Identifiers for a "Super Automatic"

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button_man
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Identifiers for a "Super Automatic"

Post by button_man »

Things seem a little slow here just now, so I'll toss out an inquiry, at the risk of discussing knives that probably seem unimportant.... the humble "Super Automatic". I was fortunate enough to pick up the knife depicted here a few months ago for low dough; it is in pristine mint condition, with the original box. I have not seen very many S.A. or "NATO Military" type OTFs that say "Korea" on the ricasso, and I wonder whether this indicates a specific time window of manufacture? I also wonder whether the box provides a similar clue; I'm not certain, but I believe the mangled English on the side dates fairly early during the production of these knives, and disappeared from the box later on. Are these hunches correct....?
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Tom19176
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Re: Identifiers for a "Super Automatic"

Post by Tom19176 »

The texture of the handles shows it is from the 1980s on. The boxes were the same but the most modern ones said K 108 at the bottom tab. Bell Metal Company in Korea made them, but it was some what rare to see the Korea added to the tang. I saw them in a NYC Import company in the 1990s called Ko American Import.
sammy the blade
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Re: Identifiers for a "Super Automatic"

Post by sammy the blade »

Hard to believe but I've seen people asking over $100 for them, don't know if they got it or not but people are paying up for them.
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JimBrown257
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Re: Identifiers for a "Super Automatic"

Post by JimBrown257 »

I always thought those were 80s knives. I've seen them in a few movies made in the 80s but nothing before that.
Mario
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Re: Identifiers for a "Super Automatic"

Post by Mario »

That’s a nice one you got there, button_man! I have a black one.
Tom19176
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Re: Identifiers for a "Super Automatic"

Post by Tom19176 »

They were around in the late 60s to 70s with a solid plastic handle not the same texture as the one pictured. They were sold in Europe then. Saw them in stores when I travelled with my parents and my friend had a few in the early 70s.....
button_man
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Re: Identifiers for a "Super Automatic"

Post by button_man »

Thanks everyone! The box is indeed marked "K - 108" on both end tabs. Tom, I had no idea that these existed before the 1980s..... it's especially interesting that you saw these first-hand in Europe way back then. Mario, I've been told that black is most common, then red and blue, and green is the hardest to find. I dunno if any other colors were produced....?
TazmanTom
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Re: Identifiers for a "Super Automatic"

Post by TazmanTom »

More weirdness.. On mine, the box is in English and the "instructions" inside are in German and French. Explain that one.
Mario
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Re: Identifiers for a "Super Automatic"

Post by Mario »

button_man wrote: Fri Jan 15, 2021 1:18 pm Thanks everyone! The box is indeed marked "K - 108" on both end tabs. Tom, I had no idea that these existed before the 1980s..... it's especially interesting that you saw these first-hand in Europe way back then. Mario, I've been told that black is most common, then red and blue, and green is the hardest to find. I dunno if any other colors were produced....?
Apparently there were white, purple and yellow ones produced. I’ve seen a collector with a white and a purple. Never seen the yellow. It’s apparently the rarest, but it supposedly does exist.
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Peiper
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Re: Identifiers for a "Super Automatic"

Post by Peiper »

That is a cool collectible, cheers!
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jim d,
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Re: Identifiers for a "Super Automatic"

Post by jim d, »

button_man,

No need to be concerned discussing knives "that probably seem unimportant". The title of this forum section is "switchblade knives". and you brought up a discussion about switchblades. There has been considerable interest and information in this thread which confirms the interest in the model. Unfortunately, I have nothing to contribute here as I don't know about the model but clearly others do and we have a good discussion going.

Jim
button_man
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Re: Identifiers for a "Super Automatic"

Post by button_man »

Mario ~ Wow, I had no idea! Purple and yellow....! Groovy baby!
button_man
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Re: Identifiers for a "Super Automatic"

Post by button_man »

TazmanTom wrote: Fri Jan 15, 2021 1:29 pm More weirdness.. On mine, the box is in English and the "instructions" inside are in German and French. Explain that one.
Tom19176 says that he saw them in Europe as far back as the late 1960s; and I believe this was before they hit the States.... so maybe the box is in English because Bell Metal was run by people who spoke English.... and the instructions were in German / French because those were the end users at that time. Just a guess....
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Bonzo
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Re: Identifiers for a "Super Automatic"

Post by Bonzo »

Mr. Button Man,

I have had a few of those in the black model. Never spent more than $5 on one. Was on a city bus in Cancun with a beer in one hand and playing with the super-automatic in the other. Try that trick in the states and see what happens...


Best regards,

Bonz
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"A little rebellion now & then is a good thing"
Thomas Jefferson
button_man
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Re: Identifiers for a "Super Automatic"

Post by button_man »

Bonz ~ I wouldn't ride a city bus in the U.S. without a flame-thrower and a bullet-proof vest
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