Bear and Son Knives


March 21, 2008, 11:05 AM
Anyone own one? Got an Opinion?

I bought 2 of them on a whim from Smokey Mountain Knife Works when I was surfing around. I saw they were made in the USA (AL) and thought since they sure looked nice in the pics, I should support a USA company.

Both are mid sized lock back folders (3 3/4" closed). One has a Dascumus Steel blade and Amarillo Bone handle. The other has a regular Carbon Steel blade and Indian Sambar Stag handle.

Looks like I'll have a little over $90.00 tied up in the 2 of them.

Any personal experiece with this company would be appreciated.

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March 21, 2008, 11:57 AM
I've got several. Some of them are from limited numbered series, usually a series of a 1000. The razor in the picture is number 74, the yellow handled damascus is 141 and the doctor's knife is 148.

Bear and Son is located in Jackson Alabama, about 60 miles north of Mobile and the Gulf Coast. I think the company changed hands some time a few years back. I knew the son of the quality control man and I think that was what he told me as his father was part of the transition.

Bear and son knives are very like a few other American made ones in my collection. I'll attach a picture of three knives with razor blades. One is by Bear, and the others by Schrade USA and Walden Knife. Handle material, logo and stamps and printing are the noticable differences.

I think Bear offers a very good quality product. I'd buy some more of them for my very limited collection.

March 21, 2008, 05:29 PM
Good company run by good people making good knives.:D

They had been sold to Victorinox, but one of the previous owners bought it back.

March 21, 2008, 10:39 PM
with a sheephorn handle. Sierra Trading Post occasionally has them in stock and when they do they are even cheaper than SMKW. Maybe when I get my $600.00 from the "Incumbent Congress Critter Retention Act of 2008" I won't feel guilty about buying another blade ( grin ).

March 22, 2008, 08:34 PM
I appreciate the replys. I will be sure to post some pics and my opinion of these blades when they come in.

March 25, 2008, 07:06 AM
Actually, Bear & Son Cutlery, Inc, aka Bear MGC, is located between Gadsden, which itself is in NE Alabama off I59, and Anniston, in E Alabama off I20 - in Jacksonville, AL - actually, a city vs the 'wide spot in the road' Jackson, AL, which is in L.A. (Lower Alabama). They also have 'Alabama Damascus', the largest cutlery company owned source of Damascus in the country. Their 512 layer Damascus, while not as pretty as the teardrop style on my custom 110, is real - and effective. Probably the best buy, by pound-o-Damascus per buck, is their Damascus Bowie. SMKW usually has one with the 12+" OAL for $99.99.

I guess I'd rate their overall quality as good+, while some pieces range up to Exc+, some are quite pedestrian. I fortunately bought the hard-to-close #297 (5" closed lockback/oak handle) from Academy - and exchanged it. The new 597D, Damascus/Stag, I bought via evil-bay was perfect. Make sure the store you buy from will take returns if you can - many mail order places will. I guess I shouldn't berate them for that one bad example - I have others that are fine, too. It's always good to buy home grown... which I did last autumn with my Kershaw Damascus Leek - it's blade was from Alabama Damascus.


PS - Their catalog states 440 SS blade steel - but not the suffix.

March 27, 2008, 12:39 AM
I have a Bear MGC lockback (pretty much a Buck 110 clone) I got in a knife shop in West Yellowstone, MT, that I've never used, but glad I bought. Well made, affordable, a keeper.

April 1, 2008, 12:33 AM
I have three Bear fixed blade knives. The first was a fine 4" blade hunting knife that I purchased 20 years ago. It has been used heavily and has given excellent service. It takes a good edge and holds it. The other two Bears look great but haven't been used. What would anybody use a 12" damascus Bowie knife for? But it sure is a fine paperweight. The third one is a more practical six inch Bowie with polished bone scales. I don't have any real use for it either, but it looks good and feels good in the hand. Perhaps I'll take it with me if we invade Mexico again.

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