Monthly Archives: July 2014

Schatt & Morgan Stag Canoe and GEC Ebony Wood Boys Knives

Finally got around to listing the latest short run released by Queen Cutlery.  They’ve made a limited run of 100 pieces of their 64 Canoe finished in some exceptionally nice looking Stag.  Nicely finished knife coming in under a hundred bucks.

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GEC shipped out some more of the One Armed Opening Boys Knives finished in Ebony (?) Wood.

DSCN0075I have a question mark as I’ve not run across Ebony this predominantly brown in color.  Typically, I might mention the Ebony is Black with light streaks of Brown.  On this lot… more like Brown with some stripes of Black.

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Another curiosity I came across is a couple of the knives came with buttons inside the tube and can be pinned to a cap or lapel.   Only a couple of knives had them so not sure if this is just an over-site that they weren’t included with all of the 15’s or if GEC is randomly including them.  IF you need/want/expected one with your 15 and didn’t get one, contact GEC.

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Marble’s Safety Hatchet in stock!

All the years I’ve spent outdoors fishing, camping and hunting, the one item I’ve usually carried along has been a short handled axe or hatchet.  They’re so handy for cutting up firewood, splitting wood, driving in tent stakes and field dressing big game.  But, invariably, the sheath is misplaced within a matter of months.  I’ve designed a couple of effective sheaths made from cardboard and duct tape or better yet (and water resistant) just plain duct tape!

Many years ago I remember a friend having a safety hatchet and I thought it was the slickest thing I’d come across in a while.  For whatever reason, I never picked one up.  Thought about it every time I lost the sheath on my most current axe/hatchet, but just never got around to it.  Well, I recently had special order come through for one of the Marble’s Safety Hatchets and thought, now is the time!

Marble's Safety Hatchet The current hatchets are being made overseas and I’m happy to say the quality appears excellent.  Handles are securely attached and finished, the safety cover has a good solid spring and the finish on the hatchet head far exceeded my expectations with an excellent edge.

There are two versions.  The M5 is the more expensive version finished with an American Hickory handle and just slightly smaller and lighter then the M6 (below) which has a Hardwood handle.  DSCN0026For those of you that have never used one, the metal guard conveniently folds back into the handle when using the hatchet.  It’s spring loaded to keep it securely open or closed.

DSCN0028Other than the guard which makes the Safety Hatchet safe to carry, the 12″ OAL is compact enough to easily tuck under the seat of your vehicle, attach to your pack or even stuff in your pack.  Camping, hunting or just carrying in your vehicle, it’s a practical tool to have close by.  And finally, I’ve got one!!!

 

Fallkniven Gentleman’s Knife

A couple more really neat additions go in the store this morning!  The first is the Fallkniven Gentleman’s Knife.  It’s great when form and function come together in a pocket knife and, well here it is!

Fallkniven Gentleman's Knife

Out of the wood presentation box, the first thing you notice are the traditional lines and flat out good looks of the Cocobolo Handle.  DSCN0031

The profile is relatively thin for a knife measuring 7″ open with a 3″ blade.   One of the interesting features is the long pull.  Practical and often necessary for opening some of the traditional slipjoints with stiff springs.  On the Gentleman’s Knife, you can adjust the tension and resulting amount of effort required to deploy the blade.  As a result, you can literally adjust it to the point that it can be opened with the flick of a wrist with no sideplay in the blade or snug it down to your personal preference.  What’s noticeable in either situation is the absolutely butter smooth opening of the knife.  No catches, not grating, no high point you need to pass by on opening.  Incredibly smooth with no need for lubrication!  DSCN0033

According to the Fallkniven website, they put a lot of consideration into the design of the Gentleman’s Knife and one of the noteworthy features is the lock up and wide open spaces.  You can see in the photo the locking surface on the blade is cut at a slight bevel for an incredibly secure lockup that functions effortlessly on opening or closing.  They also left plenty of room for debris to fall free without causing a problem with the lockup.DSCN0034

For everyone that has an issue with ‘gaps’, here’s an example of gaps that make all the sense in the world.  With the wide open spaces it’s incredibly easy to flush out any gunk and debris that might accumulate after hard use in nasty places.  Just hold it under a faucet of warm running water and let things flush out.  There’s few things more frustrating then a linerlock that won’t function due to a build up of grime after cleaning a critter or just working in a dirty environment.  DSCN0035

Fallkniven has been a leader in the use of laminated steels and from personal experience, they’re putting out an incredible line of products.  I’ve used the A1 with the VG10 laminated blade,  the U2 with the newer Super Gold Powdered Steel and have every intention of trying out one of their knives with the Cobalt Steel used in the Gentleman’s Knife.  So far I’ve been very pleased with their knives and just have a hankering to drop one of these in my pocket.

Sorry for the edits ….

I’ve had kind of an unwritten rule that should be reviewed.

I try to avoid mentioning or having anyone specifically name another distributor or custom  SFO customers name on the blog.  There’s a number of reasons I discourage it,  but suffice it to say,  I’m just trying not to irritate anyone anymore than I already do.  I recently did just  that and am still trying to figure out how I did it!!  I really try to focus on the manufacturers rather than other distributors in association with any of the SFO’s they might run.  I’ve definitely got some opinions on the SFO’s and came embarrassingly close to having my name associated with one of my own!

Recently I edited a couple of posts and deleted names only because I didn’t want to advertise for someone else.  Nothing wrong with the comments,  but….gotta try to be at least a little bit consistent!

Fallkniven U2 & PSK in stock, GEC 15’s & New Pocket Strop

Lotsa new stuff showed up yesterday and finally getting around to listing it.  First item that I know Dave’s been waiting on was the Fallkniven U2.  I’ve been using mine for a couple of weeks and I have nothing but praise for it.   Their Super Gold Powdered Steel is all it claims to be.  Edge retention is outstanding in a sub $90 knife.

IMG_0212 I’ll also be adding the Falkniven Gentlemans’ knife a little later today, but it is another gem of a knife.

The second neat item is a six inch Pocket Strop.

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I’ve carried the traditional belt strop and also a block style strop, but for field use, this takes the prize.  Slightly over 1/2″ thick, you have two leather covered sides that can be dressed with two different grits of honing compound.

IMG_0300In fact, when you place your order you’ll have the option of getting it ‘pre-loaded’ with a choice of three different compounds at no additional charge.  I tried one out on my U2 and it works great.

The last item for this morning were the latest GEC 15’s in Ebony Wood.  These seem to be kind of dribbling out between SFO’s.  Nice little knives.

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#15A GEC One Arm Opening Knives Start to Arrive

We saw a series of the One Arm Opening Knives a while back from GEC and this is their latest release.  More handle materials are coming and there’s both a single and two blade option available in 1095 steel.

IMG_0280The concept is pretty simple.  Just catch the tip of the blade on a solid surface and pry it open.

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Surprisingly, all of the one arm opening knives I’ve handled from both GEC and Queen are actually pretty pocket friendly.  When I first saw and felt the relatively sharp tip I assumed it could be a real pocket snagger.  Actually…. not so much.

It’s an interesting pattern that probably has the most appeal to the collector, but nonetheless, it does have a certain practicality about it.  Based on the #15 Boys Knife frame, the specs are consistent with the knives that have come before it.

  • OAL Closed: 3 1/2″
  • Blade length Bolster to Tip:  2 11/16
  • 1095 Blades and SS Liners
  • 1.8 Oz (Single Blade)

New GEC Hunting Pak coming

Details are still a bit sketchy to me but my understanding is the sheath tooling that Great Eastern is showing on the website is part of a new Hunting Pak they’ll be releasing in the near future.  There will be a ‘double’ sheath to hold 2 fixed blade knives that will be offered and also the traditional single sheath if you’re just interested in one of the knives rather the the complete “Hunting Pak”.

I’ve seen combo packages wherein a sheath was constructed to hold a fixed blade knife and a sharpening stone.  I’ve also seen the occasional sheath with a fixed blade and a pouch for a folder.  Even a hatchet and knife combo.  But I can’t say I’ve ever encountered a double fixed blade package.

The most curious/interesting thing about this offering are the blade options being offered.   A slim muskrat/clip style blade (I would assume similar to that found on the Ben Hogans).  A  more traditional drop point.  A Sheepsfoot blade.  AND the Bird/Gut Hook as presented on the recent #66 Woodcock.   All fixed blades, not folders.  During my conversation with Chris I asked multiple times if this was correct and I was assured multiple times it was.  As I recall the blades would all be in the 3″ range.

As a ‘retired’ hunter, I find the blade choices a bit odd.  I’m sure it’s just me so feel free to jump in at anytime!  The Drop Point makes a lot of sense for either hunting or just normal bushcraft  field use.  A 3″ Sheepsfoot in a fixed blade format seems a bit odd for a belt knife.  The slim Clip/Muskrat sounds like a practical Bird and Trout knife.  The Bird/Gut hook in a fixed ‘blade’ configuration is a bit, should we say….unusual?  I have a feeling they’re using up blades from the run of Woodcocks, but to put them on a fixed frame?  That could be a harder sell then the Hoof Picks.

When I was regularly spending 2-3 months in the field hunting and fishing every year, I found I tended to try and travel light as I covered a lot of ground particularly hunting upland birds.  Quail hunting, it was typical to have a good folder in my pocket and I even carried one with a bird hook for several seasons.  Fishing, a 3-4″ drop point and a pocket knife.  Even deer hunting I usually limited myself to a decent larger frame folder for gutting and smaller pocket folder for the odd jobs.  For bigger game, a caper and a good drop point make sense.

For just camping or spending a few days in the woods, obviously the bird hook would be impractical other than using it as a button hook OR POSSIBLY….. lifting a kettle with a bail off the fire..hmmmm…..  The Sheepsfoot, maybe in the camp cook kit.  The drop point and slim muskrat clip, they make sense.  I do like the option of being able to choose which knives will go in the Hunting Pak but I’m having a problem visualizing strapping on a two knife sheath and heading off.

Kind of like the conceal carry concept, I tend to try and be a bit subtle about my appearance when I’m out and about.   A ‘petite’ fella like me strapping on my 45 and a double knife setup under my belly, wearing my camo cap,  chewing on a cigar with couple days stubble  just doesn’t cut it anymore among polite company.  Kinda conjures up images from the movie Southern Comfort or Deliverance more then Rambo.

Anyway…..

I really hope they’ve put some serious thought into the sheath design and with two knives, it sure would be nice if it had provisions for carrying a stone or at least a fire steel.  Also, for packing two knives, the sheath is going to have to be tougher than nails and bullet proof.  Dave can probably chime in on this, but two knives in a single sheath can put a lot of unique strains on the seams and stitching.   The carry / comfort factor is also going to come into play.   And the one size fits all concept for the four different blade configurations is a pretty big design challenge for someone!

I’m just really curious what the rest of you think and share your level of interest in these options.  Personally, as I told Chris, of all the things I’d hoped to see coming from GEC this year, this wasn’t really on my list but, maybe this will be a winner!

Everybody likes a bargain

I was just uploading some new/old stock in the store and realized there are some great bargains that are getting overlooked and some opportunities missed.   Every now and then, I’ll  see items that puzzle me as to why no one has picked up on them.  What really stood out this morning are the number of Genuine and older Natural Stag GEC’s that are available.  Not just my inventory, but around the internet.

One of the reasons I’m surprised so many are still offered for sale is the fact that rarely does GEC use “Genuine” stag anymore.  Most of the releases the past couple of years have been the “Natural”  or “Burnt” stag.    Genuine is cut from the ’round’ usually resulting in a better quality or match side to side while the Natural comes from the slabs (supposedly unburnt) and Burnt is torched to enhance the color.

When we first saw the Natural come out in 2011, the 530411 Natural Stags were actually cheaper then the same knife in Burnt Stag.  Today, the Natural Stag is considerably more expensive then Burnt.  I’m guessing they saw the consumer accept the Natural over Genuine without any problem so the prices quickly crept up but was kept below pricing for Genuine.  Considering the Genuine Stag is infrequently run anymore, it would seem that would enhance the collectibility and demand.

It’s always interesting to try and figure out the trends in this business, but …..don’t think I’ll live long enough to do it!  Always seems about the time you see a trend shaping up, the next trend is coming at you.  For the collector it always comes back to collecting what you like and forget about appreciation.  If prices drop or rise, it doesn’t matter, but there are still deals to be found!

Visit the iKC site

I’m assuming all of you are familiar with the iKC website by now.   If you’re not, check it out.  Jan’s been a good friend going back to the early days of TSA Knives and does a bang up job of keeping things under control since she took over the iKnife Collector site.  Every now and then we’ll collaborate on a scheme and stay in contact as to what’s going on.

While I tend to use the TSAK Blog to air my own opinions, the iKC site is a bit more democratic encouraging actual ‘discussion’.  Not that I don’t encourage conversation or at least try to.

At any rate, I’ve added a link at the top of the blog to take you right over to iKC.   So if you stop here first, when you’re done, click on the link and visit the iKC crew!!