1980's US Air Force Survival Knife -
The US Air Force is always concerned about the possibility of a pilot being shut down while conducting a
mission. Pilots and rescue personnel train constantly to be able to deal with the situation.
The knife featured on this page is a pilot survival knife. As issued during the 1980's. The original
design dates back to the late 1950's and early 1960's. However, the shape and appearance of the knife
and the scabbard did not change significantly or at all.
The knife comes with a leather sheath. A small pocket is placed in the center. This is where the
sharpening stone is housed. A metal snap keeps the flap in the closed position.
This page is a recognition and identification guide for military fighting knives.
Multiple detailed photos of a specific sample are provided. Descriptions point out
clearly defined points that should be noted.
One of the most commonly asked questions is "How much is my fighting knife worth?".
A price guide is included here to address this question. The value of the knives is
reviewed over a period of several years. A trend can be observed. The present worth
of the edge weapons in the collector's market is illustrated.
This service is provided free of charge to the visitor/enthusiast courtesy of
a company dedicated to the preservation of military history and to providing quality
military antiques and collectibles to museums, institutions and the general public.
The pommel is of hexagonal shape. The sides are square. The name of the manufacturer and the
date of manufacture are stamped into the metal (Ontario , 2-80). Regardless of the age, most
of these type of knives were stamped in similar fashion. However, there are some examples
that do not bear any markings.
The back of the leather sheath has a black ink stamp with the following information:
Knife, hunting, sheath, survival
MIL - K - 86625
The handle is made of leather. It has several ridges which allow for a better grip. The cross guard
is of rectangular shape. Each end has a hole, which allows rope or wire to be secured to it. The blade
is bowie type with a clip point.
Single edge construction. The top portion of the blade has a saw back. Thie feature is very functional
in the woods where there might be a need to saw branches for building a shelter, making traps, etc. A
blood groove is also present.
This edge weapon is currently being reproduced.
It is becoming more difficult to be able to tell the fake ones from the real ones because
the quality of the reproductions is improving. The collector must become familiarized with
the construction style and materials employed in the manufacturing of this item.
Attention to the details is critical in order to be able to determine the authenticity of
If you have an interest is seeing other fighting knives, you can do so by going to our
Military Fighting Knives Price Guide
identification guide. Where we cover Army, Navy, Army Air Force, USMC and other organizations.