By Bill Porter
Last month we wrapped up the foreign bayonets that were manufactured for the US M1 Carbine. I received a copy of a letter from fellow enthusiast shooterM1 that originated from a member of the Austrian military. The letter contained a statement that in 1956 the Austrian border guards were equipped with US M1 carbines. Perhaps this ties in with the scabbards that I had previously identified as Bavarian.
I was hoping to receive some feedback from our readers to help me decide what direction to go in from here. Since I didnít receive any, Iíve decided to take a lighter route. This month Iíve selected several pieces that I classify as prop bayonets. They may actually be movie props, toys, reproduction bayonets or who knows what, but Iíve categorized them all as props.
Early M1 Garand
This is a one piece casting of aluminum or pot metal. The bayonet does not come out of the scabbard. It has a wire hanger that will attach to a standard US web belt.
Saving Private Ryan M1 Garand
This bayonet is very similar to the one about except it is cast in plastic. The detail on the bayonet is also much greater. The back of the scabbard has a block section with a through hole molded as part of the assembly. The bayonet was attached to the actorsí gear with an electrical zip tie run through the hole.
Unknown M1 Garand
This is another cast aluminum M1 Garand replica. The top portion of the pommel is cast with a flat section towards the rear. There is a hole that runs through the section from top to bottom. I suspect that this is a screw hole for fastening the bayonet to its counterpart rifle.
Windtalkers Retractable M1 Garand Bayonets
I picked these bayonets up on ebay when all of the Windtalker props were being auctioned off by MGM. These were actual M1 bayonets that were extensively modified to create retractable blades. The original hilts were used, as were the blade tips. The majority of the blade has been replaced with a sheet metal sleeve made to resemble a blade. The blade tip is attached to a spring loaded round brass rod that retracts into the sleeve. The original grips are held in place with epoxy. The grip screw had to be eliminated because in would interfere with the retracting mechanism. These bayonets came in their own carrying case, accompanied by the ever so valuable Certificate of Authenticity.
Thatís it for another month. I have a few more of these beauties that weíll look at next month, then it will be time to find a new topic. I have a few ideas. As always, Iím open to your comments, questions and criticism as long as itís constructive. I can be reached firstname.lastname@example.org
I wish you all a happy, safe and joyous holiday season and a happy and prosperous New Year. During this wonderful season of giving, remember the families of our deployed servicemen. A small contribution on your part can go a long way in making someoneís holiday a little brighter. Check with your local National Guard for ways you can help. Connecticut residents can get information here:
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