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Thread: Buyer's Guide to fake French cuirassier swords

  1. #1

    Buyer's Guide to fake French cuirassier swords

    So, No. 2 in the series (started by Paul Digard).

    Ebay 6595650099 (photo below) - falsely aged so its a good one (fake that is). Pointers to look for :

    1 - Always be suspicious of October 1813 dates. Used by the Discrimating General and others before going back to those made by Manton in India in the early 1980's

    2 - No grip ferrule. Quite a give way.

    3 - Too many turns in the grip - the fake has about 15, the genuine article about 10 or 11

    4 - Look closely at the junction of the guard with the pommel. By 1813 the side bars connected into the pommel. The bars on early hilts did stop short but the detail on this sword is wrong.

    5 - Quality of stampings, in particular the wreathed B of Bick

    6 - Lack of stamping - a blade made in Oct 1813 would normally have Bick, Lobstein and the K of Krantz.

    7 - Hilt stamps and rack number - there is no known "F" stamp for this date

    8 - Compare with sword SWD-05 on the Discriminating General's site - take away the ageing and its identical

    9 - Last but not least, the bullshit in the description - de Fayolle was an inspector at Chatellerault in the 1850's not Klingenthal which at that time was a private enterprise of the Coulaux family.

    Richard.
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    Celeriter nil crede

  2. #2
    Here is the genuine article:
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  3. #3
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    Hi Richard,

    Thanks for your additional input. Data on fakes is as important as data on originals and your efforts on this point are very much appreciated.

    Mark
    mark@swordforum.com

    ~ Hostem Hastarum Cuspidibus Salutemus ~

    "Those who beat their swords into plowshares usually end up plowing for those who don't."
    Benjamin Franklin

  4. #4
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    I'm very grateful for this type of information because it is a pattern i am attracted to.

    Military Heritage does mention their reasoning for a lack of ferrule and more wire, their AN XII does sport the feature. Is their explanation that some original swords did not have a ferrule simply conjecture?

    http://www.militaryheritage.com/swords1.htm

    Although a later pattern, does this sword look good and with its original wrap?

    http://www.collectorsfirearms.com/sw609.htm

    Cheers

    Hotspur; trying to learn what I can, however erstwhile the pursuit

  5. #5
    Originally posted by Glen C.
    I'm very grateful for this type of information because it is a pattern i am attracted to.

    Military Heritage does mention their reasoning for a lack of ferrule and more wire, their AN XII does sport the feature. Is their explanation that some original swords did not have a ferrule simply conjecture?

    http://www.militaryheritage.com/swords1.htm
    As far as I am concerned, I have never seen an original sword (AnXIII model) without a ferrule and there are a lot of originals around. However, that is not to say they don't exist but I would suggest this is simply sales pitch, after all if you are offering a replica sword that isn't exactly a replica, you have to give some explanation



    Although a later pattern, does this sword look good and with its original wrap?

    http://www.collectorsfirearms.com/sw609.htm


    Looks perfectly OK to me. As far as I know, nobody has ever copied that particular pattern (the 1854 Dragoon sabre).
    Last edited by Richard Dellar; 01-11-2006 at 01:28 PM.
    Celeriter nil crede

  6. #6
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    Thanks Richard

    Superb, once again you've excelled yourself, just what people
    like myself who are starting out in this area need.
    As Mr McMorrow said, infomation on fakes is just as important as knowledge about the real thing!

  7. #7
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    Richard,

    It appears to me that the quillion on the replica sword has a much more pronounced curve. That on the original appears to be more subtle. Is that generally true for all originals? Is that another way to distinguish the real from the fake?

    Andre

  8. #8
    Originally posted by A.Ducote
    Richard,

    It appears to me that the quillion on the replica sword has a much more pronounced curve. That on the original appears to be more subtle. Is that generally true for all originals? Is that another way to distinguish the real from the fake?

    Andre
    I'm afraid not, Andre. That part of the guard on original swords often gets quite bent back.

    One thing I didn't say, though, because of the vagaries of photography, is with regard to the colour of the brass. I think modern brass has a stronger colour, the brass on original early 19th century swords is a lot paler.

    Richard
    Celeriter nil crede

  9. #9

    re

    Hello all,

    Their is a exeption in the sabre without ferrule, the Dutch Cuirassier model Patern M.1814 ( heavy cav. sabre No 3) is almost the same as the the French one, exept it has no markings on the spine of the blade and has no ferrule on the grip against the hilt. Mainly the scabbards are not as heavy as the French ones. But iam also convinced the one on the picture above is a fake.

    Marc

    ( Picture on request)

  10. #10
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    Thanks for this good effort, Richard. This sort of threads are well worth a print, for future reference!

    After all, this is our well-known problem with internet sales. Most, if not all reproductions will render as fakes when handling them in person, but buying just looking at some pics can be extremely tricky.

    But nowadays, I think that internet sources should not be readily discarded. And therefore, these informations are very helpful.

    As a side note, the Spanish M1815 is also patterned after this French sword (AnXIII), and it has also a grip ferrule. However, the markings are those of the Toledo Factory, almost without exception, which makes it easy to tell them from the others.

    Juan J.
    SI, SI
    NO, NON

  11. #11
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    Originally posted by Richard Dellar
    I'm afraid not, Andre. That part of the guard on original swords often gets quite bent back.

    One thing I didn't say, though, because of the vagaries of photography, is with regard to the colour of the brass. I think modern brass has a stronger colour, the brass on original early 19th century swords is a lot paler.

    Richard
    I agree with you on the color of brass.

    Andre

  12. #12

    Dutch M1814 Follow Up

    Quote Originally Posted by marc Marbot View Post
    Hello all,

    Their is a exeption in the sabre without ferrule, the Dutch Cuirassier model Patern M.1814 ( heavy cav. sabre No 3) is almost the same as the the French one, exept it has no markings on the spine of the blade and has no ferrule on the grip against the hilt. Mainly the scabbards are not as heavy as the French ones. But iam also convinced the one on the picture above is a fake.

    Marc

    ( Picture on request)
    Marc:

    I'm new to collecting and the forum. I recently picked up a sword in Bolivia without knowing anything about it. I came across your post when researching it. It has all the characteristics of a French Cuirassier except that it is shorter (33.5 in) and bears only 1 marking; Paul Remant - Paris. No stamps or ensinias at all. Hence your reference to Dutch M1814 which you say also bears no marks. I'd be obliged for the photo you noted.
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  13. #13

    re

    Hi Mr Daniels,

    Your sabre is not Dutch but the French M.1816 cuirassier sabre...

    Best Marc

  14. #14
    This looks to be a French M1882 (or M1896) cavalry blade married to a M1854 type hilt. The blade is a later example ("civilian" supplier - judging from the markings) - probably the end of the 19th or beginning of the 20th century.
    Last edited by Lev B.; 09-08-2009 at 01:50 AM.

  15. #15

    re

    Also possible, iam not a expert for swords after the first Empire ...

  16. #16
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    Lucky French Swords

    A few years ago I noticed on ebay, two French swords, one dated 1816, the other a later hilt on a bifullered blade. Both were described as having clearcoat on them. This frightened away many would be buyers as the price for both (separate auctions from same seller) totaled $500.
    Was I surprised to see someone had at a much later date added clearcoat. The 1816 was a 1816, the other had the later 4 bar hilt to a 1808 blade. Needless to say I made a handsome profit on both. Neither had scabbards.

  17. #17

    French Cuirassier

    Quote Originally Posted by marc Marbot View Post
    Also possible, iam not a expert for swords after the first Empire ...
    Gentlemen:

    Thank you both. The date of late 19th early 20th centruty seems appropriate. The stamp has a very manufactured look. I had thought it might be a later blade with the earlier hilt, as Lev suggests but did not see any obvious signs of being re-assembled, as described in other postings.
    Half the fun of owning them is the story of getting them. The other half is figuring out where they came from. I'll continue.

    Again, thank you. The forum is a phenomenal resource.

  18. #18
    Can you shed any light on this one ?
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  19. #19
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    Hello Graeme,
    It looks like a M1822 hilt with an earlier AN XIII blade.
    The blade is inscribed 'Manufacture R'le (Royale i.e. Louis XVIII) du Klingenthal' and dated August 1814 meaning that the blade was manufactured whilst Napoleon was exiled on the island of Elba. Very nice.
    Ian
    Last edited by Ian Knight; 09-09-2009 at 03:42 PM.

  20. #20
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    your advice please

    I have been offerd a french cuirassier sword dated on the back of the blade 1836 . It has all the stamps on the hand guard and the handle is well worn also the writing on the back of the blade is very hard to make out due to wear and tear but i did make the date out with a strong magnifying glass to 1836 . Now i am worried about fakes as i read what you had put on here so i have made sure that it has the right amount of turns on the handle and it does and has plenty of stamps on the hand guard but it has no stamps on the blade itself ? I have french bayonets dating from 1868 onwards i e the chasspott and crass and they have those little stamps on the blade but this sword has none ? the sword itself looks old enough and its a private buy of a dealer i know and i have always had good buys from him but i thought i would check this out with you before i buy . Please get back to me . John .

  21. #21
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    Check the pommel where the blade tang is peened, does it have corrosion or good patina and does not look like someone beat it with a hammer? Ask to take photos, greatly helps in determining. Is the top of the blade flat or curved as this 1820 dated sword?


    Last edited by Will Mathieson; 10-20-2011 at 09:29 AM. Reason: change incorrect photo

  22. #22
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    An XIII

    Good morning John,
    Here is mine
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  23. #23
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    Thank you so much for getting back to me . Were the tang is peened is not scrappy or beaten . The sword ballances were it is supposed to ballance . It has the right amount of turns on the handle . The writing on the blade is well scrolled and not scruffy . I was talking to a friend at Birmingham arms fair about it and so far it checks out but were is differrent is that the tang passes through a little decrative brass borbal thing . There are stamps and numers on the brass guard . I was told at the arms fair that the Cuirassiers swords that were fakes were all faked to be from the Napolionic wars .

  24. #24
    hi, its not just french heavy cavalry swords that are fake, other points to check are plastic grips, misspell words on blade, dates not matching between blade and guard, i am not talking about a few years but 70 or 80 years and the date not matching the swords period.
    I think each auction i have been to this year as had one or two fake swords, so take care and leave alone if you feel its wrong. michael

  25. #25
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    Hi there , How can i check the date on the blade with the date on the handle ? Please let me know . There is a stamp that looks like a B on the guard followed by the numbers on the guard are 1 3 1 3 then a stamped 13 inset then another inset stamp which i have seen on other cuirassier sword then another very warn inset stamp . Now i think the wire around the leather on the handle has been replaced at some period of time as its not twisted as tight as i have seen on other same swords . There is nothing loose on the sword at all but the leather is well worn in places and it has had afew knocks . Its not a clean sword and some of the markings on the top of the blade are worn away and to read the date i had to use a very strong eye glass that i use for small Roman coins . I dont think i have any doubts about the blade itself .

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