Applauding the efforts of mohawk64 for taking on the effort to make these much needed tools.
Had my first barrel changing demonstration & lesson from Gordon Herigstad on my own Colt and since then the opportunity to swap barrels on many other Thompsons including Colts. Doug's "Universal barrel wrench" is pretty good, there are a few additional complementary tools that are very valuable to have in addition to the "Universal barrel wrench"
Securely holding the valuable receiver without marring or torquing/warping it, is very important. Doug produced a “receiver vise” for this that has UHMW polyethylene plastic jaws that securely holds the nose of the receiver. For the receiver vise he also sold an optional “grip mount retainer” which would slightly move the grip mount in order to install the “Universal barrel wrench”, also important in order to protect the valuable finish, although I believe one can do this step with other tools, albeit slower and more cumbersome. Another item was a “grip mount puller”, that could be used to pull out the grip mount, if one desired.
There was a stand alone “Receiver wrench” he made that could also accomplish the same function as the “Receiver vise”. Personally have never tried my stand alone “Receiver wrench” and would not do so unless for some reason my Receiver vise was not available.
There is a “heavy duty barrel wrench”, that requires the sights/compensators to be removed. Removing the sights or compensators are other specialized tools that Doug made, not depicted or discussed in the article.
Sharing an article here with permission received today from John Buol Editor of the American Gunsmith.
This article sheds a bit of light on what I discussed including some of the Richardson tools but not all.
These pictures from another thread show my own Richardson tools in use, in action as we discover or reveal a serial number to a very special Thompson.
Shows the receiver with the nose securely clamped in the Richardson vise and the rear of the receiver cradled, Doug’s words, or resting on other end.
This picture shows the barrel wrench clamped to the barrel while on the receiver vise, ready to remove.
This picture the loosened barrel and partially shows the grip mount retainer. Hard to see but the grip mount is slightly moved away from the fins of the barrel.
This shows the receiver with the barrel removed, grip mount in place and the grip mount retainer has been detached from the grip mount.
This shows the receiver still in the receiver vise with both the barrel and grip mount removed.
Close up of the Receiver vise, the vise could be swapped to remove the barrel from either side.
These videos show my own Richardson tools being used on a Colt receiver to remove the barrel and “rediscover” the original serial number as the serial numbers on the receiver and lower frame were ground off. This is the Baby Face Nelson Thompson.
Thread on the Baby Face Nelson Thompson