= Reasonably Knowledgeable Individual
SA= Semi Automatic
SBR= Short Barrel Rifle
TATA= The American Thompson Association
TCA= Thompson Collectors Association
TG= (2 Meanings:) 1. "Thompson Gun" 2. "Thompson Greed" (The latter originated from Ron Kovar, referring to outrageously escalating prices in the Thompson collector world)
TGTMTTR= "The Gun That Made The Twenties Roar," book by William J. Helmer, 1969
TSMG= Thompson Submachine Gun, or sometimes Thompson SMG
TUTB= "The Ultimate Thompson Book," book by Tracie L. Hill, 2009
WTB= Want To Buy
WTK= Want To Know
WTS= Want To Sell
WTT= Want To Trade


What does the "sub" in submachine gun mean?
The term "submachine gun" was first used to describe the Thompson. The term "sub" means they use pistol caliber ammunition rather than rifle caliber ammunition (which would make it a full "machine gun").

Can I own a fully automatic Thompson?
Probably. Most states (34 of them) will allow ownership of a submachine gun.

How do I know if my State will allow Machinegun and other NFA ownership?
See http://class3laws.com/

What's the dope on getting approved for a transfer?
First, find a gun. Then obtain and complete the proper BATF paperwork (generally a 'Form 4'). You must also be finger printed. This paperwork, then, is submitted to the BATF, along with $200. The process takes approximately 7 months.

Even if I could afford one, I'd hate having to pay $200 a year to keep it!
The $200 federal tax associated with most Thompson guns is only paid once per transfer.

Is there a link that shows which NFA examiner is working on my transfer?
Yes. https://www.nfatracker.com/

Is there a way to track how long my transfer paperwork will take?
Yes, this website tracks when all applications were submitted and when they were approved. https://www.nfatracker.com/

Can a demilled Thompson be legally be brought back to life with the proper BATF approval?
In short, NO! Any machinegun manufactured after 19 May 1986 is considered a post sample machinegun. These are available only to police departments, Class 3 dealers, Class 2 manufacturers, and Class 1 importers. In order to remanufacture a post sample machinegun you must get a Type 07 Federal Firearms License, pay $500 to the BATFE for your Class 2 Manufacturers Special Occupational Tax (SOT), then register with the US State Department for an additional large sum of money. This will get you in the door. If you choose to do all of this, then you can remanufacture a Thompson. After you have done that, you can only keep the weapon as long as you pay these YEARLY fees!

OK, then. Can I make a dummy display gun by rewelding demilled receiver pieces back together?
No, this could be interpreted by the BATFE as trying to construct an unserviceable machinegun. Several variations exits, where persons reweld the front and back receiver pieces to a solid core, or even having the back half of a severed bolt free to move. All these designs are illegal and can result in serious legal problems. For display guns, it is recommended that you use solid dummy receivers, commercially available. "Reconbob" on this board manufactures 80% complete Thompson display receivers of excellent quality as well as blank firing only models. Here is a link to his website: http://www.philaord.com/

I'd like to buy a fully automatic Thompson, but about all I can afford is a West Hurley. I've heard they sometimes have problems. What's the deal?
The Thompson submachine gun as manufactured by Auto Ordnance in West Hurley, New York, is a true Thompson in every way; all parts are fully interchangeable with guns made in previous dispensations. Unfortunately, the care exhibited in the manufacture of the earlier guns was not apparent in these later examples. They can, however, be as reliable and satisfying if proper steps are taken to ensure such. While many surplus GI parts were used in the assembly of these guns, some of the more difficult to obtain and expensive surplus parts were reproduced of lower quality materials and processes, and should be replaced with original GI surplus. Most notable of these is the actuator. Others include the trip, paddle style control levers, magazine catch, barrel and rear sight. All of these latter parts can be serviceable, however the West Hurley buffer pilots should be replaced in any event. The receiver is made from a steel alloy of lower strength. It is not "pot metal" or "soft as butter," just not up the hardness standards of the early guns. West Hurley guns have been known to have digested several hundred thousand rounds and still be serviceable. One of the potential major problem areas is in the machining of the receiver. Unfortunately, tight tolerances were not adhered to in their manufacture, but in almost every case this can be corrected by a competent and experienced "thompsonsmith" and once done, the receiver should be entirely compatible with all TSMG parts and function as well as any "Tommy" is expected to. This is a one time expense (which could run as high as $4000) and should be figured into the price consideration of any gun that has not been so treated. The West Hurley Thompson is the last of the breed and if properly inspected and brought into standard will provide a lifetime of enjoyment and satisfaction to its owner.

Ok. But is there any truth to the West Hurley 1928's having receiver problems, like cracking from fatigue?
There was a time when some individuals promoted speed bolts, and cutting the ears off the Blish locks to supposedly enhance reliability and increase cyclic rate. Guns so modified may be destined for trouble; they are way outside their original design parameters. Cracked receivers likely involved these modifications and/or hot handloads. While the West Hurley receivers are softer than the Savage, Bridgeport or Colt guns, this actually makes them less likely to crack under normal use (soft metal gives, hard metal is more prone to break). They will wear out faster, but not in your lifetime. If you get a West Hurley that has not been "blue printed" (checked against original specifications and adjusted by a gunsmith), expect to pay some extra to get it set up correctly. Once this is done, it will be a good shooter.

I have a West Hurley Thompson. Is any information available about their serial numbers and production dates?
Yes, West Hurley Thompson serial numbers can be researched at the link below:

What are the basic steps for disassembly of my full auto Thompson Model of 1928?
First, remove all magazines or drums and make sure the weapon is unloaded. Retract the actuator/bolt and visibly inspect the chamber (stick your finger in there) and be sure no live rounds are present. Check again. Set the selector to "auto" and the safety to "fire". Now, close the bolt by pulling the trigger and retarding the forward movement of the actuator/bolt with your hand; don't let it slam home. Turn the gun over and locate the frame latch (the button at the rear of the trigger housing). While depressing it with the right thumb, lightly tap the rear grip with the palm of your left hand, striking it towards the rear of the receiver. The trigger assembly will slide back. Slide it rearward and pull the trigger to remove. This will give you access to the bolt/spring/pilot in the receiver, as well as the individual parts of the trigger assembly. To remove the pilot and spring, you must reach in with two fingers and lever out the pilot and buffer away from the rear of the receiver. Be careful, as it will be under spring tension. Once the pilot shaft has cleared the receiver hole, pull it out and remove it and the main spring. The bolt will then lift out, along with the actuator and Blish lock. Consult a detailed guide for further take down procedures, such as the CD on the Colt and military M1 and 1928A1 Thompson Submachine Guns. Reassemble in reverse order. Place the spring over the pilot and push it down as far as it will go by hand. Then place a paper clip or other piece of thin metal through the hole in the end of the pilot (make sure the flat place on the pilot flange is facing away from you) to trap the spring. This process makes it easier to insert the free end of the spring in the bolt/actuator and lever the end of the pilot back into the receiver hole. Once this is accomplished, pull out the paper clip/metal and the spring will rebound. Finally reinstall the trigger housing.

Are there videos online that show disassembly so I don’t have to buy a CD/DVD?
Yes, a search of “Thompson Submachine Gun” will yield several good disassembly videos on youtube.com as well as an old army training film on the “principles of operation” of the 1928A1 Thompson.

What is the Rate of Fire (ROF) of the Thompson?
1921 model- 800-900 rounds per minute; 1928 models 600-700 rpm; M1 & M1A1 700-800 rpm.

How many fully automatic Thompson guns did Colt manufacture?
15,000 were officially manufactured with serial numbers 41 thru 15040.

How come, when I pull my Thompson actuator back, it seems to "cock" in two positions?
There are two notches in either the 21/28 or M1/A1 bolts (towards the front of the rectangular body) which will hold the bolt in the cocked position, one a little further back than the other. The first notch catches the bolt in the rear most position. The second notch is about 5/8" back of the first and will allow the bolt to be that much further forward when cocked. Its purpose is to catch the sear if the first notch misses it in semi auto fire. The third notch in the M1/A1 bolt (towards the rear of the bolt) allows the sear to raise up so the safety can be engaged with the bolt closed.

How many Thompson's were made for WWII?
Savage & Auto-Ordnance made approximately 562,511 Model of 1928's, about 285,480 M1's, and 539,143 M1A1's, give or take a few.

Who made parts for WWII Thompsons? Is there a way to tell by their markings?
Most partswere made by 3 companies, Auto Ordnance, Savage Arms and Stevens Arms. Parts made by Auto Ordnance were marked “AOC”, while Savage marked their parts with an “S” and Stevens marked their parts with a square off S that gets mistaken for a “5”. The book American Thunder III by Frank Innamico is a great resource for more information. There has also been much discussion on this board of the less frequently encountered manufacturers.

I found a few full auto Thompsons for sale, but they are listed as 'Pre May' and 'PRE-86 Dealer Sample'. Why are they so cheap? What gives?
Pre 1986 and post 1986 dealer sample Thompsons can only be owned and transferred between Class 3 gun dealers. Consequently there is little market for them, and hence a lower price. And, no, you cannot simply become a dealer to own them!

Do automatic Thompson's climb? Not really, I've left mine at the bottom of the stairs and it never moved up. But if you leave them laying around one may walk off...Seriously, though, Thompsons are extremely controllable when utilizing the correct stance.  Those who claim they are uncontrollable know very little about them, or their proper use.

What carrier should I use if I need to ship my full auto Thompson? (All NFA Rules Apply)
The following summary is courtesy of "Roscoe Turner" on the board, and is information we should all familiarize ourselves with should the need arise to ship our Thompson, or other NFA item to a gunsmith. (Please take special note that All NFA Rules Apply when shipping an NFA item.)

Shipping of NFA firearms:

UPS: Shipping NFA such as a machine gun via UPS is pretty cut and dry according to their tariff - "UPS does not accept automatic weapons, including machine guns, for shipment." http://www.ups.com/c...s/firearms.html Not much room for discussion with those folks. If you ship one and it is lost or damaged, you are on your own. UPS will not honor the insurance coverage for your shipment. Bottom line...don't use UPS to ship NFA under any circumstances.

FedEx: Updated 10 Dec 12 FedEx no longer has the restriction on firearms insurance as previously reported, the current level is $50,000. Questions about shipping via FedEx can be answered here under firearms - http://www.fedex.com...ound/index.html

United States Postal Service: Finally and surprisingly is the best service for shipping NFA firearms, the United States Postal Service. Shipping via the USPS is the safest and most cost effective way of shipping NFA items. With Registered Priority Mail your package is signed for each time it changes hands and can be insured to a value of $25,000. In most locations the package will be delivered within 2-3 days. When shipping using the USPS be sure to state at the counter you wish the package to be mailed Registered Priority Mail. If you simply state registered mail the clerk may assume you want it shipped First Class Registered Mail which will limit your options. This was recently brought to my attention when a seller attempted to ship a NFA firearm to me and his local post office could only insure the package for a maximum of $5000. Always declare what is in the box. If your post office is not familiar with the regulations regarding shipment of NFA items, do not take no for an answer - educate them, and escalate to management, if necessary. This process may require multiple calls or visits, and an introductory visit without the package is recommended to ensure subsequent smooth handling of the transaction.


Are the new Kahr Thompsons reliable out of the box?
Not always. Unfortunately, few of them work and continue to work without a gunsmiths touch or being returned to the factory for replacement parts. There are Thompsonsmiths that can repair them so that they fire flawlessly, however.

Can I convert a Semi Auto to a Full Auto?
NO! You cannot do this. Doing this will land you in jail for 10 years. Certain Federal Firearms License Holders can do this, however the guns they make cannot be registered for transfer to an individual. There are special full auto bolts that can be "dropped in" to the semi automatic Thompsons. These bolts are considered registered NFA items themselves and can cost many thousands of dollars.

What is the process for installing a short 10.5" barrel on a semi automatic Thompson?
This is classified as constructing a Short Barrel Rifle or "SBR". SBR's are regulated by the National Firearms Act and require approval by the BATFE. First, you must see if your state allows the SBR. Then, you must apply using form ATF F-1, "Application to Make and Register a Firearm," along with ATF fingerprint cards, and citizenship certification form. Send two originals of each form, along with a check of $200 to National Firearms Act Branch Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms. The waiting period is approximately 8 months. You must not possess the short barrel until after you receive your approved application. Installing a barrel on your Thompson can be a tricky and is not as simple as just unscrewing one and installing the new one. It is a job best done by a competent gunsmith. Because you are manufacturing a NFA firearem, you must conspicuously engrave on your receiver your name, city, and state, engraved to a height of 1/16th in. and depth of .003 in. Remember your newly constructed firearm must now comply with all the rules that regulate NFA weapons. You must have approval to transport it out of state, and you should always keep a copy of your stamped Form 1 with the firearm at all times. To obtain forms and learn more about NFA regulations, use the following link: http://www.atf.treas...earms/index.htm ***The above phrase "on your receiver" is not correct in every case. Depending on the particular application, the information may be placed elsewhere.

(Insert photo)
Customized Kahr 1927 SA Thompson with short barrel, owned by Grey Crow. Gunsmithing by P. Krogh

When I have a short barrel installed on my semi automatic Thompson, do I need to take it to a class 3 dealer/gunsmith to get it installed, or can I take it to a non class 3 gunsmith?
Any gunsmith with an 01 FFL can accept the gun for service, and you do not have to wait while the work is done; it can be left at the smith.

I understand the semi automatic Thompsons won't accept original G.I. stick magazines. How do I modify the magazine catch to accept G.I. 20 and 30 round sticks?
The magazine catch must be modified by lowering the lip that engages the magazine .100" while maintaining the original contours and shape. This is commonly achieved with a Dremel tool, or files. After you have removed the safety, move the pivot plate so the ends of the pins are flush with the side of the trigger frame. Pivot the magazine catch out far enough to clear the magazine engaging protrusion from the hole in the trigger guard. Push on the end of the pivot pin part of the mag catch on the far side while pulling the catch out of the hole. Once the magazine engaging protrusion has cleared the side of the trigger guard, carefully allow the catch to rotate and unwind the spring. Remove the catch from the trigger housing . (Assemble in reverse.) When reshaping the magazine catch, you must duplicate all the contours and angles when lowering the engaging surface. Removing .100" will allow use of unmodified GI magazines. Be careful not to remove too much metal. You may have to refit and test several times to acheive the optimal shape.

How are the adjustable rear sights on West Hurley and Kahr manufactured Thompsons different than Colt and WWII manufactured Thompsons?
Original, adjustable Lyman sights are marked with the Lyman name, and feature a windage adjustment knob. Colt and WWII era Thompsons, as well as early Numrich/AO West Hurley Thompsons had Lyman sights installed. Most West Hurley and Kahr adjustable rear sights are made from M1917 Rifle sights, which have a ladder/detent adjustment, with bases made of either steel, aluminum, or potmetal. Current Kahr sights have steel bases.

(Insert photo)
Lyman Adjustable Rear Sight

(Insert photo)
Lyman Adjustable Rear Sight Mounted on West Hurley Model 1928 Thompson

(Insert photo)
West Hurley Adjustable Rear Sight Above
Images Courtesy The1930sRust ==============================================


Starting from the top left corner:

The World's Submachine Guns (Machine Pistols), Vol. 1, by Thomas B. Nelson, 1963. International Small Arms Publishers. Out of print. Library of Congress Catalog Card Number 63-14797. 739 pages, with 34 pages on the Thompson. This is the first volume in a 4-volume series on weapons. (Actually, there are 5 volumes, but one is not an official part of the World's Weapons series) My copy is signed by the author in 1967, to the inventor of the Smith and Wesson Model 76 Submachine Gun.

The Gun that Made The Twenties Roar, by William J. Helmer, 1969. MacMillan. (This is a first edition) Out of print. Library of Congress Catalog Card Number 69-12648. 286 pages. Exceptional book written by the author while he was at the University of Texas at Austin. It covers the history of Auto-Ordnance in great detail, written as a master's thesis. Bill Helmer is a good friend of mine, and has written several gangster related books of note that are also recommended to Thompson collectors who might have an interest in gangster history.

The Gun that Made The Twenties Roar, by William J. Helmer, 1969. The Gun Room Press. (This is a second edition printed by the Gun Room Press in 1979 with an additional chapter by the late George C. Nonte, Jr. covering West Hurley Thompsons.) Out of print. ISBN O-88227-007-25. 229+ pages.

The Complete Book of Thompson Patents, by Donald G. Thomas, 1980. Desert Publications. Out of print, and difficult to find. ISBN O-87947-131-X. 493 pages pages. This book simply reprints all Thompson patent paperwork known at the time.

The Thompson Submachine Gun, by Roger A. Cox, 1982. Law Enforcement Ordnance Company. Out of print, and expensive to buy. Prices are currently $250-$350 to acquire this book. No ISBN noted, however there is a 1986 38-page supplement that has ISBN 0-943850-00-3. 231 pages. This was the definitive work before Tracie Hill's American Legend book. It is good, and contains some manuals printed in their entirety, but don't feel like you have to fork out the bucks to acquire this one. Tracie's book has more content, and covers just about everything that this book does.

Notes on Auto-Ordnance, The Thompson Submachine Gun, Second Edition, by James F. Bannan and Tracie L. Hill, 1989. Out of print. South West Publishing Co. No ISBN noted. 307 pages. This book is predominantly pictures of Thompson accessories, and is a good reference piece that I use from time to time. Most items are covered in Tracie's later book.

Les Pistolets Mitrailleurs Thompson, by Jean Huon, 1995. The original is out of print. French book on Thompson Submachine Guns - Text is in French. ISBN 2-9508308-2-X. 128 pages.

Thompson, The American Legend, The First Submachine Gun, by Tracie L. Hill, 1996. Collector Grade Publications. Out of print. ISBN 0-88935-208-9. 559 pages. You must have this book if you like Thompsons.

The Thompson Submachine Gun, Classic Weapons Series, by Chris Ellis, 1998. Out of print. Military Book Club. No ISBN noted. 64 pages. Marginal Thompson book, not necessary to have. Has good WWII pictures, some of which cannot be found printed elsewhere.

American Thunder, The Military Thompson Submachine Guns, by Frank Iannamico, 2000. Out of print. Moose Lake Publishing. No ISBN noted. 294 pages. This is a great book covering military Thompsons better than any other book up until it was published. It has been replaced by even more thorough books, American Thunder II, and American Thunder, Third Edition.

Les Pistolets Mitrailleurs Thompson, by Jean Huon, 2002. This book is still in print. Editions Crepin-LeBlond. Updated French book on Thompson Submachine Guns - Text is in French. ISBN 2-730-0213-0. 135 pages.

Colt Thompson Serial Numbers, by Gordon Herigstad, Volume Four, 2004. Out of print (Retailed for $280 + shipping when last available) Published by the late author. The most recent volume available is Volume 6.  No ISBN noted. If you are seriously into Colt Thompsons, then you should acquire this book that attempts to document the history of every one of the 15,000 Colt Thompsons produced. It has history you will not find elsewhere for individual serial numbers. It is a tome of about 1,000,000 pages...(not really, but it's over 3 1/2 inches thick, and leather bound.) Very nice book to have in the library. They are individually serial numbered like Colt Thompsons, beginning at #41. I have #241, which was the 200th book printed.

Submachine Guns of the United States of America, by Frank Iannamico, 2004. Moose Lake Publishing. Currently available at the following website: http://www.machinegunbooks.com This is a great book in general, and has an excellent chapter on West Hurley Thompsons. 486 pages. ISBN 0-9742724-0-X.

American Thunder II, by Frank Iannamico, 2004. Moose Lake Publishing. Out of print. 536 pages.

On The Side of Law and Order Exhibit Catalog, 2004. Out of print. Thompson Collector's Association program for the exhibit of Thompsons at the NRA National Firearms Museum. 36 pages. I include this one because it is a great, color program that has a lot of history and information on rare Thompsons and other Auto-Ordnance items, and spans the history of the Thompson.

Thompson Manuals, Catalogs, and Other Paper Items, by David Albert and Mike Sig, 2005. Self Published. Currently available from the owner of this website, contact dalbert@sturmgewehr.com. 50 pages. This is a specialty collector guide to the paper items associated with the Thompson, and documents 107 different items. Useful in determination of reproductions, and with knowing what paper items are out there to collect.

The Ultimate Thompson Book, by Tracie Hill, 2009. Collector Grade Publications. Published in April, 2009. The best single resource in existence on the Thompson Submachine Gun, as its title implies. Currently available. ISBN 0-888935-496-0.

Great Britain - The Tommy Gun Story, by Tom Davis, Jr. 2015. CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2015. Impeccably researched book on British Thompsons, with a particular focus on Savage Thompsons. ISBN 1502977818.

American Thunder, Third Edition, by Frank Iannamico, 2015. Chipotle Publishing. Avalaibale here: http://www.machinegunbooks.com You must have this book if you have any interest in military Thompsons. Enough said.

Doug Richardson's Thompson Book Series: Doug Richardson has self published a series of 7 books on the Thompson Submachine Gun. They are pictured below. The box magazine and drum magazine books are especially helpful references. These books should be considered by the advanced Thompson enthusiast, or by someone with a special interest in a particular subject that Doug Richardson has covered in any of the books.
Thompson Submachine Gun Box Magazines, by Douglas W. Richardson, 1995. Currently available from the author. No ISBN noted. 56 pages. Thompson Submachine Gun Drum Magazines Types "L" & "C", by Douglas W. Richardson, 1996. Currently available from the author. No ISBN noted. 118 pages.
Thompson Submachine Gun Suppressor, by Douglas W. Richardson, 1996. Currently available from the author. Details an aftermarket suppressor designed specifically for the Thompson Submachine Gun. No ISBN noted. 25 pages.
Thompson Submachine Gun Patents, by Douglas W. Richardson, 1996. Currently available from the author. Reprints the U.S. Patent Office patent paperwork for many patents covering the Thompson Submachine Gun, also patent markings on TSMG's. No ISBN noted. 122 pages.
Thompson New Production Semi-Autos, by Douglas W. Richardson, 1999. Currently available from the author. Speaks to differences between the West Hurley Semi-Automatic Thompsons, has operating instructions, and directions about mating certain WWII parts to semi-auto guns. Also mentions Kilgore's purchase of the right to manufacture the Thompson Submachine Gun in 1949. No ISBN noted. 29 pages.
Thompson Technical Volume I, by Douglas W. Richardson, Individual writings on various Thompson subjects dated 1991 - 1999. Currently available from the author. No ISBN noted. 102 pages.
Thompson Technical Volume II, by Douglas W. Richardson, Individual writings on various Thompson subjects dated 1995 - 1998. Currently available from the author. No ISBN noted. 101 pages.

One more book...I forgot to include this one in the group picture...
Small Arms Identification Series No. 17, .45 Thompson Submachine Gun, by Ian Skennerton, 2003. Good overview of WWII Thompsons, with some Australian focus. Currently available from the author. ISBN 0-949749-46-X. 48 pages.
Book reviews and pictures above by David Albert
  • 6

#82789 FAQ & Guide To Reising Submachine Gun Accessories

Posted by dalbert on 30 August 2008 - 11:39 AM

These materials are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws.
Copyright 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 © David Albert

Posted Image
The Reising Model 50 Submachine Gun was featured on this 1945 War Bonds poster
for the 7th War Loan drive.  It is the only known U.S. Government poster to feature the Reising.  
(David Albert Collection)

Posted Image
"Commercial" Model 50, "Military" Model 50, and Model 55 Reising Submachine Guns
Image courtesy Frank Iannamico

This is the premiere source of reference information on the internet for the Reising Submachine Gun.  It is an online guide to Reising guns, and their accessories, both original and reproduction.  If you have something you would like to share, please send the description and photos to David Albert at dalbert@sturmgewehr.com, and I will consider it for inclusion.

The list is organized as follows:

1.  Reising Submachine Gun Frequently Asked Questions
2.  Reising Accessories
3.  Helpful Hints

Reising Submachine Gun Frequently Asked Questions

1.  Reising Models

Harrington & Richardson Model 50 "Reising" Submachine Gun:

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The Reising Model 50 pictured above is popularly known as a "Commercial" Reising
(David Albert Collection)

The Reising Model 50 Submachine Gun was developed by Eugene Reising, and manufactured by Harrington and Richardson Arms Company in Worchester, Massachusetts.  It hit the market in early 1941, and was adopted for use by the United States Marine Corps, based on its quick availability.  The Marine Corps adopted the Reising because they experienced difficulty procuring the Thompson Submachine Gun, mostly because production of the Thompson had to ramp back up from an 18-year hiatus, and many of them were designated for overseas contracts, particularly to Great Britain.  The Reising became adopted by many law enforcement agencies across the United States, and was also adopted for use in small numbers by the Canadian Army.  A total of about 120,000 Reising Submachine Guns of all types were manufactured during World War II.  Marketing of the Model 50 continued to law enforcement agencies after the war, and a couple of additional, limited production runs of the weapon were made by H&R during the 1950's.  

The reputation of the Reising Model 50 was somewhat tainted by early South Pacific combat experiences in the U.S. Marine Corps.  The weapon ran very well when clean, but the dirt and grime associated with Pacific Theatre combat conditions apparently led to some reliability issues.  Reising parts were also not manufactured to tolerances that allowed them to be completely interchangeable.  Many parts had been hand-fitted at the factory.  During communal cleaning of Reisings by Marines under combat conditions, parts got mixed up, and promoted mechanical failures when the guns were re-assembled and employed.  This led to a loss of confidence by some early users in the South Pacific, and subsequently resulted in some legendary acts of disposal of a number of Reisings, ordered by a unit commander to prevent their use by Marines.  It has been speculated that when the interchangeability issue was discovered, absent sufficient armorer support to match up or re-fit parts, that the decision was made to destroy a large number of Reisings in anticipation of receipt of new replacements, for which greater care could have been taken to keep originally mated parts together.

The Model 50 operates from the closed bolt, and is a lightweight, highly accurate submachine gun.  Its accuracy easily exceeds that of a Thompson, as well as other open-bolt submachine guns, and is controllable during full auto firing.  For an NFA enthusiast, the Reising Model 50 is a relative bargain, and a collectible U.S. Martial arm of considerable firepower.

Harrington & Richardson Model 55 "Reising" Submachine Gun:

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Above 3 images courtesy Frank Iannamico

The Reising Model 55 Submachine gun is a shortened version of the Model 50, designed for U.S. Marine Corps paratrooper use.  The weapon has a 10 1/2" barrel with no compensator, as well as features a folding wire stock with a pistol grip.  All of its operational characteristics are the same as the Reising Model 50.

Harrington & Richardson Model 60 "Reising" Semi-Automatic Rifle:

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Image courtesy Frank Iannamico

Harrington & Richardson manufactured approximately 3500 Reising Model 60's, which were a semi-automatic version of the Model 50, with a longer barrel, making it a Title I firearm.  Most were issued to guard units for service within the United States.

2.  Military vs. "Commercial" Reisings

While the Reising Submachine Gun was never represented by its manufacturer as either a "Commercial," or "Military" Reising, such are the popular terms that many use to describe them. A "Commercial" Reising is usually one of the earlier manufactured weapons that is blued, and features either a 28 or 29 fin barrel.  The "Military" Reising is usually parkerized, and has a barrel with 14 fins.  The presence of such features does not hold absolutely true for either type, but they are generally accurate descriptions of the basic differences.  There are also differences noted in rear sights, front sights, takedown screws, trigger guards, selector switches, and internal features that differentiate them.

3.  Harrington & Richardson .22 Caliber Rifles Related to the Reising Submachine Gun

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An early H&R advertising matchbook for the new "Reising" .22 Automatic Rifle.
(David Albert Collection)

Eugene Reising designed several .22 LR rifles for H&R based on his Reising SMG design.  All .22's were semi-automatic, and several names and design changes were associated with the various models listed below.  The rifles came into existence because the Marine Corps wanted a .22 training rifle for the M1 Garand.  Further details and pictures of each model will be added as time allows.

"Reising .22" - Original Test Rifle for Model 65 Marine Corps Production - This is the original 1943 test rifle for production of the Model 65.  It has a vintage tag on it that is difficult to read in places, but indicates that 80,000 rounds were test fired through it, plus 20,000 at the factory. The tag, dated 1944, indicates that it is the original 1943 test rifle, and property of H&R, and to “Hold for Instructions.”  Comparing it to a production Model 65, the buttplate is a plain piece of sheet metal, versus the stamped production metal buttplate.  All markings are hand stamped.  Serial number is a single letter.  It does not have the H&R rollmark that production Model 65’s have…only “Reising ..22” hand-stamped on the side.  “Safe” and “Fire” are also hand-stamped.  The magazine is hand-stamped with “10” on it to indicate capacity, and does not feature the company markings of production magazines.  The trigger guard appears to have been hand finished, versus the slightly rougher stamping on the production model.  The safety knob is spherical, rather than pill shaped with flattened sides on the production models.  The barrel has lathe turning marks on it.  This is the rifle the Marine Corps used to evaluate the Model 65 design as a .22 trainer for the M1 Garand Rifle, which resulted in the subsequent production of tens of thousands of rifles of the Model 65 design and its descendants.

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David Albert Collection

Reising Model 65 (New Military Model) - Most Model 65's were made as training rifles for the Marine Corps, and a small number are marked to indicate so (post-production), however most have no military markings whatsoever.  Marine issued Model 65's are usually encountered in very worn condition due to extensive training use.  Their finish is a very light parkerized type that is unique to the Model 65, and has sort of a greyish-green coloring.  Model 65's were also sold to civilians until they were replaced by the 165/150/151 models, which were made especially for the civilian market. Reising Model 65's were manufactured from 1943 to 1945.  In May, 1945, production transitioned to the Model 165.

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David Albert Collection

Reising Model 65 (Specially Marked and Upgraded to National Match Specifications by USMC) - A very small number of Reising Model 65's were modified for National Match use.  The example in this website owner's collection is scoped, and marked "USMC" and "NM" on the left side of the receiver.  It has a crowned bull barrel with no front sight.

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David Albert Collection

"The General" (Reising .22 Caliber Automatic Rifle) - This was the .22 caliber Reising Model 65 that was marketed commercially during World War II.  None of the rifles were marked as "The General," but Harrington & Richardson advertisements of the WWII period featured the nickname, and the rifle was also featured in an advertisement at the back of the 1943 version of H&R's Reising Model 50 Submachine Gun manual.  

Doug Moretz' collection includes a full set of original paper items that accompanied a WWII purchased Reising Model 65 "The General" rifle.  The various items can be seen at the following links, and include a wartime H&R letter explaining the unique rifle, it's limited wartime availability, and the changes that were projected after military production ended.  Also included are several items associated with the Redfield Model 70-AT aperture sight included on the rifle.

Wartime H&R Letter to Accompany Reising Model 65 "The General" Rifle

H&R Reising Model 65 Care and Use Content Envelope

H&R Model 65 Instructions for Loading and Firing

H&R Flyer for Redfield Sight on "The General" .22 Rifle

Redfield Sight Guarantee & Instruction Envelope

Redfield Instructions for No. 70-AT Sight Mounted on H&R Reising "The General" .22 Rifle

Redfield Guarantee Card
Above Images Doug Moretz Collection

Below is link to a component part listing for the "General" Model 65 .22 Caliber Semi-Automatic Rifle, published in an August 1953 H&R Components Parts Price List.  (Notice that it was listed as a discontinued model at that time)

"General" .22 Caliber Semi-Automatic Rifle Component Parts Price List, August 1953

Model 165 "Leatherneck" - The Model 165 is a lightened Model 65 with a 10-round magazine, and is marked with the "Leatherneck" nickname. H&R began using plastic trigger guards on the Model 165, and the rifles have a blued finish.  The example shown below has the rear sight removed, and a scope mounted.  The Model 165 began production in May, 1945, and probably ran until about 1952.  This information is based on a 1945 letter from H&R describing the transition to the Model 165, and also on a 1953 H&R catalog that indicated the model had been discontinued.

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David Albert Collection

"Leatherneck" Model 165 Component Price List from August 1953 H&R Publication (Model was discontinued)

Model 150 "Leatherneck" - The Model 150 is similar to the Model 165, except that it has a 5-round magazine.  It features basic iron sights.  The price for the Model 150 listed in the H&R October 1, 1949 Consumer Price List was $49.50.

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David Albert Collection

Model 151 "Leatherneck" - The Model 151 is a Model 150 with an upgraded Redfield aperture sight.  The price for the Model 151 listed in the H&R October 1, 1949 Consumer Price List was $53.50.

"Leatherneck" Models 150 & 151 Component Parts Diagram and August 1953 Price Listing

Model MC-58 - The Model MC-58 is the same as a military Model 65, except that the safety is located on the front of the trigger guard, functioning like the safety on M1 Garand and M14 Rifles.  It has a dark parkerized finish.  The rifle began use in 1959, probably initiated due to the adoption of the M14 Rifle.

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Model 700 - This Harrington and Richardson .22 Magnum caliber rifle is a distant relative to the Reising Submachine Gun, and other Reising related .22's.  It is semi-automatic, however it does not utilize the Reising underlever (action bar) cocking design.

4.  Reising Magazine Types

Original Reising .45 magazines hold 20 rounds, and another original version holds 12 rounds.  Both are stamped with Harrington and Richardson markings, as well as indicate they are for the Reising.  A 30-round aftermarket magazine also exists, as well as a 50-round aftermarket drum, which is a Thompson drum that has been modified with the top of a Reising magazine attached.  Some Thompson box magazines have also been modified to work in the Reising, and hold 23 or 25 rounds.  I will post pictures of these as soon as I can.  (If anyone has a picture of the aftermarket 50-round drum, or modified Thompson mags, please forward them to me for inclusion.)  Some 12 and 20 round Reising magazines have "NE" markings, followed by a number.  These were made by New England Small Arms, which consisted of several manufacturers.

The following two pictures show 3 different .45 ACP Reising magazines from different angles.  From top to bottom:
1.  12-round .45 ACP magazine - Can be easily identified by the indentations in the magazine housing to enable single stack feeding.  These magazines also have flat followers.  
2.  Original 20-round .45 ACP magazine - Note the difference in the shape of the follower, to enable staggered row feeding of cartridges.
3.  After market 30-round .45 ACP magazine made by Ken Christie.
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Above Images David Albert Collection

Example of Harrington and Richardson stamping on a 12-round .45 ACP magazine:
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David Albert Collection

A company is producing reproduction 20-round magazines for the Reising. They are marked similarly to the originals, but they read as follows:

H&R - Reising
Model 50 - Cal . 45 Magazine

5-Round & 10-Round Magazines for Reising .22 LR Rifles:

The Models 65, 165, and MC-58 were supplied with 10-round magazines, and the Models 150 and 151 were supplied with 5-round magazines.  Both magazines are interchangeable with all Reising .22 LR rifles.  10-round, .22 LR Magazines were manufactured with both a parkerized, and a blued finish, while the 5-round magazines were manufactured with a blued finish.

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David Albert Collection

5.  Articles on the Reising

Many articles have been written on the Reising, beginning in 1941.  These articles are helpful in documenting the history of the weapon, as well as provide much useful collector information.  Some of the articles also help provide a better understanding of the sources of many misperceptions and (actual or perceived) shortcomings of the Reising.  Here are the magazine references for the articles:

1.  Army Ordnance, January-February, 1941: "The H&R Reising Submachine Gun," by Lt. Col. Calvin Goddard  (A note of interest regarding Calvin Goddard - He set up the crime lab at Northwestern University in Chicago immediately following the St. Valentine's Day Massacre in 1929, and developed many of the firearms forensic techniques used by law enforcement since that time.  He wrote many small arms articles throughout his career.)

2.  Business Week, January 18, 1941: "Private Sub-Machine Gun," by Business Week Staff Writer (A brief summary with a picture of Eugene Reising blindfolded, disassembling a Model 50 Reising Submachine Gun, which the article indicates H&R began to manufacture privately "on faith" that it might contribute to the U.S. Defense effort.)

3.  Popular Science, April 1941: "Latest Submachine Gun is Designed for Mass Production," by Popular Science Staff Writer

4.  American Rifleman, May 1941: "M-65 H&R Training Rifle," by F.C. Ness (Appears in "Dope Bag" section)

5.  Steel, ??, 1941: "The Reising Submachine Gun," by Arthur F. Macconochie (Was reprinted in Steel's special edition "Modern Small Arms" digest of 15 small arms related articles from the magazine's pages in 1941)

6.  Fur-Fish-Game, August 1941: "New Reising Submachine Gun," by Fur-Fish-Game Staff Writer

7.  Leatherneck, September 1942: "The Reising Submachine Gun"

8.  Mechanix Illustrated, October 1942: "Sky Dynamite," by Mechanix Illustrated Staff Writer, photos by Rudy Arnold (This short article covers Marine Paratroopers, and while not specifically about the Reising, the Model 55 is prominently mentioned, and pictured 6 times within the article, as well as featured on the cover.)

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David Albert Collection

9.  Machinery, January 1943: "Producing the Reising Gun," by Holbrook L. Horton  (This article begins with an H&R slogan, "The Reising Gun will Lick the Rising Sun.")

10. Hunting and Fishing, February 1943: "Reising Gun Defies the Rising Sun," by Hunting and Fishing Magazine Staff (Short article summarizes the Reising and its inventor.)

11.  American Rifleman, February 1943: "The Reising Submachine Gun," reprinted in condensed version from "Leatherneck" magazine

12. Gun World, ??, circa 1960: "What Went Wrong with the Reising Gun," by William B. Edwards  (Have photocopy of article with no date, but subscription ad lists address with no zip code, so probably from very early 1960's, judging by comments in article.  If anyone can confirm issue date, it would be appreciated.)

13. Guns, ??, 1975: "The Short-Lived Reising," by Col. Robert H. Rankin

14.  Combat Illustrated, June 1976: "The Reising Gun: A Matter For Contention," by Major Jack Lewis, USMC

15. Guns Illustrated, 1978: "It's A Bear!," by Charles W. Walker (Article covers the life of Eugene Reising, and focuses on 1920's Reising Arms Company .22 pistols.)

16. American Rifleman, June, 1983: "Harrington & Richardson Model 65 'Reising'"," by Edward A. Tolosky  (This is one of the "Exploded Views" features in the magazine that briefly covers history, and has disassembly instructions and a parts diagram.)

17. The Phoenix Exchange, Spring/Summer, 1987: "The Reising Revisited" by Riley Diana (This magazine is no longer in business, and was similar to today's "Military Trader".  Mr. Diana has agreed to let a copy of the article be posted here, and it can be accessed at the link below: (Updated 5/22/11)


18.  Machine Gun News, August 1994: "Reising M50: The Gun No One Wants," by Russell A. Williams  (This article casts the Reising in a very negative light)

19.  Machine Gun News, November 1994: "An Up-Reising!," by Frank Iannamico  (This article casts the Reising in a very positive light, and serves to rebut some of the statements made in the Williams MGN August '94 article)

20.  Machine Gun News, December 1995: "Reising Re-Thought," by Russell Willams  (Williams re-thinks his approach used in the August 1994 article after significant feedback, Frank's rebut article, and also after firing 1200 additional rounds through his Reising.  He decides it has some character, and concludes that its positives probably equal its negatives.)

21.  Machine Gun News, December 1995: "Magazine Release for M50 Reising," by Frank Iannamico  (This is a short, boxed feature within Williams' article in the same issue, and it describes a replacement magazine release for the M50)

22.  American Rifleman, April 1996: "H&R Reising SMGs," by Bruce N. Canfield (7-paragraph summary featured in Q&A section)

23.  Small Arms Review, July 2000: "H&R Reising Model 60 Carbine," by Frank Iannamico

24.  Small Arms Review, September 2000: "The Reising Model 50 Submachine Guns" by Frank Iannamico

25.  Small Arms Review, October 2000: "The Reising Model 50 Submachine Guns, Part II" by Frank Iannamico

26.  Small Arms Review, December 2000: "The Model 55 Reising," by Frank Iannamico

27.  Small Arms Review, July 2005: "H&R Reising Submachine Gun Manuals," by David R. Albert  (This was my first published article for SAR)

28.  ArmyTimes.com, May 15, 2006: "The lore of the Corps: Reisings found to be unreliable in combat," by Charles A. Jones  (Article may be accessed at the following URL: ArmyTimes.com Reising Article)

29.  Small Arms Review, January 2007: "Full-Auto Reising Model 65," by Captain Monty Mendenhall  (Story of Max Atchisson's M65 .22 rifle full-auto conversions)

30.  American Rifleman, April 2007: "The Short End of the Stick?  The Reising Submachine Gun," by Bruce Canfield

31.  Small Arms Review, April 2007: "Rescued Reising!," by Lawrence Heiskell  (An account of a Reising that was about to be destroyed by a PD, but the transferable paperwork was found by ATF.)

32.  Small Arms Review, August 2007: "Reising Star: A Buyers Guide to Reising Submachine Guns," by Frank Iannamico  (Great article with many color pictures and examples of differences between Reisings -- this is a "must have" Reising magazine article.)

33.  Shotgun News, November 19, 2007: "Not Quite Reising to the Occasion," by Peter Kokalis (This article is extremely negative towards the Reising, and has some factual errors, such as stating that 20,000 Reisings were produced during WWII, while the actual number is 5 to 6 times Kokalis' figure. - He also stated that the Model 60 Semi-Automatic Reising Carbine was manufactured to compete with the Model of 1927 Semi-Automatic Thompson, when, in fact, they were not even on the market at the same time.)

34.  Small Arms Review, July 2008: "The U.S. .45 Model 50 and 55 Reising Submachine Gun and Model 60 Semiautomatic Rifle," by Robert C. Ankony, PhD

35.  Guns, March 2010: "The .45 ACP in World War II," by Mike "Duke" Venturino

36.  WWII Ordnance Illustrated, Spring 2010: "The Reising Submachine Gun: America's unknown, unloved machine gun," by Lt. James L. Ballou

37.  Small Arms Review, April 2011: "Notes on the Reising Submachine Gun, Part I," by Frank Iannamico

38.  Small Arms Review, May 2011: "Reising Notes, Part II," by Frank Iannamico

6.  Books on the Reising

If you have any interest in Reisings, there are 2 books you MUST have in your library.  Both books are written by Frank Iannamico.  The first is "Reising Submachine Gun Story," and the second is "Submachine Guns of the United States of America."  Both can be purchased at the following link:


Bruce Canfield's 1994 book, "U.S. Infantry Weapons of World War II," has 8 pages of general coverage, plus another page of collector notes on the Reising Models 50 and 55.

Alec S. Tulkoff's book "Grunt Gear - USMC Combat Infantry Equipment of World War II," is another book that has several pages devoted to the Reising SMG, and also features a photo of many Reising M55's in their original boxes, lined up on a shelf, with their serial numbers marked on the end of each box.

Another book exists that contains some additional information on the Harrington & Richardson Reising Model 65 and MC-58 .22 caliber military training rifles.  The book is titled "U.S. Martial .22RF Rifles," by Thomas D. Batha.  This is a 102 page paperback with 5 pages on the subject.  It is still in print, and available from the large online booksellers, and is also sometimes encountered for sale at gun shows.  Information contained within this book on the Model 65 demonstrates some inaccuracy.

Reising Accessories

1.  Federal Laboratories Reising Hard Cases

The Federal Laboratories Reising Submachine Gun case is a very desirable accessory for any Reising collector.  Federal Laboratories was based in Pittsburgh, PA, and distributed law enforcement equipment such as tear gas, gas guns, billie clubs, riot gear, sirens, emergency vehicle lights, Thompson Submachine Guns from about 1934-1940, Reising Submachine Guns, and cases to transport much of their police equipment.  The company still exists at a different location today.  The picture below shows an excellent condition example of their Reising Submachine Gun case.  Cases will be encountered with both blue and black felt interiors.

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The Fed Labs cases are very sturdily built, using over 200 rivets, and metal corner pieces.  The weakest part of the case is the handle.  Surviving examples are also often encountered with damaged, loose, or missing gun positioning blocks, as well as peeling felt, all of which are can usually be repaired.  Prices as of October 2008 usually range from about $500 to $1100, depending upon condition.

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Federal Laboratories sticker found on their Reising Hard Cases:

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Above Images David Albert Collection

2.  Reising SMG Soft Case

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David Albert Collection

3. Reising Front Sight Wrench & Envelope

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4.  Reising Paper Items (Manuals, Catalogs, Advertisements)

1941 Advertisement for Reising Model 50 Submachine Gun:
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David Albert Collection

Earliest Known Reising Submachine Gun Flyer, 1941:
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David Albert Collection

Earliest Known Reising Submachine Gun Manual:
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David Albert Collection

A 1941 Reising Submachine Gun Advertisement:
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David Albert Collection

Here is the 1941 Reising Submachine Gun Manual that was featured in the advertisement above:
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David Albert Collection

This is a manual printed at the direction of the War Department at Springfield Armory in August, 1941.  It is only 6 pages long, and is now the first known military manual for the Reising. (Added 12/19/11)

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David Albert Collection

A 1942 H&R Reising Submachine Gun Manual - These were advertised in many WWII era magazines, with H&R offering them for free as a way to keep the H&R name in the public eye during the war effort, in hopes that civilians would purchase H&R firearms after the war.
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David Albert Collection

A 1942 Spanish Language H&R Reising Submachine Gun Manual:
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Doug Moretz Collection

An example of a 1943 H&R Reising Submachine Gun Manual with the Army/Navy "E" Flag Sticker attached:
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David Albert Collection

Two examples of Harrington and Richardson Envelopes used to mail 1942/43 Reising Manuals:
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Above Images David Albert Collection

Marine Corps Weapons School Descriptive Reising Manual, May 1942: (This is a hand-typed, military manual for the Reising)
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David Albert Collection*

Reising Submachine Gun General Data Manual:
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David Albert Collection

Marine Corps Ordnance School Reising Submachine Gun Manual:
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David Albert Collection

Marine Corps Reising Submachine Gun Manual:
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David Albert Collection

Harrington and Richardson Army-Navy "E" Award Program and Promo Material for Reising Submachine Gun:
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Image courtesy Frank Iannamico

Canadian Army Service Information Bulletin for Reising Submachine Gun, September 3, 1943:
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David Albert Collection

Reising Model 50 Submachine Gun Manual, 1951:
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David Albert Collection

"For Distinguished Service" Reising Submachine Gun Flyer, 1951:
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David Albert Collection

H&R "Leatherneck" Model 165 .22 Caliber Rifle Flyer, 1945:

This flyer was mailed with a letter from H&R dated May 17, 1945 indicating that the Model 165 "Leatherneck" Rifle had been announced in trade papers, and price was still to be determined.  The back of the 4-page flyer featured an arrangement of newspaper clippings touting the service of the Reising Submachine Gun.

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David Albert Collection

Model 65 Instruction Sheet Envelope:
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H&R Protection Equipment Catalog, Undated (Probably late 1940's):
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David Albert Collection*

TM-ORD-2000, Marine Corps Maintenance Manual, Rifle, Cal. .22 Long Rifle - MC-58, October 1958:
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David Albert Collection*

SL-4-01423A, Marine Corps Stock List, Rifle, Caliber .22, MC-58, December 1959:
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David Albert Collection*

H&R Law Enforcement Protection and Recreation Equipment Flyer, September 1961:
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David Albert Collection*

5.  Reising Web Gear

A 3-cell canvas Reising magazine pouch was procured by the Marine Corps for use with the Reising during World War II.  These are very rare collector items.  International Military Antiques sells a reproduction 3-cell Reising pouch, which is pictured below:

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Above Images David Albert Collection

A 5-cell, USMC marked Reising 20-round magazine pouch was also issued.  At a glance, this pouch appears very similar to a Thompson 5-cell XX magazine pouch.  Reising magazines fit in Thompson pouches, however the flaps will not close.  All examples observed of Reising 5-cell, USMC marked magazine pouches bear the date of 1942, which can be seen in the picture below.  The USMC marking, and 1942 date are the easiest characteristics to use in identification of a Reising 5-cell magazine pouch.

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Note the subtle differences between the Reising pouch, and the Thompson pouch.  The male portion of the Reising pouch snaps are located on a webbing strip that is higher in comparison to the same feature on a Thompson pouch.

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Above Images David Albert Collection

The U.S. Marine Corps issued a paratrooper carrying case for the Model 55 Reising.  This is probably the scarcest, and most expensive Reising accessory to be found.  Here is a picture of one from that came from the former Harrington and Richardson museum.

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This picture shows the size of the Model 55 in comparison to the case. (This Model 55 is the former Harrington and Richardson museum gun.)

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This item is officially know as a "Holster, Reising Gun," and is more popularly known as a "Jump Case."  It is a Marine Paratrooper case to hold a Reising Model 55 Submachine Gun.  Here are photos of two different examples:

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6.  Reising Slings

The subject of Reising slings is one that has some ambiguity, as well as some specifics.  M1 Carbine slings were used on Reisings, and have a very similar appearance to official Reising slings.  Many reproduction M1 Carbine slings exist on the market, so one should examine their characteristics closely if an original M1 Carbine sling is desired.  Also used on Reisings in its various roles were leather and canvas slings existing in military and police inventories.  A sling designed specifically for the Reising came into service with the U.S. Marine Corps in 1943.  It is a mustard colored sling that looks like an M1 Carbine sling, but is marked "U.S.M.C." and "Boyt -43-" close to the lift-the-dot snap.  The main difference between the Reising sling and the M1 Carbine sling, besides markings, is that the Reising sling, when placed on the weapon, has added space between where the sling loops through the front sling swivel, and the lift-the-dot snap.  This allows the use of a second keeper for retention, if desired, based on feedback from Marines about the tendency of the lift-the-dot snap to sometimes unsnap.  

Special Note, 2/4/10: A reproduction Reising sling is currently on the market, being sold on Ebay as an M1 Carbine and "Riesling" (sic) sling.  Although the seller does not know how to spell the name correctly, this sling does appear original at a glance.  I have obtained one, and a picture of it is featured in comparison to an original below.  The sling is marked the same as the original in the picture below, however it is a light yellowish color instead of the darker mustard color of the original.  If you are familiar with the Kerr/NoBuckl 1914 slings, and the shorter, mustard color Thompson slings of WWII, the color of the original is the same, while the reproduction is much lighter colored.  The reproduction is also approximately 3 1/2" longer than the original.  Originals are about 42" long, while the reproduction slings are about 45 1/2" long. The "D" end tabs of the original appear to have been swaged, and the reproduction tabs appear to have been placed in a press, and then pounded, and are also not as uniformlyshaped as the original "D" end tabs.  

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David Albert Collection

7.  Reising Cleaning Rod

The Reising cleaning rod is made of 1/4" steel wire, and measures 22 15/16" in length.  The tip is 1 13/16" long.  The loop handle is 1 11/16" wide, and 1 3/4" long to where the loop end stops.  There are no known reproductions, however one person is considering reproducing the Reising cleaning rod in the future.

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Above Images David Albert Collection

8.  .45 ACP Ammunition Specifically for Reisings

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The Dairt Co. of New York, NY manufactured ammunition specifically for use in Reising Submachine Guns.  A statement to this effect is featured on both the long sides of the Dairt ammunition boxes.  The bottom of the Dairt boxes are blank, except for a lot number stamp.

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Many Dairt .45 ammunition boxes encountered today have pasteover labels on both of the long sides of the box to indicate they contained reloaded ammunition.  This was probably a result of the War Production Board (WPB) controls during World War II, and the fact that most new production ammunition was allocated to national defense.  Federal Laboratories sold reloaded .45 ACP ammunition, probably including the Dairt brand.  On July 17, 1943, War Production Board Limitation Order L-286 released reloaded ammunition for open sale.

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The box below features one side where the reload label has been removed at some point in its life.  Underneath, the original statement regarding the Reising can be seen.

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Above Images David Albert Collection

This Remington Kleanbore ammunition was specifically designed for use in several .45 caliber weapons, including the Thompson Submachine Gun, and the Reising Submachine Gun.

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Above Images David Albert Collection

Helpful Hints

1.  Broken Firing Pins

Broken firing pins are probably the most commonly encountered issue with Reisings.  PaulF on this board posted an excellent "How To" regarding a solution to this problem.  The post may be found at the following link:


2.  Compensator Fin Breakage

Unfortunately, the metal fins in the Reising compensator are thin, and prone to breakage during firing.  At least one person has designed a device to cover the compensator, and prevent the fins from breakage, but the device causes some cosmetic damage to the compensator itself.  Here are some pictures of the device made by jim c 351.  The last picture shows one of the two retaining screws that insert between the compensator fins to prevent slippage.

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3.  Disassembly and Assembly

Disassembly photo sequences from the 1942 H&R Reising Manual can be viewed at the following link:

Field Disassembly: (Once image has loaded, click on it for finer detail.)




Detailed Disassembly and Assembly: (Once image has loaded, click on it for finer detail.)


Above Images David Albert Collection

4.  Military Troubleshooting Guide

The following is a charted excerpt of troubleshooting tips from "The State Defense Force Manual," which was published from 1940 to 1944 for use by various State National Guard units.  The versions of the manual from 1942 to 1944 include a section on the Reising Submachine Gun.  Please keep in mind, these instructions were intended for military armorers.  Please exercise extreme caution should you attempt any of these repairs, and understand that you do so at your own risk.  

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* I would like to acknowledge the late Jeff Reising, and his family for the opportunity to acquire Jeff's collection of Reising paperwork in early March, 2011.  The items will add to the study of the various Reising firearm designs, and my intent is to make much of the content available for others to see through this website.  If an item is noted with an asterisk next to "David Albert Collection," it originated from the late Jeff Reising's collection of paperwork.

These materials are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws.
Copyright 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 © David Albert
  • 5

#217563 My First Thompson

Posted by thecoltguy on 27 March 2020 - 07:29 PM

I have been a Colt collector for the past fifty plus years but I just received my first Thompson. It's a 1921AC and the serial number is 4001. It was shipped to the Trenton, New Jersey Police Department C/O Captain W. Walter on 6/3/25. As it turns out Captain Walter had a checkered past as he was tied in with the mob and ended up in Federal prison for a couple of years. 



  • 5

#102026 Ammunition For The Thompson Submachine Gun

Posted by dalbert on 28 August 2010 - 01:27 PM

Please bear with me...This page became corrupted in October 2013, and I'm attempting to rebuild it in November 2014...


David Albert


These materials are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws.

Copyright 2010-2014 © David Albert

This pinned post is intended to be a collector reference guide for ammunition associated with the Thompson Submachine Gun during its service life. Please feel free to provide your input, and any images used will have the person's name or screen name credited below the image(s). Any photos of items you would like to include may be sent to David Albert at dalbert@sturmgewehr.com.

Whenever possible, I will include a photo of the cartridge headstamp, as seen in some instances below. I have included some estimated dates, and will attempt to confirm the dates as closely as possible through further research.

History of Updates:

8/28/10: 12 different types of Thompson ammunition posted

8/29/10: Added variation of Western Lubaloy ammo

8/30/10: Added Frankford Arsenal Tracer, 1935 Stembridge Movie Blanks and Peters Rustless-Riot Cartridges

8/31/10: Added Peters Cartridge Company .45 Auto Shot Smokeless C.F. Cartridges (2 different varieties)

9/2/10: Added ECS 43 Headstamp, Steel-Cased .45 ammo, and Remington Kleanbore Hi-Way Master ammo

9/3/10: Added Stembridge Gun Rentals at Paramount Pictures Thompson Blanks

9/4/10: Added CBC Brazilian Thompson Ammo, Peters Rustless .45 Colt Auto, Peters Cartridge Company .45 Auto Shot Smokeless C.F. Cartridges with "Shot" Label Added, Olin Corporation Ball M1911, and Early USSCO Ammo

9/12/10: Added Peters Rustless .45 Automatic Government Model Ammo, made separate category for riot and shotshell rounds, added rattle round and 2 variations of Peters shotshell boxes

10/1/10: Added Mid-1960's Peters .45 Ammo

10/2/10: Added U.S. Military .45 ACP Small Game Hunting Ammunition section with 4 different ammo types, another photo of early Peters Shot Cartridges, and table of contents

2/12/11: Added example of 1942 Evansville Ordnance ammo box, and Winchester Ammo Captured and Relabeled by the Japanese during WWII, and Winchester .45 Automatic Colt Late 1930's Staynless Ammunition

2/19/11: Added German Manufactured/Swiss Stamped 1941 TSMG Ammo

2/20/11: Added Winchester Staynless 1920's Ammo

9/4/11: Added Winchester .45 Ammunition "For Use in Sub-Machine Guns," 1941

9/29/11: Added WWII Frankford Arsenal .45 ACP Ball Ammo

10/2/11: Added Tracer version of “Dogbone” .45 ammo, and Ellis Hollywood Blanks

3/20/12: Added Remington Arms Military .45 ACP Box, 1942

1/26/13: Added 1944 Remington Ball Ammo, 1948 and 1974 Brazilian CBC Ammo

5/9/13: Added Australian .450 Thompson SMG Ammo

10/5/13: Added Peters Rustless-Gildkote Ammo, and Early Remington-UMC

Thompson Ammunition Reference Post Table of Contents:

1. Commercial .45 ACP Ball Ammunition

2. Commercial Riot (Rattle) Rounds and Riot Shotshell Ammunition

3. Hollywood Blank Ammunition

4. Foreign Ammunition

5. U.S. Military Ball Ammunition

6. U.S. Military .45 ACP Small Game Hunting Ammunition

Commercial .45 ACP Ball Ammunition

Early Remington-UMC .45 Automatic Colt Smokeless: Circa Late 1910's


joseph12297 Collection

Remington-UMC .45 Automatic Colt Smokeless: Circa Late 1910's

David Albert Collection

United States Cartridge Company (Often abbreviated "USCCO"): Circa Late 1910's

James M Collection

Peters Cartridge Company .45 Colt Auto C.F. Cartridges: Mid 1920's

Above Images David Albert Collection

United States Cartridge Company (Often abbreviated "USCCO"): Late 1920's

This is the type of cartridge that was unfortunately used in the St. Valentine's Day Massacre. The bullets are lead, and the batch used in the massacre had a unique feature, in that each lead bullet was marked by the manufacturer with an "S." Not all bullets in this package style had the "S" marking.

David Albert Collection

Winchester .45 Automatic Colt Full Patch Staynless: Late 1920's

This type of ammunition was commonly added as a sales incentive/discount for Colt Thompson Submachine Guns when sold by early Auto-Ordnance salesman E.E. Richardson, as documented in many sales invoices of the period.

Tracie Hill Collection

Peters Rustless .45 Colt Auto: 1930's

The back of the ammunition box indicates it can be used in Colt Automatics Pistols, Thompson Submachine Guns, and Model 1917 Pistols with moon clips.

Above Images Mike Sig Collection

Peters Rustless -Gildkote.45 Colt Auto: 1930's


This ammunition mentions use in the Thompson Submachine Gun.



Above Images joseph12297 Collection

Winchester .45 Automatic Colt Auto (Staynless/Oilproof): Late 1930's

Above Images David Albert Collection

Dairt Co. Inc. .45 Automatic Central Fire Smokeless Cartridges: WWII

Dairt ammunition was manufactured specifically for the Reising Submachine Gun, but was also likely used in the Thompson. This was commercially available ammunition mannufactured during WWII, controlled and rationed by the War Production Board. Most of it probably went to Police consumption. Many of the cartridges were subsequently reloaded by Dairt, and reloaded ammunition had labels applied over the original print on the long side of the box. Examples can be seen below.

Above Images David Albert Collection

Winchester .45 Ammunition "For Use in Sub-Machine Guns," 1941

This full box of ammmunition resides in Britain, and was probably a part of Lend-Lease from the United States. This full box is dated on the side in a black ink rubber stamp '1 NOV 41' and under that, 'LOT 76'.

tranteruk Collection

Remington-UMC Kleanbore .45 Automatic Colt

This ammunition in its various forms is referred to by collectors as the "Dogbone" style packaging, based on the shape of the Kleanbore logo.

David Albert Collection

Remington-UMC Kleanbore .45 Automatic Colt Tracer

David Albert Collection

Western Cartridges "Lubaloy" .45 Automatic: Circa 1940's

The back of the Western box mentions use in the Thompson:

Above Images David Albert Collection

This Western box is noted with "Full Metal Case," instead of "Metal Case" as can be seen on the previous box.

David Albert Collection

Peters Rustless .45 Automatic Government Model: Circa Early 1950's

This box was made by the Peters Cartridge Division of the Remington Arms Company, Inc., in Bridgeport, CT. It features the DuPont trademark, since Remington was a division of DuPont at that time.

David Albert Collection

Remington Kleanbore .45 Automatic: Circa 1950's

The ammunition box indicates on the back that it is suitable for both the Thompson and Reising Submachine Guns.

Above Images David Albert Collection

Remington Kleanbore .45 Automatic Hi-Way Master: Circa 1950's

Intended for law enforcement use, these were 173-grain "metal-penetrating bullets."

The back of the box is similar to the 230-grain Kleanbore ammunition shown above, which indicated its intended use in Thompson and Reising Submachine Guns. The 173-grain Hi-Way Master ammunition indicates it is intended for all submachine guns.

Above Images Brian Marvin Collection

Remington .45 Automatic 230 Grain: Circa Late 1950's

David Albert Collection

Peters Center Fire Cartridges (45 Automatic 230 Grain Metal Case): Circa Mid-1960's

This cartridge box dates from the mid 1960's, and is definitely post-1962, based on the "Warning - Keep Out of Reach Of Children" label.

David Albert Collection

Commercial Riot (Rattle) Rounds and Riot Shotshell Ammunition

Remington-UMC .45 Automatic Riot Smokeless (Rattle Rounds): Circa Early 1920's

The unique photo below is originally from the H.P. White Laboratories collection, and it documents a box of "Rattle Rounds" that had the over-labels steamed off, and pasted to the file card. This box was originally produced for a 200-grain metal cased bullet loading. The side of the box was over-labeled to indicate "Specially Adapted for .45 Automatic Colt and Thompson Sub-Machine Gun."

Above Images John Moss Collection

Peters Cartridge Company .45 Auto Shot Smokeless C.F. Cartridges with Shot Label Added: Mid 1920's

These shot cartridges were packaged in Peters .45 ACP boxes originally marked for the Colt Automatic Pistol. They had labels applied to cover the "Colt Automatic Pistol" section of the original label.

Tracie Hill Collection

The side of the box also has the Shot label applied:

Above Images Mike Sig Collection

Another example of the above box with "Adapted to the Thompson Sub-Machine Gun Only" label added:

John Moss Collection

Peters Cartridge Company .45 Auto Shot Smokeless C.F. Cartridges: Mid 1920's

Brian Marvin Collection

Another box of the ammunition above with 2 extra labels applied - One indicating the patent date, and another indicating an 18-shot maximum loading of the magazine:

Brian Marvin Collection

Another example with an ink stamp added, indicating, "RIOT (Trademark) Cartridge."

John Moss Collection

Peters Rustless-Riot Cartridges: Mid 1920's (Without Address On Front)

Above Images Mike Sig Collection

Peters Rustless-Riot Cartridges: Mid 1920's

Above Images Brian Marvin Collection

Peters .45 Auto Shot Cartridges: Mid 1930's

The back of the box indicates the shot cartridges are adapted specifically for the Thompson Submachine Gun, and intended for law enforcement use.

Above Images Lyn Pedersen Collection

Hollywood Blank Ammunition

Stembridge Movie Gun Rental Thompson Blanks: 1935

These are blanks made By Stembridge (Movie Gun Rental Company) from a Remington-UMC batch of .45 ammunition.

Above Images Brian Marvin Collection

Ellis Mercantile Co. .45 Caliber Machine Gun Blanks: Circa 1960’s

These blanks are made from cut down and crimped .30-06 shell casings, and are the type used during filming of the 1960’s television show “Combat!” The unfired shell was recovered from one of sites where the series was filmed.

Above Image Marty Black Collection

Stembridge Gun Rentals at Paramount Pictures Thompson Blanks: 1980

James M Collection

Foreign Ammunition

German Sinoxid (RWS) .45 Thompson Ammunition (Swiss Stamped): 1941

This is the most intriguing box of .45 ammunition I have ever encountered. Manufactured by RWS in Nurenburg, Germany, apparently in April, 1941, and sold to a Swiss sporting goods store that still exists today. It has a Swiss tax stamp on it, and is unopened.





Above Images Tracie Hill Collection


Australian .450 Thompson SMG Ammunition: 1943/44

These boxes are dated October 1943 and January 1944. The January 1944 box contains both 1943 and 1944 headstamps.





Above Images David Albert Collection


Belgian Military Thompson SMG Ammunition: 1952

The Belgian military adopted the Thompson Submachine Gun after WWII, and .45 ammunition was produced for the use of their armed forces.

Above Images David Albert Collection

French Military Thompson SMG Ammunition: 1956-57

The French military adopted the Thompson under emergency conditions in 1939, purchasing 3000 of the final remaining Colt Thompsons in Auto-Ordnance inventory. The Colts saw service in Vichy France, mostly as police guns, under Nazi occupation, and some were also taken to Britain from Dunkirk. Many also ended up in German hands. After the war, the French continued to use WWII era Thompsons they acquired from the U.S., and the weapon served at least until 1959. The cartridges shown below were made for the Thompson, and all observed examples are dated 1956-57.

Above Images David Albert Collection

CBC Brazilian Thompson SMG Ammunition: 1948





Quality control markings:


Above Images Gunner1 Collection

CBC Brazilian Thompson SMG Ammunition: 1966

This unique box of .45 ammunition indicates it is intended for the Thompson Submachine Gun, and was loaded on 6/6/66 with a powder lot dating from 9/24/61.



Above Images Ron & Kelly Brock Collection

CBC Brazilian Thompson SMG Ammunition: 1974



Above Images Gunner1 Collection

U.S. Military Ball Ammunition

While I am not planning to include different lot codes, etc., I would like to document U.S. Military .45 ACP ammunition of different box types, and by different manufacturers in this section.

Evansville Ordnance PlantRemington Arms Company, Inc., 1942

This appears to be a transitional box, as it utilizes the old, 20-round box stencil.

Above Images David Albert Collection

Evansville Ordnance Plant: 1942

Jim Kindred Collection

ECS 43 Headstamp, Steel-Cased: 1943

Above Images Anonymous Collection

Remington 45 ACP Ball Ammo: 1944

Above Images Gunner1 Collection

Frankford Arsenal .45 ACP Ball Ammo: WWII

Timelapse Collection

Frankford Arsenal Tracer, M26: Unknown Date

Brian Marvin Collection

Olin Mathieson Chemical Corporation, WCC 62 Headstamp: 1962

Above Images David Albert Collection

Olin Corporation Ball M1911: Unknown Date

James M Collection

U.S. Military .45 ACP Small Game Hunting Ammunition

While this ammunition is not specifically intended for the Thompson, it was issued for small game hunting, and used in the M1911 pistol, and the Thompson. It was not intended for use against the enemy, and had very limited range.

Cartridge Shot Caliber .45, T23, Remington Arms Company: 1942

John Moss Collection

Cartridge Shot Caliber .45 M12, Evansville Ordnance Plant (WWII)

John Moss Collection

Cartridges, Shot Cal. .45 M15, Remington Arms (WWII)

John Moss Collection

Cartridges Shot Cal. .45 M15, Remington Arms (Unknown Date)

John Moss Collection

These materials are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws.

Copyright 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 © David Albert

  • 5

#224463 MachineGunBoards.com 2020 Virtual Thompson Show - FUN Challenge

Posted by TD. on 09 November 2020 - 09:27 PM


A very nice display. However, that stuff in your post is nearly 100 years old. Thompson enthusiasts are getting tired of the Colt's. Their time has passed...actually, long ago. Oscar and Theodore have moved on. And those overpriced very old C drums. You can do better than that! What's with the silver dollar? Again, tokens of a past age. How many are in your pocket right now?


Shown below is the modern era of the Thompson submachine gun...before the government shut everything down in 1986. With a little help from our friend in Delta, Colorado, notwithstanding the 5 year wait, this Model of 1928 Thompson gun from the state of New York is hands down better than that very old relic of yours. Oh, this new C drum from Taiwan works just as well and costs only a few C notes. Oscar would be proud. This C drum is used all time. And yours?


For all you West Hurley owners hiding in the closet, this West Hurley is for you!   


West Hurley meet West Hurley.JPG


These West Hurley's work!.jpg


Great Thread SIG  ;)

  • 4

#217855 Isolation activity...

Posted by deerslayer on 05 April 2020 - 06:27 PM

I only took one picture but running the mill on a Philly receiver was a great way to spend some social distancing....   It went bang today!

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#216726 Rusted Thompson M1A1 Restoration

Posted by Quintilian on 02 March 2020 - 03:28 PM

Hello everybody ! 




I'm writing you from Banja Luka, the capital of Republic of Srpska (Bosnia and Herzegovina, part of former Yugoslavia). I'm a passionate gun enthusiast since childhood and for many years restoration of old "Tommy guns" is a hobby of mine.


Here's a story


"Despite Josip Broz Tito's  firm adherence to communism, because of the ideological note and personal conflict with Joseph Stalin, the Soviet Union - and thereafter all the Warsaw Pact's pro-Soviet governments - denounced his treaty of friendship with Yugoslavia on September 27, 1949.  For some time it seemed to be a serious threat and a real danger of an intervention of the country by his former allies, so Yugoslavia accepted readily the American offer of assistance. 


There were even discussions at that time on its possible inclusion into North-Western Alliance.


The Mutual Defense Assistance Act (An Act to promote the foreign policy and provide for the defense and general welfare of the United States by furnishing military assistance to foreign nations) was a United States Act of Congress signed by President Harry S. Truman on 6 October 1949.


Following negotiations, an agreement on military assistance was concluded in Belgrade on November 14, 1951, between the governments of the (then) Federal People's Republic of Yugoslavia and the United States. The agreement was signed by Marshal Tito and George V. Allen, US Ambassador in Belgrade. Under this agreement, Yugoslavia is included in The Mutual Defence Assistance Programme.


Thompson M1 and M1A1 submachine guns were delivered to the government of the Federal People's Republic of Yugoslavia (over 34000 pieces). Yugoslav armed forces received during this period standard NATO military equipment and arms - such as the F-86 and F-84 Thunderjet jet fighters or M36 Jackson and M18 Hellcat tank-destroyers."



This is my restoration project. Heavy rusted and pitted Thompson M1A1 (S - Savage), before and after restoration. Thompson had been forgotten in the attic (old house in the mountain village, Bosnia and Herzegovina) for 70+ years.



Sincerely, Draško Dragosavljević




fotke s telefona 582.jpg


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Electrolytic Rust Removal



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Brushing and sanding




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After bead blasting



fotke s telefona 1860.jpg


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Hot blued (and heavily coated with cosmoline)




























Yugoslav People's Army soldiers with Thompsons. 1950s.
















  • 4

#209514 Pictures of 1921 Thompson at Kilmainham Gaol Dublin.

Posted by WinSten on 27 July 2019 - 07:36 AM

Im in Dublin for a few weeks and yesterday I had the chance to
visit Kilmainham Gaol Dublin. It was quite a moving experience.
I highly recommend visiting it while in Ireland.
Also I managed to take few pictures of the Thompson model 1921
Serial # 232 they have on display.

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#186212 A Tribute To My Dad He Loved His Thompson

Posted by Melvin on 11 November 2017 - 03:41 PM

​My dad was a double purple heart WW II vet. He carried a Thompson through most of the war. But preferred the Grease Gun as it was lighter. I was lucky he was able to shoot my 1st Thompson but I never took a picture. A great man and father.

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#186188 Lest We Forget

Posted by Devious6 on 11 November 2017 - 07:32 AM

Not a Thompson, but this is my Dad in boot camp in 1946 having just qualified as high shooter in his platoon.


Dad - Large.jpg




And this is me as a battalion commander in Bosnia 50 years later in 1996.


Bosnia MRE.jpeg

  • 4

#167283 SAR Article on the NAC Thompson

Posted by SAR-Ross on 03 June 2016 - 10:19 AM

Good morning gentlemen,


I have unlocked Mr. Davis's article mention in this post- you all can enjoy the full contents of the article without having a subscription to SAR. I will also unlock the next article in this series when we make it available online. 


Ross Herman

Small Arms Review magazine


  • 4

#157438 BSA TSMG Prototype .45 Cal

Posted by PTRS-14.5 on 24 October 2015 - 02:46 PM

TD and all,


Here are more images... The last owner never had this TSMG open and it was full of varnish and dried up crude...What a smuck. 


I'm not too impressed with the Brits attempt here to build a TSMG knock off / improvement.  The TSMG was clearly at the end of its developmental life!

  • 4

#114899 Individual Reputation Point System On Machinegunboards.com

Posted by jim c 351 on 25 March 2012 - 08:13 AM

Huh! So thats what that number represents. I was always afraid to ask. I thought that I was on double secret probation and the number represented demerits. I figured once I hit a certain number of demerits, dalbert would push a red button and blow up my computer.
Well I see that I got one point for starting the MOH- Hall of Valor pinned section. So obviously David should receive same for all the pinned sections he started.
I will take the initiative and award Dave for the top of his pinned section and other members can award for his other pinned section.
We must get our leader into the double digits.
Jim C
  • 4

#111556 Medal Of Honor - Victoria Cross - Thompson Hall Of Valor

Posted by jim c 351 on 07 December 2011 - 10:16 PM



Medal of Honor

Thompson Hall of Valor


Reading accounts of Medal of Honor recipients has fascinated me since I was in high school in 1960. In the 11th grade we were given a patriotic pamphlet containing the story of Sgt. John Basilone. In the school library I read the accounts of Sgt. Leonard Funk and Sgt. Charles Kelly.


Over the years I formed certain impressions about the MOH. How does one qualify for the award? Is it awarded fairly? Well, to qualify several things should take place.


1. There should be a great risk to ones life.

2. The recipient must kill large numbers of enemy troops—or

3. Save a large number of friendly lives

4. Ideally all of the above.

Saving your squads lives while losing yours is almost a sure thing. The squad feels obligated to do something to return the favor.


What about fairness? NO WAY. Some soldiers were killed or crippled and did not receive the MOH. A case in point is Sgt. Al Schmidt. While manning a M1917, 30 cal. BMG, Schmidt killed a large number of Japanese soldiers and did not receive the award. Sgt John Basilone and Sgt. Mitchell Paige did almost the exact same thing and were awarded the MOH. Did I mention that Al Schmidt did much of his shooting while blind?? How could such an injustice happen? I would like to elaborate further with two extreme examples. 1. On the first extreme we have Gen Douglas McArthur. Gen McArthur was awarded the MOH for following a presidential order to bug out to Australia. A cheap political stunt on Roosevelt’s part that diminishes the esteem of our highest award... 2. On the other extreme we have S/Sgt Harrison G Summers. S/Sgt Summers was given 15 men and a mission that required a company. The mission was to kill or capture an artillery battery of 80 Germans poised to shell Omaha beach. The success of his mission would save hundreds of American lives. His squad refused to help him. It was just Sgt Summers and his Tommy gun. History shows that’s all it took. S/Sgt Summers was not awarded the MOH. More info below.




I recently became aware that the board owner, David Albert, once studied Medal of Honor recipients and was fortunate enough to have met several such heroes. Since this is a Thompson site, I asked David if he thought there would be any interest in starting a Hall Of Valor for those soldiers and Marines who were awarded the MOH while using a Thompson gun, either exclusively or significantly. David thought it might receive a favorable response.


To qualify, the Thompson had to be used in the actual action that resulted in receiving the award. Case in point, #1-- Lt. Audie L Murphy used a Thompson at times in WWII. However, in the action that resulted in receiving the award, Lt Murphy used a Carbine, 50 cal. BMG and a field phone. So Audie Murphy will not be in our Hall Of Valor. Case in point #2—Sgt Charles Kelly normally used a BAR. But in covering the withdrawal of his company, Sgt. Kelly used a Thompson in addition to many other weapons. Therefore Sgt Kelly will be in our Thompson Hall of Valor.


I guess everyone has their favorite hero. My favorite is 1st Sgt Leonard Funk and Sgt Funk will top the list. Who among us, upon having an enemy soldier stick a 9m/m SMG in our gut and ordering us to surrender, would do anything except shit our pants. Well, Sgt. Funk often told his soldiers, “Boys, as long as I have ammunition and the strength to pull the trigger, I’ll never surrender”. As you will read in Sgt Funk’s citation, it wasn’t idle chatter.


Perhaps some of you will have a favorite MOH recipient who used a Thompson gun in the action. Please nominate your candidate and David and I will add them to the roster.


I hope at least some will find this subject interesting.


Jim C 351


Thompson Hall of Valor Inductees


First Sergeant Leonard Alfred Funk Jr.


MOH Action --- Jan 1945

Recipient ID #2199

“C” Company, 1st Battalion, 508th PIR, 82nd ABN DIV, U.S. Army




1Lt. John Joseph Tominac


MOH Action - 12-Sep-44

Recipient ID #1952

I Co., 15th US Inf., 3rd ID




1Lt. David Crowder Waybur


MOH Action - 17 Jul 43

Recipient ID #604

3d Reconnaissance Troop, 3rd Inf. Div.




Tech Sergeant Van Thomas Barfoot


MOH Action --- May 1944

Recipient ID #3065

“L” Company, 3rd Battalion, 157th Inf Reg, 45th INF DIV, U.S. Army





Private Michael “Mike” Colalillo


MOH Action --- Apr 1945

Recipient ID #2374

“C” Company, 1st Battalion, 398th Inf Reg, 100th INF DIV, U.S. Army





Staff Sergeant Freeman Victor Horner


MOH Action --- Nov 1944

Recipient ID #990

“K” Company, 2nd Battalion, 30th Inf Reg, 30th INF DIV, U.S. Army





Lieutenant Daniel K. Inouye (Current U.S. Senator from Hawaii)


MOH Action --- Apr 1945

Recipient ID #573

“E” Company,2nd Battalion, 442nd Reg Combat Team, 92nd INF DIV, U.S. Army





Private George Taro Sakato


MOH Action --- Oct 1944

Recipient ID #1134

“E” Company, 2nd Battalion, 442nd Reg Combat Team, 36th INF DIV, U.S. Army


Note: Official citation does not mention using a TSMG. Other sources say that Pvt Sakato used a TSMG until he ran out of ammo, then used a P38 pistol





Sergeant Sylvester Antolak


Posthumous Award

MOH Action --- May 1944

Recipient ID #2905

“B” Company, 15th Inf Reg, 3rd INF DIV, U.S. Army





Corporal Charles E. Kelly


MOH Action --- Sep 1943

Recipient ID # 390

“L” Company, 3rd Battalion, 143rd Inf Reg, 36th INF DIV, U.S. Army


Note: Official citation does not mention using a TSMG. Other sources say that Corp. Kelly used a TSMG in between the 2 BARs that he burned up.




1st Lieutenant Edgar Harold Lloyd


Posthumous Award

MOH Action --- Jan 1945

Recipient ID #691

“E” Company, 319th Inf Reg, 80th Inf Div, U.S. Army




Sergeant Harold O. Messerschmidt


Posthumous Award

MOH Action --- Sep 1944

Recipient ID #1209

“L” Company,30th Inf Reg, 3rd Inf Div, U.S. Army




PFC Joe Nishimoto


Posthumous Award - Upgraded from original Distinguished Service Cross by President Clinton in 2000

MOH Action --- Nov 1944

Recipient ID # 1688

“G” Company, 2nd Battalion, 442nd Reg Combat Team, 36th Inf Div, U.S. Army




Staff Sergeant Paul Luther Bolden


MOH Action --- Dec 1944

Recipient ID #2560

“I” Company, 120th Inf Reg, 30th Inf Div, U.S. Army




1st Lieutenant Eli Lamar Whiteley


MOH Action --- Nov 1944

Recipient ID # 785

“L” Company, 15th Inf Reg, 3rd Inf Div, U.S. Army




Sergeant Charles Andrew MacGillivary


MOH action --- Jan 1945

Recipient ID # 369

“I” Company, 463rd Battalion, 71st Inf Reg, 44th Inf Div, U.S. Army




Lieutenant Edward Dahlgren


MOH action --- Feb 1944

Recipient ID # 737

“E” Company, 2nd Battalion, 142nd Inf Reg, 36th Inf Div, U.S. Army




Technical Sergeant Morris Crain


Posthumous Award

MOH Action --- Mar 1945

Recipient ID # 2416

“E” Company, 141st Inf Reg, 36th Inf Div, U.S. Army




Sergeant Emile Deleau Jr.


Posthumous Award

MOH Action --- Feb 1945

Recipient ID # 805

“A” Company, 142nd Inf Reg, 36th Inf Div, U.S. Army




Harold Herman Moon, Jr.


Posthumous Award

MOH Action --- Oct 1944

Recipient ID # 1206

“G” Company, 34th Inf Reg, 24th Inf Div, U.S. Army




Jesse Ray Drowley


MOH Action --- Jan 1944
Recipient ID # 1677
“B” Company, 1st Battalion, 132nd Inf Reg, Americal Div, U.S. Army




Francis Junior Pierce


MOH Action --- Mar 1945

Pharmacist's Mate First Class

2nd Battalion, 24th Marines, 4th Marine Div, U.S. Navy




1st Lt Robert T Waugh


Posthumous Award

MOH action --May 1944

Recipient ID # 2786

339th Infantry Regiment, 85th Infantry Division




SSG Homer L. Wise


MOH Action - June 14, 1944

Recipient ID # 1363

L Co, 142nd Inf Reg, 36th Inf. Div.




SGT Chris Carr


MOH Action -  October 01 & 2, 1944

Recipient ID# 485

L Co, 337th Inf Rgt, 85th Inf Div




PFC James H. Diamond


MOH Action - May 08 - 14, 1945

Recipient ID # 1567

D Co, 21st Inf Reg, 24th Inf Div




Cpl. Paul Bert Huff


MOH Action - 8-Feb-44

Recipient ID # 2553

A Co, 509th PIB, 5th Army








Victoria Cross

Thompson Hall of Valor


9/4/17- We have members from the UK, Canada, and Australia on this board, and when member “rpbcps” posted about a Victoria Cross recipient who used a Thompson during his act of valor, it seemed appropriate to add a section to the Medal of Honor pinned post that honors Commonwealth recipients of the equivalent award.


Here is a summary, courtesy of member “rpbcps”:


The Victoria Cross is the highest award for gallantry that a British and Commonwealth serviceman can achieve. The Victoria Cross is forever linked with acts of extreme bravery and the original document associated with the medal stated that it could only be awarded for “gallantry of the highest order”. The VC was introduced on 29 January 1856 by Queen Victoria to honour acts of valour during the Crimean War. Since then, the medal has been awarded 1,358 times to 1,355 individual recipients.


The bronze for the Victoria Cross came from a captured Chinese-made cannon used by the Russians at Sebastopol during the Crimean War. What is left of the metal is kept at the Donnington army base in Shropshire, a base I have visited many times during my service with an Explosive Ordnance Disposal Reserve Sqn. The London jewellers Hancocks, based in the Burlington Arcade in London, make the medals and I read that there is only enough metal left at Donnington, to make less than 80 more medals.


The following are known Victoria Cross recipients who used Thompson Submachine Guns...


Cpl. J.A. French


VC Action - 4-Sep-42

2/9 Infantry Battalion


Milne Bay in New Guinea saw the first defeat on land for the Imperial Japanese army in WW2.The Australians had to drive the Japanese out of each position in a series of actions typical of the one in which Corporal J.A. French took part.


 On the 4th Sept. 1942, Cpl. French was leading a section of soldiers whose was advance was held up by fire from three Japanese machine-gun positions. Cpl French ordered the soldiers to take cover and crawled close enough to knock out two of the positions with hand grenades, he then charged the third position firing a Thompson SMG from the hip. He ran into a hail of bullets and was mortally wounded, but he kept moving and firing until he fell dead at the position.</div>


Cpl French had killed all three machine-gun crews, an action that was responsible for keeping Australian casualties to a minimum and added greatly to the successful conclusion of the attack. He was posthumously awarded a Victoria Cross




Sgt. William Henry "Bill" Kibby

2/48th Infantry Battalion,  Second Australian Imperial Force


In 1942, he was a sergeant in the 2/48th Infantry Battalion, during the North African campaign.


At the Second Battle of El Alamein, during the period of 23–31 October 1942, Kibby distinguished himself through his skill in leading a platoon, after his commander had been killed, during the initial attack at Miteiriya Ridge. On 23 October, he charged a machine gun position, firing at it with his Thompson submachine gun; Kibby killed three enemy soldiers, captured 12 others and took the position. His company commander intended to recommend him for the Distinguished Conduct Medal after this action, but was killed. During the following days, Kibby moved among his men directing fire and cheering them on. He mended his platoon's telephone line several times under intense fire. On 30–31 October, the platoon came under intense machine gun and mortar fire. Most of them were killed or wounded. In order to achieve his company's objective, Kibby moved forward alone, to within a few metres of the enemy, throwing grenades to destroy them. Just as his success in this endeavour appeared certain, he was killed.


His Victoria Cross was awarded posthumously and is displayed at the Australian War Memorial. He is buried at the Commonwealth War Grave at El Alamein.



Lieutenant George Arthur Knowland

Royal Norfolk Regiment, attached to No. 1 Commando


In Burma on 31st January, 1945, near Kangaw, Lieutenant George Arthur Knowland was commanding the forward platoon of a Troop positioned on the extreme North of a hill which was subjected to very heavy and repeated enemy attacks throughout the whole day. Before the first attack started, Lieutenant Knowland's platoon was heavily mortared and machine gunned, yet he moved about among his men keeping them alert and encouraging them, though under fire himself at the time. When the enemy, some 300 strong in all, made their first assault they concentrated all their efforts on his platoon of 24 men, but, in spite of the ferocity of the attack, he moved about from trench to trench distributing ammunition, and firing his rifle and throwing grenades at the enemy, often from completely exposed positions.


Later, when the crew of one of his forward Bren Guns had all been wounded, he sent back to Troop Headquarters for another crew and ran forward to man the gun himself until they arrived. The enemy was then less than 10 yards from him in dead ground down the hill, so, in order to get a better field of fire, he stood on top of the trench, firing the light machine gun from his hip, and successfully keeping them at a distance until a Medical Orderly had dressed and evacuated the wounded men behind him. The new Bren team also became casualties on the way up, and Lieutenant Knowland continued to fire the gun until another team took over.


Later, when a fresh attack came in, he took over a 2 in. Mortar and in spite of heavy fire and the closeness of the enemy, he stood up in the open to face them, firing the mortar from his hip and killing six of them with his first bomb. When all bombs were expended he went back through heavy grenade, mortar and machine gun fire to get more, which he fired in the same way from the open in front of his platoon positions. When those bombs were finished, he went back to his own trench, and still standing up fired his rifle at them. Being hard pressed and with enemy closing in on him from only 10 yards away, he had no time to re-charge his magazine. Snatching up the Tommy gun of a casualty, he sprayed the enemy and was mortally wounded stemming this assault, though not before he had killed and wounded many of the enemy.



Naik Agamsing Rai

5th Gurkha Rifles

Burma 26th June 1944


This position was now under intense fire form the .37 millimeter gun in the jungle and from 'Water Piquet', Naik Agamsing Rai at once advanced towards the gun, his section without hesitation following their gallant leader. Intense fire reduced the section to three men before half the distance had been covered but they pressed on to their objective. Arriving at close range, Naik Agamsing Rai killed three of the crew and his men killed the other two. The party then returned to 'Mortar Bluff' where the rest of their platoon were forming up for the final assault on 'Water Piquet'. In the subsequent advance, heavy machine-gun fire and showers of grenades from an isolated bunker position caused further casualties. Once more, with indomitable courage, Naik Agamsing Rai, covered by his Bren gunner advanced alone with a grenade in one hand and his Thompson sub-machine gun in the other. Through devastating fire he reached the enemy position and with his grenade and bursts form his Thompson sub-machine gun killed all four occupants of the bunker.



Rifleman Thaman Gurung

5th Gurkha Rifles

Italy 10th November 1944


.....By Skilful Stalking both scouts reached the position undetected... Realizing that if the enemy opened fire the section would sustain heavy casualties, Rifleman Thaman leapt to his feet and charged. The enemy completely taken by surprise surrendered without opening fire.


He then crept to the summit from which he saw a party a Germans well dug in on the reverse slopes.....Riifleman Thaman crossed the bare skyline firing his tommy gun, thus allowing the forward section to reach the summit.


Soon afterwards, due to heavy enemy machine-gun fire, the fighting patrol was ordered to withdraw. Rifleman Thaman then again crossed the skyline alone, firing burst upon burst of tommy gun fire until his ammunitition ran out. Having thrown two grenades he rejoined his section, collected two more grenades and crossing the skyline for the third time hurled them at the remaining Germans.


This diversion enabled both rear sections to withdraw. Meanwhile the leading section was still on the Summit, so Thaman seized a Bren gun, ran yet again to the skyline, emptied two magazines into the enemy position and then with the remaining section well on its way to safety turned to follow them, and at that very moment spun and fell with a bullet through his throat.




Corporal Naik Gian Singh

4th Battalion, 15th Punjab Regiment, British Indian Army

2 March 1945


On 2 March 1945 on the road between Kamye and Myingyan, Burma (now Myanmar), where the Japanese were strongly positioned, Naik Gian Singh who was in charge of the leading section of his platoon, went on alone firing his tommy gun, and rushed the enemy foxholes. In spite of being wounded in the arm he went on, hurling grenades. He attacked and killed the crew of a cleverly concealed anti-tank gun, and then led his men down a lane clearing all enemy positions. He went on leading his section until the action had been satisfactorily completed



Sergeant Ernest Alvia “Smokey” Smith

The Seaforth Highlanders of Canada

Italy, 21-22 October 1944


In Italy on the night of 21st–22nd;October 1944, a Canadian Infantry Brigade was ordered to establish a bridgehead across the Savio River. The Seaforth Highlanders of Canada were selected as the spearhead of the attack, and in weather most unfavourable to the operation they crossed the river and captured their objective in spite of strong opposition from the enemy.


Torrential rain had caused the Savio River to rise six feet in five hours, and as the soft vertical banks made it impossible to bridge the river no tanks or anti-tank guns could be taken across the raging stream to the support of the rifle companies.


As the right forward company was consolidating its objective it was suddenly counter-attacked by a troop of three Mark V Panther tanks supported by two self-propelled guns and about thirty infantry and the situation appeared hopeless.


Under heavy fire from the approaching enemy tanks, Private Smith, showing great initiative and inspiring leadership, led his P.I.A.T. Group of two men across an open field to a position from which the P.I.A.T. could best be employed. Leaving one man on the weapon, Private Smith crossed the road with a Private James Pennant and obtained another P.I.A.T. Almost immediately an enemy tank came down the road firing its machine-guns along the line of the ditches. Private Smith's comrade, Private Tennant was wounded. At a range thirty feet and having to expose himself to the full view of the enemy, Private Smith fired the P.I.A.T. and hit the tank, putting it out of action. Ten German infantry immediately jumped off the back of the tank and charged him with Messerschmidt and grenades. Without hesitation Private Smith moved out on the road and with his Tommy gun at point-blank range, killed four Germans and drove the remainder back. Almost immediately another tank opened fire and more enemy infantry closed in on Smith's position. Obtaining some abandoned Tommy gun magazines from a ditch, he steadfastly held his position, protecting Private Tennant and fighting the enemy with his Tommy gun until they finally gave up and withdrew in disorder.


One tank and both self-propelled guns had been destroyed by this time, but yet another tank swept the area with fire from a longer range. Private Smith, still showing utter contempt for enemy fire, helped his wounded friend to cover and obtained medical aid for him behind a nearby building. He then returned to his position beside the road to await the possibility of a further enemy attack.


No further immediate attack developed, and as a result the battalion was able to consolidate the bridgehead position so vital to the success of the whole operation, which led to the capture of San Giorgio Di Cesena and a further advance to the Ronco River.


Thus, by the dogged determination, outstanding devotion to duty and superb gallantry of this private soldier, his comrades were so inspired that the bridgehead was held firm against all enemy attacks, pending the arrival of tanks and anti-tank guns some hours later.



Private Richard Burton

1st Battalion, The Duke of Wellington’s Regiment

Italy, 8 October 1944


In Italy on 8th of October, 1944, two companies of the Duke of Wellington’s Regiment moved forward to take a strongly held feature 760 metres high.  The capture of this feature was vital at this stage of the operation, as it dominated all the ground on the main axis of advance.  The assaulting troops made good progress to within twenty yards of the crest, when they came under withering fire from Spandaus on the crest.  Private Burton rushed forward and engaging the first Spandau’s position with his Tommy-gun, killed the crew of three.



When the assault was again held up by murderous fire from more machine guns, Private Burton, again showing complete disregard for his own safety, dashed forward toward the first machine-gun, using his Tommy-gun until his ammunition was exhausted.  He then picked up a Bren gun and, firing from the hip, succeeded in killing or wounding the crews of the two machine-guns.  Thanks to his outstanding courage the Company was then able to consolidate on the forward slope of the feature.  Private Burton’s magnificent gallantry and total disregard of his own safety during many hours of fierce fighting in mud and continuous rain were an inspiration to all his comrades.

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