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Nothing is simple ..
A thousand shades of gray? Or is it grey?
I found out that "both" spellings are correct.
Gray is used primarily in the US ..
Grey is used primarily in the UK ..
My own thoughts are that these were made for children , weve seen in the past childrens helmets/ rifles etc for sale , and i can see these being brought as presents with the child told that when you are older you can join the DJ/HJ and have the real thing, all hypothetical of course , when these hit the market it would have been logical to link them to the DJ/BDM,when i see a picture of one in wear i will eat this post
Here's another one that has just come up on the Collectors Guild, described as a scarce DJ variant knife. This one is $400 cheaper than the last plain, un-adorned one I saw on another dealers site, but that one was in better condition.
The Collector's Guild
Just another quick observation - if the version with the diamond on the scabbard was made specifically for an event or an organisation, it would be logical through the manufacturing process to place the diamond on first, then insert the runners and rivet, thus preventing any paint damage to the rivet area. I believe, if we accept that all of this type seen so far have paint damage at the rivet, then logically it could be concluded they were added as an afterthought for some reason.
Has anyone seen many with the diamond in the grip plate?
Through my email discussions with LTC (Ret) Thomas M. Johnson, I also had some correspondence with Mr Ron Weinand. He has given me permission to post his reply to my questions.
Before I do that, a reminder to those interested that these knives will be a topic at the upcoming MAX Show Seminar. The show is being held at the Monroe Convention Center, 2-3 October, Monroeville, PA.
I have been buying Third Reich militaria from veterans for many years, to be exact over fifty. During this time I have bought four of the "DJ" style Hitler Youth Knives. All were in mint to near mint condition showing no previous use by the Germans.
Most of the veterans couldn't remember where they found them, but all did state that they were new and unused when they obtained them. All of the ones I found had the HJ Diamond on the scabbard obverse. None were maker marked.
Now, it is widely known that this style knife WAS available from Solingen manufacturers sans the HJ Diamond and in the same form that we all see from time to time at shows. Some were aluminum hilt and some, especially from Klaas, came with the steel plated hilt. Klaas is KNOWN to have produced this same knife post war in its catalog.
My belief, based on the number of mint "DJ" knives found and the odd number of "bowie blade style" HJ Knives found from WKC, is that when supplies became limited and the demand for HJ Knives continued, certain Solingen manufacturers just converted remaining supplies to cover the HJ demand with "unofficial" style HJ Knives. I believe that this is what we are encountering. No such thing as a BDM or DJ knife in my opinion.
Also, other than the Puma Party Day Knife, I am unsure as to the originality of the other group of HJ style knives with embellished blades. I have NEVER bought such a knife from a veteran and don't know of any that came directly out of the veteran's hands to date. This is just an opinion, not cut in stone.
Ron's take makes most sense but only four after 50 years of motel buys and where they in fact vet bring backs. They buy allot stuff from walkins they know nothing about.
Ref the enhanced knives mine came straight out of the vets hands with all his other treasures my first big buy in CALGARY Alberta 1970
Thanks for posting this russ
this is an intresting insight from a well respected collector /historian of TR daggers , and the point regarding Klass daggers being made post war is also of intrest were these maker marked ?
I believe the Klaas knives were maker marked, but I stand to be corrected.
Ron's take also raises some more questions in my mind. The point I raise has to do with the limited supplies of HJ knives. There are many examples of mint, un-issued HJ knives with, from memory, varying RZM maker control labels on them. So, there must have been a lot of un-issued HJ's around at wars end. Unless some manufacturers were favoured more heavily than others, I am not sure about these being adopted as replacements for a knife that was still available in large numbers from some manufacturers. The same with SA, SS, Luftwaffe and Army daggers - we don't see any significant variations of design style towards the end of production as radical as we see with this one. This take also pre-supposes the knives already existed in an un-adorned state, at this point for reasons still un-known, which I believe to be correct.
One other point - if these were issued as replacements for a sanctioned item, I would expect there should be thousands of these knives, with the diamond on the scabbard, still in existence. And with Mr Weinand's vast number of hotel buys and decades of collecting, he has only encountered four of this style, which to me, is a ponderable statistic. I don't take issue with Mr Weinand's opinion, nor anyone else's, just that different theories always raise more questions!