By Bill Porter
After the long summer hiatus I had a hard time getting back into the swing of things. Missed the November column but squeaked in the December a little after the deadline. Fortunately Frank is a forgiving soul.
I only received feedback from one reader after the last column and he commented that it was dull. My only defense is that weíre working with M7 bayonets here folks; youíve got to cut me some slack. Theyíre not the most exciting bayonets out there!
I had an opportunity to visit with Bill and John Humes a few weeks ago (see Frankís November column for pictures of Billís M7 bayonet display). Bill allowed me to photograph a few of his bayonets to use in this months column, but due to a digital camera problem I was unable to retrieve the photos. Iíll either get them or meet up with Bill again and photograph them a second time. In the meantime I pulled a couple of less-boring pieces out of the collection.
Swiss SIG Stoner / M16 Bayonet
This is an experimental Swiss bayonet for the Stoner rifle and the M16 bayonet. It was made in the 1960ís. It bears a strong resemblance to the Swiss PE57 bayonet. It has a bright double edged blade and a black grooved plastic grip.
The scabbard body is plastic with a steel mouth piece. The scabbard is equipped with a green cotton web frog that is permanently attached.
These are relatively scarce bayonets.
Overall length 370 mm
Blade length 243 mm
Blade thickness 4.7 mm
Blade width 21.6 mm
German GMS M16 bayonet
These bayonets are often erroneously identified as Eickhorn/Stoner bayonets. As I write this there is an on-line auction that just closed where that is the case. The seller was notified but unfortunately he opted to not correct his item description. Again I am amazed by the lack of integrity in some people.
In the mid-1970s the Eickhorn firm went bankrupt. One of the firmís assets that was sold was their trademark. It was acquired by a German firm named GMS. I do not know the full name of the company. They manufactured these bayonets and a G3 bayonet, both bearing the squirrel trademark that is often attributed to Eickhorn. (Eickhorn did reacquire their trademark several years later.)
The bayonet does resemble the Eickhorn bayonet. It has a wide, bowie tipped blade that can be used with the scabbard as a wire cutter. The black plastic grip is made from a different, less brittle plastic than the Eickhorn bayonet. The grip has a slight swell in the middle.
The biggest difference between this bayonet and the Eickhorn is the wire cutter attachment at the bottom of the scabbard. Even though Eickhorn was bankrupt, they still held the patent to the wire cutter system that was used on their bayonets. GMS had to design a different wire cutter assembly to use with their bayonets. The plastic body looks like it could have been made in the same mold as the original scabbards. The green cotton webbing is made so it can be removed from a belt by unsnapping and opening the loop of the frog.
Overall length 302 mm
Blade length 176 mm
Blade thickness 3.5 mm
Blade width 30.0 mm
That wraps things up for this month. I hope all of you have a happy and healthy holiday season. Please try to remember and help those less fortunate than you.
Any questions or comments can be forwarded to me email@example.com.
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