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To Rebarrel Or Not?


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#1 Cheesebeast

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Posted 09 June 2004 - 08:52 AM

Howdy All,

I would like to get some opinions on the whether or not I should rebarrel my M1 Thompson. It is a Savage manufacture weapon, very early serial number (matching- 214X) and in my opinion is completely original. It has the du-lite finish on it (with "hard luck and use" scratches). It closely resembles the M1s that are in Frank's book on the military Thompsons (which is excellent, incidentally). I know the provenance (sp?) of the weapon and it was registered during the amnesty period. It has the original finish, the original parts, yadda yadda. At some point the weapon was fired with corrosive primed ammunition and the bore is now "smoky". It also has evidence of surface corrosion (not pitting) on the feed ramp area and the tip (breech face) of the bolt. There is obvious rifling in the bore- it is not that "bad". Cleaning it is the pits, though (pun).

The Thompson runs 100% and is surprisingly accurate. Still, the bore condition bothers me. It is more of a perception problem on my part. I have an M1 Garand that has a perfect bore on it that was arsenal rebuilt, which I love. Still, that effects value and I know that.

I don't consider myself a collector, but I do want to retain the value of the firearm. I understand there are still "new old stock" barrels available for M1s. The gun has all Savage parts that I can determine and was never arsenal rebuilt (I think). It has no cross-reinforcement bolt on the stock. I took the stock off for curiosity reasons and found a serial number (matching) on the lower receiver. The wood has swollen over the years and now that serial number is reverse stamped into the wood.

Today's Thompson market indicates to me that I should get some opinions before I change anything.

Thanks in advance,
Cheesebeast

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#2 John Jr

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Posted 09 June 2004 - 09:06 AM

I say leave it alone. If it ain't broke...
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#3 Norm

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Posted 09 June 2004 - 09:24 AM

I agree with John Jr.

Just keep the spare barrel in the safe.

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#4 PATHFINDER

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Posted 09 June 2004 - 09:27 AM

I agree with John Jr. Unless you plan to show it competatively who cares what it looks like? Try carb cleaner or some other automotive cleaner designed to cut carbon deposits.

I look at owning these as being the curator of museum. Take care of them and preserve them to pass the history on. Preservation and conservation are the key.

Restoration is used only when needed and as a last resort. Our job is to pass these weapons on to posterity in as close to orriginal condition as possible.

I will be replacing the non-numbers matching bolt on my StG-44 as one of the lifting lugs broke recently. Thus preserving it in working condition(Chaniging it will not detract from the historical aspect of the weapon as the current one is non-matching). It has about 75-80% of the original finish. I will never refinish it as this is how it came to me. But, if I wear it down to less than 50% I will refinish it to conserve the weapon.
I would never start ranodomly changing internal parts in a effort to 'make it work better' or change or refinish the wood for cosmetic reasons (like some 'collectors' do).

It is what it is and ain't it fricking cool that you get to own it!!?
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#5 giantpanda4

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Posted 09 June 2004 - 10:04 AM

I agree with "if it aint broke...." but what are your plans for it?
If you have a LOT of shooting planned, make it a shooter - but KEEP the original parts on the shelf for if you want to return it to original. I do that with all my cars upgrades - and they are driven. If you want to put them on the shelf - the original parts are ready!

Good luck!

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#6 colt21a

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Posted 09 June 2004 - 10:14 AM

have a barrel liner,made for it,you will keep the integrity of the original on the gun,just a new inside liner.i had that done on a few colt 21a's...........nobody really new.since the outside barrel appearance is the original.as both had pits on the inside.once the barrel work was done.from the outside and inside,it looked new.since you are not replacing the entire barrel,give it some thought.......and if you do it you will be glad.........that will bring it back to original spec's.........from a shooters view,and most collector's......take care,ron
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#7 Cheesebeast

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Posted 09 June 2004 - 10:40 AM

Thanks All,

I appreciate the replies. I suppose I will continue to shoot the M1 until it is a smoothbore (does that change the NFA status? Just kidding) and then figure it out. Ron, interesting idea about relining. I have a .22LR that is relined, just never considered it on a "big" bore. The .22 shoots well, too.

Thanks again,
Cheese
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#8 Bill in VA

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Posted 09 June 2004 - 02:25 PM

well, I'll add my two cents in with the rest of the gang. As long as it funcitons fine and you're content with teh accuracy, leave it as is. My TSMG has a ringed barrel (like that when I got it, no bulge on the outside either) and is as accurate as I could want. I've tucked my spare barrel away for a rainy day.
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#9 Z3BigDaddy

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Posted 09 June 2004 - 03:04 PM

A little different point of view... Why not change it? All you have to do is save your original barrel... a) It's not like you can't re-install it cool.gif Do you "know" that this is "the" original barrel even?
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#10 Cheesebeast

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Posted 09 June 2004 - 03:29 PM

Howdy Z3 and Bill,

Good points on each side. I am not certain that this is the original barrel. It has an "s" mark on it and its' condition matches the rest of the weapon. Do I know? Nope. I am pretty certain. Sort of. Depends on what the definition of "is" is. I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinsky. That much I am sure of at least.

Cheese







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#11 PATHFINDER

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Posted 09 June 2004 - 05:20 PM

Yes. The (2) points where the bolt carrier engages the bolt to lift and unlock it. two small ears, lugs or camming points. One failed and went flying off under full auto fire. Never found it but if it flew as far as the empty brass does.......
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#12 colt21a

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Posted 09 June 2004 - 07:33 PM

craig jordan in pa. of tiffany arm's does the liner's.........also if you must keep it original by all means do so.but it sounds as you are not 100% pleased,if not line it, then be pleased!!remember its your gun and you can do what you want to it............have fun,take care,ron

p.s.i private message you not sure if you got it,also got the five e-mail messages you sent.............so this is the answer.wink!!
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#13 JimFromFL

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Posted 09 June 2004 - 08:43 PM

Depends on what you want.

If you do replace the barrel then store the original and save it. In fact, you could do this for just about all the parts if you truly so desire.

Or go with the flow and shoot the barrel til its done.

Oh, and don't worry about the "value". With the way the prices are increasing and the number of people interested in Thompson, not having an original barrel probably wouldn't effect the price more than a few hundred dollars.

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