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The Great War (1914-1918) Forum

P.1907 Mole Bayonet


JMB1943
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I acquired a Mole 6 '16 bayonet recently, and it has some interesting markings.

Has the usual crown/M9/italic B with the broad arrow and the X-bend test stamp; one re-inspection date of (?)8.

The crown (only Mole bayonet I have handled) seems unusual in that it has very small spikes coming off of it (clearly struck).

The LHS crossguard has "446" (quite small, delicate; not like large Australian MD numbering) while the LHS pommel has "A over 465" (again smallish font) beneath the release knob. Yes, both numbers are clearly stamped and clearly different. The two strikings are upside down with respect to the Crown & 1907 on the ricasso.

Any thoughts ?

Regards,

JMB

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The crown (only Mole bayonet I have handled) seems unusual in that it has very small spikes coming off of it (clearly struck).

JMB,

There was a stamped version of the ' King's Crown ' which appears to have small spikes on top ( see attached ), which may be the type shown on your bayonet.

Regards,

LF

post-63666-0-39814900-1464209046_thumb.j

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Yes the Mole made bayonets have always had slightly different and more unusual looking stampings compared with the other makers which were made and inspected at other locations. Mole was located in Birmingham and their production was always inspected by Birmingham/Sparkbrook/BSA based inspectors. No Enfield inspectors were involved with the Mole production (in normal circumstaces)

Cheers, S>S

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Looking forward to photographs! I don't really collect P.1907's that much but it will be nice to see how these Mole markings look on one of those, and how they differ from the ones on P.1888's. No idea as to the markings / serials on your one, but again it will be nice to see those.

Perhaps stating the obvious, but the 'spikes' on the crown are, as I guess you know but others might not, representations of jewels on the quarter-arches linking the circlet to the cross, and are shown as dots on the front quarter-arch, as in LF's post above.

Trajan

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OK, here are photos (2) and 2 to follow

Regards,

JMB


Last 2 photos of Mole 6 '16

Regards,

JMB

EDIT: The 'spikes' on the crown that I referred to was in the inspection stamp "crown/M9/B italic"

post-104832-0-86597400-1464295857_thumb.

post-104832-0-61301100-1464295882_thumb.

post-104832-0-09228800-1464296076_thumb.

post-104832-0-41494300-1464296086_thumb.

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EDIT: The 'spikes' on the crown that I referred to was in the inspection stamp "crown/M9/B italic"

JMB,

I checked the Birmingham inspector's marks on my Mole July 1915 pattern 1907 bayonet, and the ' spiked ' crown and the ' Broad Arrow ' markings are the same ( see attached detail ).

Regards,

LF

post-63666-0-02271300-1464301515_thumb.j

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EDIT: The 'spikes' on the crown that I referred to was in the inspection stamp "crown/M9/B italic"

Ah, beg your pardon - usual chaos at home with the kids... Thanks for the photographs!

I checked the Birmingham inspector's marks on my Mole July 1915 pattern 1907 bayonet, and the ' spiked ' crown and the ' Broad Arrow ' markings are the same ( see attached detail ).

Thanks also for photographs!

Certainly, very distinctive markings. Weren't rifles made at BSA? If, so were the same type of inspection marks used there?

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LF,

That is a very nice-looking Mole (never mind the frog) !

It's reassuring to see consistent markings between the two blades. Mole has very formal broad arrow & X-bend marks, compared to the "seagulls" and sloppy X's that I see with other makers.

I wonder if that generalization is true for all of the Mole P. 07's.

Regards,

JMB

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JMB,

Only 60,000 Mole Pattern 1907 Sword Bayonets were produced, so they are quite scarce.

Regards,

LF

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I find it interesting that the pommel and cross guard bear different numbers, but neither has been lined through.

Also, can't find a unit that might be abbreviated to "A".

Just two more P. '07 mysteries.......

Regards,

JMB

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My 2

Nice examples, and again, clear original Birmingham inspection marks.

Regards,

LF

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The examples posted on this thread are in lovely condition. Some beautiful crisp markings too. Thanks for posting.

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5th Batt,

Thanks for posting your two here. I have read somewhere that Mole discontinued production of the P.07 during the war to concentrate on swords for the cavalry; can somebody corroborate this ?? It seemed strange given the conditions in F & F, but I suppose more likely for the Egyptian Exped. Force.

Your LHS photo shows 3 '16, but I cannot see the date of manufacture on the RHS one---is it clear in the hand ?

Regards,

JMB

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I have read somewhere that Mole discontinued production of the P.07 during the war to concentrate on swords for the cavalry; can somebody corroborate this ??

JMB,

Based on figures quoted by Skennerton & Richardson, that would not be correct.

They quote that by 1st April 1917, Mole's wartime Pattern 1907 Sword Bayonet production was 24,800, and with their total WW1 production of Pattern 1907 Sword Bayonets being 60,000, that appears to show that between April 2, 1917 and November 1918, Mole still produced a further 35,200 Pattern 1907 Sword Bayonets.

When they refer to Mole's ' wartime ' production, I assume they are referring to Mole production from August 1914.

They also quote Mole having made 13,308 Pattern 1907 Sword Bayonets by the end of 1911, so if we take those bayonets into account and deduct them from the total production figure of 60,000, it still leaves 21,892 Mole Pattern 1907 Sword Bayonets being produced between April 2, 1917 and the end of WW1.

Regards,

LF

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My 2

Very nice examples, and yes, fascinating markings. Also fascinating to see the difference between the two by which the transfer between the fuller and the blade-grind (the area above the edge) is accomplished...

...Your LHS photo shows 3 '16, but I cannot see the date of manufacture on the RHS one---is it clear in the hand ?

It is obscure - but I'll make a guess at '9 / 18 and so look forward to 5 Batt's reply!

Trajan

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It is 9 '18

:thumbsup: (breathes a sigh of relief...!)

Now, the other thing is, on 5Batt's post no. 13 - the difference between the two in the fuller / blade-grind / ricasso area... From the little I have seen, I guess that what we see on the LHS one is the more usual form on a MOLE? In fact, has anyone seen anything quite like what is on the RHS one???

Trajan

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Well, I came back to this thread today and had an aha !... moment. 5th Batt's enlargement did show 9 '18 and also a narrow line of brass where the blade meets the crossguard & a band of sharp lines between the brass and MOLE---the aha was that a large excess of brass had been filed off from the ricasso.

Then was looking on-line at a Wilkinson (5 '18), which also had a brass line and similar file marks but lacked the PALL MALL stamp that was usual post-mid 1916. The light then came on, and it was clear why all of those PALL MALL stamped '07's had apparently undergone an attempt to erase the PM.

LF--thanks for the Skennerton numbers; I know that I didn't dream the Mole story so will have to find it.

Trajan--good job we don't try to ID bayos by the fuller shape !!

Regards,

JMB

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You know, I did wonder about that 'golden line' but I never thought any further about it - very well spotted! That brazing mark on the ricasso has (brain slowly engages) been talked about somewhere on GWF... Was that the W Pall Mall example?

Yes, fullers Odd ones there... Over-generous grinding pre-sharpening?

Trajan

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That A marking... May be relevant, may not be... Yesterday at the Antika Pazar I saw a Lithgow P.1907, 5/20, with this on the pommel: "A / 61400'... No camera I'm afraid, but same type of font and same arrangement as yours, so a hint there that whatever the 'A' stands for, it may be post-1920 and could be Australian. No other markings on it, though, but I may have missed these as I had to work quickly through six very interesting bayonets before others moved in!

Trajan

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Trajan

I'm not up to date on this thread, but the pommel markings on Australian P07's clicked over to the A prefix in late 1918 (from memory). I try to only collect early(ish) WW1 bayonets so Im not really focussed on those with any letter prefix, but essentially they started with the A prefix in 1918 or thereabouts and then subsequently (interwar and WW2) progressed to B, C, D prefix's etc.

I could well be wrong, but that "A" marking posted above doesn't look like the equivalent Australian marking to me. S>S and others will be all over this, but thought Id throw out my thoughts in the meantime.

Cheers, Jonathan

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Thanks Jonathan... Certainly, it was one of those very few times when I had a 'Smart phone' instead of my battered Nokia which does make and receive phone calls and messages...!

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