iKC Member in Need Request #12 - Colonial Shur Snap Switch Blade

The Need

Similar to my first request, please take a look at this and the other postings I have similar to this one and share with me what you know about it. My goal is to use the information you provide to properly market and sell these knives to get a reasonable sale price while letting the buyer enjoy the full value of the piece.

Colonial Switch Blade – What I Think I Know

This is what I believe to be true so far about this knife:

  • It’s old; it’s broken; it’s retired from active service
  • Obverse tang stamp: “SHUR SNAP” large stylized font over smaller “COLONIAL” over “PROV. USA”
  • This is a 4” Fishtail pattern (need to confirm)
  • Knife 4” closed; 7.25” overall
  • Blade lock functions poorly, blade will not spring open when button is depressed, blade will also fold backwards 

What I want to Know

Based on the bullet info above and judging the best you can from the photos, I would like to know the following:

  • Estimate year of knife manufacture?
  • Is the blade carbon steel?
  • Should I have it restored?
  • Should I clean & polish it or leave it as is?
  • What, in your opinion, is the value of the knife? (Restored and “as is” please)
  • What, in your opinion, is a good sale price? (Restored and “as is” please)

Please feel free to ask me questions, request additional photos, or whatever in order to assist you in your evaluations. Please also feel free to correct my understandings with additional facts, as I want the best info I can get to support the sale.

Thank you for your comments and assistance – it is greatly appreciated!

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unique, I like it lars

Yea...as do I. Just wish it wasn't all broken down and in need of so much attention. I may have to link this one over there in the Switchblade group to get any info on it.

tim payne said:

unique, I like it lars

According the  "Guide of Antique American Switchblades, the vale of the Colonial Knife switchblades value between $250. dollars and $500.00  the knife you have in mint condition would be around $250.00

not so mint? I'd have to see to determine a value- However,  from my experience attending the Blade Show, there are folks out there that will tell its not worth anything, right after they say that, they tend to make a offer to take it off your hands for next to nothing, So, watch out for those that tell you your Colonial Knife switchblade isn't worth anything- I do have an authorized repair-dealer- his name is Bill Deshivs Cutlery, 10616 W. Poplar Ave, Collierville, TN 38017, Phone 901-484-6188, he's the best in the business-


Thank you so much for the info.  Bill is also a member here Lars. http://iknifecollector.com/profile/BillDeShivs

He is truly the person I go to if in doubt or question on a switchblade of any kind

Lars-A little info-

 The buttons on the rest of the Colonial Shur Snap knives help to tell us at what stage of production they were made; early, middle or late. I like to refer to these time differences as generations, and there are four total. Those knives with large brass buttons are the oldest. I call them first generation and they were made in the late 1940’s and early 50’s. A large button other than brass would be second generation for the early 1950s. Small rounded buttons are third generation and were made in the late 1950’s. For the record, the handles on these were NOT made of celluloid as many collectors think. I wanted to be sure so I did the fire test on several handles. Celluloid is extremely flammable and will ignite immediately upon contact with flame, while plastic will smoke. Also, the odors are very different. The Colonial Handles are some sort of plastic, not celluloid. Interesting, all of the Colonial switchblades have the brand name over “Colonial” over “PROV USA” stamped on the front tang, but on most of the fishtails, jacks and Snappys all that can be seen or the bottom stamp is “USA”. During the manufacturing process groves must be cut into the tang of the blade for locking purposes and most the time these grooves must be cut right through the “PROV”, usually obliterating it, though sometimes part of it is still visible.

Printed by permission of Mark Erickson, author of “Antique American Switchblade, Identification Value”

Just for an FYI, I recently saw an excellent condition version of your knife sell for $125.00 on Sharper Deals-Your call on whether to have Bill De Shivs repair or not -Worth a call to get his valued opinion-- Here is a pic of the one I saw sell for $125.00


Lars-BTW, in it's current condition, not worth much except as a parts knife-- Maybe worth a restore if not too expensive- Bill can advise you better on your decision.

Antique American Switchblades by Mark Erickson, Identification & value Guide is well regarded and I have attached a couple of pages from his guide for your perusal.,  of course in less than mint condition, the value will drop- we do have an authorized repair shop, if your interested I'll provide the address and phone number

call me with questions


Best regards

Steve Paolantonio

Colonial Knife

call me at toll free 866-421-6500


Steve Paolantonio

colonial knife

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