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Ideas on Finishing a Rough M1A1


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#1 Rat-a-Tat

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 06:17 PM

Severely torched upper and lower, welded. Someone one did this long ago it appears. Had some

rust, pitting, etc. I started to clean it up but needs more help than I can give it.

Trying to figure out which methods best to finish it.

Thinking of sandblast and maybe durafil and/or duracoat flat finish to try to minimize the numerous imperfections.

Maybe leads to someone that does this sort of thing and has knowledge of Thompsons. Appreciate any thoughts/suggestions.

My wife though it would make a nice anchor for my fishing boat and numerous other real great ideas!

 


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#2 Black River Militaria CII

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 06:39 PM

Use the value of duracoat as a mask for fill-and-finish welding of the various metal surface issues. If makes no sense to expect any paint to “fill” and eliminate rough, pitted, degraded areas especially on flat surfaces. Paint will accentuate the cery textures you are trying to eliminate. The problem areas can be weld filled and the surfaces retrued to flat, and if this is done carefully and well, then duracoat will make the metal surfaces look really good. As you realize, the gun will never be more than a shooter, but it can look good nontheless. Kudos to you for wanting to make restore it.
I have been repairing semi-MG42s that were poorly constructed and some have been welded togther with stainless welding rod. The owners want parkerized or blued finish but the stainless will not take these finishes without special treatment and then lften not well. The labor to remove the stainless weld and replace with mild steel is prohibitive so duracoat has been very effective in putting an acdeptable finish on these guns. Same for other MGs I have built that have vintage parts that will not blue but turn redish in color despite alternate methods of bluing employed. Duracoat has veen extremely useful in these cases. Plus it it is a very tough finish and won’t oxidize. FWIW
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#3 Rat-a-Tat

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 08:37 PM

Thanks for the reply. This isn't a shooter. The upper and lower are welded together as is the barrel and even the magazine,

Not expecting to be able to hide where it was torched completely. Just make it as good as possible and hang some new/aged furniture on it.

A SBR shooter isn't gonna happen for me so I would be happy with a SMG display piece and hang it with my real Garand, M1 Carbine & 03 Springfield.

Then it would complete my bucket list having the rifles I used in the service.

I got to figure out how to post a pic or two that may help. 


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#4 Rat-a-Tat

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 09:51 PM

DhiMlKxm.jpg

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#5 Black River Militaria CII

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 10:15 PM

Oh, well, having repaired some registered live MGs that look like that gun I assumed it was a registered example.

Good luck.


Edited by Black River Militaria CII, 09 April 2019 - 10:15 PM.

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#6 Rat-a-Tat

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Posted 09 April 2019 - 11:29 PM

Nothing live on this, its welded everywhere and was torched in two places thru the upper and lower receiver and appears to of had the front

broken or cut off, so the receiver was in four pieces not counting the lower.

My understanding is that this is legal to possess and not considered a firearm, am I wrong?


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#7 Haenelistklasse

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Posted 10 April 2019 - 09:50 AM

Uhhh, well, I am certainly no expert but it appears like it was welded back together by someone making it an unregistered MG. If it were me, I would get rid of it. Maybe someone else can chime in that knows a bunch more than me. Take care, Haenelistklasse


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#8 Rat-a-Tat

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Posted 10 April 2019 - 10:35 AM

Well I never expected that as it's unfireable and locked up therefore not functional as a machine gun.

Hell I was just looking for some leads for someone to fill in some pitting and paint the damn thing!

But if for whatever the reason is illegal I would certainly like to know that.

Ya mean the wife was right its only good for a boat anchor, damn i'm never gonna tell her she was right!


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#9 Haenelistklasse

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Posted 10 April 2019 - 11:22 AM

Well, I understand what you are saying about being locked up but if the receiver is welded back together then I would say it is a MG again even if you can't get it to fire. Maybe someone else will come along that knows more than me. Good luck, Haenelistklasse


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#10 Rat-a-Tat

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Posted 11 April 2019 - 09:38 AM

Okay I think a grayed duracoat similar to Parkerizing would look right.

And I can’t remember if the mags are a gloss black or matte. But not wanting to

hightlight the imperfections a matte black would probably work nice.

Still looking for some places or individuals that perform duracoating which seems

The best way to go. And preferably familiar with Thompson’s. Appreciate any leads.

Thanks for the responses thus far.


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#11 Broadarrowmaint

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Posted 11 April 2019 - 10:24 AM

Get it bead blasted and then hot blue it for a dulite type finish. Ive done that to my semi Kahr 28 and an 80% reciever and it turns out great!
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#12 Black River Militaria CII

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Posted 11 April 2019 - 04:14 PM

I assume the breech is welded shut, right? Barrel welded to receiver, right? What’s the state of the inside of the receiver? Looks like the upper and lower are welded together so look inside through the cocking slot and see what it iis like inside? Bolt in it or no bolt? If bolt is in the receiver, can it go back and forth? If the bolt can. Move vack and forth time to have it welded in place. There is a degree of destruction to an MG receiver that goes beyond torching it into four parts. There are quite a few “dummy” MGs out there with complete receivers but the extent of the welded damge is sufficient for the gun to be a non- gun. If you are in doubt, you can always have a shop further weld the upper to the lower, bolt to the receiver, etc, etc. Have fun......
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#13 Rat-a-Tat

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Posted 11 April 2019 - 04:47 PM

it's a non-gun. No Doubts!


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#14 Rat-a-Tat

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Posted 11 April 2019 - 04:52 PM

There's alot of places that do nice gun refinishing work. Would prefer to find someone with some base knowledge of Thompsons and the patience 

to work on this. Any leads would be greatly appreciated. Thank You.


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#15 Broadarrowmaint

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Posted 11 April 2019 - 04:54 PM

Look up Ravenna armory. He does refinishing and would be happy to refinish your Thompson to a correct wartime finish. Hes a great guy, and does terrific work and he could make that Tommy look great!
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#16 Broadarrowmaint

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Posted 11 April 2019 - 04:55 PM

https://www.ravennaarmory.com
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#17 Rat-a-Tat

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Posted 11 April 2019 - 08:10 PM

Thank you for the lead Broadarrowmaint., much appreciated!


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