I would like to start a thread where we can post examples of fake wings from WWI. Later, I will start a thread for WWII Allied fakes. please don't hesitate to add to this thread so it may serve as a reference guide to fakes.
This thread is not about trashing the individual who may be selling the wings we post, it is about educating ourselves so when we do see them on sites, we can steer clear of them. There is a lot of deliberate "crookery" that happens - true, however sellers in some cases may really not know that what they are selling is bad. As Oddball would say "Don't hit me with them negative vibes man".
This particular wing is pretending to be a hand-chased (chiseled) example, however, the detail is crude and very poor. The "gold" US on the shield appears to be brass, gold does not tarnish like this. In fact, there are traces of green verdigris around both the U and the S if you look closely...silver does not turn green either by the way. The shield is poorly detailed behind the US and the design is inconsistent - something you would not find on a period hand chased piece. The piece, in my opinion, looks as if an attempt has been made to artificially age it. Look at the dark spot on the right wing, it appears to have been heated.
Additionally, the hinge, (tiny) pin, and catch are wrong as well. The hinge is post-war, the anemic pin would never stand up to repeated pinning without being bent, and the catch is feeble and not seen on period wings.
The backing is mint, with no signs of wear. I won't say that no WWI wing EVER had an OD wool backing, but this is definitely NOT the norm, and with the other red flags, it does not speak well of the rest of the piece. The way that the backing is sewn (very tightly) prohibits the viewer from seeing the details of construction to the back plate...obviously it was done this way for good reason.