I was prowling eBay the other day and ran across a lone leather shovel cover for my the Swiss Entrenching Shovel-Spade. I have been looking for one of these ever since I picked up my shovel that was missing the cover. This is the first leather cover that I have ever run across that was available without a shovel. I picked up this one for a fair price and it arrived today.
The leather was a bit stiff from age, so I gave it a good coat of oil and let it soak in. Now it's good-to-go and a great addition to what has become a Swiss Shovel Set! I have the shovel and BOTH of the covers!
This leather cover is dated 1941 and has crisp and clear leather stampings indicating the manufacturer as well as the Swiss Military acceptance stamp (cross).
The straps are riveted with copper rivets with aluminum washers and together, they make a beautiful combination. The smaller, edge reinforcing rivets are all aluminum. There is still a bit of "green corrosion" on a few of the copper rivet heads that will need to be buffed off. All in all, this is a beautiful leather cover with no real flaws. It is definitely built to last, using old-world craftsmanship and materials. That is why I love these old Swiss surplus pieces.
As a comparison, I pulled out the rare metal cover so I could get a few side-by-side shots. It is interesting to note that the metal covers are slightly smaller overall, and actually weigh less than the leather.
An now to finish things up, here is the traditional photo album: