Assistance Sought - Gerber BMF and original LMF knives


October 20, 2013, 01:53 PM
Greetings all,

I'm new to this particular forum, but not to knives, knife collecting, or forums in general.

I am compiling a history of the Gerber BMF and original LMF knives. I have already documented nearly 480 BMFs and more than 200 original LMFs -- enough to identify some distinct patterns. I am also in periodic contact with a representative of Gerber. Unfortunately, Gerber has absolutely no records or documentation about the serial numbers on these knives. One of my hopes is to eventually be able to identify the approximate year of manufacture by serial number range. However, that is still a very VERY long way off.

I've already made some interesting discoveries. For example, Gerber records show they made BMFs with four blade profiles. However, I have conclusively demonstrated SIX distinct blade profiles, and I know how they "lost" two of them. I have also documented five sheath variations and know that one of them is extremely rare -- it was produced during a double-transition period when changes were being made to the logo AND the type of metal belt clip(s) being used.

I'd like to engage in conversations with other Gerber BMF/Original LMF owners/collectors with an eye to gathering as much information as possible. Of course, I am more than willing to share the information I collect with members of this Forum. In case this looks familiar, I have started similar threads on other forums.

Any and all responses are welcome.


-- Nighteyes

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October 21, 2013, 07:19 AM
You might type "BMF" or "LMF" in to the search function and find who has posted about them and PM them.

November 2012 I believe was my last post on mine. A friend bought it pre 1990 it had a nylon sheath with a military style belt clip and a sharpening steel attached to the sheath. There are rough pictures of both sides of it and the sheath in the topic in different posts.

While it may be a Basic Multi Function knife to some it is not my first choice for a knife, it seems a bit heavy, long, and stout for most chores. I suppose if I were in a Hienlienisque "Tunnel in the Sky" situation and only allowed one knife and no other tool/weapon I might consider it but would upset the collectors by doing something about that thick grip. Even then a knife shaped and put together in an Orlando, Florida orange grove would be preferable.


October 21, 2013, 12:12 PM
Thanks. I had planned to do exactly that, AFTER starting this thread.

Gerber actually made your BMF for The Cutlery Shoppe, and they sold them under the name "Predator." Not only is the knife slightly different from the original BMF, but the sheath differs as well. There is no compass pouch, no accessory strap, and no metal belt clip(s). The serial number of your knife should begin with "CS...". By the way, would you provide the serial number of your knife, so I can include it in my database?

The rust problem you described is a very common thing, particularly for BMFs and original LMFs that were left in their original sheaths. I have "rescued" about a dozen or so (six each, oddly enough) which I am gradually cleaning and getting ready for resale as user blades. There's something in the sheaths that cause or promote rust over the longer term. The patterns of rust are nearly identical across the board, frequently resembling the weave of the fabric the sheaths are made of.

The finish, by the way, is applied. Bead-blasting would be one way to remove it.

A number of folks have polished their BMFs just to see what they look like. Not too shabby.

Shanghai McCoy
October 21, 2013, 05:24 PM
I thought they were pretty cool looking,albeit large, knives when they came out.
I also got a kick out of the LMF/BMF designation as well...;)

October 21, 2013, 08:42 PM
I thought they were pretty cool looking,albeit large, knives when they came out.
I also got a kick out of the LMF/BMF designation as well...;)
The LMFs (the ones without the saw backs, at least) were actually sensible, user knives. The BMFs, on the other hand, were too big for some tasks, too small for others, and improperly designed for still others. Still, they were lighter and, IMO, a good bit more functional than their primary competitor, the Buck Model 186 "Buckmaster." The fact that both BMFs and original LMFs are serial-numbered makes them prime candidates for collecting, which is why I embarked on documenting their history.

There is some disagreement about what BMF and LMF actually stood for. Gerber's "official" explanation was that BMF stood for "Basic Multi Functional" and LMF stood for "Light Multi Functional." But that ain't what most folks believed!

October 30, 2013, 10:37 PM
UPDATE: I searched thru earlier posts and contacted those who said they had a BMF or original LMF. As of now there have been no responses from them, or to this thread.

Anyone? Anyone? Buehler? Anyone? :D ;)

-- Nighteyes

November 28, 2013, 07:47 PM
Hello Nighteyes!

Just came across this forum and I just wanted to hear if you are still taking on this task to document the LMF/BMF. Very admirable that you have taken upon you this task/interest. I have a LMF, serial 037649, which I bought back in 94 when I was stationed as a UN soldier in Croatia. I'd love to send you the details about it, or some pictures. Just let me know what you need. To reach me use delinde plus that mail sign, then googles mail service dot com :).

December 2, 2013, 10:34 AM

Yes, I'm still working on it! All I need are two pictures, one detailed shot of the blade from guard to point, and one of the logo on the sheath.

You can post them here.


-- Nighteyes

April 12, 2014, 10:51 PM
I still have my Gerber BMF from the early 80s. I carried it for over 20 years and abused it on numerous occasions as light infantry and SF. The serial number is 008148 and I bought it either at FT Benning or FT Bragg. It has a black nylon sheath with compass and sharpening stone and attaches to a pistol belt with 2 standard clips. I'd love to hear the results of your research.

June 1, 2014, 11:17 AM
I've still got a bmf from the early 90s, carried on my belt kit in Bosnia and Iraq, know what you mean about the sheaf tarnishing the blade over time, once I work out how to use this forum i'll post some pictures, serial number is 015984

June 2, 2014, 08:32 AM
If I disremember correctly BMF was officially Big Military fighter and LMF was little military fighter. Then again I could be wrong.

Jeff White
June 2, 2014, 05:09 PM
I had a BMF. Bought it at Ranger Joes outside of Ft Benning with TDY money from ANCOC in the fall of 1986. Beat it up in the field for several years then passed it down to my oldest son. I just text him and asked if he still had it.

It was the one without the serrations on the back of the blade. It cut plenty of brush, dug some holes and was a pretty good large field knife. I replaced it with a Rick Hill custom made subhilt fighter and gave it to my oldest son.

June 12, 2014, 03:52 PM
Model 22-01629

Caliche Kid
June 25, 2014, 05:16 PM
I finally found my old LMT in my collection. It too had rusted on the side that touches the sheath. Nylon polymer fabrics cause this as the acid leaches out over time and temperature and rusts things. Remember the old Remington Nylon 6 rifles? Pop the action out and you will find plenty of rust along the barrel where it contacted the Nylon stock. The serial number is 008786. I can't remember when I bought it.

September 10, 2014, 09:29 PM
Hi NightEyes,
I have what I think is an original Gerber BMF, with serial number 004276. See the attached images.

September 11, 2014, 03:22 PM
Yes you do have an original BMF. Still kicking myself for trading mine for a Ruger 10/22 back in '89.

And for also trading off a Cold Steel Tanto that the company CO wouldn't let me carry. Ahhh the late 80's and a Cutlery World in every mall.....the memories..

November 3, 2014, 03:58 PM
I have 9" non serrated BMF serial num. 048115

November 8, 2014, 04:21 PM
While not BMF or LMF knives, I've got a small collection of Gerber's that I was wondering about the value. There's a Mark I, with a woven nylon boot sheath, a Mark II with a woven nylon sheath that has a pouch for a sharpening stone, and a Tac II, that has a molded nylon sheath with a thumb-release lock. I've had them since the late '70s.

July 20, 2015, 12:55 PM
I bought my BMF in 1987 Serial Number: 20499 ( ( (

August 13, 2015, 04:26 AM
I have had one since Jan 1987. What would you like to know?

Sheath is banged up a bit but still as functional as ever. Blade is still almost mint condition (no rust) with the flat finish. I have had this thing in use in the Rockies (Colorado, Wyo, New Mexico), Alaska (interior) and in swamps of Louisiana.

Serial #045394

Lone Star
August 17, 2015, 05:34 PM

I agree about the book you mentioned, but remember, Rod carried two knives. And he could have carried other weapons, as most of his classmates did.

I always preferred knives from that shop in the Orlando orange grove that you mentioned, and now like Fallkniven, so can't say much about Gerber sheath knives.

But I'm glad to see that someone is researching them.

I do like Gerber's lockblade Applegate-Fairbairn folders. But they came so dull that I had to have them honed by a professional knifemaker. I think the little Mini-Covert was an exception.

Karl Heller
August 24, 2015, 12:03 PM
I have a BMF with Serial No. 001500. In the knife's case, there's literature about the compass, printed in 1981. I'd like to include some pics of the knife, etc., but can't see how that's done on this website.

August 24, 2015, 12:27 PM
Click "go advanced" -> "manage attachments"-> "upload" -> close.

Welcome to THR. :)


Karl Heller
August 24, 2015, 12:44 PM
Thanks for the 'welcome.' Would you tell me how to post pics, please?

August 24, 2015, 02:10 PM
Yes. Step by step instructions are in my first reply to you.

Karl Heller
August 24, 2015, 11:28 PM
Regarding Post #22, here are my pics.

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