Monthly Archives: September 2010

More knives added to the Store

I’ve updated the current inventory file again this afternoon.  Added were around 15 knives including some items that were sold out, in particular the 72 mini-lockbacks.  There are also the new 66 River Valley Green.

I tried to make sure that I highlighted (in light blue) not only new releases, but also the knives I added today.  About 20 more 2007, ’08 and 09’s and I’ll have them all in the store!!!

Montana fur trading company

For the hunters and skiins people in the group,. if yiu ever get a chance to visit the Montana Fur Trading Company in Martin City MT, go.  What a great group of hunters hanging around talking and a just a wonderful store full of the greatest Taxidermy.  Some very nice custom made fixed blade but a little pricey on my budget and I think the GEC quality is every bit as good.

Current Inventory Page updated again

If you’ve been watching the older stags on the storefront, you’re aware the in/out of stock status has been changing quickly.  I just updated the Current Inventory page again in an effort to keep things current.  Also, all of the 488110 Antique Goldenrods are gone as well.  I’ll really try to get as many of those limited runs as possible as they’re always popular.

greg

Changes to the “Current Inventory” Page

I’ve made a change on the Current Inventory  page that I hope will help without adding more confusion.  I’ve highlighted the 2007 and 2006 knives in stock in light green.  Now, I say I hope it won’t add create more confusion for the following reason.

In the storefront, I’ve added additional categories by year, 2006. 2007 etc to help you search for knives…. by year.  I have not, however, had time to update all of the store inventory, adding them to the appropriate ‘year’ category.  So, you may be looking for a 2008 73 2nd cut but may not find it by only searching the “Year” category.  Be sure to check the Current Inventory page as well as searching the website by handle material, checking the model categories, etc.. 

If all else fails, drop me an email at greg@tsaknives.com as I have a fair number of knives that aren’t in the store yet and there are knives we may have available that aren’t in our store stock.  I ask you to use email for a couple of reasons.  If you call and I answer the phone, I may be on the road and I’m not good at taking notes and driving, PLUS, with the number of knives I have on hand, there’s no way I’ll be able to tell you if a knife is in stock.  Second, If you didn’t see it on the Current Inventory page, I’ll guarantee you I’m going to have to do some digging.  More then once, I’ve ended a phone conversation by saying ‘..I don’t think I have one..‘, only to do some checking and come up with exactly what someone was looking for.  And finally, I”m embarrased to admit how many scribbled notes get lost in the shuffle on my desktop.  Chris and I  have called each other back 3 and 4 times after we’ve each found the notes we made to each other on previous conversations.

Just finished uploading 2006, 2007 Stags

This morning I added 12 or 15 2006 and 2007 Stag and Burnt stag knives to the storefront.  It’s been a while since I handled one of the 23 2 blade stags and forgot what a chunk of art that knife is!  Lots of material goes into one of them. 

There were also some 488110’s finished in Antique Goldenrod.  There were only 5 of these run and I had them serialized 1/5, 2/5 etc.  Great Eastern did run the 2 blade 48 in the Goldenrod, but these 5 are the only single blade Goldenrod.  These got hit hard and fast and as of a few minutes ago, there was just one left.

I still have a large box of knives (30-40) to add from this lot.  There are 2007’s, 2008’s  and 2009’s.   I’ll get them all up sooner or later, but it’s sure fun going through some of the older knives.

New 89 Executive Whittler is released in Ruby Red Jigged Bone

Here’s the latest coming from Great Eastern cutlery.  These should start shipping this week!! 

(And I thought the 3 blade Executive (Melon) Whittler was dead. )

#890310 Ruby Red Jig Bone

BRAND:                        Tidioute Cutlery

PATTERN #:                 #890310                          

LENGTH:                       4” closed

DESCRIPTION:            Executive Whittler

HANDLE:                       Ruby Red Jig Bone

STEEL:                           1095 Carbon Steel

RELEASE DATE:         September 29, 2010

Some New Old Stock just listed

I started uploading some of the 2007 and 2008 knives this afternoon.  There are some really hard to find knives in this lot.  The #53 Genuine Stags were part of a run of just 37 knives in 2007.  One feature I just started is I’ve classified the new additions by year.  Understand that not all of the older knives I have on hand are classified yet, that’s gonna take some time.  But going forward, I’ll try to get them in the right year class.

Almost 100 ~ 2006, 2007’s, 2008’s, and Orphan Knives are on the way!

Coming in starting next week is a large lot of Great Eastern knives I acquired that will include everything from 2006, 2007 & 2008 Genuine Stags, Burnt Stags, some hard to find low production knives and a great group of Orphan Knives from 2010.   Over 30 of the Stags will be 2006 & 2007’s.  A lot of the knives will be single’s. 

If you like the rare and unusual, I’ll have 5 sets of Tidioute #48 single blades serialized 1 of 5, etc one in Antique Goldenrod (never run on the single blades) and the other Blood Red (normally reserved for the Northfields).  There are also a couple other pretty interesting OK” 48’s in the lot.

As much as I’d like to give you prices on all of these, I can’t yet.  I don’t have firmprices and it’ll take a few days to sort through everything and get them in the store. 

Great Eastern Knives, What’s been hot and not so hot….

Continuing this discussion I remind everyone again, the following is info shared from my personal experience and not necessarily a reflection of GEC sales nationwide.  Agree or disagree, you’re encouraged to join in the discussion.

Let’s talk about handle material first.  Without a doubt, probably one of the most erratic selling handle materials for me has been the acrylic/perylic handled knives.  Only a few acrylic offerings were available in 2007 but the numbers have climbed ever since.  In 2008 GEC ran a number of interesting acrylic handled 25’s for the open house with a lot of them limited to just 1 or 2 pieces per handle material.  An assortment  of Northfield 73 and 23 Factory Test Production Run knives were also released in extremely limited quantities.  Since then, we’ve seen more of the serialized runs come through.  Pictured is a 4 blade Congress Tiger Lily, one of just two made in 2010. 

I think the swings in interest in the acrylics are due to a couple of issues.  The first of which is obviously the color combination and pattern of the material.  Without a doubt, the color that got kicked around the most was the “Dead Skunk”.  Not unlike any other handle material, everyone was looking for that perfect balance of colors.  The problem was, unlike stag or jigged bone, the dramatic color swings from red to black to white were a whole lot more obvious then a subtle shift in a dyed bone. Getting the right balance isn’t always easy in any of the acrylic patterns.

The second issue is the fact that acrylic isn’t a natural material.  While there are collectors only interested in stag or bone or buffalo horn, etc, there’s never been a large contingency of collectors just focusing on acrylics.  To a certain degree I think this limited interest is based on a concern collectors have of the acrylics falsely based on past experience and stories about some of the older celluloids that dissolved in front of our eyes.  While a lot of the problems associated with the older celluloids have foundation, the new acrylic/perylics can’t be compared to them.   Totally different characteristics in the two products.

The wood handles have been somewhat of a paradox.  Cocobolo and Snakewood are the hot wood products for me.  Bubinga and Bocote are excellent movers and a lot of credit goes to the much beloved “Christine” for their popularity.  A big surprise, however, has been the mixed reaction to the American Wormy Chestnut and Curly Maple.  Both are great looking and the Curly Maple is just outstanding.  The biggest problem is getting a photo to show the ‘depth’ of color, just like some of the acrylics.

Like the acrylics, I think some of the interest in the wood handles is driven by the fact a lot of collectors don’t consider it a ‘traditional’ handle material even though it’s been around for years. 

Then  there’s what I’ll refer to (for the sake of this article) as ‘exotics’, Caribou, Mammoth Ivory, Mother of Pearl, etc.  Interest is typically high for these, but the number of buyers are limited.  This is particularly true of the Mammoth Ivory primarily due to cost. So far, we’ve only seen one run of the Mammoth Ivory and the numbers were small with, I believe, only around 50 total made in the different patterns.  We’ve only seen a handful of Caribou and those have gone fast. 

Next is the Genuine Stag, Burnt Stag, American Elk and Primitive Bone.  These probably draw the most attention of the new releases.  Anytime a new pattern is announced one of the first questions I hear is: “when is the Genuine Stag going to be released”.  There aren’t many if any respectable knife makers out there that don’t offer a stag.  The Primitive bone is unique in that you’ll see a lot of variation with some having gorgeous natural fractures.  So while we’re all aware of the stags and what they look like, the photo of this Easy Open 25 is a good example of what can get overlooked in materials such as the American Elk.

Finally, the biggest seller bar none are the bone handles for some very good reasons.  Bone is as traditional as it can get for a handle material dating back to the days when are relatives crawled out of the caves.  Great things can be done to colorize it, it wears excellent, and above all, it’s an affordable, good looking end product.  As a result, the bone is and no doubt always will be the most popular handle material. 

On the other end of the spectrum, the acrylics can be some of the most challenging to sell.  I qualify that with a ‘can be’ as there are some color combo’s that have been knockouts.  In fact, one that I totally forgot about was the Copper Snake.  Outstanding!

The Stags and Primitives basically sell themselves.  They probably draw more attention then the bone handles, but due to the high vloume of bone in comparison, based on numbers, they’re right behind the bone. 

Most of the bone is well received, but every now and then a color comes through that just doesn’t seem to catch everyone’s attention.  An example that comes to mind is the Midnite Jigged Bone.  It was so dark that it just doesn’t have a lot of character.  To the right of it is a Black Cherry released in 2008 and has been slow to move.  The Black Cherry puzzles me as it’s a great color, similar to some of the to some of the other darker reds we’ve seen.  It’s either and example of a knife that’s been overlooked or the color/jigging/knife pattern combination wasn’t just right.  Can’t explain it.

So what’s really hot???  It is and probably always will be the Genuine Stag.  Passion can run high with Genuine Stag collectors and if you want to get a Genuine Stag collectors blood pressure up, just tell him the only decent handle material you’ll consider is a Genuine Micarta.

What’s not hot?  That’s a lot tougher and it varies from day to day.  As I said early on, the acrylics can pose the greatest challenges.  The Acrylics have to be the right color on the right pattern.  The interesting thing about the Acrylics is that sometimes the items that get ignored today turn into the hot commodity tomorrow.  I’ve had knives sit for months with zero interest and suddenly, they’re in demand.  The Bronco Charlie’s were a great example.  I had a fairly large number of them that sat for the longest time and the interest suddenly took off. 

Where does bone fall in the ranks?  It can fall into the hot or not group.  It seems like the popularity of the color can be driven by the pattern of knife it’s on.  Fuschia might not work on a Sunfish, but it went over great on the 73’s. 

Right or wrong, that’s how I see it. 

Next time around, I’ll share what I’ve seen happen to popularity of some of the different patterns.