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1943 British machete, US made

Article about: I found this 1943 dated British machete a few days ago in a small junkshop. It is in pretty good condition with a solid handle and some remains of green paint, and actually quite sharp. But

  1. #1

    Default 1943 British machete, US made

    I found this 1943 dated British machete a few days ago in a small junkshop. It is in pretty good condition with a solid handle and some remains of green paint, and actually quite sharp. But it also had a few areas of rust (the cancerous sort) so I decided to clean the blade.

    The scabbard was dirty with the seam burst open around the tip and partway on the back, and the hanger had been cut off. After I washed it with some mild handsoap and a nailbrush and let it dry overnight, it turned out the leather is actually in a very decent condition and I started treating it with a good quality leather cream.

    Some pics as I got the set:

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    I've been wanting to try electrolysis to clean rusty metal for a while now, and this seemed to be a good opportunity to try it out. So in the bucket it went. The brownish tint actually comes from the dissolved rust:

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    After a total of about 4 1/2 hours in the solution most of the rust and paint was gone. After a quick rinse I used some sandpaper for the last spots, then I finished it with some steel wool, and now it looks like this:

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    I think it came out quite good. I'll preserve it by wiping it with some WD40 or some other oil.

    As for the scabbard, I think I will remove the 3 rivets that are holding the remains of the hanger and make a new one from a suitable piece of leather that I'll then pop-rivet back in place. I intend to actually use this set for re-enactment and the split seam doesn't affect the usability. Quite happy with it, for a decent price.

  2. #2
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    Nice. Rich A. in Pa.
    1969 Shelby GT-500 King of the Road
    Knowledge is power, guard it well.

  3. #3

    Default

    Nice Collins - turned out great after the treatment.........
    Regards,


    Steve.

  4. #4

    Default

    Thanks for your comments. I'm quite pleased on how it turned out and I will use electrolysis more often when needed now. It's very cheap and won't touch good metal.

  5. #5
    CBH
    CBH is offline
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    I have a very similar or the same set up , US machete in a British sheath . If I have the time I'll take a photo , nice job you did .

  6. #6

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    Thanks! I assume these were made in the US by Collins under British contract or for Lend-Lease. I have another 1940 dated Collins that came in a 1943 dated Canadian scabbard.

  7. #7
    CBH
    CBH is offline
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    Here is a couple shots of mine , the blade has been ground down to thin out and lighten the blade . The sheath is marked Ottawa 1942 with black over paint with some green showing , blade is 1940 .
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  8. #8

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    That's a great example! Here is my other Collins, dated 1940. The finish of the blade is as I found it, but unfortunately a piece of one of the plastic grips has broken off. The scabbard is complete & clearly marked, but fragile and shows signs of 'red rot' setting in.

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  9. #9
    CBH
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    Nice one you have there , when I looked on the face of the sheath ( where yours is marked ) there is a C with /l\ stamp . As stated before this must be a Lean Lease item .
    Cheers Chris

  10. #10

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    I think Lend-Lease only applies to objects made in the US to be supplied to the British/Commonwealth, like the machete itself. The C /|\ stamp on the scabbard would indicate it was accepted by the Canadian military (and possibly then supplied to Great Britain?). I couldn't find any other stamps on my scabbard.

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