Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Polish AK bayonets
Post Reply
User avatar
Mr. B.
Posts: 759
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 10:42 pm
Location: Iowa City, Iowa, USA

Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by Mr. B. » Mon Mar 07, 2016 8:41 pm

Polish AK47 bayonets and scabbards are some of the easiest to identify. The Polish manufactured bayonets are arsenal and series marked on the cross guard and serial numbered on the bottom of the hilt. The scabbards are unmarked, but unique in style and manufacture. They are one smooth piece extrusion formed on a mandrel and have no seams, flanges, welds or drain holes. The have a small verticle bar with two small rings spot welded on the back to attach the leather hanger. I will picture the scabbards first as the are unchanged from the first to the last production. They vary only in finish, blued, phosphate, or painted. I also have a blued one that has wire brushed or rough sanded before bluing or re-bluing to give a non reflective surface. The tension spring is also of different design from other countries. Mike
IMG_0058.JPG
IMG_0059.JPG
IMG_0061.JPG

User avatar
Mr. B.
Posts: 759
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 10:42 pm
Location: Iowa City, Iowa, USA

Re: Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by Mr. B. » Tue Mar 08, 2016 12:26 am

Poland began production of the AK47 bayonet and scabbard in 1956. These first bayonets were a typical pattern. They had stamped markings on the left side of the cross guard including an oval containing an "11", (Radom Arsenal), over "1957". They also had serial numbers on the bottom of hilt similar to the later production. I don't have one of these, so no picture. Mike

User avatar
Mr. B.
Posts: 759
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 10:42 pm
Location: Iowa City, Iowa, USA

Re: Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by Mr. B. » Tue Mar 08, 2016 12:45 am

The next production series of the Polish AK47 bayonet is the same basic pattern as the 1957. The left side of the cross guard still has the "oval 11" arsenal mark, but the year "1958" has been moved to the right side of the pommel. There are two different series of the 1958 bayonet. One has an "A" prefix serial number on the bottom of the hilt the other has a "Z" prefix. These 1958 pattern bayonets and scabbards come in a variety of finishes including smooth blued, scratched blue (non-reflective), painted and phosphate. Also note the different hangers, sewn vs riveted, different embossing and colors. I don't know what if anything the differences mean and just try display a variety of them. Mike
IMG_0062.JPG
IMG_0063.JPG
IMG_0064.JPG

User avatar
Mr. B.
Posts: 759
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 10:42 pm
Location: Iowa City, Iowa, USA

Re: Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by Mr. B. » Tue Mar 08, 2016 12:57 am

The final pattern of the Polish AK47 bayonet and scabbard is the 1970 pattern. these are basically the same as the previous ones. This time the "oval 11" has been moved to the right side of the cross guard and the "1970" is on the left. The serial numbers on the bottom of the hilt have 4-5 numbers and no letters. Again a variety of finishes including, blued, painted and phosphate. Shown below are a phosphate and a non reflective black painted one. Mike
IMG_0065.JPG
IMG_0067.JPG
IMG_0068.JPG
IMG_0069.JPG

User avatar
Mr. B.
Posts: 759
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 10:42 pm
Location: Iowa City, Iowa, USA

Re: Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by Mr. B. » Tue Mar 08, 2016 1:15 am

This is an unusual bayonet that I believe to be Polish issued but may not be Polish made. It came with a standard Polish scabbard and hanger and was with a lot of other Polish bayonets. It has no markings other than a serial number, "K" and 5 numbers, in the Polish position on the bottom of the hilt. Note that the dies used to stamp the numbers were too large and caused small chips in the grips. The grip panels themselves appear to be similar to the Polish ones. The final exterior machining on the cross guard and pommel is rougher than the normal smooth Polish ones. Whether this bayonet was supplied by another country, (i.e. Bulgaria?), as a completed item or parts is unknown. Also unknown is if it was pre-Polish production or to supplement Polish production. I have seen pictures of a similar bayonet with the Russian Izhevsk mark on the cross guard of a Polish bayonet as well. Mike
IMG_0070.JPG
IMG_0071.JPG
IMG_0073.JPG
IMG_0074.JPG

Trombi
Posts: 25
Joined: Fri Dec 25, 2015 5:08 pm
Location: Sheffield

Re: Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by Trombi » Tue Mar 08, 2016 1:47 am

Mike I think You have polish bayonet from Bulgaria. Here are pictures of serial numbers from polish bayonets came from Bulgaria. Pictures do not belong to me.
3.JPG
3a.JPG
3b.JPG

User avatar
Mr. B.
Posts: 759
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 10:42 pm
Location: Iowa City, Iowa, USA

Re: Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by Mr. B. » Tue Mar 08, 2016 2:41 am

I agree! That is what I was thinking when I examined it. Thanks for helping confirm it. Mike

modellkm87
Posts: 9
Joined: Mon Apr 04, 2016 3:35 am
Location: Ohio, USA

Re: Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by modellkm87 » Thu Apr 07, 2016 4:56 am

ImageImageImage

Here are two 1957's that I have. I had several of each of these, but I think some folks on this forum ended up with my extras.

User avatar
Brian
Site Admin
Posts: 292
Joined: Fri Nov 27, 2015 6:37 pm
Location: South Africa
Contact:

Re: Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by Brian » Fri Apr 08, 2016 12:54 pm

Damn Roger, there you go making us jealous. Still need a 1957.
Is that P089? Odd number
Brian
- Admin -

User avatar
Mr. B.
Posts: 759
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 10:42 pm
Location: Iowa City, Iowa, USA

Re: Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by Mr. B. » Fri Apr 08, 2016 3:50 pm

I would also like to have a 1957, have been trying to find one for years. I passed on one about 15-20 years ago when there were a lot of Polish AK47 bayonets on the market. Gun show dealer had a mixed box, wanted $50.. I didn't realize the '57s were that rare, was more interested in an original hanger which was rare at the time.

Mike

User avatar
MDIvie
Posts: 179
Joined: Mon Nov 30, 2015 4:48 am
Location: Allen, TX, USA

Re: Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by MDIvie » Sat Apr 09, 2016 6:32 am

Guys, I need to look at my Polish AK Bayonet books (or one of you can do it) to confirm, but I believe the P serial number is from a prototype batch and the A serial number is for a full issue piece. My 1957 is an A serial number - A 00025 and came in a scabbard with a dark brown hanger.

User avatar
Mr. B.
Posts: 759
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 10:42 pm
Location: Iowa City, Iowa, USA

Re: Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by Mr. B. » Sun Aug 19, 2018 7:44 pm

Here are some better pictures of the three finishes found on the 1970 version of the Polish AK47 bayonets and scabbards. They are from top to bottom and left to right: Blued - Phosphate - Painted Black. These same finishes are found on the 1958 series bayonets as well. Mike
IMG_0134.JPG
IMG_0130.JPG
IMG_0133.JPG

User avatar
Dragur2791
Posts: 58
Joined: Thu May 31, 2018 9:06 pm
Location: Denmark

Re: Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by Dragur2791 » Sun Aug 19, 2018 9:03 pm

Beautiful examples!!

Which of the Polish ak47 bayonets are said to be the most rare?

Here is the one i got in my collection. A 1970 example.
Attachments
7645F77E-FADB-45A2-ABE9-C78C607B2D8C.jpeg
4BBAC4BE-B80F-4AC5-AE59-DE2E813FF202.jpeg
E648990F-0958-49EC-8BD3-B7A9C64991D4.jpeg
DCFA2E50-E540-4AB1-9C5F-12049439D05A.jpeg

User avatar
MDIvie
Posts: 179
Joined: Mon Nov 30, 2015 4:48 am
Location: Allen, TX, USA

Re: Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by MDIvie » Sun Aug 19, 2018 10:38 pm

My take on rarity is as follows:

P prefix 1957 rarest
A prefix 1957 rare
A prefix 1970 scarce
A prefix 1958 common

As to where non-Polish produced bayonets issued in Polish scabbards come in I would say maybe between the two 1957 variations or between the A prefix 1957 and the A prefix 1970. Russian marked maybe a little more rare than ones that were made in Bulgaria.
I am open for debate on these assessments.

MDI

User avatar
Mr. B.
Posts: 759
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 10:42 pm
Location: Iowa City, Iowa, USA

Re: Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by Mr. B. » Mon Aug 20, 2018 12:51 am

I agree as far as the list goes. What about the Z prefix 1958? I have never seen a letter code 1970. My phosphate one has what appears to 4 numbers, the painted one 5 numbers and blued one has no serial numbers. The 1970 numbers are in a different location than the 1958 ones. See the pictures of my 1970s and 1958 Z in the thread above. Mike

User avatar
MDIvie
Posts: 179
Joined: Mon Nov 30, 2015 4:48 am
Location: Allen, TX, USA

Re: Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by MDIvie » Mon Aug 20, 2018 1:39 am

You are right Mike. 1970's do not have the A prefix.

My adjusted take on rarity is as follows:

P prefix 1957 rarest
A prefix 1957 rare
Z Prefix 1958 rare
1970 scarce
A prefix 1958 common

s to where non-Polish produced bayonets issued in Polish scabbards come in I would say maybe between the two 1957 variations or between the A prefix 1957 and the A prefix 1970. Russian marked maybe a little more rare than ones that were made in Bulgaria.
I am open for debate on these assessments.

User avatar
Mr. B.
Posts: 759
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 10:42 pm
Location: Iowa City, Iowa, USA

Re: Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by Mr. B. » Mon Aug 20, 2018 5:06 am

I wouldn't even want to guess which finish, (Bluing, Phosphate, or Paint), is rarest on any of the 1958s or 1970s. I would guess the one(s) that a collector doesn't have would be the rarest one(s). I do not have a 1957. They appear to be blued in pictures, is this correct and the only finish found? The finishes seem to be random on the 1958s. On the 1970s, the earliest ones seem to be blued, (old style sewn hanger) the phosphate came next, (low 4 digit number and later style riveted hanger. The black painted one was last produced, (5 digit number and riveted hanger). I have found references that document that the old style sewn hangers were used when production was resumed with the 1970 version. When existing supplies of the sewn ones were exhausted the newly designed and approve ones with rivets were used. Therefor it is correct for a sewn hanger to be on a 1970, but the riveted ones should only be considered original on a 1970. Riveted one on a 1957 or 1958 would be as a replacement. Just had a thought, is it possible that the different finishes on the bayonets could be from rework/refinishing? Hard to explain as my 1970s are in like New condition. Mike

User avatar
Mr. B.
Posts: 759
Joined: Wed Dec 16, 2015 10:42 pm
Location: Iowa City, Iowa, USA

Re: Polish AK47 Bayonet & Scabbard Variations

Post by Mr. B. » Fri Aug 24, 2018 12:01 am

Here is a different "finish" on one of my Polish AK47s. I am not sure if this is an official or field application. The entire exposed metal on the bayonet hilt and scabbard appear to have been rough sanded or wire brushed before being reblued. This leaves a rough non-relective textured appearance which reduces glare. I have seen this finish on several others so it does not seem to be a one off type of thing. Does anyone have any information about this type of finish? Mike
IMG_0160.JPG
IMG_0165.JPG
IMG_0164.JPG

Post Reply