By Bill Porter
My wife is back home from her volunteer work in Baton Rouge and New Orleans and life is back to normal, or as normal as life with five kids can be, in the Porter household. It was a personally fulfilling experience for Mary and Iím very proud of her for giving so much of herself to help those in need. Mary does not want any praise or accolades for her work, but living in a small town, something as big as this was bound to hit the local news. The Monroe Courier ran an article about the relief effort in Louisiana and what Mary did there:Monroe Courier Article Follow-up Article
On another personal note, I want to mention again that I am running for a position on the Board of Directors for the Society of American Bayonet Collectors (SABC). If you are a member of SABC (and if youíre reading this you should be) Iíd certainly appreciate your support. Anyone who wants information on joining should contact me.
Itís been a while, but we were featuring foreign made bayonets for the US M16 rifle. Back in October I posted a photo of a Philippine bayonet that was sent in by Ian Brazier of New Zealand but I had lost his email and wasnít able to properly credit the photo. Thank you, Ian, for sharing it with us.
Eickhorn AES M9
This bayonet is a variation of Eickhornís KCB Series of bayonets. In 1986 Eickhorn submitted an improved KCB 77 bayonet to the US Army bayonet trials for the new M9 bayonet. The two bayonets pictured below are a further refinement of the design submitted for the trials. Eickhorn, as we all know, was not successful in obtaining the M9 bayonet contract. They felt that their product was superior to the winning design and the box for the AES M9 bayonet says "the genuine and better M9".
The two bayonets are basically the same with one having some additional "bells and whistles". The grip on both is Eickhornís standard ribbed, rectangular plastic grip that is molded to the blade tang. Both models have a neon indicator light in the grip that alerts the user to an electrical charge in a wire they may be cutting. A decal on the grip states that it is NBC (nuclear, biological and chemical) and Fungus resistant. The blade is also a standard Eickhorn pattern with a saw back and clip point. The lower end of the crossguard is bent at a right angle to act as a bottle opener. The pommel is retained by a singe Phillips head screw. The upgraded model has what Eickhorn calls a pressure lubrification system.
The plastic scabbard is considerably longer than the bayonet blade. This is to provide greater leverage when used in conjunction with the bayonet blade as a wire cutter. Both scabbards are equipped with a plastic cover for the wire cutter assembly on the end of the scabbard. The upgraded scabbard has a spring tension adjustment knob on the face of the scabbard allowing the user to practically lock the bayonet in the scabbard. It also has an additional screw near the wire cutter assembly that is an adjustment screw to keep the bayonet blade tight to the cutter plate. The top end of the upgraded scabbard has 5 ribs to provide a better grip for use as a wire cutter. Both scabbards have a sapphire impregnated sharpener on the back side of the scabbard body near the mouth.
Eickhorn manufactured a variety of adapters enabling their bayonets to be used on a wide range of weapons. Two adapters are shown below.
These bayonets were available on the US commercial market back in the late 19080s and early 1990s, but you donít see them around much any more. They sold at a premium price and I donít think they were a big seller.
Overall length 299 mm
Blade length 170 mm
Blade thickness 3.4 mm
Blade width 29.6 mm
Belgian M7 FNC
This Belgian manufactured bayonet is very similar in construction to the Eickhorn manufactured bayonets. The one piece plastic grip is molded to the blade tang and the pommel; is secured by a single Phillips head screw. The blade is similar in design to the US M7 bayonet blade. The entire bayonet has a dark parkerized finish. The blade is stamped with a script "FN" within an oval.
The scabbard is a US M8A1 style scabbard with a black plastic body and a green web frog. The same FN logo is molded into the face of the scabbard body. the scabbard throat is unmarked.
This bayonet is made to the same dimensions as the US M7 bayonet but it is actually made for the Belgian FNC. The Worldís Armies by Chris Westhorp has an excellent photograph of the Belgian 1st Batallion of the Para-Commando Regiment on parade with bayonets fixed on their carbines.
Overall length 296 mm
Blade length 168 mm
Blade thickness 4.7 mm
Blade width 21.7 mm
Iíd like to wish all of you and your families a happy and wonderful holiday season and a joyous and Happy New Year. Please remember those less fortunate than you during this beautiful season of giving. A small contribution on your part can make a tremendous difference in the life of someone in need. Donít forget our deployed servicemen and their family members who are going through the holidays without mom or dad there, sometimes having trouble making ends meet. You can contact your local National Guard to see what you can do to help. Connecticut residents can get more information on Operation ELF (Embracing Lonely Families) athttp://www.ct.gov/governorrell/cwp/view.asp?Q=306624&A=1761
That does it for another month. As always, I welcome your comments or input. Questions or comments can be forwarded to me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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