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  #61  
Old 07-23-2017, 06:43 PM
jeepster jeepster is offline
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Looks like Compton's sheath and Flynn's sheath were made the same day. I know that can be said about any number of sheaths but these two are so similar.
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  #62  
Old 07-23-2017, 06:58 PM
crutchtip crutchtip is offline
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What it proves Ronnie is not every Moore sheath was made to fit the knife.

Jack, I think it is quite a reach to be frank. I don't think it is tape, could be, but I would lean towards grain in the wood more than anything.
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  #63  
Old 07-23-2017, 11:55 PM
jeepster jeepster is offline
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Agree with Joe here. It isn't tape. It's burl wood.....I think. Seems to me if it was tape it would seem logical to tape over the washers too.....all the way to the brass.
Ronnie
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  #64  
Old 07-24-2017, 11:45 AM
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Jacknola Jacknola is offline
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I hope to find a better detailed picture. I could go either way, wood, tape or whatever ... but the tape idea does have some support from observations: (1) the "wood grain" seems to be diagonal or at places even perpendicular to the length of the handle, which would be unusual for wood grain cut; (2) the 5-all-medium spacer stack would be unusual for a wooden handle - 7 spacers would seem to be the standard; - see Ronnies pinned m2; (3) actually a wooden, commando shaped handle might be pretty unusual... Ronnie's is the only one I've seen though surely there were others; (4) it does appear that there is a shiny something at the butt end of the handle. I doubt that is a coulee cap.

But there is no surety given the current picture resolution. I sent LTC Steve a note asking if he had additional pictures. And given the number of pics of the DSC ceremony on the net, perhaps there is a movie-you tube. We will see. It is interesting that if we could nail down the period of the knife, it would allow some reasonable and interesting inferences about the occasion.
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  #65  
Old 07-24-2017, 12:15 PM
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Moosehead Moosehead is offline
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I just want to let the participants in this thread know that I have been following it with great interest.

It's wonderful to see new discoveries about vintage Randalls with real historical connections.

Congratulations to all of you, with special mention to Jack.

Anyway, carry on gentlemen and continue to stay calm...

Cheers!

David


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  #66  
Old 07-24-2017, 12:54 PM
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Jacknola Jacknola is offline
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Here is an interesting observation about very early WWII. Both Compton's knife and Erroll Flynn's knife have a relatively wide, thin, flat strip of leather used for the wrist thong... not at all similar to later cord-like leather thongs. Just thought I would point that out...



Also, here are a couple of older WWII example sheaths just for grins... The top blade (SS sheath?) reminds me a little of the profile of Col. Compton's knife.




Last edited by Jacknola; 07-25-2017 at 01:33 PM.
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  #67  
Old 07-24-2017, 03:10 PM
crutchtip crutchtip is offline
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Still don't think it is tape. Stuff can get gummy pretty quickly and still would't make sense for a standard knife imo. We may never know.

I think the first time I have seen tape used was on an early model 18.

WWII leather thongs were generally, at least early on, prolly 3/16" to 1/4" leather stripping. I have half a dozen sitting here now. Actually, just sent one out to a collector that was a good example. While comfortable around the wrist say versus Nam era square cut thongs, it wasn't as strong.

** Still can't post photos. Come out the size of a postage stamp.

Last edited by crutchtip; 07-25-2017 at 10:31 AM.
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  #68  
Old 07-24-2017, 04:08 PM
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Jacknola Jacknola is offline
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Roger the sense that tape would either get gummy or hard and slick... one reason why I never saw much sense in the m18 back in 1966-67-68. If tape were used I imagine it was intended to be just a short term expedient. I'm looking to find a really good picture.

Re: posting pictures, here is best way (internal server of this site creates very small pictures). You will want to prepare your picture for posting by limiting its size (or making it bigger) The ideal size is 750 pixels wide for a landscape-type picture, and about 850 pixels tall for a portrait-type picture. So to prep the picture.... put picture you want to paste into a dedicated folder or somewhere you can find it easily.

1. Right-click picture,
2. then click "open with.."
3. then click "paint."
4. On top, click "resize."
5. click the button "pixels."
6. enter "750" in horizontal box...vertical will automatically show the proper ratio pixels.
7. click "save." your picture is now 750 pixels wide which is what I use for message boards.

Now to put the picture on a free on-line hosting site enabling you to copy the code onto a message board.

8. Go to imgur.com.
9. open a free account using your e-mail and a password.
10. Go into your account, click "images."
11. Click an option "add images." the site will offer the opportunity to "drag" or "browse."
12. Click "browse" ... the site will show you your computer's menu.
13. Navigate to where your "750" picture is located,
14. Double click your picture and/or click "open" ... The picture will be added to your imgur folder.

Now to get the picture from your on-line host and put it into the message board.

15. Click the picture in your imgur folder. You will see a bunch of code options on the right. Look at the bottom one... bbc... subtitled "message board."
16. Right click inside that code box, hit "copy." You will be copying a line of code starting with [url...
17. Then go to the board where you want your picture posted, position cursor, right click, paste...code is copied into your post. Click save. Done. Picture appears in your post.

You can now use that code for other sites. Also, if you want to uses that picture again in another line, simply go to that message, click "edit," copy the picture code in the edit box and post it again elsewhere.

For multiple pictures, and comments, I usually use Word, paste all the codes of the pictures in order, and insert the text around them. Then I right click and copy the whole thing and past it all into the web site.

It sounds complicated but it really isn't once you do it the first time. All you are doing is saving your picture on a hosting site which then allows you to post the code for it anywhere on the internet. This site is free.. at least for now.

I can talk you through it if need be... E-mail me.

Last edited by Jacknola; 07-24-2017 at 06:56 PM.
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  #69  
Old 07-25-2017, 12:55 PM
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Jacknola Jacknola is offline
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LTC Steve Moore sent me an E-mail with some hi-res pictures AND some interesting information. He confirms a long-term close relationship between General Westmoreland and Hal Moore's family through Westmoreland's personal friendship with Col Compton, Gen Moore's father in law.

The hi-res pictures he sent will probably help answer many questions about the physical characteristics of this knife. It looks to be a pretty standard Heiser brown-button sheath, and the knife looks to a m2-7 (? length) and to have standard leather handle spacers- or does it? One picture looks like it might have a seven spacer stack. However, though one photo does seem to have an echo of leather washers, it is not clear that the handle is leather.. There is no standard pommel and the material still looks a little like wood or maybe Micarta in other picture... While there is no pommel, there does seem to be some kind of butt plate - but that could be a bevel in the wood, causing a reflective glint.





Probably June, 1966, Westmoreland presents Moore with DSC.



I think these two pictures may show a dark outside spacer indicating a 7-spacer stack?





April, 1962, return to LZ X-ray





My default guess will be commando shaped wood handle, possibly with a butt plate added, but more probably with a wood bevel at the butt. Given conventional wisdom and a quick look at various libraries, I will default to believing this knife has a standard 7-spacer wood handle stack. I would guess the knife is mid '50s (?)... though I would really like it if I could see a pin in the handle.

I'm open to opinions. I will probably write this story up for publication (I have been asked by an editor) and LTC Steve has given me permission - so all opinions are welcome.

Spacers would could be similar to this (7-spacer stack varied quite a bit with time)



PS: Is that a pin?


Last edited by Jacknola; 07-25-2017 at 07:31 PM.
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  #70  
Old 07-25-2017, 01:07 PM
dirty water dirty water is offline
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I agree Jack...looks like a rosewood or micarta handle, and I believe it is just a beveled end!

Fantastic work! Looking forward to the end results!

Last edited by dirty water; 07-25-2017 at 01:09 PM.
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  #71  
Old 07-25-2017, 02:35 PM
crutchtip crutchtip is offline
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I still think by what I can see it is later. It appears to be a Johnson sheath as that period Heiser or HKL sheaths tend to be pointy at the toe versus the rounded of the Johnson. Stitching also seems to follow that thought. How about a 63 vintage brown micarta?!?!
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  #72  
Old 07-25-2017, 03:10 PM
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Re: brown button Johnson, brown Micarta handle. It could be.. I'm uncertain how many horizontal keeper, brown button m2 sheaths Johnson made - I'm pretty sure very few. We do know Heiser made a lot, especially prior to the general use of the diagonal keeper.

But another issue... I'm not too familiar with whether brown Micarta was ever used with a 5-spacer stack, but the 7-spacer stack on brown Micarta I think usually used thinner white spacers than what it looks like is on this knife. (This would make a good study... the evolution of the 7-spacer stack. I started it one time and got distracted. Considerable differences are quickly apparent, but a scientific approach is needed to see if they were random or systematic.) Also, I'm not sure if Micarta was beveled on the end, but wood almost always was.

As far as timing, General Westmoreland got his ivory handled knife in 1964. It might be more reasonable to suppose he had this knife for a number of years rather than acquired in 1963. The sheath looks pretty worn ... so if the knife was 1962-3 and the presentation was in 1965, that doesn't leave a lot of time to wear the sheath. True, Vietnam field use would age a knife pretty quickly...but Gen. Westmoreland wasn't wearing this knife there.. he was always photo'd with the ivory. Truth - we just don't know... I want to be factual as possible, but I may take some literary liberties with assumptions, we will see.

I doubt we will get better information now... appreciate the suggestion, open to it. Thanks

PS: I'm becoming more convinced that is a pin in the handle. I overlaid it with Ronnie's pinned wood handle, transferred the pin portion, and the size is about right. That could help indicate an earlier date...though it is not definitive proof of course. This is one comparison picture though the comparative size of Ronnie's m2 is a little too big... it does give the general concept. Note the spacers...


Last edited by Jacknola; 07-25-2017 at 03:29 PM.
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  #73  
Old 07-25-2017, 03:31 PM
crutchtip crutchtip is offline
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seven spacer stacks were pretty standard by early-mid 50's from what I have seen and probably earlier.. The 4-6 pictured does have abnormally large white spacers from white we usually see, but I would say that is uncommon and not generally what we would expect. They appear to be from the late 40's to 1950 five medium thick range I spoke about earlier. That would explain the unusual width.

Most handles going back to pre 80's I would say had the sharp edge of the butt knocked off. I don't think there was an actual specification, but was how the guy finishing that handle did it.

Good point about the handle keeper. That certainly would lend itself more towards HKL versus Johnson, but I wouldn't make it the final word.

The sheath seems to be in pretty good condition from the head on view. Doesn't really look like it has spent much time in the field or heavily exposed to the elements.

How do we know Westmorland ever carried the model 2? Perhaps it was acquired solely to give as a gift? I imagine the General requesting a knife would get whatever he wanted lickity split.

Some of these guys bought quite a few RMK"s. There was one collection that came into a store near Bragg in a paper sack. Had large and small crutch tips, 1-6 and 1-7, and a 2-5.
All named etched to a SOG vet. All in split back riveted sheaths IIRC save for the 2-5.

So I wouldn t be surprised if Westy had more than one RMK at his disposal.

Edited to add I don't think it is pinned. The one photo shaking Westy's hand shows the handle pretty clearly, and I don't even see a glint of reflection.

Good stuff here. Photos are outstanding.

Last edited by crutchtip; 07-25-2017 at 03:50 PM.
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  #74  
Old 07-25-2017, 04:32 PM
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Jacknola Jacknola is offline
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Yeah, those were my thoughts about the pin... at first. That picture with the arrow and text box "pin?" and the one used in the comparison is a blow up from the picture of General Westmoreland shaking hands with Col. Moore. Handles and pins could get pretty grody, there are some pictures of pins being a little obscured by grime. I would like to think it is pinned .. might just declare it so... on authority of being the author LOL.
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  #75  
Old 07-25-2017, 07:23 PM
BoBlade BoBlade is offline
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The new pics don't show the "wrinkles" on the handle that I saw in the previous pics which prompted me to throw out the tape possibility. IMO it now looks like wood with 7 spacers (Although I can't rule out the 5 std). Also, I've seen more than a few 50's Randalls with non leather handles that didn't have the pin they should have.
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