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CASE V42 Stiletto


Greg Robinson
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Raventree

I'm brand new here, trying to find info on an inherited Case V-42. My sister inherited part of an estate of a dear friend who had several different collections, one of which was knives. She said his father & uncle both served in WWII but has no details. She sent the knife to me to research after seeing similar ones on ebay in the $6000+ range. I'm trying to find out if this is an original or reproduction. My concerns are that Wikipedia stated that they weight 7 ounces, and another site mentioned the pin indication dot. This knife weighs about 6.2 ounces and I don't see the pin dot. Thank you any and all advice & information. 

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EmperorWangDong
4 hours ago, Raventree said:

I'm brand new here, trying to find info on an inherited Case V-42. My sister inherited part of an estate of a dear friend who had several different collections, one of which was knives. She said his father & uncle both served in WWII but has no details. She sent the knife to me to research after seeing similar ones on ebay in the $6000+ range. I'm trying to find out if this is an original or reproduction. My concerns are that Wikipedia stated that they weight 7 ounces, and another site mentioned the pin indication dot. This knife weighs about 6.2 ounces and I don't see the pin dot. Thank you any and all advice & information. 

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Looks legit, although it has been re-handled which hurts the value quite a bit. Still worth a decent chunk of change though, did a sheath come with it?

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Looks original to me. Seems to be well buvved on the metal pommel so the pin may be smoothed over. I don't think its been regripped as the leather on the cross guard is still there. Ones I have seen altered don't replace the cushion on the guard.

 

There are published examples of early V42s with smooth grips from the factory. Also with plated skull crushers. Early production or Photos are in the Allied Fighting knife book. My first V42 I owned several years ago also had a smooth grip and original long scabbard. The grip was perfectly symmetrical and hadnt been smoothed off by a previous owner or replaced. I recall mine had a bit of plating left the skull crusher but was very well worn. The grip cushion was not present and don't look like it had been cut off. Typically the grip had ridges on it from a machine that grooved them and was said to also groove the thumb prints. Its my opinion some of the early production knives were smooth or just missed the process of the grooved grip. I have read and seen discussions on the V42 seeing reissue to Ranger and early SF units in the Korea era and late 50s. Could they have ben re gripped if needed..sure but hard to say.

 

As for the weight each knife was hand ground so that could account for a weight variation. I would measure the blade as often the tips were broken or intentionally blunted / shortened as they were needle point sharp. Allied Fighting knife book lists the production knife blade being shorter at 7 1/16 but show two f the factory protos' sample knives with some variation in blade length and width.

One is listed as  7 1/2 inches long (prototype plated version) the other what they call a standard production but has a blade of  7 1/8.

Speculation on ,y part but being they were all hand ground and finished may add to the anomalies in length and weight.

 

As for value I have seen examples over the last 10-15 years for a knife with no scabbard vary from $1500-$2000. Some sold some didnt. Seen them in the condition above with a scabbard or M6 scabbard for $2500. Price can be subjective and not always easy to pin down. Ebay is often raft with some high expectations of prices and the mind set of throw a number out and see if it sticks. Granted examples in  excellent condition can fetch some higher prices at auctions but then there are fees as well to both parties if a buyers commission or sellers commission is typically involved.

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Here are a couple of photos from the Allied Fighting Knife book.

 

Photo 1: The smooth grip plated knife is stated to be a factory prototype  owed by Col Baldwin who is credited in the book for designing the Skull Crusher pommel. Of the 3 prototypes the book states one was given to Col Baldwin, One to General Frederick and the 3rd was retained by the Case Factory. Both knives in this picture are credited to Col.Baldwin in the book

 

The second photo shows the prototype on left, a "sample" knife center(smooth grip) and a "issue" production knife. The variations in blade length and grips styles are seen.

 

 

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EmperorWangDong

Very interesting, I suppose I need to pick up that book. I own a V-42 and have never seen a smooth handled variant! Another one to be on the look out for... 😲

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Raventree

Thank you both for your input! I do have an ebay store where I was going to list it, but not until I could verify claiming it to be original. And as you said, the higher priced ones seem to remain unsold. The most fun I have with ebay is learning the history/meaning/stories behind the old items I've sold. It's always fascinating the things I learn. Thank you again for your comments and sharing your knowledge. 

 

Is it permitted or desired on this forum to share links to the ebay listing? 

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  • 2 months later...
stemereshop

Hello can anyone confirm this is a copy or a real v42, blade length is 17.5cm which is about 1 inch shorter than states in book, thank you just never had one in my hands to examine

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