The Ka-Bar USMC 1217 Is a Staple Combat Knife

It’s an age-old trope in TV and films that in a fight scene, when it’s down to the hero and main villain and it’s personal, it’s knives instead of guns. When you’re in a pickle like that, the combat knife you choose—and of course, your skillset—is of utmost importance. There’s no combat knife like the Ka-Bar, which was first adopted by the U.S. Marine Corps in November 1942. It was introduced as the 1219C2 combat knife, later designated the USMC Mark 2 combat knife. The knife was designed to serve U.S. troops during World War II. 

There were many complaints from Army soldiers and Marines who were using World War I-era bronze or alloy-handled trench knives for hand-to-hand combat. The Mark I trench knife used at the time was expensive and time-consuming to manufacture. It was also reported that the fingerguard handle made it hard to secure and limited grip positions. The blade was also relatively thin and prone to breaking even during common tasks like cutting wire. The War Department finally determined a need for a new multipurpose knife, bringing in the popular Mark 2 to fruition.

Durable materials and construction

Ka-Bar Knives, Inc. makes a wide variety of knives and cutlery, but are best known for the namesake knife in question. The Ka-Bar camobat knife traditionally uses a 7-inch 1095 carbon steel clip point blade and leather-washer handle. This particular Ka-Bar USMC 1217 has the traditional make. It weighs under one pound at 0.68 lbs, so it’s easy to carry and handle. The overall length of the knife is 11 ⅞”. The knife has a flat grind, 20-degree edge angle, and powdered metal/ 1095 carbon butt cap/ guard. Its HRC, or Rockwell hardness rating, is 56-58. This is a rating as an everyday use pocket knife. When steels get higher than 59 HRC, that’s a more premium level steel. The knife can be stashed away in the buttery soft leather sheath, which features Ka-Bar and USMC stamps. Buy Here

Read Next: Best Tactical Backpacks For The Range or Wilderness