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BryanJ

Second Pattern Fairbairn Sykes - Questions

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I’m looking at a couple of FS knives that are for sale locally.  One I think is a legit WWII second pattern.  Blade is blued, there is the v shaped notch on the blade where it goes through the guard.  The guard has “England” stamped on it.  No other markings.  The handle appears to be brass,  not the alloy from a third pattern.  The blade does not have the Wilkerson etchings.  My question is, did all second patterns have the Wilkerson etching?  I’ve looked at the various FS websites, and I think knife is legit, but don’t want to buy if not right.  No photos unfortunately.  Any tips I might look for in the knife to verify?  The other knife appears to be Nickle, it has the Wilkerson etchings on both sides of the blade, but the condition appears to be too good and must be a reproduction.  I will probably pass on it, just too good to be true.  Did Wilkerson make a later tribute first pattern Nickle knife, or were they just faked?

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I hope you've spent time on the stickie about FS knives in this forum, lots of good information.  Also doing a web search will turn up several decent sites on the knife.  They are heavily reproduced, and while the third type is the most numerous, they have reproduced the first and second types as well.  The knife is a mine field unless you really have studied it.  Even to the point that the hand-ground indications (the little triangles on the blade just above the guard) have been reproduced as well.  The FS type 2's were rebuild during the war and the etchings either covered up or removed during the rebuilding.  The ENGLAND mark indicates the export of the knife after WW2 as there were 100's of thousands sent to the US for sale.  By the way, I've seen reproductions with ENGLAND marks on ebay.  If you want a good lesson in reproductions, go through the offerings on ebay.

Good luck.


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Thorin6.  This morning, I was able visit the local auction company to take a look at both the second pattern FS knife that I was interested in, and which I thought was possibly legit, and the nickel plated knife which I suspected was a reproduction.  Both appeared to be reproductions.  The second pattern was “manufactured” to the extent that it did have the guard notch, “England” stamped on the guard, and they did a remarkable job of faking the sheath.  From the photos I thought the sheath was correct, but in handling it, it was only recently manufactured.  The nickel plated knife was a bad reproduction.  The local auction company sells a lot of militaria via their on-line auction site.  They sell so much German WWII stuff, it makes me wonder how much of it is also reproduced and where they get the quantity of the stuff they sell.  I’ve collected military firearms for years, and have only started picking up a few knives.  I appreciate the advice, well received.  Thanks

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Glad you could see them in person.  In the stickie in this forum I've posted my two FS knives, a type two and a type three.  I took a long time to get the type two, but I picked up the type three after an intense evening of study of several websites, a book I have, and looking at the knives on ebay.  Keep looking and you will eventually find the one you want; good luck.


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I’ve already got a third pattern that’s in pretty good shape, to include the sheath.  It’s one of the late 1943 knives made by Wilkerson for the India contract.  And, I’ve been keeping my eye out for a deal on a first and second pattern, but they are so expensive.  Anyway, thanks for the help.  

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