OldKnifeCollector wrote:This is my favorite. My very first Western and the knife that got me into collecting.
OKC, Short answer - This knife is a post-WW2 knife, made sometime between 1946 and 1952. The pattern is a "28", the "small" bird and trout. Unfortunately, the exact model number is unknown.
The first clue to manufacturing date on pre-1977 Western fixed blades is any reference to the double-tang patent number.
Western allegedly dropped the patent reference in 1952, so for this one, the latest manufacturing date would be 1952. When it was purchased is anyone's guess - a 1951 knife night not have sold until 1960, as an exaggerated example, if sales were slow or stock wasn't rotated frequently.
I say "Allegedly" here as a comment in TKMWWW by Harlon Platts, the president, say they did. But I have 3 examples with both patent numbers AND model numbers, which didn't start until 1954, so 1952 to 1955 can be "IFFY".
Since it has "Made in USA" on it and a reference to the patent number, it was made AFTER WW2 ended.
The 28 is a post-WW2 pattern and from what I have determined researching through old outdoors magazines, Western didn't ADVERTISE any new models until 1947, so allowing a fudge factor for them possibly making the 28s prior to any mass advertising, 1946 would be the earliest it was made.
Most of Western's fixed blade sales from September 1945 to 1947 were WW2 era leftovers - G46-5 (Baby Shark), G46-6 (Shark), L71 (Seabees), L77 (Commando).
The exact model number is unknown as no catalogs from 1946 to 1949 were included in The Knife Makers Who Went West, with 1950 being the earliest included. The only 28s in TKMWWW for 1950 is the 28AP, with colored plastic handles and the L28, with stacked leather.
Going with pre-WW2 modeling, bone (which is what the handles appear to be on my monitor), the model would have been 528 if antler or 628 if bone, but I don't have any proof.
When they replaced bone and antler in 1961 with simulated bone Delrin plastic they assigned "6" as the Delrin plastic handle indicator.