Antique Henckels and RH Forschner

Kitchen Knife Forums

Help Support Kitchen Knife Forums:

Bagotnj

Member
Joined
Dec 22, 2022
Messages
7
Reaction score
12
Location
Charlotte NC
Hi I recently bought two antique knives (on the left). The first one is a JA Henckels Zwillingwerk 14 inch blade with birdseye rivets. Fantastic condition. So shiny I had to cut onions to make sure it wasn’t stainless steel. The next one is a RH Forschner XXX Damascus 14 inch blade. Both are carbon steel. I’ve been trying to date both. Seems like they’re 1920s-1930s but I haven’t found any specific magazine articles to date them. The Henckels similar to this one are usually marked “108-14” or “twinworks” but this Henckel has neither marking. I’ve seen a couple RH Forschner knives that are marked xxx Damascus which is supposed to mean triple heat treated but they’re mostly butcher knives and I haven’t found any information to date that manufacturers mark. Any info would help. Thanks
 

Attachments

  • C36E8BDC-3061-473D-BC4F-5C9034FFF22E.jpeg
    C36E8BDC-3061-473D-BC4F-5C9034FFF22E.jpeg
    1.5 MB · Views: 2
  • 77C217AF-E637-40E7-90ED-69ED142622A9.jpeg
    77C217AF-E637-40E7-90ED-69ED142622A9.jpeg
    1.5 MB · Views: 0
  • 8FF5B3E7-631F-4FA1-84CE-2A7052C7B5BB.jpeg
    8FF5B3E7-631F-4FA1-84CE-2A7052C7B5BB.jpeg
    999.4 KB · Views: 0
  • 37835466-618E-465A-9DA3-83DA9E2DA87A.jpeg
    37835466-618E-465A-9DA3-83DA9E2DA87A.jpeg
    1,004.8 KB · Views: 0
  • 413B14FF-49A1-4B87-B7D5-CA32B18014F7.jpeg
    413B14FF-49A1-4B87-B7D5-CA32B18014F7.jpeg
    1.4 MB · Views: 0
  • 4CC26769-403C-41B1-9FD9-1DCC456BF466.jpeg
    4CC26769-403C-41B1-9FD9-1DCC456BF466.jpeg
    1.2 MB · Views: 0
  • 3537034D-A878-4CC5-BA09-BBAABABC86FF.jpeg
    3537034D-A878-4CC5-BA09-BBAABABC86FF.jpeg
    992.8 KB · Views: 0
  • 8BCEE4DA-0037-4860-9295-8F58868A8A88.jpeg
    8BCEE4DA-0037-4860-9295-8F58868A8A88.jpeg
    974.2 KB · Views: 0
  • F295C650-5CF2-4101-8049-77B351A6BAE5.jpeg
    F295C650-5CF2-4101-8049-77B351A6BAE5.jpeg
    900.1 KB · Views: 0
Joined
Jul 22, 2017
Messages
515
Reaction score
663
Location
SW Floriduh
"Hi I recently bought two antique knives (on the left). The first one is a JA Henckels Zwillingwerk 14 inch blade with birdseye rivets. Fantastic condition. So shiny I had to cut onions to make sure it wasn’t stainless steel."
Yes, aMAZing condition. That's a total keeper (or worth a hefty chunck o' change to the right collector if you want to move it on.) And as you know it's not stainless no matter what reddit says.

"The next one is a RH Forschner XXX Damascus 14 inch blade. I’ve been trying to date both. Seems like they’re 1920s-1930s but I haven’t found any specific magazine articles to date them."
That's a reasonable date. But I know of Henckels carbon knives made into the mid-1950s, and I still have issues dating some of them. I do have contact with an archivist at J.A.Henckels in Solingen with whom I discuss items in my collection that I have issues with. I can get you in touch with him if you so desire.
The Forschner is difficult for me to help with. I've always thought of them as a distributor for Victorinox knives (and indeed Wikipedia says so.) But this knife, with it's Forschner stamping, looks like it was made by them. I'd take a wild guess and say Forschner contracted with a knife manufacturer to make this knife solely with the Forschner brand. I've no data to prove or disprove that but that's my guess.


The Henckels similar to this one are usually marked “108-14” or “twinworks” but this Henckels has neither marking.
Not to be pedantic but it does. "Zwillingswerk" is the German word for twinswork ("zwilling" means "twin" in German.) The fact that it's stamped all in German means, to me, that it was made for the German market and imported at some point, most likely after the initial sale, to the US (assuming you found this knife in the US.) Also, see my post about my giant Henckles knife: [Vintage chef's knife] Holy Toledo boys! for an example without a model number.

I’ve seen a couple RH Forschner knives that are marked xxx Damascus which is supposed to mean triple heat treated but they’re mostly butcher knives and I haven’t found any information to date that manufacturers mark. Any info would help. Thanks
I can't help much more with the Forschner knife. Hopefully someone else can.
Those 'BonGourmet' Sabs should should also get some attention here.
Thanks for posting these! I love old, Western knives.
 
Top