Want a traditional bowie knife

Discussion in 'Knives & Edged Items' started by johnlives4christ, Mar 21, 2009.

  1. johnlives4christ

    johnlives4christ Former Guest

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    i've been keeping my eyes peeled for a while in hopes of finding a good quality bowie knife. i dont know a lot of how to describe what i want, but i know what i want when i see it. i've seen pictures in the boot "packing iron" of bowies that i like. they aren't much over 12-14 inches long, the handls are normally just plain bone with like 6 small rivets or maybe 3 big ones. the corners of the handels are clipped and it has a small handguard. the blade looks like it is around 1/8 maybe 3/16 thick at the most. anyways. if anyone knows of a manufacturer of something that fits this description of the traditional bowie. i might have one made custom, but i dont want to spend over 250 dollars. anyone got any suggestions let me know. must be made in usa as well
    ~john
  2. tim peterson

    tim peterson Member

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    Hey john you might try ebay I saw about a thousand on there site when I was looking for a Bowie knife. good luck!
  3. Shooter45

    Shooter45 *Administrator* Staff Member

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  4. johnlives4christ

    johnlives4christ Former Guest

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    hi shooter45. i checked the link out and there wasn't anything that i really liked, thanks for the help though. and thanks tim for the suggestion on ebay, i have looked on there once in a while but havent found anything that comforms to the pattern i want, i'll see if i can find a pic of what i want somewhere
  5. tim peterson

    tim peterson Member

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    Heres another you might try Smoky mountain knife works. I used them once or twice and there good folks!
  6. ckill1

    ckill1 New Member

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    Hopefully my next bowie will be a Randall made, course I will need to come up with the funds, but they are worth every penny. For the money you want to spend, I would look to ebay for a DeLeon. Enido DeLeon makes some truly beautiful knives, and his prices are reasonable. I picked up a push dagger of his from ebay for about 200.00 last year. Try there first. If you decide to go custom, PM me and I will send you the contact info for a local maker in Nebraska named Sloan. He has a myspace page, but its a PIA to order. He does great work, his knives are incredibly light for their size, and hold an edge well. Think hes working on his journeyman smith title now so his prices wont stay low for long...let me know.

    chris
  7. Vasily Zaytsev

    Vasily Zaytsev New Member

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    JOhn,

    The Bowie bothers made 30 odd blades in less than 20 years.

    The first and the last are the most famous.

    I own, and believe the first bowie was the best. Made by Gourge Searles of Baton Rouge LA. A famous blade smith of the times, and whom made most of the Bowie original blades.

    There were two made. Jim's is in the Santa Anna museum in Mexico City, His brothers (who he gave to Col Fowler) is at the Alamo today.

    After I bought mine, I happened by the Alamo, and brought mine in, and had it close enough to the class case to see this one listed below is as close as you can get.

    http://www.imperialweapons.com/knives/Ip-203.html

    Im was made by a different company (Dixie Gun Works) and was a very limited run. The blade is made from better steel. But the one listed looks more like the one in the Alamo.

    This knife was designed to knife fight with. Mine cut thru a 1/2 semi mud flap with two finger ease.

    The Iron Mistress was the other famous one. It was huge, and Imperial sells a version of it. Id not get cought carrying one, its as big as an axe/cleaver.

    I will carry mine, the rest of my days
  8. Bill DeShivs

    Bill DeShivs Active Member

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    Vasily
    The "Iron Mistress" type knife was never used by either James or rezin Bowie. It is a 1950s invention.
    The knife Bowie used in the sand bar fight was a large butcher knife.
    The Searles knives are very well made pieces, and authentic. There are ony 2 known that can be attributed to the Bowies. The Dixie Gun Works versions are made in India.
  9. johnlives4christ

    johnlives4christ Former Guest

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    thanks everyone for your replies. i have looked online for a little while trying to find even a picture of the one i want, much less a reproduction or an original. the only place i have seen it is in the book packing iron. the book is about gun leather, but the knife is pictured in a photo with some other things. as well there is another version pictured several pages later. the only thing that comes close to what i want is the BEAR MGC bowie, it's about 15 inches overall. the shape of it is the general shape i want but the blade isnt the exact shape i want, the main dislike that i have towards the bear knife is the size. i want it to be in the 12" range. i want slab side handles and a brass guard. i dont have a scanner at the house but i do at work and sometime when i'm not to hard at it i'll upload the picture from the book so you can see exactly what im talking about. i have looked for several hours online and off and on on ebay. and i cant find anything like it of modern manufacture, nor any originals for that matter. i have about come to the conclusion that i will have to have the knife custom made from the picture. i have looked at a bunch of differant websites from custom knife makers and haven seen anything like i want. seen similar on occasion. one thing that is important to me is the blade material. i dont like stainless steel. i want some type of carbon steel. im not up to date of the types of steel, but for referance the old tree brand bokers and old case pocket knives both have good steel that holds an edge well and sharpens easy. and i want to have buffalo horn handles on it, with a black belt sheath.

    anyways. i know about exactly what i want. so know i reckon the search for the right person to make it is under way. i wouldn't want to may over 400 for it with sheath and buffalo horn handles, and get him to throw in shipping as well.
    maybe im dreaming i dont know
    ~john
  10. johnlives4christ

    johnlives4christ Former Guest

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    hey if anyone has the book packing iron, and would be willing to scan the page and post it i would appreciate it. the first picture is page 86 the next is page 90. i like the knife in the later picture better.

    ~john
  11. Bill DeShivs

    Bill DeShivs Active Member

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    John
    Email me the pictures through my web site.
    I can probably help you.
  12. johnlives4christ

    johnlives4christ Former Guest

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    Bill, i will have to scan them first. sometime when i have use of the computer at work
    i'll see if i can do it in the next couple days
  13. Vasily Zaytsev

    Vasily Zaytsev New Member

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    Naw, The brass backstrapped bowie was a Bowie design. The movie version was not.

    The DGW version was made in Italy. Well the blade was on mine. It says so under the wood.
  14. Bill DeShivs

    Bill DeShivs Active Member

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    No knife that can be attributed to either Bowie had a brass backstrap. The Searles knives had the maker's mark engraved on an inlayed, gold oval on the spine of the blades. There are no old bowies with a brass backstrap.
  15. Vasily Zaytsev

    Vasily Zaytsev New Member

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  16. Bill DeShivs

    Bill DeShivs Active Member

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    Anyone can write in Wikipedia. It is quite simply, wrong.
    Consensus among experts in the field is that there were no brass backstraps.
  17. Vasily Zaytsev

    Vasily Zaytsev New Member

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    Being that none of us are that old, we will never know
  18. Tom Militano

    Tom Militano New Member

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    Your wasting your breath Bill. Bowie's blade was made by James Black, not Bowie.
  19. Bill DeShivs

    Bill DeShivs Active Member

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    The Bowies never made any knives. Whether James Black made the "first" Bowie knife is the subject of some speculation among serious cutlery scholars.
    Last edited: Apr 30, 2009
  20. Tom Militano

    Tom Militano New Member

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    And we'll never know for sure if Black did make the knife for Bowie, your right.
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