M series bayonet
|M series bayonet|
An M1 Bayonet made by the American Fork & Hoe Co.
|Place of origin||United States|
|Used by||United States|
World War I
World War II
|Manufacturer||American Fork & Hoe
Pal Blade and Tool
Union Fork & Hoe
Wilde Drop Forge & Tool
|Produced||from 1905 onward|
The 'M' series of bayonets was initiated in 1905, and continues in use to the present. There have been several modifications to the original design, the greatest being with the introduction of the M1 subseries near the end of WWII.
The M1905 was made for the .30 caliber U.S. Rifle Model 1903. The M1905 bayonet blade is 16 inches (40.6 cm) long, and the handle is 4 inches (10.1 cm) long. The bayonet also fits the .30 caliber U.S. M1 Garand rifle (or simply, M1). In 1942, the same basic bayonet design (equipped with a plastic instead of a wood handle) was again produced and designated the M1942 bayonet.
The M1942 is an exact copy of the M1905 Bayonet, and was manufactured in sufficient numbers to keep up with wartime production of the .30 caliber M1, which it was intended to be used with. Again, the blade is 16 inches long with a 4 inch long handle. Interchangeability allowed the M1942 bayonet to be used on any M1903 rifle, while allowing the mounting of the earlier M1905 bayonet on the M1 Garand rifles.
- M1942 production (1942-1943)
|American Fork and Hoe||350,000||23%|
|Pal Blade and Tool||250,000||17%|
|Union Fork and Hoe||385,000||26%|
|Wilde Drop Forge and Tool||60,000||4%|
The M1 and M1905E1
The M1 Bayonet was designed to be used with the .30 caliber M1 Garand. The blade is 10 inches (25.4cm) long, and the handle is 4 inches (10.1cm) long. Before 1943, the M1 Garand and all variants of the M1903 Springfield rifle were using the M1905 and later M1942 bayonets. In 1943, the U.S. Army decided to shorten the bayonet design. Many of the M1905/M1942s as possible were recalled, had their blades cut down to 10 inches, and were reissued.
The shortened M1905 bayonets were re-designated as M1905E1. New-production 10-inch bayonets were designated as M1 bayonets.
The shortened bayonets functioned well in the European theater, where in the rare bayonet-actions of the time they were matched up against the 9¾ inch long blade of the German S84/98 III bayonet fitted on the Karabiner 98k rifle. However, in the Pacific theater, the much longer Japanese Type 30 sword bayonet on the already very long Arisaka rifle caused many American troops to retain the longer, unmodified M1905 bayonet.
The original M1905 scabbard had a wooden body with a rawhide cover and employed a wire belt-hanger which went over and around the supporting belt. The M1910 scabbard was covered in canvas with a leather tip. Wire cartridge-belt hooks replaced the belt-hanger. The M1910 scabbard was the primary scabbard used during the First World War. Earlier M1905 scabbards were modified by replacing the belt-hanger with a belt hook. A green-leather bodied M1917 scabbard (designed for the M1917 Enfield bayonet) was approved as a substitute for the M1905 bayonet scabbard.
A new scabbard, the M3, was developed early in the Second World War to replace these earlier scabbards. The M3 scabbard had a fiberglass body, with a metal throat, and was equipped with hooks which fixed to the cartridge-belt.
- Note: Variants of the M1903 rifle were produced during World War I and World War II by Springfield Armory, Remington Arms, Rock Island Arsenal, and Smith-Corona Typewriter.
- Canfield, Bruce N.; Bayonet Scabbards for U.S. M1903 Springfields; "American Rifleman;" September 2009; p.48