Original Canadian WWI Ross Rifle Bayonet Converted to Fighting Knife with Scabbard
Original Item: Only One Available. The Ross rifle is a straight-pull bolt action .303 inch-calibre rifle that was produced in Canada from 1903 until 1918. The Ross Mk.II (or "model 1905") rifle was highly successful in target shooting before World War I, but the close chamber tolerances, lack of primary extraction and overall length made the Mk.III (or "1910") Ross rifle unsuitable for the conditions of trench warfare, exacerbated by the often poor quality ammunition issued. By 1916, the rifle had been withdrawn from front line service, but continued to be used by many snipers of the Canadian Expeditionary Force until the end of the war due to its exceptional accuracy.
Here we have an original bayonet, which was re-worked during or post war to serve as a very sturdy fighting knife. Ross Rifle bayonets were often arsenal reworked to have a pointier blade, as the original profile was closer to a machete than a knife. However this example was modified further, with the blade shortened to 7 1/2 inches and given the very characteristic "clip point" style of a bowie knife. It has has the crossguard reduced , and the grip itself ground down a bit to make it more comfortable. It also has twisted rope or twine around the pommel, which is secured with glue or resin, making the hilt much more effective.
Unfortunately this has also made the date markings impossible to see. We believe this started life as possibly the Mk.II design of the Ross Rifle bayonet, but unfortunately with the rope in the way there is no way we can be sure. There are still some additional proof and acceptance marks stamped into the wood and steel of the handle.
The side of the pommel is still marked faintly with the manufacturer information:
ROSS RIFLE Co.
The blade is still mostly bright, with some light staining and peppering in places. It is still relatively sharp, and would have been a formidable weapon with such a heavy and solid blade.
The scabbard for this modified bayonet is also in very good condition. The scabbards leather body is marked MK II on the back, along with a Canadian "Broad Arrow in C" marking on the frog. The scabbard is complete with almost all stitching intact, and the expected light wear to the leather from being over 100 years old.
Unlike most of the Ross Rifle bayonets seen on the market, this example does not have ANY U.S. Surcharges we can see, so it was not one of the 20,000 sent to the U.S. for training purposes in 1917.
An very interesting fighting knife conversion of a rare bayonet. Ready to add to your collection!
Blade Length: 7 1/2"
Blade Style: Single Edge Hollow Ground with Clip Point
Overall length: 12“
Crossguard: 2 1/4”
Scabbard Length: 8" with Leather Frog
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