Original German WWII HJ Knife with Scabbard by Rare Maker Carl Julius Krebs - RZM M7/5

Item Description

Original Item: Only One Available. This is an very nice service used example of the classic later pattern HJ Knife, which looks to have had the blade nickel plated during service. It was produced by the rare maker Carl Julius Krebs, Kronenkrebs-Stahlwarenfabrik (Crown Crab Steelware Factory), based in Solingen, Germany, the legendary "City of Blades". This maker was founded in 1866, and formally registered with Solingen authorities in 1899. During the early war period they usually used their CROWN / K trademark logo in various forms, switching later to RZM code M7/5. They continued trading long after WWII, per J. Anthony Carter's excellent book GERMAN KNIFE AND SWORD MAKERS. It comes complete with its original scabbard.

These knives were given to boys who were educated in the paramilitary organization, which they often continued to carry into their military service. Unlike the early pattern knives, these have a thicker blade with a raised ricasso, which significantly strengthened the blade. They also do not have the HJ motto etched on the blade, and often are marked not with a maker, but a German RZM Code.

The hilt of this example is plated zinc alloy, with the plating quite well retained. There is some wear through on the corners, and a bit of bubbling, which is quite common on the alloy hilted examples. The grip plates are the black checkered bakelite variety and are in very good condition, though they do show wear around the edges, and are somewhat loose, as they have shrunk over the years. They are retained by plated steel rivets with dressed obverse heads, which show light oxidation. The HJ grip insignia has almost full enamel, and the brass borders between the panels still show almost all of the original plating. It is loose in the grips, caused by the bakelite shrinking over the years, which also confirms authenticity.

The blade of this example is in very good condition, and looks to have seen moderate use before it was nickel plated. We can still see a lot of the factory final grind marks on the blade, as well as some areas of oxidation that were etched away prior to plating. The blade does not look to have been sharpened since it was plated, so that may mean it was done post war to preserve the item. The reverse ricasso is marked with the (RZM) logo next to M7 / 5.

The Reichszeugmeisterei, or RZM, was based at the Brown house in Munich and NSDAP party headquarters in Berlin. The RZM ensured that the manufacturers of military items were consistent in design, quality of materials and other characteristics of the items. It also defined standards of design, manufacturing and quality and published an authoritative color chart for textiles. The M7 in the code stands for knives/daggers, with Carl Julius Krebs being contractor number 5.

The scabbard is completely straight throughout with no dents, however it looks to have been repainted during service over a worn surface. this can easily been seen through the black enamel paint. The belt loop was originally black finished leather, but the finish is now worn, and the loop is almost torn through where it meets the scabbard. The securing strap is present, but both of the snap ends have broken off.

A service used German WWII HJ Knife in very nice collectible condition!

Approximate Measurements:
Blade Length: 5 5/8"
Blade Style: Single Edged Knife.
Overall length: 9 5/8”
Crossguard: 1 7/8"
Scabbard Length: 5 3/4”

HJ believed German youth to be the future of his 3rd Reich. The HJ (jugend) was formed officially in 1935, and with the exception of NSDAP ideology indoctrination was very similar to the Boy Scouts. Beginning at about the age of ten years, both boys (jugend) and girls (Bund Deutscher Mädel) were enlisted in the Party-run organization. The boys only were given HJ Knives after having passed minor exams. The knives had nickeled hilts with black checkered grip plates. The obverse plate was fitted with an enameled HJ swas insignia. Through 1937, these knives were etched with the motto of the organization, Blut und Ehre! (Blood and Honor!). Examples produced after this date were made with plain blades usually bearing an RZM marking.

The HJ Leaders were professionals in charge of the training and NSDAP education of the German Youth. They wore a special dagger consisting of silvered hilt fittings with blue-black leather-covered scabbard. The grip was composed of tightly wrapped silver wire, over a wood base. The pommel cap featured an HJ diamond on top, complete with swas. The upper scabbard fitting portrayed an open-winged HJ eagle with swas cut into the bird's chest. The blade was etched with the HJ motto, Blut und Ehre!

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