Norwegian M1957 SLG Garand Bayonet, Modified German M84/98 for the Kar 98k
Single-fullered spear-pointed knife blade measuring 9 7/8 inches (25cm), 15 1/8 inches overall (38.5cm), wood scale grips with cleaning hole, held by two screws. Steel scabbard with webbing hook.
The spine of the blade is stamped ‘37’, indicating that the bayonet was manufactured in 1937. The blade is stamped on one side with ‘S/173’, a manufacturer code which is thought to correspond to Alex Coppel GmbH of Solingen, and on the other side with ‘7599 a’, indicating that it was the 17,598th bayonet made by that manufacturer in that year. 1937 was the last year to see use of the S-codes, which were introduced to maintain secrecy around Germany’s clandestine rearmament program by obscuring the manufacturer of any given bayonet. The scabbard is stamped at the throat with ‘Clemen u. Jung 1940’, indicating that it was manufactured in that year by the firm Clemen & Jung, based in Solingen. The pommel is stamped with three Waffenamt eagle inspection stamps, of the early ‘droop-wing’ design which was also replaced during 1937, with the code ‘WaA253’.
Norway received over 72,000 M1 Garand rifles from the United States between 1950 and 1963 as part of the Mutual Defence Assistance Program – an effort following the Second World War to rearm America’s NATO allies using some of its vast stocks of surplus arms. Norway manufactured around 50,000 direct copies of the US M7 for these rifles beginning in 1953, but these were supplemented by 5,000 modified German M84/98 bayonets which were delivered in 1957, designated the M1957 Selv Lessing Gewaer (Self Loading Rifle). This made sense because Norway inherited a huge stock of Mauser Kar 98k rifles and bayonets in 1945, when almost 400,000 remaining soldiers of the occupation force surrendered.
An extension to the crossguard was brazed in place which would slot into the gas plug, while the scabbard had its frog stud removed and a US webbing hook brazed on instead. More scabbards were converted than bayonets, because some Norwegian units still utilised the Kar 98k, most being rebarreled to accept the US 30.06 cartridge. The Norwegian army still uses the Garand today as a parade rifle.
The metal parts retain almost all of their blueing (which may have been redone when the bayonet was converted) except slight wear on raised edges like the locking button and hilt. Light denting to the wood grips. Blade is unsharpened, the tip is blunted with a slight roll.