I haven’t sold many knives on eBay in the last couple of years but decided I’d give it another try. Last time I tried working with them they had all kinds of filters that if you tried to list a knife with “Ivory Micarta” handles, they’d delete the listing thinking you were trying to sell Elephant Ivory (which eBay has a problem with). They also banned the sale of pistol magazines for a year or so which really mixed things up for me. But….I’ll try them again, particularly for some of the more unique pieces. Speaking of which…..
This morning I put up 2 nice collectibles if you’re interested. The first is a Copperhead Linerlock in Pearl with a rather unique etch commemorating a 2005 reunion of the Marine Raiders. Not sure if this was just a sample knife or if Queen actually ran it for a group. You can check it out here. There is also a neat looking Prototype S&M Doctors knife with Coral handles as well as a couple of other Prototypes I added yesterday.
I’ll try to remember to let you know when I add some of these items to eBay as I don’t’ like to list them in both the TSA Knives store and eBay.
A couple of weeks ago I finished up a session using one of Queens Copperheads and while I enjoyed using it, the pattern isn’t/wasn’t my first choice. Nice knife but it just didn’t quite fit the bill. On all of the Copperheads I’ve handled, the angle of the blade just doesn’t feel in synch with the handle.
Well, did’ja ever have one of those moments of dejavu? Something just feels so familiar you’re sure you’ve been there and done that before? Well, I’ve been having one of those ‘moments’ for the last week or two. After using the Copperhead I picked up one of Queens #48 Whittlers with Curly Zebra Wood handles and have been putting it through the paces for a week or two. And do I like love it!!!
I’ll admit before I put the Whittler to work, it went to the sharpening stone. That first moment of dejavu came when I was reminded how tough D2 steel is. If you’re used to only maintaining 1095 or even 440C, all I can tell you is that D2 is a different material when it comes to tough. The most difficult part of sharpening most any D2 (personally) is bringing that initial edge up until you have that fine wire you can hone off. It seems like it takes forever to get that wire developed. Once you’re there, not a problem. A few of you might cringe at the thought, but I start with a coarse diamond stone for the quickest result. Get that initial edge worked up, switch to a medium and then a fine stone, then finish it on a leather strop. Take your time, use a little pressure, get a second cup of coffee and you will end up with one fine razor edge.
During the sharpening process, I handled it enough to notice it felt a lot like an old Schrade small stockman ‘I used to have’. Great blade combination, perfect size to comfortably fit in a pocket but still big enough to let you get a good grip on the handle.
While most of the ‘work’ consisted of the usual cardboard and fiber tape work, I had a miserable rewiring project on the pontoon over the weekend.
Now I’ll start by admitting I did use a pair of side cutters to remove the old rats nest of wiring. But once I got into replacing things, the Whittler cut everything from carpeting, old electrical connectors, wood decking, plastic wire ties to insulation off the new wire. Not sure how you cut through that insulation, but I’ll typically roll the wire back and forth across the knife blade until it cuts through to the copper. Then, I’ll use the sharp edge to push the insulation off the end of the wire. In other words, it’s not a real ‘sharp blade’ friendly operation. Oh yeah, forgot about scraping off the battery terminal.
So how’d the knife hold up??? Better than my fingers.
After a week and a half of what I’d consider hard use for a knife this size, I could not believe how well the edge held up on the blades. The coping blade took the bulk of the abuse and it was easily capable of shredding a cardboard box with smooth cuts. About 3 passes on a fine stone and a final hone on the strop and it was back to hair shaving sharp.
I’ve always been a great fan of the A2 from Bark River which I think is a bit easier to work. The D2 is more stain resistant and I feel it will hold an edge longer than the A2. I’ve heard comments that D2 can be brittle, I’ve never found it any more prone to chipping than any other quality steel. Is D2 more stain resistant than 1095? I sure think so. Is D2 initially harder to sharpen than 1095? Yup. Is it worth it? Absolutely. Is an edge harder to maintain on the D2? No way, but like any knife, stay on top of things and it’ll pay off in the end.
I’m starting to make a little progress going through the Proto’s I picked up recently. It’s been fun because I may find 3 or 4 knives that I assumed were all the same, only to open them up to find out their all different. Good case in point were 4 #68 Doctors Knives. I glanced in the first two boxes, saw they were both red and ……yup assumed all four were identical. Wrong! There’s a single blade and a two blade (spatula) in red acrylic as well as a similar pair in Delrin.
The really nice discoveries were a pair of #40 Schatt & Morgan Gunstock Stags. Incredibly nicely colored stag on both knives but no marks on either knife other than the Prototype Blade etch on one and the second one has a shield “LTD Edition”.
There’s also some nice detailing on the liners.
And, I’m finding some very cool handle materials.
As well as some interesting patterns.
There’s even a few Robeson’s / Mastercraft Prototype knives made by Queen. Here’s a real gem.
I hope everyone takes a minute out of their day on Monday to remember all of those that have served to protect our nation. While Memorial Day was set aside to specifically remember those service men and women that have either made the ultimate sacrifice in combat or have since passed on, I think we all agree it’s only appropriate to honor those living and those still serving as well. Whether you celebrate with a family picnic, a local parade, a visit to the cemetery or just a quiet day at home, take a moment to reflect on those fallen that made whatever you’re doing possible. They paid a high price for your freedom.
For a number of years, I’ve had a Memorial Day auction with the proceeds going to the Wounded Warrior Project. Every year there’s another major catastrophe such as the recent horrific tornado’s in Oklahoma that result in a call for donations to all kinds of very worthwhile organizations. A lot of people are financially strained while the calls for donations continue to grow. Everyone has to make their own choices as to where their dollars go and it’s impossible to support every good cause that comes along. So for now, I know the pressure’s on for all of us to make a ‘donation’ to a good cause.
My wife’s job at the VA Hospital has raised my awareness of the needs many of our veterans have. The lack of visible scars or missing limbs doesn’t necessarily mean our vets are returning home without major ‘disabilities’. Sometimes those invisible injuries are more debilitating then the visible ones. The WWP does a lot of great things to help these veterans try to return to a normal life.
Rather than having an auction right now, TSA Knives is making a private donation to the Wounded Warrior Project. I encourage all of you to try and give a little back. Be it the Wounded Warrior Project, Red Cross, Salvation Army or a local charity. While we honor the fallen, let’s not forget the living. The need is always there. Make this Memorial Day even more memorable by helping someone out.
I added a few of the Queen and a couple of the Schatt & Morgan prototypes to the store front this morning. Figured I’d best offer up a couple of explanations before the emails start flowing in.
Queen runs Prototype knives as well as sample knives for projects or proposed new releases like any other company. Some never get to market while others might. While it’s not uncommon for up to 6 or 7 knives to be made, they might carry different handle materials or there may be several of the same pattern made up for review.
Some of the knives I picked up go back to the 90’s and possibly earlier. MOST don’t have any indication as to what the handle material is and in the cases of the wood in particular, this makes life interesting. A couple of those were listed this morning and while I have a pretty good idea what they are, no way am I going to say the handle material is X only to have someone say, no it’s Y. I can’t verify it. An exception was the Dymondwood hunter which I’ll say is Dymondwood (or similar) with 95% certainty. All of the knives are new, in the box, unsharpened, etc, etc.
It’s a great collection of collectibles and at the rate I’m going…..it’s gonna take forever to get through them all. Just for a bit of a tease, here’s a cool set that I’m not sure I’ll part with. The only problem is if I keep them, I don’t think I can resist carrying them.
Think there’s anything interesting in this pile????? You better believe it! Gonna take a while to get through them but if you like rare, one of a kind, prototype only, etc you’re gonna like some of these.
Had an email exchange with Dave at Knife Leather Traditions and he’s going to wind down operations. Dave’s working on plans for the adventure of a life time and sheath making isn’t going to be possible during that period. Beyond that, we’ll have to wait and see.
Dave’s made a lot of customers happy (me included) with one of the very best custom made leather sheaths available. His creations are time consuming and I know for fact, he makes them because he loves doing it, not because he’s getting rich!! I’ve had chats with him in the past about getting automated equipment or contracting some of the work out and let’s just say, that ain’t gonna happen. If you own one of Dave’s sheaths, consider yourself lucky to own a limited production, high quality piece of American craftsmanship.
IF you’ve been thinking of picking up one of his sheaths, now is the time to do it. I’ll continue to take orders for the sheaths listed in the store through the latter part of June. Around the end of June I’ll be taking them down from the store listing and then…..?
I listed a couple of unique Queen Lockback Mountain Men knives this morning. They’re Prototypes that were made with different colored Micarta handle material. My understanding is there were only a handful of these made. The knives that went in the store are Camel, Black and Burgundy Micarta. The Camel and Burgundy have high polished D2 blades while the Black was finished with a satin finish. Great looking knives for the collector OR user!
In addition to these, I’m really happy to tell you there are more sample / prototype Queen and Schatt & Morgans coming. LOTS more. I was lucky to recently buy a collection of close to 150 Queen/Schatt & Morgans, a number of which never went into production. My understanding is there are more than a few surprises in the lot. It’s always interesting to buy a collection like this sight/unseen and I have a feeling this group will be more interesting than most! I hope to see them later this week and will keep you informed!
I listed around 25 older (2009-11) Proto’s in the store this afternoon and I came across I knife I don’t recall seeing before. It’s a 531310 in Jig Green Bone, Northfield Tang Stamp and no shield. It’s a super light colored green bone. It kinda reminds me of the green tea. Anyone remember this one?
Congratulations and best wishes to Jan on her appointment to the National Knife Museum’s Board of Directors! To those of you that know Jan personally or through iKC know Jan’s selflessly gone above and beyond to promote knife collecting and the cutlery industry in general. It’s terrific to see someone that dedicated to the ’cause’ to fill a spot like this!!!!