Monthly Archives: January 2017

GEC #13 & #38 Production Spec Updates

A few notes to answer a lot of questions regarding the GEC #13 & #38 knives….

I’ve been asked if the #13 is a single or two spring knife and will they be laser engraved.  The Whittler and the Speaker Jack will both be two spring knives.  The Single blade Clerk will be…a single spring.   The single blade Clerk will have the laser engraving as shown in the GEC mock up.  Handle colors haven’t been determined yet. They’re being doled out to distributors on an allocation basis so I’m not taking any reservations as I have no idea how many I’ll get.

3-13-drawings

The #38 isn’t on any schedule yet.  No production date set yet, no handle colors, no idea when to anticipate them.  Maybe late spring????  The drawing GEC put up was meant to sample the interest and while I don’t doubt it’ll go into production at some point, there are other things coming first.

A couple things to look forward to in the near future are more of the #53’s in different configurations as well as another run of 48’s.  GEC put out an informal survey to distributors and it sounds like there was somewhat of a consensus that those were of interest.  Personally, I would have liked to have seen some more Vipers and some of the big frame 45’s and 46’s.   And even better, how bout more of that Texas Camp Knife in larger quantities!

Trestle Pine Superiors Have Arrived

The Trestle Pine Superiors arrived this afternoon and I’ve just started going through them.  Here’s a sample of some of the ‘exotic’ handles.  There will be a total of 14 different handle materials.  Thirteen wood and some choice Stag.

Trestle Pine Superior
Stag, Masur Birch, Black/Gold Boxelder, Thuya, Clear Boxelder

The Masur Birch (L) and Thuya (R) are two woods I’ve not used before and came out with some stunning figure.  Needless to say, I didn’t do many as I wasn’t sure how they would finish.  Now I know!

Masur Birch (L) Thuya (R)

There are a couple of subtle changes made on this release.  The first are the Brass bolsters on the current run.  I also moved the the nail mark about a 1/4″ closer to the tip to provide a little more leverage.  Most people just pinch the blade between thumb and fore finger to open it, but now you’ll have a little more advantage if you use the nail mark.

First Model top, Current Model Bottom

The new release has a CPM154 blade upgraded from the original 154CM.  I had Queen mark the reverse side of the tang with the CPM154 stamp.

I’m really pleased with the work Queen did on these.  The grind on the blades looks great and the one’s I’ve looked at have a good out of the box edge.  The goal with the Trestle Pine tang stamp has always been a good looking, high quality, every day carry knife and they definitely surpassed the mark!

Personally, I’m anxious to use the CPM154 and compare it to the 154CM.  I’ve been carrying one of the Grand Portage’s since they came out and have really gotten attached to it.  It’s going to be hard to retire it even temporarily.  Tomorrow I’ll get busy listing these in the store.

 

Trestle Pine Endorsement! Mammoth Ivory, Express, Stallions

There’s a whole lot going on this week and it’s only Tuesday!!!   We’re talking Mammoth Ivory, 71 Express and 74 Stallions.   Let’s start with the ‘big’ (for me) news.  A ‘major’ endorsement for the Trestle Pine Superior.

Affirmation that you’ve done something right is always great and it’s REALLY great when it comes from someone you respect.  I got it yesterday.  Had a good conversation going with Ken Daniels yesterday and in the course of the conversation we talked about the Trestle Pine Superiors that are in transit.  Ken said they came through looking really good with some terrific woods (and this is coming from a ‘stag’ fanatic).  He followed up the comment by telling me he was in fact carrying one of the Superiors for an EDC knife and really liked it.  It fit his hand well, liked the easy access to the tall blade and the blade was great for just about any task at hand.  Understand, this wasn’t a paid endorsement (but to be 100% honest with you…. I’m not sure Ken paid for the knife either).

This meant a lot to me not only that it came from Ken, but because the blade/handle combination was received with some skepticism.  It strayed to far from the ‘traditional’ folder design.  A wharncliffe blade in a Copperhead frame?  Old growth wood handles?? Using a 154 series blade instead of 1095 or 440C!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Totally unconventional.  Well, that first release sold out in just a few weeks and most folks loved it.  The next run should be arriving later today or tomorrow.

Next good news is a special run of 40 #99 Executive Jacks with a 1095 Wharncliffe blade finished in Mammoth Ivory is coming in.  I’ve wanted to see more premium handle material on anything for quite a while and was glad this deal came together.  With luck, they’ll start coming through next week.

The next run of  John Henry 71 Express knives is tentatively scheduled to start shipping mid February.  Interest is running high and I know the Black G10 is close to sold out already.

And the last update is in regards to the GEC 74 Stallions.  These have proven to be wildly popular and are selling out quickly.  I increased my orders twice on several handle options and still find it’s not enough.  The Green and Yellow Rose have so far been the runaway most popular but I’m willing to bet the Northfield Jigged Bone is going to be the biggest hit.  Great looking jigging pattern.

 

Trestle Pine Knives, Queen News & Updates

Confirmation came in this morning that the most recent release of the Trestle Pine Superior shipped today.  I’m hoping by mid week next week I’ll have them in hand and start getting them listed.  There are a few minor changes on this release.  The most noticeable will be the brass bolsters and more important (but less obvious) will be the CPM154 blade.

This morning I received the Schatt & Morgan #98 Sleeveboard Whittler in Black Maple and Worm Groove.  That’s not a fracture in the Maple handle but  nice stripe of grain.  These have a very user friendly pull that I’d probably rate at around a 4.

98 S&M Sleeve Board Whittler

The next are some 48 Carpenter’s Whittlers in Elk and Blue Pic Bone.  Nice knife with a much heavier pull.  These have robust springs that result in a pull closer to an 8.  Great work knife.

48 Carpenters Whittler

And the last is a 2 Blade Maroon Bone 69 Barlow.

69 Barlow

Jeff has done a great job at Queen improving the grind on recent releases.   It’s hard not to notice that the edges are much better then in the past.  They’re coming out of the box ready to use (unless your a bit anal like myself and can’t use a knife without putting your own touch on the blade).

I haven’t posted these in the store yet, but wanted to share some pix with you.  Hopefully later today I’ll get them listed.

A quick follow up to my ongoing experiment with the Kydex.  I’m not going into any great detail as there are a load of great how to videos online using Kydex.  All I’ll tell you is that it’s cheap to get set up (under $50) for a few sheets of Kydex, some rivets and screws and a ‘press’.

I heat the Kydex in the oven at around 300 degrees to get it soft to work with.  Two 12″ pieces of plywood hinged together, some high density foam make up the press.  Add a couple of wood clamps and you’re good to go!!  A small heat gun works great to make final forming adjustments.

This is my first project and it’s not done yet.  I need to shape the edges with a sander then attach a belt loop.

The purpose of the screw is for attachment of a firesteel loop.  That’s another project I hope to get to…..soon.  The sheath fits snug enough that I can tip things upside down and shake the hell out of it without unsheathing the knife.

It’s a fun, simple project that won’t stress most anyone’s skill level.  As soon as things slow up a bit, I’m anxious to get back to it and work on a couple other ideas.

S&M 71 Express Update

The first release of S&M 71 Express knives sold out fast, but there is another run in the works!  First, let me share some production info on the first run.

Initially, there were supposed to be a relatively even mix of the Maple and Ironwood.  A number of the Maple handles were lost in production and as a result, there weren’t many built.  I’m going to guess around 25-30.  The stag came out as a bit of an afterthought with just 23 of them built.   I ran out of stag very quickly and am hoping to snag a couple more if at all possible.  No promises.  And speaking of stag, I’ve now heard from two sources that stag is becoming difficult to get once again.

I talked to Ryan yesterday and the next release of the 71 Express will total around 265 pieces.  Should be seeing these in February.  Breakdown of handle materials are proposed as follows:

  • 50  Ironwood
  • 50 Leopard Wood
  • 50 Black G10
  • 50 Red Shockwood
  • 40 Red Acrylic
  • 25 Black G10

I’ve set up a page for early orders and based on the first run, don’t wait if you’re interested.  Another note when you’re ordering is make sure you use a street address for delivery and NOT a box number.  These are shipped UPS and box numbers don’t cut it.  You’ll also notice the current price does include US Shipping.

S&M 71 Express & More

The S&M 71 Express shipped this week and it didn’t disappoint.  It’s a really cool nostalgic take on the old KaBar Grizzly.  And if you can’t handle the $2000+ price for an original, this is a viable option.

I quickly found out it’s a little bit quirky to operate from a modern day push button.  For effective operation you want to get your thumb high up on the bolster.

While using the tip of your index finger to set things in motion.

It has a serious spring in it so it’s not made for the meek.

You’ll notice the gap in the liner/spring area which is the way things have to be to operate.  That’s not a design or manufacturing flaw.

In addition, apparently the design results in the blade lying to the left of center which was consistent in every knife I looked at which also leads me to think it has to do with the design.

Another interesting detail is the center pin on the bottom almost appears to be spun or more accurately, peened and is consistent with all of the knives.  That pin goes all the way through to the other side while the front and rear bottom pins appear to only go through the handle material and liner so I’m assuming their is a strength factor involved.  There is a small amount of side play in most of the knives which disappears when a small amount of pressure is placed on the locking lever from the ‘shield’ side.  All in all it’s a really fascinating old automatic.

Not quite as exciting but well worth mentioning is the arrival of more of the GEC 74 Stallions.  The Spring Green Jigged Bone came in this afternoon, the Gabon Ebony arrived earlier this week and it looks like more handle options are already in transit.

This is kind of a brief update, but I’ve been playing with the 71 Express most of the day and just kind of let things slide!!!

Weekly Update 1.06.17

The first weekly update of the new year….hope this year lasts longer than last year!!!

Today the first of the GEC Northfield 74 Stallion (Non-SFO) knives arrived.  The Northfield Cocobolo is the first out of the chute and they look reallly good.

74 Stallion Cocobolo Wood

Cocobolo is one of those woods that can look really nice or it can be about as plain as plain can be.  All of the knives I received had very consistent coloration with nice contrast.  I did take the time to shoot pix of each individual knife for the store this time as there’s a fair amount of variation and no one likes surprises.

I had a notification that the first of the John Henry 71 Express knives shipped this week.  Not 100% sure of the delivery date but I’m really anxious to check them out.  There’s a possibility I’ll have one or two extras available if you missed out on the initial booking.  Drop me an email if you want to be put on the list for a shot at one.

There’s also going to be a second run coming through with different handle options around the end of February.  Not a clue what we’ll see on that run but I’ll post details as soon as I know for sure.

Not sure if any of you have messed around with Kydex, making sheaths or holsters but I broke down and ordered some Kydex sheets, rivets, screws etc this week.  It’s one of those things I’ve thought about playing around with but just haven’t taken the time to pursue.

What peaked my interest was a CC holster rig I just ordered from Alien Gear.  It’s a modular system with a removable/changeable pouch holding the gun.  Now the interesting thing is that Alien Gear will exchange the pouch if you change guns….no charge for the exchange.

My first thought is they must be over-charging for the rig if they can offer that kind of lifetime exchange deal OR that pouch must be pretty cheap to mold.  A little research and I realize it’s a pretty inexpensive part to build.  Great marketing concept.

This gets me thinking about a Kydex FireSteel holder that can be attached to an existing sheath.  Then I’m realizing a Kydex sheath for the Trestle Pine Buddy would solve the issue of camping/fishing/hiking in the rain with a leather sheath.  All of a sudden I’m overcome with all sorts of projects and possibilities that need exploring.  And the idea of a Kydex sheath for a traditional folder pops into my head.

I was tarping our camper this fall in a light drizzle using paracord to tie the tarp down.  I had my Grand Portage out, laying it on the ground or on the camper as I tied things up.  In the past I’ve done this and have walked off leaving my knife lay.  A number of years ago I cleaned some trout on a remote lake, stuck the knife in a log while I packed up the fillets. Cleaned up, packed up and moved on leaving the knife in the log.  Later that evening I realized my knife wasn’t in my pocket and remembered where I left it.  Luckily, the next day it was still there.

So why not build a simple belt pouch that you could slide a folder into and still easily access it without a lot of fuss.  Better yet, why not design a belt pouch that would allow you to slide the knife in while the blade is still deployed somewhat like a fixed blade sheath?

Probably going to be a while before I get around to trying it, but it’s just too good an idea not to pursue.  There’s so many things you can do with Kydex and it’s relatively inexpensive to experiment with.  If you’ve tried any unique projects with it, let me know.

Otherwise, stay warm wherever you are!  Doesn’t sound like anyone is suffering from excessively high temperatures in the US this week!

 

 

A Few Used Knives Added

In the latest collection I acquired there are a few used knives that I’ve added to the store front.  The used knives can be found…. in the Used Knives category.  How about that.

The knives I’ve listed have been GEC’s that are in near mint condition and in a couple of cases could easily pass for NIB with some polishing of the blades/bolsters.  I bought them as used and am selling them as such.

The reason I bring this up is the condition on them is great and if you’re looking for a good as new EDC knife, it’s a great opportunity.  I don’t think I’ve found one that’s been sharpened and most have still have very good factory edges.

I know there are a few more in the box, and I think most of the ones I’ve listed have sold almost immediately.  There are still a fair number from the lot to get listed so keep an eye on changes in the recently added category.