Enigma Swiss K Cipher Machine
Enigma Swiss K Cipher Machine Enigma Swiss K Cipher Machine Enigma Swiss K Cipher Machine Enigma Swiss K Cipher Machine Enigma Swiss K Cipher Machine Enigma Swiss K Cipher Machine Enigma Swiss K Cipher Machine
Enigma Swiss K Cipher Machine

Enigma Swiss K Cipher Machine

  • This incredible Enigma is known as the Swiss K
  • This version of the famed cipher machine was made by the Germans for the Swiss Army
  • This historically significant machine is in 100% complete and pristine condition
  • To find an Enigma in such a wonderful preserved state is extraordinary
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Item No. 30-6212
$198,500
description
specifications
description
A significant relic of World War II history, this incredibly rare Enigma 4-rotor cipher machine is in 100% complete and pristine condition. Known as the Swiss K, this particular incarnation of the Enigma was made by the Germans for the Swiss Army and features an additional lamp panel and power supply. Whereas most machines used three rotors, the four rotor machines allowed for much greater security and were much more difficult to decipher. This particular model is distinguished by it's fantastic, original condition, including its set of rotors with matching serial numbers, original Enigma flat "half-opal" bulbs in working condition, power pack with all cables and connectors to feed up to four Enigma, battery and even oak casings. This Swiss K, with the "K" standing for the German word Kommerziell (commercial) was sold to the Swiss beginning in 1939. The case, extra lamp panel, and external power supply were additions made by the Swiss once the Enigma machines were received, and it is known that they also made frequent modifications to the wiring and wheel stepping mechanisms in an attempt to ensure that even the Germans could not decipher their code traffic. 

The Enigma machine was an advanced electro-mechanical cipher machine developed by German engineer Arthur Scherbius after World War I. Approximately 25 variations of the Enigma were created and used by all branches of the German military and the governments of several other countries throughout World War II. In addition to the complexity of the Enigma machine itself, its operating procedures grew increasingly complex over time in order to make Enigma communications harder to code break. It is believed by many that the Allies’ deciphering of the Enigma code shortened the war by at least two years, and to find such a historically important machine incomplete, excellent condition is truly amazing. 

The need to decipher the Enigma would soon become an international affair. In 1929, the Poles intercepted an Enigma machine that was being shipped from Berlin and mistakenly had not been protected as diplomatic baggage. The Poles were able to determine the wiring of the rotors then in use by the German Army and, using them, to decrypt a large portion of German Army traffic for much of the 1930s. The Poles, realizing time was running out before the Germans invaded, decided in mid-1939 to share their work, and passed to the French and the British some of their information. The information was shipped to France in diplomatic baggage; the British share went on to Bletchley Park, where the British secret service had installed its Code and Cipher School for the purpose of breaking the Germans' message traffic. There, British mathematicians and cryptographers, chess players, bridge players, and crossword puzzle fans, among them Alan Turing, managed to conquer the problems presented by the many German Enigma variations and found means of cracking them.

The extra lamp panels are known to be created by the Swiss company Werkstatten H. Bischhausen, while the external power supply was created by H. Stucki Transformatorenbau in Bern and bears the company's plaque in the lid interior. 

This Enigma is marked with serial Number "K 760" while the 4 matching rotors are numbered "K 799".

Circa 1943

Enigma: 15 1/4” wide x 11 3/4” deep x 6” high
specifications
Dimensions: 15 1/4"W x 6"H
Period: 20th Century
Origin: Europe
Type: Americana
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