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The Smith and Wesson SWBG2TS Border Guard Rescue Knife is one mean SOB. I’ve been wanting to review this knife for a while now, and now that I’ve carried it I can finally do a review.
This knife has a large 4.4″ blade of 440C stainless steel and an overall length of 10″. Combine the big blade with a heavy glass breaker and solid steel liners and this knife sits right around 9 ounces. No doubt, it’s a heavy knife for heavy duty tasks. Don’t let the weight fool you, the deployment on this blade is fast, very fast. It has teflon washers that help flick out the blade with authority. The sound of the deployment alone is quite impressive. Its got a nice “crack” sound to it, faintly reminiscent of cambering a round in my S&W 1012.
This is a tanto blade with a saber grind. It’s coated in black teflon and has a couple reliefs / blood grooves cut into it. A tanto blade is great for piercing and thrust movements because of the heavily reinforced tip. This knife is designed for heavy, tactical use and the “border control” designation triggers in my mind visions of heavy duty tactical situations against Mexican drug lords; extreme defensive counters, slicing open large packages of black tar heroin, and conducting complicated field surgeries in addition to more mundane EDC tasks around the office like opening dossiers and spreading extra butter on your Texas toast – your mileage may vary.
The handle is made of 2 slabs of machined aircraft aluminum. It’s textured for grip and feels good in the hand. It’s anodized a jet black and has a deep glossy finish. Inside is a blackened steel liner lock that holds the blade very securely. The knife is a pillar construction, which I prefer because it makes it easy to clean.
The pocket clip is held in place by 3 allen screws and allows for right handed tip up carry only. Tip up carry is good for these knives but I would have preferred to see an ambidextrous option.
Glass Breaker and Seatbelt Cutter
The glass breaker is a big chunk of steel in the back of the handle. I think this knife would work very well in this capacity although I haven’t had a chance to break any glass yet. As I said before, the knife is heavy so you will have a lot of weight coming down on that point. Also, there is a seat belt / cord cutter. This is handy and helps give the knife it’s rescue designation. The blade on this is like a razor and easily slices through clothing and cord.
Smith and Wesson Border Guard – Final Thoughts
The Border Guard is a fairly ridiculous knife, but given the price point, I wouldn’t completely dismiss it. With aluminum handles and a 440C blade, this is an inexpensive beater blade, and is not something I would recommend to true knife enthusiasts. Fans of the Smith and Wesson brand may also be disappointed to learn that this knife is made in China, and S&W sold the right to use the Smith and Wesson name to Taylor Brands. So this is not actually made by Smith and Wesson.
That said, for less than $20 you do get a functioning folding knife with plenty of bells and whistles. It’s not really my thing, but you may find room for it in your collection.
If you would like to buy a S&W Border Guard, I recommend purchasing it at Amazon.com. Please consider that buying anything through any of the links on this website helps support BladeReviews.com, and keeps the site going. As always, any and all support is greatly appreciated. Thank you very much.
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Hi my name is Osmara. My boyfriend recently bought this life from a friend and wants to use it as protection against gang members who live around our neighborhood. My question is, does the California State Law allow these kind of knives to be carried around in the street? His friend says yes because of the glass breaker that it contains but I’d like to know more. Can you help me? I’d really appreciate it. Thank you.
I have no idea honestly, that would be a question for a California lawyer. My gut reaction is “probably no” though.
David Goodrow says
The S&W knife your inquiring about is absolutely legal to carry anywhere! Just because of it’s name and capabilities doesn’t make it illegal at all! Any folding S&W knife is legal to carry.
What a careless answer.
Laws are laws, also for S&W!
For example in Germany NO folding knife which can be opened with one hand is legal. This, therefore, would not be legal in Germany, no matter the glass breaker.
Santa Claus says
Untrue. Assuming we are talking about the US, it is all on a state-by-state basis. Most states say any blade longer than 4 inches is illegal to without a CCL.
Be smart – every state is different
Kyle N says
I just bought this knife at big 5 on black friday and got such a good deal i bought one to carry and one for my bug out bag and so far i love it i have a small collection of knifes ( working on making it bigger) and i think it my new favorite but anyway thanks for the review it was really good
Glad you like yours, Kyle. My pleasure as always.
John Roy Clark says
how do you close the smith wesson border carry knife. I got it open and have no idea how to close it. can you help?
The knife has a liner lock. Here is a video that shows how to disengage a liner lock (complete with cool techno soundtrack): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WBwWUhF_6d8
Hope this helps.
The blade is actually 7cr17 steel not 440c listed above. Teflon washers aren’t good in my experience. Brass is much better. I would also note that carbide tip glass strikers work much better on automotive glass from personal experience. Not a very good knife in my opinion.
Thank you, Josh.
7cr 17 great but you don’t state which is better, that or the ss?
The Walrus says
Don’t buy S&W knives. These are a poorly made product with the screws stripping easily. If you buy anything S&W, stick to their guns.
In Amazon it says it is 7cr steel.
In S&W website it says nothing.
Can you share your source?
ooops. Sorry, I hadn’t read the other comments saying the same.
Well, I think I will just pass on S&W.
Anthony Mandich says
In my opinion this knife is a piece of garbage. I’m at my ex-girlfriend’s house in her garage gettjng high as heck and we were talking about good weapons for me to take with me on my runs through the gang infested streets of Santa Ana, California in case I am attacked. She offered me the use of this extremely heavy, super stiff, gaudy smoke shop special knife and upon reviewing it I am declining.
It is so heavy and bulky that it makes me want to smash things to show my disdain for this product. It could be the drugs working their magic, making me want to throw this knife into the lake of fire then creep around like Smeagle whispering toxic things like creepy kids whisper but I dont think so.
In conclusion, let’s smash this knife with a sledge hammer and sit around a campfire singing kumbayah and eating girl scout cookies naked until the cows fly to the North Pole.
Hilarious comment. I could not agree more. The BORDER GUARD isn’t up to the task of guarding my ham sandwich, let alone a border.
This thing is a pile of trash. Steel sucks and you can not open it in less than 3 motions. I would return it but I threw the box away because it had a big name on it . Engineering was not thought out. I work at a marina and am an avid sailor. A good knife is important.
Knives with teflon (nylon) washers are crap. Oh, sure, they pop open with a crack, but the washers wear out within six months. I haven’t used this knife, but I have used plenty of others, and I use a knife hard, every day, all day long. Nylon washers are never going to be as good as copper or other types of metal. It’ too bad no one makes a quality knife anymore, it’s all about looks and something called TAC, which is rather meaningless in the real world. People look at a knife, go “Oh cool!” and waste their money. That’s like buying a car for the paintjob without looking at whether the springs and frame are rusted through.