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British pocket knife

Article about: Hi All, Just picked up this really nice example of a british pocket knife dated 1941. Its a Humphrey radiant blade (whatever significance that has). Ive read these types were used by the nav

  1. #1

    Default British pocket knife

    Hi All,

    Just picked up this really nice example of a british pocket knife dated 1941.
    Its a Humphrey radiant blade (whatever significance that has). Ive read these types were used by the navy but the ones like this with the spike were used by the army.

    Any more info would be great

    British pocket knife

    British pocket knife

    British pocket knife

    British pocket knife

    Cheers

    Relic

  2. #2

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    I understand this is a Navy issue pocket knife, the spike useful for rope work, splicing that sort of thing. "Sheffield" being the centre of Britain's cutlery industry. I'm not sure about the "1941" and military issue arrow head stamp, to me it looks like it might be recent, but I could be wrong. This knife is actually in very good order, many of these were used for years and the blades sharped down to the bone.

  3. #3

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    Excellent,
    I just re read the info I saw and it says those that have the can opener as well as the spike were army and not the spike as you said. Either way it is a really nice knife and wasn't expensive. It came from a reputable dealer at an antiques fair in Newmarket, Uk yesterday.

    There is also a number 4 on the spike but again I have no idea on the significance of that.

  4. #4

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    Quote by Anderson View Post
    I understand this is a Navy issue pocket knife, the spike useful for rope work, splicing that sort of thing. "Sheffield" being the centre of Britain's cutlery industry. I'm not sure about the "1941" and military issue arrow head stamp, to me it looks like it might be recent, but I could be wrong. This knife is actually in very good order, many of these were used for years and the blades sharped down to the bone.
    The marlin spike does have naval connotations but this type was issued to the Army (and for that matter the RAF) too.

    I myself was issued (in the Army) a more modern marlin spike type in the '70s.

    There is nothing wrong with the Broad Arrow (aka Crow's Foot) on this one. It was always quite crude looking.

    Humphreys Radiant is simply the makers name (who produced the complete item) and is one of many who produced these in the Sheffield area (much like Solingen in Germany).

    As an aside it is interesting to note that like many producers of war materiel this company also had major non-military production. They made "Radiant" gas fires / heaters that many in the UK and around the world will know of.

    It is expected that this would not be expensive as just about every militaria fair these days tends to throw up a few, sometimes boxes of hundreds that have been badly stored in cosmolene for decades. They should be readily available at around 5 and I know of people collecting these by maker.


    Here are a few equivalents over the years;

    L to R;

    My '70s issue with spike (also issued without at various times over the years)
    WWII type with spike.
    Naval type issued until the '80s
    My Grandad's WWI type with no govt marks at all.

    All knives made in Sheffield.

    British pocket knife

    I hope this helps.

    Regards

    Mark
    Last edited by Watchdog; 08-14-2017 at 12:29 PM. Reason: typo
    "War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. A man who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing he cares more about than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature with no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."

  5. #5

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    Quote by Watchdog View Post
    It is expected that this would not be expensive as just about every militaria fair these days tends to through up a few, sometimes boxes of hundreds that have been badly stored in cosmolene for decades. They should be readily available at around 5 and I know of people collecting these by maker.
    Those badly stored ones are post-War Belgian knives (identical except for the markings) and those are cheap. Good WW2-dated examples aren't that cheap, unless you have a lucky find.

  6. #6

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    This one was 18 which for a knife of this quality and condition I thought was very reasonable. Ive seen ones in worse condition selling for a lot more. But I am happy at the 18 mark as the quality feels worth it.

  7. #7

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    Quote by earlymb View Post
    Those badly stored ones are post-War Belgian knives (identical except for the markings) and those are cheap. Good WW2-dated examples aren't that cheap, unless you have a lucky find.
    I know the ones you mean but I promise you there are a large number of British ones out there too.

    The one in my picture is WWII dated (very hard to read I admit but easier in hand) and came out of just such an old boxfull at the War & Peace show just 4 years ago and it was 3.

    Regards

    Mark
    "War is an ugly thing, but not the ugliest of things. A man who has nothing for which he is willing to fight, nothing he cares more about than his own personal safety, is a miserable creature with no chance of being free unless made and kept so by the exertions of better men than himself."

  8. #8

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    Put into the sticky thread " the humble british jack knife" nice catch by the way.

  9. #9

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    This is mine, a 5 find at a general antiques show. Made by 'Sheffield Steel Products':


    British pocket knife

    British pocket knife

    I have never seen a Ww2 marked one in the 'rusty' boxes, but I'll have a better look next time. Most people just assume they are the Belgian ones.

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