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FAKE World War I Imperial German Flight Badges

Article about: Here is another fake Bavarian Observer badge, but not a very good one. The fixtures on the rear are modern, and the overall detail of the badge is poor. The crown is ill-proportioned and the

  1. #11

    Default Re: FAKE World War I Imperial German Flight Badges

    This one is laughable. These cut out types are appearing more and more on auction sites. Don't fall for it - bogus. This one is pretending to be a product of Paul Meybauer (the distinctive stylized bow was only used by that firm), however, the pin, hinge and catch is not consistent with the style that firm used.

    Not ALL fake flight badges are cast, this one is die stamped, but it is still a fake. No period badge has ever been found attributed or in photos that legitimize this design. The quality (or the lack thereof) mark this as a fake.
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Fake Meybauer Cutout Pilot Badge Obv.JPG 
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Name:	Fake Meybauer Cutout Pilot Badge Rev.JPG 
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    [B][COLOR=Black][SIZE=3][FONT=Book Antiqua][I] Steve[/I][/FONT][/SIZE][/COLOR][/B]

    [CENTER][I][FONT=Georgia][COLOR=orange]Did you ever get the feeling that the world was a tuxedo and you were a pair of brown shoes?[/COLOR][/FONT]
    [/I][/CENTER]
    [B]
    [SIZE=3][COLOR=lemonchiffon][I][CENTER][FONT=Georgia]"Fly on dear boy, from this dark world of strife. On to the promised land to eternal life"[/FONT][/CENTER]
    [/I][/COLOR][/SIZE][/B]

  2. #12

    Default Re: FAKE World War I Imperial German Flight Badges

    This fake is a really bad attempt. It is poor quality cast metal, complete with bogus marks. Sadly, this is still capable of fooling a few collectors who buy without knowing anything about materials, construction, or hallmarks.
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

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    [B][COLOR=Black][SIZE=3][FONT=Book Antiqua][I] Steve[/I][/FONT][/SIZE][/COLOR][/B]

    [CENTER][I][FONT=Georgia][COLOR=orange]Did you ever get the feeling that the world was a tuxedo and you were a pair of brown shoes?[/COLOR][/FONT]
    [/I][/CENTER]
    [B]
    [SIZE=3][COLOR=lemonchiffon][I][CENTER][FONT=Georgia]"Fly on dear boy, from this dark world of strife. On to the promised land to eternal life"[/FONT][/CENTER]
    [/I][/COLOR][/SIZE][/B]

  3. #13
    ?

    Default Re: FAKE World War I Imperial German Flight Badges

    haye steve are there any form of books on the market today that help people learn to spot fakes or is this some thing that can only be learned over time mate ?

  4. #14

    Default Re: FAKE World War I Imperial German Flight Badges

    Steve, excellent thread !...one of the first Imperial badges to ever be copied, even when i started collecting !, so much so, i never bought any....sad really as they are really nice looking things. I would say to potential buyers, use a reputable dealer, do not buy off the auction sites.

  5. #15

    Default Re: FAKE World War I Imperial German Flight Badges

    Thanks for the replies guys. To my knowledge, there is not a comprehensive book that focus on fake Imperial German badges. The above is a result of my studying the way period badges were made (not only aviation) by analyzing examples in hand as well as magnifying period photos of badge in wear. Study of hardware is imperative, but sometimes, this can not be used as a sole indicator of a fake.

    One thing to consider about Imperial German badges is that "late war" badges were as precise, detailed and quality-made as those first produces in 1913. Even the silvered steel badges first issued are highly detailed and of superior quality. I know of no original aviation badge that was cast or made from any form of pot metal. Like US Air Service pilots, German aviators were a cut above and wanted the very embodiment of their status to reflect that in quality.

    I will expand more as this thread develops on other characteristics of flight badges that will help to detect forgeries.
    [B][COLOR=Black][SIZE=3][FONT=Book Antiqua][I] Steve[/I][/FONT][/SIZE][/COLOR][/B]

    [CENTER][I][FONT=Georgia][COLOR=orange]Did you ever get the feeling that the world was a tuxedo and you were a pair of brown shoes?[/COLOR][/FONT]
    [/I][/CENTER]
    [B]
    [SIZE=3][COLOR=lemonchiffon][I][CENTER][FONT=Georgia]"Fly on dear boy, from this dark world of strife. On to the promised land to eternal life"[/FONT][/CENTER]
    [/I][/COLOR][/SIZE][/B]

  6. #16

    Default Re: FAKE World War I Imperial German Flight Badges

    Kudos for a great thread,,,waiting anxiously for more postings on this,,,Robert

  7. #17

    Default Re: FAKE World War I Imperial German Flight Badges

    Quote by Steven M View Post
    This first group of badges posted all have the same thing in common, a small "tick" mark or flaw on the reverse, lower right side of the crown well.

    Die flaws did, and do exist even today, however, when you see the same mark in the same place on various styles of badges, AND on different makers...something isn't right.

    Is it possible that a period original badge did possess this mark, and one of them was used to make forgeries - yes...or perhaps this mark may be the result of an oversight of the faker when creating dies.

    I have personally observed this mark on Meybauer, Carl Poellath, Karl Poellath, and CE Juncker. It is found on not only Prussian badges, but also on Bavarian badges in Pilot, Retired Pilot, Aerial Gunner, Sea Pilot, Land Pilot, Observer grades AND the fantasy "Imperial German Balloon Badge". Do the math...

    As a point of reference, I am posting a close shot of this flaw mark. Perhaps, some have not heard of this before or seen the mark, so here is a visual:

    Steve,
    Excellent site.
    I would also like to point out the hinge well. Notice the shallow half moon shape. All the original badges that I have seen have a deep well. This style pictured above is a dead give away. Also on your bavarian badge, notice the shallow well in the half moon shape. All the original bavarian badges that I have encountered the hinge well is shaped like a bakers hat rather than a half moon and is deep not flat like this. Another thing that you touched on is the use of the Crown on the Junkers badges. Every attributed pilots badge that I have had the pleasure to see does not have the crown in the Junkers logo.
    Terry

  8. #18

    Default Re: FAKE World War I Imperial German Flight Badges

    Quote by hawk3370 View Post
    Steve,
    Excellent site.
    I would also like to point out the hinge well. Notice the shallow half moon shape. All the original badges that I have seen have a deep well. This style pictured above is a dead give away. Also on your bavarian badge, notice the shallow well in the half moon shape. All the original bavarian badges that I have encountered the hinge well is shaped like a bakers hat rather than a half moon and is deep not flat like this. Another thing that you touched on is the use of the Crown on the Junkers badges. Every attributed pilots badge that I have had the pleasure to see does not have the crown in the Junkers logo.
    Terry
    Excellent point Major. Here is a reference photo of a GOOD badge that illustrates what you pointed out above.
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    [B][COLOR=Black][SIZE=3][FONT=Book Antiqua][I] Steve[/I][/FONT][/SIZE][/COLOR][/B]

    [CENTER][I][FONT=Georgia][COLOR=orange]Did you ever get the feeling that the world was a tuxedo and you were a pair of brown shoes?[/COLOR][/FONT]
    [/I][/CENTER]
    [B]
    [SIZE=3][COLOR=lemonchiffon][I][CENTER][FONT=Georgia]"Fly on dear boy, from this dark world of strife. On to the promised land to eternal life"[/FONT][/CENTER]
    [/I][/COLOR][/SIZE][/B]

  9. #19

    Default Re: FAKE World War I Imperial German Flight Badges

    Quote by Steven M View Post
    Here is a badge that is total fantasy, as in - never existed. This is a supposed Balloon Badge. Note the flaw mark on the reverse.
    Ouch!!! Some poor soul just "won" this at auction for $1650.00...
    [B][COLOR=Black][SIZE=3][FONT=Book Antiqua][I] Steve[/I][/FONT][/SIZE][/COLOR][/B]

    [CENTER][I][FONT=Georgia][COLOR=orange]Did you ever get the feeling that the world was a tuxedo and you were a pair of brown shoes?[/COLOR][/FONT]
    [/I][/CENTER]
    [B]
    [SIZE=3][COLOR=lemonchiffon][I][CENTER][FONT=Georgia]"Fly on dear boy, from this dark world of strife. On to the promised land to eternal life"[/FONT][/CENTER]
    [/I][/COLOR][/SIZE][/B]

  10. #20

    Default Re: FAKE World War I Imperial German Flight Badges

    Here are two more fakes pretending to be made by the firm of Paul Meybauer. Both are very bad castings in cheap metal. The first badge features a poor attempt at recreating the characteristic "coke bottle" shaped tapered pin...not even close.

    The second one is even worse than the first badge. Everything about it is wrong. The ONLY thing both of these badges have that is close to being of the original style, is the bow. As mentioned before, this style of bow was only used by Meybauer.
    Click to enlarge the picture Click to enlarge the picture Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Meybauer Cast Fake Obv..jpg 
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    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Meybauer Cast Fake 2 Obv..jpg 
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Name:	Meybauer Cast Fake 2 Rev..jpg 
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    [B][COLOR=Black][SIZE=3][FONT=Book Antiqua][I] Steve[/I][/FONT][/SIZE][/COLOR][/B]

    [CENTER][I][FONT=Georgia][COLOR=orange]Did you ever get the feeling that the world was a tuxedo and you were a pair of brown shoes?[/COLOR][/FONT]
    [/I][/CENTER]
    [B]
    [SIZE=3][COLOR=lemonchiffon][I][CENTER][FONT=Georgia]"Fly on dear boy, from this dark world of strife. On to the promised land to eternal life"[/FONT][/CENTER]
    [/I][/COLOR][/SIZE][/B]

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