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GUNS Magazine June 2012 Digital Edition - Page 48

Supplement your vintage guns with edged weapons of the day. Pat Covert hen it comes to vintage firearms, GUNS readers are among the most avid and knowledgeable you’ll find, and what better way to supplement your armory than with period edged weapons you can display or use right alongside your favorite guns? Similar to the firearms industry, there are several ways to collect historic knives. W If you’re a dedicated collector or user of vintage guns you can add authentic knives from the same time period as those in your arsenal. If this is your endeavor make sure you’re buying authentic pieces. In fine condition these knives can go big bucks and, as with most collectibles that command higher prices, there will always be unscrupulous individuals who will try to make a fast buck. Just as in the firearms industry, there are faithfully reproduced replicas of historic knives. These can be divided into two categories: manufactured and custom (handmade). As you would expect, manufactured knives are much easier on the budget and the quality can range from very high to very low. Some factory reproductions are still being made by the original manufacturers; a bonus when it comes to adding an added measure of authenticity to your collection. If you’re going to use the knife be sure to buy one built for hard use and not one solely intended for display. Custom knives are generally well made, but in many, indeed most cases, you’ll pay more. The good news is there are plenty of options and you can find just about anything you want at gun shows, retail outlets, and on internet auction houses. Most of the knives we’ll feature here are modern (and available today as such) both easy on the wallet and strong enough for field use. Steeled In Battle Ontario Knife Co. offers two legends: the Mark 3 Navy SEALS knife (top), and the M7 Bayonet with M10 scabbard (bottom). This Rifleman’s knife (top), a custom by Taylor Knives, is essentially a scaled down saber. At bottom is a small Damascus skinner by Silver Stag Knives. Fans of World War II period firearms are in luck! Manufacturers such as KA-BAR and Ontario Knife Company (OKC) offer faithful reproductions of edged steel from this era, including the enduring USMC Mark 2 Fighting Knife (also referred as the Fighting/Utility), Mark 3 Navy SEAL Knife, M7 Bayonet with M10 scabbard, and Air Force Pilot Survival knife. (Note: Union Cutlery produced the Mark 2 under the KA-BAR brand. Camillus Cutlery—the first to produce the knife—did not use the Mark 2 stamp, nor did two other wartime suppliers of the knife—Robeson Cutlery and the PAL Cutlery—as similar versions were adopted by other branches of the military). KA-BAR’s current version of the Mark 2 Fighting Knife is relatively unchanged since its introduction in 1942 (a few improvements have been added over the decades) and the company offers a wide range of commemoratives. Boker makes a faithful reproduction of the M3 US Military 1943 Trench Knife, including the M8 sheath, which influenced the design of the M4 bayonet. Daggers For shock and awe nothing beats the WWII daggers. The Fairbairn Sykes Fighting Knife, developed by William Ewart Fairbairn and Eric Anthony Sykes as issued to British commandos and SAS, exemplifies the breed of Allied daggers during the war. Originally produced by 48 W W W. G U N S M A G A Z I N E . C O M • J U N E 2 0 1 2

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