Last Updated :: 9/29/2009 5:41:32 PM EDT
I recently obtained a copy of a historically correct bowie blade made by Bark River Knife and Tool of Escanaba Michigan.
My wife actually won this knife, and gave it to me over the Labor day weekend, so this is a regular production model with red micarta handles.
(I'd like to thank the folks at BRK&T for donating this knife to the Wilderness Learning Center, and Marty and Aggie Simon for hosting a knarly buch of us on Labor day Weekend.)
The first thing that impressed me was the fit and finish of the handle material to the full tang.
The steel finish of the blade is what you would expect from Bark River Knives, a utility grade polish, this knife is all business.
The sheath that came with the blade is full grain cowhide and consists o a sheath that can be wore two ways.
The traditional way to carry a bowie is thou the belt, with the stud of the sheath place thru a buckle hole of the belt or gunbelt.
The second way to carry this knife is with the belt loop frog that comes with the sheath attached.
I have a few apple branches that were recently cut, so I wondered how the Rogue would handle splitting and chopping tasks normally found in fieldcraft.
The first test was to split the knottyest piece of applewood I could find, I used a baton on both the tip (not recommended) and the blade closest to the handle to see if this would cause any damage ti the knife.
Here are a few pictures of the process just before the limb split completely in half.
Note the knot in the next frames:
Two more wacks of another piece of apple, and it completed the split.
The next test I performed was on a forearm sized limb, I decided to make one cut first to illustrate the chopping power of this well balanced blade.
I then decided to give myself 10 seconds of pure chopping in the same area of that first chop, this was what I came up with at the 10 second mark:
The balance of the blade is a bit forward of the front tang, well balanced for both slashing thrusting and chopping in a defensive scenario.
The handle is the classic coffin design, but slimmer and more ergonomic than any other coffin handle Bowie I've used.
The only critical thing I can say about this blade is that the lack of a cross guard, might be a consideration if your hands were wet, especially with the linen handles that came on this particular knife.
I believe that the stag handle option might be more the ticket on a knife for self defense.
Overall Length: 12.125 inches
Blade Length: 7.125 inches
Steel: A-2 Tool Steel
Hardness: 58 RC
Thickness: .215 inches
Weight: 11.75 ounces
Bark River Knife & Tool
6911 County Road 426 M Pt. 5 Rd.
Escanaba, MI 49829