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That WWI German & occasional Austrian Trench Knife Thread

Article about: Hi guys, My latest trench knife :-) ERN mm and imperial stamped . The complete knife is in fair to good condition, with some rust pitting on the blade :-/ Unfortunately the tip is broken ! I

  1. #21

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    Here is another example in my collection.
    It has a blade length of 148 cm, (6") and an overall length of 298 cm (11 3/4")
    Ralph.

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    Searching for anything relating to, Anton Boos, 934 Stamm. Kp. Pz. Erz. Abt. 7, 3 Kompanie, Panzer-Regiment 2, 16th Panzer-Division (My father)

  2. #22

    Default The coveted EB2 Trench Knife Bayonet Combination

    Greetings all,

    This week we have the Ersatz Bayonet #2 or simply the EB2 (Both examples below have blade lengths of 150mm). This classification comes from Anthony Carter’s book German ersatz bayonets. In this book (published in 1976), Carter provided designations to identify most of the known ersatz bayonet variations in order to more easily categorize them for collectors. His EB #s system is still in use today. In the first picture, I have also included an EB47 to give a comparative view of its similar construction and larger size to the two EB2s shown.

    Halasz’ Deutsche Kampfmesser: Band I, indicates that EB2 Bayonets were made by several companies Gottllieb Hammersfahr & Co, F. W. Horster & Co, Robert Klaas & Co, and Franz Koller & Co. That said, I have only encountered three variants of this trench knife bayonet combination. The first is “Koller” marked the second has the “two kissing cranes” logo of Robert Klaas, and the third is completely unmarked. Carter indicates in his book, that the firm of F. Koller was a retailer of knives/bayonets and more than likely the EB2s were manufactured by Robert Klaas for F. Koller to sell commercially.

    Regardless of the "correct" story of these EB2 Trench Knife Bayonet Combinations, they are one of the harder variants to obtain for the collector. You will find far more DEMAG Crank Handled Ersatz Bayonets (AKA EB1s) available than EB2s. I would like to make a request, if you own an EB2 with the logos of either Gottllieb Hammersfahr & Co, or F. W. Horster & Co present; please, post them to add to this reference thread.

    I would also like to personally thank fellow forum member “Adler” who so graciously allowed me to use a picture of his Robert Klaas marked EB2 so as to make this thread more complete (as seen in the second picture). You may enjoy some further views of his outstanding Robert Klaas marked EB2 example here Trench knife/bayonet EB2

    Regards,

    Lance

    P.S. Yes, the artillery shell pictured is engraved as a personalized pre-WWI presentation piece.

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  3. #23

    Default The "other DEMAG Bayonet."

    Greetings all,

    This week we have, “the other DEMAG Bayonet”, this late war model was never officially adopted, but was another private purchase option for German Service-members. There were two models the one I have posted is the Second Model (Blade's length is 155mm). Mine has a name and unit engraved on it (3rd picture from the top) unfortunately due to corrosion it is illegible. You may easily distinguish between the two models, as the First Model does not have the visible ridge in the center of the blade. I have posted a First Model for comparison and the currently available reproduction that is encountered (the last pictured bayonet with the scabbard is the repro, bottom right). These last two images came from Méry, Christian. German combat knives: 1914-1945. Paris: Histoire & Collections, 2011. Méry's book is a very affordable reference and my "go to" book. Finally, please note the different markings on the repro’s blade. Until next week, happy hunting!

    Regards,

    Lance

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  4. #24

    Default Private purchase Eickhorn

    Greetings all,

    This week a simple private purchase trench knife made by Eickhorn, with a blade’s length of 145mm. While made in the style of a bayonet, this model does not have any mortise slot or push button to mount the knife onto a rifle. It just gives the appearance of being a bayonet. This one is quite handle heavy when holding it. Check out the same style of knife on the stormtrooper below.

    Regards,

    Lance

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  5. #25
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    Default

    Very nice. One can practically sense the heft and how overbuilt it is.

  6. #26

    Default Patriotic private purchasse Knives.

    Greetings all,

    Here are two examples of patriotic themed private purchase knives without any visible manufactures’ marks. The one on the left has a blade length of 149mm and the one on the right is 141mm. There were several variations of these flag motifs’ designs available, and most came with stag horn grips. These are not particularly sturdy knives for CQB, but they do have an eye-candy appeal when getting your portrait picture taken or on leave from the front.

    Regards,

    Lance

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  7. #27
    ?

    Default

    IMO these 'Hirschfänger'-inspired knives look very elegant.

  8. #28

    Default “Originality Test”: Gottlieb Hammersfahr Solingen Foche trench knife.

    Greetings all,

    One could debate, “which is the most widely reproduced WWI German trench knife?” The EB1 “Crank Handle” DEMAG Knife Bayonet would definitely come in first for the most widely reproduced/encountered. Though, if purely speaking “trench knife” I would have to back the Gottlieb Hammersfahr Solingen Foche trench knife as being the most common WWI German reproduction available today. The Ern-Rasiermesserfabrik types come in at a close runner up.

    This week, I’d like to take the opportunity to share a simple test to determine if one of the “suspect” Gottlieb Hammersfahr Solingen Foche knives you are reviewing for sale is in fact an “original.” There are a lot of these reproductions being sold by otherwise “reputable” dealers, so it’s worth a moment to see what right should look like. There’s no need for you to take a chance at overspending on a repro, just to have an online expert flame your mistake is there? Then again, so many folks when (after asking) they find out their item is not original they take it as a personal affront or worse, they espouse the merits of the quality of the reproduction. Accept the hobby’s knocks; we all do and then move on all the wiser.

    There are several types of reproductions, but they are all (fortunately) flawed in one manner or another. Instead of looking at the scabbard’s rivets, finish, closure’s snaps, leather’s age, the blade’s thickness, trademark’s fonts, and spelling errors, (all of which are viable methods) I will instead focus on a few traits of the originals. BTW, the original's blade is 152mm in length.

    The do it yourself Gottlieb Hammersfahr Solingen Foche “Originality Test”:

    Imagine you are holding the knife in question in front of you with its point facing perpendicularly away, the blade’s main (longest) edge facing the floor, and the false edge facing the celling. The Gottlieb Hammersfahr Solingen Foche’s logo should be on the blade’s left side and the fraktur (acceptance) mark should be on the blade’s right side. Most importantly, the nine diagonal cuts’ lower edges on the wooden handles’ slabs should angle back towards you. If the diagonal cuts are not exactly nine in number and/or the bottom of the diagonal cuts point away then it is a reproduction (no matter the sellers’ “Estate Find” Bovine Scatology). Oddly, this "diagonal cut angle test" works for most other so styled WWI German trench knives too. That said, notice on the pictured repros (second to last photo) that has the trademark facing the wrong way. On that reproduction, they got the grips' diagonal cuts' count wrong, but they are at least facing the correct orientation.

    For those who have trouble with the above conceptualization drill, I have attached pictures of the three types of reproductions typically encountered below. The upside of all the repros out there is it has kept the value of these particular knives significantly lower than other comparable WWI German trench knife models. This is because most folks (rightly) assume that the vast majority of these knives encountered are usually reproductions. Additionally, there are charlatans who artificially age these knives or pair them with a beat up “original” WWI scabbard in an attempt to obfuscate. Look at the rust’s appearance is it random and is the scabbard “shiny” under the scratched off paint?

    As an aside, you may encounter WWI German trench Knives with “Germany” stamped upon them. This is due to the McKinley Tariff Act of 1890 (Google it). Basically, any knife with this marking (as the original posted shows partially on its ricasso) has been exported for sale to the United States (or other countries) after WWI. The reproductions have as of yet, not bothered to add this marking… so if you do encounter a WWI German trench knife with a “Germany” stamp it is more likely than not an original. Though, as surplus-ed stocks it probably never saw any service with a contemporary WWI German Soldier. That’s just another free tidbit for your collecting rucksack. Until next week.

    Happy Hunting!

    Lance

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    Last edited by militariaone; 02-14-2014 at 02:46 PM.

  9. #29

    Default Rubber/Resin Gottlieb Hammersfahr Solingen Foche trench knife replica

    Greetings all,

    I thought I'd add this photo as it is an rubber/resin replica of the knife in my last post. Apparently made for airsoft and other reenactor living history types. The odd thing, is they chose to replicate one of the reproductions and not an original variant. Either case, thought it would go in well as an addendum to my last post as I failed to mention it. They are available on a certain auction website for $34 USD + shipping. And I am in no way connected with it.

    Regards,

    Lance

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  10. #30

    Default

    Quote by militariaone View Post
    [SIZE=4]Greetings all,

    This week a simple private purchase trench knife made by Eickhorn, with a blade’s length of 145mm. While made in the style of a bayonet, this model does not have any mortise slot or push button to mount the knife onto a rifle. It just gives the appearance of being a bayonet. This one is quite handle heavy when holding it. Check out the same style of knife on the stormtrooper below.

    Regards,

    Lance
    Here is my example of this knife.
    Ralph.
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    Searching for anything relating to, Anton Boos, 934 Stamm. Kp. Pz. Erz. Abt. 7, 3 Kompanie, Panzer-Regiment 2, 16th Panzer-Division (My father)

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