The bayonet Johnson developed for the Model 41 rifle is unlike any other used by the US military in recent years. It was designed to fulfill the requirements of the Army Ornance Board, who specified any rifle design submitted for military use must have provision for fitting a bayonet. Tests with the standard Model 1905 bayonet caused the Johnson rifle to malfuction as it impaired the barrel's recoil, so this lightweight one was developed. In essence this bayonet was an afterthought with little or no practical use. In the field the marines referred to these bayonet as 'tent pegs' due to their similarity to the GI peg.


Bayonet and Scabbard (Top view        0

The Johnson bayonet is produced from a single billet of steel that is forged into shape. It has no defined handle or grip as does the Model 1905 bayonet, just a flat extension with a flat spring clip riveted to it. Fastening mechanismThis clip to facilitate the removal of the bayonet from the rifle, disengaging it from the lug on the rifle's barrel.Bayonet on muzzle - detail photo A mounting ring with a 3/4 inch diameter hole is mounted on the top of the handle a third of the way along the total length of the bayonet. The blade has a triangular profile, with the fuller making a concave indentation on the blade's top face. The bayonet has an overall parkerized finish to it and do not bear any makers name or identification.

The bayonet is carried in a russet coloured sheath,which tapers to point at the bottom.Scabbard

Showing numbersSome sheaths carry a serial number, their meaning is not clear at this time and they are not believed to be related to Johnson Rifle serial numbers. 


The Johnson bayonet is not common but can be found at good Arms Fairs and shows. Bayonet in scabbardPrices are in the $200 to $300 range depending on condition of bayonet and sheath. The sheath is the scarcer part of the set.

Shown here is the Model 1941 Bayonet in its sheath. The bayonet is held in to the sheath by the small strap which is secured by a small brass rivet.

Overall length of the bayonet is 11 3/4 inches and the sheath is 13 3/4 inches and weight of the bayonet is 8 ounces.

Warning - Collectors should be aware of newly made reproduction bayonets and scabbards that are now on the open market.  these are made in India and are of a very high quality.  There are differences (fortunately) between them and the genuine article.

              Read this article specially written for this site by Walt Liss

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