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Australian made Sub Badge-original?
Old 12-22-2019, 01:53 PM   #1
fredswiss
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Default Australian made Sub Badge-original?

Any opinions on the originality of this officer’s sub badge would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance for your feedback. These are the only photos I’ve received from the seller.
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Old 12-22-2019, 02:51 PM   #2
Ron P
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Hi. It looks very close to one pictured in the reference book "US Silent Service" by David A. Jones on page 79. The waves are stylized differently. Regards, Ron.
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Old 12-22-2019, 03:54 PM   #3
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Thanks Ron. I have the book. The one shown in it is sterling marked whereas this one is marked “bronze”.
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Old 12-22-2019, 04:24 PM   #4
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Wish you could get closeups. I personally like variation in style of the wake.
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Old 12-23-2019, 12:15 PM   #5
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Any other thoughts please...
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Old 12-23-2019, 06:39 PM   #6
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I would love to learn of one of this type of sub badge with rock-solid provenance.

Genuine Wallace and Bishop WW2 vintage AAF wings are complicated multi-pieces items. The company name is raised and the folded sheet metal hinges and catches are both wide and flat.

I've just never been comfortable with the Wallace and Bishop Sub badge portrayed in the Jones book. These Sub badges are very "slick" with stamped markings and roundwire "C" catches. They also never look like they've been worn (dead straight pins).

Maybe they are genuine but they are not for me because they do not "feel" right.

Regards
Mike
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Old 12-27-2019, 08:57 PM   #7
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I own several pieces of genuine Wallace Bishop insignia. Most with provenance.
These are not something I would want in my collection.
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Old 12-28-2019, 12:46 PM   #8
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I greatly resspect both Mike and Gary’s knowledge and opinions and did not purchase the badge. However, I also sent photos to a highly knowledgeable collector/dealer located in the Midwest who stated that it was original. The controversy continues.
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Old 12-29-2019, 03:54 PM   #9
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Are they stamped or cast?
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Old 12-29-2019, 07:55 PM   #10
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Hi Fred,

I am the first to admit I do not know the answer as to whether the badge you posted is genuine or fake. For the record, I have not handled one of these because of my reasoning above - I have never see one locally (Sheridan's are "local" where I am!) so for me the potential to be stuck with a very expensive mistake is just too great.

The fact there are 2 distinctly different versions of Wallace & Bishop badges (the one in the Jones book and the one at the top of the thread) further muddies the water. The easiest distinguishing obverse feature is the bow wave design (as mentioned above) but there are many other subtle differences with waves, dolphins and sub. So W&B, any of who's WW2 vintage US metal insignia are rare as hen's teeth these days, had TWO dies for the Officer's Sub badge?

Further, the smaller size depicted on P98 in the Jones book looks like classic Wallace & Bishop to me, despite what appears to be a "C" catch! If W&B made up a die with their typical maker mark for a small badge, why would they not do the same for their larger badge?

Just too many questions for me regarding this particular badge and in the absence of a badge with rock solid provenance to establish what the genuine type (if they were produced at all) looks like I have stayed away from them.

Regards
Mike

PS: If I was forced to choose between the Jones example and the one at the top of the thread I'd take the Jones example because at least the obverse looks like it may have some wear!

PPS: re markings, W&B used the word "SILVER", not "STERLING" on their WW2 vintage US flight wings (raised as part of the die on Pilot's Badges, stamped for Air Crew Badges).
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Old 12-29-2019, 08:45 PM   #11
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101combatvet, they are diestruct.
Mike, thanks for the additional feedback. It is appreciated. I did take a couple of additional photos when I had it in hand. It is clearly marked “BROnzee”. Do you think it’s possible they used a differnt die for sticking bronze examples?
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Old 12-29-2019, 08:45 PM   #12
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Sorry for the typos....
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Old 12-29-2019, 10:27 PM   #13
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Hi Fred,

I'd have thought any steel die would handle any softer material like Silver or Bronze, so I can not personally see any justification for different dies for different materials.

Due to the number of differences observed between the two types I would not be thinking die reworking either.

A second die due to the first being damaged/broken? Maybe, but given that production numbers would have been low (limited die use) I think that would be stretching it.

One further observation from the last reverse pic: it appears clear to me that the catch was in place prior to the gold finish being applied (the solder is hidden by the finish). It's hard to tell on the Jones full size badge, but I think that catch was applied after the finish (I don't like the scortch mark appearance though). On the Jones P98 mini it appears the catch was clearly applied after the finish. On W&B AAF wings, it also appears the catch was applied after the silver finish but I don't have a huge database of pics and only a couple of those wings in my collection at the moment. Food for thought?

Regards
Mike
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Old 12-30-2019, 08:38 AM   #14
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Hi Mike,
Thanks again for the additional thoughts. Your knowledge and willingness to share it is greatly appreciated.
If I get the opportunity to have another look at the badge I will attempt to carefully see if the finish was applied after the hinge and catch were attached as you suspect.
I am surprised that so few of these have surfaced. Prior to this example, I never even heard of, much less seen, a bronze sub badges by Wallace Bishop in the 43 years that I’ve collecting U.S. insignia.
Have a wonderful new year
Regards,
Fred
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