Western W49 Bowie

Discussion in 'Camillus Collector's Forum' started by KC Huntin, Mar 31, 2012.

  1. zzyzzogeton

    zzyzzogeton

    Feb 17, 2013
    IS Coleman on the sheath or on the knife blade it self?

    Coleman began putting their name in conjunction with "WESTERN" around 1985, they had used up the WESTERN only stamped sheaths.

    I have NEVER seen a W49 with COLEMAN stamped on the blade. Would love to see pics of that.

    To my knowledge, Coleman only used Western's 1095 Cro-Van formulation of steel, as when they acquired the company, they simply kept using the equipment, facilities and contracts Western already had in place.

    AFTER Camillus bought the company around 1992, they moved all operations to Camillus NY and started using their primary high carbon steel, which I have been told was 0170-6C. Camillus shifted the W49 to SS after only a couple of years. 1994 or 1995, IIRC.
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2016
  2. tdbench

    tdbench

    4
    Apr 14, 2016
    I am watching two western w49 knifes marked k on ebay one is a Coleman Western with a mirrored blade. The other is a Western non polished blade. How can this be? Any information that anyone can provide will be greatly appreciated.
     
  3. tdbench

    tdbench

    4
    Apr 14, 2016
    I have two of the Coleman Western w49 Bowie knifes and they are not stamped on the blade, only on the sheaths.
     
  4. tdbench

    tdbench

    4
    Apr 14, 2016
    It has Coleman stamped on the blade? What year is it ?
     
  5. sac troop

    sac troop

    910
    Mar 4, 2009
    They would be blade marked like this with the year date codes of H thru O for 84-91.

    [​IMG]
     
  6. zzyzzogeton

    zzyzzogeton

    Feb 17, 2013
    All the blades left the factory with a "standard polish finish" that will be reflective, but not what I would "mirror". If one is really "mirror polished", it has been made so post-factory.

    I frequently see 1964 to 1976 made W49s in sheaths stamped "WESTERN" or "COLEMAN/WESTERN", which are obvious marriages of sheathless knives and a knifeless sheathes.

    The earliest I have been able to confirm a WESTERN stamped sheath is the "B", or 1978, versions. Both of my "A"s came with a typical, bare W49 sheath. I have a "B" in a bare sheath and one in a "WESTERN" stamped sheath. I assume from these 2 sheaths that the "B"s started getting made before Western ran out of the bare sheaths in inventory.

    I've seen similar scenarios with "H" knives.

    I am still looking for a W49 with either an "N" or "O" stamp. I have several "N" and a few "O" stamped knives, but I have never even seen a W49 so marked.
     
  7. sac troop

    sac troop

    910
    Mar 4, 2009
    Z, I've had hands on to several W49's with date codes from M to O, with two of them being O marked, so they are out there. Also saw detailed picture of O dated set of W45 thru W49, he was trying to torture me.
    Another picture of the knife I posted above. This knife did come from the factory this way including the handle that technically should list the knife as a 649. How polished it is will break down to impression.

    [​IMG]
     
  8. sac troop

    sac troop

    910
    Mar 4, 2009
    Regarding a non-polished blade W49. I have seen several, what I'll call "first version"knives with a brushed finish blade. Also several "first version" with the more common polished finish. I have no way to say for sure when these brushed finished blades occurred, but I've come to feel that they are more likely examples of the earliest ones at this point. Still I got to call it an IMHO and maybe a little too close to a WAG.:)
    "first version knife" is blade marked WESTERN/BOULDER, COLO. U.S.A. on the name side of the blade with BOWIE stamped on the reverse side of the blade.
     
  9. zzyzzogeton

    zzyzzogeton

    Feb 17, 2013
    I have an "N" W43, W45, and W47 and two W47 Camillus no date versions, 1 NIB, but nary a matching "N" W49. :( I'm also missing a "G" W49. I've seen 2 on fleabay within a week of each other a year or so ago, but I got beat out on both of them, badly. I figured more would show up someday. No such luck there so far. :(

    I "thought" I had a W49 "O", but when it got here, it turned out to be a "C" with scratch that made it look like a backwards "D". The guy claimed it was an "O" and swore that it was even when I questioned him on it. One of the few W49s that I've paid over $100 for.
     
  10. RaDMan66

    RaDMan66

    3
    Jan 31, 2017
    Hi. I have a knife given to me by my grandfather that is stamped "Western Bowie USA"; but no other marks on the blade or tang. That was sometime in the early 70's and it looked pretty rough already at that point. I've read thru the forums looking for a date range and know I wonder if this is perhaps a Bowie clone? Any help is appreciated. Thanks
     
  11. sac troop

    sac troop

    910
    Mar 4, 2009
    If the tang stamp looks like this:

    [​IMG]

    Many of us consider it the second version of the W49. Approximate date 66 and 67. Could be a little overlap for the specific time as it's hard to nail down the dates real precisely.
     
  12. RaDMan66

    RaDMan66

    3
    Jan 31, 2017
    Sac, that is exactly what it looks like, along with the small rivets. The time frame also matches up with what he shared; that my uncle carried it with him in Vietnam and then gave it to my grandfather. I've just basically had it put up in a box and my sons shared learning about Bowie and Crockett it school yesterday. Gave me a good reason to get it down and show it off. Thank you for the information.
     
  13. sac troop

    sac troop

    910
    Mar 4, 2009
    Do you have the sheath for it?
     
  14. RaDMan66

    RaDMan66

    3
    Jan 31, 2017
  15. d762nato

    d762nato Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 16, 2009
    That's pretty nice Radman and it looks like a flat grind on that blade and not a hollow type grind like on the later models like the one I had.
     
  16. gopguy

    gopguy

    2
    Apr 11, 2007
    Stumbled across this and hope to revive the discussion. I really admire these old knives.

    Here are my three Western W49 Bowie knives.
    The earliest variant is on the Left. Note smaller rivets and no high swinging belt loop. First variant blades also had "Bowie" markings. My later ones do not. The first model also does not have W49 on it. Sheath is plain with no hanging loop.

    The second knife is a post 1968 knife, this has no markings on the blade but has W-49 stamped on the brass cross guard on one side. Western USA on the other side of the guard. Sheath plain with hanging loop.

    My third variant is sadly pitted and a bit tired. It just says Western W49 USA on the blade. Note the different type snap coming over and down across the sheath. The snap says Western Western making a circle. As you can see this has the hanging loop.


    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  17. zzyzzogeton

    zzyzzogeton

    Feb 17, 2013
    Your first knife is the 2nd post-WW2 Bowie by Western, and was made between late 1965/early 1966 to 1967.

    Your second knife is from the 1973 to 1976 era. The 1968 to 1972 versions had WESTERN over Boulder Colo USA. Western dropped the reference to Boulder starting with 1973 knives.

    Your 3rd knife was made by Camillus 1992 to 2006. If the pitting is from actual rusting, then most likely your knife is a 1992 to 1993 or early 1994. For these 2 years, Camillus used either left over Coleman/Western blanks out of Western's 1095CV or Camillus' equivalent. At some point in 1994, Camillus shifted over to 420HC Stainless for the W49.
     
  18. gopguy

    gopguy

    2
    Apr 11, 2007
    Thanks for the info Zzyzzogeton.
     
  19. NO-REGARD

    NO-REGARD

    17
    May 30, 2010
    Some more great knives have been added to this post I see! It's such a shame about Photobucket changing there rules, so many good threads have been wrecked!!
     
  20. Duckdog

    Duckdog Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 26, 2012
    Yes, there are some great knives pictured in this thread, at least the ones that Photobucket hasn't compromised. I just found this thread while trying to get some information on a knife that I inherited; I hope that it isn't completely "dead".

    My knife is stamped WESTERN, but does not have any other stampings/etches, unlike the others discussed and shown. The blade is 9.25" and the knife is 14.75" OAL, slightly off the standard W49 measurements that I have seen. The wooden handle appears to have been sanded to remove a former darker finish. There is a wood screw through the butt end. And the hand guard is similar to some on other old Western hunting knives that I have seen, but unlike any W49 that I have seen. Any guesses as to what it is? An attempted fake W49? A parts knife assembled form old Coleman or Camillus left-overs? It's a keeper for me, as my stepfather had it, and I'm not concerned with value, just guidance on its possible background.

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    - Stuart
     

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