Problem Fighting Against the Bowie
I've been finding myself in a dilemma lately. I picked up a handful of training knives for the ARMA group here including some small daggers, a rondell, and two bowies. We've been mostly sparring with the rondell and doing bowie versus bowie, but the past few times we've been doing non-bowie versus bowie and a pattern emerges rapidly:
The guy with the bowie picks apart the non-bowie guy most of the time. This usually happens, apparently, because the non-bowie fighter gets immediately in range of the bowie without being able to attack the bowie fighter. I've gotten lucky a few times against the bowie with the rondell, since iron door with a dagger can stop a cut and allow you grab the weapon hand. But by and large the mass and length of the bowie usually leads to the smaller weaponed fighter getting sniped, cut, and stop-thrusted before being able to attack the bowie fighter.
I also noticed a few things about trying to stop a bowie attack too. A smaller dagger can't seem to effectively parry attacks from a bowie. The off-hand can help in binding against the weapon hand so you can grapple it, but this often leads to the bowie fighter simply feinting a bit and then hacking the off-hand. The rondell can counter-thrust\stop-thrust a bowie attack but only two-handed parries with it seem to work consistently.
With all that in mind I'd like to know is if anyone has any experiences of using a smaller weapon (or a rondell) successfully against a bowie, preferably without getting your hands hacked apart in the process. Has anyone had observations contrary to my own, and if so how? A more general question would be how can a fighter with a smaller blade overcome the dangers of fighting against someone with a larger one?