WW2 PAL red spacer MK2 fighting knife, US Navy RH-37 marked blade, early-production 1943 NORD composition scabbard. Rare type in excellent overall condition, considering the age.
Original WW2 era famous US Navy Mark 2 “Ka-Bar” fighting knife (the link is a courtesy of Wikipedia) in rare unused condition; manufactured by PAL Cutlery. This is the scarce and desirable early-production “red spacer” type Mark 2 with the U.S. NAVY designation on the blade. MK2 is a classic American WW2 era fighting knife; this type was used in combat by the US Army and the Navy men alike in all theaters of the War. The overall condition for the set is excellent – parkerized blade has 99% of the original finish remaining; no nicks or dings on the spine; original factory edge is razor-sharp; the tip is intact.
This is the hard-to-find “red spacer” type – only the early MK2s came with the leather scabbard, and even fewer were the so-called “red spacers”. Fancy colored fiber spacers were quickly done away with to simplify the wartime production and reduce costs. Also, early leather scabbards were too fragile in the field – the leather would simply rot away after contact with seawater. Moving forward, the US armed forces procurement had quickly replaced the leather with the more durable composite composition scabbards. An early USN Mark 2 “red spacer” with original and correct all-leather sheath is VERY hard to find nowadays.
This MK2 is about 12-1/4″ / 31 cm overall; the blade is about 7″ / 17.8 cm long. Slightly used – better than average condition; the blade has been lightly sharpened, it’s razor-sharp still, including the upper “false” edge; the tip is intact. The blade’s ricasso is stamped RH-37 / PAL MADE IN U.S.A. on one side and U.S. NAVY on the other. Not the type to miss a good business opportunity, in 1940 PAL Cutlery had purchased the cutlery division of Remington Arms; tools, blanks, unfinished stock and all. After PAL moved the old Remington equipment and knife stock to Holyoke, MA, they began manufacturing knives using the left-over stock parts with the Remington emblem (RH stands for Remington Hunter). Stacked leather washers handle with red fiber spacers on both ends. An early double-thickness threaded round hammer-like steel pommel and slightly curved handguard. The handle is tight; the guard has a tiny bit of a play; no typical ding marks on the pommel or the spine of the blade – rare as such.
Original “navy-gray” NORD composition scabbard was made by Victory Plastics division of Beckwith Manufacturing (B.M. Co.). The numbers on the back indicate the very first delivery to the US Navy in November 1943. The scabbard is slightly used; a few surface scratches are noted for accuracy. During the war most of MK2s were used in the field as intended; these early “red spacer” MK2s are very hard to find VERY rare in unused, minty condition – a rare find and a great addition to any collection. This attractive WW2 PAL red spacer MK2 fighting knife has not been cleaned or tampered with in any way, it is in 100% original “as is” condition. These are the actual photos; spent brass is not included with the lot 😉
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