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And here's Bernhard Reddemann in the background, the big guy with a notebook and pencil, his overcoat on his shoulder. The flamethrower is the Kleif M.1914. Notice that he doesn't have a Totenkopf sle

IR92 tankard lid............

Brunswick HR17 flask...............(with Prussian skull !!)

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Beautiful badge. Too bad real ones never come up for sale.

This is the only contemporary photo I know of showing a Heuschkel badge in any detail. It's from the von Salomon Freikorps book, dating to the 1930s.

Edited by Robin Lumsden
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I've posted a closeup of this image before, but here's the full photo of a former flamethrower pioneer (standing) who was a member of Minenwerfer-Detachment-Heuschkel when this photo was taken. Interestingly, the kneeling man with the mustache on the right is also a former flamethrower pioneer, reinforcing the Flammenwerfer-Minenwerfer-Totenkopf relationship.

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Here's the mustached man when he was a member of the III. Garde-Pionier-Bataillon during the war. I wonder why Minenwerfer-Detachment-Heuschkel had so many former flamethrower pioneers? It could be because the commander was a former member of Pionier-Bataillon Nr. 29, which worked with Bernhard Reddemann on flamethrower development before the war and was the first German unit to use flamethrowers in combat. Maybe Heuschkel knew a lot of these flamethrower pioneers personally and recruited them into his Freikorps after the war...

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  • 1 month later...

As this has turned into a mega rocka-rolla thread with fingers in every pie, I took the liberty of adjusting the title to show the scope of it all...

Good move!

So that means the black TK that started it all is definitely flammenwerfer, after all! :cheers:

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Thomas!

I thought, that you could be interested to see this photo....

That's a French Schilt No. 2 flamethrower. The poor men who used it had to carry it into battle using that wooden frame. The lance had no trigger or valve, so the way it was used was that the men carrying it had put it down on the ground. One man would throw incendiary grenades at the target, and then the second man would open the valve on the oil tank so that the lance operator could spray the oil at the flaming grenades. A second ignition method was to put small fuses on the end of the lance, but these only lasted for five seconds.

This was a terrible weapon. In 1916 the French wisely changed the designation from "portable" to static, thus sparing the lives of the men who were assigned to use it.

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PS - Still only two of these blackies have ever appeared on the market.............not the 'deluge' that was expected. Both from the same source.

Being serious (again) for a brief moment, the workmanship and age on the black skull I have (yours will be the same, Stefan), is such that I am totally convinced that it is a period original. And I often take some convincing, I can assure you. :cheeky:

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PS - Still only two of these blackies have ever appeared on the market.............not the 'deluge' that was expected. Both from the same source.

The only other black skull which I have seen during last months is that one. wink.gif

blackz.jpg

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PS - Still only two of these blackies have ever appeared on the market.............not the 'deluge' that was expected. Both from the same source.

Being serious (again) for a brief moment, the workmanship and age on the black skull I have (yours will be the same, Stefan), is such that I am totally convinced that it is a period original. And I often take some convincing, I can assure you. :cheeky:

Hi

The theory that a fake always comes in bunches hold water when a mould or die is made...the faker can chug out badge after badge...

when someone has to do everything by hand (like in this case) the person making them can do one.... or two.... or more... or not....

Basically it is like "print on demand", I never expected a deluge... maybe the maker calculated the effort needed and what he got for them.. then stopped after 2.

Workmanship did not die in 1918... everytime I am in Norhtern Ontario I visit an old lady who belongs to a patchwork circle... a bunch of old ladies who sit around doinf neddlework... any one of them makes stuff more complicated than this.

material... no problem. A faker does not have to MAKE cloth... old cloth can be found at any flea market.

I think this is an interesting piece, but if its good or not will be left to each to decide if he believes it or not.

I am also not convinced by the black and white photos... it is all guesswork and supposing one ma be a different color.

The argument has been used on the forums that one cannot tell how many german helmets were cammo in 1918 because black and white hides the shades... if that is so.. then a small badge is even harder!!

There may be a proof out there that this is real, I will be the first to admit it IF it happens... but the above arguments dont swing it for me ;-)

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Workmanship did not die in 1918... everytime I am in Norhtern Ontario I visit an old lady who belongs to a patchwork circle... a bunch of old ladies who sit around doinf neddlework... any one of them makes stuff more complicated than this.

We all know the dark skills of grannies! Handmade items. You can produce everything with the right materials and a grandmother. That is correct. In most cases you can never be sure, that handmade items are 100% real.

PS: The black skulls are not the only handmade items in collections out there........2014.gif

Edited by Sergeant 08
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