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Blade November 2020

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BLADE magazine is the world’s #1 knife publication, covering all aspects of the industry: knifemaking, how-to’s, collecting, legislation and knife rights, and much more. Inside each issue you’ll find: Coverage of the hottest and most collectible handmade knives and their values Complete listings of the industry's most important shows and events Knife collecting tips from the experts The most up-to-date knife legislation info

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United States
Caribou Media, LLC
SPECIAL: Get 40% OFF with code: JOY40
13 Issues

in this issue

3 min.
readers respond

The Joy of Knifemaking Hobby: an activity or interest pursued for pleasure or relaxation and not as a main occupation. I am a hobbyist knifemaker. I enjoy making knives but I never sell them. I seldom get stressed. I never have deadlines. I never have accounting, billing, collection, tax and business problems. I don’t have a waiting list. I make knives for the joy of making knives. I make knives for pleasure and relaxation, and to create beautiful things. During my productive years, I worked in public education and as a minister. I never made anything out of steel. I have always loved knives but never contemplated making one with my hands. A few years ago as I prepared to retire, I met a man who made knives. I asked if I could come…

1 min.
cover story

“The customer wanted a Western-themed knife,” ABS master smith Rick Dunkerley said of the special canister-steel edition of his sole-authorship Model 35 folder, “so I made a cowboy riding a bucking horse as the main feature of the damascus.” The cowboy and horse are pure nickel surrounded by 15N20 nickel-alloy steel. Rick created the cactus desert scene separately from nickel, 1084 powder and 4800E powder. Once he forge-welded and drew the elements down, he combined them to create the cowboy riding the bucking horse in the desert. Respective blade and closed lengths: 3 and 7.25 inches. The insets in the picture-frame handle are 18k gold and the rope and barbedwire inlays are 24k gold. The insets have bright cut engraving and the thumb stud holds a diamond set in 18k gold. In…

3 min.
pardon my appendage

The so-called cancel culture that’s plagued our nation for some time now has somehow managed to overlook our beloved knife community—at least so far. Of course, this is not to say that the “woke mob” hasn’t attacked a number of personages revered not only worldwide but in the knife community as well, such as presidents George Washington and Abraham Lincoln, both of whom carried knives of various types, including some really cool pocketknives that have been featured in BLADE®. In fact, some knifemakers, including Ernest Emerson through his Emerson Knives, Inc., and ABS master smith Jerry Fisk, have built and sold knives with handles made of wood taken from the trees on Washington’s Mount Vernon estate. Many other presidents have connections to knives as well, but, for now, their statues or…

10 min.
a blade in the can

Editor’s note: Mike Crenshaw was the impetus for this short modern history of canister steel. He got the ball rolling by gathering information on the early days of canister steel, information that included the contributions of ABS master smith Steve Schwarzer, Daryl Meier, Gary Runyon and others, including ABS master smith Hank Knickmeyer. Firing the forge and melding metals into a cohesive alloy is a methodology that stretches back millennia. Blade steel was one of the methodology’s primary products, even as the process evolved to include the most primitive of mosaic patterns and images emerging from the steel itself. One significant milestone occurred in the 1700s when Frenchman Jean Francois Clouet produced the word “Liberté”— French for Liberty—on the face of a blade. The word was not etched on the blade, it…

1 min.
the knife i carry

“ I carry my father’s KA-BAR everywhere it is practical and legal to do so. He carried it for years when deer hunting in the Adirondack Mountains of northern New York state. I remember frequently asking to see it when I was growing up, and listening to his stories from deer camp. I think it is these fond memories I have and the sentimental attachment that make it my favorite.” Robert Gutknecht, Madison Heights, Virginia My EDC is a Case jigged-bone trapper I’ve had for years. I use it for all the standard stuff—peeling apples, whittling, cleaning my fingernails, cutting open various packages and so on. It’s a trusty tool.” Paul Kocina, a letter via e-mail “I carry one of the new Gerber Asada pocket cleavers. I like the idea of having a folding…

6 min.
intermediate forging

It’s been said there’s nothing new under the sun. I might add that new ideas in knifemaking are rare. I do not claim the technique I am about to share is new because that could start the story off on the wrong foot. On the other hand, I will say I have not seen it done in the context of making knife parts. Comparisons can be drawn to particular cultural techniques, and I encourage that in the name of inspiration. Speaking of, that will be the purpose of this discussion—inspiration. I have been fortunate to have had several sources of inspiration, not the least of which is my time and training in historic blacksmithing. One of the guiding principles of the early blacksmith was practicality. You will end up being the…