Here is something I learned while doing some research on a German camera flash known as the Kobold Flash. While looking at the markings it had “Made In West Germany”. I wondered if this would give me an estimation of when it was made. Well as it turns out, Made In West Germany does give you a clue as to when the product could have been made. As it turns out there were other clues, like and old Every Ready 22.5v B122 battery (said “Made in Britain”) that would give me a good estimation as to when it was made.
Before WWII (1945) it was always “Made in Germany” or simply “Germany”.
From 1945 to 1949, before the “Federal Republic of Germany” was established, mostly no identification was used, but occasionally, merely depending on the availability of components, also “Made in Germany” is found.
Identifications such as “Made in Germany – US-Zone” were normally confined to high technical products, e.g. quality-lenses also for military uses, on which sales or export restrictions were applied.
From 1949 (until today) “Made in Germay” was used again, but from ca. 1952/55 “Made in Western-Germany” or “Made in West-Germany” was preferred to distinguish from GDR (East-Germany). But this was not compulsory and rather used at whim.
“West-Germany” became obsolete in 1990. But these days “Made in Germany” is commonly replaced by “Made in EU”
Base on the above information I estimated the Kobold Flash to be made sometime in the 1950’s or 1960’s.
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