Things I Love: Great Knifemaking

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We know the guys at Strider well, Duane, the owner is a master metallurgist and the effort he puts into blade making is right in line with the effort we put into eyewear. There are a lot of flamboyant knife makers out there, crazy handles with weird and wild shapes. I understand the value of these, in fact I love many of them, but step back and think about the core purpose of a knife – to cut something. The best possible knife in the world is sharp and stays sharp. Simple? No way, sorry. To stay sharp, it needs to be hard, but if it’s hard, typically it’s brittle, therefore it needs to be ductile, but that makes it difficult for it to be hard… see the problem? Vicious circle. Duane is a master at sourcing these hard to achieve qualities.

Great knife makers are not really known for their shapes, they are known for the quality of their blade. A great blade is like a perfectly balanced car – one that absorbs all the bumps on a rough road but magically has “razor sharp” firm handling on a track. Incredibly hard to achieve and only mastered by a few.

The pictures here are of a piece we co-designed with Strider. It has a ridiculously good (and EXPENSIVE) Damascus steel blade that blends these properties perfectly. For the handle, we brought a little 3 dimensionality to it that is not common in normal handles. The shape is machined out of a 90 layer billet of carbon fiber. The back plate is aerospace titanium. Bells and whistles galore J

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