KA - BAR POCKET KNIVES
makes military knives, hunting, sporting and all-purpose utility knives, all
of them with a high quality.
manufactures more than 100 products and accessories of cutlery. Knives
KA-BAR are sold through independent retailers, representatives of the
manufacture, distributors and catalogues requested by mail.
The cutlery industry in
United States began in New England before 1800 when a group of cutlers from
England’s famous Sheffield Cutlery Industry banned together in small
Late 1800’s a group of
cutlers settled in the Western New York and Northern Pennsylvania area.
On April 29th
1897, a group of 38 men as an association adressed to the Secretary of the
Commonwealth applied to form a Limited Partnership dedicated to manufacture
and sell knives and pocket knives. This formation, know as Tidioute Cutlery
Company, is considered to be the beginnings of KA-BAR’s history.
The beginning of KA-BAR knives was on April 29th
1897 when the Tidioute Cutlery Company was founded.
A year later the
weapons production and sale of this company started.
About 1900 the
Tidioute Cutlery Company experienced financial difficulties and it was
On April 1902
Wallace R. Brown bought the assets of the Tidioute Cutlery Company. Two
months later, a new association headed by Mr Brow applied to the Governor of
Pennsylvania to form a corporation called Union Razor Company Union Razor
Company to the purpose of manufacturing and selling cutlery
April the new Company was absolutely working with Brown as Chairman and CEO.
of January of 1909 the Company’s name (Union Razor Company) changed to Union
Cutlery Company to reflect more exactly the products manufactured by it.
In 1910, the City
of Olean (New York), approached Wallace Brown and the company’s Directors
and proposed the relocation of the company to their city.
On December of
following year, in the State of New York, a new corporation was registered
as Union Cutlery Company creating two incorporations to this company: the
original in Tidioute (Pennsylvania) and the one set up by Wallace Brown in
Olean (New York). With the Olean facility operating successfully, the
Tidioute, Pennsylvania plant is closed down.
In 1912 operations
were in full move to Union Cutlery Company’s new location at 434 North Ninth
The 1920’s were a
transition period during the signs embellished the blades and the handles of
the older Union Razor knives and newer model Union Cutlery knives and pocket
knives. During this period trademarks like OLCUT, KEENWEEL and KA-BAR, were
In 1924, Wallace
Brown, since an illness, died. His brother Emerson Brown, assumed quickly
the role of Company President.
Emerson Brown, who was president until his death, was superseded
nephew Danforth Wallace, the older Company President’s son.
Soon after, during
World War II, the Union Cutlery Company started to manufacture Ka-Bar
branded knife to the US Marine Corps for issue to fighting personnel.
In spite of the
original design was not up to par, the Marine Corps accepted the design of
the knife and began to produce it as their fighting knife.
KA-BAR knives were the sharp weapons
by American soldiers during World Ward II.
Due to its
role in the War, the KA-BAR name had achieved such a high level of fame that
Danforth and the directors of the company decided to change the corporate
name to KA-BAR Cutlery, Inc. dropping the Union Cutlery name entirely.
On March 1960 Danforth Brown
died and since then the company changed of hands several times
In 1961 Brown family sold
KA-BAR sold KA-BAR to two Olean businessmen who in turn sold it to a group
of business entrepreneurs. After some attempts to reorganize the company was
forced into liquidation. With the intention of re-establishing the business,
Robinson Knife Company purchased the assets of the company.
later, Robinson Knife Company sold the KA-BAR operations to Cole National
Corporation in Cleveland (Ohio).
In 1975, as a
part of its efforts to revive the company, KA-BAR establishes a special
Collectors’ Division. Its intention was to produce significant and
commemorative knives to recreate famous antique KA-BAR knives and actively
support the enjoyment of knife collecting in gener
A year later
this new department produced its first knife: a full dress version of the
USMC fighting and utility knife, produced in limited number.
commemorative was so enthusiastically received that the company returned the
knife, in its standard issue form, to regular production.
In 1982 the
Cole National Corporation felt in a difficulty period in his business in the
sales of knives and penknives. During liquidation the KA-BAR production line
was purchased by American Consumer Products and moved to Solon (Ohio).
In 1996 the
production line and assets were sold to Alcas Corporation Of Olean.
At the end of
the following year, the cutlery KA-BAR Knives Inc. enhanced its national
product distribution with the addition of five manufacturing representative
firms whose territory spanned the entire Unites States.
KA-BAR celebrated its 100th years of business.
KA-BAR moved to its current location in Olean (New York) in 200 Homer Street
¿How KA-BAR got its name?
its introduction in the mid-1920’s, the KA-BAR trademark became widely know
and respected. There are a lot of versions about how the KA-BAR name came
to be, but all indicate to a letter received from a fur trapper. The fur
trapper recommendation was the most significant ever received by the
trapper wrote, in very rough English, that his gun had jammed and that he
had relied in his knife to kill a wounded bear that was attacking him. In
thanking the company for its quality product the fur trapper described how
using his knife had killed the bear. All that was legible of his scrawled
writing was k a bar. The company was so honoured by this testimonial
that they adopted this phrase and used it as their trademark, KA-BAR.
The most famous KA-BAR knife:
the American legend, the USMC
On December 9th
1942, after the start of World War II, the United States Marine Corps
adopted this knife as his fighting knife in hopes that it would become
general issue to that branch of the military. Working together with the
Marine Quartermaster Department a design was devised and soon production was
under way on a new and improved fighting and utility knife for the Marines.
When the war
front grew, the demand for these knives was so great that the KA-BAR factor
alone could not keep up. The government assigned several knife companies to
create similar knives as supplemental pieces for those serving the War.
War, KA-BAR production grew more than a million of knives. Soon, the KA-BAR
knives became so well recognized for their quality and due to abundant in
number that KA-BAR became the name by which the great majority of the
population name this pattern of knife without concerning the weapon had been
manufactured by KA-BAR.
were used to carry out daily tasks as pounding tent stakes, opening ration
cans and digging foxholes, driving nails, not to mention defending lives.
Growing so in
popularity and earning only the greatest respect, the KA-BAR was adopted by
not only the Marines, but also the Army, the Navy, COSAT Guards and
Underwater Demolition Teams.
after World War II, many KA-BAR were unofficially used by Korea, Vietnam,
and in the Desert Storm and in the Iraqi Freedom conflicts.
dependability and the consistent quality of wartime KA-BARs was the result
of constant strict quality control procedures by KA-BAR workers and
supervisors as well the US Marine Corps and Navy Supply inspectors who were
assigned to the KA-BAR cutlery to work along with company personnel to
accomplish this goal.
USMC KA-BAR knife is the most famous of all those of company and one of
most coveted by collectors.
These high levels of quality were
kept in 1976 when the production was reintroduced to commemorate the Marine
Corps 200th Anniversary of service to the United States.
Then, the factory in Olean,
together with some of its original craftsmen, undertook the job of creating
a full dress model, a Limited Edition Commemorative that would prove
to be most meaningful to the Marines.
Using the original blue prints
that had been stored in the company archive files. The recreated knife was a
true work of art that retained the look, feel and performance of the
original battle ready to the battle three decades before. The first one of
its kind, serialized with the number 1, was presented to the Commandant of
the Corps and was later put on display at the USMC Museum ad Quantico.
The USMC commemorative was
received so enthusiastically that it became obvious that the original KA-BAR
fighting and utility knife had retained its popularity through the years.
The limited production Commemorative was so quickly taken up by the Marines,
knife enthusiast and collectors that KA.BAR decided to return it to regular
production in its standard form. With only a few changes made possible by
modern technology, the KA-BAR fighting and utility knife was reintroduced.
Today, the original USMC fighting
and utility knife remains the fists choice for many Marines who choose to
carry it as their personal knife in their missions. This knife also is a
favourite of adventurers, survivalist, outdoor sportsmen and, of course,
collectors who know that this knife, this American Legend, deserves a
place in their collection.
¿How KA-BAR knives are made?
Making a quality KA-BAR product
requires the talent of experienced craftspeople performing dozens of
processes with precision and skill. Each knife undergoes specific
manufacturing processes to ensure corrosion resistance, strength, edge
holding ability, and an out-of-the-box razor sharp cutting edge. Some of
these manufacturing processes are the following:
Using a 100 ton blanking press KA-BAR can blank out nearly 9,000 blades in
one full day of operation.
Tang Stamping is often used to identify a product’s
manufacturer, the country in which the product was made, and an item number.
The process of stainless steel
blades elaboration of KA-BAR knives needs three steps:
In the first, blades run trough a
70 foot (about 21 meters) conveyor that takes approximately an hour to
In the second step the KA-BAR
stainless steel blade is cryogenically froze to -120º F (-152º C) to
optimise blade performance.
The third action consists in
tempering stainless steel blades for approximately 7 hours in a walk-in oven
enhances steel toughness.
KA-BAR knives have flat or hollow ground blades. Flat grinds are best for
jobs with which there will be great lateral stress. Hollow grinds provide a
fine, extremely sharp edge perfect for more delicate tasks.
Leather Handle Compression:
compressing leather washers on to the tang, shaping and colouring them, and
then fastening them on with a pinned-on butt cap accomplish KA-BAR’s famous
oval-shaped leather handle construction.
The butt cap or pommel is attached to the handle of a
knife with a steel pin. The pin is inserted into the butt cap, driven part
way though the tang, then ground off and painted.
Each KA-BAR knife is subject to a multiple step inspection process before
being released for shipping.
SOME KA-BAR KNIVES
TDI LDK (LAST DITCH KNIFE):
One of newer KA-BAR knives. It has a similar size of a credit card. It sharp
weapon KA-BAR can be concealed just about anywhere: pin it under a tactical
vest strap, hang it around the neck, or carry it in the wallet. This backup
knife is intended to be readily available as the Last Ditch attempt at
defence when all other weapons have been removed. Este cuchillo de
reserva se ha pensado para estar fácilmente disponible en ocasiones
desesperadas cuando el resto de armas han sido quitadas.
It is sold with a hard plastic friction sheath and black cord
The KA-BAR TDI LDK knife is
appointed as defending weapon in last ditch situations.
US ARMY VE-VJ Day
This KA-BAR knife is appointed to military use.
The end of World
War Second was celebrated with lighting of beacons, ringing of church bells,
street parties and bonfires. Newspapers of all the war captured those
celebrations declaring the peace. This knife was decorated, with those
moments in mind, to commemorate the end of WWII. Tag stamped US ARMY. It
includes a sheath and the handle is made with leather.
With the aim of commemorate the end of WWII, was made the
US ARMY VE-VJ Day Commemorative.
Large Game Hook:
hunting knife with gut hook besides of comfortable way in the hand allowing
for complete control over every cut.
Prepared for hunting, the Precision Hunter Large Game Hook of KA-BAR adapts
the hand thanks to its ergonomic form.
KA-BAR, Straight Edge:
KA-BAR knife very practice to any use in general that has a very ergonomic
and resistant handle designed to avoid it slipped. IT is black and has a
straight blade made with carbon.
Full-size Black KA-BAR, Straight Edge
serve to any use and its blade is made with carbon.
This knife has
been decorated with carefully design blade art meant to honour the Veterans
of the Vietnam War. The blade, made with carbon, has printed US NAVY and it
includes a leather sheath.
USMC Vietnam Commemorative KA-BAR knife has stamped in its blade a
American Soldiers who fight in the Vietnam War.
This KA-BAR knife
was produced in 1998 to commemorate KA-BAR’s 100th year of business and
still remains a popular collectors’ item today. The blade is elaborated with
carbon and has an edge angle of 20 degrees. It also incorporates a leather
This well-known KA-BAR knife that commemorates 100th years since KA-BAR’s
very attractive for collectors.
Sheath with Hawk Insert:
In this sheath can be kept all the KA-BAR knifes whose blades measure 17,78
the knives with blades which are 7” (17.78 centimetres) hold in the
Sheath with Hawk Insert.
Nylon/Cordura Sheath for Folders:
This KA-BAR nylon sheath KA-BAR can be mounted vertically or horizontally on
a belt or tactical vest. It is characterized by its Velcro and snap closure.
It can keep closed knives that measure until 12.7 centimetres.
Black Nylon/Cordura Sheath for Folders
KA-BAR is ready to hold it on a belt or tactical vest.
Brown Leather, KA-BAR US NAVY: Brown leather sheath to blades which are 17,5
centimetres approximately with double protector.
KA-BAR is made with leather.
Large Black Belt
Sheath with Belt Loop:
This sheath for
KA-BAR knives are made absolutely in leather and are ready to hold it on a
belt. Also exists the version for smaller knives.
Large Black Belt Sheath with Belt Loop
can be hold on the belt and also can be
acquired the version for smaller knives.