Vintage French paratrooper dagger

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kwackster
Posts: 172
Joined: Mon May 15, 2017 8:07 pm

Vintage French paratrooper dagger

Post by kwackster » Wed May 15, 2019 4:49 pm

My latest find is this original first model French paratrooper dagger from the 1950's and/or 1960's.
On the steel guard it reads "Poignard de Combat" and "Special Beret Rouge", which translates into something like: "combat poniard for red berets"

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Specs:

Overall length: 11.89 inches (30.2 cm)
Blade length: 7.08 inches (18.0 cm)
Max blade thickness: 4.82 mm
Steel type: drop-forged carbon steel
Handle materials: steel guard with blackened brass handle (can be disassembled)
Sheath: black leather
Weight without sheath: 261.7 grams
Weight with sheath: 300 grams

gravknife
Posts: 1042
Joined: Fri Dec 11, 2015 9:34 pm

Re: Vintage French paratrooper dagger

Post by gravknife » Wed May 15, 2019 6:42 pm

Absolute beauty kwackster.

I wish I would have acquired one of these many moons ago as they are becoming quite expensive where I can shop.

Very similar to the Fairbairn Sykes Commando dagger with slight changes ...the squashed diamond and slightly different hilt.
I always thought these had stainless blades rather than Carbon so thanks for the specifucations.

Cool knife my freind ...I for one appreciate the pictures as I love fighting knives.

Hope your well .

gravknife

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whippersnapper
Posts: 6766
Joined: Sat Oct 16, 2004 12:39 pm
Location: Michigan

Re: Vintage French paratrooper dagger

Post by whippersnapper » Wed May 15, 2019 11:36 pm

8) Nice find!

kwackster
Posts: 172
Joined: Mon May 15, 2017 8:07 pm

Re: Vintage French paratrooper dagger

Post by kwackster » Thu May 16, 2019 12:04 pm

Hi Ian,

What would you consider quite expensive ?
Where i live these French daggers are very hard to find (in any condition, but especially the well preserved first generation versions like this one), so i just tend to follow the ancient Dutch proverb: "better expensive than not for sale at all". 8)

Now i also want to find it's brother, the French Green Beret dagger (Poignard de Combat Berets Verts), which looks even more like the Fairbairn Sykes model, but just like my Red Beret dagger has a bit sturdier build quality compared to those, as well as a different sheath.

Pics from the net:
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BTW: later versions of all these knives indeed had stainless blades afaik.
Mine not only had a patina on the blade but also patches of red rust on the tang under the brass handle (which is all gone now)

The main reason my Red Beret dagger looks like it was never used or even carried is the fact that it had only rudimentary edge bevels that weren't even apexed, and it also only had a narrow rounded section where originally a sharp point is supposed to be.
My guess is that it must have slipped the final quality control, or the worker just didn't care enough.
So i used my Tormek T7 wet sharpener and a special home made jig to create what looks like narrow factory bevels nicely coming together in a symmetric and needlesharp point, making it fully functional again while at the same time preserving that untouched appearance so it looks like nothing was done to the knife.
Anyway, i'm very pleased with the result myself.

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