Beard & Bates’ Model 1828 Bowie Knife is quite possibly the toughest, largest, and most unapologetically no-nonsense and rugged Bowie knife you’ll ever find. This custom blade is in a class all it’s own: it’s 17″ long, has a real stag horn handle, has a hand-forged high carbon steel blade that is rough, unrefined and raw with a razor sharp edge. Call this the King of Bowie knives.
The Bowie knife was created in 1828 for acclaimed knife fighter Jim Bowie and subsequently became an American icon; the knife design was highly popular until the end of the Civil War, and then in the mid 20th century saw a resurgence. American historian Russel T. Johnson described the Bowie knife as that which, “must be long enough to use as a sword, sharp enough to use as a razor, wide enough to use as a paddle, and heavy enough to use as a hatchet.” The Beard & Bates Model 1828 pays homage to all the key values of a Bowie, and it does so in grand scale.
Hand-forging and heat treating a knife is an extensive process. It takes hours of labor and days to go from billet to blade, but hand-forged, high carbon steel knives that have undergone proper heat treatment are extremely tough and hold an edge that most production blades simply cannot match. Each Model 1828 is a unique creation born of fire that bears the Beard & Bates maker’s mark.
The Model 1828 is complemented by a heavy-duty, triple layer, double stitched vegetable-tanned leather sheath. In historic fashion the sheath is complete with belt peg and leather frog, enabling the user to remove the underlying sheath while leaving the frog still looped on one’s belt.
This is not a pretty refined production knife. It’s raw, it’s big, it’s rough-forged, it’s tougher and stronger than stainless steel, yet it’s also more prone to rusting (that’s why its important to oil this knife). This is a stunningly rugged knife that’s meant to be used and abused.