BLADE Magazine

The M7 Bayonet: From Combat To The Campsite

The M7 Bayonet Has Been Used By The United States Military For Almost 60 Years. The Dynamic, Multi-Purpose Tool Is Just As Useful Now As When It First Went Into Service.

When you first think of a bayonet your mind probably goes to the battlefields of the Revolutionary and Civil Wars. But no, bayonets aren’t some relic from a bygone era. While the days of bayonet charges are long long, the knives are still in use by the military today and have evolved into a multi-faceted tool.

The M7 Bayonet stands out due to its longevity. Built on the back of the M4 bayonet, which was issued toward the tail end of World War 2, the M7 is designed to be used with the M16 or the M4 carbine, although it can fit on numerous other rifles. 

The History Of The M7 Bayonet

The M7 was first introduced in 1964 during the Vietnam War. The knife was initially made by Bauer Ord Company, but numerous companies did eventually manufacture the M7. Today, the lone remaining maker of combat-deployed M7 bayonets is Ontario Knife, though the knife is still available from at least one other company (Smith & Wesson).

Despite being issued by the United States military, the M7 was also made in Canada, West Germany, Australia, and in several countries in Asia.

How Does The M7 Work?

The M7 connects to the M16 via a lug thanks to a dual-lever locking mechanism. This secures the blade to the barrel while keeping the muzzle unblocked. A release mechanism on the pommel of the knife allows it to detach from the firearm easily.

Ontario Knife Company M7 Bayonet

Ontario Knife Company M7 Bayonet

Ontario Knife Co. was one of many makers to manufacture the M7, and it is the last to make the military issue variety of the blade. There is also a commercial version as well, which will be reviewed here.

It starts with a 1080 carbon steel blade with a zinc phosphate finish married to a modified Kraton handle. The blade is 6.7 inches long, and the whole construction is just shy of a foot in length. It tips the scales at 1.15 pounds. It looks beefy and feels hefty in the hand, as you would expect from a such a knife.

The included molded plastic sheath is a pistol belt clip. The lightweight sheath allows for safe, easy transport of the knife. While this knife is designed for combat, it’s burly design allows for multiple different uses. This would be a an excellent all-rounder when camping.

MSRP: $114.95

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