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WWI U.S. "MKII" Handgrenade !

Article about: This WWI U.S. grenade has a MKI body with a MKII fuse and an unusual "spoon" or safety lever. Spoons are normally reinforced by a groove which runs down the middle. I've been told

  1. #1

    Default WWI U.S. "MKII" Handgrenade !

    This WWI U.S. grenade has a MKI body with a MKII fuse and an unusual "spoon"
    or safety lever. Spoons are normally reinforced by a groove which runs down
    the middle. I've been told by knowledgeable sources that this is an early MKII safety
    lever, but I'm inclined to think that it was just one that missed the groove-stamping process !

    ( The U.S. MKI fuse had an arming system that was somewhat flawed, and withdrawn
    from service almost immediately. The re-designed MKII type of fuse was used until
    sometime near the end of WWII. )





    Regards,




    Steve.
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  2. #2

    Default Re: WWI U.S. "MKII" Handgrenade !

    Quote by Walkwolf View Post
    This WWI U.S. grenade has a MKI body with a MKII fuse and an unusual "spoon"
    or safety lever. Spoons are normally reinforced by a groove which runs down
    the middle. I've been told by knowledgeable sources that this is an early MKII safety
    lever, but I'm inclined to think that it was just one that missed the groove-stamping process !

    ( The U.S. MKI fuse had an arming system that was somewhat flawed, and withdrawn
    from service almost immediately. The re-designed MKII type of fuse was used until
    sometime near the end of WWII. )

    Regards,
    Steve.

    Hi Steve, the "spoon" or handle is called by collectors a "short spoon" I need more pics of it to see what you are mentioning. They missed stamping the "groove" ? I have not seen one missing this groove. Please post pics to see if possible.

    I have a short spoons that is maker marked, but most are plain, no markings at all. There should be a re-enforcing rib down the back similar to a longer standard WW2 spoon, BUT the rib will not end in a "Y" at the top and it is "pressed inwards", instead of outwards. I sent good pics to my friend Lex, and he used them for his Ordnance website. He did not get my info I sent quite right, so ask me if something needs explaining, I will be happy to help.

    Here look, some more info and photos of these short spoons........
    Grenade fuze "mousetrap"

    Regards, Steve (I know, there are many of us Steve's here)
    "Dr.Ruby"
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    Last edited by Kilroy Was Here; 04-12-2010 at 07:24 PM.

  3. #3

    Default Re: WWI U.S. "MKII" Handgrenade !

    Thanks for the response and photos, Steve ! I know it's wacky, but there it is !
    See ! --- No rib !
    Not like a normal WWII or MKII type lever at all - except for the unmarked top, and
    not one I've ever seen anywhere before !


    Here's a better shot of it.
    Notice the "2" and diamond logo on the body just left of the flat "spoon"................
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  4. #4

    Default Re: WWI U.S. "MKII" Handgrenade !

    Quote by Walkwolf View Post
    Thanks for the response and photos, Steve ! I know it's wacky, but there it is !
    See - no rib !
    Not like a normal WWII or MKII type lever at all - except for the unmarked top, and
    not one I've ever seen anywhere before !


    Here's a better shot of it.
    Notice the "2" and diamond logo on the body just left of the flat "spoon"................
    Very interesting spoon. Looks very odd. How about a few good, close detailed photos of it when removed, and also the backside?

    Does your fuze still have the correct WW1 striker installed?
    Yes, It is a Diamond "F" and a 2, which is a lot number. Not sure who the Diamond F maker was, I have heard different names, but none 100% yet.

    Here's my MkI, marked Diamond F 3, and the immediate successor, the first US MkII (with "short spoon" "cut back" fuze, and the first 40 segment body).

    I have also owned a Diamond F with 7 and 14, and have seen other lot numbers also.
    There is also a Diamond "L" mark, which is Littletown Foundry who made 100's of thousands of grenades, and other ordnance during WW2 though. I have a cigarette lighter marked Diamond L, and all the other lighters you see like this, will be marked Diamond L. They were made by the Kravitt Co. in 50's.

    Regards
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  5. #5

    Default Re: WWI U.S. "MKII" Handgrenade !

    Quote by Kilroy Was Here View Post
    Very interesting spoon. Looks very odd. How about a few good, close detailed photos of it when removed, and also the backside?

    Does your fuze still have the correct WW1 striker installed?
    Yes, It is a Diamond "F" and a 2, which is a lot number. Not sure who the Diamond F maker was, I have heard different names, but none 100% yet.

    Here's my MkI, marked Diamond F 3, and the immediate successor, the first US MkII (with "short spoon" "cut back" fuze, and the first 40 segment body).

    I have also owned a Diamond F with 7 and 14, and have seen other lot numbers also.
    There is also a Diamond "L" mark, which is Littletown Foundry who made 100's of thousands of grenades, and other ordnance during WW2 though. I have a cigarette lighter marked Diamond L, and all the other lighters you see like this, will be marked Diamond L. They were made by the Kravitt Co. in 50's.

    Regards
    Love your grenades! !

    I'd like to find an original twist lever ! !
    I'll try to post a few more shots of the flat lever soon............

    Yes, mine still has the original striker and I keep it in an "armed" condition,
    but I am not sure this is a good idea. The old fuse bodies are rather weak
    and may break under the pressure.
    What do you think, and how do you keep yours?






    Regards,




    Steve.

  6. #6

    Default Re: WWI U.S. "MKII" Handgrenade !

    Quote by Walkwolf View Post
    Love your grenades! !

    I'd like to find an original twist lever ! !
    I'll try to post a few more shots of the flat lever soon............

    Yes, mine still has the original striker and I keep it in an "armed" condition,
    but I am not sure this is a good idea. The old fuse bodies are rather weak
    and may break under the pressure.
    What do you think, and how do you keep yours?


    Regards,

    Steve.


    Hi Steve, sorry, I missed this question you asked. Thank you, I like WW2 grenades. I have a few US grenades, most of the examples I wanted. If you keep looking , you will find a twist lever-side swing fuze, but not too not easy. They are a bit hard to find, and usually attached to a grenade body also......so you can pay $350- $1000 I have seen them go for.

    I always keep my fuzes in the armed-cocked position, if the fuzes body is in good condition. I do not think it harms them at all. If you see the pic of striker spring above, it looks brand new, and is almost 100 years old.

    In fact, with the side swing fuzes, if the lever is not held in place by the striker pressure, the lever will just flop around usually. I also like that you can see the striker, and the difference between WW1 and WWII strikers when on display.

    Regards, Steve
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  7. #7

    Default Re: WWI U.S. "MKII" Handgrenade !

    Hey Steve. Great collection ! !

    I've got about half your amount of grenades, and only three or four nice ones.
    I pick them up when they appear, or when the price is right.
    (My WWI MKII was $275. a couple of years ago.)

    They are harder to come by up here in the North Country !






    Regards, Steve.

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