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#114895 Individual Reputation Point System On Machinegunboards.com

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

All,

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.

Thanks!

David Albert
dalbert@sturmgewehr.com
  • 10


#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:

 

http://www.sturmgewe...nstructions.pdf

 

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.

 

Thanks!

 

David Albert

dalbert@sturmgewehr.com


  • 8


#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:

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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:

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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:

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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:

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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:

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

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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?

Bob
  • 7


#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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XXX MAGAZINES

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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BLANK XX MAGAZINES

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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UNIQUE MAGAZINE FEATURES

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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THE OTHER GUYS...

BSA

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:

"ALSO FOR U.S. MODEL OF 1928 A1


WIND TO 9 CLICKS"



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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
  • 6


#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


All,

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:

http://www.machinegu...showtopic=12358


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:

Copy%20of%20USPatent_1923_Catalog-1.JPG
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:

4thEdRepro.JPG

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

4thEdReproFrontierMark.JPG
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:

Riling1929Cat.JPG
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:

1929-Frontier-1.JPG

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

1929-Frontier-2.JPG
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.

Thompson%20Directions%20Compar%20copy.JP
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)

http://www.sturmgewe...d_Catalog-2.jpg

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)

http://www.sturmgewe...-Original_2.jpg

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.

http://www.sturmgewe...n1940Repro2.jpg

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)

http://www.sturmgewe...gs/GPManual.JPG

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)

http://www.sturmgewe...al_DiagOrig.JPG

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

http://www.sturmgewe...l_DiagRepro.JPG

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.

ReproTM9_1215.jpg

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)

Ejectors1.jpg

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.

http://www.sturmgewe...uatorSwede1.jpg

http://www.sturmgewe...uatorSwede2.JPG

http://www.sturmgewe...uatorSwede3.jpg

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)

1921ActuatorRepro_Web.JPG

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:
LymanL2.JPG

Reproduction "Lyman" is not checkered:
FakeLyman3.jpg

Original Lyman marking:
LymanL.JPG

Another Original Lyman marking:
LymanLMiddlefield_Web.JPG
Photo courtesy TD

Reproduction Lyman marking:
FakeLyman1.jpg

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.
LymanL3.jpg

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.
LymanL4.jpg

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
line.
FakeLyman2.jpg

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.

SlingsFront_Web.JPG
SlingsBack_Web1.JPG
SlingClose_Web.JPG
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.

IMA_Cover-1.JPG
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."
"W.M.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)
HT&C
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.
W.M.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.)
crawfordbagback_web.JPG
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)

http://wing.chez-ali..._equipment.html

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.

Canvas_Web.JPG
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.

ReproLInside.jpg
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.

Parts_Boxes-2_Web.JPG

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

Parts_Boxes_web.JPG

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.

MSPK%20-%20Original%20copy.JPG
MSPK%20Reproduction%20copy.JPG

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.

ReproCrosby.JPG
David Albert Collection

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

http://www.sturmgewe...sbyMarking1.JPG

http://www.sturmgewe...sbyMarking2.JPG

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:
Orgnickel1.jpg
Photo courtesy gijive
Orgnickel2.jpg
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.
Orgnickel3.jpg
Photo courtesy gijive

Some other comparison photos:
Orgnickel4.jpg
Photo courtesy gijive
Orgnickel5.jpg
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:

Label.JPG

A reproduction Police Thompson case by Robert Necessary:
caselower_web.JPG

More cases by Robert Necessary can be viewed at the following link: (Select "Slide Show" in upper right hand corner)
http://s452.photobuc...48/rat-tat-tat/

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


  • 6


#23272 Thompson FAQ: Check Here First

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

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.

IMG_3889_web.JPG
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.

GENERAL FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

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 $25,000* and up.



M21m28m1.jpg
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 $18,000 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 $11,000 to as high as $15,000.

randy_lish.jpg
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) 50 round drum dump 10MEG Quicktime movie

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" 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.

drum02.jpg
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. "Gutterratt" on this board makes and sells a Thompson drum greasing tool. Here is a link to the instructions, which show what it looks like. You will need your own c-clamp and grease gun to go along with the kit, which may be purchased by contacting Gutterratt through the e-mail function on this website, or at his direct e-mail as follows: (bobmassing@yahoo.com) The price is $75 shipped. He will donate $5 of each greasing tool sale to this website.

"Gutterratt" Drum Greaser Instructions

Here is a link to Gutterratt's original post about the drum greaser for more information:

http://www.machinegu...showtopic=10566

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
CDNN
TommyGunner
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.

projectx.jpg
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.

Merle F. Bitikofer
tsmgNOSPAMdrumdr@msn.com **Remove NO SPAM
224 N. W. Woods Ln.
Dallas, Or 97338
----------------------
Merle can replace springs in both 50 and 100 round magazines, and specializes in tweaking West Hurley 100 round "C" drums.

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.

Does anyone make high quality reproductions of Thompson hard cases, specifically for the fully automatic guns?
Yes, there are at least 3 different current manufacturers of various hard cases, two of whom sell directly to the public. Update, 10/15/11: Both manufacurers who sell to the public are not currently producing Thompson cases. Both may begin producing them again, but right now, there are no new cases available.

Robert Necessary has manufactured handcrafted cases for the Thompson since the 1970's. His models include reproductions of the FBI, Police, Alabama, and Bank Guard Thompson cases. Bob can be reached at bob"NOSPAM"@rat-tat-tat.com for details and prices.

indianacaseinside.jpg
Reproduction Indiana style hard case by Robert Necessry

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.

FoxM1Case.jpg
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.

woods.jpg
Jacobean and linseed oil refinishing

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.

newstain01.jpg
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?
Many of these abbrevitions and their meanings are better definied in Machine Gun Buyers Guide available at the end of this FAQ. But 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
FA= full automatic
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


FULL AUTOMATIC THOMPSON FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

thompson42.jpg
<span style='font-size:8pt;line-height:100%'>Little else rivals the thrill of a Thompson</span>

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://www.recguns.c...urces/IIF1.html
(closer to the bottom of the page)

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 90 days.

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. Triple Break Products Dot 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. See also http://home.comcast....ges/BATFDum.htm

"Reconbob" on this board manufactures 80% complete Thompson display receivers of excellent quality. 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 insure 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 $2000) 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 are 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:
http://www.machinegu...showtopic=19790

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.

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?
The set of 3 charts at the following URL shows who manufactured most WWII parts.
http://thetca.net/Do... markings.pdf

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...

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

Handy chart showing shipping options via FedEx - http://www.nraba.org...ceMatrix(2).pdf

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.

SEMI AUTOMATIC THOMPSON FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

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. The form F-1 will require that you obtain signature of your Chief Law Enforcement Officer. 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 90 days. 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.

27standsm.jpg
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 maufactured 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.

Lyman.jpg
Lyman Adjustable Rear Sight
LymanTop.jpg
Lyman Adjustable Rear Sight Mounted on West Hurley Model 1928 Thompson
WHSight.jpg
West Hurley Adjustable Rear Sight
Above Images Courtesy The1930sRust
==============================================

BOOKS ON THE THOMPSON

ThompsonBooks_Web.JPG

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 very expensive to buy. Prices are currently $350-$400 to acquire this book. No ISBN noted, however there is a 1986 38-page supplement still currently available 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 an even more thorough book, American Thunder II.

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 author. 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 followingwebsite. 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. Currently available at the followingwebsite. 536 pages. You must have this one if you have any interest in military Thompsons. Enough said.

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. Just came out 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.

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.

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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.

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Book reviews and pictures above by David Albert


  • 5


#85743 Thompson Canvas Items

Posted by dalbert on 27 December 2008 - 10:25 PM

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

Throughout the service life of the Thompson Submachine Gun, a variety of canvas utility
items supported the weapon, including some pictured in the WWII web gear setup below.  

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TAS1921AC Collection

Thompson canvas items are very collectible, and almost every collector has a piece or two to accompany their Thompson.  Many canvas items exist that I want to document here, and while this initial post has significant content, there are many other existing canvas items, produced by different manufacturers that I want to add to this online reference guide.  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.  I would like this guide to be a collaborative effort of the Thompson collector community, and for it to serve as sort of a "virtual gun show" of Thompson canvas items.  If you have any items with unique variations or markings, please submit them, as I'm certain they will gain interest here.

Chronology of Updates to This Pinned Post
12/27/08:  This is a work in progress.  I'm literally overwhelmed with the number of photos that have been sent by board members for this new pinned post.  (SIG, GIJive, and Arch Stanton - I'm not done with all your pictures yet, so if you don't see them, I'll get them uploaded as soon as I can...Thanks for your participation!)  I'm posting it now, even though all the new content is not yet posted, so that everyone can see the progress.
12/28/08-12/30/08: Continuing to organize, crop, size, upload, and post the significant number of canvas item images and details that have been sent to me.  Many thanks to all who have contributed so far.  I still have a bunch of items to post.
1/1/09: Posted several more items that were submitted by board members, and still have more to post ASAP...
1/17/09: Added HT&C reproduction 503rd P.I.R. Rigger pouch, and Rusco Model of 1921A Thompson Case with Buttstock Pouch.
1/18/09: Added American Fabrics Co. 1943 Magazine Bag.
1/27/09: Added canvas reproduction item identification verbiage.
2/1/09: Added more information about reproduction canvas items.
2/7/09: Added more verbiage regarding reproduction items.
2/10/09: Modified reproduction manufacturer information, and added a new vendor.
2/21/09: Added info about B.B., Inc. 5-Cell 1943 dated XX Magazine Pouch., also added Burkart 1942 Magazine Bag and Mills C-Drum Pouch.
2/22/09: Added Pacific Canvas & Leather to list of reproduction Thompson item manufacturers, added one reproduction maker's mark, and also G.B. Mfg. Co., Inc. 1943 Magazine Bag information.
3/1/09: Added Epic Militaria to the list of reproduction Thompson item manufacturers, added one reproduction maker's mark
3/7/09: Added Royal Thai Navy L-Drum Pouch
4/4/09: Added information about additional Magazine Bag manufacturers
4/11/09: Finally have time to post several new items that Robert McGhee submitted to me 5 weeks ago, also posted information on additional 5-Cell WWII XX Magazine Pouch manufacturer
4/18/09 - 4/19/09: Added 2 more reproduction manufacturers/retailers, added pictures of 3 IMA reproduction items
5/19/09: Posted info about Avery 1943 Magazine Bag
5/23/09: Added Reproduction maker's mark (WPG Canvas Co.)
6/1/09: Posted information about G.B. Manufacturing 1942 Thompson Magazine Bag
7/3/09: Added statement about reproduction canvas mag pouches causing magazines to rapidly rust when stored within
7/14/09:  Added info about Johansen 1942 Thompson Magazine Bag
10/17/09: Added Early WWII Unmarked L-Drum Pouch, example of Crawford Mfg. Co., Inc. WWII marking, and picture of Hoosier 1942 Magazine Bag
11/1/09: Added photo of G.B. Manufacturing Co., Inc. 1942 Magazine Bag
11/8/09: Added information about Independent Awnings 1942 Thompson Magazine Bag, and Case, Ammunition, 7052438
12/20/09: Added information regarding John B. Rogers Producing Co. 1943 Thompson Magazine Bag
12/21/09: Added photos of Boyt 1942 Magazine Bag, John B. Rogers Producing Co. 1943 Magazine Bag, and R.M. Co. 1942, USMC Marked L-Drum Pouch
12/27/09: Added Unmarked 4-Cell XX Magazine pouch
1/3/10: Added warning about maker marking and other military ink stamps offered on Ebay
1/10/10: Added photo of Case, Ammunition, 7052438 and Independent Awnings 1942 Magazine Bag
1/30/10: Added info regarding HT&C 1942 marked reproduction L-Drum pouch
2/21/10: Added WWII Rusco L-Drum Pouch with Strap
7/3/10: Added RMT Co. 1942 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouch
8/21/10: Added 2 Mills Web Belts with different stampings
1/21/11: Added BB Inc. 1943 5-Cell Magazine Pouch
8/26/11: Added photo of G.B. Manufacturing Co., Inc. 1943 Magazine Bag
6/8/12: Added photo of J.S. & S. Co. 5-Cell Magazine Pouch

A Few Words About Reproduction Canvas Items:

1/03/10 - Please note! If you are considering the purchase of a WWII era "original" article of web gear, including Thompson items, 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.

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
HT&C (In their eBay store)
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)
HT&C
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.
W.M.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.)
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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)

http://wing.chez-ali..._equipment.html

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

More information about reproduction Thompson accessories can be seen at the following pinned post:

http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=9657

Thompson Canvas Items

Early Mills Canvas Items

Thompson Buttstock Pouch:

The Feb. 1921 dated, Mills manufactured Thompson buttstock pouch is a separate web accessory manufactured in the very early days of the Thompson.  It is undoubtedly the rarest Thompson canvas item in existence, and only one example is known to exist.

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Mike Sig Collection

Mills Feb. 1921 L-Drum Pouch:
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Marking on Feb 1921 Mills L-Drum Pouch:

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Above Images Mike Sig Collection

Undated Mills L-Drum Pouch:

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Mike Sig Collection

Mills 4-Cell XX Mag Pouch:

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Mike Sig Collection

Mills 2-Cell Shot Magazine Pouch

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Mike Sig Collection

Mills Web Belts (Used with Thompson Items Above):

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Above Images Robert McGhee Collection

This Mills Web Belt has a "FEB. 1921" marking on it.

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Above Images Bill Larson Collection

Mills C-Drum Pouch:

This Mills C-Drum pouch utilizes a carrying strap that pre-dates the TSMG.  Mills made canvas items for many applications.

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Above Images Ron and Kelly Brock Collection

Mills Canvas Carrying Case for Model of 1921A Thompson (WITHOUT Attached Buttstock Pouch):

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Mike Sig Collection

Mills and Rusco Spare Parts Bag:

If you are contemplating purchasing a Mills marked spare parts bag, please remain extremely cautious as to its provenance. Some recollections have been discussed on this board of an individual in Pennsylvania who reproduced a Mills spare parts bag in the past that looked very authentic.  The Mills parts bag pictured here is most likely original, and there are no known reproductions of the RUSCO spare parts bag.  If anyone has a picture of a known reproduction Mills spare parts bag, I would like to feature it here.

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Above Images Brian Marvin Collection

Early Rusco Canvas Items
(Will also include some advertising content in this section)

Rusco L-Drum Pouch:

This is an early Rusco L-Drum pouch, and the "RUSCO" marking can be seen faintly on the inside flap.  It has a belt loop on the back, in addition to a carrying strap.

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Above Images GIJive Collection

Rusco C-Drum Pouch:

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The Rusco markings can be found inside the C-Drum flap, and also on the carrying strap, as seen in the picture below.

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Above Images Mike Sig Collection

Unmarked Rusco? Commercial 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouch:

This is a commercial type tan canvas XX magazine pouch.  Speculation on the board several years ago concluded these were probably made by RUSCO as opposed to Mills, since the early Mills canvas items all seem to be  
marked.

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Above Images GIJive Collection

Rusco Model of 1921A Thompson Case with Buttstock Pouch:

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full auto 45 Collection

Unmarked Rusco? Model of 1921A Thompson Case with Buttstock Pouch:

This carrying case is unmarked, but is possibly of Rusco manufacture.

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GIJive Collection

Web Slings

(Comparison of 3 types of original slings to be added ASAP)

The pictures below illustrate differences between original and reproduction slings.  Some reproduction slings exist that are very convincing at a glance, sold by several vendors.  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.

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Above Images Bridgeport28A1 Collection

U.S. WWII Era Canvas Items and Their Manufacturers:

Many different manufacturers contributed to demand for war products, including canvas items to support the Thompson Submachine Gun in the field during WWII.  I want to document as many manufacturers as possible in this section.  I also want to document reproductions.  An industry has developed around the very popular WWII reenacting hobby, and some manufacturers produce items that are very difficult to distinguish from originals.

4-Cell XX Mag Pouches

Unmarked 4-Cell XX Magazine Pouch:

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Above Images Courtesy billie32

5-Cell XX Mag Pouches

So far, 6 different original manufacturers of WWII 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouches have been identified.  The 5-cell pouch is apparently the most common Thompson canvas item.

American Leather Products Co. 1942 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouch:

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Above Images Bridgeport28A1 Collection

B.B., Inc. 1943 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouch:

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Above Images John Ferguson Collection

Boyt 1943 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouch:

This pouch is maker marked on the reverse side, along with the "US" marking.  It does not feature the maker mark inside the belt loop.

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Above Images David Albert Collection

General Shoe Corp. 1943 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouch:

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Above Images GIJive Collection

Hoosier T. & C.G. Co. 1942 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouch:

This Hoosier T.& C.G. Co. 1942 pouch is a good example of variations in material color that are often encountered on WWII canvas items, and are particularly apparent on many Thompson 5-Cell XX magazine pouches.  This pouch appears to be 2-tone in color.

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Above Images GIJive Collection

J.S. & S. Co. 1943 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouch:

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Above Images Z3BigDaddy Collection

R.M.T. Co. 1942 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouch:

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Above Images James M Collection

RUSCO WWII 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouch:

RUSCO produced a 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouch that was marked "U.S." on the middle magazine flap, and marked "RUSCO" inside the left hand magazine flap.  It is unmarked on the back of the pouch.  This pouch is less frequently encountered than most.

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Above Images Robert McGhee Collection

Unmarked WWII 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouch:

It has been observed that many of these unmarked pouches originated as accessories included with Russian Lend-Lease parts kits, which could explain why they are unmarked.

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Above Images GIJive Collection

Comparison of Reising 5-Cell, 20-round Magazine Pouch to Thompson 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouch:

A 5-cell, USMC marked Reising 20-round magazine pouch was issued that, at a glance, appears very similar to a Thompson 5-cell XX magazine pouch. Reising magazines fit in Thompson pouches, however the flaps will not close. Thompson XX magazines will fit in Reising magazine pouches.  All examples observed of Reising 5-cell, USMC marked magazine pouches bear the date of 1942.  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

(If you have any interest in the Reising Submachine Gun, please visit the Reising FAQ page on this website at the link below:
Machinegunboards.com Reising SMG FAQ Page

Reproduction IMA 5-Cell XX Magazine Pouch:

This is a reproduction item currently sold by International Military Antiques. (IMA)  The snaps are extremely difficult to use, and the quality is not as good as an original.

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Above Images David Albert Collection

3-Cell XXX Mag Pouches

U.S.M.C. Marked, R.M. Co. 1944 3-Cell XXX Magazine Pouch:

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Above Images Bridgeport28A1 Collection

Reproduction IMA 3-Cell XXX Magazine Pouch:

This is a reproduction item currently sold by International Military Antiques. (IMA)  The snaps are extremely difficult to use, and the quality is not as good as an original.  The stamping has a slightly different look than originals with the same markings.

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Above Images David Albert Collection

Reproduction Medcorp Saddlery Co. 3-Cell XXX Magazine Pouch:

This is a reproduction item that was previously sold by The Sportsman's Guide.  

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Above Images Mike Hammer Collection

(More content to be added)

Magazine Bags

American Fabrics Co. 1943 Magazine Bag:

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Avery 1943 Magazine Bag:

Two Thompson Magazine Bags manufactured by Avery with 1943 dates have been observed, and a picture will be posted ASAP.

Boyt 1942 Magazine Bag:

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Boyt 1943 Magazine Bag:

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Above Images Mike Hammer Collection

Burkart 1942 Magazine Bag:

Burkart Manufacturing Co. was apparently a small manufacturer in St. Louis, MO that made automobile seat cushioning, and was acquired by Textron in 1953.  The magazine bag of their manufacture pictured below is in unissued condition.

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Above Images David Albert Collection

G.B. Mfg. Co., Inc. 1942 Magazine Bag:

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Above Images David Albert Collection

G.B. Mfg. Co., Inc. 1943 Magazine Bag:

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Above Images ThompsonSavage Collection

H & T Co. 1942 Magazine Bag:

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Above Images Robert McGhee Collection

Hoosier 1942 Magazine Bag:

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Above Images Courtesy Roscoe Turner

Independent Awnings 1942 Magazine Bag:

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Johansen 1942 Magazine Bag:

A Thompson Magazine Bag manufactured by Johansen with a 1942 date has been observed, and a picture will be posted ASAP.  

John B. Rogers Producing Co. 1943 Magazine Bag:

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J.Q.M.D. 1942 Magazine Bag:

A Thompson Magazine Bag manufactured by J.Q.M.D. with a 1942 date has been observed, and a picture will be posted ASAP.  This magazine bag apparently holds 6 XXX magazines, while most others hold 8.

W. L. Dumas Mfg. Co. 1943 Magazine Bag:

A Thompson Magazine Bag manufactured by W. L. Dumas Mfg. Co.  with a 1943 date has been observed, and a picture will be posted ASAP.

Case, Cal. .45 Sub M.G. Clip D90242:

I'm putting this up because it was more than likely used for Thompson magazines, but was probably produced for the M3 Submachine Gun.  Any comments regarding origin and use are appreciated.

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Above Images David Albert Collection

Case, Ammunition, 7052438:

This is another item that was designated for the M3 Greasegun, but was more than likely also used for Thompson magazines.

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Image credit to www.hayesotoupalik.com

Canvas Parts Bags

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TAS1921AC Collection

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Above Images David Albert Collection (Former)

Carrying Cases and Covers

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Above Images Bridgeport28A1 Collection

Pictured below is a cover (Ordnance Number D50268) for the TSMG, which was used in Half Track vehicles.

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Above Images Bridgeport28A1 Collection

L-Drum Pouches

Reproduction and Original L-Drum Pouch Comparison:

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Bridgeport28A1 Collection

Avery 1942 L-Drum Pouch with Strap:

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Above Images TAS1921AC Collection

Boyle L-Drum Pouch with Strap:

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Above Images GIJive Collection

G.B. Manufacturing Co. Inc. 1942 L-Drum Pouch with Strap:

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Above Images David Albert Collection

Reproduction HT&C 1942, L-Drum Pouch with Strap:

A reproduction Thompson L-Drum pouch has been introduced recently (January 2010) that is marked HT&C 1942.  A picture will be posted ASAP.

R.M. Co. 1942, USMC Marked L-Drum Pouch with Strap:

This is a scarce, original "USMC" marked L-drum pouch made by R.M. Co. in 1942.

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Rusco L-Drum Pouch with Strap:

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Above Images Roscoe Turner Collection

Early WWII, Unmarked L-Drum Belt Pouch (No Strap):

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Rigger Thompson Pouches

HT&C Reproduction 503rd P.I.R. Rigger 5-Cell XXX Magazine Pouch:

Members of the U.S. 503rd Parachute Infantry Regiment in WWII apparently field designed and produced a pouch to hold 5 Thompson XXX magazines together.  These pouches hold the magazines facing forward, instead of sideways, like most other pouches.  The pouch fits on a web belt, and two of these on a belt provided the paratrooper with 300 rounds at quick service.  HT&C is a reproduction manufacturer in the United Kingdom that produces many reproduction WWII canvas products.  All their products are marked, and easy to identify with their distinctive "HT&C" marking.  This reproduction "Rigger" pouch is marked "HT&C 1944," which can be seen in the pictures below.

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Above Images David Albert Collection

British Thompson Canvas Items:

Home Guard Pouches

(Content to be added)

British Pattern 37 XXX Thompson Magazine Pouch:

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Above Images Joe Gould Collection

L-Drum Pouches

British Manufactured B. H. & G. 1944 L-Drum Pouch with Carrying Strap:

B H & G (Barrow, Hepburn & Gale) are well-known manufacturers of canvas and leather items for the British military.  (Many thanks to Mk VII for this information)

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Above Images Mike Hammer Collection

Action Covers

Original Action Covers for the M1928A1 and M1 Thompsons can be found for sale, and most are very stiff and brittle.  

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Above Images Bridgeport28A1 Collection

I.M.A. markets a reproduction action cover that is marked "A.V.S. 1943," of which the collector should remain aware.  It is pictured below.

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Above Images David Albert Collection

British Snow Camouflage Bags and Markings

According to an article by Richard Karlsson in the August 2000 TCA Newslettter, there were at least 3 manufacturers of British Snow Camouflage Bags for the Thompson, which were intended for use in a planned invasion of Norway.  Since the Germans surrended prior to the planned invasion, the cases were never issued.  The cases feature 2 tie down points for use with or without the buttstock attached.  Many thanks to full auto 45 for forwarding the information, and the first set of images below.

The Northern Proofing Co was based in Huddersfield, England. They also made Bergen rucksacks. (Information courtesy Mk VII)

Northern Proofing Co. Ltd. 1944 Snow Camouflage Bag:

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Above Images full auto 45 Collection

H. & S. 1944 Snow Camouflage Bag:

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Other Thompson Canvas Items:

Royal Thai Navy L-Drum Pouch:

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Above Images David Albert Collection

Berrien County 6-Cell XXX Mag Pouch:

The Berrien County Michigan Sheriff's Department is the owner of both the Colt Thompsons documented to have been used in the St. Valentine's Day Massacre in Chicago in 1929. (Serial numbers 2347 and 7580)  The department also owns an M1 Thompson.  This unique carrying case was made by the seamstress who repairs uniforms, and was fashioned out of old Berrien County uniform jacket material.  It holds 6 XXX Thompson magazines, and is a very comfortable and efficient carrying pouch.

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Berrien County Michigan Sheriff's Department Collection, Photos by David Albert

These materials are protected by copyright and other intellectual property laws.
Copyright 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011 © David Albert
  • 4


#176723 1921/1928 on Gunbroker

Posted by Sandman1957 on 09 March 2017 - 08:34 AM

Buzz,

  I agree and disagree with your arguments.  I agree that guns with documented history are more valuable than ones that do not.  Colt Chopper's gun is the example there.  I disagree that "wartime" production adds value over documented use.  Here I am speaking specifically to Colt Thompsons,  These were designed at the end of WWI but did not get into circulation until the early to mid 20's.  The Marines had them before WWII; in Haiti, Nicaragua and China.  They killed people with them in all three places.  Read up on some of the China Marine history and mystique.  Bill Lee and others including Chesty Puller, Red Mike Edson, and others carried Thompsons and 1918 BARs in those conflicts and put them to good use.  Bill Lee himself was awarded 3 Navy Crosses.  

 

   These guns were "aquired" during "peacetime" and don't fit your "wartime production" standard.  However these guns stayed with the Marines as they were deployed around the world and were used during WWII.  Aug 1942 had Colt Thompson's on Guadalcanal with the 1st Marine Division and the Marine Raiders.  Colt Thompson's were also in China.      Bill Lee buried the blish locks on their Thompsons and bent the barrels on all the 1918 BARs when they were ordered to surrender by the Ambassador to China.  The Marines were taken prisoner and spent the ENTIRE War as Japanese prisoners.  From Dec 8th (7th) on the US side of the Date / Time difference.

   For me, because of my personal relationship to Bill Lee, if I could get a Nicaraguan SN Colt Thompson that would be the pinnacle for me.  I would gladly trade my best Colt Thompson for a well worn, beat up Nicaraguan used gun.  Plus pay additional money...  Those guns are out there, I just don't know who has them or I would have already asked for first refusal when they move.

 

   Guys that grew up watching John Wayne, Vic Morrow, Audie Murphy carry the '28 like the '28.  More folks will like the M1s now that Band of Brothers, Saving Private Ryan have rightfully so, featured them as well.  

 

    However the "premium" on the additional history for a specific SN will always make that SN more attractive to "some".  To imply that Colts didn't kill Japs and Germans in WWII is not correct.  They did, but not in as great of numbers.  The Marine Raiders had Springfields and Enfields on Henderson Ridge and Colt Thompsons.  They had few if any Garands.  

 

    Bottom line.  The fit of the Colt is premium.  It was the "first to fight".  The fact that it was not wartime production (to me) is not even a reference point.  The M4's and M16A2's that we killed all kinds of folks in Iraq and Afghanistan in 2001 and 2003 were not "wartime" production.  But they were Colts and when War broke out, they were put to good use.  (Don't waste your time arguing politics over fighting.  We in the military don't pick when and where we fight.  However when we are there, and told to do so, its game on).  The weapons we have been issued regardless of when they were manufactured are the ones that then have "documented" history.

 

   The best points are, we all like different things for different reasons.  We all have different reference points and we are all "right".  I don't have to like what you do and vice versa.  Just don't get overly confused on "wartime" production.  The guys the Marines killed with Colt Thompsons that do not fit your "wartime" production in Haiti, Nicaragua, China etc are dead dog dead and if you can document those SNs to the guns, I would pay an "additional premium" for them.  Certainly TO ME, a beat up, heavily used Marine Corp Thompson is far more valuable that Barney Fife's Thompson that sat in Mayberry and never fired a shot in anger.  (I made that up, don't look for the episode).

 

Happy Snaps for all to enjoy.  

 

Bill Lee holding my daughter Megan Lee in 1994.

Col Lee 1931 and Now With Megan Lee.jpg

 

China Marines 1939 -1941ish

China Marine TSMG.jpg

China marine TSMG 2.jpg

 

Both these guns may not have been "Wartime Production", but I would take them over an M1 or 1918A2 BAR any day

China Marine TSMG BAR.jpg

China Marine TSMG BAR 2.jpg

China Marines 1939.jpg

 

Bill Lee as a Marine Gunner in China 1939 - Dec 8th 1941 when taken as a POW for the entire war.

Col Lee in China.jpg

 

Soooo, who's right.  It doesn't matter.  Buy what you want.

 

 However if you run across a USMC Nicaraguan Thompson, call me first!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

   

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#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

www.smallarmsreview.com


  • 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!

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#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
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#114836 Semi-Auto Hard To Cock? Its Not Your Imagination...

Posted by reconbob on 22 March 2012 - 05:25 PM

The difficulty of cocking the semi-autos is a topic here now and then.
I have read that 27-29 lbs is considered to be the norm and actually measured
that here in the shop.
Lately though, I have worked on several guns that I could not cock in the
normal fashion - by pulling back the bolt, but would have to hold the cocking
handle against a workbench and push the rifle to cock the gun. This has
happened again so I figured I would measure the force required, because I
can handle 29 lbs, but not these recent rifles.
The bolt is relatively easy to cock for the beginning of rearward travel.
Then you hit a hard spot where the firing pin is caught by the sear and an
even harder spot where the bolt catch is activated.
The rifle I checked which is factory-new requires between 40-42.5 lbs, of
force to retract the bolt back far enough to cock the bolt to the full recoil
position which would cock the firing pin and activate the bolt hold open.
However, with the magazine in the gun the trip acting on the bolt catch
creates more friction and a force of between 50-55 lbs is needed to retract
the bolt far enough to activate the bolt catch.
With this amount of force required to operate the gun there are two problems
I can think of - 1) this amount of force required to cock the gun makes operating
the gun beyond the strength of many. I include myself here. If I was out shooting
I would not be able to cock the gun. 2) This cocking force invites unsafe handling
conditions as the user contorts himself and looks for mechanical aids to be able
to cock the gun.
I do not know why the cocking force has gone from the difficult-but-I-can-do-it
27-29 lbs. to the impossible-can't-do-it 50-55 lbs. But it is something to consider.
Perhaps this is a random thing?  For anyone buying one of these I would ask the
sales person to cock the gun for you.
  
Bob

Gun with 42.5 lbs drawing bolt to full cock:

Posted Image

This is the stack of weights needed to draw the bolt to full cock with an empty
magazine in the gun activating the bolt catch:

Posted Image
  • 4


#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.



Swiss-1_Web.JPG


Swiss-3_Web.JPG


Swiss-2_Web.JPG


Swiss-4_Web.JPG


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.


 


Aussie-1_Web2.JPG


Aussie-2_Web2.JPG


Aussie_Headstamps_Web2.JPG


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



CBC_1948-1.JPG

CBC_1948-2.JPG

CBC_1948-3.JPG


CBC_1948_Headstamp.JPG




Quality control markings:



CBC_1948-4.JPGCBC_1948-5.JPG

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.



Brazil-1_Web.JPG


Brazil-2_Web.JPG

Above Images Ron & Kelly Brock Collection



CBC Brazilian Thompson SMG Ammunition: 1974



CBC_1974-1.JPG

CBC_1974-2.JPG

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


  • 4


#82828 Machinegunboards.com TSMG Reference Thread Index

Posted by dalbert on 31 August 2008 - 01:42 PM

This thread has periodic technical issues. Over time, some of the links listed may stop working when you click on them. If you experience a dead link, you should cut and paste the link directly below this paragraph into your web browser, and then add the 4 or 5 digit individual topic number shown in the link code below the topic you want to see from the topic reference list below.

http://www.machinegu....php?showtopic=topic number here

The intent of this pinned thread is to create an index of the most informative posts regarding the Thompson Submachine Gun that have been generated on Machinegunboards.com. As time allows, I will add threads that are recommended to me, or that I consider valuable for specific information. If you would like a thread to be considered for listing here, please contact David Albert at dalbert@sturmgewehr.com. This will be another work in progress...Thanks to TD for the suggestion!

The list is organized as follows:

1. Historical Interest
2. Collector Interest
3. Technical Interest
4. Other Useful Thompson Informational Threads

Historical Interest

The Development Of The Thompson Sub Machinegun, by Theodore H. Eickhoff - This was supplied by "full auto 45," and is a text written by Theodore Eickhoff, an Auto-Ordnance engineer who made the Thompson Submachine Gun a reality.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=7304

Calvin Goddard, Law Enforcement Forensics, and the St. Valentine's Day Massacre Thompsons - This thread shows the TATA Display at the 2008 NRA Convention in Louisville, which was based on the work of Dr. Calvin Goddard, and his contributions to law enforcement forensics as a result of the St. Valentine's Day Massacre. Both SVDM Thompsons were featured in the display.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=9399
Another good thread on the SVDM Thompsons, written when "gijive" began working with Berrien County to learn more about the guns.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=7240
I have to throw this one in, also...
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=7060

British Sling Placement on Thompsons During WWII - Why did British Thompsons have slings attached differently? This thread answers that question.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=4320

The "Replica" Thread - This is the longest and most read thread in Machinegunboards.com history. Take a day off from work, read it, and formulate your opinion about the succession of the Thompson through the years...
http://www.machinegu...);">5769</span>

The American Thompson Association/Dallas Arms Collectors Association Thompson Display at the 2007 NRA Convention in St. Louis - If you'd like to see an incredible display featuring a range of Thompson guns and accessories, take a look at the pictures posted in this thread.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=8127

Collector Interest

Buying Your First Thompson? - See this Example of Why You Must be Careful, and Fully Informed - Here is a thread that discusses what was advertised as an original Bridgeport manufactured Thompson, but is actually a reweld made up of at least two different guns.  There is much technical expertise demonstrated, as well as collector information that all should read if they plan to purchase a Thompson. 

http://www.machinegu...showtopic=16079

 

Thompson Hard Cases - This thread is the work of Bill Menosky ("aut-ord-co"), who has done fantastic research on the history of Thompson hard cases.
http://www.machinegu...showtopic=11956

Home Guard Special Units Thompson Chests – This thread studies a scarce British WWII Thompson accessory, which was a wooden chest built specifically for a Thompson and accessories.
http://www.machinegu...showtopic=11386

Spare Parts Pouches - This thread discusses all types of Thompson spare parts pouches.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=7386

Rare Patent Date Magazine Markings - This is a discussion regarding a rare type of Thompson patent date magazine.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=9883

Highlighting Receiver Markings - This post has some suggestions regarding how to use various marking agents to highlight numbers and markings on Thompsons, drums, and magazines.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=5640

West Hurley Serial Numbers - If you want to know when your West HurleyThompson was manufactured, this post will refer you to the appropriate URL.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=5626

Vichy French Model of 1921 Thompson Manuals - Information on Vichy French Model of 1921 manuals that were printed under German occupation during WWII.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=5457

Model of 1928 Colt Thompson Pilot Length, Color, and Hole Placement - This thread details pilot lengths and other variations encountered on Model of 1928 Thompsons.
http://www.machinegu...showtopic=10106

Colt Thompson vs. Savage Thompson Vertical Grip Comparison - Check this thread out if you would like to know the differences between a Colt and a Savage vertical forergrip. Thanks to "deerslayer" for his analysis contained in the post.
http://www.machinegu...showtopic=11466

 

Thompson Rear Grip Comparisons - This details differences between different manufacturers or rear grips for TSMGs.

http://www.machinegu...showtopic=20813


Russian Lend-Lease Thompsons - This thread covers a trip that board member "Schatzperson" took to view and document a large number of Russian Lend-Lease Thompsons in Europe that were being sold. These are the same Thompsons from which many parts kits have been sold to the U.S.
http://www.machinegu...showtopic=10382
The following link displays a list of serial numbers from the "Mother Lode" of Russian Thompsons referenced above. You may have to click on the image, once it loads, to be able to view it in full size.
Russian Lend-Lease Thompson "Mother Lode" Serial Number List

"C" Overstamps on WWII Era Bridgeport Thompsons - Very interesting thread regarding overstamp markings found on WWII Thompsons that were not procured for military use.
http://www.machinegu...showtopic=11752

 

Identifying Savage and Auto-Ordnance Bridgeport Manufactured Thompsons - This thread covers inspector markings on all Thompsons, and highlights the differences between TSMGs manufactured by Savage and Auto-Ordnance.
http://www.machinegu...showtopic=20691

Technical Interest

West Hurley and Kahr Semi-Automatic Thompsons - Firing Pin Protrusion - Warning! Do not alter the firing pin length of a semi-automatic Thompson! It is part of the design, and altering it may be considered by ATF as manufacturing a machine gun. Please read the thread at the link below.
http://www.machinegu...showtopic=13762

West Hurley and Kahr Semi-Automatic Thompsons - Magazine Catch Modifications w/ Photos - This post shos how to modify a semi-auto magazine catch so that it will accept USGI magazines.
http://www.machinegu...showtopic=14128

Inspecting & Testing West Hurley Model 1928 Thompson Locking Slots & Possible Cracked Receivers - If you own a West Hurley Model 1928 Thompson SMG, chances are good that the Blish lock locking slots were machined incorrectly, and may add stress to the receiver of the weapon over time. This tutorial by Paul Krogh (PK) of Diamond K will walk you through an inspection and test you can perform to check for issues.
http://www.machinegu...showtopic=12622

Ordnance Steel - Explains much about the carbon makeup and machining characteristics of different types of steel, relative to the TSMG.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=9684

M1928A1 Extractors Losing Their "Flex" - Reconbob tells how to test extractors to determine if they have lost their "flex" after being in a Thompson bolt for 70 years.
http://www.machinegu...showtopic=14593

TSMG Magazine Feed Lip Repair - This was an excellent, illustrated post showing how to repair/reform feed lips on TSMG magazines.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=3667

Barrel Replacement Torque Setting - This thread describes torque considerations when replacing a TSMG barrel.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=7519

Barrel Replacement Witness Marks and Sight Alignment - Another useful thread for barrel replacement.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=6148

Barrel Replacement Headspace Questions and Answers - Self Explanatory...
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=5907

Barrel Thread/Installation Difficulties - I found this thread particularly useful for the information about barrel thread tolerances, and what to do if you experience trouble installing a barrel.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=9768

Aftermarket Barrel Thread Correction - Excellent thread with pictures, showing how to correct bad aftermarket barrel threads.
http://www.machinegu...showtopic=10108

Thompson Stock Staining Techniques - Excellent thread with pictures, showing how to most closely duplicate WWII stock color when refinishing.
http://www.machinegu...showtopic=10747
RoscoeTurner also suggests this link for information about military stock finishes:
http://www.odcmp.com...ing_article.htm

British Sling Placement on Thompsons During WWII - Why did British Thompsons have slings attached differently? This thread answers that question.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=4320

A Caution About Shooting Regular Ammo Through Blank Barrels - I'm including this link in the hope that it will help someone in the future. If you are shooting ball ammo, and blanks through the same barrel, please consider reading this post.
http://www.machinegu...showtopic=11956

 

Information on Thompson and Reising Actual Rates of Fire (RPM) -This is an excellent post by Jim C 351 where he compares rates of fire in Thompson and Reising Submachine Guns.

http://www.machinegu...showtopic=10534


Other Useful Thompson Informational Threads

Sample Freedom of Information Act Form - Use the information in this post of you want to file a Freedom of Information Act request with BATF for an NFA firearm that you own. Be advised that it's possible for a fee to be associated with your request to BATF for this service, but most requests are processed without a fee.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=5587

Colt Thompson Sales - Price Data 2003-2008 - This is an excellent thread that includes data for asking prices and sales of Colt Thompsons.
http://www.machinegu...?showtopic=5983

 

Why NFA Transferable Firearms Can't Be Owned by More Than One Person Without a Trust or Corporation - Very insightful thread on the history of the NFA, in response to an inquiry about dual title ownership of NFA firearms.
http://www.machinegu...showtopic=20319


David Albert
dalbert@sturmgewehr.com


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#179901 West Hurley meet West Hurley - The new Gun Parts Corp. C drum

Posted by TD. on 14 May 2017 - 05:15 PM

I decided to start a new thread on the Numrich or Gun Parts Corporation C drums. The first thread - http://www.machinegu...showtopic=20627 - was about to exceed 5 pages.

 

On Saturday I was able to test one of the new GPC C drums everyone has been talking about. But prior to that, I took a few pictures of two Thompson items from West Hurley, New York: West Hurley Meet West Hurley

 

West Hurley meet West Hurley.JPG

 

The GPC C drum is well constructed, much like the earlier "Crosby" L drums manufactured in Taiwan. Early reports on MachineGunBoards.com have been very promising. 100 rounds of Winchester white box 230 grain ball ammo makes for a very nice picture!

GPC loaded drum.jpg

The first C drum dump was perfect. 15 clicks, insert drum into gun that is pointed down range, rocker pivot on full auto, safety off, pull the trigger, and hang on for 7 seconds of fun! All went well except for the photographer. He thought the camera was recording.....

 

Not to worry. This just means I get to do it again. Never a bad thing!

 

http://www.sturmgewe... 2 Resize-2.mp4

 

I did one more C drum dump later in the afternoon with what are called spotter rounds. This too makes for a very nice picture.

 

Spotter Rounds.jpg

 

There was one hiccup early on, not unexpected, since these are fairly light reloads. And the Thompson was plenty dirty after an afternoon of shooting by several shooters. After the light recoil, it was smooth sailing to the end. Unfortunately, you cannot see all the smoke I was creating on the steel plates downrange. But you can see how well the drum worked with reloads!

 

http://www.sturmgewe... May 2017-1.m4v

 

I will have this C drum at the TATA and TCA Show and Shoots for everyone to view and handle. It will be available on range day for those that want to have 7 seconds of fun!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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#165736 Colt 1921A Help Evaluating

Posted by Arthur Fliegenheimer on 22 April 2016 - 10:28 PM

Kosher Colt. Jump on it!


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#161578 Huckabee Shoots my Tommy Gun!

Posted by deerslayer on 23 January 2016 - 04:59 PM

https://amp.twimg.co...cf-53e9f75907a5

https://amp.twimg.co...89-b14440d6924d

Mike showed up in Thompson Iowa and shot my Thompson.  At the Gun Bank.  
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#141047 Replica

Posted by Z3BigDaddy on 17 September 2014 - 11:06 AM

So a Priest, a Minister, and Arthur Fliegenheimer are in a bar.  The two men of the cloth get into a discussion about The Holy Trinity and overhearing the conversation Arthur pipes in, "You do realize that two thirds  of The Trinity are but replicas?".


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#131330 U.S. M-18A1 57mm Recoilless Rifle

Posted by Paul in PA on 15 September 2013 - 09:09 PM

Remanufactured U.S. M-18A1 57mm Recoilless Rifle

Started out life as a demilled pile of scrap, restored to it's former glory; as a Sub-Caliber shooter. Currently set up to fire .308, but can also be setup with a .30-06 barrel; uses 1919 barrels. Here are some pictures of it mounted on 1917A1 tripod, but I also has a bi-pod. The optics are clear and it shoots accurately.

 

The work was done by Steve Carlesco, of Gunsmith Inc. (GSI) in Guilford, Connecticut. I would highly recommend Steve, he did a great job, was fast, professional, and a pleasure to work with.

 

Paul
 

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#115097 Jump Cases Aka Griswold Bag

Posted by jim c 351 on 31 March 2012 - 10:22 AM

All,
I can't remember jump cases discussed previously. Lets see what info can be shared.
On page 109 in Mark G Goodmans book,--"US Infantry Weapons in Combat" the jump cases are referred to as Griswold bags. News to me, but if its OK with Arthur , its OK with me.
The cases pictured below were originally intended for the US Rifle cal 30 M1. Intended to be stored in take down condition. At a later time, don't know when, parachute riggers added an extension for the M1 carbine, full length.
Anyone who watched the movie "Objective Burma", staring Errol Flynn, will remember the troopers taking the 28A1 Tommy guns out of these cases ind installing the buttstock. Respected Ron should remember this..

For illustration purposes I have covered the extensions with a towel so you can see how they looked before and after.
As originally made the cases would work with the US M1 Rifle -disassembled-, M1928A1 TSMG- disassemled-, and US M1 TSMG assembled.
As modified with extension the cases would work with all firearms pictured. Since I don't know when the extensions were done, I can't be sure if the TSMG and Reising were still being issued. Perhaps someone here can shed some light.
IMG_1601_1_1.JPG
IMG_1602_1.JPG IMG_1603_1.JPG IMG_1610_1.JPG IMG_1609_1.JPG IMG_1605_1.JPG IMG_1608_1.JPG
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