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When I was starting out, I picked up a couple of books (Janzen's and Carter's last price guide). I spent a lot of time studying the books, looking on eBay, and going to shows and antique malls, just to practice identification. Of course, I bought a few things along the way, however, I did waaaay more looking than buying. I participated in the old rec.guns newsgroup (there was no gunboards, surplusrifle, etc. back then). I continued adding a book for every 3 or so bayonets (have about 90 bayonet books today). I kept a database, so I never lost track of information about the bayonets in my collection. The database eventually became the seed from which the worldbayonets.com site grew.
 
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