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How many USGI M3A1 Grease Guns are on the registry?


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#21 NFA amnesty

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Posted 14 December 2018 - 12:42 AM

I read that they did not make spare parts when they first shipped out M3 grease guns as it was considered a throw away weapon.  Unfortunately the bolt retracting handle would break off because the metal was not hardened.  There was a shortage of grease guns and demand outpaced supply so a fix was needed to keep them in the field.  I believe the M3 above was an attempt to keep the weapon in the field and still function.  Not sure if that was sanctioned Army wide, division, brigade, battalion, company level, or one of a kind, but folks were resourceful back then and came up with some ingenious methods to keep equipment running.   Here is something I just found doing a quick search:

 

"The solution was straightforward and simple: ordnance company personnel started by removing what was left of the retracting handle assembly from each damaged weapon, then used an end mill to cut a seven-inch long slot into the right hand side of the receiver at the 2 o’clock position running from just behind the weapon’s ejection port. This accommodated a crudely hewn steel bolt handle that inserted through an enlarged opening at the forward end of the slot and entered a hole drilled into the back end of the bolt assembly. It was not a pretty repair, but it worked.

A few archival photographs of men from General George Patton’s Third Army taken around the time of the Battle of the Bulge show Grease Guns repaired in this manner. In addition to that, the collection of Musée National d'Histoire Militaire (the National Military History Museum) in Diekirch, Luxembourg has in its collection five M3s that have received this field modification. Considering the fact that the Third Army operated in Luxembourg during and after the Battle of the Bulge, it looks like this field modification may have been confined to the ranks of that specific unit. Interestingly, a product improvement was already in development back in the USA that would make this design shortcoming superfluous."


Edited by NFA amnesty, 14 December 2018 - 01:00 AM.

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#22 Got Uzi

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Posted 14 December 2018 - 04:35 AM

There are several photographs of this type of modification being fielded in Europe during WWII. There were a couple different ways it was done but this is the most common. A thread here on the board showed a gun found in Italy I believe, that had a similar type of modification but a little less refined.
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#23 johnsonlmg41

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Posted 14 December 2018 - 08:07 AM

If you could come up with a milling machine, a lathe, etc.  and assortment of end mills in the field, you could likely weld up broken cocking handle.  I'd guess someone in allied forces had a better idea (probably British) and made it into a .45 cal sten.    Of course there would be copies done here in the states in the 60's and 70's when the guns were nearly worthless.   Buy the gun, not the story.  Personally for me the gun would suffer a large deduct in price even though it's a great functional add to the obvious weak spot in the gun.   The  retracting handle is another classic example of why the US was always behind in small arms development and why German guns were always ahead and highly sought after. 


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#24 M17ap

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Posted 14 December 2018 - 09:02 AM

During WWII GI’s had rolling machine shops on wheels using the 2 ton trucks. Ordnance people repaired all kinds of weapons. Rifles,
Machine guns , subguns, mortars , bazookas etc. They could weld , machine , or modify any weapons as needed.
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#25 Annihilator

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Posted 15 December 2018 - 04:05 AM

You can find those modified grease guns in France Belgium and Luxembourg. Those were most probably modified in England before dropped to European resistance groups because the cocking mechanism was to prone to breakage.

 

I have three friends, inn France Belgium and Luxembourg who own this type of grease guns, all came from the resistance

 

Here is a picture showing two French resistance members holding that type of grease guns

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#26 NFA amnesty

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Posted 26 January 2019 - 10:02 PM

i think its a fair price....

 

a rare gun...id have it tweaked since its refinished anyways...$1k and it would be a beauty queen....and no one would know unless they looked down the inside of the tube....my mp40 welds are flawless...the finish will most likely be cerakote to match....but it might be already anyways

 

congrats....if i had the spare $ id consider it

 

maker on the form 4 is guide lamp?  (hope you checked)

Hey Huggy, sorry missed that part of your post, yes it has Guide Lamp listed as the maker.

 

However my M16A1 GM Hydramatic Re-Weld has GM Hydramatic listed as the maker on the Form 4, so you just never know.


Edited by NFA amnesty, 27 January 2019 - 12:28 AM.

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#27 Got Uzi

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Posted 26 January 2019 - 11:39 PM

My Form 4 says US Contract Source for manufacture. Anyone seen that one??
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#28 NFA amnesty

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Posted 27 January 2019 - 10:40 PM

My Form 4 says US Contract Source for manufacture. Anyone seen that one??

No, but kind of cool.


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#29 JJX

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Posted 27 January 2019 - 11:12 PM

My Form 4 says US Contract Source for manufacture. Anyone seen that one??


Mine simply says US.
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#30 DZelenka

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Posted 28 January 2019 - 11:16 AM

I would love to have a GI conversion like that in my M3 collection.

You have a Dremel. LOL


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#31 Got Uzi

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Posted 28 January 2019 - 12:42 PM

You funny.....
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#32 michaelkih

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Posted 18 February 2019 - 04:22 AM

My form says Ithaca
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