I received the Rust Red GEC 14 shipment this week. We’ve seen numerous iterations of the GEC 14 before and based on the huge quantity of them that GEC sold through SFO’s, they’re obviously really popular with collectors. It’s a neat little knife but it just doesn’t excite me. The problem is the size.
I understand the moniker is “Boys Knife” and that’s the perfect name. For someone with a smaller hand it’s a great choice. When I pick it up, I can almost lose it in my somewhat large hand.
To use it for anything other then occasionally opening an envelope or cutting tape, it’s just not comfortable for me to use. It falls nicely into your pocket and isn’t much more obtrusive there than a key ring with a couple of keys. For me to use it for some serious cutting verges on dangerous.
If I try to get a serious purchase on that short, slim handle, it’s pretty easy for me to end up with my index finger in the ‘danger zone’. Like the 25 Barlow, it’s a great collectible but not something I would choose for an EDC unless I used my knife primarily in the office. Cutting heavy cord, pruning a shrub, trimming dry wall, wire stripping… not my first choice.
Over the years in this business I’ve been lucky enough to meet a handful of people with a vast knowledge of the knife industry in general. The wonderful thing is, a few of them have been kind enough to gently tell me (from time to time) that I don’t know what the hell I’m talking about. I’m not particularly shy about sharing my opinions on things and incredibly, I’m not always right. In the past, I’ve encouraged readers to correct me if I’m wrong or if you just disagree with me. I value that kind of input.
I had a conversation recently with one of these ‘educators’ with a vast knowledge of the knife industry. His background in cutlery covers building knives as a cutler, collecting, repairing, historical knowledge, etc. He has some great contacts in the knife world and access to all kinds of historical ‘stuff’. Over the years he’s shared photo’s with me that I’ve posted on the blog and been more then forthcoming with info on ‘oddities’ I’ve come across. Something we have in common is an interest and appreciation for the old stuff and how it used to be done.
Right after GEC came out with their #44 Gunstock pattern he forwarded a picture of some old Cattaraugus parts and drill jigs that have a familiar look. While we can’t precisely date their vintage, best guess is probably 1920’s-1930’s. Really nice looking old jigged bone. It would be fun to have a photo of a finished knife to see what the final product looked like.
We’ll see what the future holds, but the hope is from time to time I can make it a point to share more of the info he’s passed onto me. The photo’s are always fun to look at but they’re even better when someone can give us some background as to what we’re looking at.