TL-29 Information overload....

The Camillus Cutlery Company was one of the oldest knife manufacturers in the United States with roots dating back to 1876. The company manufactured Camillus branded knives and was a prolific contractor for other knife brands up until its last days in 2007 when the company filed for bankruptcy.
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MT-Vessel
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TL-29 Information overload....

Postby MT-Vessel » Tue Oct 09, 2018 10:48 pm

I found this single line, block letters CAMILLUS over NEW YORK over USA , Tl-29 at an antique shop. For a couple of bucks i have had hours of thread searching fun.... now I wish to get confirmation of my findings. I suspect that I have made some errors. I usually do. ::facepalm::
Is this a 1960-1976 TL-29? Are the scales bakolite? It has TL-29 melted into the front scale. Does that make it military issue?
The number of scale, pivot and spring pins lead me to conclude it is in the middle of the Camillus production.
Any and all information welcome.
JV
The line drawing is from another thread. I don’t know who to credit... but thanks.
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Vit_213
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Re: TL-29 Information overload....

Postby Vit_213 » Tue Oct 09, 2018 11:21 pm

IMHO this is the 50s-60s

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Re: TL-29 Information overload....

Postby orvet » Wed Oct 10, 2018 12:42 am

TL-29 is the military designation, yes it is military issue.
The handles are Rogers Board, not bakelite.

Vit's dating is as good as any, imho.
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Re: TL-29 Information overload....

Postby AR Norby » Wed Oct 10, 2018 10:01 pm

I have a TL-29 that was issued to me new in 1974 while stationed in Germany. The stamp on the blade is the same. The only difference is the scales on mine are not stamped TL-29. I tend to think mine was made 1960-76 time period.
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Re: TL-29 Information overload....

Postby MT-Vessel » Wed Oct 10, 2018 11:02 pm

Sincerely, I thank you all for the information.
I now know that the scales are Rogers Board. :D The age... 1950s, 60s or as much as 1976. :( The TL-29 stamp makes it military, but AR Norby was issued a non-stamped version with the same number of pins and inset bail placement while serving in Germany in 1974.?!
Nailing down the details of an old folder is not unlike sweeping ants, as soon as you think you have everything in order, they all crawl away! ::facepalm::
Thanks again,
JV

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Re: TL-29 Information overload....

Postby Tsar Bomba » Thu Oct 11, 2018 12:37 am

Dating most Camilluses by the stamp alone is a fruitless pursuit. Camillus reused stamps, blades with old stamps, etc. throughout their history. You can get a better idea of the knife's age by noting the extra pin for the bail (the newer ~70s and later #27s and TL-29s used the handle pin on the barehead end to secure the bail as well - both civvie and mil-issued). The profile of the screwdriver/stripper blade dates it a little older than that, too, IIRC.

I believe Vit is about as accurate as we can get given the photos and the TL-29 handle stamping. Definitely no earlier than the '50s, my wartime and post-war TL-29s with the same handle stamping are all wood (ebony, I think). I think '50s-60s is a fine estimate on that knife.

This thread is the first I've heard of "Rogers Board" btw. I'm gonna have to do some reading about Rogers's laminate business now. :lol: Good find on the blueprint, too, that kind of stuff is always valued because of the added dimension it lends to the hobby. ::tu::
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Re: TL-29 Information overload....

Postby orvet » Thu Oct 11, 2018 1:35 am

Tom Williams told me about Roger's board. Incidentally it was not made by the same company that made Roger's bone.
It was a different company entirely and a different material.

Tony,
Somewhere here on AAPK I have posted a lot of blueprints of Camillus knives. I believe there are blueprints of a number TL-29s, probably in the TL-29
thread.

Tom sent me a bunch of Camillus blueprints, I think I have posted most of them here and Larry Vickery has posted them on Collectors of Camillus I believe.
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Re: TL-29 Information overload....

Postby Vit_213 » Thu Oct 11, 2018 11:09 am

Camillus TL-29 history :)
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Re: TL-29 Information overload....

Postby jerryd6818 » Thu Oct 11, 2018 11:59 am

Lets do some process of elimination.

Using the Camillus catalogs, we know that they used Rosewood handles until at least 1965.
1965 Catalog.png


And we know that at least by 1973 they had changed to synthetic handles.
Camillus 27 - 1973 Catalog.png


And we know they changed the bail swing pin location between 1976 and 1977.
Camillus 27 -- 1976 - 1977 Catalog Comparison.jpg


It's already been established that the knife is military issue and this information gets you within about ten years which is pretty doggone good for Camillus.
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Re: TL-29 Information overload....

Postby Vit_213 » Thu Oct 11, 2018 1:20 pm

jerryd6818 wrote:Using the Camillus catalogs, we know that they used Rosewood handles until at least 1965.

Remark: For the civilian version (#27) :)

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Re: TL-29 Information overload....

Postby orvet » Thu Oct 11, 2018 1:42 pm

I think the changes in the civilian knives are the probably driven by the change in the military knives. If you are making small changes to a pattern, something has to drive the change given the cost involved to retool.
I believe it is likely those changes were mandated by military contracts. I think the changes to the civilian electrician knife, #27, were driven by government contractual changes to the TL-29.
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Re: TL-29 Information overload....

Postby Vit_213 » Thu Oct 11, 2018 9:04 pm

Regarding pattern changes, I agree. But from the 50s to the 90s, different materials were used for #27 and TL-29 (MIL-K-13419).
By the way, there was another version - Camco 229, which was a civilian copy of TL-29. And in 1950 it already had a plastic handle :) .
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Re: TL-29 Information overload....

Postby Tsar Bomba » Thu Oct 11, 2018 11:19 pm

This is why AAPK is the best, bar none! ::nod:: ::tu:: ::tu:: ::tu::

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Re: TL-29 Information overload....

Postby TwoFlowersLuggage » Fri Oct 12, 2018 12:46 am

jerryd6818 wrote:Lets do some process of elimination.

Using the Camillus catalogs, we know that they used Rosewood handles until at least 1965.


I freely admit to knowing zero about the TL-29. So - does the above mean that if you see a Camillus TL-29 with Walnut (or any wood besides Rosewood) handles that the knife has been rehandled?
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Re: TL-29 Information overload....

Postby jerryd6818 » Fri Oct 12, 2018 1:06 am

TwoFlowersLuggage wrote:
jerryd6818 wrote:Lets do some process of elimination.

Using the Camillus catalogs, we know that they used Rosewood handles until at least 1965.


I freely admit to knowing zero about the TL-29. So - does the above mean that if you see a Camillus TL-29 with Walnut (or any wood besides Rosewood) handles that the knife has been rehandled?

::shrug::
Forged on the anvil of discipline.
The Few. The Proud.
Jerry D.

This country has become more about sub-groups than about it's unity as a nation.

"The #72 pattern has got to be pretty close to the perfect knife."
--T.J. Murphy 2012


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