Man finds Thompson Submachine gun in Grandma's basement


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U-235
April 14, 2013, 12:12 AM
Saw this on Reddit so take it with a grain of salt. Man claims to have found a Thompson Submachine Gun while cleaning out his Grandma's basement. The photo looks legit. Several people have warned him about the legalities of an automatic weapon.

See the link below, you'll need to replace the *** in the address with W T F (no spaces), the website software censored those letters when I posted the link.

http://www.reddit.com/r/***/comments/1c6zee/

Do the more knowledgeable of you here think this is for real?

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Tomcat47
April 14, 2013, 12:18 AM
This makes me wonder .... If it was in his family... :confused:

Could he theoretically apply for his stamp and keep it, or would this go all kinds of wrong for him?

And lets assume he is law abiding and Gun is clean... no history not in syaytem as stolen etc.

Its all good just been lost in grandmas basement for 40 years...

smalls
April 14, 2013, 12:21 AM
He needs to have a lawyer figure out if its in the registry. If not, then he needs to dispose if it in a legal manner.

No, you can't add it to the registry.

firesky101
April 14, 2013, 12:22 AM
While I believe there have been a couple of exceptions to the MG registry close, they are rare. I don't know the legalities of or the paperwork necessary to have a snowballs chance in heck of getting the ATF to sign off, but it will be a lot.

ETA: thought I had read a story here or there about war relics with a specific type of paperwork, but I cannot find it now. The only exception I see is if you can surface the tax stamp to counter the ATF's (self admitted) shoddy record keeping.

hso
April 14, 2013, 12:25 AM
If it isn't in the registry it needs to be turned in ASAP to avoid a felony charge.

rcmodel
April 14, 2013, 12:28 AM
This is very likely legit.
And very likely the gun will be seized by the ATF and cut up with a torch.

Unfortunately this sort of thing is very likely to happen more and more often as all the old WWII vets die off now and the guns they brought home with them re-surface out of old homes.

They will never be legal now, if they weren't properly registered prior to the 1986 cut-off date?

They will all be destroyed, no exceptions.
Unless your grandfather was General Eisenhower, Patton, Bradley, or somebody else very famous.

rc

BigBore44
April 14, 2013, 12:31 AM
Could it be donated to a museum so its not actually destroyed? It appears to be in fantastic shape.

303tom
April 14, 2013, 12:32 AM
Been me no one would have ever known about it..................

coolluke01
April 14, 2013, 12:35 AM
Interesting how rules about guns never have exceptions, but illegal immigrants get an exception...
Rant over.

Sad to see such fine guns destroyed.

Tomcat47
April 14, 2013, 12:38 AM
I was thinking museum also.....

And now I am thinking he is an idiot for posting it on the internet! :scrutiny:

He should have researched all legal aspects and left the world out of it!

Dentite
April 14, 2013, 12:44 AM
Taking a page from some we should just call it "undocumented" not illegal. :)

BBQJOE
April 14, 2013, 02:24 AM
This is why it's so important to let everyone in the world know what you're doing by posting on FB and everywhere else.:rolleyes::scrutiny::eek::banghead:

shiftyer1
April 14, 2013, 02:34 AM
I seen some pretty cool things come out of basements and attics!!!!!

InkEd
April 14, 2013, 02:47 AM
That would be awesome to discover!

frankenstein406
April 14, 2013, 03:05 AM
if he got a semi auto receiver for it could he keep it if he destroyed the other one?

Robbins290
April 14, 2013, 03:07 AM
So? Lets say it was registered in 1968. And it was in his grand fathers name. Could he legally own after all the legal paper work went thru?

Im kinda in the same boat. But the "firearm" in question was my great grand fathers and all the paper work was in his name. But he died a year after that in 1969 and no one registered it after that. It's not a tommy gun but wished it was

Bobson
April 14, 2013, 03:16 AM
Been me no one would have ever known about it..................
That's the part that makes me think its fake. Enough said, I think.

Vector
April 14, 2013, 04:46 AM
If it isn't in the registry it needs to be turned in ASAP to avoid a felony charge.

I guess I am ignorant when it comes to machine guns, since I was not aware there was a registry of them. Heck how hard would it be for the government to know where they are and confiscate them if there is such a registration process :confused:

Granted I know some about what it takes to get "permission" to own one(i.e. tax stamp), but did not realize law abiding gun owners readily accepted such an infringement on our 2A rights.
I guess I can therefore assume this form or taking away our 2A rights has never been challenged in court?

smalls
April 14, 2013, 05:14 AM
I guess I am ignorant when it comes to machine guns, since I was not aware there was a registry of them. Heck how hard would it be for the government to know where they are and confiscate them if there is such a registration process

There is a registry of all legal machine guns. The registry was closed in '86, and no new machine guns may be created for civilian use. You pay the tax stamp every time one that is on the list is transferred to a new person.

hickorynut
April 14, 2013, 05:31 AM
It very well could be reproduction semi auto. It does look new. I know someone this happened to, man passed and the wife found one in the basement call me scared to death what to do with this illegal machine gun. was kind funny to me not her. come to find out he had won it in a raffle back in the 70s

nwilliams
April 14, 2013, 05:34 AM
Could be real. Amazing guns have been found by people now and then...

http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headlines/2012/12/woman-turns-in-valuable-wwii-gun-at-police-station-weapon-buy-back/

http://www.abqjournal.com/main/2013/01/06/news/residents-give-up-more-than-40-weapons.html

So it's not out of the question that there could be full auto Thompsons out there buried in people's garages, attics and basements and forgotten about for decades. It seems to me that if something like this is found it would appeal to a firearms museum and could possibly be donated. If I found something like this I would contact the NRA's National Firearms Museum and see what they say.

rodinal220
April 14, 2013, 08:53 AM
Looking at the photo tells me its either a West Hurley made gun or a non-firing Collectors Amoury model.The wood is not WW2 for a 1921/28 style model,the wood would be rounded on the pistol and fore grip.
The finish doesn't look right and looks more like a zinc(Zamak) Collectors Armoury wall hanger.

scaatylobo
April 14, 2013, 09:07 AM
If its a real story about a REAL firearm.

Is it possible its a semi auto version [ I owned one way back when ] made by the same folks ?.

I cannot tell from that pic if it has a "rock & roll" switch.

And I agree it does not have the "look" of the real deal,I have had the luck to see & handle a few when I was LEO [ even got to fire um ] and that is missing patina and the "look".

dprice3844444
April 14, 2013, 09:15 AM
if it was previously registered to a deceased parent,he could probably get it transferred free via probate.lawyer would have to send a request to nfa enquiring if grandpop had any registered nfa act weapons,and go from there.otherwise strip it and sell the parts before turning it in.

Sam1911
April 14, 2013, 09:42 AM
I guess I am ignorant when it comes to machine guns, since I was not aware there was a registry of them. Heck how hard would it be for the government to know where they are and confiscate them if there is such a registration process

It isn't just machine guns, and it isn't recent.

The "National Firearms Act" was passed in 1934 and required that all machine guns, short-barreled rifles, short-barreled shotguns, silencers, and a variety of other miscellaneous firearms be entered into a registry held by the federal government.

(Originally it was intended that all handguns would also require registration, but that was struck from the bill before it was passed. Only in the context of that does the restriction on SBRs and SBSs make even a scrap of sense.)

In the last almost 80 years, the federal government has not moved to confiscate those registered firearms. But hey, maybe they will tomorrow! ;)

Akita1
April 14, 2013, 09:50 AM
It doesn't look like a war relic….unless it didn't see much combat, was packed away (by a person with museum skills) in a no-humidity environment, etc. Plus, thought the versions carried in WW2 had different barrels and fore ends, right? That one looks like either a recondition or a remake of a street version, given the condition and parts, IMHO. Still cool of course!

berettaprofessor
April 14, 2013, 10:04 AM
Unfortunately this sort of thing is very likely to happen more and more often as all the old WWII vets die off now and the guns they brought home with them re-surface out of old homes.


Actually, folks, this is going to happen less and less often....because most of them are already gone. An 18 year old who enlisted in 1945 is now 86 years old.....

Sam1911
April 14, 2013, 10:14 AM
Unfortunately this sort of thing is very likely to happen more and more often as all the old WWII vets die off now and the guns they brought home with them re-surface out of old homes.

We have a sticky on this very subject: http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=570018

Steve CT
April 14, 2013, 11:15 AM
Several months ago a Sturmgewehr 44 showed up in a gun buyback here in CT. The police officers running the buyback recognized it for what it was and have held it for the elderly lady who turned it in, in anticipation of it eventually going to a museum. It was a WW II souvenir brought home by her husband, who had passed on a while ago. Evidently an attic queen all these years, never registered.

medalguy
April 14, 2013, 11:23 AM
I think it's a non-gun. Look at the left side of the receiver rear section. See the difference in color in the pic? Probably a cast zinc receiver and the area where the manufacturer's ID would go was machined off in the die. Also the wood looks branbd new, definitely hasn't been in a basement for 40 years. BTW I still own two registered Thompsons so I do know what they should look like, and I've owned quite a few in the past.

wetpowder
April 14, 2013, 11:34 AM
I would have just kept my mouth shut.

Silverado6x6
April 14, 2013, 12:29 PM
I knew a buddy in Alaska who still had an M2 left over from WW2 from his father, fully operational. But man oh man you would never get a peep otherwise about if he shot it or where it was.

SharpsDressedMan
April 14, 2013, 01:34 PM
A real 1921 or 1928 SMG with a vertical grip would have wood that looks more contoured than that pictured. I think it is a reproduction, non-firing replica. Need to see down the barrel.

Dave P
April 14, 2013, 01:56 PM
"I knew a buddy in Alaska who still had an M2 left over from WW2 from his father, fully operational. But man oh man you would never get a peep otherwise about if he shot it or where it was."


From a reliable source, I heard that civilians were given M2's to help protect the shorelines in case of attack. In FLA, that was Lafayette County, at least. And some were never returned to the GOV.

If that is true, then I would bet that happened in Alaska also.

mr.scott
April 14, 2013, 03:08 PM
When will people lean to shut their pie holes? If it's been there for 40 years, just put it in your safe and don't post it on the internet.
I blame the Facebook generation in their apparent inability to not post everything online.

TheOld Man
April 14, 2013, 04:44 PM
The wood doesn't look right. The metal looks like some kind of potmetal. I bet if you jam a stick down the barrel it will only go about halfway. It would be a cool wall hanger.

gopguy
April 14, 2013, 07:15 PM
Another vote for dummy gun. It does not look right...

Here is a real 1928 and a real 1921, images are not mine image found on web.

1928
http://images.fineartamerica.com/images-medium-large/1-thompson-model-1928-submachine-gun-andrew-chittock.jpg

1921
http://pdhsc.com/NFA138_COLT1921AC.jpg

Fishslayer
April 14, 2013, 07:17 PM
That's the part that makes me think its fake. Enough said, I think.

You'd be surprised how many people know zilch about gun laws. Somebody I know used to drive merrily back & forth to & from the range with his/her handguns in an unlocked container. A "no-no" in California.

My guess would be that "possibly" the owner simply had no clue what he had nor the massive strokes the mere sight of such a powerful military style high capacity assault weapon could induce in liberal citizens...:what:

msb45
April 14, 2013, 09:33 PM
Quote:
I guess I am ignorant when it comes to machine guns, since I was not aware there was a registry of them. Heck how hard would it be for the government to know where they are and confiscate them if there is such a registration process
It isn't just machine guns, and it isn't recent.

The "National Firearms Act" was passed in 1934 and required that all machine guns, short-barreled rifles, short-barreled shotguns, silencers, and a variety of other miscellaneous firearms be entered into a registry held by the federal government.

(Originally it was intended that all handguns would also require registration, but that was struck from the bill before it was passed. Only in the context of that does the restriction on SBRs and SBSs make even a scrap of sense.)

In the last almost 80 years, the federal government has not moved to confiscate those registered firearms. But hey, maybe they will tomorrow!
__________________
-- Sam


Why confiscate them? At this point they're out of the reach of most people. Mechanically they've got to be failing at some rate. Effectively they've been confiscated for most of us. Progressives work the long game, so long in fact that most people don't notice the slow death. Sort of like the frog in a pot, slowly getting warmer.

joeschmoe
April 14, 2013, 10:16 PM
When will people lean to shut their pie holes? If it's been there for 40 years, just put it in your safe and don't post it on the internet.
I blame the Facebook generation in their apparent inability to not post everything online.
Not me. I don't see any advantage to keeping it, and a constant worry if it's ever discovered. Instant trip to club fed. If it's contraband, I don't want it near me.
You can't shoot it, can't sell it, can't keep it, can't show it off... (at best bury in the deep woods, probably never to be seen again).
Even in the most extreme case, post apocalyptic/invasion by Red Dawn forces, it offers almost no practical advantage over a semi-auto.

A real legit, legally transferable, original collectors grade Tommy Gun? Now that has real value and worth big bucks.

The-Reaver
April 15, 2013, 10:09 AM
And he mentioned it on the net? JA

I can see he's not to bright.

Mike Sr.
April 15, 2013, 10:37 AM
An idiot for telling the world.

blackrussian
April 15, 2013, 10:59 AM
It is a replica, as posted on reddit. The OP even mentions that it has been "plugged".

jmorris
April 15, 2013, 12:26 PM
Granted I know some about what it takes to get "permission" to own one(i.e. tax stamp), but did not realize law abiding gun owners readily accepted such an infringement on our 2A rights.

If you are a law abiding machinegun owner you already paid for the tax stamp.

Maybe the same thing as having car insurance, you can have it or not and either way still drive. One way is legal the other is not.

The difference is what the penaltys are.

Tommygunn
April 15, 2013, 12:47 PM
Looking at the photo tells me its either a West Hurley made gun or a non-firing Collectors Amoury model.The wood is not WW2 for a 1921/28 style model,the wood would be rounded on the pistol and fore grip.
The finish doesn't look right and looks more like a zinc(Zamak) Collectors Armoury wall hanger.

I agree with it being a Collector's armoury zinc wall hanger. Aside from the wood look at the rear of the receiver. I se what looks like a rectangular impression. There should be make & model # markings there.
I thing Rodinal220 called it exactly right.

Ron James
April 16, 2013, 01:06 AM
deleted, double/double

tsmgguy
April 16, 2013, 03:13 PM
Gun looks like one of the zinc fakes. Note the slab sided appearance of the fore and pistol grips.

Big Al Mass
April 17, 2013, 09:49 PM
That is a replica made by the Model Gun Company (or MGC) of Japan, probably in the '70s or '80s. It is a very realistic replica that is easily mistaken for the real thing by those that don't know guns. Check out the following: http://www.google.com/#hl=en&output=search&sclient=psy-ab&q=mgc+thompson&oq=mgc+thom&gs_l=hp.3.0.0l3j0i22i30.13884.15944.0.17060.8.7.0.1.1.0.292.1484.0j4j3.7.0...0.0...1c.1.9.psy-ab.25MUYhCDq0I&pbx=1&bav=on.2,or.r_qf.&bvm=bv.45368065,d.dmQ&fp=48852c8d9c493afc&biw=1280&bih=832

mo_dingo
April 17, 2013, 10:18 PM
Glad everyone recognizes this as a fake. Sad, but true!

hentown
May 10, 2013, 09:01 AM
Not me. I don't see any advantage to keeping it, and a constant worry if it's ever discovered. Instant trip to club fed. If it's contraband, I don't want it near me.
You can't shoot it, can't sell it, can't keep it, can't show it off... (at best bury in the deep woods, probably never to be seen again).
Even in the most extreme case, post apocalyptic/invasion by Red Dawn forces, it offers almost no practical advantage over a semi-auto.


Whaddaya mean, "you can't shoot it?" Why not? I have access, as do millions of Americans, to thousands of acres of land, on which there are no BATFE agents hiding in the bushes, waiting to catch me firing a non-registered weapon.

I've fired several f.a. weapons at our local WMA range (yeah, that's against the rules, too), and in other locations near where I live, and nobody's ever asked me for any kind of paperwork. (The firearms WERE legal, but nobody asked me.)

I've known a few folks who owned illegal f.a. weapons. I guess some of their family members still own them. There are no felonies, unless one is charged with a felony.

Carl N. Brown
May 10, 2013, 09:50 AM
That deeply inset total ID area of the receiver near the rear sight (where you would find Thompson Submachine Gun stamped level with the receiver surface on a real TSMG) is consistent with how the MGC and other non firing replica guns are built.
http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=182726&d=1365908007
My surmise is somebody found a 1970s replica non-gun and wanted to make a splash on the internet.

Even on the original 1927 semi-auto versions, only the one line "Thompson Submachine Gun" was milled out and "Thompson Semi-Automatic Carbine" stamped in the one line recess. (The modern semi-auto Thompsons are different internal from the original and external have no provision for a selector between the safety and magazine catch.)

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