Here are three stories which all have one thing in common. First, a well known dealer in spare parts has been contacting every well known Thompson collector trying to pre-sell a large shipment of "mint" C drums, some with consecutive serial numbers. Needless to say he is asking top dollar.

Second, in talking with a beginner collector he mentions having bought an absolutely "mint" C drum at the last weekends gun show, in an original box and got a fabulous price.

Finally, while at the Nashville NRA show a gentleman brought a C drum by to show us. The C drum had two of my partners salivating heavily. One of them called me over to look at this "mint" C drum. Mind you these are experienced TSMG collectors.

What do all of these events have in common . . ALL of these "mint" C drums were ….. the reproduction Numrich C drums produced in 1995. While these drums do look nice they are worthless as far as operation.


So let us review the differences between the two styles.



1.) Serial numbered on the face plates.

2.) Nickeled rotors.

3.) No ribs on the face plates.

4.) Has no markings on the drum face, other than the face plates.

5.) The stud which holds the winding key on the body is nickeled and tubular.

6.) Well made and if maintained will function.

7.) The rivets which attach the face plates to the body are the same size, which allows the drum to slide all of the way through the gun.



1.) Serial numbered (s/n less than 1000 have a zero prefix, i.e. 0124)

2.) Blued rotor.

3.) Has ribs on the face plate like WW II drums.

4.) Has winding instructions and a Thompson bullet logo on the drum face at the six o'clock position.

5.) The stud holding the winding key to the body is sold.

6.) Junk, if you have one which will fire all 100 rounds on a single trigger pull you are very lucky.

7.) The rivets for the face plates are two different sizes and only allow the drum to be loaded and removed from the left side of the gun.

So don't confuse the two drums. The Colt C drum is worth $900 and up, while the Numrich drums sell for $350-400. The Colt drums have a resale value, which will go up. The Numrich drums have no resale value and only time will tell if they will (be) appreciate(d).

This photo is of the prototype Bazooka (Now on display at the West Point Military Museum). Notice anything familiar? The grips and buttstock are from a Thompson. Making this the largest caliber TSMG I have ever seen

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