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Recently I also picked up an RP marked commercial bayo attached to a Gewehr fur DRP 1934 dated DRP marked rifle. I havent yet compared it to the information in Georges' excellent reference. just another small research project. they are piling up.

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Deutsche Reichspost marked rifles and bayonets are rare enough by themselves. But to acquire a rifle/bayonet grouping would be a very desirable acquisition not often seen.

As I mentioned earlier period photographs show Leibstandarte (LAH) troops with the 98K style bayonets, and there are others post 1938 with SS troops using unmodified Czech rifles and unblued full muzzle ringed bayonets. This weekend I found again some notations regarding the negotiation between Himmler and the OKW as regards arms and equipment for the SS. Of particular interest were statements that with the notable exception of Leibstandarte (LAH) the balance of SS combat troops were equipped primarily with captured ex-Czech weapons that generated a secret “Bericht über die tschechischen Waffen beim Kampfeinsatz,” 5.8. 1940, (Geheim) , RFSS/T-175, 104/2626129ff” regarding their use.

Anyone have additional comments or insight on this - which apparently was directly from from the Reichsführer-SS himself? FP

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FROGPRINCE,

I just got back from a business trip to Saudi Arabia and I am catching up on E-mails. The information that you just posted about Czech weapons being used by the SS is very interesting.
I have quite a few SS marked VZ-24 bayonets:some with rings, some without, and even bayonets with WA.

Richard K

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Frogprince,

I was very fortunate indeed to find the rifle/bayo combination. However, the bayo numbers do not match the last 4 digits of the rifle. Not certain they should.

The use of captured Czech and Polish equipment by the SS has been documented in several references. It is also evidenced from period photos. However, evidence of ownership does not necessarily equate to the SS marking such equipment with deathsheads. The fact that muzzle rings, in some cases, were left intact speaks to the urgent need for such equipment. Such urgent need argues against rework and/or marking which would serve no functional purpose and would otherwise delay issue.

It is clear that throughout its history LAH received priority for weapons and equipment allocations. I have never seen a period photo of pre-war LAH personnel with other than German produced 98 variations.

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SCOTT,

If the SS was in such a hurry to get weapons, and in this case bayonets, why did they rework them at all. All of my SS VZ-24 bayonets have the grips reworked, some of the bayonets are reblued, some have the muzzle rings cut off and others do not. In addition there are SS property markings on all of the bayonets that I have. All of the bayonets are dated by the SS rework houses.

Richard Kuchta

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Scott, The rifle/bayonet numbers not being matched would not particularly bother me as I don’t know if that particularly was an issue for the Germans on the nonmilitary side, and it certainly was not one for the military itself. It should however I think have the style DRP marking and grips commensurate with the time the rifle was made.

I agree that urgency was a very significant consideration. From the photographs of the captured bayonets I earlier made reference to they show no evidence of any alterations, and appear to be as originally manufactured. I think simple logic itself tells you that if they had to use captured weapons at all instead of German arms they were having significant problems - as confirmed by German sources of the problems the SS encountered in supplying itself.

Richard, Glad you are back safely. As regards the VZ24 bayonets (just like any other bayonet) without seeing them as a group there is IMHO not an unquestionable basis for making either an independent or collective evaluation as to their provenance. Either for a best or worst case scenario.

And having said that: Waffenamted examples obviously indicate prior involvement of the Heereswaffenamt and timing. Which do bring some other issues into play. The (more or less cosmetically) reworked VZ24 bayonets as a group themselves can be very “iffy” as some were done after the war and others not necessarily by the Germans. And timing and the very large variations in the way the conversions were done is also a factor. There are some additional issues as well not the least of which is the seeming lack of pictures of SS troops carrying the later versions of the VZ24. So assuming for the purpose of discussion all is good - would the conversions have been for the SS itself or under contract for the Army/Wehrmacht?

But like anything else sight unseen it’s still a guessing game because there are also some Czech bayonets out there that should never have had any possible connection to the SS. Regards to All, FP

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I would be very interested to see the czechoslovakian Vz.24 bayonets with ss marking, i dont believe that in both plants of Zbrojovka Brno were produced bayonets so marked, only possibility is a rework in SS field armory and adding of similar marking to these pieces. The new blueing and reworking of grips must be detailed examined. I collect 20 years here in this area, but never see so marked piece. I assume that in 1939/40 period the majority of rifles were used as it was, later when enough rifles were avialable, i tippe before Soviet campaign, they started upgrading to german standards. best regards,Andy
PS.Richard, it would be great see the details of Your SS Vz.24 bayonets on BCN online page or , You could it send it to FP or my email for comparation Blazicek@infostat.sk

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FP,
Agreed. In some ways I would be more concerned if the the RP bayo did match.

You also make some great observations on the VZ bayos. There is absolutely no legitimate reason I can conceive of for the existance of period reworked/refurbished SS marked bayos with retention of the muzzle ring. IMO-refurbishing the rest of the assembly and retaining the muzzle ring is inconsistent with all logic and standards involved in SS arms reworks of the period. I would also be very concerned with typical WaA's appearing on SS marked bayos.

AndyB,
You make excellent points as well. That a 20 year CZ bayo collector from CZ has never seen an SS marked bayo sounds like a huge red flag to me. It is difficult to accept that all the SS marked CZ bayos are here in the US.

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SCOTT,

Your opinions on VZ-24 SS bayonets are appreciated. As usual, they are opinions based only on your feelings and not facts. I guess VZ-24 SS marked rifles do not exist either. How about Czech field glasses that have SS property marks on them, do they exist?

I can not wait to share the pictures of these SS bayonets with all of the BCN members. Later this year I plan to start getting the documentation together for a publication.

Just because an item has not bee seen does not mean that it does not exist. Kelly Hicks new book on SS Helmets is a fine example of extremely rare SS Helmets being shown for the first time. When I was collecting SS Helmets over 30 years ago, some of those now shown SS helmets were not even known to exist. The same goes for the variations of SS Decals.

Like rare SS Helmets, SS Bayonets go for high prices. A complete matching bayonet & scabbard with SS frog will trade for more than a chained SS Dagger. There are thousands of chained SS Daggers but only a few surviving SS Bayonets.If you have money, you can buy a Chained SS Dagger or SS Rifle any time you want. You can not say that about SS Bayonets.
How many real etched, SS KS/98 Bayonets exist? Only about 3 that I know of and the major one is in my collection. The SS Bayonet I am refering to is the one that was in Techt's book on engraved bayonets.

Scott, I am not the only person collecting SS bayonets. These bayonets reside in alot of advanced collections. There are BCN members that have them in their collections also.

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SCOTT

In regards to your posting concerning your knowledge and expertise about SS rifles, I did state that you do have a vast knowledge of SS Rifles and their markings. An example is the runes 01, runes 2, etc. I have several bayonets marked with runes 2. As far as I can tell, it looks like the same stamp that was used on the rifles to mark runes 2. You are the only person that I know of that has deciphered these particular SS markings. When you support your statements with facts, you show your expertise.
However, when you make a lot of the statements that you do concerning or alluding to that SS Bayonets that are marked bring up a red flag and you do not feel good about them is your opinion and not based upon any facts by you. I respect your opinion and everyone is entitled to their opinion. However in collecting, the items speak for themselves, facts are facts, you have never seen any of my SS bayonets.

You mention that my main source of SS bayonets is the mystery millionaire. You also mention that anything that comes from this source should be treated with suspicion and be questioned. However, when MH is alluded to, that does not set well with you. I shall not mention MH again in any of my postings because it does not belong in the forum because it does not contribute to the transfer of knowledge in our collecting field.
As to where my collection came from,it came from all over the US. I never bought an SS Bayonet in Europe, but I did talk to former SS men while on business trips in Europe. Talk to a former SS man and see what he has to say about SS/TV & SS/VT equipment being property marked.
I have bought 7 SS Bayonets from the Secret Millionaire. I would buy more except that he will not separate the remaining bayonets from the rifles.
This forum is to promote our collecting hobby and exchange information. As I said before, everyone is entitled to their own opinion on any of the posted subjects. The SS Bayonets speak for themselves.

Richard Kuchta

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The DRP bayonets were consecutively numbered into at least the 12 thousand block (Andy I’m sure has the latest information) and show mid-war finishing standards. A rifle/bayonet matching serial number combination would have personally caused me to look at them both very, very, closely myself.

I have one or two period German rework specification sheets showing what was acceptable with conversions for captured bayonets. But most, most, unfortunately they are not for the ones under discussion. To be reworked - especially to the level of some of them - they had to be either be taken away from troops in the field or pulled from storage. And if taken away from troops in the field the troops were almost certainly given 98K bayonets as replacements.

As regards the bayonets that still have their muzzle rings intact (and some other reworks which are really a multifaceted topic unto themselves) the seeming contradictions with some of the modified Vz.24 bayonets has puzzled me for years. Circa 1941 the CZ factory at Bystrica introduced the first of the OEM Czech bayonets that were blued and made without muzzle rings. So it makes sense that if they were going to refurbish bayonets - that all of them would have had the muzzle rings cut off/removed.

However, that is not always the case. And I have seen a fair number of blued/refurbished Vz.24 bayonets with the muzzle rings still completely intact. * Note: An intact muzzle ring on a CZ/Romanian bayonet for example does make sense - Romanians using a very interesting conglomeration of bayonets from various sources and some have been passed off as German conversions. Some ex-Romanian bayonets were originally German, so they all have to be looked at very closely, and I am not saying that having a muzzle ring intact necessarily makes a Vz.24 bayonet ex-Romanian. As I also have Waffenamted CZ/German bayonets with muzzle rings fully intact using the original phosphate/bright finish of the Czech originals. So the presence of Waffenamts might or might not be a problem with reworked CZ bayonets depending on who did the refurbishing/conversion.

One of the other things that puzzled me in the population of reworked bayonets were the Waffenamted 1942 dated CZ bayonets some of which were of fairly late manufacture in 1942. They very obviously were made w/o muzzle rings. So why were 1942 dated bayonets w/o muzzle rings refurbished/converted? The reason being because the Germans quit systematically refurbishing their 98K bayonets in 1941. So why did they rework the CZ bayonets (especially the late 1942 examples) well into 1942 and possibly later? There are a couple of other factors involved as well, which is why I like to look at the bayonets very closely, and am sometimes reluctant to make snap judgments without a close inspection first.

There is no question that various elements of the SS were issued captured Czech weapons. That is supported by both photographs and period documents. Or that some SS military type items had RZM markings. Or other types of markings. Or that a very large number of “SS” items in collections old and new are fakes. Rifles, pistols, bayonets, swords, daggers, helmets, field gear, fantasy items, other misc. items, whatever.

I completely agree that “we ain't seen them all yet” as I am still finding and seeing things that others have found that are or were unknown. Finding something new is one of the joys of collecting. But there is a dark side as well. Because altering an original item or creating one can be so profitable - fake SS items go back at least 40 years or more with books on fakes being published as early as the 1960’s.

While fakes were not uncommon in early books on German militaria, I am sorry to say that fakes and bad information have gotten into many other books including some of the latest ones. Some of the information is misstated and probably based on ignorance. Other information is simply flat wrong with fakes or altered items being presented as original period items often based on the owner’s opinion or what he was told with no basis in fact. For example BBOTW has some very good information in it. But it also has some obvious fakes and misinformation as well, as do other books on Third Reich militaria.

Sorry for the length, but the discussion has touched on a number of issues. FP


(Below: A circa 1941 Bystrica manufactured example w/o muzzle ring.)

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A circa 1940 Bystrica manufactured example with muzzle ring.

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My mistake. The first bayonet is actually a 1942 dated example from Brno. Except for the markings, the bayonets from Bystrica and Brno are basically identical in outward appearance, FP

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FROGPRINCE

Extremely interesting and informative post. As always.

Richard Kuchta

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Hello FP, great thanks for attaching of the super nice items, You was direct in plant for this 2 pieces?,haha. I could never find here so nice pieces. Unfortunally they dont exist good sources from the war period, from both plants of Zbrojovka. But i believe that in Povazska Bystrica were switched from ring to without barrel ring crosspiece in period of 1941. best regards,Andy

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Excellent comments and insight on CZ bayos! One of the issues which clouds the rework aspect of CZ bayos is determining if items were reworked wartime, postwar or both.

Richard,

It appears that you interpret all of my comments on this subject as opinions while all of your comments are interpreted as facts. Rather inconguous don't you think?

Lets clarify things. Unless we were present to see an item produced and marked there can be no smoking gun in terms of evidence. Therefore, everything we think and say relative to an items authenticity is based upon opinion. These opinions are based upon what we have learned through years of study and collecting the sum of which produces a preponderance of evidence. We must rely upon our experience but must temper opinions with an understanding that not every variation has likely been discovered. Too my knowledge, no period documentation has been found which describes SS marking standards or rework standards. Regardless, if such docs were discovered and authenticated, it would not be evidence that a specific item was period SS marked or reworked. As with many other collectibles of the period, such documentation may only serve as the basis for creating more accurate fakes.

You previously commented to the effect that the deathsheads found on SS marked rifles are the same as those found on SS marked bayonets. If this is accurate then knowledge of the deathshead markings on rifles translates to knowledge of the deathshead markings found on bayos. My comments on the negative aspects of SS bayonets, which I have examined in person or viewed on-line, is based primarily (though not exclusively) upon my dislike of their deathshead markings. The fact is that these markings have IMO not compared favorably to deathsheads found on legitimate SS marked rifles.

You make frequent statements that are focused on the value of SS bayonets vs. other SS collectibles. Strictly opinion. However, these comments suggest that one of the purposes of your collecting and research on this subject is to drive prices. Is this correct? Except to illustrate a motive for fraud - there is no educational purpose in discussing value.

I agree - the MH subject does not belong on the forum. However, the "secret millionaire" collection is extremely relevant to this subject for three reasons. The first reason is because, as the story goes, this collection was allegedly ALL obtained from veterans who had liberated a concentration camp/camps. If this story is accurate, this collection represents an excellent primary source of data on SS weapons with provenance. The second reason is because of the vast quantities of approx. 100 SS marked weapons, which allegedly reside or have resided in this collection. This is significant because it would represent the single largest collection of SS weapons with provenance. The third reason is because I have personally inspected rifles from this collection and consider all of them very poor frauds. I have detailed data and some pictures of other rifles obtained from this collection. I consider these rifles fraudulent too. Suffice it to say, if my evaluation is completely or even partially correct the complete "secret millionaire" story and the credibility of all items in the subject collection folds like a house of cards. Are you suggesting that my evaluations of the subject rifles are 100% incorrect? If so, please provide evidence to support your position. If not, how would you reconcile even one fraud in this all vet obtained SS weapons collection? Moreover, how would fraud identified in this collection impact the authenticity of the "7" SS marked bayos you have obtained from this source? How is this collection and its associated issues not relevant? Please explain.

Scott

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SCOTT,

You say that my statements on SS bayonets are based on opinions? Wrong!!!!!! My statements are based on actual bayonets. I keep asking you what SS bayonets have you seen and analysed and please provide a description of them.

In regards to your statement that the secret millionaire got all of his collection from concentration camps is absurd. Where do you get this stuff from?

Your statement that my motive for research on SS bayonets is to drive the prices up and illustrates a motive for fraud is as unprofessional and biased as are all of your remarks. This forum is to exchange information and promote the collecting hobby. You have brought nothing to this forum table concerning SS bayonets but your negative feelings and opinions.
What don't you understand about an SS Bayonet being as valuable as an SS Dagger???? Do you understand the laws of supply & demand????
Enough said.

Richard Kuchta

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hello members, i hope that the interesting discussion here goes not to a splutter, i would be happy when Richard K. could provide to secured area a one detailed Vz.24 piece marked with SS marking, i am BCN member from 1999, and many members knows me that i am involved in research about slovak produced bajonets. Could You send pictures to FP or to me? It would be great to look to it, or You will made a small book about it? Thanks Andy from Slovakia

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Put me down for a book as well

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Andy,

I shall get some pictures of the SS VZ-24 bayonets and send them to Frogprince who will hopefully be able to process them and send them on to you.

Richard Kuchta

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Richard,
I will be happy to process and send to Andy any pictures that you send me whenever the opportunity arises.
FP

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FROGPRINCE,

I shall contact my friend this weekend and see if she can make time available to take the pictures.

Thanks for your help.

Richard Kuchta

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FROGPRINCE & ANDY

We took pictures of 9 different SS VZ-24 bayonets today and sent them on to you FROGPRINCE. Please look everything over and send a copy to ANDY. Please get back in touch with me on my home E-mail.

Richard Kuchta

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Thanks Richard very much for Your cooperation, i will send You comments ,when i get the pictures. Thanks for Your help,best regards,Andy

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Richard,
I have the images, but have to go back and make sure they downloaded properly in case I missed something. I’m not much of a photographer myself and extend my compliments to whomever took the images being much better than I usually take.

Before sending the information to Andy I would like to group the images a little differently by chronology. And lighten up a couple of them where they might be a little dark (lighting and distance are my own biggest problems with digital photography).

I will contact you and may want some additional information especially as regards the dates of some. I may already have the information, but did not see it in my quick examination as I downloaded some of the images. With some Czech bayonets it’s stamped on the bottom side of the handle between the grip plates instead of being on the blade. Pictures are always preferable - but I am pretty familiar with CZ bayonets so a description of what is there (if anything) should suffice without having to take additional images.

Also, I really do appreciate the extra effort you have made, and am sure that Andy will as well.
Best Regards, FP

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Richard,

Let me repeat – “Unless we were present to see an item produced and marked there can be no smoking gun in terms of evidence. Therefore, everything we think and say relative to an items authenticity is based upon opinion.” As I made clear by using the word “we” this comment applies equally to your knowledge of SS bayos and my knowledge of SS rifles. That an object exists is not, in and of itself, evidence that the subject item is authentic.

I also stated - “You make frequent statements that are focused on the value of SS bayonets vs. other SS collectibles. Strictly opinion. However, these comments suggest that one of the purposes of your collecting and research on this subject is to drive prices. Is this correct? Except to illustrate a motive for fraud - there is no educational purpose in discussing value.” The first point of this comment is that you are the person who frequently brings up the subject of value. To my knowledge, no one else has except in response to your comments. The second point of my comment is to identify value as subjective. The third point of my comment is to point out that discussion of value serves no educational purpose except to illustrate a motive for fraud.

I can’t imagine how a reasonable person with normal reading and information processing skills could twist my previous comments into your interpretation? They are not complex and are rather simple to understand.

I have data on most every SS marked bayo I have personally examined or have seen online. What are you seeking in terms of data and what is the point of your question? Some of them are yours so I am unlear as to what this will accomplish.

My comments about the KZ provenance of the “secret millionaire” collection came from you directly in several conversations, the collector/victim whose fraudulent SS marked G/K98s I examined last summer, and V the conduit for the garbage. Like most fantasy characters in comic books and movies, the identity of the “secret millionaire” has remained secret to everyone else I know in the hobby. The bottom line is that every SS marked rifle I have examined from the “secret millionaire” collection, in person or through detailed pictures and data, is IMO fraudulent. Therefore, any other item from this collection should be viewed with great skepticism. I guess if you believe the words you previously wrote about my expertise on SS rifles you need to be concerned. Of course this may be a convenient time to retract your comments.

It is interesting to note that you conclude your as always emotional response with another discussion of value. Who cares? Completely irrelevant from an educational standpoint.


Scott

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SCOTT,

In regards to the statement that I am driving the prices up on SS bayonets you make no sense. I have only sold 2 SS bayonets since I have been collecting them and I sold them to your associate who I said I would not mention his name. The prices that I pay are set by the people selling the bayonets and they are knowledgeable of their value. Collectors should be aware of the value of bayonets. You paid way over value for the SS bayonet that you bought. It was reblued and did not have the original scabbard or frog. Did you drive the price up???

You are constantly playing with the word fraud. You are very familiar with the term. Does it have anything to do with one of your associates buying a complete armorer's chest of 98K rifle parts? Where did they go?

You statement that something can not be deemed real and or authentic unless you were there to see it made is absurd.

Richard Kuchta

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Richard,

You are correct - a primary focus of my profession for over 20 years was fruad detection, prevention and investigation. So I know of what I speak when I use the term and have not applied it incorrectly in this case.

Reference your constant need to discuss values - my point is very simple. There is absolutley no educational value in discussing value. It is irrelevant to the education process except if buying or selling.

Reference the SS marked bayo I purchased at SOS last year - I agree the value was a stretch and I have never been particularly thrilled with it. However, afterwards many BCNrs indicated either that it was a steal or they wished they had bought it. As I recall one of those people was our moderator. I never really discussed the item or value after SOS with anyone but you. At that time you made a strong cash offer, which I turned down indicating that it would only be available in trade towards a legitimate SS rifle. Since you didnt own one of those, the point was moot. It appears that you have now found it convenient to forget about these facts. Suffice to say your actions were not those of someone who previously knew of the subject bayo or disagreed with its merits.

Since you have persisted in discussing my friend with accusations and inferences about credibility, I feel it appropriate to involve him. I will forward all discussion links to him so that he can take appropriate action.

Scott

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SCOTT,

You say that there is no educational value in knowing the value of a bayonet. I disagree. The collector should know as much about the item that he is collecting and that includes the value. First of all, why would you not want to know the fair value of a bayonet. Is it for the reason that you think that it is OK to way overpay for a bayonet or an item that you want to acquire? Or is it that a collector should not know the value of his item so that he can sell it below the established fair market value? The forum is set up to exchange knowledge and ideas. You are saying that it is irrevalent till you are buying or selling to obtain this knowledge. You are way too late at this point.

Richard Kuchta

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Richard,

I stand by my comments regarding the discussion of value. If the purpose of a thread is to examine the history, production methods, characteristics, or to determine the authenticity of an item - value is irrelevant. If the purpose of a thread is to discuss purchase/sale, insurance coverage or fraud motives - value is relevant. Why is this point so difficult for you to comprehend?

Suggesting that dishonest motivations are behind my position on discussing value are without merit and evidence. Aside from personal ethical issues, don’t you think it a bit illogical that I would try to manipulate price on a commodity (i.e. SS marked bayos), which I do not believe are authentic?

Your responses continue to embarrass yourself and discredit your position. I suggest we move forward and discuss more substantive things such as deathshead variations, which you have previously posted as authentic and/or any retractions on previous comments you have made.

Scott

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Scott

You are entitled to your opinions. I agree it is time to move on.

What are you bringing to the forum to discuss?

Would you members of the forum like me to put up the triple etched HEINZ BRENNER bayonet for review and discussion. This was the bayonet that was in German Etched Dress Bayonets by our Mr. Wayne Techet. Please indicate if you want to see it because I will have to get the photos takn and processed.

Richard Kuchta

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Richard,

I have a question to ask before we get into analyzing some deathshead information you previously provided in the thread 'Do You Own a SS Combat Bayonet'. For sake of clarification were any of the pictures provided copied directly from 'BBOTW' or Senich or are you claiming that all were taken from items in your collection?

Scott

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SCOTT,

First of all why do you want to know? What are we going to learn about bayonets?

Richard Kuchta

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Richard,

You posted or had the subject pictures posted as examples of deathsheads which may appear on SS marked bayos. As such the question directly relates to the subject. Therefore, the source of the photos seems pretty germane.

Are you suggesting that all types of deathsheads, which you consider legitimate should appear on SS marked bayos? How long do you believe the SS marked bayos?

Scott

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SCOTT,

Those are some good questions. I have sent Frogprince pictures of 9 VZ-24 bayonets. The SS have dated these bayonets and the dates fall into 3 groups: 1939, 1940, & 1941. I would believe that the last deathead markings would be 1941 for the VZ-24 bayonets. I know that deathead markings on 84/98s stopped much earlier. I would need some help from the experts determining the cut off dates on the 84/98s.

As for the Deathead marks on the bayonets, there are deatheads with geometry that you do not see on the rifles. The 98/05 deatheads are a very early type deathead that can be found on the SS/VT collartabs and on the SS side rail scopes.
Other deatheads are similiar to deatheads found on rifles. Those deatheads that are metal stamped into the bayonets resemble more closely those tat are on the rifles. However, the metal stamped deatheads on the bayonets do not always present the full geometry due to mismatch of the stamp face to the bayonet geometry.
The engraved deatheads & runes on the bayonets vary from those found on rifles. The variance is usually in size: may be larger and or smaller depending where they are located.
Also, I did have numerous guns and scopes in Senich's book.

Richard Kuchta

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