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M-7 Bayonet-Knife

The M-7 bayonet-knife is used as a bayonet on the M-16 series rifle and as a hand weapon, fighting knife. The M-7 entered service in 1964 when the M-16 was phased in as the U.S. military service rifle.

Soldier with M-16 rifle and fixed M-7 bayonet (in scabbard)
Soldier with M-16 rifle and fixed M-7 bayonet (in scabbard).

Today in WW II: 31 Oct 1940 End of Battle of Britain, Hitler's air war against London, other British cities, and the Royal Air Force [RAF].  More 
31 Oct 1941 Destroyer USS Reuben James [DD-245] on Lend-Lease convoy escort duty sunk by German submarine U-552 with the loss of 100 of her crew, the first US naval casualty in the yet undeclared war.
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Description of the M-7 Bayonet Knife

M-7 Bayonet-Knife

The M-7 blade and hilt are very similar to the M-4 bayonet with the Korean War era plastic grips for the M-1 Carbine except that the M-7 has a much larger muzzle ring. The M-7 has the same two-lever locking mechanism as the M-4, that connects to a lug on the M-16 barrel. The M-7 will fit the AR-15 as well as the M-16 family of rifles, including the M-4 Carbine. Other military firearms, such as combat shotguns, have been fitted with this bayonet.

M-7 bayonet markings

The M-7 1095 carbon steel blade is 6 3/4 inches long, with an overall length of 11.9 inches. Blade width is 7/8 inch and it weighs about 9.6 ounces. One edge is sharpened its full length while to opposite side of the blade has approximately 3 inches sharpened. There are no markings on the blade itself. The manufacturer's initials or name along with "US M7" will be found stamped under the crossguard (see photo, right). The non-slip grips are molded black plastic. The steel parts have a uniform dark grey/black parkerized finish.

The M-7 bayonet is NSN 1005-00-017-9701. The initial contrator was Bauer Ord Company. Colt (manufacturer of the M-16) and Ontario Knife Company made many of the M-7 bayonets for the military and continue to make and sell them commercially. Other manufacturers included Carl Eickhorn [for Colt], Columbus Milpar & Mfg. (MIL-PAR), Conetta Mfg., Frazier Mfg., General Cutlery (GEN CUT), and Imperial Knife. About 3 million M-7 bayonets were delivered.


Marine of Second Battalion, Fourth Marine Regiment holds his M16 rifle with M7 bayonet fixed as he searches through an NVA stronghold during Operation Saline II, Quang Tri Province, Vietnam, 12 March 1968
Marine of Second Battalion, Fourth Marine Regiment holds his M16 rifle with M7 bayonet fixed as he searches through an NVA stronghold during Operation Saline II, Quang Tri Province, Vietnam, 12 March 1968.

Technical Manual for the M-7 Bayonet

M-7 Bayonet, from TM 9-1005-237-23&P
M-7 Bayonet, from TM 9-1005-237-23&P.

Along with the M-6 and M-9 bayonets, the M-7 is covered by TM 9-1005-237-23&P with the long title, "ORGANIZATIONAL AND DIRECT SUPPORT MAINTENANCE MANUAL (INCLUDING REPAIR PARTS AND SPECIAL TOOLS LIST) FOR BAYONET-KNIFE, M6, WITH BAYONET-KNIFE SCABBARD, M10 (1095-00-014-0369), BAYONET-KNIFE, M7, WITH BAYONET-KNIFE SCABBARD, M10 (1095-00-017-9701) AND M9 MULTIPURPOSE BAYONET SYSTEM (1005-01-227-1739)". The manual appeared with various dates including January 1993 which supercedes 18 November 1986. The above illustration is from that TM.

Scabbard for the M-7 Bayonet

M8A1 Scabbard for M-4, M-5, M-6, and M-7 bayonet
M8A1 Scabbard for M-4, M-5, M-6, and M-7 bayonet.

During its initial service life the M-7 bayonet was used with the M8A1 scabbard, the same one used for all the post-WW II bayonets until it was replaced by the M10 scabbard which is now listed as the scabbard for the M-7 bayonet.

There are two variations of the M8 scabbard, both with an olive drab fiberglass body with steel throat. The early version, designated M8, has only a belt loop, no hook. The M8A1 retains the general look and can be slipped over a belt, but also has the M-1910 bent wire hook available. The scabbard is stamped "US M8" or "US M8A1" on the flat steel part along with manufacturer initials. This sheath is correct for all post-war US bayonets including the M-4, M-5, M-6, and M-7.

M10 Scabbard for M-6 and M-7 bayonet
M10 Scabbard for M-6 and M-7 bayonet.
Photo courtesy of Blades New & Old.

The "Scabbard, Bayonet Knife, M8A1" is assigned NSN 1095-00-508-0339. It has been replaced by the black "Bayonet-knife scabbard M10", NSN 1095-00-223-7164.

Where to buy the M7 Bayonet and Scabbard

The M7 bayonet and scabbard are available from militaria dealers or sources like eBay, as well as from other vendors of military items. Amazon.com lists several versions of the M7 bayonet, along with related books and manuals.

Huge numbers of the M8A1 scabbard were produced and surplused and are widely available from militaria dealers or sources like eBay as well as from other vendors of military items.

Find More Information on the Internet

There are many fine websites that have additional information on this topic, too many to list here and too many to keep up with as they come and go. Use this Google web search form to get an up to date report of what's out there.

For good results, try entering this: m7 bayonet. Then click the Search button.

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