Jump to content

Thompson Prices

Recommended Posts

I can't help but notice lately, that the prices for Thompsons have gone up exponentially in small amount of time...


The internet has been around for some time now and I know it does't help in regards of pricing due to people who are new to the class 3 game becoming involved after learning for the first time that they can acquire one legally..


But..why are the prices seemingly increasing "overnight?" (well maybe not that fast, but seemingly faster) Also, I know...the basic machinegun/submachine gun pricing has headed skywards too...


Are so many more people buying them for investment purposes that it drives up the prices? I mean to say, that when the Ingram series of subguns long considered to be near the bottom in pricing, jumps up in price....


What's going on? Are people driven to accquire Thompsons by viewing this forum? (ya right!) Does this forum help to drive up the prices of Thompsons? Or is it just the dealers wanting to retire on just one 1921A sale? I know it's probably just supply and demand but...

Link to comment
Share on other sites

May be posted tongue in cheek but..... This forum drives many people to Thompson's no doubt! I was just looking to get into class III and thought maybe a Thompson would be cool...... After reading this board I "knew" it would be cool.... Now I have 8 original pouches, 3 drums, police case, 15 stick mags, 2 out of the 3 cleaning rod types, 1 built kit 3 unbuilt kits, 1927A1 and 1927A5 with full auto firing pin, books, original old photo's, old catalogues.... OMG ALL because of this *&%$# board... And I only came here 6 months ago!!! Damn you all!!!
Link to comment
Share on other sites

AAAAHAHAHAH! caught Thompsonitus didn't you! The horror! when will it end? Take two Thompsons and call the doc in the morning...
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I actually loved the Thompson before discovery of this site. I think finding you guys have facilitated that dream, by providing the "how to" and also the courage to follow through. Sure we're probably part of the problem, along with the discovery of the internet, diminishing availablity, and recent Thompson popularity. I wouldn't change any of it though. On second thought, maybe we can do without the diminishing availability part.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Publicity is not the friend of cheap prices.


used to be, only people that knew of and loved the gun bought one. Because they wanted one.


Then the investor got involved.


Same reason reason I paid $500 for my 1961 Corvette in early 1974 before Corvette became hot items, and 2 years later they were up to $3K, and 6 years after that, $12K.


Never be on the backside of any baby boomer influenced hobby/investment.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Absolutely Doug, it is true Publicity just doesn't make cheap Thompson prices a reality! Although, the "baby boomer" hobby/investment part of this equation is also influenced by the 86 ban as no more transferables can be produced....
Link to comment
Share on other sites

As has been discussed on at least a couple of other threads before, all MG prices (except Chauchat) have gone up significantly lately.


This forum has been around for several years.


The Yoko Ono event, in a very short retrospect, appears to have been when Vector stopped making full size Uzi's. The whole market MG sort of freaked.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Considering what tube guns and conversions are now getting, a bonafide original factory made smg has real value, collectability, and a certain mystique lacking in the other type full auto weapons. But some Class III buyers, who are primarily interested in these weapons for investment purposes, don't seem to take this aspect of the firearm into consideration when building a collection. Perhaps quantity trumps quality for the investor of today. That certainly contributes to soaring NFA prices.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

QUOTE (SecondAmend @ Jun 11 2004, 06:55 AM)
The Yoko Ono event, in a very short retrospect, appears to have been when Vector stopped making full size Uzi's.  The whole market MG sort of freaked.


What, pray tell, is a Yoko Ono event? Almost hate to ask, because the last big one I recall....



Link to comment
Share on other sites

At the stroke of a few keys, you can now find anything you want in a matter of seconds. That's how I got re-interested in Class III a few years ago. Found Fred Vollmer's site. Then Bowers, then Subguns, and all the rest including this place.


The internet has made the available market greater while supply remains a constant. Actually, the supply in my opinion is significantly dwindling because of investment collecting. The Forbes magazine article opened another type of consumer to our world, one with large, deep pockets.


On the boards, you used to see tons of C&R beltfeds, Thompsons and the like. Colt M-16's and HK products were everywhere. The frequency of those appearances is down significantly. When they do appear, they command a significant price.


I was fortunate enough to be a partner in a deal with Mark Scott last year on a large collection out of Alabama. Prices since last year have gone up 15 to 20%. We sold some stuff to recoup our investment quickly, and looking back, probably sold the rest too cheap. But, we still did well on the deal.


In the class III world, you only buy too soon, not at too high a price.



Link to comment
Share on other sites



In the movie "Wayne's World" the term "Yoko Ono event" is used to describe that which is blamed for the inevitable. To wit, the Beatles were on the verge of breaking up when Yoko Ono entered John Lennon's personal life. Thus, it appeared that Yoko Ono caused the breakup of the Beatles when really she had little to do with the breakup.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hurry, hurry a genuine pre-ban 30 round Thompson stick magazine on Gunbroker in wax wrap....starting bid $75...anyone on this board responsible for driving that one up?


Saw a bundle of rustoleum 30 rounders at the gun show a couple of weeks ago for $6.95 each. I guess they have not checked with us first for price information. http://www.machinegunbooks.com/forums/invboard1_1_2/upload/html/emoticons/biggrin.gif

Link to comment
Share on other sites

AZDoug, et al.:


It was a Wall Street Journal article, not Forbes published 15 OCT 2003 and

pasted here:




Trigger Happy

Family fun at the machine-gun range.



Wednesday, October 15, 2003 12:01 a.m. EDT


WEST POINT, Ky.--A casualty list from the Knob Creek Gun Range, which hosted one of the country's largest machine-gun shoots this past weekend, would look something like this: Two dozen old appliances. A dozen junked cars. Tens of thousands of rounds of spent ammunition. Zero people.


Aim: Having a blast.


These statistics will be disturbing to the myopic antigun crowd, which fails to recognize the millions of rounds fired safely every year, including the tens of thousands fired at this twice-yearly event that draws everyday folks from as far away as California and Florida.


The special draw here is to be able to go full auto--something heavily regulated since the 1930s--with some of the most impressive hardware on the planet. I knew this was serious when I walked through the main gate and the first range offered flame throwers for rent--$65 for regular grade; $125 a squirt if you wanted to upgrade to Napalm.


This upper range was where they had the heavy stuff: everything from a Civil War-era Gatling gun to its modern-day cousin, the minigun, which can spit out 6,000 rounds a minute. Also on display was a bevy of Browning .50-caliber machine guns, as well as M60s, M-16s, Uzis, Browning Automatic Rifles and just about anything else you can think of. There was also a trade show, where you could buy everything from World War II bayonets to the guns they fit on.


After the usual safety checks, the upper range opened up--with a vengeance. The fully automatic gunfire was deafening, with a dozen or so heavy machine guns firing at any one time. Every now and then, the din would be punctuated by the sonic-boom-like thud of a .50-caliber sniper rifle.


I listened to this high-caliber cacophony for 10 minutes or so, then went to the lower range, where you could rent lower-caliber machine guns. The range was about 100 yards deep and littered with junked cars, old refrigerators, empty propane cylinders and soft-drink cans. The weapon that immediately caught my eye was the MG42, the workhorse of the Wehrmacht and considered by many to be the finest machine gun ever made. At just 25 pounds, it can fire 1,200 rounds a minute and is lethally accurate up to 1,100 yards. I had to shoot it.






After signing a release form and forking over $55 for 50 rounds, I hunkered down and took aim. With remarkably little effort, I obliterated the hubcap on a rusting car about 100 yards out. Alas, running through the 50-round belt took all of about four seconds. Before I knew it, the gun owner was smiling and shaking my hand. I was happy but wanted more.

This was a common lament. A guy next to me told me how he burned through $550 firing the MG42 last year.


"I just couldn't stop," he said.


Neither could I. But not before watching 10-year-old Emily fire the Heckler & Koch MP5, the preferred weapon of counterterrorist units the world over. This is a good point to note that although I appeared friendly in my NRA ball cap and eager grin, folks here were naturally skeptical of a reporter. They'd been burned too often by TV reporters who come to these shows once a decade and find the tiny percentage of attendees wearing Nazi uniforms or spewing some hokum about the Trilateral Commission. They then go back to their New York editing rooms and paint these extremists as indicative of the "gun culture." But after just five minutes here, it was clear that there's nothing more extreme about these people and their love of guns than the folks who travel the world over collecting Hummels or salt shakers.


Oh sure, there were probably too many camouflage camisoles for the average soccer mom. But for every ersatz Rambo there was someone dressed in Bermuda shorts and a golf shirt. More important, whole families were here, most of whom see a day at the gun range not as a precursor to Columbine, but as good bonding time.


Such was the case with Emily's dad, Rob, who, like most people, declined to give his last name. When asked by the MP5 owner if Emily had ever shot a gun before, Rob quickly rattled off an array of pistols and shotguns. "I think she'll do fine," the gun owner said. And she did.


A little nervous at first, she pulled the trigger with trepidation, squeezing off a round or two. But Emily quickly discovered why the MP5 is loved by the FBI, Delta Force and others. It's a full-blown submachine gun, but with the kick of a cap gun. With renewed confidence, she quickly expended the rest of her clip and walked off the line with a big grin.






Returning to the upper range, I found a guy renting out his array of .50-cals and paid $30 to fire four rounds out of the booming single-shot .50-cal. sniper rifle.

This gun was the subject of a media frenzy a few years back. With a range of over a mile and a muzzle velocity of more than 2,500 feet a second, it's used primarily by the military to disable armored vehicles by puncturing the engine block. In civilian circles, these specialty rifles cost $10,000 or more and are favored by a small cadre of shooting enthusiasts in the desert West, the only place where the gun can be used to its maximum range.


When my turn came, I took aim at what looked like a school bus (I couldn't tell because it was about 500 yards away and riddled with bullet holes). Lining it up through the telescopic sight, I aimed for the engine compartment and gently squeezed the trigger. The concussion blew up small clouds at my feet and behind the bus. The shell had easily gone right through the bus and into the hillside. Talk about bang for your buck!


This was the scene for much of the day. Just when you thought you'd seen it all, someone opened up with a set of twin-mounted .30-caliber machine guns, or the more lethal array of quad-mounted .50-cals in a swivel turret. The shooting continued into the night, with tracer rounds lighting up the sky in an array that would make the Gruccis jealous.


Although encouraged by my editors to rent the flame thrower, after firing the MG42 and the .50-cal., it just looked silly. Why scorch a car carcass with such a crude weapon when I'd had the privilege to fire two of the most highly regarded firearms in the world. It seemed like overkill. And here that's saying something.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Before the Internet, I bet the pool of Class III aware folks was small. These small groups of people were "educated" on prices and knew what each item was worth.


Sure the pool would grow, but at a very very very small rate. Since the pool grew at such a slow rate, the new comers still had time to become educated on the items and prices.


But now (due to the internet) its like the flood gates has opened (this is how i joined) and the flood of people have included many many uneducated people (many with money to burn). When I say uneducated I mean knowledge wise to the items and price.


And it does not help when they ask for a price quote and people say its about $5K more than its worth.


Thats my 2 cents.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Create New...