How to Clean a Bowie Knife? 8 Steps to Follow

It is quite essential to clean a Bowie knife to maintain its performing capabilities. Numerous factors affect the quality of these knives. Rust and Dust are considered the two key factors responsible for the destruction of these special knives.

But, do not worry, because we have come up with the 8 best steps that can help you greatly in cleaning a Bowie knife. In addition, you should consider that each of these steps must be followed to be effective.

The blade or handle of your knife can easily be damaged if you skip just one of these. Make sure you read the entire article until the end if you are looking for an accurate knife-cleaning method.

How to Clean a Bowie Knife?

How to clean an old Bowie Knife? It is an interesting question that people often ask us on this website. Well, thankfully the cleaning steps are the same that we will explain in the lines given below.

1. Find the Proper Products

The first main step that you have to follow to get the rust off your Bowie knives is to choose the most suitable clean products. Such products include towels, water, oils, and sinks.

Be sure that these products are clean and washed before using them to wipe down Bowie knives. Moreover, the most major product on this list is the oil, so always choose the best-quality one for your special Bowie knives.

2. Oil the Knives

To clean a rusty Bowie knife, you have to start oiling it from one side. To do this, place the knife on a specific piece of cloth and run a line of oils from the handle to the tip end of the knife.

You can use both your fingertips and a certain cloth for this process. Make sure you rub the knives strongly with these oils on both sides of these knives, for about 3 or more minutes.

3. Wipe the Oils

After rubbing the oils strongly on the blade and handles of these knives, it is now time to wipe the oils out. For this purpose, you must take a damp towel and wrap the Bowie knives in it.

Now, rub the knives carefully up and down, this will prevent you from any cuts or other damage. As a result, the oils would be fully removed from the surface of these knives along with rust and dust.

4. Use the Water 

In this step, you just have to dip your Bowie knives into a water container such as a jar or a cup. In addition, it would be best to keep the water away from the portion present between the handles and blades of such knives.

This is because water can adhere in this small portion and will result in the rustiness of these knives. Moreover, do not use any chemical or mixture in the water container for cleaning purposes to keep these knives safer.

5. Dry the Knives

At this point, you might think that this stainless Bowie knife blade cleaning process is complete. However, they are still halfway to being rust-proof. Thus, after washing them, you have to let them dry for about 5 minutes.

Now, again oil on both sides of these knives including their handles with good-quality oils. You have to follow the same procedure given in the second heading on this list.

6. Rub the Knives

As we have told you that this oiling process does take time and concentration. Therefore, after oiling them, you have to again warp them in damp towels and rub them carefully up and down for 3–4 minutes.

Now, wash them with warm water without leaving them in the water container. By doing this, the rust on them will be greatly weakened, and you will begin to see them peeling.

7. Clear the Dust Points

Once you are done with the rust problem, it is now time to overcome the dust and dirt stains on these knives. You just need to find these stains on both blades and handles of such knives carefully and examine them.

Now, put a few drops of oil on the place and take the same damp towel to rub it down carefully. It will depend on your strength and how long it takes you to remove these dirt stains from the main knives.

8. Use a Clean Cloth

Last but not the least, you have to clean these knives with the help of a thick towel or cloth. But, make sure it is clean and dry to make this stainless steel more shining and elegant.

Thus, you just have to wrap these Bowie knives in a clean cloth and rub their blade and handle back and forth with strength or power. But, make sure to carefully clean the blades without damaging your hands.

How to Clean a Rusty Bowie Knife?

The steps given in the upper list are capable to clean a Bowie knife from dust and dirt. However, the 2 best steps that we are about to explain are sure to force both rust and dust out of such knives. 

1. Using White Vinegar

The first and most basic step to clean a rusty Bowie knife involves the use of White Vinegar. As the Vinegar contains acetic acid in it that has the highest potential to force the rust out of these special knives.

You just need to put a little amount of White vinegar in a water solution and dip these Bowie knives in it. After leaving it for a time, you would notice that all the rust will come off, and you just have to clean the knives with a clean cloth.

2. Add the Baking Soda

The second and yet another easy step in cleaning a rusty knife involves the use of Baking Soda. You just need to add a good amount of this baking soda into the water and dip the knives in it for one night.

This baking soda will absorb all the rust, dust, and dirt particles from these knives and help you in getting a brand-new stainless Bowie knife. So, make sure to check out both of these procedures.

Tips to Keep the Bowie Knives Safe:

Well, here are two main tips that you can follow to keep your Bowie knives safe. There are numerous other tips that you can follow, but these two are the most effective ones.

1. Buy a Knife Sheath

The first tip to clean your Bowie knife is to buy a Knife Sheath made from the finest materials such as Leather from the local markets. These sheathe will keep your knives safe from dust, dirt, and rust for a longer time.

2. Prevent the Knives from Water

Secondly, do your best to keep the Bowie knives safe from water. As water easily enters the sensitive regions of your knives and causes the products to rust by damaging that specific place or knife region.


What is special about a Bowie knife?

Bowie’s knives are not only used for skin and butcher games but can also be used as hunting knives. With the blade’s straight edge toward the guard, you can cut meat while the top clip bevel can be used to remove the skin from a carcass.

Does Jim Bowie’s knife still exist?

Texans have a chance to own a piece of Texas history thanks to the Texas Ranger Hall of Fame Museum. It is believed that the knife was donated to the museum over the holidays by Rezin Bowie, Jim Bowie’s big brother.

How do you clean a Bowie knife without damaging it?

You can clean a Bowie Knife by running it under warm water or by washing it in a container/bowl with warm water and mild dish soap.

Except for wood and a few other sensitive materials, fully submerging the handle in water is safe for most materials. The entire knife can be cleaned with a drop or two of soap.

Final Verdict:

In order to clean a Bowie Knife, we concluded the 8 best and most effective steps starting from choosing the right products. As we informed you about oiling these Bowie knives, rubbing them carefully, and then washing them with warm or cold water.

However, in the case of Rusted knives, the use of baking soda and white vinegar can help you a lot in removing the rust. In the end, we provided the best 2 tips for using a knife sheath and preventing the knives from water.

We hope that you would like the information we have delivered in this article. Moreover, do not forget to check out further post-related articles on this website.

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