straight knives are designed as elegant alternatives to folding
knives. I use ATS34, BG42, 440C, CPM S30V, CPM 154, and RWL 34,
as well as stainless and carbon Damascus in a variety of patterns
from Bertie Rietveld, Jerry Rados, Daryl Meier, Robert Eggerling,
George Werth, Mike Norris, and Devin Thomas. Finishes for non-Damascus
pieces are usually hand rubbed.
416 stainless steel, or mokume gane from a number of different makers.
Pins are 14K gold. The signature ruby in the ricasso is set in 18K
Handles are usually crafted from fine natural materials such as
mother of pearl and the fossil ivories, as well as rare woods, although
some pieces intended for rigorous use have been fitted with carbon
fiber or Micarta.
Blade and handle
shapes were conceived with consideration for size, comfort, function,
and appearance. All are full-tang design, and even those knives
with Damascus blades are ground from a single piece of bar stock;
no welds are made to lower-grade steels to reduce material costs.
Tangs are tapered to reduce weight, as well as to improve appearance.
A few words
on the sheaths that accompany my straight pocket knives: the concept
is to provide a secure method of holding the knife that keeps it
readily available, as well an attractive look that is in keeping
with the appearance of the knife itself.
particular combination of features on my sheaths is unique to me,
each of the "ideas" came from somewhere else. For example,
I use a rare earth magnet to help retain the blade in the sheath;
an idea I borrowed from Bud Nealy (and for which I thanked him a
couple of years ago), who uses them in his Kydex sheaths.
The clips come
from Matt Conable of William Henry Knives, who uses them on slip-cases
for his folders. I was told that Matt got the idea for the clip
from a sheath intended for pocket-carry of a pen. There is nothing
new under the sun after all, but there is much to be said for availing
one's self of the wisdom and experience of those who have gone before.
To keep the
inside of the clip and the magnet from scratching the knife, I line
the sheath with soft goatskin. The hand-stitched exterior is made
of exotic leather or cowhide. Exotics include ostrich, crocodile,
lizard, frogskin, and sharkskin.
The clip allows
the knife to be attached to the inside of a trouser pocket in much
the same way that many folders are carried. I have developed a preference
for clipping it to the inside of my shirt pocket where it is just
as accessible as a pen or pencil.
The whole package
is designed to fit nicely in a pocket, yet still provide enough
useful blade and handle to slice a bagel or open a carton - they
are, after all, tools- and, at the same time, present an elegant
and non-threatening appearance. There is no reason why tools can't
have some class."
Fly Fishing Expo, Warren, MI March 11-12, 2017
Knife Collectors Club Show, Novi, MI April 29-30, 2017