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PAL RH-36 polished and blackened

Started by Gregory , Feb 26 2008 10:13 AM

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#1 Gregory

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Posted 26 February 2008 - 10:13 AM

Hello,

As in the title. Simple question for edged fans - which variation of PAL RH-36 was more popular during WWII in the US armed forces - polished or blackened one?

Thanks in advance for possible replies.

Best regards

Greg

#2 Gliderinf

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Posted 26 February 2008 - 01:19 PM

I didn't know they came in black - all that Ive seen are shiney :unsure:

#3 Gregory

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Posted 26 February 2008 - 02:59 PM

It seems to me that majority of those knives were polished but they were also blackened -- both blued and parkerized if I see correctly at the pictures.

#4 bayonetman

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Posted 26 February 2008 - 03:07 PM

I didn't know they came in black - all that Ive seen are shiney :unsure:


Most PAL RH-36 knives procured by the US military during WW2 were finished commercial - that it, the blades were polished bright. Later in the war, PAL began delivery of the RH-36 in a Parkerized finish. In my experience, the polished blade is far more common and seems to have been used more during the war. I don't think this was a choice of the user, just that the Parkerized version did not come out until so late that it did not see as much service.

In the photo, the top knife was carried by a PT boat mechanic who listed all of the places he had been on the sheath and apparently the numbers of the PT boats in his squadron. Both the knife and sheath show signs of heavy use and wear.

The one below is a Parkerized version that shows little or no use. It also came from a vet, but was apparently stowed away and not used much if at all.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v97/bayonetman/Knives/PALRH36.jpg

#5 Gregory

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 12:40 AM

Gary,

Thank you very much. That is this info I looked for.

Regards

Greg

#6 Bart P

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 11:26 AM

Hi Bayonetman,
Thanks for the info!

I have recently acquired a polished Pal rh 36... I'll upload the pics as soon as I get it!

This was one of the more common fighting knives in the ETO, besides the M3 obviously, no?

grts
Bart

#7 Gregory

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 11:48 AM

Hi Bayonetman,
Thanks for the info!

I have recently acquired a polished Pal rh 36... I'll upload the pics as soon as I get it!

This was one of the more common fighting knives in the ETO, besides the M3 obviously, no?

grts
Bart

Hello Bart,

Post promised pics also for me, I am interested too, I like very much those six inchers permanently underestimated by the reenactors for instance.

Best regards

Greg

#8 Bart P

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 11:52 AM

Hello Greg,

No probs! I'll post them pics right here!

I'll don't have a decent sheat at the moment... The one that goes with the knife has been "customized"... Pieces of leather cut out, ... http://www.usmilitar...tyle_emoticons/default/thumbdown.gif Could be done during the war.. but I doubt that...

rgds
Bart

#9 Jeeper704

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 12:20 PM

Here is mine, received it today.
No sheath but I plan to put it behind a holster (or go look for a sheath).

http://i160.photobucket.com/albums/t188/TD-soldier/PALRH36fightingknife.jpg

It's in a used but nice condition.

Erwin

#10 Bart P

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 01:22 PM

A good, but used condition, as you told!

Nice. Putting it behind a holster would be a good idea, Erwin! http://www.usmilitar...tyle_emoticons/default/thumbsup.gif

grts
Bart

#11 cherokee tj

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 01:38 PM

Here's a photo of one I have. http://i6.photobucket.com/albums/y224/cherokketj/pal002.jpg

#12 Gregory

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 06:17 PM

Thank you very much for all posts. I invite to post all your RH-36s and we will see different variations of those knives.


In the meantime one more question to edged gurus -- does anybody know if RH-36s were manufactured also after WWII? If so, did they look a little other or not (new spacers, new materials, pommel etc.)?

#13 bayonetman

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Posted 27 February 2008 - 07:19 PM

Thank you very much for all posts. I invite to post all your RH-36s and we will see different variations of those knives.
In the meantime one more question to edged gurus -- does anybody know if RH-36s were manufactured also after WWII? If so, did they look a little other or not (new spacers, new materials, pommel etc.)?


Greg, Pal did continue to manufacture the RH-36 after WW2 until about 1952 when they closed the knife factory, and those sold just after the war were identical except for the use of the bright blade only. It is really impossible to tell wartime from those made and sold just after the war as they were using up parts on hand. Pre war (and very early wartime deliveries) and later post war used a bright polished or plated pommel, while most wartime used a dull metal, probably an alloy used to save steel. Look at the pommel in the photos and you can see it is dull gray. The photo you show at the end of the thread on the sheathes has the bright "commercial" pommel. That and the early style sheath probably makes it a pre war or very early war specimen before they changed to the looped sheath and dull pommel.

#14 Gregory

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Posted 28 February 2008 - 02:23 AM

Gary,

Thank you very much.

One more question if it is true or not. I found somewhere an information that there were also RH-36s with steel pommels. Is it true? Maybe some people can't distinguish polished duraluminum from steel?

Regards

Greg

#15 Akubra

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Posted 02 March 2008 - 02:32 AM

This is a photo of the PAL RH 36 in my collection. I think it had a blackened finish, but most of it is gone.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v679/pzgren/Privatsammlung/IMG_2859.jpg

#16 Gregory

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Posted 02 March 2008 - 03:06 AM

Thank you very much. I invite the others as well to post their RH-36s. They had big number of the spacers combinations and we could look at them and compare.

I invite also to post period pics of those knives. At the gunboards.com there was an interesting topic dedicated to PAL RH-36 and several persons posted their historic pics with the soldiers and their RH-36s.

I am posting MTO-based 15th AF fighter pilots. One of them has two knives. What he holds in his hand looks rather like 8 incher, not RH-36. But what he has attached to the belt seems to be PAL RH-36.

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#17 Gregory

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Posted 04 March 2008 - 04:53 PM

Hello -- nobody has period pics of the RH-36s? I do not believe. ;)

In the meantime look please at this para. What he has at his leg seems to be PAL RH-36. Do you agree?

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#18 Gregory

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Posted 04 March 2008 - 04:54 PM

Close-up of the para's knife.

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#19 Charlie Flick

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Posted 04 March 2008 - 06:41 PM

Hello Greg:

The nice photo of the MTO pilot is very interesting. He is holding what appears to me to be a 7" Case double edged Stiletto with the bakelite pommel. That may be an RH-36 on his hip but the photo is not sharp enough to establish that to a certainty.

The photo of the paratrooper does not show an RH-36, in my opinion. The shape of the pommel is wrong. Keep in mind that there were many very similar patterns of hunting knives, both civilian and military, that bear a strong resemblance to a sheathed RH-36. These could include the 6" Cases, the Robeson No. 21s., many Kabar/Union Cutlery blades, and the Marbles Ideal pattern. They can be tough to distinguish in a fuzzy photo where the blade is found in the sheath.

You asked for a period pic of an RH-36. Here is one from my photo archives that I am reasonably confident shows an RH-36, but I can not be positive. The flier is a Marine Corps aviator at Okinawa in 1945 preparing to climb aboard his Corsair. Hope that helps you.

Regards,
Charlie Flick

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v146/Ordnanceguy/US%20Knives/CaptFloydKirkpatrickUSMCVMF-441Okin.jpg

#20 Charlie Flick

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Posted 04 March 2008 - 06:53 PM

At the gunboards.com there was an interesting topic dedicated to PAL RH-36 and several persons posted their historic pics with the soldiers and their RH-36s.


Gregory:

Where on the Gunboards site was the RH-36 thread? I looked at the "Militaria-Swords-Bayonets- Edged Weapons Forum" but found nothing on the PALs.

Regards,
Charlie


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