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WWII German Combination Tool Trench Knife variants

Article about: Greetings all, Here are several examples of WWII German made tool knives or combination fighting knives. Puma and at least one other company (trade mark “S”) made these variants. The handles

  1. #21

    Default Puma made PATRONENHEBER MG 34 variant.

    Greetings all,

    First, I’d like to thank forum member “Antiquebill” for allowing me to purchase the next variation shown on this thread. Here is his original post How rare is a Puma Boot Knife marked Patronenheber MG 34? As fellow collector and forum member “Reibert” discussed earlier in post #7 this (below) variation is the PATRONENHEBER MG 34 “Cartridge Lifter” marked Puma made variant. As you can see, it has a specific tool for pulling stuck 7.92mm cartridges from an MG 34’s barrel. It is not a ruptured cartridge removal tool (one type of ruptured cartridge removal tool is actually pictured acting as the extracted cartridge in the second picture below). These knives were not issued kit with the MG 34, but were private purchase affairs. Fun fact: the tool works just as well on MG 42’s barrels as well (I’ve checked).

    This is the only one of these particular variants I have ever viewed; as such, variant-wise it would appear they were not that popular. Perhaps, as one loses the standard screw driver’s bit with this tool’s addition/selection most customers thought a screw driver was of more use. If you were not assigned to an MG 34/42's crew, that is most assuredly the case.



    Double click on images to enlarge.
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    Below as compared with the other “Puma made” variant shown in post #4 (PATRONENHEBER MG 34 variant is the top knife).
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    And finally, all of variants together (PATRONENHEBER MG 34 variant is now the bottom knife)
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    Last edited by militariaone; 08-10-2016 at 10:33 AM.

  2. #22

    Default Phenolic plastic gripped "S" marked knife variant.

    Greetings all,

    For your perusal, an “S” marked variant with a phenolic plastic or micarta plastic handles. I wished to post it with the others in this thread. While I appreciate the craftsmanship of this knife’s handles, I do not believe this was how this knife left the factory when it was originally made.

    I believe this knife was re-handled post-WWII when (perhaps) the original wooden slab grips cracked, which is a problem when these knives are dropped on a hard surface (please, don’t ask how I know that). There are four reasons why I believe the grips have been replaced. The first, the knife’s metal surfaces have been mechanically buffed (its metal is shiny even in the nooks/crannies covered by the handles; not something you ever see on other examples, but something that you would do if you had it disassembled for repair in order to remove corrosion/staining). Secondly, when the knife was reassembled they peened the brass retaining pins so tightly it takes a pair of plyers to open up any of the tools (it would have never left the factory with that noticeable fault, unless ripping out your finger's nails was their true intent). The third reason, notice that there is no finger groove molded in to assist with pulling out the leather punch (compare the circled areas in the top of image #3) again, not something you’d see omitted on other factory finished models. And last, is the flattening out of the rivets on the backside of the scabbard’s belt retention clip (see an unaltered scabbard pictured next to it for comparison in the bottom of image #3 ) this was most likely done to tighten up the wobble these clips are prone to after long-periods of use. This scabbard belt clip’s tightening up, would have been something (logically) done in concert with getting a new replacement grip made.

    Now, who would put that time and effort into refurbing a knife with broken wooden handles? My supposition would be any number of armorers located in post-WWII Eastern-European countries. The knife’s main blade still functions fine, so why throw it away and too, these were not affluent times; well-made equipment was hard to come by.

    The grips possess that layered material effect you typically see when you look at British No. 7 Land Service Bayonets’ handles, but with a slightly tighter mesh and not so red colored (see Ade’s post here British No7 MkI Land Service Bayonet). During the 50s & 60s, the Soviets and their satellite countries used similar phenolic plastic’s materials for AK-47 Bayonets’. So, my guess is someone with time, some skill, and the required materials brought this knife back to life by cleaning, re-handling, and tightening up the scabbard’s wobble, so it could be carried and used once again.

    Whatever the truth may be, whomever made the handles did a pretty decent job of it (except for the impairment of the handle tools’ use). Notice too, how the handles are wasp-waisted and this effect enables a very comfortable grip. OK, I’m done “guessing” about this example, just enjoy another oddball variant, I assure you I do.



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    Above is a comparison view of the phenolic plastic gripped "S" marked variant (top) & the standard wooden handled "S" marked variant.
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    Above is a nice view of the "S" markings & the layer/grain evident in the phenolic plastic gripped variant.
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    Above note the circled differences/points of interest mentioned earlier in the text.
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    Above the standard family portrait where all the variants are exhibited together.

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