Germany WW2 Paul Weyersberg paratrooper knife Fallschirmjäger-Messer “gravity knife”, late-war takedown 2nd model with all original parts. Relic condition but with all springs intact; mechanically 100% functional.
Scarce WW2 era German Luftwagffe/airborne units “Fallschirmjäger Messer” paratrooper “gravity” knife – this is the late-war production “all-carbon-steel” Fallschirmjäger-Messer specimen. According to the maker’s production code (R.B. No.) etched on the blade, this Model 2 type was made by Paul Weyersberg & Co. in Solingen, Germany. This is a pretty rare late-war takedown type but unfortunately it’s not in the best shape. The knife is a battlefield recovery item in relic condition; I guarantee it to be 100% original WW2 item or your money back. I had purchased it in 2016 in France; the knife was recovered in the Normandie-Maine national park in northern France (Falaise-Caen Pocket??). It was professionally cleaned, the bolster was cleaned of rust and re-blued; all other parts retain original finish. Looks like the last owner used the knife as intended – the very tip of the blade is chipped; one of the wood handle scales is cracked and one iron handle pin is missing. Still, this rare knife is in very much working order – all parts are original; the springs are intact; lightly etched RBN number is still visible on the blade. Could be a nice restoration project for someone with the right skill set.
This exact type, as well as earlier non-takedown Model 1 types are illustrated on pages 239-242 the excellent French reference book Knives and Daggers-Bayonets Used by the German Army During 1914-1945 by Christian Mary (see the book’s scans attached). These large Fallschirmjäger-Messer knives are pretty hard to find nowadays; see the dedicated German gravity knives page, courtesy of Wikipedia. Developed in 1937, this type was originally issued to the German paratroopers as an emergency-assist knife which could be operated one-handed to cut entangled parachute cords, cut lines, untie paracords with the “marlin spike”, etc. Later in the war this type was issued to all Luftwaffe aircrews (WW2 German Airforce). In 1944 a number of FS knives were also issued to a Skijäger infantry regiment – “ski troops” operating in the northern Ukraine / central Belorussia forests. See a couple of rare WW2 era reference photos of German Skijägers on a winter patrol in the Ukrainian Pripyat region in 1944. One of the Skijägers clearly has a take-down Model 2 FS dangling off his belt (photos are for reference only and will not be included with the knife). A relatively small number of 350,000 Fallschirmjäger-Messer knives were produced in total by six different manufacturers; very few survived the war in decent condition. The knife was large enough, practical and reliable in the field; it was well-received by the airborne troops and it became a subject of envy to all the rest of the men in uniform.
This is a scarce late-war SMF Model 2 specimen with all high-carbon steel (non-stainless) metal parts, blade and shackle including. Early-war Model 1 non-takedown Fallschirmjäger-Messers were made from high-quality stainless steel. But by mid-war stainless steel was becoming scarce in Germany and most of the “non-essential” wartime production had to switch to “regular” high-carbon steel. Still, it wasn’t until late in the war when Paul Weyersberg had finally ran out of various stainless steel parts and had switched to all-carbon steel production. Soon thereafter the Allies had bombed the Solingen factories to smithereens, effectively ending all manufacturing until the war’s end. Late-war “all-carbon steel” production Fallschirmjäger-Messers are hard to find because there weren’t many of them manufactured in the first place. This knife is about 6-1/8″ / 15.5 cm closed; the blade is about 4″ / 10.2 cm long. The bolster cleaned was re-blued; other parts retain original bluing; pitting on the blade release lever and the bolster are noted for accuracy. The blade is very sharp still; the very end of tip is nicked. Late-war carbon steel blade is etched R.B. NR. 0/0561/0020, as intended. The blade comes in and out of the handle well. Heavy-duty marlin spike is about 3-3/4” / 9.5 cm; The base of the spike is sharply stamped with the standard “eagle 5” Luftwaffe proof mark on one side. The knife could be taken apart for maintenance or a blade replacement; the blade lock, the two-part steel bolster, frame interior and the base of the blade are correctly stamped with various late-war production series numbers – see photos. The internal blade spring is nice and tight; the spike holds well – these late-war 2nd model Fallschirmjäger-Messers are scarce in any shape or form nowadays.
Overall, in spite of the advanced age and obvious signs of abuse, this original WW2 era Fallschirmjäger-Messer is in very good shape, considering the age – after 80+ years this original Germany WW2 Paul Weyersberg paratrooper knife is still in good working condition. Today most of the surviving German WW2 era Fallschirmjäger-Messer paratrooper knives are in private collections & rarely come up for sale; don’t miss your chance to add this rare late-war specimen to your collection! Please check out our Collectable Blades and Militaria sections for a variety of custom-made and various WW1 and WW2 combat knives.
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