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PostPosted: Thu Jan 25, 2018 14:15 pm 
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That could explain it.

I wonder if I'm reading the document I have from Tunbridge Wells HG wrong. Whether the number isn't a count, its a date. Hard to say.

On the Thompson, folklore has it that it was removed from HG units to equip the new Commando force. Whether this is true or not is questionable I'd say. It certainly was true that it did go, but when exactly I don't know. I'd be inclined to suggest that the Sten replaced it and withdrawal was more to do with supply chain of ammo than any other reason. As such you'd probably be able to align the withdrawal of the Thompson to the start of production of the Sten. Certainly there was a broader decision to use 9mm SMG ammo in the Western European theatre and 45ACP in North Africa and Italy.

BTW I am enjoying this conversation very much, it reminds me how much fun this forum used to be.

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 25, 2018 14:41 pm 
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Hi Andrei .. yes very enjoyable ... I believe the withdrawal of the Thompson began in 1942, the official reason at the time being .. 'to equip field units' .. ??
If there was a shortage due to the sinking of ammo ships it would be a logical reason perhaps, that the Sten replaced it is indisputable of course, the two dates, ie; removing the Thompson and issuing the Sten, being somewhat synchronised, to use a word ?

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 25, 2018 14:51 pm 
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From the same source as the previous info ....

The Home Guard Auxiliary Units were some of the first to see the Thompson sub-machine gun as GHQ prioritised supplying these units with the best equipment available. However in the regular Home Guard, units did not start to receive Thompsons until 1941. Numbers peaked at 43,017 issued by April 1942 when they were then rapidly withdrawn to be issued to the Field Force and replaced by the Sten gun.

A simple design, originating from Enfield that could be produced using stampings, relatively unskilled labour and a minimum of machining tools was tested and ready for manufacture by early 1941. This was the Sten gun,

There were a number of models of the Sten; in terms of issue to the Home Guard the Mk II and Mk III are the relevant models. The Sten both met a tactical need for such a weapon in the Home Guard and also allowed every man to be armed if rifles were unavailable.

In total, 2.6 million Mk II’s were manufactured between 1941 and 1943. A total of 876,794 Mk III’s were produced between 1942 and 1943. Both Mk II and Mk III’s were issued in substantial numbers to the Home Guard.

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 25, 2018 17:44 pm 
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From your very excellent document you kindly provided the link to (which I am reading like crazy and loving it!):

Home Guard returns show the first thousand Thompsons arriving in April 1941, and
numbers climbing to a peak of 43,017 one year later, after which they rapidly declined
as the weapons were transferred to the Army.43 Auto-Ordnance Corp. in the USA
produced 217,420 Thompsons during 1940-41, mostly for export to Britain; of these,
Hobart (1973, p.38) states, ‘over 100,000 were lost to U boat sinkings in the Atlantic.’
Given the desperate imperative to provide submachine guns to the British army, and the
fact that half the guns ended up at the bottom of the Atlantic, that any were issued to the
Home Guard must be taken as evidence of the importance of the Home Guard as a
military force – to share such a scarce resource in desperate circumstances, cannot
easily be dismissed as ‘tokenism’. Indeed once sufficient supplies of the mass-produced
Sten ‘machine carbine’ were available in 1943, all Thompsons were withdrawn from the
Home Guard and issued to regular units.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 26, 2018 11:01 am 
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As to manufacturing issues with the No. 4 rifle, my dad could attest to that. He was stationed in India, being trained to be an engineer (he wound up as a sapper, but that's another story). During a route march they stopped for a rest. He laid his rfle down and watched the foresight svivel around the barrel. At the range he fired ten[?] rounds and the bolt seized up and he had to kick it open.

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 03, 2018 23:26 pm 
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Real Name: Alan David
A few points.
Thompson SMG's inventory with the HG were reduced but they were never completely withdrawn.
Hobart is wrong if he stated that 100.000 ended up at the bottom of the atlantic. The true figure was that less than 5% of shipments were sunk.
Pattern 17 rifles were never dumped in the sea after the war. They were sold off by the Ministry of Supply, disposals.

Regards

AlanD
Sydney


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PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2018 13:00 pm 
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Just to come back to this for a moment as it has been bugging me somewhat ..

Nowhere I think has any statement been made that ALL Thompsons were taken away from the HG ....

If as you claim Hobart is wrong, can you please supply statistics to prove that ... there was an awful lot more than 5% of shipping lost during the war, and it stands to reason then that there was a lot more than 5% losses of the cargoes too.

There was a great deal of dumping into the sea going on in the 1950's, young as I was then I can recall seeing articles in the newspapers about that ... if you can emphatically say there were no P17 included in that at all, again, where are your facts please .. again as with the Thompsons, nowhere has it been said that ALL of them were dumped.

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War Correspondent
United Press
'The Writing 69th'
8th USAAF
Somewhere in England

... " I got vision and the rest of the world is wearing bifocals " ...

... " I won't be wronged, I won't be insulted, I won't be laid a-hand on. I don't do these things to other people, and I require the same from them " ...


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