We pretty much all drooled over a Thompson Submachine gun at some point or another, in real life or on the silver screen.
This is virtually a symbol of the prohibition era gangsters that used them to shoot up downtown New York, Chicago, Detroit and yeah, just about all the other American cities. For close quarters combat, or even a bit of spray and pray, the fully automatic weapons were a gamechanger when it came to stopping power. They were a common sight.
It wasn’t just a gun for the New York gangsters of the 1920s. It was also a gun that has gone into action with the troops in lots of wars for the British army, as well as the US armed forces. Then there are the special forces, LEOs, the United States Marine Corps and elite fighting forces around the world that uised it as an anti bandit gun. The British armies’ special units love it a lot.
For want of a better word, two of these guns starred in the St Valentine’s Day Massacre. Al Capone allegedly ordered the St Valentine’s Day massacre, when two of his men shot up 7 members of a rival gang in an underground garage.
How Many Are There?
1.7 million Thompson machine Guns were produced for WWII alone by the Auto
Before then, it achieved legend status long before it bowed out of military service and into the hands of organized crime. You will still find old clones in active service in the Soviet Union, Africa and other regions. They believe in 45 ACP stopping power.
The Tommy Gun has also starred in the Greek Civil War, the Banana Wars, the Chinese Civil War and Vietnam. So it has been places and seen things most of us shouldn’t.
The Thompson M1 is a legend, an icon in its own right, That means they are thin on the ground and they tend to be
How Can You Buy a Thompson?
So here we have got a few ways for you to buy a Tommy Gun. We’ll give you the expensive guns, seriously collectible firearms, and also show you a way to own a semi-automatic for a fraction of the price.
It won’t be the same, but it will be the difference between $2,000 and $30,000. So, you know, there’s that…
Is it Legal to Own a Thompson Machine Gun?
A Thompson is legal in some States, although it has to be pre-1986 to fit with the regulations.
So, yes, it is legal to own a Thompson Tommy Gun.
Just a few Thompson machine guns are included the 175,0000+ machine guns registered in the United States.
They Aren’t That Easy to Find
So they’re not easy to find and, due to this gun’s Hall of Fame status, you won’t get this world war winner cheap. All famous guns come with a premium price tag, and well this is one of the United States Original Gangsters and armed forces favorites….
Thompson SMGs are American legends. And yes it’s hard to find. In part, that’s thanks to the National Firearms Act.
Most of the fully automatic Thompson for sale ads tend to be pre-1986 National Firearms Act recreations, rather than active service weapons, when you read the ad closely. They’re still seriously expensive.
So consider a box fresh, semi-auto Tommy Gun replica, before you go too nuts with your money. It’s almost as good, better in some ways…
Basically these are all variations from Auto Ordnance, produced under license in one or two instances by the look of it. But basically, this is a fairly faithful semi-automatic recreation of the legendary SMG.
Where to Buy a Thompson Submachine Guns Replica
1. Auto Ordnance Thompson 1927A-1 Deluxe Carbine Rifle
- Price: $2,121.99
- Barrel Length: 16.5 inch
- Total Length: 41 inch
- Weight: 9.5lb
Most of the best Tommy Guns are actually semi-auto rifles these days. So it is with this one. This Auto Ordnance Thompson 1927A-1 Deluxe is the classic replica and it’s a common sight.
It’s a classic example of the Chicago Typewriter, and it operates from the closed bolt position. That’s as close as you’re going to get to the full automatic weapons without a Class 3 firearms license and a ton of money.
Massive Drum Mags Give 100 Rounds
This semi-auto Auto Ordnance takes the 100-round drum mags, too, as well as the classic 50–round drum mags and 20-round stick mags. The box magazines and Thompson combination do make for an exceptionally lightweight gun, too.
I mean this is still almost 13lb, so it’s no plastic AR-15, but then you do get a real wood vertical foregrip, a proper wood buttstock and a
A lightweight aluminum receiver helps trim the fat, though, and there really isn’t much excess here. There’s a purity of purpose that we love, even though we know a semi-auto 45 ACP rifle is a niche thing for fun at the range, and maybe pest control.
2. Thompson 1927A-1 Deluxe Carbine Tiger Stripes
- Price: $4,694.99
- Caliber: 45 ACP
- Barrel length: 18 inch
- Weight: 11.3lb
This is essentially a cleaner, sexier, but also less authentic version of the old Chicago typewriter. The gun price is high, but then it’s a work of art in its own special way.
This version of the Auto Ordnance 1927A-1 Deluxe is machined from billet steel and you get a Cutts compensator on the barrel, which is an epic muzzle device. A hard chrome finish does catch the light, and the tiger stripes are, well, tiger stripes.
You really cannot argue with the visual impact of this statement firearm, though. And some of you will love these high price, high spec semi-auto rifles.
Of course there is a serious price hike to deal with for this Auto Ordnance 1927A-1 Deluxe. But if you just want something different, this definitely works. It’s an art piece for the wall, a movie villain’s gun, a video games star and just maybe subtle home defense hiding in plain sight.
If the tiger stripes are where you draw the line, there’s a ‘simple’ hard chrome Tommy Gun here, for just over $3,000.
3. Auto Ordnance Thompson 1927A-1 Standard
- Price: $2,050.99
- Caliber: 45 ACP
- Barrel length: 18 inch
- Weight: 11.6lb
This is the basic version of the other rifles you see here from the Auto Ordnance Thompson 1927A-1 line. But it’s basically 90% of the gun for a lot less money.
You get a 10-round stick mag and you’ll have to buy drums separately. But, at this price, who cares?
Auto Ordnance Thompson 1927A-1 Lightweight Pistol
- Price: $1,900.00
- Caliber: 45 ACP
- Barrel Length: 10.5 inch
- Weight: 12.9lb
Think the Thompson couldn’t get more gangster? Well look again, this is the pistol version with the shorter barrel that drops the stock completely. For a CQB, it’s still an intriguing proposition.
This Auto Ordnance Thompson 1927A-1 is not cheap, but it’s a seriously beefy gun.
There are plenty of other options, but this does have a certain perverse appeal and we could imagine the home invader’s face when they’re staring down the barrel of this monster.
In the absence of actual automatic weapons, this will do you proud and it’s a great tribute to the best selling piece of world history…
Add a stock and you’ve got the SBR, too, like good ol Hickock here…
5. SilencerCo Tommy Summit Suppressor and Violin Case kit
- Price: $3,299
- Caliber: 45 ACP
- Barrel length: 11.5 inch
- Total: 32 inch
- Capacity: 50+1 rounds
- Weight: 12.5lb
Brownells got Auto Ordnance and SilencerCo together back in 2017 to create this kind of awesome gun. So they’re all gone, but if you see one, at least you know what it is.
Auto Ordnance is the company that started the T thing all the way back in 1916.
Then, General John T Thompson started the company as he searched for the perfect military firearm that had no recoil or gas-operated mechanism in the wake of World War I. The Annihilator 1, with a friction delayed blowback action, was unveiled in 1918.
In 1919 the Thompson Submachine Gun was officially ready for launch and General Thompson was soon to have a massive impact on the Second World War, even though he didn’t quite make it for the first World War army ordnance department.
Modern Company is a Cover Band
The new Auto Ordnance isn’t really the same sort of company. It does produce a series of weapons, including 1911s, but the modern Auto Ordnance is a nostalgic look back on the weapons that changed the world.
This might just be the most famous gun of all time and the simple blowback Auto Ordnance Thompson comes with the classic 50-round drum magazine. if State laws allow…
One of the finer semi-auto 1927-a1 long guns is branded as a SilencerCo sale, but Auto Ordnance produced everything bar the can there, too.
Unsurprisingly we guess, the Auto Ordnance Summit is the peak of their craft.
If you’re looking for a perfect Tommy Gun replica, you don’t want the hassle of a full auto and the FBI background check that goes with it, then this could be the one for you.
Note, could be… There are a couple of other complications, like the SBR set-up with the shorter barrel length and the silencer. That’s NFA territory…
45 ACP Ammo is the Perfect Fit, Why Change?
The Auto Ordnance Thompson comes with the same 45 ACP caliber and it’s a faithful reconstruction of the 1928 model Thompson. You also get the suppressor, which is cool and yet really does turn this into a painfully expensive package.
It’s heavy, just like the original, it takes common or garden ammunition and it’s pretty much the best way to shoot a Thompson. The vertical foregrip is detachable and you can pretty much set up your weapon as you want.
6. Kahr Arms 1927a-1 Thompson Rifle Trump Edition
- Price: $2,499.99
- Caliber: 45 ACP
- Barrel Length: 16.5 inch
- Total Length: 39 inch
- Weight: 12.5lb
This is literally a pretty faithful Thompson 1927-A1 replica with Donald Trump’s face on it. I mean why wouldn’t you want that?
Well possibly a few reasons, but I can’t think of any right now. This gun is awesome. This is Leftist baiting small arms fetish
Boys, you did us proud… Forget the Thompson’s Trench Broom in World War II, this could possibly start WWIII. And that makes the Kahr Arms Thompson 1927A-1 awesome.
Pretty Much Sold Out…
And for other
For pure comedic factor alone, we love this simple blowback semi-auto rifle. Kahr Firearms Group
This Kahr Arms Thompson gets a stick magazine, which some of you are just going to prefer. The Donald’s stick holds a solid 20 rounds in that box magazine, too, so Stormy Daniels was clearly wrong.
Why Is The Tommy Gun So Expensive?
This is the special edition, which comes in the violin case. The suppressor is also part of the package and they ain’t cheap, especially as this is one of the smallest and lowest profile silencers in the class.
You also get a violin case, which I believe are available on eBay for not that much…
And it does look cool, but I have to be honest I’d go for one of the ‘lesser’ 1927-a1 long guns in their Thompson replica range. The silencer just means an NFA tax stamp, it’s not really an integral part of the experience and this route was meant to be about avoiding
7. Group Industries Thompson Machine Gun
- Price: $30,000
- Caliber: 45 ACP
- Barrel: 10 inch
- Total Length: 34 inch
- Weight: 11lb
- Capacity: 50+1 rounds (Drum mag not supplied)
The Group Industries homage is a great gun and it will give you the complete, fully automatic Thompson Tommy Gun experience.
It’s not an absolutely faithful recreation. But it is a gun that has taken some of the best features of the other Thompsons and installed them in a simple blowback gun that is largely based on the WWII guns for sale.
Now make sure you can get the paperwork for this gun and talk to your local Law Enforcement Officers if you’re new to this and you live in a State with heavy gun control laws. Machine guns ain’t no joke…
Get Your Papers in Order
You don’t want to spend $30,000 on an ornament that could invite a knock on the door, no matter how pretty it is.
Most owners have done the dance before, though, and have several in their collection.
They know that the legal paperwork is worth the effort and you get a truly unique firearm that will light up your face and the sky every time you pull the trigger. Rate of fire is an actual thing in their lives.
You Need a Submachine Gun. And May Deserve One
If you can, you should own a submachine gun at least once in your life. Especially if you have an outside range and a steady source of cheap 45 ACP ammunition.
This gun fires from the open bolt position and like the M1928A1 Thompson, it has a two-position safety. You can opt for semi-automatic mode, or fully automatic, and you will get to live out your gangster or special forces fantasy.
Is that worth this much money? Well that’s for you to decide.
Nicknames for the Thompson Submachine Gun
Criminal types and cops all like a snazzy name for their latest toys. The Tommy Gun is one of many nicknames. Others include the Chicago Typewriter, and the Trench Broom, because, well, it could sweep trenches…
It was also called the Street Sweeper, Annihilator, Chicago Organ Grinder, Chicago Piano, the Chopper and Chicago Style. As the sharp eyed reader will have noticed, Chicago crops up once or twice.
How to spend even more…
Famous Tommy guns with a rich history of violence and prohibition era criminality in the hands of a famous mobster inevitably turn up from time to time. These are considered landmarks in American history. Deluxe Tommy Guns, too, coated in gold and the like.
Check the likes of Sotheby’s if you’re into high-end vintage firearms and gneral American history. The auction houses can part you with some serious money for
What About a Modern AR Pistol
If you want a semi-auto pistol caliber carbine, and lots of people do, you have plenty of options these days. You can get a 9mm, 10mm or 45 ACP AR pistol, and you can also opt for a 300 Blackout pistol.
Blackout pistols are a particularly intriguing option. Fit a suppressor and load up with subsonic ammo and the ballistics largely mimic the 45 ACP.
Load supersonic ammo and you’ve got AR-15 range and a 250-yard kill shot in a semi-auto AR pistol. That’s better than a Tommy Gun. We’re not going to lie. But sometimes that doesn’t matter. If you just want a semi-auto Auto Ordnance and you’re prepared to live with the traditional limitations, then you know what you got etc…
Have a look at these posts if you fancy something a little more modern.
- The Best 300 Blackout pistols on sale in 2022.
- Best 9mm AR pistols for sale.
- 36 of the best AR pistols on sale.
- 9mm Pistol Caliber Carbine rifles you might want instead.
Gun Parts & Accessories & Stick Magazines
Doesn’t matter if you go for an Auto Ordnance Thompson 1927A-1 Deluxe, or A Sig Sauer Copperhead. One day you’re going to need gun parts, and that day is going to be soon.
So where do we go for the best gun parts & accessories on the internet for your Auto Ordnance 1927A-1? Well it depends on the gun, but you normally can’t go too far wrong with the folks at Brownells, Primary Arms and Palmetto State Armory.
They’re all gun parts & accessories specialists in their own special way. Brownells is probably the most reliable for the real fiddly bits and gun parts.
The Auto Ordnance Thompson 1927A-1 Deluxe is its own thing, though, and you might just need to go to the company direct for spares, gun parts and specific accessories. Check the likes of Gunmag Warehouse for a stick magazine too.
But you know, while we’re here, these are the direct links for gun parts and accessories at our favorite dealers.
- Palmetto State Armory – Auto Ordnance 1927A-1 parts and complete guns. Including case hardened 1911s.
- Brownells – Auto Ordnance 1927A-1, general rifle accessories and parts too.
- Gunmag Warehouse – Stick magazine options, drum magazines.
Other Guns For Sale
While you’re here, we have lots of other things to show. If you want a bolt action rifles, shotguns, pump action and semi, then we have a gun price for you somewhere that will blow your mind. Night vision? Yeah why not.
We love rifles, pistols and and even bolt action pistols. That weird creation is one of our favorite hunting handguns right now.
We even have air guns, and we can point you at the best C02 Tommy Gun, Tommy Gun air guns right here. Check out the pump action air rifles that fire arrows first though.
Table of contents
- 2. Thompson 1927A-1 Deluxe Carbine Tiger Stripes
- 3. Auto Ordnance Thompson 1927A-1 Standard
- 4. Auto Ordnance Thompson 1927A-1 Lightweight Pistol
- 5. SilencerCo Tommy Summit Suppressor and Violin Case kit
- Why Is The Tommy Gun So Expensive?
- 7. Group Industries Thompson Machine Gun
- Nicknames for the Thompson Submachine Gun
- How to spend even more…
- Other Guns For Sale