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To Refinish Or Not?


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#1 Floridac3

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Posted 29 October 2004 - 09:44 AM

OK, got my Bridgeport 1928A1 Chopper in, finally. It was that beat up one on GB.com for 13K a lot of people were talking about a while back.. Well, it arrived, and I must say it is a lot better than the photos would have had you think. Almost all of the finish is worn off, and the spots left looked like rust in the pics. But there is no rust, and microscopic pitting in a couple of areas at best.. Really just a nice gun with no black finish on it. I really think I got a good deal on an otherwise structually sound gun.

Now, what do I do? Do I send it out to PK to get redone, or not? 2 People have already advised me not to touch it.. That it would be more valuable as is.. What is the concensus around here?


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#2 TSMGguy

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Posted 29 October 2004 - 10:30 AM

Congratulations! It's getting to be a real accomplishment to track down and buy a TSMG, whatever the price.

Just a personal opinion, FWIW, but if none of the original finish remains, I'd think that the gun would be the perfect candidate for not only refinishing but restoration, including NOS parts for any that might be worn or damaged. You'll enjoy the process of tracking down just the right items.

It's your piece and your decision.

PK can do a marvelous job for you, without compromising the original markings in any way. Besides the enjoyment that the gun will bring, you also have an investment to protect. Beware of someone who can't wait to attack the gun with a buffing wheel before applying a nice, even polished blue finish. The guns did not leave Savage or AOC that way. PK knows what is needed and you'll be ecstatic with the quality of his work.

Of course, the situation changes if the gun has any firm provenance, say, if the finish got left in the jungles of Guadalcanal!

I enjoy my '28A1 more than the M1. Can't say why. Nice choice!

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#3 Merry Ploughboy

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Posted 29 October 2004 - 11:23 AM

Congratulations!

Ownership of any machine gun and especially a Thompson puts you in an elite league. If you don't believe that, go to the range a few times. Be careful not to slip in all the drool others will be leaving.

I'm a shooter so I say refinish if you want to or not. Should shoot the same either way. If you don't like the way it looks, refinish. If you don't care how it looks, why bother. Once the original finish is gone, it's gone.

MP
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#4 colt21a

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Posted 29 October 2004 - 11:32 AM

well i know this personally..there are a ton of gun's being sold by some well known class three's{not me}
that are already refinished, restored,touched-up.... and parts replaced.....because i ask the hard question's...and always try and find out.

and its now fairly common practice..and everybody wants the good lookin gun..like women!

and in ten or twenty years if you still own it by then...very few of us do...ask some of the heavies,how many they have sold and owned. it will fill volume's...they are in the bizz to sell not store rathole and collect!!

remember there are few collector's who have the first m.g.they bought twenty years ago....and to those that do.they probably sold or went through another twenty gun's to get it!!

i have come to all these conclusion's by hard work,tracking stuff down.and plain asking.what did you own sell or have, in the past twenty year's..since the perry,rasmussem, earl,watson,fullmer,snyder,freund,cumming's,miller,and a few other collection's are all busted up because of death..many of these well known gun's have changed hands a few time's...and nobody know's now what might be original or replaced and refinished...

and with many new collector's /dealer's starting off in the past ten years....i don't think even some of them know!!

so if you want it to look new,by all means do it and make yourselve happy with pride of ownership!!

everybody at one time has a restored or refinish in the closet under the mattress,{hard sleeping} or in the safe.
wink!!

even those who won't admit it....or maybe just don't know...a few colt 21's have passed through my hands over the year's...and a few less then ten {redone}

they were sold as such.and everybody a happy customer..why???because they wanted the gun at a great price!!

so make a happy thompson owner, redo it.correctly...

and if anybody ask's, yep its done.ain't it purty??

and in 20 or 30 years the next guy or gal won't care...there will be just a "urban legend" story on it.how it got this way....

enjoy it.it's supposed to be fun!!

take care,ron
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#5 giantpanda4

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Posted 29 October 2004 - 01:26 PM

I don't disagree with the advice being presented here. Just would add one thing....

Before you refinish - I would keep it as is for a short time,and decide if you need it later. Use the gun now - get to know what is functionally impaired (worn!) then decide how much you want to get into repairing it. I apply this thinking to the cars I own, and some of them are better just left as is. I can always get them finished later, but I can drive the heck out of them now!

My 1928 thompson is going from a bad park job to a cobalt blue this winter. Took me a year to decide to do that. And I enjoyed shooting it even with he bad park job all year! I know the purists will not allow a cobalt blued reciever - but I would like it to be like an unaffordable 1921, so I'm gonna do it anyhow! tongue.gif

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#6 colt21a

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Posted 29 October 2004 - 02:28 PM

QUOTE (giantpanda4 @ Oct 29 2004, 01:26 PM)
I don't disagree with the advice being presented here. Just would add one thing....

Before you refinish - I would keep it as is for a short time,and decide if you need it later. Use the gun now - get to know what is functionally impaired (worn!) then decide how much you want to get into repairing it. I apply this thinking to the cars I own, and some of them are better just left as is. I can always get them finished later, but I can drive the heck out of them now!

My 1928 thompson is going from a bad park job to a cobalt blue this winter. Took me a year to decide to do that. And I enjoyed shooting it even with he bad park job all year! I know the purists will not allow a cobalt blued reciever - but I would like it to be like an unaffordable 1921, so I'm gonna do it anyhow! tongue.gif

good point i had a 1921ac shot the heck out of it,had it refinished....and sold it as such...the gun turned up in pa.by some collector trying to sell it as "original"for around $9,000.00

i told the guy he paid me $5,000.00 for it and moved it to somebody else..another was sold as a "junker"{not the plane} by me...the guy had it restored,and tried pawning it off to lomont for $7,000.00 he caught the guy in the lie and got it way cheeeper!!!

now i bet he had his $5,000.00 restored 1921ac colt back!!wink!!considering it could go for $15,000.00 or more.

i find humor in all of this...take care,ron


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#7 Floridac3

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Posted 29 October 2004 - 03:28 PM

A lot of good points, thanks. I think I will take the advice of shooting it a little, then maybe refinishing it when it is ready to be a safe queen. I am more into this one for the collecting/historic value than as a shooter, so I'll get my little fill with it then make her look new again. After that, it will be a little hard to shoot, as I hate messing up a perfect looking gun..

I will be sure to post pre and post pics once I go through with it, and I will be talking to PK for sure.

Thanks again!
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#8 JimFromFL

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Posted 29 October 2004 - 08:42 PM

Mine has been reblued.

The lettering is not as deep or crisp, but the finish makes it look like an almost brand new item.
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#9 96lt1ss

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Posted 29 October 2004 - 10:15 PM

If it was a 21 I would leave it original; being a Bridgeport Refinish, shoot, and enjoy.
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