Jump to content


Photo
- - - - -

Tsmg S/n 167


  • Please log in to reply
18 replies to this topic

#1 Sig

Sig

    Respected Member and Board Benefactor

  • Moderator
  • 1634 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 03 September 2004 - 03:54 PM

I added a page with a story on TSMG s/n 167.
It is quite interesting and once gorgeous weapon that I was lucky enough to see and handle.
On the website I ask a question regarding what you think it is worth.
Would love to see your opinions.
michael
  • 0

#2 Arthur Fliegenheimer

Arthur Fliegenheimer

    Respected Member

  • Regular Group
  • 3471 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 03 September 2004 - 08:21 PM

Ron remarked that he has handled this weapon also and discovered the Lyman site rivets were not blued.

The "Midas" gun sold for $85K and was always over priced. If this #167 was estimated at a value of $100K two years ago, I would doubt that it has increased substantially since it was always priced light years above other fine examples. Having someone actually pay the current owner $100K would certainly go a long way in confirming its true value.

  • 0

#3 Arthur Fliegenheimer

Arthur Fliegenheimer

    Respected Member

  • Regular Group
  • 3471 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 03 September 2004 - 11:25 PM

Simple. When a certain price is actually obtained from a buyer on a high proflie item that has been considered by the owner/seller/custodian, to be worth more than similar examples with less exposure, its value has been constituted.

The "Midas" gun initially priced 2 years ago at over $100K, could only realize $85K. Had the gun sold for the $105K figure, that would then be its value to someone willing to put their money where no one else has. It only takes one buyer to place a value on an item. The TSMG #167, trumpeted as the finest surviving example of the 15,000 guns in the Rimfire" video, is apparently not for sale. So the supposed $100K value is merely a figure touted by the owner, but not validated by a willing purchaser.

Using the term"value" as K-Mart bandies it about, is not the only practical application of the word. Price and value are not mutually exclusive. If someone paid $100K for the #167, then that is what is its value, if only to one person.

  • 0

#4 John Jr

John Jr

    Long Time RKI Member

  • Regular Group
  • 1956 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Mena, Arkansas, USA
  • Interests:Plenty

Posted 03 September 2004 - 11:45 PM

There is no such thing (at least at this time) as ANY of the 15000 guns being worth over 30K. 30K is stretching it.

QUOTE
The "Midas" gun sold for $85K and was always over priced.


rolleyes.gif Only a pure IDIOT would have paid 85K for a ruined gun.

The truth is only a few Colt Thompson’s have any real historical value, and just because YOU own it doesn't place it up there with those that have value.

The Irish swords have some neat history. The ones the Marines used have some neat history. The colts used by the gangsters have some history. The rest of the mass produced lot that was sold to reluctant LEO's are not interesting. Not to me anyway.

Like hardrede says, nobody likes the truth. Savage was offered the colt contract and turned it down. Colt was offered the savage contract and turned it down. Truth is Colt guns were used by terrorists (IRA), and gangsters (Criminals). Savage guns were used to save the world from the Nazi's death chambers. I own a Savage.

Nuff said.



  • 0

#5 Sig

Sig

    Respected Member and Board Benefactor

  • Moderator
  • 1634 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 04 September 2004 - 03:09 AM

Will add my observations on the rivits later.
I am amazed no comments on the history. That is one uniquely document TSMG.
  • 0

#6 Waffen Und Bier

Waffen Und Bier

    Long Time RKI Member

  • Board Benefactor
  • 645 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Interests:Like the name says "Guns and beer" (and really hot chicks who like guns and beer).

Posted 04 September 2004 - 06:48 AM

Really gents. $30,000 is nothing to spend on a collectable piece of industrial art/ Americana. A so-so car costs $30,000 (and is worth half that in a couple of years). Some SUV's are double price that and there is no shortage of them on the roads. If you are a realtor and sell a couple extra houses in the central Florida area, you could buy a $30,000 TSMG no problem.

As far as the value/price on #167, if someone has the money and the desire to own it, $100,000 may not be an issue. It is a pretty gun. Accessories really do a lot to enhance the center piece.

My 21AC is San Francisco PD marked (and traceable to the department by SN). I collect former police guns (and Colts), so it has a place in my collection. If I were in the market for a Thompson and had no other Thompsons, I would want a Savage 1928. It is the perfect representative of the entire Thompson line. If I could only own one SMG, it would be a 1928 Savage.
  • 0

#7 gijive

gijive

    Respected Member

  • Board Benefactor
  • 2444 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Illinois
  • Interests:Thompson SMG, WWII, Firearms in general.

Posted 04 September 2004 - 08:58 AM

QUOTE (Waffen Und Bier @ Sep 4 2004, 06:48 AM)
If I were in the market for a Thompson and had no other Thompsons, I would want a Savage 1928.  It is the perfect representative of the entire Thompson line.  If I could only own one SMG, it would be a 1928 Savage.

Although I certainly appreciate any Thompson gun, I'm not quite sure I understand the fascination with having a 1928 Savage made gun. Why is that the perfect representative of the entire Thompson line? What is the difference between that and an Auto-Ordnance made WWII Thompson 1928 model? They are absolutely identical guns mass produced for wartime use. I might think that the Auto-Ordnance made gun is more desireable since it was actually manufactured by the company that owned the rights to and designed the gun.

To me it's like the difference between the WWII M1 Garand contractors. Is the Springfield Armory made Garand a more perfect representation than the Winchester made gun? Or is the Winchester the more perrfect representation because there were less made? I guess I don't understand the distinction between one mass-produced wartime gun being more desireable than the other. As a collector, I can understand trying to obtain a representative specimen of each model; for example, M1 Carbine collectors trying to obtain one of each of the many contracted manufacturers of that firearm.

I am not trying to start an argument here, just enlighten me as to what makes the Savage made variation the premier model of the Thompson submachine gun?
  • 0

#8 Waffen Und Bier

Waffen Und Bier

    Long Time RKI Member

  • Board Benefactor
  • 645 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Interests:Like the name says "Guns and beer" (and really hot chicks who like guns and beer).

Posted 04 September 2004 - 10:12 AM

Wasn't meaning to slight AO or any other TSMG out there. AO would be okay, but I've always had a liking for Savage. Plus even though it's Savage made, it still says AO on the side, so you are covering more bases in a single gun. What I meant was a 1928 military TSMG with the compensator, finned barrel, British proofs, adjustable Lyman sight, etc. It's the best of all possible worlds. Got the classic 1921 style, but it's got some military in it. I have a Colt that I wasn't looking for, I just stumbled across it (and no, it's a keeper). If I were looking for one, it would be a 1928 military.

Now if, and I say "if" cause I ain't owned the gun since the day it was made, if #167 is refinished, that screws the value.
  • 0

#9 gijive

gijive

    Respected Member

  • Board Benefactor
  • 2444 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Illinois
  • Interests:Thompson SMG, WWII, Firearms in general.

Posted 04 September 2004 - 12:29 PM

Okay, I'm with you on that one. I like the early 1928 miltary model myself. I agree, that would be the most representative model if you had to choose one gun. We're on the same page with that one. wink.gif
  • 0

#10 Arthur Fliegenheimer

Arthur Fliegenheimer

    Respected Member

  • Regular Group
  • 3471 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 04 September 2004 - 08:08 PM

Ron,
Since your posting about your cursory inspection of the #167 that revealed the lack of blue on the rivets, my initial skepticism, about how this particular Colt TSMG became the celebrated Golden Fleece, was confirmed. No doubt this example has extraordinary historical paper work with original sales receipt, shipping details, and where, and who owned it since it left the factory. But is Falter describing this gun as only 99% because of the rivets?

Has this gun ever been fired beyond the factory test mags? Certainly substituting new bolt, actuator, Blish, etc, would conceal the tell tale signs of use beyond the test firings. It would seem that one need not even make the claim since the gun stands on its own with the paperwork and its original blued condition.

But it does seem that the "judges" who pronounced this as the numero uno example were Williams, Falter and Douglas. And I imagine they all had an interest in the Rimfire video. Surely the TCN, or another TSMG periodical, would love to have an opportunity to photograph and examine in detail, by people with the experience of an RK, and then submit their findings in the newsletter.

I still don't understand why several minutes of the video's time was not given to a close up inspection of this gun instead of a pan shot of only the left side of the gun.

In the Rimfire video, it does appear that the magazine catch is of a different blue than the frame and receiver. Of course it could be the poor photography, but it sure stands out in the video. The stock also appears to have a couple of character dings, which wouldn't even warrant mentioning if Falter didn't describe the wood as it was the day it left the factory.

  • 0

#11 Arthur Fliegenheimer

Arthur Fliegenheimer

    Respected Member

  • Regular Group
  • 3471 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 04 September 2004 - 09:29 PM

Ron,
Exactly! Even if the gun were never fired after leaving the factory, surely the handling by the relatives would have left oils from their hands that would begin to fade the bluing behind the grip. I doubt they used cotton gloves to hold this gun any time they handled it unless they knew something no one else did at the time of the weapon's potential value.

I believe that C&R NFA items were under "valued" for a long time until, maybe, 10 years ago, not counting Earl's prices. They have always been perceived as blue collar toys and now they get the respect special Lugers, SA's, and antique dueling pistols, etc, have been enjoying for over 50 years.

I would love to know how Falter arrived at the $100K figure though. But again, since it is not for sale, the only interested party concerned with what Falter thinks it's worth is his insurance company.

  • 0

#12 Merry Ploughboy

Merry Ploughboy

    Long Time RKI Member

  • Regular Group
  • 898 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 05 September 2004 - 08:34 AM

On Antiques Road Show the dealers are very careful to give three "values": (in increasing dollar amount) - the wholesale/dealer value, the retail/buyer value, and the insurance value. I guess there's also the "it's not for sale so I can make it whatever I want" value that is beyond even what an insurance company would be willing to have to pay up if the situation arose regardless of how much the insurance premiums were.
  • 0

#13 Sig

Sig

    Respected Member and Board Benefactor

  • Moderator
  • 1634 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 05 September 2004 - 09:19 AM

I noted comments from Arthur to Ron? So I am guessing Ron deleted his post for whatever reason.
Rear rivits on the sight were definetly blue.
Arthur - There are definetly signs of hand oils on the gun.
  • 0

#14 colt21a

colt21a

    Respected Member

  • Regular Group
  • 3636 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:arizona desert.
  • Interests:Whatever we can do in Life

Posted 05 September 2004 - 10:21 AM

QUOTE (Sig @ Sep 5 2004, 09:19 AM)
I noted comments from Arthur to Ron? So I am guessing Ron deleted his post for whatever reason.
Rear rivits on the sight were definetly blue.
Arthur - There are definetly signs of hand oils on the gun.

too much info makes johnny ill.....and blue,wow in 1985 in the white!!end of story.....enjoy....ron
  • 0

#15 gijive

gijive

    Respected Member

  • Board Benefactor
  • 2444 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Illinois
  • Interests:Thompson SMG, WWII, Firearms in general.

Posted 05 September 2004 - 10:48 AM

One thing I didn't understand in the letter posted on Sig's web site is that fact that the original documentation includes the original hand written note asking for information on Thompson guns and the original hand written order from the buyer. Why would Auto-Ordnance return the original hand written documentation about the order to the buyer? The only practical means of making copies in those days was using carbon paper. Are these hand written notes carbon copies? If not, I would be suspicious about the original handwritten notes being authentic unless the buyer requested their return, which seems unlikely.
  • 0

#16 Sig

Sig

    Respected Member and Board Benefactor

  • Moderator
  • 1634 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 05 September 2004 - 10:55 AM

It has been about 8 months since I observed the paperwork. One of these handwritten letters was a draft prior to being typed I guess. The drafts clearly were that drafts with edits and all.
  • 0

#17 Arthur Fliegenheimer

Arthur Fliegenheimer

    Respected Member

  • Regular Group
  • 3471 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 05 September 2004 - 11:47 AM

Sig,
I think the problem with the #1 Best Colt TSMG self addressed label is that, I imagine, there are no publicized photos of this gun taken at various times from 1921 through the decades until 1992, when the Rimfire video came out. The Lyman rivets (as attested to by Ron), could have been in the white even in the video since the camera was only permitted to show the TV side.

Falter describes this example as having absolutely perfect factory wood, zero pivot wear, zero actuator wear, zero muzzle wear, zero grip area wear, zero wear on frame under butt stock, zero interior wear, and zero wear on the original blue finish from handling over the previous 70 years to the time of the video.

The problem is that even if a TSMG, or any firearm, was never fired, and left in a gun rack, safe, vault, FBI/PD case, unless the custodian of the weapon took the weapon down for periodical cleanings, there would be visible oxidation occurring. Conversely, if there was handling by said custodians, they would not have resisted sliding the bolt back, surely to enable drum placement, and moving the pivots, etc.

In th end, what Falter has is a very good annotated 99% example that, even by current skyrocketing prices for NFA weapons, is probably more realistically in appreciation to be in the $50K range as Ron proffered. Figure $40K for TSMG in essentially 100% (non verified) condition, $5K-$10K maximum for the documentation, $5K for the C drum. Since the gun was not owned by an historical figure, nor took part in an historical event, I am at a loss to justify the extra $50k for an example that is perhaps 2% better than other existing examples.

The only way to crown this TSMG with the $100K coronation is if there was an examination by independent experts willing to put their reputations on the line confirming the gun to be the most representative existing example of how a Colt TSMG looked when it left the factory.

Since this will never happen, what the buyer has to work with is either their own powers of observation and relative experience, or Falter's word.

  • 0

#18 colt21a

colt21a

    Respected Member

  • Regular Group
  • 3636 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:arizona desert.
  • Interests:Whatever we can do in Life

Posted 05 September 2004 - 12:44 PM

i will give my word>>>>now somebody pay me $100,000.00 for it...fat chance...

i can find a fault someplace on all thompson's, man made them.......by machines that man made...

blue steel and wood..heck its worth a million buck's..why be a pauper and put $100,000.00 on it...then some rich braggart can show his buddies and say this cost me more then a million!! ain't it sweeeet!!! wink!!

and to sig i deleted my responses,since i don't want some cryin nasty e-mail's because of my comments here or phone call's........yep i still get them thing's..

let the cards fall how they are dealth.


{now in storage i have al capones......vault's of...
  • 0

#19 aut-ord-co

aut-ord-co

    Respected Member

  • Board Benefactor
  • 242 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 06 September 2004 - 09:00 PM

As I have posted before about #167, when I saw this Colt back in 1992 and again, I believe, in 1993 at the first two TCA Shows it was always under glass. I couldn't see the rivets because of the tilt of the display case. But, one thing that I remembered was the color of the wood. I looked at this gun for quite a while. I remember commenting at the time that it appeared more brown than I thought the stocks should be. Talking to Cox back in 1979 and during the early eighties, I thought the higher grade Colts had more predominant red color in their wood. (Cox's book cover) Yes, wood is wood and there are always variations. But my lasting impression of #167 is that the wood was more brown than it "should be" (if that's the correct phrase) for a pristine Colt.
  • 0