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Identifying Contender Frames (with pics) V2 [message #45483] Mon, 16 September 2019 10:04 Go to next message
Crubear is currently offline  Crubear
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Photobucket is giving me a hard time about the number of pictures I've got stored on their site without paying them for the space. So I'm going to take some time and move everything over to this thread so it will be as permanent as this site is and no annoying PB graphics on the page. Where possible I'll post some clearer pics.

If you have anything you'd like more on let me know by PM and I'll see what I can do.


It's a good day if it starts while you're still breathing, it's a great one if the day ends the way it started
Re: Identifying Contender Frames (with pics) V2 [message #45484 is a reply to message #45483] Mon, 16 September 2019 11:08 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Crubear is currently offline  Crubear
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Way back in the dark ages, like the early 1960s, Warren Center developed a break action single shot pistol. In 1965 he joined the KW Thompson Tool Company and they introduced the world to the Thompson Center Contender in 1967 (picked from the Wikipedia).

Since that first frame was sold the Contender has gone through a variety of changes to make it easier to produce (frame etching), better easier to use (easy open), and stronger (G2). During each phase there were different varieties as well. I won't be covering all of them, but you'll get to see more than a few here.

As for barrels? This is the last you'll read of them in this thread. There are more than a few different barrel types, shapes, configurations, sights, etc... and I don't have the expertise or collection to show you all of them. The one thing I can tell you is don't ever look for standardized sights. They came off, got lost, got switched, got mixed, and otherwise may have very little to do with the barrel they're on.


It's a good day if it starts while you're still breathing, it's a great one if the day ends the way it started

[Updated on: Mon, 16 September 2019 11:13]

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Re: Identifying Contender Frames (with pics) V2 [message #45485 is a reply to message #45484] Mon, 16 September 2019 11:17 Go to previous message
Crubear is currently offline  Crubear
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G1 - Generation 1
index.php?t=getfile&id=8141&private=0
(Very early Contender Ad)

The above ad shows a very early version of the Contender.

It has:
- A flat or slab side
- A bare, almost skeleton hammer
- The trigger creep screw is accessed from inside the frame.

Pay attention to the grip and forend. The early caliber offereins were fairly low pressure and the stock sets were designed for such. You can see in the ad that there isn't much to the grip and the barrels have a screw with a round top. The forend just snapped on and off. When magnum calibers became popular in the early 70's and TC started to get calls. It seems the recoil force exceeded the clamping strength of the forend and Newton's Law of Inertia came into play. It would be shoot, bend over, pick up the forend, snap it back on, and repeat. The grip itself didn't do much to manage recoil either.

Flat/Slab sides were also available from the TC Custom Shop (Fox Ridge Outfitters), so just because it is a flat side doesn't mean it's an early Contender.
  • Attachment: Pic+01.JPG
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It's a good day if it starts while you're still breathing, it's a great one if the day ends the way it started

[Updated on: Mon, 16 September 2019 12:45]

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