By Bill Porter
I started off my May report by writing, "it’s been a very quiet month". That was about as far as I got before being overwhelmed with everything else that was going on in my life. Unfortunately something had to go undone and it ended up being my hobby.
I received an email from our host, Frank Trzaska, inquiring about a marking on a foreign M1 bayonet. The mark consists of an oval containing the letters "AEP" over a two-digit number. My first response was Italian, but I cannot find any reference to this marking in any of my publications. At first I thought it was the same as the marks on a M7 style BM59 bayonet I have, but that blade is marked "AET". I spoke to a few of my collecting associates and the general consensus is Italian, but we have not been able to locate the definitive source of information to substantiate our thoughts.
AEP Marked Garand type bayonet
Since receiving this photo I have obtained an "AEP" marked example for my collection. The bayonet is without a doubt an Italian bayonet. The "AET" marking on the BM59 bayonet represents "Arsenale Esercito Torino". I believe the "AEP" represents an Italian Arsenal in a city whose name starts with the letter "P". The bayonet came in a standard Italian manufactured M7 style scabbard. Can anyone out there help to positively identify this bayonet?
I received an email from a fellow collector in Denmark with some additional information on the Danish manufactured M1 bayonets. Christian Frisch-Jensen writes:
I am a Danish bayonet collector, and I may have
some information to your report. The
Danes used 4 different scabbards with the M1 bayonet:
FKF 1955-The first model
FKF - the second model
HTK - the third model
HMAK - the fourth model
All model were wood grained, and paired with different bayonets, US made and Danish made. The Danish made bayonets were marked: FKF 1955. I have one of each. Bayonets and scabbards were paired in the depots, and nobody cared to see if it was Danish or US bayonets. We also used US scabbards.
FKF= Forsvarets Krigsmateriel Forvaltning
HTK= Hærens Tekniske Korps
HMAK= Hærens MAteriel Komando
All means the same, but name changed in the years. HMAK are in use now.
The Danish M1 bayonets are now obsolete, but easy to find here, and not very expensive, about 50.00 US$ in good condition.
About the Danish M5 bayonet. We started with US bayonets, I have 1 originally packed in US made by IMPERIAL, still sealed in the cardboard box from a Danish depot, with all US markings still on.
The latest model is marked HMAK M62 on the pommel, and were as far as I know never in use, all I have seen has been brand new. My bayonet was still in the factory plastic cover, and marked 06-93, received by the army in June 1993. They were, as far as I know obsolete at that time.
The M62 bayonet (both the HTK M62 and HMAK M62 ) was never used as a bayonet, only as a trenchknife ( skyttegravskniv )
The danes call them " skyttegravskniv M62 "
I hope this can be to helpful to you, and you are
always welcome to email to me if I can be to any use to you.
In our last report we were discussing some of the foreign manufactured bayonets for the US M1 Carbine. We’ll continue now where we left off at the end of April.
Dutch M4 Bayonets
These are very well made copies of the US M4 bayonet. They were manufactured by Horster in Germany for the Dutch Army. The blade is very similar to the US M4 blade. The grips are made of a dark red or maroon plastic. The early bayonets had the grips attached with rivets. The later manufactured bayonets, or pieces that went back through the armory for repairs, had the grips fastened with slotted head screws and round spanner-type nuts. The majority of the Dutch bayonets I have seen have exposed rivets on the crossguard. I have also seen a small number with smooth crossguards. The bayonets I’ve seen with the smooth crossguard have all had a seven-digit serial number stamped on the crossguard.
The scabbards are an M8A1 style. The body has a greenish brown wood-grained appearance. The metal throat on one scabbard has a Parkerized finish. The round rivets in the webbing are painted black. Another example has the metal throat and rivets painted OD.
Northridge Arms in California imported a fair quantity of these bayonets about ten years ago. They were all individually wrapped and sealed in plastic sleeves. The hilts were wrapped in a corrosion inhibiting paper, making it impossible to see the grips. Several conversations with a Northridge employee convinced them to cut open a few of the packages to see if the grips were secured by screws or rivets. When Northridge realized that there were two different variations and that customers would be interested in multiple purchases based on this, they proceeded to cut open and separate the bayonets. They reported that there was one riveted bayonet for every three or four with screws.
Overall length 296 mm
Blade length 172 mm
Blade thickness 4.6 mm
Blade width 22.0 mm
Dutch M4 bayonets
Norwegian Converted M1894 Krag
This bayonet started out as a Norwegian M1894 Krag. Some time after World War II the Norwegians modified a group of surplus M1894s for use on the US M1 Carbine. A slot was machined across the top of the crossguard. A muzzle ring assembly was then brazed into place in the machined slot. It was a very clean, professional job. A small notch was machined across the back of the pommel to create the correct muzzle ring to latch dimension.
The original Krag steel scabbard was also modified for use. A bracket was brazed to the back of the scabbard body. Again, it was a very nice, clean job. A web frog was then riveted to the new bracket, allowing the scabbard to be worn on a standard web belt.
This particular bayonet has a very unique feature, one that I discovered by accident. When I first received my copy of M. H. Cole’s U.S. Military Knives Book IV I was looking through it and drawing of this bayonet caught my eye. Mr. Cole clearly shows the serial number of the bayonet in his excellent line drawing. The number looked very familiar and when I checked my bayonet I found that it was the actual piece that Mr. Cole had sketched for his book!
Overall length 334 mm
Blade length 214 mm
Blade thickness 3.9 mm
Blade width 18.8 mm
Norwegian converted M94 bayonet
Norwegian M4 Bayonet
This is a Norwegian manufactured M4 bayonet that is an exact copy of the leather-gripped US M4 bayonet. The segmented leather grip has six grooves and resin spacers at each end. The front of the crossguard is marked U.S.M4 over a Crowned K, which is the mark for the Norwegian Kongsberg Arsenal. The same arsenal mark is also found on the end of the pommel.
The scabbard is a Norwegian manufactured copy of the USM8A1. The throat is marked U.S.M8A1 in outlined letters and also has the Kongsberg arsenal mark.
Overall length 295 mm
Blade length 171 mm
Blade thickness 4.5 mm
Blade width 21.7 mm
I hope you found this month’s selection informative and enjoyable. I’m particularly happy that I’ve been able to pass along information from other collectors that helps to make us all a little better informed. None of us can know everything, but we all have bits and pieces of information that would be helpful to others. I encourage all of you to send in any information you may have on the current or past subjects and share it with your fellow collectors. Trust me, it makes the hobby much more fun.
If you have any questions or comments please drop me a line. If you’d like to correspond about any other bayonet related topic I’d love to hear about your interests, too. I can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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