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United States Navy "Mark V" Divers Knife

Updated: Nov 16, 2022

One of the most popular subjects of collecting vintage diving equipment is knives. While commercial diving knives were made in huge varieties, the United State Navy standard diving knife was the same throughout most of the 20th century.


When the US Navy standardized the Mark V diving helmet in 1916, they were using a friction-style knife popular with divers in the 19th and 20th centuries. The example above is a classic configuration used by divers throughout the world. It was in 1929 that the US Navy had a considerably different style of knife design required for its divers.

The new style knife was referred to officially as the Navy Standard Dive Knife. Many collectors refer to the style as the Mark V knife, in reference to the diving helmet the knife is used with. The example shown directly above was made by Morse Diving Equipment after WW2.