Jump to content
Gentleman's Military Interest Club

Recommended Posts

This is true.I had seen a rifle and bayonet pair with the same marking.I presume the number of rifles would reflect the number of bayonets.

An interesting bit of detail I saw in a regulation (Stempelvorschrift) on size of numbering gives the troop designation (K.S.)stamp size at 4.2 mm and the series number as 2.1mm .I have found this to be true on bayonets and swords.

(D.V.E. Nr. 185 -Vorschrift uber das Stempeln der Handwaffen von 28. Januar 1909, Berlin)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is true.I had seen a rifle and bayonet pair with the same marking.I presume the number of rifles would reflect the number of bayonets.

Hi,

that does not have to be the case, if the first lot of rifles for GSWA were 1-1000 and the next lot were 2500-3000 then already there is a gap of 1500. Apparently there are GSWA bayonets in the 12 000 range... I doubt there were 12 000 Schutztruppe rifles in DSWA.

Best

Chris

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chris,

I think there could have been more than 12.000.

There were in fact over 20,000 troops in DSWA in 1905 ( the year of maximum strength) of which 19,600 were NCO and Soldiers, and 1,020 were officers and 286 were staff . ( Werner Haupt ,Die Deutsche Schutztruppe Pg. 53).

So there certainly could have been up to 20,000 rifles and bayonets in my estimation .

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chris,

I think there could have been more than 12.000.

There were in fact over 20,000 troops in DSWA in 1905 ( the year of maximum strength) of which 19,600 were NCO and Soldiers, and 1,020 were officers and 286 were staff . ( Werner Haupt ,Die Deutsche Schutztruppe Pg. 53).

So there certainly could have been up to 20,000 rifles and bayonets in my estimation .

Indeed, but at that stage they were still armed largely with G88 and long bayonets I think. By 1908- 09 it was a fraction of that number of troops in GSWA and that is when I see the start of G98 and KS98 bayonets being issued. (Earliest KS98 I have seen is 1906, but most seem to be about 1912... and that was approval stamps in Germany, no sign that they were anywhere near africa in 1906)

I am betting the G98 and KS98 were limited to regular troops, and G88 for reserves... and seeing the relative shortage of rifles in Germany 1913-14 it is unlikely they had big stocks squirreled away in GSWA.

I think to get an accurate guestimate, of DSWA G98 and KS98 you simply need to look at the regular trrops effectives for 1914 and use it as a rough estimate

Best

Chris

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chris,

You are right about the KS98 years.One sees many from 1907 onwards and very few earlier.It is strange that that one does not see other bayonets except KS98 coming out of GSWA and East Africa .Certainly the numbers go up to multiple thousands as seen on the Colonial Uniforms website where a KS98 from 1913 numbered over 11,000 is seen ..

Some further research is needed here .

Certainly period photos show the Gew 98 in most photos .See this photo

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Any idea what numbers the KS stampings go up to?

This is an interesting question. I'm not really sure, but here's my thoughts on it based on the bayonets on this page from various private collectors-

http://s400910952.websitehome.co.uk/germancolonialuniforms/militaria/bayonets%20dswa.htm

The DSWA kS98 bayonets shown on the webpage are in order of their weapon numbers-

KS1516 W10 leather grip

KS1613 W06 leather grip

KS2183 W12 leather grip

KS2556 W12 leather grip

KS2698 W12 leather grip

KS2749 W12 leather grip

KS4892 W12 leather grip

KS4916 W12 leather grip

KS5278 W12 rubber grip

KS11067 W?? leather grip

KS85.34 W06 leather grip

As I understand it, the date was marked at the factory where it was made and the weapon number was marked by the local armourer in the colony at the time of issue.

Although this is only a small sample and not conclusive, I’d speculate then that these bayonets were all issued after 1910 (if the KS1613 is numbered after a W10 bayonet that seems reasonable). So none of these were in use during the Herero Rebellion when Schutztruppe numbers were over 10,000.

As Chris Boonzaier has said there may have been gaps in the sequence and the sequence probably did not start at 1. 1,000 is more likely. I have not seen any DSWA kS98 bayonets number 1-999.

The numbers from 2,000 up are a new W12 batch, I would speculate. The numbers might well have run sequencially from 2,000-5,000 or higher.

The KS5278 having unvulcanised rubber grips was issued in early 1914. Or at least it was re-gripped then. It may have seen earlier service with leather grips, but it looks too clean and shiny to have worn through one pair of grips.

I would speculate then that these were the last issued kS98, and that’s how high the numbers went, the early 5,000s. These are only the Erfurt manufactured bayonets though. There were also the Horster 1913 kS98 bayonets which do not seem to have been weapon numbered.

I think of the other two bayonets KS11067 and KS85.34 they must have been working to a different numbering system, something localised perhaps or maybe a system pre-dating the others. I don’t understand it but as KS85.34 is W06, it seems unlikely that it was issued three thousand numbers after a 1914 bayonet. Maybe the punctuation between the 85 and the 34 is significant in some way.

It also seems odd that if all the bayonets in between 5,000 and 11,000 exist, it’s odd we don’t see any numbered 6,000 or 9,000.

I don’t know all the answers here, but hopefully we can work some of it out between us….

Cheers

Chris

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

This is an interesting question. I'm not really sure, but here's my thoughts on it based on the bayonets on this page from various private collectors-

http://s400910952.we...yonets dswa.htm

The DSWA kS98 bayonets shown on the webpage are in order of their weapon numbers-

KS1516 W10 leather grip

KS1613 W06 leather grip

KS2183 W12 leather grip

KS2556 W12 leather grip

KS2698 W12 leather grip

KS2749 W12 leather grip

KS4892 W12 leather grip

KS4916 W12 leather grip

KS5278 W12 rubber grip

KS11067 W?? leather grip

KS85.34 W06 leather grip

As I understand it, the date was marked at the factory where it was made and the weapon number was marked by the local armourer in the colony at the time of issue.

Although this is only a small sample and not conclusive, I’d speculate then that these bayonets were all issued after 1910 (if the KS1613 is numbered after a W10 bayonet that seems reasonable). So none of these were in use during the Herero Rebellion when Schutztruppe numbers were over 10,000.

As Chris Boonzaier has said there may have been gaps in the sequence and the sequence probably did not start at 1. 1,000 is more likely. I have not seen any DSWA kS98 bayonets number 1-999.

The numbers from 2,000 up are a new W12 batch, I would speculate. The numbers might well have run sequencially from 2,000-5,000 or higher.

The KS5278 having unvulcanised rubber grips was issued in early 1914. Or at least it was re-gripped then. It may have seen earlier service with leather grips, but it looks too clean and shiny to have worn through one pair of grips.

I would speculate then that these were the last issued kS98, and that’s how high the numbers went, the early 5,000s. These are only the Erfurt manufactured bayonets though. There were also the Horster 1913 kS98 bayonets which do not seem to have been weapon numbered.

I think of the other two bayonets KS11067 and KS85.34 they must have been working to a different numbering system, something localised perhaps or maybe a system pre-dating the others. I don’t understand it but as KS85.34 is W06, it seems unlikely that it was issued three thousand numbers after a 1914 bayonet. Maybe the punctuation between the 85 and the 34 is significant in some way.

It also seems odd that if all the bayonets in between 5,000 and 11,000 exist, it’s odd we don’t see any numbered 6,000 or 9,000.

I don’t know all the answers here, but hopefully we can work some of it out between us….

Cheers

Chris

Chris ,

From the examples I have acces to .All Erfurt leather grip.

KS2118 W07

KS5031 W12

KS8220 W09

KS8454 W07

KS10195 W10

KS10998 W10

Another interesting observation that there are 2 styles and sizes of "KS" letters where the "K" is distinctly different style and size

Then there are two sizes of numbering!

The style one the "KS" has 5.6mm high letters and 3,8mm numbers and the following bayonets seem to have that size

KS1516 W10

KS2118 W07

KS2183 W12

KS2232 W ?

KS2556 W12

KS2698 W12

KS2749 W12

KS4892 W12

KS4916 W12

KS5031 W12

KS5278 W12

KS8220 W09

The style two the "KS" has 5,1mm high letters and 2,6 mm numbers and the following seem to have that size

KS8534 W06

KS10195 W10

KS10988 W10

KS11067 W?

Then style three the "KS" has 5,1mm high letters and 3,8mm high numbers and the following seem to have that size

KS1613 W06

KS8454 W07

I have measured those bayonets I have access to and estimated the others from the photos .

What seems to emerge ,although the sample is probably to small ,is that the numbering must have happened maybe at three different times of bayonets in stock regardless of the year of manufacture

I think style three must have been early say around 1907/08 purely because no bayonets manufacture dates are marked post 1907

I think style two could have been mid period say 1910 because no bayonets manufacture dates are marked post 1910

And lastly style one seems to have been the last around 1913 as no bayonet manufacture dates are beyond 1912

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chris also note that none of the sizes of lettering or numbering conforms to the "Stempelvorschrift " of D.V.E. Nr. 185 -"Vorschrift ueber das Strempeln der Handwaffen vom 28 Januar 1909" . According to these regs . the letters should be 4,2mm and numbering of weapon should be 2,1mm .These sizes were adhered to on the swords !

It seems they used whatever punches they had available in the colonies!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Piekenier,

You've made some very good points there. I'd never noticed the lettering differences before. And thanks for the additional bayonet numberings. So it seems there were bayonets numbered in the 8,000s and 10,000s... that makes it look like all the numbers were used at least from 1,000 to 11,000. I can't understand why they would issue 10,000 bayonets to a force less than 2,000 strong by 1910?

Cheers

Chris

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Piekenier,

You've made some very good points there. I'd never noticed the lettering differences before. And thanks for the additional bayonet numberings. So it seems there were bayonets numbered in the 8,000s and 10,000s... that makes it look like all the numbers were used at least from 1,000 to 11,000. I can't understand why they would issue 10,000 bayonets to a force less than 2,000 strong by 1910?

Cheers

Chris

I think as said above, there must be huge gaps in the numbering, depending what series of numbers (rifles) were delivered.

Best

Chris

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Chris ,

These are all unanswered questions .

What would be great is if other collectors could send photos and info on their KS98 bayonet markings and we could start a data base for our research .

I understand KS98 bayonets and rifles were also sent to GEA from GSWA in 1914 due to toal blockades of GEA .So they were brought bake from there as well .The Sch.DOA marked bayonets are seen less frequently .

I have just found a photo on another GSWA KS98 bayonet on Gunboards.com Forum .It is a W04 marked KS3175 with the 5,6mm "K" and 3,8mm numbers !Once again is a style one .

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Just a further bit of info on strength of the Troops in DSWA according to the book "Die Geschichte des Deutschen Unteroffisiers "wriiten by Hauptmann a.D. Freiherr von Ledebur.

1902/03 = 825

1904 = 9,500

1905 =15,000

1906 =10,000

1907 = 4,000

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Look at this nice 98/02 bayonet .I think the markings may be colonial DSWA .The marking are F S A 2.26. I think that is Feldsignalabteiling .It comes from a collection in Namibia and it is proofmarked W 02. I cannot for some reason upload photos today?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow! I've never seen anything like that before, though you may well be right with the unit...

Thanks very much for showing the pictures! I suppose you know what I'm going to ask...

Cheers

Chris

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Look at this nice 98/02 bayonet .I think the markings may be colonial DSWA .The marking are F S A 2.26. I think that is Feldsignalabteiling .It comes from a collection in Namibia and it is proofmarked W 02. I cannot for some reason upload photos today?

That is probably as good a guess as any, I cannot think of a more likely unit desgnaton.

I would love to have that to round out the DSWA Bayonet collection.

Very well done!

All the best

Chris

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here some more photos of a 98-02 from a Pioneer Regt. (www.old-smithy.info) collection with his permission

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×