Western Bowie

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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HVAC
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Western Bowie

Post by HVAC » Sun Dec 15, 2019 2:13 pm

I read the threads on the Western Bowie from what I read it appears the one I have is the first version 1965-1966? thanks for your help
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kootenay joe
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Re: Western Bowie

Post by kootenay joe » Sun Dec 15, 2019 3:12 pm

I cannot say for sure it is the first of the Western 49's but it looks to have been buffed. I have never seen one with a mirror finish before. We do have a member who is an expert on this knife. Hope he chimes in.
kj

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Re: Western Bowie

Post by Gunsil » Sun Dec 15, 2019 4:39 pm

Yes, it is an early version, like KJ says, it looks heavily buffed as does your Case hunting knife. The early ones did not have a super shiny finish although the later models did have a crocus finish. Some folks likes 'em shiny, many prefer original finish.

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zzyzzogeton
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Re: Western Bowie

Post by zzyzzogeton » Sun Dec 15, 2019 5:05 pm

Yes, it is one of the first post-WW2/KW versions. 1964 to 1965 or maybe early 1966. The first ads for these came out in 1964.

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Re: Western Bowie

Post by HVAC » Sun Dec 15, 2019 8:03 pm

Thanks everyone for your response

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Colonel26
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Re: Western Bowie

Post by Colonel26 » Sun Dec 15, 2019 9:51 pm

kootenay joe wrote:
Sun Dec 15, 2019 3:12 pm
I cannot say for sure it is the first of the Western 49's but it looks to have been buffed. I have never seen one with a mirror finish before. We do have a member who is an expert on this knife. Hope he chimes in.
kj
HVAC wrote:
Sun Dec 15, 2019 8:03 pm
Thanks everyone for your response
As to their having a mirror finish, this one is brand new in the box, never sharpened or carried, along with the original box, papers, and sales recite dated Dec 19, 1967. I purposefully took the pic inside under the light. Notice the reflection. I cannot speak for the OP knife. But the originals were quite well polished.
D3EC2E83-7D37-41F4-84B3-995E85C493A9.jpeg
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8252865E-BE4B-4E8A-97BB-A24B7700565B.jpeg
9C04A162-8A67-4B19-9333-082BA46A717A.jpeg
“There are things in the old Book which I may not be able to explain, but I fully accept it as the infallible word of God, and receive its teachings as inspired by the Holy Spirit.”
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HVAC
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Re: Western Bowie

Post by HVAC » Mon Dec 16, 2019 12:09 am

Colonel26 wrote:
Sun Dec 15, 2019 9:51 pm
kootenay joe wrote:
Sun Dec 15, 2019 3:12 pm
I cannot say for sure it is the first of the Western 49's but it looks to have been buffed. I have never seen one with a mirror finish before. We do have a member who is an expert on this knife. Hope he chimes in.
kj
HVAC wrote:
Sun Dec 15, 2019 8:03 pm
Thanks everyone for your response
As to their having a mirror finish, this one is brand new in the box, never sharpened or carried, along with the original box, papers, and sales recite dated Dec 19, 1967. I purposefully took the pic inside under the light. Notice the reflection. I cannot speak for the OP knife. But the originals were quite well polished. D3EC2E83-7D37-41F4-84B3-995E85C493A9.jpeg3B67083E-E3CB-4703-9590-4DDB1319943C.jpeg8252865E-BE4B-4E8A-97BB-A24B7700565B.jpeg9C04A162-8A67-4B19-9333-082BA46A717A.jpeg
Beautiful Knife, thanks for sharing

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Dinadan
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Re: Western Bowie

Post by Dinadan » Mon Dec 16, 2019 3:23 am

Those are two beautiful knives. Someone had a heck of a Christmas present in 1967!
Mel

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Re: Western Bowie

Post by Gunsil » Mon Dec 16, 2019 1:54 pm

I have one like the OP and have sold another, both had a "satin" finish on the blades and were not shiny. Perhaps the first models had the satin finish and they went to full crocus (shiny) finish for the second version as the colonel shows. ZZZY, what say you regarding early versions with satin finish?? It is obvious that the OP knife has been buffed, all the brass is too bright.

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Re: Western Bowie

Post by zzyzzogeton » Mon Dec 16, 2019 5:48 pm

It's impossible for me to say what the 1st version had out the factory door as I have never encountered one IN PERSON. Every "Inverted Bowie" (IB) version, save 1, that I have/had/seen has either had a well-developed "use patina" or had that "rode hard and put up wet" appearance.

The lone shiny IB I have seen was an obvious polished up job. The stamps were really feathery looking. The owner insisted that it was a factory finish until I pulled out one that was well-used but had really clear, sharp stamps. He had always assumed that "shiny meant unused" and never paid attention to the condition of the stamps and what could be read from their condition.

It would appear that the OP knife has clear stamps, although I can't say for sure with my monitor and eyes. The overall condition of both knife and sheath would appear to be consistent with an unused/seldom used knife.

From my encounters with them, I could say that they were never sold with a box since I have never seen one. Obviously, that's a BS statement because naturally knives as large as the IBs with large sheaths came in boxes. I would love to see an original box from the IB era.

On another note, the Colonel's post pulls the dangler sheath introduction date into 1967. The 1968 catalog reprints indicate that the dangler sheath was "new for 1968". A knife sold on 19 Dec 1967 would have left the factory not later than November 67, and may have been sitting on the shelf for longer than that, depending on sales volume and stock rotation (did the clerks move older knives forward?) although knives don't spoil like food products.

Colonel -- could we get a picture of the backside of the sheath? That will show the rivet styles - solid or grommet style.

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Colonel26
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Re: Western Bowie

Post by Colonel26 » Mon Dec 16, 2019 7:25 pm

I’ll try to get some pics tonight. It’s raining cats and dogs here so they may have to be poor pics inside but I’ll do my best.
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Colonel26
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Re: Western Bowie

Post by Colonel26 » Tue Dec 17, 2019 1:06 am

zzyzzogeton wrote:
Mon Dec 16, 2019 5:48 pm
It's impossible for me to say what the 1st version had out the factory door as I have never encountered one IN PERSON. Every "Inverted Bowie" (IB) version, save 1, that I have/had/seen has either had a well-developed "use patina" or had that "rode hard and put up wet" appearance.

The lone shiny IB I have seen was an obvious polished up job. The stamps were really feathery looking. The owner insisted that it was a factory finish until I pulled out one that was well-used but had really clear, sharp stamps. He had always assumed that "shiny meant unused" and never paid attention to the condition of the stamps and what could be read from their condition.

It would appear that the OP knife has clear stamps, although I can't say for sure with my monitor and eyes. The overall condition of both knife and sheath would appear to be consistent with an unused/seldom used knife.

From my encounters with them, I could say that they were never sold with a box since I have never seen one. Obviously, that's a BS statement because naturally knives as large as the IBs with large sheaths came in boxes. I would love to see an original box from the IB era.

On another note, the Colonel's post pulls the dangler sheath introduction date into 1967. The 1968 catalog reprints indicate that the dangler sheath was "new for 1968". A knife sold on 19 Dec 1967 would have left the factory not later than November 67, and may have been sitting on the shelf for longer than that, depending on sales volume and stock rotation (did the clerks move older knives forward?) although knives don't spoil like food products.

Colonel -- could we get a picture of the backside of the sheath? That will show the rivet styles - solid or grommet style.
It’s still raining like crazy. I took several pics. Which I’ll post up in a different thread along with the story behind the knife. But here are the sheath pics.
9671906B-3CC0-406A-AECB-E9C0CCE52A6C.jpeg
F47C6AB1-509A-4932-B72F-412BDBE14E0C.jpeg
D9D04468-2BC6-4398-9C80-2F0CE9014C18.jpeg
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Re: Western Bowie

Post by zzyzzogeton » Tue Dec 17, 2019 4:32 am

Colonel -

That's a great pic showing the solid rivets on the back of the Western Bowie/W49 sheaths. At some point down the road, some bean counter determined that replacing those 2 solid rivets with lanyard hole style rivets was cheaper in the long run because that's what Western did - no more solid rivets.

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Re: Western Bowie

Post by btrwtr » Wed Dec 18, 2019 12:33 pm

zzyzzogeton can you tell me what a KW version is?
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Re: Western Bowie

Post by zzyzzogeton » Thu Dec 19, 2019 5:23 am

KW means Korean War. My post was intended to mean that the IB version (Inverted Bowie) was the first Bowie made by Western after WW2 and also after the Korean War.

Western's WW2 Bowie was the Bx54, it's authorized clone of the Collins No. 18 Pequeno Machete, improperly called the "V44", and was most likely the predecessor for the Bowie/W49.

I said/implied/hinted with the reference to post-WW2/KW that they were made after the KW ceasefire had been implemented. That's because I've seen a lot of folks say that the early "BOWIE" stamped bowies were Korean War vintage or 1950s vintage, which is bogus male bovine defecatory material.

Now when I say "BOWIE" here, I'm referring to the W49/brass S-guard knives. An argument could be made for the "Big 8", the L46-8, as being the first post-Wars (2 and KW) Bowie, since it is actually closer to the original Sandbar Fight Bowie than any of the later "wanna-bee" since it was first "re-introduced in the mid-1950s.

But that's a line of thought that needs it's own thread. :mrgreen:

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