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WW2 Glider Wings: Real?


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Hello,

 

I was recently looking at these auctions, and I have to say that the wings do NOT make me happy. I think they are rather nice cast copies of glider pilot wings with a fantasy hallmark. It is always hard to know for sure without handling them, but I noticed that this dealer was selling a handful of really questionable wings. Sorry.

 

Patrick

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I would agree with Patrick that these look cast to me. There seems to be some pitting in the back of the shield and the lines on the shield in front have some soft spots in the middle and don't continue all the way to the sides of the shield. Also of note, the pin and catch are reversed from what you normally see. The hing is usually on the right hand side of the wing as you look at it from the back and the catch is usually on the left. Beverlycraft is one maker that did use the left to right pin arrangement but this does not look like a Beverlycraft pattern or their palm tree hallmark.

 

Bob

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Has I stated on the other thread, I think these are cast, and I wouldn't buy them. ( Agreeing with Bob and Patrick)

Paul Conrad
Still looking for quality wings!

www.conradwings.com
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I am bored prefixing everything I say with "I think" or "in my opinion".
Everything I say is my opinion; the only thing of which I am certain is that there is very little of which one can be certain.

 


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  • 2 months later...

Most WW2 wings were cast so you can't judge them by that. They are hard to judge from the photographs.... I can't

make out the stamping on the rear.... can you?

 

Hello,

 

I boght these recently on a B-13 jacket and wonder if they are real. Your help and opinions are encouraged. Thank you for your help in advance.

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Most WW2 wings were cast so you can't judge them by that. They are hard to judge from the photographs.... I can't

make out the stamping on the rear.... can you?

I disagree. Most WWII wings were die stamped, not cast.

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I believe most were investment or injection castings.... some Gaunts may have been stamped.

Overseas... some wings may have been hammered out to order by craftsmen.... others

may have been made with crude castings molds.

 

I disagree. Most WWII wings were die stamped, not cast.
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I believe most were investment or injection castings.... some Gaunts may have been stamped.

Overseas... some wings may have been hammered out to order by craftsmen.... others

may have been made with crude castings molds.

Dear 101

 

Almost all American wings (and for that matter insignia and medals) from the earliest badges to the most recent were made by die stamping. In a manner similar to making a coin or medal, a blank piece of metal was stamped into a mold. This process imparts certain characteristics to the wing, such as shear marks on the edges and a crispness in detail that is hard to fake with other methods (such as making a casting).

 

In the minority are a few wings that were made in some of the more "rustic" theaters of operation (such as the CBI) where the traditional die stamping techniques were not used. Some of these wings were hand carved, chased and cut from metal blanks (John C has an example on another thread) and in some rare cases, wings were cast using a mold. These type of wings also have characteristics that define their manufacturing technique, such as (in the case of hand made wings), saw and chisel marks, and (in the case of cast wings), pits and impurities in the metal and a "softness" in detail.

 

Up until recently, the easiest way to fake a wing was to make a mold from a good wing, and cast out the reproductions. Sometimes fake or fantasy hallmarks are added to these wings to increase their value or to try to fool the unaware. This wing, has those characteristics. It is clearly a cast from a mold of another wing (perhaps the AMICO glider pilot wing). The hallmark is some sort of fantasy mark. This wing is intended to confuse and fool collectors. Also, because it is a cast copy, I would bet dollars for donuts that this wing is a fraction smaller than a real AMICO wing.

 

Most wing collectors learn pretty early to look for the characteristics of a cast wing (like this one). Over the past 20 years or so, newer types of reproductions have been showing up in which someone gets the original dies (or has new ones cut) and then churns out die struck reproductions. the NS Meyer restrikes are a classic example of that.

 

Hope that helps.

 

Patrick

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The wing is cast, I know I made it. But the hallmark is real. I own the original of this wing and it was made by Balfour for me. The hallmark is what they used in the 1970's. It was their modern hallmark.

Joe

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What type of casting did they use.... do you know?

 

The wing is cast, I know I made it. But the hallmark is real. I own the original of this wing and it was made by Balfour for me. The hallmark is what they used in the 1970's. It was their modern hallmark.

Joe

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pfrost is correct in his above statements that ALL US made wings and Insignia are die struck(in fact there is a thread with a US Naval Aviator Die somewhere in the Wings section so you can see what we mean) Joe *************** cast this wing as he does all of his reproductions which helps to set them apart from the real die struck wings from the war. Also if you compare the size of a genuine wing and a cast copy of that exact same wing(that was used to make the mold) you will discover a 6-7% size reduction. This is a common and so far unstopable (fortunately) byproduct of casting.

 

 

 

Cheers

Gary

What type of casting did they use.... do you know?

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"YOU CAN NEVER HAVE TOO MUCH RED WINE, TOO MANY BOOKS, OR TOO MUCH AMMUNITION."

Rudyard Kipling

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Most of my wings are shown at www.1903.com, so you can use this as a guide to see which wings I am currently making. If you want a complete catalog of everything e-mail me (mrmac@aol.com) your e-mail address and I will sent it to you.

 

About the 6-7% reduction, actually now it is closer to 2%.

 

Also you are incorrect that all are die struck some insignia were cast and today I have found new items that are cast. Mess Dress HALO badges currently available in clothing sales are die cast.

 

Joe

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Hi Joe,

 

What insignia were cast back in the '40s? And who was it that made them? I can understand the current specialised insignia being cast as it is way cheaper to do but back then? Also how have you been able to reduce the shrinkage so much? That sounds very interesting.

 

 

Cheers

Gary

Most of my wings are shown at www.1903.com, so you can use this as a guide to see which wings I am currently making. If you want a complete catalog of everything e-mail me (mrmac@aol.com) your e-mail address and I will sent it to you.

 

About the 6-7% reduction, actually now it is closer to 2%.

 

Also you are incorrect that all are die struck some insignia were cast and today I have found new items that are cast. Mess Dress HALO badges currently available in clothing sales are die cast.

 

Joe

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"YOU CAN NEVER HAVE TOO MUCH RED WINE, TOO MANY BOOKS, OR TOO MUCH AMMUNITION."

Rudyard Kipling

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You hit the nail on the head..... much cheaper process in comparison to casting. Some die struck processes took up to 18 steps for a finished wing.... sometimes being die struck three times with finer and finer detail each time. Between each process there was also a heat treatment..... not a simple process.

 

Hi Joe,

 

What insignia were cast back in the '40s? And who was it that made them? I can understand the current specialised insignia being cast as it is way cheaper to do but back then? Also how have you been able to reduce the shrinkage so much? That sounds very interesting.

Cheers

Gary

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