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WWII Steel pocket knife*** Knife, Pocket, General Purpose


Misfit 45
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The Camillus MIL-K 818 knives were made from 1957 to 2006. (There is a very rare one made and dated 1949) I do not collect these. My stainless pocket knife collection is limited to any with brass liners; WWII, "Ulster 48", although I would not mind getting a nice Camillus 1957 or the 1949. I think the 1949 will be permanently outside my realistic budget parameters.

Marv

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  • 1 month later...

Hi Folks,

Interestingly enough, I just found a much better smooth handled Kingston/US 45 pocket knife than the one that I posted in post #18. I’d like to compare it to my checkered handled Kingston/US 45, to see if the similarities warrant a second look at the possibility that these are not just “parts knives” that were thrown together for commercial sales after the war. Having seen a few of these, there seems to be a few unique features that are common to both knives.

 

 

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The most obvious similarity is the clevis markings which are identical, with Kingston on one side and U.S. 45 on the other.

 

 

post-26996-0-06991100-1545460255_thumb.jpg

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In addition, the narrow screwdriver, without the lift pin stud, is the same on each knife. This is a feature that sets the Kingston 45 apart from the more common Kingston general purpose knife.

 

 

post-26996-0-07079000-1545460455_thumb.jpg

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The main blade on the smooth handle knife is marked “USA”, while the main blade on the checkered handled knife is marked “Made in USA”.

 

However, my first smooth handled knife, in post #18, is also marked “Made in USA”.

 

In post #20, Bellumbill’s smooth knife is marked “USA”.

 

The main blade on the smooth handled knife has a “full belly” shape, while the checkered knife has more of a straight edge, however, that may be due to the knife having been sharpened.

 

 

post-26996-0-86294300-1545460816_thumb.jpg

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So, how did these smooth scaled knives get produced in the first place? I would not think that these scales were just accidentally left un-checkered.

These pocket knives with smooth scales, are not without precedence since the earliest prototypes had smooth scales. Maybe Kingston had a bunch left over from the prototypes, and just added them to the mix. In any event, other than the scales themselves, these two knives have too many similarities to ignore.

I would like to suggest that since these Kingston/US 45 knives have so many distinctive features in common, I would think that the smooth and checkered Kingston/US 45 knives were made concurrently, but with no conclusive documentation to that effect, the mystery remains unsolved. Any thoughts?

Marv

 

Thanks Dustin, for the vintage photo

 

 

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I have a " U.S. MARINE CORPS " utility knife marked CRAFTSMAN ( underlined ) on the main blade. No other markings than those two. It has a non-beveled unmarked can opener, no assist on the screwdriver and they are both on the same side. The craftsman is extremely faint. I will try to post a picture of the blade. Has anyone heard of a craftsman made Marine utility knife? It does have the brass on the bottom. If anyone has any info, I would be interested in hearing their thoughts. Thank you in advance. Dave

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This doesn't sound unusual. I've got some pictures I saved of a post-war Ulster-48 with a very clear "Craftsman" etch on the main blade.

Also at the end of WW2 several companies took knives that appear to have been leftover stock when the Government contracts were cancelled and sold them to the Boy Scouts of America. In many cases these knives had also been blade etched with the Boy Scout information. From what I've run across this went on at least until 1947, but it may have been longer. One of the images I saw was of a United States Marine Corps Kingston with the Boy Scouts blade etch.

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  • 3 months later...

Here's a pretty rare Kingston - used by General of the Army George C. Marshall (and on display at the Marshall Museum in Lexington, VA):

 

 

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I know we finally moved some threads dealing specifically with the Camillus 1949 version of these knives and pinned them.

Bringing this thread back up, reminds me that we have quite a few threads about the more general subject of the metal utility knives through out the time period from WW2 to the near present also.

Some of those threads are packed with unique and insightful information. At the same time they tend to ask five new questions for every question that seems to be answered.

I just got done digging thru the archives for the thread that Dustin started about 3 years ago showing us the contents of the Army's WW2 Infantry Board Report on the study of standardizing a pocket knife for general use by service personal. I found it on page 11 finally.

I'm proposing that we might consider collecting together at least some of these threads and possibly even creating a new category under the "Edged Weapons Reference" subform. Or maybe I'm just being selfish and lazy today. ;)

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