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Lan-Cay bayonet variants


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The bayonet on top came new in the wrap with a 1999 contract label. It has contoured grips, Lan-Cay marked latch plate and blade, The scabbard is the current model without stone, Lan-Cay marked body and 2003 dated fastex buckle.

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The bayonet on the bottom has early round grips, blank latch plate, and a Lan-Cay stamped blade. The scabbard is an earlier model with stone, LanCay marked body and a 2003 dated fastex buckle and an arms room rack number.

 

The bayonet in question in the middle has all the features of a current specification bayonet ( like the one on top) but with early grips, like the one on the bottom. The bayonet came with the same current model scabbard as the bayonet on top with a 2000 dated fastex buckle.

 

A site (http://www.m9m4.com, page#27) I have been reading says that LanCay used two different manufactured types of blades on a single contract. If so, then could LanCay have used early model grips on current specification product improved bayonets?

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The problem with identifying variants of an M9 is that they are modular. Any blade, pommel or latchplate could be swapped out with a different one from any number of sources; even different makers. If we suppose that the middle M9 is unaltered, then it is possibly a commercial product put together by Lan-Cay without regard for the standards of their military contracts. Could an early handle be put on a later military contract piece? Maybe, but the "ergo" handle was specifically requested by the military and would likely be noticed. The Lan-Cay marked latchplate is usually considered a commercial piece, but I haven't heard of anyone saying for sure that none have been used on military contracts. Nice M9s non-the-less. Keep in mind that better informed forum members might weigh in with more information.

Marv

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The problem with identifying variants of an M9 is that they are modular. Any blade, pommel or latchplate could be swapped out with a different one from any number of sources; even different makers. If we suppose that the middle M9 is unaltered, then it is possibly a commercial product put together by Lan-Cay without regard for the standards of their military contracts. Could an early handle be put on a later military contract piece? Maybe, but the "ergo" handle was specifically requested by the military and would likely be noticed. The Lan-Cay marked latchplate is usually considered a commercial piece, but I haven't heard of anyone saying for sure that none have been used on military contracts. Nice M9s non-the-less. Keep in mind that better informed forum members might weigh in with more information.

Marv

Thank you Marv,

 

The presence of the Lan-Cay marked latch plate concerned me also. But my current specification M9 that came new in the wrap has one.

It seems LanCay was having financial problems and started using old first production blades to make commercial bayonets for sales outside the military. Because these early blades were being used way after they had been deemed obsolete, modern components like LanCay latch plates were used to finish them for sale to the general public.

I would be more concerned that my newest acquisition was a commercial variant if it had an earlier blade ( grey with or without fuller) marked Lan-Cay. Instead, all components are current specification to include scabbard with exception of the grips and have correct features and correct manufacturer hallmark for current specification of production. But I am hoping like you wrote ,another person/s who knows more about this subject will weigh in . As always thank you Marv for your input!

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Can't rule out that some of what we see may have all happened after the original bayonets left the factory. Hardly ever see a rack rifle with all it's original factory parts stay with it once the armory takes control of it. Rifles get cleaned and serviced in bunches and parts are considered interchangeable. Like Marv said the bayonets are modular and I can easily see groups of them being disassembled inspected and reassembled before being put back on the racks.

I wouldn't be concerned with the presence of a Lan-Cay marked latch plate on a Government contracted bayonet. They were being delivered with those by the third Lan-Cay contract. It would be nice if the parts stayed with each bayonet as they were when delivered but I don't think the Government cares very much what us collectors would want.

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Can't rule out that some of what we see may have all happened after the original bayonets left the factory. Hardly ever see a rack rifle with all it's original factory parts stay with it once the armory takes control of it. Rifles get cleaned and serviced in bunches and parts are considered interchangeable. Like Marv said the bayonets are modular and I can easily see groups of them being disassembled inspected and reassembled before being put back on the racks.

I wouldn't be concerned with the presence of a Lan-Cay marked latch plate on a Government contracted bayonet. They were being delivered with those by the third Lan-Cay contract. It would be nice if the parts stayed with each bayonet as they were when delivered but I don't think the Government cares very much what us collectors would want.

Thank you sactroop for your weighing in on my inquiry.

 

The screw heads on the top and middle bayonets look like they were never removed. Blades are unmarred and have a good amount of factory grease. The top bayonet was new in the wrap when i got it, so I am sure it was not messed with and the second one was new out of wrap with no signs of a allen wrench ever being inserted into latch plate, back strap or cutter plate screw heads. The bottom bayonet while used has all the features that a bayonet made at that time should have.

 

Thank you for the information on the latch plate. When I was in the Army bayonets were treated quite badly. Just literally thrown in a box in the arms room and locked up. But I agree if a bayonet was damaged enough to need repair what ever spare part on hand would be used. Just like all those M1 rifles and carbines.

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When the third contract for 25,000 bayonets was issued it was split between Lan-Cay and Ontario. Lan-Cay didn't want Ontario to have the advantage of using the same latch plates that they were having manufactured by an outside source so they started having Lan-Cay marked on the parts. All contract bayonets from this point forward have marked latch plates.

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When the third contract for 25,000 bayonets was issued it was split between Lan-Cay and Ontario. Lan-Cay didn't want Ontario to have the advantage of using the same latch plates that they were having manufactured by an outside source so they started having Lan-Cay marked on the parts. All contract bayonets from this point forward have marked latch plates.

 

Thank you for clearing that up. I knew of the split contract, but not that the marked latch plates were used.

Marv

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When the third contract for 25,000 bayonets was issued it was split between Lan-Cay and Ontario. Lan-Cay didn't want Ontario to have the advantage of using the same latch plates that they were having manufactured by an outside source so they started having Lan-Cay marked on the parts. All contract bayonets from this point forward have marked latch plates.

Thank you porterkids for that piece of information. Do you think that a current specification production Lan-Cay bayonet could have been finished with round grips of prior specification?

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