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British Army Knives

gb Offline MichaelGT83

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British Army Knives
on: March 05, 2021, 03:31:13 PM
I know, I know, they're not *Swiss*, but I got my hands on these today;


(Photos aren't as good as I'd hoped, full stainless steel plus artificial lighting alongside a camera phone doesn't work well! :dunno:)

From top to bottom: a locking 2-piece knife with sheepfoot blade, "can opener tool" and a build in screwdriver; a non-locking 2-piece knife; a non-locking 3-piece knife with an additional marlin spike.



Lockable two piece;


Two piece;


Three piece;


Decent enough knives, although the blades/openers are quite stiff right now - even with the visible oiling from the factory. I'm sure that will ease over time/with extra oiling, though. The locking mechanism seems a bit iffy as well, takes a lot of effort on the first try and then the blade suddenly flings back... I'm not sure if they'll get much use, or if they'll just be around to be admired, but they're certainly nice to have.

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us Offline cody6268

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #1 on: March 05, 2021, 04:04:01 PM
I have some old designs (dating back to the Great War, as one is a Wostenholm that was part of a 500,000 knife Canadian order in 1917), as well as some newer ones. Most are pretty good quality, except for these.  I have the two-piece myself, and the quality was really bad. The main blade liked to strike the backspring (causing a bad chip), the can opener was pretty much decorative, and the steel was really, really soft. I bought a Captain Currey (actually a budget version they make for R. Murphy Knives here in the States), and the quality was much, much better---and it cost half as much. I paid almost $40 for the "tourist" version without NSN markings or the Broad Arrow. I'm really wanting the lockback with the proper British Army markings (NSN and Broad Arrow). I sure hope yours are much better.

I'm a big fan of the Italian copies that show up on a number of surplus retailers. The one surplus store I do business with wants $20 for a two-pack--with the two and three-piece models being offered.  I bought two of the three-piece models with marlinspike. While the edges need work, fit and finish-wise, they are great. Marlinspikes, as a tool, are a really handy thing to have. They put the fish scaler to shame as a general-purpose poking tool, in addition to being invaluable in their intended purpose.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2021, 04:11:18 PM by cody6268 »


us Offline Barry Rowland

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #2 on: March 05, 2021, 04:19:07 PM
Great looking knives!  I need to pick one up.
Barry


gb Offline MichaelGT83

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #3 on: March 05, 2021, 05:28:21 PM
I have some old designs (dating back to the Great War, as one is a Wostenholm that was part of a 500,000 knife Canadian order in 1917), as well as some newer ones. Most are pretty good quality, except for these.  I have the two-piece myself, and the quality was really bad. The main blade liked to strike the backspring (causing a bad chip), the can opener was pretty much decorative, and the steel was really, really soft. I bought a Captain Currey (actually a budget version they make for R. Murphy Knives here in the States), and the quality was much, much better---and it cost half as much. I paid almost $40 for the "tourist" version without NSN markings or the Broad Arrow. I'm really wanting the lockback with the proper British Army markings (NSN and Broad Arrow). I sure hope yours are much better.

I'm a big fan of the Italian copies that show up on a number of surplus retailers. The one surplus store I do business with wants $20 for a two-pack--with the two and three-piece models being offered.  I bought two of the three-piece models with marlinspike. While the edges need work, fit and finish-wise, they are great. Marlinspikes, as a tool, are a really handy thing to have. They put the fish scaler to shame as a general-purpose poking tool, in addition to being invaluable in their intended purpose.

The quality seems fine on these so far, although they've not had a proper run out yet. I'll give the can openers a proper go over the weekend to see how they are, but it is just the stiffness of the tools that seemed to be an issue. It might be an excuse to sit and fidget with them, though...

I'll keep an eye out for the Italian copies, for reasearch prurposes and all that... It's the first tool I've owned with a proper marlinspike, it's like a weapon in it's own right; if I can get the can opener on the three-piece sorted I think that's the one that will see the most use.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2021, 05:51:37 PM by MichaelGT83 »
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us Offline Rich S

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #4 on: March 05, 2021, 06:34:56 PM
I suspect these are modern made by the holding company (Egginton) that bought the Wostenholm and Rodgers trademarks.
Rich
« Last Edit: March 05, 2021, 06:58:07 PM by Rich S »
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gb Offline MichaelGT83

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #5 on: March 05, 2021, 09:12:43 PM
I suspect these are modern made by the holding company (Egginton) that bought the Wostenholm and Rodgers trademarks.
Rich

Aye, the site I got them from (Samuel Staniforth) states they're all made to order.
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gb Offline MichaelGT83

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #6 on: November 02, 2021, 01:50:27 PM
Got my hands on a one piece version today. I've not seen many of these about.





A pity about the slight nick in the blade, but it's going to be more of a collector's piece for me than a user, so hey...

I've not had chance to try the Italian copies yet. I've only given the can openers on the two/three piece knives one attempted run out and... it didn't end well. I'll try again at some point.

As for the manufacturing... It turns out Egginton produce 'proper' versions which are supplied to the MOD, and then there's the "Simply Sheffield" versions. It doesn't suggest there's a difference in quality, but you do have to wonder...

https://www.eggintongroup.co.uk/products/military-knives.html

https://www.eggintongroup.co.uk/brands/joseph-rodgers/military-knives/two-piece-army-clasp-knife.html
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gb Offline Tasky

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #7 on: November 02, 2021, 08:40:59 PM
I never got issued one myself and had to make do with an Imperial one they had in the NAAFI shop, but several of the blokes had them. They were not often highly spoken of, so I suspect the issue versions were "made to a budget"...
The few times I did get to borrow one, I recall it being somewhat uncomfortable to hold. Part of me still wants one, part of me really thinks otherwise!


gb Offline MichaelGT83

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #8 on: November 02, 2021, 10:00:43 PM
Yeah, these certainly don't seem the most comfortable to hold or use. The stiffness of the backsprings is nail breaking and the locking one isn't easy to close without losing a finger... I think Vic should open a factory in Sheffield and show them how it's done...
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gb Offline Fast Bill

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #9 on: November 02, 2021, 10:18:47 PM
 :iagree: But then the RAF Hunter comes close
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gb Offline MichaelGT83

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #10 on: November 02, 2021, 10:28:47 PM
Ooh, now that's nice. :like:
We have the tools, we have the talent!


nl Offline EMZ

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #11 on: November 03, 2021, 05:06:15 PM
The RAF Hunter is so beautiful !

Here pictures of a genuine BAK clasp knife, straight from the box.

* PB038439b.jpg (Filesize: 86.71 KB)

* PB038438b.jpg (Filesize: 90.08 KB)


nl Offline EMZ

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #12 on: November 03, 2021, 05:11:31 PM
Sorry guys, I don't know what digital problems I'm up to, but it seems my pictures are published twice, with very large format. No idea how or wy!


gb Offline MichaelGT83

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #13 on: November 03, 2021, 05:38:48 PM
Sorry guys, I don't know what digital problems I'm up to, but it seems my pictures are published twice, with very large format. No idea how or wy!

Don't worry, it's something the admin are aware of and working on!

That's a lovely looking knife, though. :tu:
We have the tools, we have the talent!


us Offline Farmer X

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #14 on: November 03, 2021, 06:45:39 PM
Pictures of a genuine BAK clasp knife, straight from the box.
Looks to be unused, too...awlways nice to find an old knife in such condition!

I assume "SSN" is equivalent to an NSN (National Stock Number). Here in the States, "SSN" is used as an acronym for Social Security Number.
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us Offline hsherzfeld

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #15 on: November 04, 2021, 02:39:13 AM
Looks to be unused, too...awlways nice to find an old knife in such condition!

I assume "SSN" is equivalent to an NSN (National Stock Number). Here in the States, "SSN" is used as an acronym for Social Security Number.
Or the US Navy's hull classification symbol for nuclear attack submarines.
Current SAKs: Explorer, SwissChamp, Handyman (modded), Climber, Super Tinker, Tinker, Woodsman (modded), Electrician, Pioneer, SwissTool
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us Offline Farmer X

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #16 on: November 04, 2021, 03:48:35 AM
Or the US Navy's hull classification symbol for nuclear attack submarines.
I'd forgotten about that usage. Perhaps I can be forgiven, as I was not a submariner.
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us Offline SteveC

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #17 on: November 04, 2021, 02:52:20 PM
Here's my uncles Royal Navy knife










wales Offline GearedForwards

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #18 on: November 04, 2021, 08:17:50 PM
I know these are the iconic ones, but are our forces still issued such... WW2 economy tools? One would hope not, but it's worth asking  :facepalm:
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us Offline SteveC

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #19 on: November 04, 2021, 08:53:51 PM
I know these are the iconic ones, but are our forces still issued such... WW2 economy tools? One would hope not, but it's worth asking  :facepalm:

Don't know     :dunno:   my uncles knife is from the late 1940's early 50's


gb Offline Tasky

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Re: British Army Knives
Reply #20 on: November 04, 2021, 09:14:24 PM
I know these are the iconic ones, but are our forces still issued such... WW2 economy tools? One would hope not, but it's worth asking  :facepalm:

Yes, these are still current issue.


au Offline Echotech

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British Army Knives
Reply #21 on: November 04, 2021, 11:26:02 PM
Great knives guys :like:

They’re not a pattern I tend to carry anymore but had one as a kid and it was one of my favourite things in the world. Eventually moved first into the world of LM MT's and then SAKs as an adult but growing up the British Army knife was my constant companion

I’ve a few more Australian ones but these four are all British, bought in Australia so probably issued here :cheers:





 
 
 



« Last Edit: November 05, 2021, 12:05:17 AM by Echotech »


 

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