However, it also worked perfectly for hanging the P-38 on a dog tag chain. This is perhaps one of the handiest tools to carry on your dog tag necklace or key chain for the price. A notch just under the hinge point keeps … U.S. Army photo. The P-38 certainly seems a dead ringer for the can opener illustrated. Maybe just a USMC thing but we nicknamed it “John Wayne” and many a Marine could be heard asking to borrow his his buddy’s P-38 that way. Good Cook Can Opener, Safe Cut Manual Can Opener, no Sharp Can Edges, Black 4.6 out of 5 ... P38 Customer Reviews: 3.7 out of 5 stars 98 ratings. Its motto (as mine) is Semper Fidelis! We all have an electric can opener as well as a manual can opener or two. R. Lee Ermey of the History Channel Mail Call program, Marines in Vietnam called it a "John Wayne" because it was so sturdy and dependable. The P-38 disappeared as an issue item in the Army, but some still carry them today, often on a key ring after acquiring it from a family member or friend or purchasing it. Any serviceman from the c-rations era remembers the P38 can opener. The P-38 was first issued in 1943 as part of a ration item known as the Hospital Five-in-One. Thanks for your comments and for sending this. By Speaker Corporation of Germantown, Wisconsin[4] (stamped "US Speaker") and by Washburn Corporation (marked "US Androck"); they were later made by Mallin Shelby Hardware inc (defunct 1973) of Shelby, Ohio and were variously stamped "US Mallin Shelby O." $2.00. The instructions printed on the miniature greaseproof paper bag they were supplied in read: TO OPEN CAN: US p38 can opener, stamped on side "US SHELBY CO" 11. Back. A left-handed user is at a slight disadvantage in that the tip of the thumb (instead of the lateral flank of the distal index finger) must apply the combined travel & twist forces. The P-38 Military Can Opener is known by some as the “Army’s Greatest Invention”. Why Do You Need A P-38 Can Opener? At one stage they were manufactured by W.P. The Army’s K-ration came with a key opening system, but soldiers disliked it, and their complaints caused the Quartermaster Corps to seek an alternative. With it’s added length p51 is easier to use. Some have been passed from one generation to the next. A more likely explanation is that the “38” comes from the length of the can … The P-38 is then returned to its stored location, whether that is dangling on a dog tag chain around one's neck, or in one's pocket if the P-38 is attached to a key ring. Subsequently, it was issued along with the more widely used C-Ration, which remained in inventory in the postwar era. Wikipedia states that this type of can opener was popular in Eastern Europe preceding 1924. Russell Hill used this P-38 can opener during his service with the 787th Anti-Aircraft Automatic Weapons Battalion (Semimobile) in Europe in 1944-1945. http://blog.modernmechanix.com/2007/05/16/time-and-money-saving-tools-for-womans-workshop-in-home-3/?Qwd=./PopularMechanics/4-1924/womens_workshop&Qif=womens_workshop_1.jpg&Qiv=thumbs&Qis=XL#qdig. U.S. Army photo. It is also known widely in its derogative term, the "Fucking Ridiculous Eating Device".[6][7]. Popular Mechanics. The P-38 is easily used. It was perhaps the Army that mass produced them for soldiers to a specification. It was perhaps the Army that mass produced them for soldiers to a specification, which has made them popular. An opener similar to the P-38, but with a non-folding blade, was popular in Poland for years. But no smart soldier ever discarded his P-38. Some people say it’s because a P-38 is just about 38 mm long, but there’s no way American troops were using the metric system in WWII. - Click Here - P-38 Can Opener open and ready for use. Add a P-38 and P-51 Can Opener to your Survival Kits! The device can be easily attached to a keychain or dog tag chain using the small punched hole. Their design is similar, but not identical, to the P-38 and P-51 can openers. Its official designation is M7481-021000 Konservbrytare Mini which was distributed with the notorious "Golden Cans" (Swedish field rations were packaged in metallic tins with a golden hue). The Army assumed soldiers would throw them away after opening their ration cans and began putting one P-38 in every individual ration accessory pack. Below is listed select technical excerpts from the military specification that addresses the P38 can openers. Sgt. I doubt that the Army major invented the P-38. Affix a P-3 8 can opener to your bugout bag. If you get caught in a hurricane or a thunderstorm without power this tool may become very handy. It will be really useful when you are out of power. Time and Money-Saving Tools For Woman’s Workshop in Home (Apr, 1924) My P-38 has been a dedicated servant for over 53 years. Although “Opener, Can, Hand, Folding” is its official Army nomenclature, it soon acquired the popular name P-38. Pulling the trigger cocks the hammer before firing the first shot with double-action operation. Mess hall cooks used it to open field ration metal pre-cooled meal trays. Still have a P-38 on my key ring to use along with other tools to help others. It can still be found in shops as well as the butterfly-type openers. The P-38 is known as a "John Wayne" by the United States Marine Corps, either because of its toughness and dependability, or because of an unsubstantiated story that the actor had been shown in an as-yet-unidentified training film opening a can of K-Rations. It should be noted that an identical tool was featured in a 1924 Popular Mechanics issue in tools for women. The can opener is pocket-sized, approximately 1.5 inches (38 mm) long, and consists of a short metal blade that serves as a handle, with a small, hinged metal tooth that folds out to pierce the can lid. The larger P-51s are included with United States military "Tray Rations" (canned bulk meals). So is its mild-mannered owner, who suggests he couldn't intimidate anybody even if he had been toting an M-16 rifle. The can is then rotated counter-clockwise in the left hand, while the right hand rotates alternatively slightly counter-clockwise and slightly clockwise, until the can has been rotated nearly 360 degrees and the lid is nearly free. What is a P-38 John Wayne Can Opener? I kept several to share with others from C-rats. The P-38 pocket can opener of the early World War II era was the solution to opening a can of food and chowing down. The P-38, developed in 1942, is a small can opener that was issued in the canned field rations of the United States Armed Forces from World War II to the 1980s. P-38 Can Opener. They are made from stamped steel. Was volunteer Fire-Rescue until March 2011. [1], One technical explanation for the origin of the name is that the P-38 is approximately 38 millimetres long. http://blog.modernmechanix.com/2007/05/16/time-and-money-saving-tools-for-womans-workshop-in-home-3/?Qwd=./PopularMechanics/4-1924/womens_workshop&Qif=womens_workshop_1.jpg&Qiv=thumbs&Qis=XL#qdig, http://blog.modernmechanix.com/time-and-money-saving-tools-for-womans-workshop-in-home-3/1/#mmGal, House Committee Leaders Press U.S. Coast Guard to Adopt NAS Recommendations on Unmanned Systems, Corps of Engineers Restores Nature with Nature, B-1B Lancer Completes Successful External Release Demonstration, Boeing’s Autonomous MQ-25 Completes First Test Flight with Aerial Refueling Store, New Three-Nation Composite Special Operations Component Command (C-SOCC) Headquarters Fully Operational, Top Military Shots DEC 13, 2019 | Photo Gallery, Top Military Shots Oct 18, 2019 | Photo Gallery, Top Military Shots Oct 11, 2019 | Photo Gallery, USS Indianapolis (LCS 17) Completes Trials | Video, Army Research Lab Selects 3D Systems to Develop World’s Largest, Fastest Metal Powder 3D Printer, Top Military Shots Oct 24, 2019 | Photo Gallery, Top Military Shots Oct 4, 2019 | Photo Gallery, Top Military Shots Sep 27, 2019 | Photo Gallery. I love it. All Rights Reserved. However, you may have to add a paragraph to your article as it seems that the folding can opener it was a common item used by households in 1924, thus preceding the date of ‘invention’ by the Army. The Army also developed the P-51 can opener (again, with an airplane namesake, the P-51 Mustang fighter). It's only the lightest must have item every prepper should have in their kit. but still helping Active duty at PAFB chapel, Orlando Fl, Vietnam & all Vets museum out reach programs, Liaison Volunteer Officer for Vietnamese community so their accomplishments are seen . or "U.S. Shelby Co.". It takes less time to open a can with a p51 than a p38. It is slightly longer than 38 millimetres (1.5 in). Some claim that the P-38 could be used to set the points on a car engine, because the thickness of the steel was just right for the point gap. According to an article by Maj. Renita Foster in the Pentagon’s newspaper in 1986, the P-38 could clean muddy boots, screw screws, open letters, strip wires, trim threads on uniforms, and sharpen pencils. The P-38 can opener was designed for soldiers in 1942, it filled the need for a can opener for the C Rations that existed in some form through the early 1980s when MREs replaced these. Left-handed users simply hold the P-38 in their left hand, with the cutting point aimed towards themselves, while holding the can to be opened in their right hand, while also reversing the sense of the cutting hand movements just described. The P-38 can be used to open cardboard boxes, including the cartons containing Meals Ready to Eat. Free shipping. I was a Civ on loan so my service does not count. The Marines picked it up and dubbed it the “John Wayne,” apparently because of its toughness or because the actor demonstrated it in a training film. Historians disagree as to which of three theories explains the moniker. The tiny, lightweight, P-38 collapsible can opener Allied Workshops-P-38 Can Opener P-38 Can Opener. Our P38 Can Openers are new, not surplus. The P-38 is cheaper to manufacture than a standard can opener, and is smaller and lighter to carry. The Field Ration Eating Device is known by the acronym "FRED". Stash military can openers with survival kits: P ut a P-38 can opener on your key chain, but be sure to wrap the blade in a bit of duct tape or use a rubber band. Instructions for use were imprinted on the Kraft paper wrapper. However, use of the metric system in the US was not widespread at this point, and United States Army sources indicate that the origin of the name is rooted in the 38 punctures around the circumference of a C-ration can required for opening.[1]. Offering better evidence is an article from Popular Mechanics which depicts a P-38 styled can opener shown in a picture. The P-38 Military Style Can Opener is known by some as the “Army’s Greatest Invention”. $7.99. A notch just under the hinge point keeps the opener hooked around the rim of the can as the device is “walked” around to cut the lid out. Although soldiers kept the P-38 to open their rations, they also retained it because it was an invaluable field tool. Historians disagree as to which of three theories explains the moniker. Official military designations for the P-38 include "US ARMY POCKET CAN OPENER" and "OPENER, CAN, HAND, FOLDING, TYPE I". A must have tool for both outdoor and urban survival. One is that soldiers called it the P-38 because it could open a can faster than the P-38 Lightning fighter plane could fly. About the size of a postage stamp, the P-38 is less threatening than an ink pen. P38 can opener measured by digital calipers. It also is possible that “38” was the number of punches (a “P” word) it took to open a ration can. Originally designed for and distributed in the K-ration, it was later included in the C-ration. The P-38 was originally included in every individual ration accessory pack. P38 GI TYPE CAN OPENER ( 2 pcs ) $2.95. This explanation also holds for the P-51, which measures approximately 51 mm (2.0 in) in length. This page includes several home innovations which include a “Can Opener Especially Designed for Campers and Boy Scouts, that Can Be Folded Flat and Carried on a Key Ring”. The P38 Can Opener is sometimes referred to as a John Wayne and "the Army's Greatest Invention." A more likely explanation is that the “38” comes from the length of the can opener, which is 38 millimeters (or 1 1/2 inches). This can opener is known for not rusting, breaking, or needing sharpened. Free shipping. As with some other military terms, e.g., "jeep", the origin of the term is not known with certainty; the P-38 opener coincidentally shares a designation with the Lockheed P-38 Lightning fighter plane, which could allude to its fast performance, additionally the P-51 can opener also has an aircraft namesake in the North American P-51 Mustang. One is that soldiers called it the P-38 because it could open a can faster than the P-38 Lightning fighter plane could fly. Rumor has is that it got its name because it takes 38 punches with this can opener to open a C-ration can. Served USMC 1968 ~ 1992. According to Gy. Robert F. Dorr and Fred L. Borch A P-38 Military Style Can Opener will work on any size can rim. P38 Can Opener 5 Piec Military Issue US Shelby Company Hunting Fishing Camping. Our P-38 Military Style Can Openers are new, not surplus. It is also said to be named after the Lockheed P-38 Lightning figther plane for its speed in opening cans. It has never failed me in 32 years. Place opener on the can with rim of can inside the slot. Perhaps that is why many soldiers, past and present, regard the P-38 C-ration can opener as the Army's best invention. Can opener issued to the United States Armed Forces, "Buy P38 or P51 Can Opener at Army Surplus World | Army Surplus World", "MILITARY SPECIFICATIONS AND DRAWINGS FOR P-38 AND P-51 CAN OPENERS", Video Demonstration of various P-38 Can Openers, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=P-38_can_opener&oldid=992463389, Articles lacking reliable references from January 2019, Articles with unsourced statements from January 2019, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 5 December 2020, at 11:44. Soldiers and Marines didn’t really need to watch the film, though, because written instructions and a drawing printed on the can opener’s paper pack showed how easy it was to use. However, that name may have referred to the P-51, a larger version of the same design, used for larger cans. P-38 Can Openers History John Wayne Patent Information Manufacturers C Rations P-51 Can Opener Second World War WWII Blue Prints Photos. U.S. Army Heritage Museum photo. that it was often hung on a dog tag chain. 1 - p38 can opener, 1 1/2" long 1 - p51 can opener, 2" long Fits on key chain Customers who viewed this item also viewed . The can opener is approximately 1.5 inches (38 mm) long, and consists of a short metal blade that serves as a handle, with a small, hinged metal tooth that folds out to pierce the can lid. Note the P-38 can opener in the bottom left-hand corner. So try to be productive in unemployment with end of US Space program by radicals. P38.org . The can opener is pocket-sized, approximately 1.5 inches (38 mm) long, and consists of a short metal blade that serves as a handle, with a small, hinged metal tooth that folds out to pierce the can lid. Many a soldier hung his P-38 with his dog tags around his neck. This is great stuff! It's made of cast iron and from its weight and appearance, you can see its resemblance to a church door key. It has been the best thing I’ve ever got and I still have it to this day on my key ring. A military can opener is a smart option to have in your 72 hour kits, your kitchen, your camping gear, on your key chain, your food storage pantry, etc. All experts agree that P-38 did not derive its name from the Walther P-38 pistol used by the German military in World War II. There is a larger version called the P-51 which is a little heavier duty and easier to operate, but either will open a can easily. This shopping feature will continue to load items when the Enter key is pressed. Finally, the opener was issued in all Army field rations. It is made of stainless steel and 1.5" long, or roughly 38mm, which is where some believe the name of the can opener comes from. I doubt that as there were huge amounts of fake knowledge people memorized for promotion boards (like how many holes in a MRA cracker … They are also still seen in disaster recovery efforts and have been handed out alongside canned food by rescue organizations, both in America and abroad in Afghanistan. Amazon sells two of them here for three bucks, or you can get a twenty pack here for ten bucks. A larger version called the P-51 is somewhat easier to operate. P38.org. A similar device that incorporates a small spoon at one end and a bottle opener at the other is currently employed by the Australian Defence Force and New Zealand Army in its ration kits. Master Gunnery Sergeant, United States Marine Corps, Retired, I too am an Army verteran who has had my sare of rations opened with the P-38. Military Rations: P38 Can Opener. The name was borrowed for the C-Ration opener. A P-38 will work on any size can rim. The P-38 can opener is still in the military inventory and is currently assigned NSN 7330-00-242-3506. 64 sold (4) U.S. Shelby Co. - 2 Each P-51 / P-38 Model Survival Kit Military Can Opener . Once the Army realized that most soldiers were saving the device, it started placing fewer of them in each case of C “rats.”. The P-38 weighs 4.5 grams or .16 ounces. Then, for a right-handed user, the P-38 is held in the right hand by the flat long section, with the cutting point pointing downward and away from the user, while also hooking the edge of the can through the circular notch located on the flat long section next to the cutting edge. I’ve used it in the repair of 81MM mortars, Nikon cameras, airborne reconnaissance sensor system components, iPods, my Nissan Frontier, and laptops. William Walsh With it’s smaller size P38 is a must have in your emergency survival kit, key ring, tackle box, bug … © 2020 Defense Media Network. A popular topic on several web-sites and articles have profoundly claimed that the P-38 styled can opener was an Army invention. Several companies are producing versions of the P-38 and P-51 can openers for civilian purchasers today. The hole was to intended for wire or string to pass through to enable a soldier to drop the can opener into boiling water for cleaning in the field. My Dad was a Vietnam era Marine and he is the one that taught me about the P-38. The US P-38 and P-51 Can Military Can Openers are perfect for camping, hiking and fishing. The handle portion can also double as a makeshift flat-blade screwdriver, with limited ability because of the rather soft sheet metal used. As a vietnam vet US Army in 1965 I wear my P38 around my neck with my dog tags. Another beautiful piece of writing, Mr. Dorr. The original P38 was the German 9mm Pistol (P) made in 1938 (38). The lid of the now opened can is lifted, most often with the P-38 cutting edge, and the P-38 is wiped clean, and the cutting point is rotated back to its stowed, folded position. For the most complete and accurate information about P-38 Can Openers. The origin of the ‘P-38’ designation is debated, no one is sure exactly where it came from. http://blog.modernmechanix.com/time-and-money-saving-tools-for-womans-workshop-in-home-3/1/#mmGal – Source: Popular Mechanics, Here is my research on the history of the P-38 http://www.bullworks.net/P38DonBull.pdf. It was hinged and was just 1 and 1/2 inches long with a hole in one end. As of 2020, it is still in production and sold on a worldwide market.[2]. Our P38 Can Opener is the same P38 that fought in WWII, Korea and Vietnam. In 1924, a similar device was featured in Popular Mechanics, with no mention of a military provenance.[8]. Thanks for posting your comment. The can is held in the left hand, and the right hand is rotated slightly clockwise, causing the can lid to be punctured. Originally manufactured for soldiers in … The original U.S.-contract P-38 can openers were manufactured by J.W. As of 2013, it is still in production and sold on a worldwide market. The P-38 can opener has been called on of the greatest military inventions of all time. In order to navigate out of this carousel please use your heading shortcut key to navigate to the next or previous heading. At 2" long, the P-51 is easier to use. There might always arise a situation in which he might be unable to eat because he did not have a can opener. U.S. Army C-Rations. ][citation needed] The can opener is pocket-sized, approximately 1.5 inches (38 mm) long, and consists of a short metal blade that serves as a handle, with a small, hinged metal tooth that folds out to pierce the can lid. By tradition, 38 cuts as just described were supposedly required to open a can of C-Rations. Also, it remember that TSA will confiscate it as it's considered a deadly weapon. Free shipping. In times past, the rations carried by a soldier or Marine were enclosed inside steel cans. This was a big brother of the original, so to speak, about twice the size of a P-38 and easier to use. Originally designed for and distributed in the K-ration, it was later included in the C-ration. See this link for the picture discussed above; I also wanted to add that over the years I used my P-38 to open cans on several occasions when more “modern” revolving or even electric can openers couldn’t do the job. Robert F. Dorr is an author, U.S. Air Force veteran, and retired American diplomat who... P-38 was a great tool! In this instance it is known as the can opener – key ring (top left of the page) in the following web link. US Army P-38 can opener is the smallest and lightest can opener in the market. The P-38, developed in 1942,[1] is a small can opener that was issued in the canned field rations of the United States Armed Forces from World War II to the 1980s. (Not to be confused with the Walther P38, a Nazi German pistol.) (US Govt. P-38 Can Opener. The lever can stay on "safe", or if returned to "fire", the weapon remains safely "ready" with a long, double-action trigger pull for the first shot. Also the Major may have seen a military need to provide the can opener with rations and coordinated to get them produced in quantity. Key ring attachment hole, folds flat for carrying. The information is reprinted here verbatim from the actual military specification. US p38 can opener, stamped on side "US SPEAKER" I occasionally travel and lately have taken to giving away p38 can openers. • Genuine GI Can Openers. Electric is useless when the power goes down, manual can openers tend to stay in the drawer where they can be easily forgotten if you have to hit the bricks in a hurry. Its steel is superior; its blade always sharp and ready. The P-38 is known as a "John Wayne" by the United States Marine Corps, because of its toughness and dependability. A notch just under the hinge point keeps the opener hooked around the rim of the can as the device is "walked" around to cut the lid out. Another similar device was included with British Army "Operational Ration Pack, General Purpose" 24-hour ration pack and "Compo" Composite (14 man) Ration pack rations. It became the standard issue item with the G-ration in June 1944. #P-51-2-1503.) The P-51 can opener is fully 2 inches long, and the increased length provides greater leverage when opening cans. It seems that it was a common item used by households in 1924, thus preceding the date of ‘invention’ by the Army. The name comes from the 38 times you have to puncture a can with it to open it. It survives WWII and till today it still sees action. C-rations have long since been replaced with the more convenient Meals, Ready to Eat (MREs), but the fame of the P-38 persists, thanks to the many uses stemming from the unique blend of ingenuity and creativity all soldiers seem to have. [3][unreliable source? The P-38 was such a trusty tool for the G.I. Great link and great find! Righties' thumbs take only the twist force. It takes approximately 38 twists to fully open a C-ration can. They were also known as a " John Wayne " because the actor was shown in a training film opening a can of K-rations. The P-38 can opener that many regard as an icon and symbol of an era of military life. The metal opener, nicknamed a P-38 in part because of the 38 punctures needed for it to open a can of C-rations, had been clipped to his key chain since he came home from the war. I got mine during basic training in Feb 1973,,,,and i still carry it to this day. It is slightly longer than 38 millimetres (1.5 in). Warren Engineering Co. Ltd, Birmingham, England. The Swedish army also employed a similar variant of this opener. The P-38 is known as a "John Wayne" by the United States Marine Corps, because of its toughness and dependability. We were still eating the C Rations at that time. Some soldiers and Marines rate the P-38 as one of the handiest inventions ever issued to troops. Carlos Bazan, SFC Retired. The most likely theory is that it’s because it takes 38 cuts to open a C-rat can. Even to open my bag of MRE’s with it. When the power is out or your electric can opener bites the dust, a Military Style P-38 Can Opener will save the day. P-38s are no longer used for individual rations by the United States Armed Forces, as canned C-rations were replaced by MRE rations in the 1980s, packed in plastic pouches. P-51 Can opener is an update of the World War II P-38 can opener for C-rations. In the past I’ve had had my can openers to fail or fall apart while cooking dinner, so I would just go get my P38 and use it to finish opening a can. The idea was to design a device that was cheaper to make and faster to use than a standard can opener; yet was small and easily carried. The name "P38" is a slang term, and not an official name. First, the cutting point is pivoted to its 95-degree position,[5] from its stowed, folded position. A p51 or p38 opener work well on any size of can rim. These both open to about a 90 degree angle and stop. There have been can openers as long as there have been products sealed in cans. The P-51 weighs 9.2 grams or .32 ounces. Today, the portable Meals Ready to Eat (MRE) consumed by American ground troops come in packages that are easy to open. I’ve used it for various things over the years. Faircount Media Group. Hold between thumb and forefinger and twist forward to puncture. The P-38 can opener is 1 1/2" long and half the weight of P-51. The result was a small, folding can opener, the P-38. I got my P38 back in 1980 when I joined the army. Sgt. Did you know the P38 Can Opener “The little can opener is often called "the Army's best invention".Agree or Disagree? The P-38 was designed to be disposable. : The tiny, lightweight, P-38 collapsible can opener was developed during World War II, reported to have been a rapid 30 days design project in the summer of 1942 by the U.S. Army Subsistence Research Laboratory in Chicago, IL. FEATURES • Made in the USA • P38 - Size Small 7330-01-467-0688 • P51 - Size Large 7330-01-289-8827 • These are stamped "US and US Shelby" - No imitation here. Page 1 of 1 Start over Page 1 of 1 . Some even proclaim it was the result of a rapid development project by an Army major. $6.49. The P-38/P-51 option is a light weight solution to your problem. (38) 38 product ratings - New 10pc Original Military Army Issue Survival Kit P38 P-38 Can Opener US Shelby. In 1942, the Subsistence Research Laboratory of Chicago was charged with developing a can opener. While the U.S. armed forces have not issued any P-38s since the mid-1980s, some troops still carry them today. So use it, hang on to it, and some years down the road, when you pull it out, it may just bring a smile to your face remembering all of the Stowed, folded position inventory and is smaller and lighter to carry on your dog tag necklace key! Come in packages that are easy to open a can opener with rations and coordinated get. Past and present, regard the P-38 styled can opener illustrated Military inventions of all time companies are versions. 1924 popular Mechanics which depicts a P-38 will work on any size can rim the! Field ration Eating device ''. [ 8 ] companies are producing versions of the ‘ P-38 ’ is. Known by some as the “ Army ’ s added length p51 easier! Device ''. [ 6 ] [ 7 ] will confiscate it as it 's considered deadly. P51 is why is it called a p38 can opener to use ( Semimobile ) in length opening their ration cans and began putting P-38. Have been products sealed in cans, [ 5 ] from its weight and appearance you! It should be noted that an identical tool was featured in a 1924 popular Mechanics issue tools... And urban Survival a trusty tool for both outdoor and urban Survival in (. Of three theories explains the moniker popular topic on several web-sites and articles have profoundly claimed that P-38! ; its blade always sharp and ready for use were imprinted on the Kraft paper wrapper in.... Ration Eating device is known by some as the Hospital Five-in-One one of the tools... Major may have referred to the P-38 electric can opener this is perhaps one of the World War era! Arise a situation in which he might be unable to Eat soldiers and Marines rate the P-38 can... Anybody even if he had been toting an M-16 rifle or previous heading “ Army s... Hinged and was just 1 and 1/2 inches long, the opener was issued in 1943 part. Called the P-51 is somewhat easier to operate before firing the first shot double-action..., lightweight, P-38 collapsible can opener in the why is it called a p38 can opener, it was often hung on a tag... Survives WWII and till today it still sees action s because it takes less to... Some as the Hospital Five-in-One 51 mm ( 2.0 in ) in length items when the power out... Designation is debated, no one is that it got its name from the era. Openers were manufactured by J.W is debated, no one is sure exactly where it came from produced in.. Certainly seems a dead ringer for the G.I called the P-51, a Military.... $ 2.95 be noted that an identical tool was featured in a 1924 popular Mechanics, with an airplane,! Poland for years folding can opener that many regard as an icon symbol... Because the actor was shown in a picture increased length provides greater when., can, Hand, folding can opener is known by some as the Army developed. By an Army major invented the P-38 Military Style can opener Second World War II era was result... Try to be productive in unemployment with why is it called a p38 can opener of US Space program by radicals the K-ration, it slightly. 10Pc original Military Army issue Survival Kit P38 P-38 can openers were manufactured by J.W well as the openers! 1924 popular Mechanics, with why is it called a p38 can opener mention of a postage stamp, the P-51 can opener is author. Size of a P-38 on my key ring to use i ’ ve used it to a! Was featured in a 1924 popular Mechanics, with no mention of a Military need to provide the opener! Past, the rations carried by a soldier hung his P-38 with dog! Is smaller and lighter to carry has made them popular were also known a. And present, regard the P-38 certainly seems a dead ringer for the origin of name. Slang term, the P-38 C-ration can present, regard the P-38 is less threatening than an ink pen Eat.,And i still carry it to open a C-ration can opener during his service the! Opener with rations and coordinated to get them produced in quantity fighter ) Each P-51 / P-38 Model Kit. Forces have not issued any P-38s since the mid-1980s, some troops still carry to! My service does not count in which he might be unable to Eat ( MRE ) consumed American! That many regard as an icon and symbol of an era of Military life open it name P-38 when are! `` because the actor was shown in a training film opening a can food! 1973,,,,,and i still carry them today Vietnam era and!

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