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Old 01-03-2017, 12:49 PM
VaTom VaTom is offline
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Default Ka-Bar USN MK2 - Stampings on blade and sheath

I have a WWII era KA-Bar USN MK2 with sheath. I purchased at an auction last year. It is in excellent condition. It has a stamping of M17 on the sheath as well as the blade (see pictures).

Does anyone know what this stamping means or for what purpose?

Thanks,

VaTom

Last edited by VaTom; 01-11-2017 at 04:07 PM.
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Old 01-03-2017, 02:08 PM
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Wild stabbing guess? An issue number for unit tracking.
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Old 01-04-2017, 08:42 AM
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Thats what I figure also. Thanks!
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Old 01-04-2017, 12:51 PM
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Where is the knife stamped and in what configuration? Also, where is the sheath stamped and what does it read? More pictures would help. I'm no expert, more student, but this information would help. More pictures would be nice too.
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Old 01-04-2017, 02:26 PM
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I am no expert in any way, but have looked at a couple "Ka-Bars" over the years, never saw one marked M17

I guess the first thing to do is to make sure it isn't a fake. I saw at usmilitaryknives.com some years back where they have a page called The KaBar page that has pictures about "the most faked knife in the world" or some such.

A "real" Ka-Bar is for sure stamped Olean New York on one side. There were 3 other official manufacturers of the USN Mark 2 Fighting Knife, but only 1 has the claim of Ka-Bar, so the OPs could for sure be a real WWII Mark 2 USN knife, but the sheath would be gray and certainly not marked M17.

There were some post 1977 commemoratives issued with a 3/8" thick pommel that are the basis for a lot of the fakes around according to the fake page

Like other posts say....more photos and descriptions of all other marks on both the knife and the sheath may help and their is a bunch of guys on this forum that are really into these Ka-Bars so real expert help will be along soon.
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Old 01-04-2017, 03:54 PM
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Here are some better pictures. It is an authentic Ka-Bar to my knowledge. The stamping "M17" looks like it was done at the unit or armory level and not by the manufacturer. Thanks for everyone's interest

Last edited by VaTom; 01-11-2017 at 04:07 PM.
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Old 01-04-2017, 05:53 PM
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What is on the other side of the sheath. USN MK2 on one side, the other should have manufacturer info. and NORD numbers I believe. The two line KA-BAR is desirable and may give some incentive to replicate.
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Old 01-04-2017, 06:30 PM
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Yes - The other side of the sheath is marked the same as in the photo you posted.

I bought this at a large auction of Militaria items that a deceased collector had accumulated over 60 years. All items were original so I trust that everything is correct on this piece. Also in the same lot with the Ka-Bar was an Air Force survival knife from the 1970's and a very poor condition M1 Carbine bayonet.

I sold those two to another collector several days later and kept the Ka-Bar and covered the cost of the purchase.
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Old 01-05-2017, 06:54 AM
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Good news, your knife is authentic and is an inventory control number stamped on USN Divers and UDT Kabar knives from the Korea or Vietnam war period. Each diver or UDT checked out their knives, the rack number was recorded in a book to the individual sailor and then checked back in.

Nice piece, worth in the $100-125 range.
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Old 01-05-2017, 10:04 AM
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Thanks - Great information!!!
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