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Greg Robinson

USMC 1219c2 Pattern Knife

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Late in 1942 the Commandant of the Marine Corps approved the 1219c2 pattern knife and it was adopted as a fighting utility knife to be issued to the Fleet Marine Force. Prior to the adoption of this knife the Marines had made do with whatever knife the could get their hands on. The Raiders had made their stilettos in 1942 but they were a specialized piece just for that one unit.

 

First to produce them was Union Cutlery forever to be known by their makers mark "KA-BAR". They were followed by PAL Blade Co, Camillus Cutlery, and Robeson Cutlery. All WW2 "KA-BAR's were issued with leather scabbards unlike the Navy which adopted a plastic scabbard in 1944. Most were unmarked but some early ones made by BOYT were marked and dated.

 

Here's a pic of an example made by PAL. That contractor had quality control issues throughout their wartime production and sometimes the blade finish will be a bit blotchy. But it's still one of my personal favorites. Their very early production came in leather scabbards marked PAL BLADE CO on the front.

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Greg Robinson "marine-kabar"

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Here's a very early production PAL knife with the marked scabbard. In recent years, all these PAL's have become tough to find....and expensive.

 

As shipped from the factory all PAL USMC knives came with a distinctive scabbard. It's always tan leather that when new has a slight reddish tint. And they all have those small headed bright steel domed rivits.

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Greg Robinson "marine-kabar"

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First to produce them was Union Cutlery forever to be known by their makers mark "KA-BAR". They were followed by PAL Blade Co, Camillus Cutlery, and Robeson Cutlery. All WW2 "KA-BAR's were issued with leather scabbards unlike the Navy which adopted a plastic scabbard in 1944. Most were unmarked but some early ones made by BOYT were marked and dated.

 

Greg, thanks for this thread on knives. You are the man when it comes to this stuff.

 

Recently, when looking at pics of Iwo Jima, I noticed a Marine on the beach that had a 1219c2 knife in a plastic scabbard. No way to tell if it was OD or Grey. Also no way to tell if he may have been a Corpsman. This could have been a USN issue knife. Do you have any ideas?


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Greg, thanks for this thread on knives. You are the man when it comes to this stuff.

 

Recently, when looking at pics of Iwo Jima, I noticed a Marine on the beach that had a 1219c2 knife in a plastic scabbard. No way to tell if it was OD or Grey. Also no way to tell if he may have been a Corpsman. This could have been a USN issue knife. Do you have any ideas?

 

Well...all I can say for sure is that the scabbard would have been the US Navy Mk 2. Since the Marine "k-bar" and Navy Mk 2 were visually identical but for markings there's no way to know about that. It could have been a Corpsman but also could have been a Marine who picked up a Navy knife and/or scabbard. Now this is an area where some collectors get annoyed with me since they insist that a Navy scabbard is not "correct" with a Marine knife and so such match ups NEVER happened. I say that is purist BS and in the real world there existed mismatched sets. Why would the Marines in the field have cared if they carried a Navy piece of gear? In fact, in some cases individual Marines may have deliberately chosen the Navy Mk 2 scabbard because of a personal preference. All we can say for sure is that "as issued" the Marine 1219c2 came with a leather scabbard. What happened after that will be argued forever.


Greg Robinson "marine-kabar"

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I will find the pic again and take a pic of the scabbard.

 

Do you have any info on the green version of the MK2 scabbard? I have one of those with a Ka-Bar marked knife.

 

All the Mark 2 knife scabbards I own are a grey green color shade and I don't believe there was more than one version of this item. Same for the plastic Mark 1 knife scabbard. All were made by Beckwith Mfg Co so the paint shades shouldn't have varied that much. But paint shades do vary and they do fade due to sunlight and oxidation so that probably accounts for the variations.


Greg Robinson "marine-kabar"

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**PLEASE NOTE: THIS COMMUNITY MEMBER, SADLY, HAS PASSED AWAY**

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This is the pic of the MK2 on Iwo. After studying this pic a little closer I wonder if he is a Marine.

 

There is at least one other man in the background that is outfitted the same as this man. He does appear to be wearing the USMC P41 uniform and not the USN copy of it which is a darker OD. BUT... he has no helmet cover and no leggings. There is no sign of a weapon or corpsman bags. His canteen covers appear to be the army type rather than the USMC type. I wonder if he might be part of a USN Beachmaster Unit.

 

On another note. I went back to take pics of the OD MK2 scabbard. The scabbard and web hanger appear to be OD rather than grey. It is not painted after the original factory paint job but it appears to be some sort of dye job. On the inside of the belt hanger I lifted the knife securing strap and you can see grey under it. The OD color is complete other than these protected areas. It may have been dipped in some sort of dye. I think it is so suttle a color change that it won't show well on the web. The knife isn't a KaBar but rather a Robeson Shuredge. That made me happy since I obviously had forgotten that.

 

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This is the pic of the MK2 on Iwo. After studying this pic a little closer I wonder if he is a Marine.

 

There is at least one other man in the background that is outfitted the same as this man. He does appear to be wearing the USMC P41 uniform and not the USN copy of it which is a darker OD. BUT... he has no helmet cover and no leggings. There is no sign of a weapon or corpsman bags. His canteen covers appear to be the army type rather than the USMC type. I wonder if he might be part of a USN Beachmaster Unit.

 

Looking at the Navy scabbard, uncovered helmet, and strap across the back that might be attached to a Corpsman "unit 3" bag I'd say good chance this man is Navy.


Greg Robinson "marine-kabar"

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Corpsman ...guys thats a USN Gas Mask bag.....:-)

 

Looks like a Navy MK1 not a MK 2 to me going on the legnth of it...notice its not as long as his canteen and cover

 

Regards

 

Lloyd


What do you need another one of those for.....you have 6 of them already ?.........

:blink:

 

my girlfriend to me on a regular basis as another piece of US WW2 "Green stuff" aka militaria arrives in the post..:-)

post-2-0-10415400-1477335312.jpg

 

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Corpsman ...guys thats a USN Gas Mask bag.....:-)

 

Looks like a Navy MK1 not a MK 2 to me going on the legnth of it...notice its not as long as his canteen and cover

 

Regards

 

Lloyd

 

Lloyd

 

I think you got us on the gasmask bag :D

 

But look again at that knife....isn't the hilt a bit too "fat" for the Mk 1? Doesn't it appear to have grooves in it?


Greg Robinson "marine-kabar"

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**PLEASE NOTE: THIS COMMUNITY MEMBER, SADLY, HAS PASSED AWAY**

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Hey buddy possibly but that may be a picture distortion..i was going on the 2nd picture where the pommel seems to be the typical R H Pal 35/36 type aluminium "OVAL" pattern..you can see it above the retaining strap....sure dont look like a MK2 pommel to me buddy ?

 

regards

 

Lloyd


What do you need another one of those for.....you have 6 of them already ?.........

:blink:

 

my girlfriend to me on a regular basis as another piece of US WW2 "Green stuff" aka militaria arrives in the post..:-)

post-2-0-10415400-1477335312.jpg

 

donation2007.gifdonation2008.gifdonation2009.gifdonation2010.gifdonation2013.gifdonation2016.gifdonation2018.gifdonation2019.gif

 

 

 

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Guest desert guy
Well...all I can say for sure is that the scabbard would have been the US Navy Mk 2. Since the Marine "k-bar" and Navy Mk 2 were visually identical but for markings there's no way to know about that. It could have been a Corpsman but also could have been a Marine who picked up a Navy knife and/or scabbard. Now this is an area where some collectors get annoyed with me since they insist that a Navy scabbard is not "correct" with a Marine knife and so such match ups NEVER happened. I say that is purist BS and in the real world there existed mismatched sets. Why would the Marines in the field have cared if they carried a Navy piece of gear? In fact, in some cases individual Marines may have deliberately chosen the Navy Mk 2 scabbard because of a personal preference. All we can say for sure is that "as issued" the Marine 1219c2 came with a leather scabbard. What happened after that will be argued forever.

Regard the 'match-up' of USMC kabar with USN Mark II scabbard, I have such a combination, which I carried for sometime while on active duty. The Mk II scabbard was given to me in late 1940s by family of sailor, which I saved to someday procure appropriate kabar. The USMC kabar--sans sheath--was acquired in 1960, given to me by another Marine who had a complete example. Quite naturally, I combined these two items. When I went to Vietnam (1966), I painted the MkII scabbard a dark forrest green color and dyed the canvass green, to make it more USMC compatible. This is one way this 'match-up' occurrs. Semper Fi.

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For an Aussie trying to collect US blades, information like this is invaluable. Many, many thanks to all of you who are willing to donate their own time and knowledge.


Why run when you can walk...Why walk when you can stand...Why stand when you can sit...Why sit when you can lie down..Why lie down when you can sleep...

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Were these PAL knives used in the postwar era? OR did issuance cease after the war ended?


***Items from unit called 8th Field Depot***

[Most frequently-sought unit because of family connection]

 

Intact ["out of the woodwork"] Marine Corps combat groups from WWII.

 

Unique items signed by many Marines from one unit, or inscribed with combat history.

 

Marine Corps valor recipient items.

 

Souvenirs taken by Marines with exceptional background and/or unique stories/documentation.

 

Marine Ship Detachment items from major naval engagements and those that warrant stars to ETO ribbon.

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Yes

 

There were stocks still avaialable post war.

 

Have seen Korea era Marines I have met that were issued WW2 knives.

 

You will see even the issue navy knives into the Vietnam war


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Lieutenant J.Kostelec 1-3 First Special Service Force MIA/PD 4 March 1944 Italy
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Thx Doyler!


***Items from unit called 8th Field Depot***

[Most frequently-sought unit because of family connection]

 

Intact ["out of the woodwork"] Marine Corps combat groups from WWII.

 

Unique items signed by many Marines from one unit, or inscribed with combat history.

 

Marine Corps valor recipient items.

 

Souvenirs taken by Marines with exceptional background and/or unique stories/documentation.

 

Marine Ship Detachment items from major naval engagements and those that warrant stars to ETO ribbon.

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