Ontario PILOTS KNIFE, VIETNAM VINTAGE??

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by deltablade, Sep 3, 2019.

  1. deltablade

    deltablade Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 29, 2006
    Recently, my brother-in-law gave me this Ontario fighting knife to keep in my collection. He was in Laos during the war, maintaining aircraft, 1966-1969 and said that this knife was given to him by a pilot friend who didnt return from his mission, and that these were govt issued and popular with the aircrews. He recently replaced the sheath, as the original deteriorated. The knife blade is marked Ontario US. Is it possible that this is a Vietnam era Ontario? Incidentally, it looks just like the one carried by James Garner in the WWII movie Up Periscope; black handle, black blade, black sheath.
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    Last edited: Sep 3, 2019
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  2. GIRLYmann

    GIRLYmann

    Nov 7, 2005
    from what i understand, ontario knives won the government tender to produce
    the type of knife as in your picture
    sometime in the 1980's...
    see post #239
    https://www.bladeforums.com/threads/ask-toooj.1285004/page-12
    yes, there were vietnam war era knives of
    this pattern, but imho not very likely the ontario marked blades.
    fyi, the "U.S.N. Mark 2 / U.S.M.C. 1219C2 Fighting Utility" government knife
    contractors were...
    Camillus Cutlery Co.
    Conetta
    M.S.I.
    Ontario Knife Co.
    PAL Blade Co.
    Robeson Shuredge
    Union Cutlery Co.
    Utica Cutlery
    http://www.usmilitaryknives.com/knife_list.htm
     
    Last edited: Sep 3, 2019
  3. BladeScout

    BladeScout

    May 16, 2010
    OP, at the behest of the government, Marbles designed an early knife design meant to be issued to air crews.

    History:
    Marble produced several thousand knives for field testing and delivered them to the U.S. Air Force between 1957-1959. After the completion of testing and bidding competition between Marble, Camillus Cutlery, and the Ontario Knife Company (OKC), Camillus was awarded the contract to supply the new Jet Pilot Survival Knife (JPSK) to the Department of Defense instead of Marble. Camillus produced the knife with a 6-inch blade from 1959-1961. In 1961, updates to the military specifications called for a 5-inch blade. Camillus produced the Jet Pilot Survival Knife with a 5-inch blade from 1961-2006. It appears that in 2006, Ontario Knife Company became the current vendor to the DoD of the Jet Pilot Survival Knife under the National Stock Number (NSN): 7340-00-098-4327. The Ontario Knife Company identifies this knife as the 499 Air Force Survival Knife on their website. Additionally, OKC is the only company selling this knife commercially.

    Source and pics of the Air For Force Knife, the ASEK, the SP2 etc:
    https://majorhykr.com/2018/06/21/a-short-history-of-the-air-force-survival-knife/

    I suspect someone along the way got the knives wrong. What you have is an Ontario USN MK2. It might have been used by some pilot (who is to say) but it wasnt designed to be issued to air crews and certainly wasnt issued/made during the Vietnam conflict.
     
  4. BladeScout

    BladeScout

    May 16, 2010
    Some of mine. Vintage Camillus, vintage Ka-Bar, modern Ontario:
    [​IMG]
     
    strategy9 likes this.
  5. Patrick Bowie

    Patrick Bowie

    1
    Dec 6, 2019
  6. zzyzzogeton

    zzyzzogeton

    Feb 17, 2013
    Just came across this thread - a production dating correction - Ontario became the only "official" government contractor for the JPSK when Camillus's contract was not renewed in 1984.

    All JPSKs produced by Camillus after 1984 were for civilian sales only. These could have been through the AAFES PX system, but not as a true "military" contract. These are identifiable as they have no date stamp on a pommel facet, but have the "new" final Camillus 3 line stamp.
     
    eveled likes this.

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