Swiss M1914 Schmidt-Rubin Sawback Bayonet
Straight spear pointed blade with sawback, swell point and false edge, with single fuller on one side, the other side completely flat. Steel hilt with upper muzzle ring and lower lobe quillon, beaked steel pommel with locking button. Wood slab grips secured by two steel rivets. Steel scabbard with ball finial, frog loop near the throat with attached leather strap. Brown leather frog.
The blade is stamped at the ricasso with the manufacturer ‘Elsener Schwyz’, and on the hilt with the serial number ‘687845’. The lobe quillon is stamped with a Swiss cross. The scabbard throat is stamped with ‘P’ and its finial is stamped with a Swiss cross. The reverse of the frog is stamped with ‘F Christen Sattler Bern’, the leather goods manufacturer (Sattler = Saddler) and ‘43’, probably the manufacture date, as well as an ‘A’ within a cartouche (there should also be a Swiss cross with this, but it was more shallowly stamped and has rubbed away) and the scratched initials ‘R D’, probably a soldier’s name.
Offically called the Sägebajonett Mod. 1914 (Sawing Bayonet Model of 1914), the M1914 bayonet for the Schmidt-Rubin rifle was based upon the earlier M1878 and M1881 bayonets for the Vetterli rifle, with a similar sawback blade combined with the hilt design from the M1889 Schmidt-Rubin bayonet. The blade is unusual in that it is flat on one side and with a ground edge on the other. It has a ‘sawback’, saw teeth cut into the spine of the blade intended to make it useful for field work like cutting brush.
The M1914 was only issued to certain troops such as transport NCOs, artillery drivers and engineers, while most troops carried a shorter knife blade without the sawback. It was used with the M1911 carbine and M1931 (K31) short rifle. The all-steel scabbard seen with this example was introduced in 1938 for new production, and the previous leather scabbards replaced as they wore out.
The blade is bright and clean overall, with only the expected rubbing marks from sheathing and drawing on the flat side. The saw has seen light use: three saw teeth have broken points and a few show burrs or light chipping. The wood grips are in good condition with a couple of light dents. The steel scabbard is free of dents and retains almost all of its original blued finish, with some rubbing to the finial and edges exposing bright steel. The leather frog is flexible with all its stitching intact and only light rubbing to the surface – its steel rivets and buckle are bright.