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#1 hawkdriver

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Posted 04 May 2009 - 09:08 AM

I picked this shovel up in a grouping and am not familiar with it. The shovel is marked US EMP Co. The cover has no markings and is remineicent of the old German covers. There are no markings, but it has a 1910 style hangar, and the pull the dot snap is written in english. I don't know if they go together, however, they fit very well together. Any help would be appreciated.

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#2 Andrei

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Posted 04 May 2009 - 09:13 AM

The carrier is German Bwh and doesnt fit this unknown to me shovel. The german shovel is a folding one like the US M43 that the US copied from the Germans during WW2.

#3 earlymb

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Posted 04 May 2009 - 10:22 AM

Actually, the cover is Dutch. The shovel is unknown to me.

Greetz ;)

David

#4 Keith

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Posted 04 May 2009 - 11:01 AM

I have a shovel exactly like that one. Mine is marked "U.S." over "E.M.P.CO. 1945". I have written on the tag: NON-FOLDING, MADE FOR CARRYING ON VEHICLES". I don't recall where I got that information or if it is accurate. Hope this helps.

#5 BOLO

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Posted 04 May 2009 - 11:17 AM

http://cgi.ebay.com/...emZ110315593726

I think it could be a rare USMC fixed shovel?
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WW2 USMC FIXED HANDLE SHOVEL '45 DATED marine corp WWII

WW2 USGI WORLD WAR TWO ISSUE USMC - MARINE CORP - RARE FIXED HANDLE SHOVEL -
I HAVE SEEN OLD PHOTOGRAPHS OF US MARINES USING THESE DURING THE BATTLES OF IWO JIMA AND OKINAWA
YOU DONT SEE THESE EVERY DAY ! -
NOT YOUR TYPICAL WWII FOLDING E TOOL - THIS HAS A FIXED WOODEN HANDLE JUST LIKE THE WORLD WAR ONE ERA ENTRENCHING SHOVEL, BUT MADE without THE 'T' HANDLE.

MARKED U.S. E.M.P. CO. 1945 -

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Edited by BOLO, 04 May 2009 - 11:20 AM.


#6 Andrei

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Posted 04 May 2009 - 11:49 AM

Actually, the cover is Dutch. The shovel is unknown to me.

Greetz ;)

David

Dutch... of course ! I stand corrected ! :)

#7 Nack

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Posted 04 May 2009 - 12:07 PM

http://cgi.ebay.com/...emZ110315593726

I think it could be a rare USMC fixed shovel?
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


This is far afield from my limited sphere of knowledge, but shouldn't a USMC-specific shovel be marked USMC rather than US?

#8 hawkdriver

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Posted 04 May 2009 - 12:26 PM

This is far afield from my limited sphere of knowledge, but shouldn't a USMC-specific shovel be marked USMC rather than US?



You have a good point, I don't know. It would seem that whatever it turns out to be, it's worth more than the $10 I had on it as an "unknown" shovel. I was getting it ready for the KC show and would have made someone really happy.

#9 craig_pickrall

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Posted 04 May 2009 - 01:19 PM

I have seen pics of Marines carrying the M43 folding shovel in an open position using the M1910 shovel cover. I have never seen anything on a shovel like this other than at a surplus store. I think these are made up by the surplus trade from spare parts.

I would love to see a period pic of these carried by Marines or even in a vehicle. Any body got any pics?

#10 Keith

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Posted 04 May 2009 - 04:11 PM

Being a 1945 dated product it could have been a new model which didn't make it to the field due to the War ending. I see it could be a cost savings manufacture with the non folding head like the m1910 but with a straight handle like the m1943; much cheaper to produce. Another positive feature is that the back has the pronounced back bone of the m1943 head and has the exact same hole pattern as the m1943 head and in fact is a m1943 head and a m1943 handle (same length, same diameter) with the only difference being the bracket that attaches the handle to the head and that had to be made specifically for the head to match up with the existing hole pattern??? Picture shows the straight head on top and the folding head on the bottom.
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#11 craig_pickrall

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Posted 04 May 2009 - 06:53 PM

The folding shovel wasn't just made to be compact but was intended to also replace the pick by folding the blade at a 90 degree angle. The photos you show comparing the two types really answers the question. They are the same parts in both except for the joint that attaches them together. These parts were available for years on the surplus market, both blades and handles. In fact I have 3 or 4 of the handles "just in case". Some enterprising surplus distributor could not sell the parts but could make shovels and sell them. I never saw the joints as a surplus item, just blades and handles, so I think that determined what shovel was made.

#12 hawkdriver

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Posted 05 May 2009 - 12:38 AM

The folding shovel wasn't just made to be compact but was intended to also replace the pick by folding the blade at a 90 degree angle. The photos you show comparing the two types really answers the question. They are the same parts in both except for the joint that attaches them together. These parts were available for years on the surplus market, both blades and handles. In fact I have 3 or 4 of the handles "just in case". Some enterprising surplus distributor could not sell the parts but could make shovels and sell them. I never saw the joints as a surplus item, just blades and handles, so I think that determined what shovel was made.


The only thing that bothers me about this theory is that we have three people now that have or have seen the same manufacture name on this type of e-tool. Look at the rivets, it's not a hatchet job and the handles look like they were made for these blades. If these are all a fantasy shovel of an industrious surplus dealer, that man should be given a knock off bronze star. I have several folders of the period, when I get back from vacation, I will compare them against this shovel.

#13 craig_pickrall

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Posted 05 May 2009 - 01:10 AM

We aren't talking about a local mom and pop surplus store. We are talking a large distributor that bought the entire production of a company that shut down a major contract at the close of the war. Every one of these shovels so far has been the same company and all are dated 1945. There were many of these companies around the country. They had assembly lines to turn parts or convert other items into something that would sell on the civilian market. Something else to remember is the civilian population was in serious need of these products after so many years of rationing.

There was so much of this material available it was still coming out of Gov't warehouses in the 1970's and 80's. The manufacturers cleaned out their inventories much sooner though. It may have been the company that had the Gov't contract that made these for the civilian market.

As always everyone has their own thoughts and beliefs. I am just trying to help some of the younger collectors keep from spending a lot of money on what they may think is a "rare" item.

#14 hawkdriver

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Posted 05 May 2009 - 03:39 AM

I did not know that there were companies doing that. It makes sense though. There is a surplus store down the road from me that I have visited since I was a kid. Every time I went in, there was an old man up in the loft with a sewing machine working away like he was in a sweat shop, never knew what he was doing, but having been on this board for awhile now, I think I am getting a clue.
Thanks craig.

#15 Sgt Brown

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Posted 05 May 2009 - 05:54 AM

For what little it is worth, I was once shown one of these shovels and told they were special made for Graves Registration. The guy who told me, however, was a known con artist.

Tom http://www.usmilitar...tyle_emoticons/default/thumbsup.gif

#16 Keith

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Posted 05 May 2009 - 07:21 AM

Hawkdriver. I think you and I should keep our shovels for awhile. They are not worth anything as surplus put-togethers; they don't take up much room; they don't eat anything and there is a possibility that these may be identified, someday, for what they truly are....and then we will be one of few to have one and they will be worth lots of money! Regards.

#17 craig_pickrall

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Posted 05 May 2009 - 08:13 AM

Keith, there is only one problem with that theory. Remember you can take any M43 apart and make one of the rare versions. The fakers will be the ones getting rich. Another good idea is to buy up all of the M43's now why they are still cheap so you can convert them later to rare versions.

#18 Keith

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Posted 05 May 2009 - 08:26 AM

Keith, there is only one problem with that theory. Remember you can take any M43 apart and make one of the rare versions. The fakers will be the ones getting rich. Another good idea is to buy up all of the M43's now why they are still cheap so you can convert them later to rare versions.

Craig, I am too old and lazy to be that enterprising! I attach a photo of the bracket used to fit the handle to the head. Would a surplus "factory" have these brackets stamped out just so they can use up handles and heads? There is no doubt that the brackets were designed to fit the m1943 head and handle. Why not repro the original folding head style bracket and use up the heads and handles that way? I still am unconvinced that they are not legitimate. And seriously, why sell such a shovel for pennys when it creates such good conversation? Regards.
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#19 craig_pickrall

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Posted 05 May 2009 - 09:35 AM

The part that you show is a simple light weight stamping. There are many shops that could produce that part fairly easily. During the post war wind down if you needed say 100,000 of that piece you could get them for 1 or 2 cents a piece probably. The part to make the shovel fold requires a heavy stamping that is more expensive and also a casting that is still more expensive. The idea wasn't to create a perfect product but to find the cheapest way possible to dispose of surplus parts. When the production shut down the tooling which was owned by the Gov't was most likely returned to them. The parts left behind were the already made blades and handles. Either the manufacturer or someone they sold the parts to wanted to make a usable, cheap shovel. When finished they probably had less than 10 cents in the product and it sold for $1.50 or $2.00 retail. If it was going directly from the maker to the seller then that wasn't a bad mark up but if there was a wholeseller in the mix then the spread is kind of narrow.

In 1970 I was the lead engineer for the hardware line at Disston, Inc. I remember the D28 / D96 was the top of the line handsaw that we made. At that time it cost us 50 cents total cost for the finished product and the retail price was $28.00. That is a 56 to 1 ratio compared to only a 20 to 1 ratio for the shovel example above.

#20 hawkdriver

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Posted 05 May 2009 - 12:57 PM

I think I will just put the "unknown" tag back on mine.

#21 kphfun

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Posted 05 May 2009 - 02:50 PM

Keith, there is only one problem with that theory. Remember you can take any M43 apart and make one of the rare versions. The fakers will be the ones getting rich. Another good idea is to buy up all of the M43's now why they are still cheap so you can convert them later to rare versions.

:lol:

#22 Keith

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Posted 05 May 2009 - 03:54 PM

?

Edited by Keith, 05 May 2009 - 03:57 PM.


#23 boyt44

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Posted 13 January 2010 - 09:16 PM

I'm just bumping this to accompany my "oddball shovel" thread. I guess my only question is: " has anyone seen an E M P Co. folding shovel?" Was EMP a very late-war supplier who tooled up to make folding shovels,only to have their contract terminated abruptly in August/Set 1945, and slapped these together to try to recover some of their losses?

#24 pararaftanr2

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Posted 16 March 2010 - 07:38 AM

Guys,
I was reading a recent post by Justin in the Uniforms section about his War Aid jungle jacket and ran across this reply by J_Andrews: "W.A. items were also made for the USSR -- Soviet-style garments made with American materials, fittings, buttons, etc. I once had a pair of breeches in O.D. serge, a gymnasterka pull-over shirt in khaki cotton, and and overcoat (with no buttons, just hook-and-eye closures). Also an M1943 ET with no folding capability, painted "park bench green" in a tent canvas sleeve. A fellow collector had two pictures from 1945, New Cumberland army depot PA, with Soviet W,A. items on display and a GI modeling a gymnasterka, breeches and pilotka overseas cap all in HBT. His belt seemed to be made of the same webbing as used for Garand slings, with black roller buckle."
Might this be a clue about these unknown shovels that keep popping up? The one I've had for years, which I was always told was USMC, still has some remaining original paint which fits his "park bench green" description. Does anyone have more information on, or possibly photos of, Soviet W.A. field gear showing a shovel? Regards, Paul

#25 boyt44

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Posted 16 March 2010 - 11:07 AM

That's an interesting idea,but would War Aid to the Soviet Union be marked "US"? . These shovels interest me,as I have one,and have a friend with another just like it-they are really not that uncommon. I would be more inclined to believe they were "put-togethers" if some appeared with Ames or Woods blades, or if someone could show an "EMP Co. 1945" M43 folding shovel. I don't think a private contractor would be marking something "US" for sale to the public. Hopefully, someday some real information on these shovels will emerge.


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