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com

The SW 76 shown with its


stock in the extended position.

Nearly twenty complete working guns, but the receivers many of the new applications for
years have passed had to meet a minimum stage of construc- the receiver tubes were approved,
since former Presi- tion as set forth by the BATF. At midnight there were restrictions placed on
dent Ronald Reagan May 18th it was all over. modifications allowed to the re-
signed the infamous The firearm-collecting world is always ceiver tube itself. To date, the BATF has
McClure-Volkmer full of unexpected surprises; often parts or approved the Sten tubes to be made into
Act into law. Al- part sets that are unavailable for years sud- Sterling’s, Lanchesters and most recently
though this piece of denly show up in the warehouses of surplus clones of the Smith & Wesson Model 76.
legislation had a few dealers. One example is the parts and part Yes, the Model 76.
pro-gun clauses, a sets for military issue Thompson subma- The original 9mm Smith & Wesson
last minute amend- chine guns. These parts that were once in a Model 76 submachine gun was first manu-
ment was added that seemingly inexhaustible abundance were factured in 1968 with production ending in
banned all future gone and the prices of the few remaining 1974. 6,000 production guns were built
manufacture of ma- parts were increasing daily. Then, recently, during that period. There were other ear-
chine guns for pri- hundreds of mint to like new M1, M1A1 lier clones of the S&W 76 made. One was
vate ownership. The and M1928 Thompson part sets were found. the MK Arms Company model called the
law took effect on Who would have ever thought this would MK 760 and another was the Global Arms/
May 19, 1986. ever occur - sixty year old Thompsons in Southern Tool’s M76A1. Production of
This piece of leg- new condition! these weapons were just starting up as the
islation forever fixed Every now and then a small quantity of machine gun ban was being enacted, limit-
the number of trans- new, unused registered receiver tubes would ing production of these submachine guns.
ferable machine emerge. Most of the remaining tubes were Lack of magazines was always a prob-
guns in the system. originally produced to be assembled into lem with the Model 76, with originals be-
Since that day prices Sten submachine guns, but then just a few ing scarce and proportionately expensive.
have steadily in- years ago most of the Sten part sets disap- Then, seemingly out of nowhere, the easily
creased as the supply peared, shelving the plans to assemble the adaptable Suomi M31 magazines appeared
of transferable guns tubes into working guns. at bargain basement prices. Not only were
has steadily de- More recently, Class 2 manufactures got the magazines cheap, most of them were in
creased. Today the creative and have submitted plans to the brand new condition. The magazines could
cost of a transferable BATF Technology Branch to use the re- be altered in seconds with a Dremel Tool to
machine gun can ex- maining registered receiver tubes for assem- fit in the Smith Model 76 by simply remov-
ceed the cost of a bly into guns other then the Sten. Although ing a few thousands of metal from the front
new well-equipped
automobile.
Many Class 2
manufactures were
well aware of the
impending restric-
tions a few weeks
prior to the enact-
ment of the ban.
Most of the manu-
facturers worked Jim Burgess’ SW 76, a
night and day to copy of the Smith &
make and register as Wesson Model 76. The
many machine gun example shown here
receivers as pos- has the standard gray
sible. It was not nec- Parkerized finish.
essary to assemble

26 The Small Arms Review • Vol. 9 No. 5 • February 2006


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guide plate. Accordingly, with the maga-


zine problem solved, the asking prices for
the Model 76 began to increase.
The newest submachine gun on the mar-
ket is the product of Ohio Class 2 manufac-
turer, and no stranger to the Class 3 world,
Jim Burgess. Jim was a once a retail dealer
for John Stemple’s original line of subma-
chine guns, and also manufactured suppres-
sors for them.
Jim’s new creation has been designated
as the SW 76 (without the “&”). The SW
76 guns are manufactured from virgin tubes
that were originally registered by John
Stemple in 1986. Jim has enough parts and Above: Bottom view of the SW 76 barrel retaining catch. The original Smith
receiver tubes to assemble 100 guns. Jim & Wesson design was a straight bar. The redesigned curved catch is much
said that he personally test fires each gun easier to depress and hold.
that he builds to insure proper functioning
before shipping it off to the customer. All
of the parts of the SW 76 will interchange
with an original Smith & Wesson M76 ex-
cept for the bolt. The bolt is not interchange-
able due to the reorientation of the extrac-
tor and the Stemple receiver tubes have an
inside diameter that is slightly larger than
that of an original S&W M76, requiring two
sleeves that act as bearing surfaces to be
placed on the bolt to take up the extra space
inside the receiver.
A big question is; where in the world would
you find the part sets from the Smith &
Wesson Model 76? Original spare parts for
Above: Side view of an original Smith & Wesson Model 76 bolt (top) and a
the gun just don’t exist. The answer; from
bolt from the SW 76. Note the raised bearing surfaces on the lower bolt, and
semiautomatic copies of the Model ’76.
the different extractor positions.
During 2001 the Tactical Weapons Com-
pany of Arizona was engaged to manufac-
ture the parts and receivers for a weapon
that would be marketed as the Omega 760
carbine, a semiautomatic-only copy of the
Smith & Wesson Model 76. Initial sales of
the Omega 760 were brisk but quickly
dropped off. The disappointing sales of the
Omega ultimately drove the decision to
cease production and the decision left a
number of parts that were never assembled
into guns. Jim was able to purchase 100 of
the surplus Omega 760 kits and convinced
Special Weapons to produce the full auto
bolts and the other parts he needed. The
company agreed, and the 9mm SW M76
was born. Special Weapons still have a lim-

Left: Front view of the bolts clearly


shows the different extractor loca-
tions. An original Smith & Wesson
bolt is on the right, the SW 76 bolt
on the left. The repositioning of the
extractor increases its service life,
and provides a more positive extrac-
tion of spent cases.

The Small Arms Review • Vol. 9 No. 5 • February 2006 27


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ited number of new Omega 760 semiauto-


matic carbines as well as part sets available
for purchase.
One of the weakest areas of the original
Smith & Wesson Model 76 design was its
extractor, which will often fail after several
thousand rounds. One substantial improve-
ment that was implemented into the design
of the SW 76 is the relocation of the extrac- Left side view of
tor from the original 12 o’clock position to the SW 76. This
a 2 o’clock position on the bolt. Relocat- weapon has the op-
ing the extractor substantially reduces lat- tional black powder
eral stress on the extractor effectively ex- coat finish.
tending its service life. The extractor was
also beefed-up for additional durability. The
trigger, magazine catch and sear are easily
serviced on SW 76, pivoting on removable Magazine markings. Note that the SW 76 logo that lacks
pins that are secured with E-clips. While the “&” between the letters.
the sear on the original M76 is easily re-
movable, the trigger and magazine catch are
semi-permanently riveted in place.
The SW 76 uses the same magazines as
the original Model 76 and, like the origi-
nal, the plentiful Suomi magazine will fit
and function in the gun with some minor
fitting. The new SW 76 comes with instruc-
tions on altering the Suomi magazines.
Jim also has designed a suppressor spe-
cifically for his new SW 76. The powder
coated suppressor uses standard 9mm am-
munition and is designed to reduce its ve-
locity to subsonic speeds. The suppressor
will also fit and function on the Smith &
Wesson M76, the MK Arms MK760 and
the Southern Tool M76A1 guns. As mentioned earlier, the availability of free to dealers that send in a copy of their
I was able to get a first hand look and an these guns is limited to 100 pieces , and this SOT. Dealer prices for the SW 76 and sup-
opportunity to test fire the SW 76 at a re- is probably one of the last opportunit ies for pressors are available upon request.
cent shoot in Ohio. The SW 76 is indeed a buyers to purchase a brand new design and For more information, visit Jim’s website
dead ringer for the original M76. Jim newly manufactured machine gun. Jim has at; wwww.jmbdistribution.com. Email;
brought along several of his SW 76 subma- a CD available that has close-up views of jburges@insight.rr.com
chine guns to the shoot and all worked per- the SW 76 submachine gun, plus live-fire
fectly. He also brought along his new sup- demonstrations both with and without Jim’s JMB Distribution
pressor. It, too, was quite impressive and new suppressor. The CD even includes 4291 Valley Quail S.
quiet even when firing standard super-sonic complete assembly and disassembly proce- Westerville, Ohio 43081
9mm ammunition. dures. The cost of the CD is $10.00 and is

28 The Small Arms Review • Vol. 9 No. 5 • February 2006

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