Jump to content


Photo
* * * - - 2 votes

Replica


  • This topic is locked This topic is locked
560 replies to this topic

#1 railroader

railroader

    Long Time RKI Member

  • Board Donor
  • 275 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Stroudsburg, PA
  • Interests:Retirement, Firearms, Golf, model railroading

Posted 03 December 2005 - 09:50 AM

Everyone get out your copy of Webster's Dictionary, and look up the definition
of replica. The way I see it, unless you have an original (first one made) of anything you only have a replica. The first one off the assembly line is the original, the rest are replicas. This holds true for guns,cars, or anyting else that can be manufactured. But anyway, for now I'll enjoy what I have, and I hope you all do to, regardless of others personal prejudices or hangups.
  • 0

#2 Mike Hammer

Mike Hammer

    Long Time RKI Member

  • Regular Group
  • 780 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Louisiana
  • Interests:Travel, sun worshiper, margaritas, hot chicks, painting, scuba diving, movies, collecting movie memorabilia and autographs, guns, hot chicks, micro-beers, hot chicks, and did I say hot chicks?

Posted 03 December 2005 - 10:44 AM

Yea, sure, whatever. Well I guess if you are standing in front of me and my F.A. W.H. with my "C" drum and I decided to press the trigger and cut you in half with it in about 8 seconds, do you think people are going to say..."he was shot with a replica". Get real, this whole discussion on semantics has been done to death on this board already. You either have a real working "sub-machine gun" or you have a "semi-automatic gun". I'm not even going to discuss the "Thompson" name issue, just queue up behind Arthur F. on that one. laugh.gif

MIke Hammer
  • 0

#3 Mike Hammer

Mike Hammer

    Long Time RKI Member

  • Regular Group
  • 780 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Louisiana
  • Interests:Travel, sun worshiper, margaritas, hot chicks, painting, scuba diving, movies, collecting movie memorabilia and autographs, guns, hot chicks, micro-beers, hot chicks, and did I say hot chicks?

Posted 03 December 2005 - 11:18 AM

As far as the term "replica", it's used mostly with the prefix "non-working", usually meaning a dummy gun or a model gun. I think we can also stretch this a bit by adding the Kahr guns to that list as well since they are also non-working. laugh.gif laugh.gif laugh.gif

Mike Hammer


  • 0

#4 Whiskey Brother

Whiskey Brother

    Regular Member

  • Regular Group
  • 136 posts

Posted 03 December 2005 - 11:33 AM

But if he shot you with a 1927 SA do you think the media would say "He was shot with a replica!" or do you think they would say "Gunned down with an Thompson assault rifle!"

Words mean different things to different people. For instance, the Confederate Battle Flag to me is a symbol of heritage, because most of my family hails from the South, and my Great, Great, Great Uncle was General Robert E. Lee. To other people, it is a symbol of Racism.

Some people like Chevy.

Some people like Ford.

Some people even like Hyundai, although for the life of me I can't figure out why.

As far as guns go, sure I'd rather have a 1928 full auto or even an M1A1 used in World War II. (I collect WWII rifles as well.) But living in Kalifornia, I consider myself lucky I still have my West Hurley 1927A1 at all, let alone something full auto... tongue.gif
  • 0

#5 railroader

railroader

    Long Time RKI Member

  • Board Donor
  • 275 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Stroudsburg, PA
  • Interests:Retirement, Firearms, Golf, model railroading

Posted 03 December 2005 - 11:34 AM

Mike

Your are absolutely right, there has been enough said on this subject. The only point I was trying to make is this: My West Hurley says Thompson Sub-Machine Gun on the receiver, it is full auto and will do anything that a Thompson is supposed to do. As far as I am concerned, it is a Thompson, pure and simple, and I enjoy the shit out of it. Enough said.
  • 0

#6 Arthur Fliegenheimer

Arthur Fliegenheimer

    Respected Member

  • Regular Group
  • 3471 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 03 December 2005 - 11:44 AM

QUOTE (railroader @ Dec 3 2005, 09:50 AM)
Everyone get out your copy of Webster's Dictionary, and look up the definition
of replica. The way I see it, unless you have an original (first one made) of anything you only have a replica. The first one off the assembly line is the original, the rest are replicas. This holds true for guns,cars, or anyting else that can be manufactured. But anyway, for now I'll enjoy what I have, and I hope you all do to, regardless of others personal prejudices or hangups.

railroader,

I don't know if you have ever published anything other than a WTS or WTB ad, but Bill Helmer and Roger Cox have published books and used the term "replica" to describe the WH version of the Thompson. Doug Richardson and Gordon Herigstadt also publish periodicals and lists and use the same term for the WH.

Their editors went over their copy and had access to the same dictionaries as you do. What they didn't have was your myopic and distorted view of the definition of the word replica. If you prefer the less threatening terms reproduction/facsimile/knock-off/copy/clone as a substitute, so be it.

But there is no escape from the fact that when an entity (WH) stamps the name "Thompson," the bullet logo, and the name Auto Ordnance Corporation on a receiver when they were never authorized by the original Auto-Ord Company to do so, and waited for the the patents and copyrights to expire to use the logo and Thompson name, the result is a replica version of the original weapon as produced by the long defunct sole legally authorized company allowed to use those words/logos on their weapon.

The only point that you may have stumbled on with the invocation of the word replica for the WH Thompson is that as defined in Webster's Unabridged Encyclopedic Dictionary, "a copy or reproduction of a work of art produced by the maker of the original or under his or her supervision," Numrich/Trask had no such authority granted by Maguire's company.

Who would deny the Thompson as a work of art? The definition says nothing about the object in question being functional or not.

  • 0

#7 Whiskey Brother

Whiskey Brother

    Regular Member

  • Regular Group
  • 136 posts

Posted 03 December 2005 - 11:52 AM

I thought Numrich bought Auto-Ordnance back in the '50's? If Numrich bought it, wouldn't that give them the right to stamp "Auto-Ordnance" on it? Or am I missing an interesting bit of history here? Everything I've ever read on the subject said that Numrich owned Auto Ordnance for a number of years before selling it to Kahr...
  • 0

#8 Roland, Headless Thompson Gunner

Roland, Headless Thompson Gunner

    Long Time RKI Member

  • Board Benefactor
  • 683 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Maryland
  • Interests:Thompsons, Garands, All things WW2, Corsairs, Classic Guitars, Sex, Guns and Rock & Roll

Posted 03 December 2005 - 12:10 PM

I'm proud to say I'm the owner of a West Hurley Model of 1928 Thompson "style" submachinegun.

I also have a Remington "Springifield 1903A3" and a H&R M1 Garand. Are they replicas?
  • 0

#9 Arthur Fliegenheimer

Arthur Fliegenheimer

    Respected Member

  • Regular Group
  • 3471 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 03 December 2005 - 12:20 PM

QUOTE (Whiskey Brother @ Dec 3 2005, 11:52 AM)
I thought Numrich bought Auto-Ordnance back in the '50's? If Numrich bought it, wouldn't that give them the right to stamp "Auto-Ordnance" on it? Or am I missing an interesting bit of history here? Everything I've ever read on the subject said that Numrich owned Auto Ordnance for a number of years before selling it to Kahr...

Numrich only bought the crates full of parts, receivers, and prototype Thompson's from Willis, that came from kilgore, that came from McGuire. Since the original Auto Ord Company no longer existed since 1944, Maguire could not have sold any of these folks the company name or the Thompson name.
  • 0

#10 Arthur Fliegenheimer

Arthur Fliegenheimer

    Respected Member

  • Regular Group
  • 3471 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 03 December 2005 - 12:27 PM

QUOTE (Roland @ Headless Thompson Gunner,Dec 3 2005, 12:10 PM)
I'm proud to say I'm the owner of a West Hurley Model of 1928 Thompson "style" submachinegun.  

I also have a Remington "Springifield 1903A3" and a H&R M1 Garand.  Are they replicas?


If they were made without the authorization of the original company to produce them than yes.

Even Autoweapons.com now refers to their WH SMG's for sale as replicas. What would compel a Class III dealer, attempting to get $17.9K for a WH TSMG, to categorize a "Thompson" as such if there was some stigma attached to that appellation? They are just being accurate, not condescending, snobbish, or nit picky.

  • 0

#11 Whiskey Brother

Whiskey Brother

    Regular Member

  • Regular Group
  • 136 posts

Posted 03 December 2005 - 12:28 PM

So they did not buy the name, just the stuff that Auto Ordnance used to own? I didn't know that... I always thought if you buy a company out you get ALL their stuff. Has anybody been sued yet over this?

And speaking of replicas, this here is a replica, in my humble opinion:

http://www.hudsontra...ducts/tommygun/
  • 0

#12 Arthur Fliegenheimer

Arthur Fliegenheimer

    Respected Member

  • Regular Group
  • 3471 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 03 December 2005 - 12:33 PM

Why someone would make a complete wood version of a WH 1927A1, or more to the point, why someone would buy this, is a definite head scratch. A wood version of a 1921, 1928, or M1/M1A1 TSMG OK, but a semi auto WH/Kahr 1927A1 or the bizarre 1911A1?

By the way, Kilgore did not buy the Auto Ordnance Company out. By 1949, when Kilgore purchased the crates from Maguire, the company had not been in existence for five years.

  • 0

#13 Whiskey Brother

Whiskey Brother

    Regular Member

  • Regular Group
  • 136 posts

Posted 03 December 2005 - 01:52 PM

I'm guessing for the movies. I live right in the general vicinity of Hollywood, (I luckily keep it at 50 mile distance...) and you pick up little bits of info on movies now and then. Most, like 90%, of the guns you see in war movies and such are actually fake. A really good example of this is in the movie Saving Private Ryan. In the last battle scene, you see a German soldier get hit and he drops his K98k. Since he was carrying a replica made out of rubber, you see it hit butt down and bounce about 5 feet up into the air. It would cost way to much to arm every guy with a real K98k, and since the movie industry rents most of it's firearms props, the owners would not take to kindly to their expensive guns being thrown down on concrete and blown up into the air. So those scenes you see where the bad guy gets hit and drops his Tommygun, the director screams "CUT" right as he is about to drop it, the prop guy comes up and takes the real gun, and the replica is the one dashed onto the ground. It's all in the editing...

I certainly don't want to create a controversy, (Although from the looks of things, there already is...) because you guys who are lucky enough to live in a State that allows you to own full auto guns are definetly in a class separate from us poor smucks who can only have a 1927 model, but I found this in my personal library-

[Specifically, this is from the 1967 21st edition of Gun Digest, pages 46 and 47.]

"After World War II, guns, spare parts, and accessories passed through several hands. In December 1951, Gearge Numrich Jr., President of Numrich Arms Corps., West Hurley N.Y., aquired the name "Auto Ordnance" and a large stock of guns and parts. "Tommy Gun" is the registered trade mark of the Numrich Arms Corp.

Now, I'm certainly no lawyer, but if Numrich trademarked it and were stamping it on guns they made, and nobody challenged them in a public court of record, wouldn't that mean that they have every right to call a gun they made a "Tommy Gun"? Even if it was a model of 1927 with minor variations to comply with batF-Troops "regulations"?

And according to the owners manuel that came with my gun, West Hurley produced a number of full auto guns well after 1944.

Not trying to argue the point or anything here, I was just intrigued by the topic and thought I'd see what I could find... wink.gif
  • 0

#14 railroader

railroader

    Long Time RKI Member

  • Board Donor
  • 275 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Stroudsburg, PA
  • Interests:Retirement, Firearms, Golf, model railroading

Posted 03 December 2005 - 02:12 PM

Arthur

So it comes down to a matter of legality regarding authority or patent rights?
If so, I will agree in that respect you have made your point. However, I don't think your myopic remark was called for. I see things as many others like myself see them, for what they are, and for the pleasure we derive from them. I appreciate your knowedge on this subject, and if you want to consider the West Hurley a replica, a clone, a copy or simply generic knock yourself out.
  • 0

#15 Arthur Fliegenheimer

Arthur Fliegenheimer

    Respected Member

  • Regular Group
  • 3471 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 03 December 2005 - 02:18 PM

Whiskey Brother,

That article was an interview with Numrich who provided the author of the article with the erroneous information. It was of course in his interest to claim the sole rights to the name "Thompson" and "Auto Ordnance Corporation," yet Numrich/Trask never made a ground up new TSMG until 1975. That is 31 years from the last time a Thompson was manufactured by the legitimate Auto Ordnance Corporation, 24 years from the time Numrich bought the crates from Willis, and 8 years from the time of that article in "Gun Digest."

If Numrich had all the necessary rights since 1951, why did he wait so long to manufacture a new TSMG, never mind the semi-auto version?

In 1951, Numrich did not "acquire" the name Auto Ordnance Corporation or the name Thompson from Willis since Willis did not buy it from Kilgore and Kilgore did not buy it from Maguire.

West Hurley had nothing to do with the Thompson's produced prior to 1944. Thirty-one years after Auto Ordnance Corporation ceased to exist, Trask of West Hurley made smg's in 1975. There is zero connection between the 1975 West Hurley TSMG and the pre 1944 ones.

As I have already stated, by 1975 the patents, trademarks and copywriters had expired on the name Thompson and Auto Ordnance Corporation.

If you wanted to build a receiver and stamp your town's address on it and stamp Thompson and Auto Ordnance on it back in 1975, nobody would have stopped you either.

Since the original Auto Ordnance Corporation never made a semi-auto Thompson (the Colt 1927 Thompson was modified from a few of the original 15,000 Colt 1921 TSMG's), the WH 1927A-1 is a firearm unique to West Hurley without any connection to the pre 1944 Colt/Savage/AO TSMG's.

  • 0

#16 Arthur Fliegenheimer

Arthur Fliegenheimer

    Respected Member

  • Regular Group
  • 3471 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 03 December 2005 - 02:21 PM

QUOTE (railroader @ Dec 3 2005, 02:12 PM)
Arthur

So it comes down to a matter of legality regarding authority or patent rights?
If so, I will agree in that respect you have made your point. However, I don't think your myopic remark was called for. I see things as many others like myself see them, for what they are, and for the pleasure we derive from them. I appreciate your knowedge on this subject, and if you want to consider the West Hurley a replica, a clone, a copy or simply generic knock yourself out.

railroader,

You are right. The "myopic" reference was out of line.

  • 0

#17 Whiskey Brother

Whiskey Brother

    Regular Member

  • Regular Group
  • 136 posts

Posted 03 December 2005 - 02:53 PM

Auto Ordnance never made a 1927? But I thought it was in their catalogue? And some were "converted" to full auto?

If they did not make a 1927, why is it called a "1927" and not a "1975"?

It seems to me that this gun is no different from any other gun which carries the year of introduction in its monicker. Like the AK47, the 1895 Winchester, the 1911, the 1921 Thompson, the 1928 Thompson, the 1918 BAR, the 1903 Springfield, etc. etc.

If Auto Ordnance never made a 1927, then where does 1927 come from? It seems to me if the first SA Thompson rolled out of the plant in 1975, it should correctly be called "The model of 1975".

As for why Numrich didn't start pumping out new production Thompsons right in 1951, I imagine the fact that Gearge Numrich had a few other things going on like the Gun Parts Corp, and the 1934 gun control act, lack of contracts, and any number of other things that would preclude putting it back into production immediatly. (Also, perhaps he suffered from the same problem that Auto Ordnance has always suffered from,- the lack of a manufacturing plant of sufficient size to turn out finished guns in volume.)

I still don't quite see why buying the assets of a company would preclude the buying company from owning everything lock, stock, barrel and name, but like I said, I'm no lawyer and don't know the legalities of buying up other companies, I only know what I see. When I buy an "Ideal" bullet mould from Lyman, I know that Ideal was bought from Marlin who bought it in 1910 from John Barlow himself, (the founder of Ideal) and when Lyman stamps "Ideal" on it, they have every right too do so. When I look at my own Firearms collection and see my Stevens 240, or my Stevens 325A, I know that both guns were actually built by Savage, who bought Stevens out in 1920. It is still a "Stevens" to me, and even says so on the gun. (My 240 by the way, is a neat little O/U .410, one of the last American made ones, that my Grandfather gave me when I was 6.)

I can also certainly understand the reluctance on the part of full auto Thompson owners to relate their guns to the ones made by Kahr, after all, the Winchester Model 70 rifles made today are certainly not "real" model 70s like they used to make them before 1964, amy more than Kimber 1911s are "real" Colt Government models.

My point is that "replica" firearms are like the one in my earlier link. -Wooden and non-firing. (Or plastic, or die cast, or made out of chocolate)

I know my gun shoots, so it can't possibly be a replica, but I honestly don't care what somebody else wants to call it, even if they choose to call my Semi auto .45 ACP carbine an "Assault Rifle"... biggrin.gif
  • 0

#18 Arthur Fliegenheimer

Arthur Fliegenheimer

    Respected Member

  • Regular Group
  • 3471 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 03 December 2005 - 03:13 PM

QUOTE (Whiskey Brother @ Dec 3 2005, 02:53 PM)

If Auto Ordnance never made a 1927, then where does 1927 come from? It seems to me if the first SA Thompson rolled out of the plant in 1975, it should correctly be called "The model of 1975".


My point is that "replica" firearms are like the one in my earlier link. -Wooden and non-firing. (Or plastic, or die cast, or made out of chocolate)

I know my gun shoots, so it can't possibly be a replica, but I honestly don't care what somebody else wants to call it, even if they choose to call my Semi auto .45 ACP carbine an "Assault Rifle"... biggrin.gif

The only 1927 Model was the Colt 1927 TSMG where the 1921 or 1928 overstamp stamping was milled out and the "Model of 1927" was added in its place. The same with the "Thompson Submachine Gun " stamping on the Colt receiver was milled out and replaced with "Thompson Semi-Automatic Carbine." But these weapons were all full-auto Thompson's that were half heartedly converted to fire semi only. The WH 1927-A1 is a completely different animal in that is was made ground up as a semi.

West Hurley thought they could combine the 1927 year and the military A1 designation for their "1927-A1" nomenclature for their semi-auto version of a Thompson. Had they called it the "Numrich or Trask Model of 1975 Semi-Auto Carbine," as you pointed out, they would have of course been honest and accurate, but at the expense of losing the cache of the original Auto Ordnance Company named models.

You keep confusing the Auto-Ordnance Corporation of the pre 1944 era with the one that produced "Thompson" replicas smg's and semi's starting in 1975.

The term replica has nothing to do with whether the item in question functions or not. That is your own spin on the word. Even the MGC (Model Gun Corporation of Japan) advertised their blank firing (hence working as in moving parts) TSMG, MP-40's, etc guns under the name "Replica Firearms."

But one entity can not buy from another entity a company that hadn't existed for five years and had become a completely different company at the time Maguire sold the crates to Kilgore in 1949. The only thing left over from Auto-Ordnance Corporation were the crates. Had Kilgore actually purchased the Auto Ordnance Corporation from Maguire before, or in, 1944, before Maguire disbanded the company and formed the new and different company, then your theory would be correct.

  • 0

#19 Bill in VA

Bill in VA

    Long Time RKI Member

  • Regular Group
  • 652 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Southwest Virginia

Posted 03 December 2005 - 03:58 PM

So I'm guessing no one here really knows exactly how many angels can actually dance on the head of a pin then?
  • 0

#20 TD.

TD.

    Respected Member

  • Board Benefactor
  • 2951 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 03 December 2005 - 04:04 PM

As usual, Arthur like’s to put his slant on everything in an attempt to guide some members away from all the facts. There is really no right or wrong answer to this issue. However, one must first have all the facts before one can draw any conclusions. I offer this to the new board members who may not have spent time researching this subject on the board or in the several books published on the famous Thompson Submachine Gun.

First, a little history on the subject: For the sake of brevity, I am going to omit the early Warner & Swasey days in Cleveland, Ohio and the production of the Model 1921 Thompson by Colt Patent Firearms MFG CO. I will start the journey with the Auto-Ordnance Corporation under President Russell Maguire, the time when all the WWII Thompsons we have come to enjoy were manufactured by Auto-Ordnance and Savage Arms. In March 1944, the Auto-Ordnance Corporation under Russell Maguire was re-organized and a new parent company emerged named Maguire Industries, Inc. All assets pertaining to the Thompson Submachine gun became a division of the parent company; this division was titled the Auto-Ordnance Division of Maguire Industries. The assets of this division were placed in storage and sat dormant for the next few years. In 1949, Kilgore Manufacturing, Westerville, Ohio, paid $385,00 to McGuire Industries for all the remaining assets of what now had become the Auto-Ordnance Division of Maguire Industries. Kilgore had the intention to resale the now former Auto-Ordnance Division to the Egyptian government because officials at Kilgore thought the Egyptian government wanted to manufacture the Thompson Submachine gun. This deal was done with future manufacturing as the stated pretext.

This is where you have to make your decision about the continuing lineage of the Thompson Submachine Gun. I submit that even today $385,000 is a lot of money; imagine what it represented in 1949. I think is ridiculous to think Kilgore paid that type of money for a few crates of parts and old machinery? Given the money involved, I submit the legal department of one of these parties drafted a contract of sale. I expect it was a very simple contract assigning all rights to the Thompson Submachine Gun from McGuire Industries to Kilgore Manufacturing. To take it one step further and again given the amount of money involved, I am sure Kilgore would have expected the Egyptian government to have performed some type of due diligence prior to making any future deal so clear title and rights would have been important issue to Kilgore. In addition, I have never heard anywhere that McGuire Industries retained any rights to the Thompson Submachine Gun or ever claimed any future rights to the Thompson Submachine Gun. If you can make this link between Maguire Industries and Kilgore Manufacturing, the rest of the story is very easy to follow.

Unfortunately for Kilgore, the deal with the Egyptian government never came to pass. Kilgore then sold all the assets of the Auto-Ordnance Division of Maguire Industries to former Auto-Ordnance Corporation Executive Fredrick Willis at a loss. In a nutshell, Willis got what Kilgore purchased. Willis was in or had been in the gun business. Willis certainly would have done some due diligence to know exactly what he purchased. In October 1951, George Numrich purchased the former Auto-Ordnance Division of Maguire Industries from Willis. Like McGuire Industries above, there is no indication that Kilgore or Willis would have wanted to or did retain any rights to the Thompson Submachine Gun when it left their respective hands. It is also well known that George Numrich knew how to conduct business.

The lineage from Cleveland, Ohio to West Hurley, New York is what it is - intact. I suggest anyone with additional interest see an article by Ray Bearse, titled, The Thompson Submachine Gun, Weapon of War and Peace, published in the 1967 edition of Gun Digest. At the end of the story, George Numrich in a discussion concerning the development of a new semi-auto Thompson stated, to wit: “Numrich states that, since his company holds the patents, trademarks, etc. on the Thompson SMG, it is doubtful if any other company could produce a Thompson of any kind.” What is important about this 1967 date is none of the questions heard now days were an issue; Colt Thompsons were selling for under a $1000 and the West Hurley Thompsons we see and own today were just a dream. In addition, I have never heard anything that indicated George Numrich was anything other than an honest businessman. Given George Numrich’s statement back in 1967, I think it is safe to assume he acquired the total assets of the former Auto-Ordnance Division of Maguire Industries.

Now you have a much more complete picture of how the lineage of the Thompson Submachine Gun came to pass. It really doesn't make any difference how Roger Cox or other noted authors describe a West Hurley Thompson. We are not talking quality; we are talking ownership of the Thompson Submachine Gun and the continuing lineage of General Thompson's dream. Numrich Arms Corporation never owned or claimed ownership of the Auto-Ordnance Corporation, New York, New York. What they did purchase, several owners down the chain, was the Auto-Ordnance Division of McGuire Industries, Inc. and all rights to the Thompson Submachine Gun. The Auto-Ordnance Corporation, New York, New York discarded the name Auto-Ordnance Corporation and became McGuire Industries, Incorporated. Don’t get hooked into the trap of following the corporation names. Corporation names and re-organizations are easily done. Always follow the business enterprise and rights – this will lead you to the right place.


  • 1