Repro Spare Parts Boxes Invite Fraud
Posted 25 June 2004 - 07:43 AM
Posted 25 June 2004 - 10:43 AM
|I would NOT put my name, special markings, or a serial number on it to let futures buyers know it isn't an original part. AZDoug 6/5/04|
|I have come to the conclusion that the only people that care about 100% authenticity have a financial stake in the game, hoping to buy today for $$ and sell tomorrow for $$$$.|
|Hell, after all this anguishing, I may just forsake the altaiods box and buy a GH box just for the hell of it. Anything that causes this much controversy can't be all bad....AZDoug|
So here is the equation:
If Forgery=Good & 100% Authenticity=Bad & Controversy=Half & Half, then X must = Whatever's convenient?
Posted 25 June 2004 - 11:48 AM
Как может мы обсуждать автоматы Томпсона, если мы не можем позволить этой "проблеме" коробки олова умирать!
Posted 25 June 2004 - 11:55 AM
P.S. You can't take it with you, whatever it is! Tomorrow a rusted Thompson spare parts box will be no more valuable that a broken piece of Roman pottery.
P.P.S. Phil, just for the record, I do believe, for our present fleeting lives that G.H., or anyone else, should ensure, by mark or slight change in production, that any reproductions are readily identifiable. It would be the honest, chivalrous, 'comme il faut' thing to do. However, as you and many others, on this board and elsewhere, have noted, the ethics of the masses, the lowest common denominator, money, the 'market', dare I say it...capitalism, seem to have taken an altogether too important place in society today, alas!
P.P.S. You all know I hate communism, socialism, etc, so don't even go there!!! I am merely saying that we need to step back from the canvas to gain a better perspective of reality and balance!
Posted 25 June 2004 - 12:11 PM
avtomat Kalashnikov- the automatic device of Kalashnikov.
avtomat Thompson- the automatic device of Thompson.
Phil- in "Норма", the "a" is almost silent.
Posted 25 June 2004 - 03:49 PM
|QUOTE (PhilOhio @ Jun 25 2004, 09:46 AM)|
But please, you unmarked tin box defenders. Think about the implications of your position if the practice is O.K. in all areas, not just selectively, for something you want. Shouldn't it also be O.K. for Gordon H. to start printing replica $20 bills? Well, lots of people want them. There are not enough around. I never have as many as I need. He's going to produce only the highest quality. You will not be able to distinguish them from originals. He is going to spend thousands of his own dollars to buy the equipment to put all the correct holographic authentication markings on them. He will sell them for only about 10% of the market value of an original, so he is being very fair. Anybody who cannot tell the difference is just plain stupid and deserves to be scammed. (Of course it is not really that. It is just craftsmanship and dedication of the highest order.) And the individual responsible is a Good Person, and it is just not right to criticize a Good Person, no matter what he does and no matter what the law says. And if the Secret Service objects and tries to intervene, just stiff arm them. Insult them. Tell them you don't want to talk about it anymore. Stop beating a dead horse. (And see what happens next.)
The difference is counterfeit boxes only have the potential to undermine the value of boxes in private hands. That is not a crime. Knowingly passing off an unmarked bax as original is fraud which is a crime.
Making fake $20 bills (what a piker, at least do $100's) , gets the USG very upset as it undermines the value of the currency. The reason underming the value of a currency is illegal, and undermining the value of private collector stuff isn't, is the goverment is a bigger, more organized enterprise, with muscle.
As for why not marking repops with additional info, then it is not a faithful repop as it is now modified. A true rreproduction should be indistinguishable from an original, anything else is something else, but I can't think of the word for it at the moment.
I absolutely see both sides to this issue, and if I owned half a dozen tin boxes (what reason is there to own six of these unless there is a profit motive?), I would probably side with the put-a-mark-on-the-box crowd, but as I own none, if I was going to shell out $275 clams, it better be indistinguishable from the real thing, otherwise I might as well get an Altoids box, as that is all it would be worth if anyone could just glance and say, "nice repop".
Go back to your provenance on the boxes. That gives the value to the box. Look at gold coins from sunken ships: ANY gold coin that can't be traced to a ship and salvage effort is assumed fake and only worth the weight of it's gold.
I just see that owners of boxes now have more work to do to prove it's originality.
Posted 25 June 2004 - 08:31 PM
I cast another vote for "let's get over it!" Ron A had it right when he said "not long ago a lot of members were openly hoping for someone to make these. Gordon did a helluva job and you can bet he spent a lot of time and money to make something few collectors would have otherwise.
About telling the difference, for once I'll have to agree with Hill, at least partially. You can tell the difference if you compare them to an original. I have three original cans acquired years ago. All three are identical. After receiving Gordon's can I compared it to my originals. His replica can is the same pattern as mine. So far, I've found three distinct areas that differ from the original, spot welds, bead radius and the edge radius on a key piece. They look great but do differ in these areas.
Considering the number of refinished guns, drums, accessories and especially literature some dealers are trying to pass off as mint originals, I think the "parts can panic" is much ado about nothing.
Posted 26 June 2004 - 12:23 AM
That was great! Whipping the horse after it is dead is feels good sometimes, but doesn't seem to get much more work out of it!
Maybe we need another horse.
Posted 26 June 2004 - 12:27 AM
If I thought Gordon was trying to pull something here I would agree with your position, but I know him, and I don't believe that was ever on his mind. I don't doubt that eventually some miscreant will try to age one of these and sell it to some unsuspecting soul. But, there was a demand for them and I think most collectors who purchase one will enjoy having it to display. I agree that a "makers mark" would have avoided all the controversy. I make reproduction cases, and I do mark them, even though anyone could tell my new cases from an original. My point was that you can tell the difference between the original tin and the replica with or without a mark.
I'm more concerned about the people who do try to pass off items as original. Unfortunately in my years of Thompson collecting I've seen some well known dealers do just that. Usually it's the restored gun or drum represented as mint untouched. And, with all due respect, I don't consider myself or anybody else on this board unethical because we agree or disagree over this topic. I see it as an expression of opinion.
As ron would say........(wink) ( sorry ron - i needed to borrow your trademark - send me a bill)
Posted 26 June 2004 - 12:56 AM
First, as a prologue, GH's contribution to the historical pursuit of Colt TSMG is infinitely more important than this recent dust up. But regardless of his unintended oversight (although he did consult others about whether to make a mark before selling them) about letting the boxes go on the market sans any marking, one either is in the camp that it's the duty of the manufacturer, regardless what the product being promoted by the /artist/printer/sculptor, to be fastidious about identifying a new version of an old original in some unmistakable, but inconspicuous, fashion. Or you are in the other camp that believes, "Well, it's not my rice bowl what happens to future buyers who don't understand that Caveat Emptor trumps chumps."
I think you misread Tracy Hill's sentiments about the replica parts box. There may be a way to determine the identity of a GH authentic replica when compared side-by-side to a genuine original box. But since the originals are not easily located for comparison, how, and by whom, will this test be performed? Hill's article was hardly ambivalent about his concern about sellers down the road passing them off as originals; he pretty much took a "take no prisoners" stand with GH. For anyone to proclaim that the addition of a mark would compromise the desired verisimilitude would by definition, never be satisfied with a "replica" to begin with.
Imagine if the original box did have an intricate maker's mark on it. If GH had duplicated that, and still not added his own mark, would that then be categorized as a flagrant attempt at forgery.
Posted 26 June 2004 - 03:23 AM
There has considerable discussion and many points made, some sensible some not so, but the fact remains that the tin has been made and is being sold and is mainly being sold to us Thompson enthusiasts. Thus it is now a “fait accompli”
Ron is quite correct. Gordon is just not the sort of person to deliberately set out to defraud.
This illustrated by the tin its’ self. I said before and repeat the following.
The tin was completely retooled in California. Not in China like most products today.
The tin was manufacture in the United States by quality American workers.
Thus the cost of production is quite high.
I seriously doubt if Gordon will make much, if anything from his sales, which are quite small numbers. His primary objective was to make available to us collectors, who will never be able to obtain an original tin, an opportunity to own “a spare parts tin”.
For me in New Zealand, the tin with all the parts works out to be close to NZ$670.00.
That’s about a week’s wages down here!
Maybe he should have marked it, may be he should have not, but the fact remains that as those who own both an original and a Gordon reproduction have stated, there are subtle differences, which, at time goes by will be known to all.
I also collect Luger pistols. The same difficulty exists in this field. A classic is the Snail Drum loading tool. Here people deliberately have set out to defraud and as time has passed, every one is aware and now, the reproductions are obvious and yet still fetch big bucks even when sold in auction as a reproduction…. Why - for the same reasons as the spare parts tin. There is simply no other way to endorse your collection.
Another is Nazi daggers. The same situation exists, and the forgeries are excellent and have deliberately been set up to defraud, yet, now every body is aware of this and collectors take care and seek help from experts if they don’t know for themselves.
I do not believe for one second that Gordon would ever set out to defraud anyone and to suggest that the production of this tin box is an invitation to invite fraud is simply inane.
Don’t forget that he publicly announced that the tin was available on this forum.
What really saddens me about this whole matter is that one of the most highly respected
Thompson collectors and researchers in the world has publicly bullied another.
Bullying is a phenomenon that none of us tolerate. That is the reason the Allies took their Thompsons and went into Germany, Italy and Japan and why the Coalition is in Iraq today. To simply stop bullying, .and over a little tin box….now that really is inane.
Posted 26 June 2004 - 09:59 AM
Murray is correct, this is the sad thing when two people who myself and I know most of us have great respect for are in disagreement.
Hopefully we can make our own decisions, or like me, realize that I don't need to decide (I don't have any parts boxes, real or repro). I hope this onen just dies away for now.
Pin it Nick!
Posted 26 June 2004 - 12:11 PM
Posted 26 June 2004 - 01:48 PM
|Perhaps if someone is misrepresenting collectables, it should be brought to the attention of this list, and word will spread.|
Interesting thought, and it works well in the world of entomology ( bug science ).
There are quite a lot of shady and dishonest dealers and collectoers in the bug world. Fallsified collection data, no permits, even the proported "RARE" bug popping up.
Once the bug community gets wind of thier shady practices, they are brought to the attention of several lists and other areas, and it usually results in no one doing business with them again. Could be the way to go if a dealer in Thompson goodies is constantly misrepresenting items.
Posted 26 June 2004 - 02:41 PM
|I'd want the barrel to appear like an original Colt in exactly every way, no repro marks whatsoever. If I were to sell a gun with a replacement barrel, I would mention that the barrel had been replaced. Mark Layton|
That's priceless! Unmarked repro items are necessary because any identifying mark might betray the item as a repro. But since "I" am a conscientious, responsible, thoughtful, loving, caring, compassionate individual, "I' wouldn't hesitate to enlighten the perspective next owner as to what parts are repros. Of course if the next owner doesn’t have "My" scruples, it isn't "My" responsibility. After all, "I " didn't make the repro parts, "I" only put them on the gun.
Isn't it interesting that Colt & Auto-Ord were hip enough to place a second serial number in the receiver's grip frame mount on the off chance the visible receiver serial number was obliterated for nefarious, or innocent, reasons.
Posted 26 June 2004 - 03:30 PM
I don't care what the next owner does because my intentions were not to defraud someone, and I have little to no control over what other people do. It is none of my business.
You(and I) can't legislate morals. Dishonest people are just that- dishonest.
The whole purpose of a "reproduction" item IS to be as close to the original as possible. If it isn't, then it called a CHEAP reproduction.
What if Gordon had marked the boxes? Then the mark would not be good (or big) enough. If it was so obvious, it would defeat the purpose of making it to begin with.
People that own the original parts boxes have to understand that reproductions, fakes, and counterfeits are part of the collecting game. They are an "occupational hazard" of the collecting world.
If an original tin box costs over $2,000 simply because of who made it and why they were made, you can bet that there will be reproductions made (and there were.)
After all, how do we know anything to be 100% that we don't see with our own eyes about anything?! EVERYONE adds their bias to EVERY story they tell; it does not matter if it is a story about Thompson related items that they are selling, or a used car.
Posted 26 June 2004 - 04:31 PM
I am reposting my comments from the last series on this subject.
Seems there are a few upset people here and frankly see both sides of the issue without getting my blood pressure elevated.
I for one do not believe Gordon's kits will in any way effect the collector market prices for true originals, the ones that have them are not selling. If and when any one of them decides they will let it go, well I can assure you Gordon's kit will not impact his price request and the lucky buyer will HAPPILY pay it.
Added Original buyers just need to be extra careful now as there are reproductions just like many other Thompson items, where that dilegence was not needed before. (See Greg's comments on the differences)
Regardless I guarantee someone somewhere at sometime will get burned, no if and or but about it in my mind, that is the tragedy.
I purchased one of GH's kit and I am a lucky owner of an original myself. Gordon's kit will make a nice presentation piece without having a absolutely rare item out of the safe keeping. I may even buy another kit from him.
Added: Forgot to mention my preference would have been to mark it.
Posted 26 June 2004 - 08:49 PM
For once I totally agree with you.
Thank you for the compliment.
One simple way to help (other than Gordon marking as you suggest) would be for some one who has both an original and a new original to post what they perceive the actual differences are and that could be come a FAQ on the Board.
PS... I still have not got a loading tool and I missed out on the repo one today. It sold for $1200 and was clearly listed as a reproduction.