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Need help with M6 Aerial bayonet/U>S> M8A1(WD) scabbard

Discussion in 'Non-Firearm Weapons' started by stonebuster, Jun 11, 2019.

  1. stonebuster

    stonebuster Member

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    My father-in-law left this bayonet and scabbard behind and I'm looking for some info from the experts here. Gunny's bayonet thread got me wondering about this. Is this a Vietnam era bayonet and does the scabbard match?
     

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  2. bannockburn

    bannockburn Member

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    stonebuster

    I'm no expert but the M6 bayonet was made for the M14 rifle and the M8A1 scabbard goes with it. It was made by Aerial Cutlery (among other manufacturers), sometime in the 1960s and could readily be considered a Vietnam War era bayonet.

    This is an M7 bayonet for the M16 rifle which I got from a military surplus dealer in the early 1970s. It uses the same M8A1 scabbard as the M6 bayonet.

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  3. CapnMac

    CapnMac Member

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    M6 should be the M14 bayonet (M1 is the WWII Garand bayonet; don't remember what the 2 was, the M3 was the Trench Knife; M4 is the Trecnh kifes as bayonet for the Carbine; M5 is the Garand bayonet that had a stud instead of a loop).

    M8 scabbard came out in very late 1945. The M8A1 came out after Korea an corrected some things found to be less than ideal with the M8.

    So, the M8A1 scabbard is entirely correct for a M6 bayonet.

    M14 was adopted circa 1958, after 13 years' development. Full deployment was not until about 1963.

    If you wanted a very interesting accessory for the bayonet, the M-56 entrenching tool carrier had a tab and a loop to carry the bayonet scabbard (finding the correct e-tool with both pick and shovel is getting tougher than in years past). It's middling easy to find the e-tool carrier in near mint condition, since its use was curtailed by the widespread issue of the M9 and M17 pro-masks , which were worn where the e-tool carriier had been designed to.
     
  4. kBob

    kBob Member

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    CapnMac,

    The carriers for the M17 and the M9 have straps that allow wearing the protective mask under the arm OR on the hip. While REMFs that did not typically carry an etool wore their mask bag on the right leg, us PBI wore it tucked under the left arm and still carried an etool We tried to insure that each fireteam had one of the pick axe and shovel types but most of us carried the more common AMES shovel only type. When that Pick Axe and Shovel type was all there was the etool was worn on the backpack and that set of eyelets and the strap positioned the bayonet so it could be reached over the shoulder and the belt freed up for things other than the etool or bayonet.

    BTW I found the under arm carry of the mask much easier to get to unless I was standing on some parade ground in training and even then a lot less gymnastics were involved in getting it out and on. When we had light duties under arms where we wore only a rolled pancho on the back of the pistol belt and no Butt Pack, spare canteen or etool, we reslung the gas mask carrier to the right hip, unless our assigned weapon in those duties was a hand gun, then the holster went there and the mask back under the arm. Another example of how units did things according to their mission was that while it seemed everyone else in Europe carried the bandage and burn packet pouch on the right shoulder loop of the LBE harness our unit carried on the left so as to not interfere with shouldering the rifle to fire or go to sling arms. When bayonets were issued or drawn on request we wore them over the side of the right buttock as the canteen was generally shifted to the center of the right side to make a convenient place to support a rifle at "one handed low Port" not in any manual but you would have seen it a lot in those days. Least you think this lade us lop sided with all that free space on the left there was plenty of additional crap to be carried on slings such as spare MG ammo, commo wire, field phones, night vision gear on ad infinitum that is unit equipment that has to get to the field some how. mu least favorite was when I had a squad leader that insisted that we carry a ".50 can" full of spare water for our squad on a cargo strap, I know there were only eight sharp corners on that thing but would have sworn when carrying it that it grew 16 more

    My unit in the early to mid 1970's used the Butt Packs and the etool cover went on the right side of that with a spare canteen without cup counter balanced on the left...until you drank it dry and it then did not provide much of a counter weight. While most units carried with the handle down our unit carried with the handle up and attached to the H harness with an elastic boot blouser....when in 1975 we started giving newbees Y type harnesses this became an issue. When the wood handled etool was replaced by the tri fold abortion units again put them as best suited to their particular pack and Load Bearing equipment situation.

    I loathed the trifold when it came in as in side by side tests it took twice as long to dig in with the new and improved shovel. It also did not make anywhere near as good a battle axe.

    -kBob
     
  5. NMPOPS

    NMPOPS Member

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    One small correction. The M-8 Scabbard came out in early 1944. My father landed on D-Day and he carried an M3 Trench knife in an M8 scabbard. Also I am pretty sure I have seen pictures of the M8A1 in use during WW2.
     
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