Question about knives identification (brands, models) in general

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by Jorarz, Feb 11, 2021.

  1. Jorarz


    Feb 11, 2021
    Hello I'm starting in the world of knives collection so even if I started to read forums, watch videos and stuff to learn general things of course I'm still a ignorant on the matter ...
    My preferences are antique knives, mostly military knives and bayonets and any antique with a strong and good quality blade.
    One thing and the first one to call me the attention when I started and is what I want to ask to anyone who can tell me something about it is that I imagined that in this knives collection world the name of brands and models were totally essential to identify a knife for who is disposed to invest his money on buying one. Especially if they are military and antique or just antique knives with a big history behind. Just like for example car lovers world,musical instruments world, guns world (or almost any articles world) where knowing the brand and models are essential especially to know the year and place of fabrication and know something else about the piece. But I realized that is very common to find antique knives with no brand or model ID, and even if it has it sometimes is quite erased to read it or just name the brand and not the model and when you try to look information on internet about where and when that knife could be made it's impossible because maybe you know the brand, you know it's a german brand for example but there is not much information about the model. Why is that? It isn't for a knives collector very important to know as much as they can about a piece?
    I hope my question gets understood. Thanks!
  2. Yes, that information is important, it's just not as readily available due to the relative popularity of the hobby. Fewer people are in the knife collecting hobby, so fewer people are documenting the knowledge. And, just like there's less information about obscure car makers or models, there's naturally less information about obscure knifemakers and models. 20th Century military knives is one of the better documented parts of the knife hobby, particularly things like the Fairbairn-Sykes and various bayonet models:
    Fairbairn-Sykes Fighting Knives
    Bayonet Identification Guide
    Bayonet Identification
  3. Jorarz


    Feb 11, 2021
    I appreciate those links. I'll investigate them.
    Probably is what you say if less people is on the hobby most difficult is to find information. Despite that I found many people on the internet with the same interest on these knives types. I guess the question might be why knife makers factories during the years didn't seem to be particulary worried about identify their knives with a clearly model or name in a way which last even 100 years on the blade. It woud be much easier if you look a blade and see: okay is this brand, this model so I look information and know where and when it was made and in which context.
  4. If you're making a knife for the military under a government contract, the branding isn't really a priority. Many were made by government-owned factories like Rock Island Arsenal or Springfield Armory (the original one, not the private company that uses the name today), so there was no benefit to branding. In cases where multiple firms were used to make a particular knife (6 companies made the American M1905 bayonet), the most you'd expect to see is a maker's stamp on the ricasso. Remember that wartime production is entirely about making things as quickly and economically as possible.
  5. Velitrius

    Velitrius Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 3, 2000
    There are many references out there. I like arms2armor, for instance.

    Yeah, apparently manufacturers of militaria were more concerned with fulfilling the contracts than documentation for history.
    Danke42 likes this.
  6. tltt


    May 1, 2008
    Here are some other good ones -

    Noted military knives author Frank Trzaska's site - .

    The US Militaria site. Lots of heavy hitters there. Mostly US, but you can sneak in a World knives question there sometimes - .

    Old Smithy - , some great info there.

    A Swedish collectors site, there's some great stuff there - .

    A hidden gem, in our gallery portion - . Makandr is a respected author and knifemaker who collects the World. He posts a lot of knives you typically don't see many places.
  7. cbrstar


    Sep 7, 2015
    What helps me when I am interested in something is to try to study how it was made. Even now to invest in the tooling to stamp a product can be extremely expensive, and when the tooling wears out often many factories cannot afford to replace it. It also takes extra time and effort which ads to the cost. If I make 1000 knives and it costs me .10cents extra to stamp the $100 is not a big deal. But lets say I am creating 500 000 knives well now I need $50,000 extra capital. And with contracts often they chose who ever is simply the cheapest. You also have to look at the conditions the knives were being made. During Wartime corners are cut everywhere to keep up with demand.

    The internet is getting tougher to find good information. Excellent sites that were around 10-15 years ago are now long gone. I would go to your local library and see if they have any books on knives.
  8. Jorarz


    Feb 11, 2021
    Yeah, you're right. In war times probably that wasn't a priority and I didn't considered that more than just one factory made the same knife for the army. In cases of military knives if they are classic ones there are information available and if you can adquire one with a brand logo you almost got all the information you want. I wish all have the exactly year it was made that for me is something that can make me have much mor affection for the knife
  9. Jorarz


    Feb 11, 2021
    It's a good point. I don't know anything about forging but I imagined the factories just have one electric stamp machine with the logo of the factory marking the knives when the metal is still hot so I thought it was quickly to do it on every piece they make and using the same stamp.
  10. Jorarz


    Feb 11, 2021
    Thank you!!I'll definitely check those
  11. Jorarz


    Feb 11, 2021
    Thanks for the link!

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