I participated in the Fergus Falls Show over the weekend and as a result, missed posting an update on Friday. So this week, we’ll have a ‘weekend update’! It wasn’t the biggest show they’ve had but it was a decent turnout. Knife sales were good and I learned a few things. Not a bad weekend!
But first, a quick review of last week. It was a short work week for me as I spent 4 days in Trestle Pine Country. This was the last camping trip for the season and we picked a fantastic time to go. The weather was gorgeous and the leaves were really at their peak for color.
Every trip always seems to have it’s highlight and this time was no exception. While we were cruising the back roads 3 timber wolves crossed the road in front of us. The first one slowed down to check us out and two more came through behind him. We’ve seen more timber wolves up there in the last 3 years than we saw in the prior 40! It’s fun to see them but from talking to a few local residents, they’re also causing problems with livestock and pets.
I got back on Wednesday, just in time to pack up for the weekend show. Now I play catch-up this week and get ready for a pheasant hunting trip next weekend in North Dakota and one last crack at the prairie dogs. Then…. I’m done for a while. Life is good!
Knives, let see, the first of the Northfield Churchills arrived last week and went out as quick as they went in the store. The Smooth Yellow Bone is always a good seller and this one was no exception. There are a couple more Northfields that will be showing up this week.
The knife news that really caught my attention last week was the announcement of the GEC #43 Oregon available after the first of the year.
I’ll admit I’ve been pretty bored with the recent releases from GEC. The Barlows have been beat to death. While the small knives are popular, there’s an abundance of them in the marketplace. We haven’t seen many big knives in a while from Great Eastern and this looks like a winner.
The first thing I thought was it looks like a large version of the #73. The 73 was one of my first GEC’s and I really liked it. The #43 is going to be a full 1/2″ longer at 4.25″, so should put it in the size class of the #23 which measured 4.5″, or about a 1/4″ longer then the new #43. My bet would be in the future we’ll see a locking version and possibly a 2 blade as well. It sounds to me like it should be a great ‘work’ knife that’s not going to be overly heavy in the pocket. Now, if we could just get GEC to upgrade it to a premium steel…..
It’s been a good week to work inside as the weather outside is frigid. Temps have had trouble getting much above zero and when they have…. the wind kicks in. Today we get a break getting up to +10F and tomorrow starts off cold and by tomorrow nite we’re supposed to be in the the -24F range with a breeze. So what do you do in those conditions? Stay inside and try to get some work done.
I did get a few more of the knives listed this week out of that collection and got a handful more in from another collection. Seems like a lot of knives are coming up for sale before the holidays. This morning I also created a listing for the new Schatt & Morgan 71 John Henry Express knives. You can place an order online and I’ll bill you when the knives start shipping, most likely mid to late January.
Twice this week I’ve had email inquiries as to the availability of knives in the store. In one situation I ended up with a rather irritated customer since his email inquiry came in late at night, I didn’t respond until the next morning and meanwhile someone beat him to the draw. If there’s an item in the store that you want and the “Options” button is available, place an order. As occasionally happens, if it’s incorrectly listed as available but is actually out of stock, we can sort it out later. If it’s something you really want, don’t wait. Some of the knives I’ve listed lately are in high demand for collectors and they don’t tend to sit for long.
That being said, I’ll admit to being a bit of a hardass when it comes to requests for ‘early’ buys on some of the more difficult pieces. Every time I mention some new collection knives I get inquiries if I got any of this or that. Typically, I try to respond which is often followed by a request to purchase. I really prefer to put the knives in the store to give everyone a shot at them. If you’ve bought from me in the past, you know I make an effort to keep everything in the open without a ‘secret’ customer list or playing favorites.
I’m not aware of much new coming through before year end. Which is alright as I plan to escape for a few days before Christmas. There will be some more of the ‘collection’ knives listed and I’l try to keep it interesting. For now have a good weekend and stay warm!!!
Anyone else realize it’s just over 3 weeks until Christmas????? How in the world did that happen?
If you’ve been watching, I got another lot of the knives listed in the store this week and they tend to go about as fast as they get listed. There are some very nice pieces in the collection and a lot of you are paying attention. I have around 25 more that I’ll list next week. I’m also working on acquiring another small group of GEC’s from another collection next week.
The current collection has been a rather eclectic group with some TC Barlow’s and JBF Champlins thrown in the mix.
I was invoiced this week for the last of the GEC Beer Scouts (Wood). My best guess is they should show up tomorrow and I’ll try to get them listed and invoices sent out this weekend.
This week I shipped the wood out for the next run of the Trestle Pine Knives Superior. The initial run of the Superiors sold out really quickly and I meant to get another run put together earlier this fall. BUT…. didn’t happen. It’ll be after the first of the year before they’re ready so hang on. There’s going to be a good selection with 12 different wood handle options, including the Old Growth Wood.
A customer got ahold of me this week and told me that he had ‘dinged’ the blade on his Trestle Pine Buddy. He wasn’t quite sure how to go about touching up a convex grind without messing things up. If that happens to you, let me know and send it back for a free sharpening. All I ask is a couple of bucks to cover the return shipping.
A convex grind is really easy to maintain with a soft pad and some superfine (1500-2500 grit) sandpaper. This link: Bark River Collectors Assoc. covers the subject pretty thoroughly. In the event you don’t feel comfortable doing it on your own, let me know.
This is a good time of the year to get serious about dragging out the Edge Pro or whatever you use to keep things sharp. In the northern states, big game seasons are starting to wind down and some of us are getting ready to think about ice fishing. So while you’re touching up the hunting knife, you might just as well get the fillet knife out and get it ready as well.
I find I tend to sharpen my pocket EDC’s on a regular basis but neglect the bigger knives I take camping until I need them. There are few things more irritating then getting into camp and pulling out a dull knife. Now’s a good time to give them some attention, apply a coat of Frog Lube and put them away for the season. Come summer you’re ready to go!
We’re riding the coat tails of a gorgeous fall up here and the recent sunsets have been a bonus.
What doesn’t show up in the photo are a couple of flocks of mallards making enough racket to get the neighbors dog barking. We stood by the lake and watched the light show for a while before supper. In a matter of minutes, it started to fade away. No tall buildings, smoke stacks or smog. No sound other then the mallards and neighbors dog taunting each other . Love it!
As far as knives are concerned, a quiet week. The last of the GEC 15 cap lifters came through and I should see the first of the Beer Scouts in the next day or so. If you missed out on the 15’s, I have a fairly good stock on hand.
The balance of the collection I will be offering up for sale came in this morning. This weekend I’ll go through everything and plan on starting to list them next week. Its definitely one of the nicer collections I’ve had the opportunity to buy with some 45’s, 46’s, gorgeous early stags, nice group of 23’s, and so on. When you buy a collection, basically ‘blind’, it’s always interesting to see what you end up with! No disappointments this time. I’ve also accumulated some GEC’s on a few trades the last couple of months that will get thrown in the mix. Should have 120+ knives to add to the storefront.
Beyond that…. I plan on enjoying a gorgeous weekend with temps in the mid 60’s. Time to get in those last few rounds of golf, spend a little time with a cigar on the deck and just get ready for what we know is coming.
The only possible way it could be better would be if the elections were over and we could all give each other a big old collective hug, let the healing process begin and let bygones be bygones. And I’m gonna win the lottery and we’ll all live in a world full of knives that never get dull. GO VOTE!!!
Missed another Friday update and I’ve been hearing about it. Sorry about that, but sometimes ya just get busy!
There were a bunch of new products from Queen last week and I think I covered most of them in my midweek post. The GEC Boys Knives with the cap lifter finished up with the delivery of the Nifebrite yesterday. I think the Beer Scouts are the next in the production lineup before they launch more SFO’s.
For the time being anyway, I’ve decided to abandon the Pre-order program on upcoming releases. GEC seems to be increasing production quantities and quite honestly, the record keeping is a pain. Even with the non-refundable deposit, there are so many cancellations and requests to change to another handle option…. Life’s too short. The biggest problem on the recent release of the GEC 15’s and upcoming Beer Scouts was the delay between the announcement and the actual production. More then one customer had forgotten they even made a reservation or just decided they were no longer interested.
Yesterday I also received the first group of knives from a collection I picked up.
This is an incredibly nice collection of 100+ GEC’s from 2007 up to last year. There are another 10 knives to come and once they’re all in, I’ll start listing them in the store. Next week???
Otherwise, not a whole lot going on. I know I’ll be really happy when the elections are over. Promised myself when I started the blog that politics would be strictly off limits as a discussion topic and this year has been a true test to abide by that promise. All I can say is if you haven’t already voted, be sure you do next Tuesday. Don’t care who you support it’s an important right to exercise.
Really tough when the weekly update has to start with a return to reality. For those of you that aren’t regular readers, I spent a few days in the land of Trestle Pine Knives doing some field research and generally kicking back for a few days. Frankly, I’d much rather still be there then back at work. For now I’ll just say we had a great time and tease you a bit with this…..
But, more on that later!
Lotsa stuff waiting on my desk when I got home Wednesday nite. More 72’s of course and some great new Queen releases.
The first is a #56 Coke Bottle design with 1095 blades. These came in Amber Stag, Elk, Torched Stag and Winterbottom handle options. Great looking knives and very nicely done.
And the third are the S&M #99’s in Brown Jigged Bone & Ebony Wood. These are really nicely put together but fair warning, they do have some pretty hefty springs. I would rank the pull at a solid 8.5. It’s a great looking traditional knife for the individual wanting a medium size knife that has a really solid lockup.
Next week, Queen will be shipping out a couple more new items in the form of the 41 Folding Hunter.
Based on the popularity of the last release with the Spalted Maple, I’m betting these are going to sell out quickly.
I’m getting caught up on processing orders and following up on messages. There are more knives coming in today and tomorrow so the next few days and the first of the week you should see quite a few new knives get listed. In fact, I’m happy to report that the final lot of Trestle Pine Grand Portages will be going in the store the first of the week. There are also more Portages and some Buddy’s as well. Stay tuned!!
These weekly updates seem to come closer together every week!! I’m not sure if we started shortening the weeks to 6 days instead of 7 but it sure feels like it. It’s another case of summer sliding by before we know what’s happening.
The GEC 14’s continue to trickle in and hopefully should finish up fairly soon. I know there are a ton of SFO’s coming through so it’s going to take a while. It’s starting to look like GEC may have finally come close to matching demand with production. From the looks of things most dealers have extras in inventory.
As promised, I did get the rest of the knives from the collection I picked up listed in the store this week. There were some really incredibly nice pieces in this group like the following.
This is rather neat Prototype as I don’t believe this was the final version that was released for the President’s Choice Knife in 2002. It is indeed a ‘prototype’. The shield is different and the laser etching on the back didn’t make it to the final run. If you look closely at the pins in the second photo, you can see they had lasered a spot where the pins were to be set. I’m not sure if the intent was for this to act as an outline around the pin or why it was done.
It’s hard to find a quality collection like this for sale with any regularity. And it’s really fun to be able to actually get to buy a group of knives like these. If you have a collection you’re interested in selling, know of anyone wishing to liquidate their collection or if you here of an estate situation, drop me a note.
I had a short conversation with Chris this past week and it sounds like there’s an outside chance they may get to the 15’s before late fall. They have a bunch of SFO’s to run but most of them are single blade projects which go together fairly quick, so with any luck…
Has to be short weekly update I’m afraid. Have to take care of some other business for a day or two and let the update sit until the last minute.
I see there are a bunch of GEC 15’s coming my way either Saturday or Monday. As soon as they arrive I’ll be sorting through reservations and getting invoices sent out. I should hopefully also be getting the balance of my order for the 14 Nifbrites two blades. Not sure why those have gotten so strung out but thanks for everyone’s patience.
This week I put a number of the knives up from a collection of Cotton Samplers. Really a nice group and a few unique pieces like this Whaler.
There’s probably another dozen or so to add to the list and I’ll try to get them listed next week.
Otherwise, it was a dreary week for mid July with high winds, rain, temps in the 60’s. Made it feel more like early May then the lead in to August! With just a couple more weeks before our annual family get together, makes me just a bit nervous. We need calm, sunny warm days to keep everyone happy on the water.
Sorry I didn’t get around to the Friday update, but I got caught up in getting ready for the Fergus Falls gun show. My intentions were good, but it time ran out.
The only real news last week was the release of the Schatt & Morgan Jumbo Carpenter Whittler. Really a hefty whittler and perfect for notching and trimming on a building project.
The other release from Queen was the Stag Bone Folding Hunter.
My understanding is that other then the SFO’s we can’t really anticipate anything new from GEC for the rest of the year. Right now they’re finishing up the run of 77 American Jacks. Next is another large SFO run, then a rerun of the Bullnose with a bunch of attached SFO’s, some more of the 25’s the first of the year and that’s about it. I’ve been accused of having a touch of ADD to begin with, and it might be justified as I’m reeeallly having trouble staying interested.
Otherwise, the gun show was obviously the highlight of the week. I was really interested to see what the feedback was going to be regarding the Trestle Pine Knives. The response was everything I could hope for and more. This was the first show that I had the knives available to show and the feedback was great. Sold a couple of knives, gave a couple away and came away really feeling good about the project.
Overall, the crowd was pretty sparse which all of us blamed on the weather. Even my wife was encouraging me to come home to go play golf. The whole weekend was gorgeous with temps in the mid to upper 60’s. On the upside, the sparse crowd made it made it possible to spend some time visiting with customers and lookers.
A dealer at the show said his knife sales have been fair this summer. A couple customers said there didn’t seem to be much interesting to buy and a longtime customer lamented the lack of product coming out of what used to be considered one of the most exciting new knife companies.
Personally, I sold a few knives but the accessory items drew a lot of customers this time. Sharpening stones/strops, oil and honing compound did well as did the Estwing Hatchets. And books, I can never understand why they don’t sell that well in the store but they’re one of the consist show sellers. I think it’s that ability to pick a book up, scan through it and make a decision. All in all, it was a good show. Made a little money, talked to some customers and made a couple of kids happy. About all you can ask for!!
The first week of September has ended rather quietly. Nothing coming from either of the primary knife manufacturers. For the most part, the deluge of 81’s is pretty well wound up. Now GEC goes into SFO mode for a while and then we’ll see another run of the 77’s coming through.
I’ll do a recap of the survey next week, and so far the reply’s have been interesting. The response to the survey has been really good. There was a point in time a few years ago that I did surveys on a fairly regular basis and it makes me wonder if it might be fun to start that up again. Maybe just a one or two question survey every week or two…..hmmmmm.
Last I heard, the Trestle Pine Knives ‘Superior’ is still on the schedule to go into production by mid September. Hope that holds as I’d really like to have them in hand later this month. Everyone I’ve talked to has been pretty enthusiastic about the wharncliffe blade being made with 154CM. To me it makes a lot of sense and am really anxious to try one out.
Toward the end of next week I’ll be suspending shipping for a few days. It’s that time of the year to head North and do a little field testing. Haven’t decided what to take along, but I’ve got a few things in mind. It’s starting to cool off up North and they’re talking about highs in the upper 50’s and night time lows in the low 40s’. Definitely going to have morning and evening camp fires!! Lapsang tea, a few cigars, …..pack your kit Dave and I’ll meet ya at the Grand Portage!!!