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  1. Another horrible Zimbler fake is currently being auctioned on eBay, with the seller describing it thus: "You are bidding on a beautifully preserved field pilot badge from 1913." Buyer beware!
  2. I've never seen one for sale, but I'd love to! Only 107 White Rose orders with swords have been awarded since 1919, so they are extremely rare. Your best bet would probably be trying to find one in Germany, because the majority of recipients were foreigners who received the order in WW2. Only a handful of Finns got one. Most of them were generals who received the commander's cross for service in WW2 and were not eligible for a higher class of the Order of the Cross of Liberty. Probably the best known lower ranking officer to get one was the fighter ace Jorma Sarvanto, who received his kn
  3. I'm also curious to see what exactly you have acquired, because I have never heard of a Mannerheim Cross 1st class being sold anywhere. That makes the authenticity of such a piece highly doubtful, in my humble opinion. I remember the last time a 2nd class cross (which are much more common than the 1st class) was sold at an auction. It was reported in newspapers, so it really is a rare event. But then the Mannerheim Cross itself is something special in Finland. The cross and its knights symbolize the struggle for independence of a whole nation.
  4. Unfortunately there are plenty of fake Austro-Hungarian badges out there in the market. In fact, I've seen many more fakes than real pieces being offered since I became interested in these badges. Most of the fakes are also very badly produced. I have yet to see a convincing fake Zimbler mark, but that doesn't mean they don't exist. So a buyer really must do his or her research before getting such a badge.
  5. They are indeed horribly ugly compared to originals. And it would be simple to spot the details that make them fakes with only a bit of research. Unfortunately not all collectors do that.
  6. Yes, only two such crosses have been awarded, the first one to Marshal Mannerheim himself and the second one to Finnish Chief of the General Staff, General Erik Heinrichs. Neither one is for sale, and as far as I know, they are the only 1st class crosses ever made. There's also an extra challenge for collectors not living in Finland trying to acquire a Mannerheim Cross. The Finnish law considers them as objects of special historical value, and if you are planning to take such a cross outside the country legally, you would need a permit from the government. I imagine getting one would be a
  7. I've found another type of Zimbler fake. Notice the enamel, the shape of the eagle, and of course the mark on its reverse. Buyer beware!
  8. I've found another type of fake Zimbler badge: The seller of this badge was honest and openly admitted it is not an original Zimbler, and the price he asked for it was not high. All sellers are not as honest, so buyer beware, as always! I'm sure this is not the only badge of its kind available in the collector market.
  9. Hi Elmar and thanks for your reply! So he had some kind of a workshop? Then it sounds like quite a few people must have acquired these copy badges over the years in their collections. Buyer beware!
  10. Interestingly, I found another similar badge being sold on eBay. There are now two of them from two different sellers. Apparently, this one was acquired from Germany in the 1970s. So this type of fake Zimbler badge has been around for a while.
  11. Thanks for your opinions! Then it is as suspected - the badge is a collector's copy. I wonder if they already used fake Zimbler marks in the interwar years, or is it a later practice?
  12. Hello, I requested a close-up. Does it help at all with identifying?
  13. Hi Tifes and thanks for your reply! Unless I'm mistaken, Zimbler went out of business soon after the war, so that would definitely make this a suspicious badge. I know that former Austrian pilots purchased privately made badges for themselves and also wore them in the post-Great War decades, but why would another firm use the name of Zimbler on the eagle? So I agree that this is probably a later collector's copy, albeit of a very high quality.
  14. Gentlemen, What do you think of this field pilot's badge? Could this be a wartime badge or a private purchase? Or maybe even a more recent fake? IMO, it doesn't quite look like the officially awarded Zimbler badges, but I'm not an expert in such items, just interested in their design. It's not mine, so I have only these two photos of it.
  15. Hi Demir and thanks a lot, that's really helpful. I'll start with the books first.
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