during this cold and dark winter I have more time for checking the net for interesting badges. A few days ago I stumbled over a General Assault Badge with a screw back. Not a normal screw back as most of you know from Iron Crosses first class. I talk about the seashell screw back version. In Germany we use the term “Sternenschraubscheibe” which means star screw back.
My collector friend Gabin Bruneau from France is the proud owner of that nice GAB. I asked for some pictures and more details about the badge and here we go.
The weight of the screw back: 5.85g
The weight of the badge: 27.75g
Both together: 33.60g
The measurements of the badeg are: 540 mm high and 445 mm wide. The screwback itself has 410 mm.
So in this case we have a General Assault Badge made by the company Alois Rettenmaier. If you look for this company you will see they are still in service and located in Germany, Schwäbisch Gmünd
Well, Alois Rettenmaier and seashell……maybe you remember seeing Infantry Assault Badges made by Rettenmaier before with this sort of backside. I started to search the net for more badges with clamshell screw backs and found some.
In the Luftwaffen Badge area I found some pilot badges, sadly just with normal screw backs, Kriegsmarine was the same, no luck there. Only one Uboat Badge but I think that was not a good one with the screw back…..
So I went on and found wounded badges from World War I with clamshells, Iron Crosses 1st class 1914 and Iron Crosses 1st class 1939 with that clamshell. Even on the clasp for the iron cross 1939 1st class we found them…..So they are out there but you have to be careful: Bad guys already know that the price goes up if there is a screw back instead of a pin….even better a seashell……watch out and get good information before you buy.
Let`s go back to the General Assault Badge. Searching for more information another collector friend provided me with pictures from his collection. There are 3 known makers which made clamshell screw backs General Assault Badges:
1.Schauerte & Höhfeld
And here are the pictures to the different GAB makers.
As always we need some historical facts to the General Assault Badge:
The General Assault badge was introduced on June 1st, 1940 by Generaloberst Walther von Brauchitsch, for award to support personnel who were ineligible for the Infantry or Panzer Assault badges. Criteria for award of the badge was basically the same as the criteria for award of the Infantry and Panzer Assault badges with the main qualification being participation in three separate assaults in a supporting role. On its introduction the badge was only intended for award to combat engineers and was designated, Pionier-Sturmabzeichen, (Engineer’s Assault Badge). Shortly afterwards award of the badge was extended to other support personnel including artillery and assault gun personnel, anti-tank and anti-aircraft personnel and medical personnel. Of Note: Before the introduction of the Tank Destruction Strip in March 1942, personnel who had single handedly destroyed an enemy tank with Infantry weapons were awarded the General Assault Badge.
Finally for the collectors of GAB`s or IAB`s who wants all varieties for their collection, it will be a hard way to get them all. I think they pop up here and there but because of the rarity they are already sold when you try to get them
Thanks again to all collectors who provided me with picture material. Some pictures are without any source, so if that is from your collection let me know. So I can credit it to your name.
Hope that the clam shell information was good for your hobby!
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Copyright 2018 : Alle Rechte bei dem Verfasser Sascha Ulderup / All rights with the author Sascha Ulderup