In 1911, H. N. Platts, was able to draw on his extensive friendships and family connections in the cutlery world to start Western States Cutlery and Manufacturing of Boulder Colorado. At first only a jobbing business, by 1920 construction and machinery purchases were underway to begin manufacture of knives. Through name changes--to Western States Cutlery Co. in 1953, then Western Cutlery Co. in 1956--and moves first across town and later to Longmont Colorado, the company stayed under the leadership of the Platt family until 1984. In that year, the company was sold to Coleman, becoming Coleman-Western. Eventually purchased by Camillus in 1991, Western continued until Camillus expired in 2007.
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They aren't particularly rare. They were made with the Bolder stamping, the Longmount stamping and Western Coleman stamping although the Coleman weren't as nice. Some had wildlife etched blades. Maybe tomorrow I may have time to dig mine out for a picture. I've paid from $60 to around $100 for the ones I have. ___Dave
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The 932 was never a military knife. Civilian sales only. The earliest I have seen an ad for the 932 was 1968. It was advertised as the
"RANGER Saw & Knife Nothing else like it on the market".
Kit Model 932K.
The kit was a clear plastic box that had the knife, sheath, sharpening stone in its own leather pouch and a tube of lubricant.
I don't know if it came out before 1968 as a stand-alone knife & sheath, with the kit coming out in 1968, or if that was the first year the knife was produced. When I was researching old magazines at the University of Texas at Austin's Perry-Castenada library, I never made it to the late 1960s or newer magazines before I moved out of easy access to the library and quit researching.
If you put one alongside one of those Colonial or United G.R. Mich knives, they are almost identical except for the handle material.
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Thank you ZZ & Dave. Great replies even including the 1968 marketing slogan: "nothing else like it on the market". Neat !
Thanks for price range too so i have an idea of what to ask when time comes to sell.