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Thread: "Rare" Enamelled Prussian Saber 1916

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
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    Birmingham Alabama
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    "Rare" Enamelled Prussian Saber 1916

    OK, here is the Prussian 1916 Ernst Busch saber, this time with pix. It seems to me that about 5% of the WW 1 made Prussian Artillery Sabers, "neuer Art" (n/A) are sometimes painted.

    Most are just rusty when I find them, so it is hard to say now what the ratio was..

    The Grip: Most of these made after 1891, have a Bakelite grip, during the Great War, the Germans ran short of the raw materiel or just decided to use a cheaper alternative, The wood was named in that era as "Nußbaumholz" or Walnut as it is usually translated. I have seen one German source that stated "Eichenholz" or Oak was used as well...The wood grips were varnished with a linseed oil varnish, similar to that which was used in the barrel channels of rifles and carbines. When these turn up today, the grips need a little TLC, I use Formby's Tung Oil varnish, thinned out with naptha to re-oil the wood, this soaks in and subsequent coats eventually bring back the semigloss appearance of the original finish.

    Measurements are; Overall length:92 cm, Weapon length: 89 cm, blade length, (measured straight): 75 cm, max width:30 mm, and thickness: 8 mm.

    This blade was apparently factory sharpened for combat...(judging by the excellent work!) Scabbard is painted with the same paint as the hilt.

    Dale
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  2. #2
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    Oct 2007
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    Kingston area, Ontario Canada
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    Great find Dale, have you found period photos with this pattern sword?

  3. #3
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    Jul 2008
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    Will: I have seen period photos of troops on the eastern front, fighting the Russians with subdued sabers, I cannot recall the book, but it was the Feldgendarmerie, IIRC. I have seen no photos of anything with this saber on the western front from that war---Not even artillery units..

    Dale

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
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    West Yorkshire, England.
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    I have one of these dated 1915 on the blade and 1920 on the langet, no scabbard and no grip, just the metal. When I burned the remains of the "paint" off to clean it up and de rust it, there was a definite smell of pitch or bitumen. This was the state of it and the other relic I bought with it. There was a fair bit of surface rust that had crept under the scabby surface treatment.
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  5. #5
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    DavidR: Feel free to copy my pictures for a guide if you are making a new wooden grip...I found a scabbard for US $80.00 on the net, but I do not think it can be sent to GB.

    Dale

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    West Yorkshire, England.
    Posts
    335
    I considered a plain wooden grip, but in the end I went for the older type, leather over string over wood. Another scabbard is always a risk, my experience has been that they rarely match even from the same model and maker..... The two swords together cost me the same as a sit down pizza meal for two, and I sold the other for just a little less than I paid for the two together. So it owes me little, and I enjoy it as it now is.

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