Tag Archives: Whaler

Incredible Customer

I have to share the story of an incredible customer that made my day.  He’s the kind of individual that makes the knife business ‘fun’.

After my on going whining this week about the situation surrounding the shortage of Whalers and subsequent rationing, I got a generous offer from a customer.  Understand, I was just venting my frustration and not necessarily soliciting sympathy.  (Well maybe a little)  I didn’t ask permission to use his full name but if he wants to respond to this post I’ll gladly give him full name recognition.  For now, I’ll use his first name, Jeff.

I received an email from Jeff telling me had ordered Whalers from several distributors in the hopes of getting ‘a’ knife.  Jeff ended up with two spare whalers and offered them to me in an effort to help more people get a shot at owning a Whaler.  He didn’t ‘offer’ the knives to me at an inflated price or ask for any special consideration, in fact, he didn’t even bring up reimbursement for shipping!

Over the years I’ve done a fair amount of business with Jeff and always respected him as a great guy to do business with.  If there was a problem with an order he was always understanding and willing to work out any problems.  He was never demanding about handle material, fit and finish, etc.  This offer pushes him over the top as a great guy.  Jeff, many thanks.  You’re a credit to the knife collector world.

Now, how I do put these back into circulation?  My first thought is to put them out at a markup over issue price and send the ‘profit’ to Jeff.  That only seems fair.  I thought about some sort of raffle but that’s a pain.  For now, I think I’ll chew on it for a few days and figure something out.

Another bit of good news regarding the Whalers.  I just found out this morning that I have a few Muscle Bone EDC knives coming.  Not sure what the issues are with them, but typically it’s nothing too serious.

Next up should be the 15 Boys Knives.  I’ve got a pile of early orders in place for these and don’t anticipate any shortage issues with them.   My understanding is that production numbers on these is ….substantial.  It’s just amazing the demand for that pattern.

At any rate, considering how the week started out, it’s great to finish it on a positive note!!

 

Whaler Shipment Update

I received the last of my Muscle Bone Whaler order yesterday and should finish invoicing the balances due for early orders today.  If you haven’t been invoiced yet, hang tight.  It appears I’ll be able to get knives to everyone that ordered one.  You may not get your entire order, but everyone should get something.

As I said earlier, I only got around 2/3 of what I ordered.  Even though I tried to build in a cushion to prevent over booking, I hadn’t anticipated getting shorted anywhere near that quantity.  Several people had placed orders ( in some cases several orders) for up to 10 knives.  So I made the decision to spread them out.

Most folks understood where I was coming from.  A few, not so much.  I’d rather have a few people mad at me and a lot more happy they got a knife.  In the future, if I continue taking early orders, I’m going to limit the quantity an individual can order and scale WAY back on the quantity of early orders I’ll accept.  This time around I had reserved 25% of my order to cover any shortages and still came up short.

Thanks for understanding.

Whaler Allocation Shortfall

The Whaler situation is a bad news ~ good news story.  While explaining the situation, I’m going to try to answer the range of questions I’ve been getting, so read carefully.  Let’s get the bad news out of the way.

It was confirmed yesterday that a large percentage of the Iron Wood Whalers were rejected for cosmetic reasons.  I ended up getting about 2/3’s of what I had ordered and at this point it sounds like that’s all I’ll get.

The good news (if you will) is even though I allowed early orders for about 75% of the Whalers I hoped to receive, I’m hopeful everyone will get a knife.  As usual, a few early orders didn’t respond to requests for payments so those orders were cancelled which will help.  The second thing I’m going to do is reduce the multiple knife orders to just one.  A few customers placed orders for 3-5 knives or placed multiple orders.  On larger run, standard production knives that’s usually not a problem.

Going forward I’m going to clearly restrict early orders to just one knife on these allocated runs.  The early orders are an attempt to give as many people as possible a shot at a hard to get knife before they’re released.

The next situation is going to be the Muscle Bone.  Without a doubt, we’ll see the same shortages arise.  Until the order arrives, I won’t know for sure where I’m at on filling those early orders.

If you ordered an Iron Wood AND a Muscle Bone Whaler you probably haven’t been invoiced for the balance due yet.   You won’t be until the Muscle Bone arrives which should happen in the next few days.  I’m holding back Iron Wood for those orders and at this point, it looks like the Iron Wood will all get filled.  Fingers crossed.

I’ll repeat that I won’t be sending out invoices until I have the Muscle Bone in hand and know where I’m at regarding quantities.  Orders will be billed and filled on a first in first out basis.  If you’re toward the end of the list and I”m short of Muscle Bone you may still be in the running for a knife if someone else doesn’t pick up their order.  In short, it could be a drawn out process.  Be patient.

The GEC pin sets should be here the first of the week.  Great Eastern very generously donated these to the TSA Knives Wounded Warrior Project fund raising effort.  I believe there will be 30 pins in each set.  It should be a complete set of pins excluding any SFO’s, Club and Rendezvous pins.  All of the proceeds from the sale will be donated to the Wounded Warrior Project.  NO early orders on these.

 

 

Whaler Shipping Update 5.9.18

I’m getting emails and calls asking when I’m going to ship the Whalers.  Actually, I started shipping the Iron Wood Saturday.

The Whalers are coming through piecemeal. The first box of Iron Wood arrived late last week, another box yesterday and the balance of Iron Wood are still on the way.  My guess is I’ll see the Muscle Bone coming through in a similar manner.  I assume GEC is trying to get knives in everyone’s hands as soon as possible and this means unless a dealer only ordered a few, they’re coming through in partial quantities.

IF you only ordered an Iron Wood, you should have received an invoice.  If you paid the invoice,  your knife is either in your hands or on its way.  IF you ordered a Muscle Bone  and an Iron Wood (or just a Muscle Bone), you probably haven’t been invoiced yet.  As soon as the Muscle Bone arrives, invoices will start going out for the balance of the orders.

Lots of requests are coming through for specific handle coloration preferences.  Sorry, but it’s just not possible to take care of everyone’s requests.  I haven’t seen any of the Iron Wood that doesn’t look good.  If you don’t like the looks of your knife, put it on Ebay.  I just saw the first one sold on Ebay this AM for $250.  Another is at auction with a current bid of $169.00 and another buy it now for $215.

I said earlier I was allowing 72 hours for payment of your invoices before your deposit was lost and your order cancelled.  Several of you emailed and told me you were sending a money order which would run beyond the 72 hour window to get here.  That’s fine.  As long as I know what’s going on.  IF I don’t hear from you or receive payment in the 72 hour window, I’m operating on the assumption you’re not going to complete the purchase and your order is cancelled.

I’m trying to fill orders in the sequence the orders were received.  Believe me, the sooner I can ship the orders the happier we’ll all be!

First Whalers Arrived!

I just received the first Whalers this afternoon.  They look great with satin finished blades, bolsters and shields.  Just a classy looking knife.

462218 GEC Iron Wood Whalers

As you can see there’s a lot of variation in the colors.  The handful I’ve looked at all have nice grain.  A few of you asked for hand picked knives with light wood, dark wood, straight grain, lots of figure, etc, etc.  It’s just not possible.

The Iron Wood and Muscle Bone are shipping in ‘partial’ shipments from GEC as they finish them.  I have at least two more boxes of Iron Wood coming and the Muscle Bone will be broken up as well.  By the way, I got the pricing on the Muscle Bone this afternoon.  $149.95.   The Iron Wood is $139.95  So hears what’s going to happen.

I’ll start sending out new store invoices & PayPal invoices to customers for balance due on their early orders.  Its going to take a few days to get all of the invoices out.  You’ll have 72 hours to pay the balance due or your early order gets cancelled and your deposit forfeited.  If you’re going to send a money order, don’t I assume I know that.  TELL ME!!!!

So many of you placed orders for one of each handle material, I won’t start shipping until I have both knives on hand.  Once I have a decent quantity of both handle materials on hand, I will start shipping the early orders.  They’ll ship in the order that the early orders were placed.

Weekly Update 5.4.18

It’s been a relatively quiet week as new releases or deliveries go.  I had hoped to have the first of the Whalers in hand by now but nothing so far.  The next delivery is later this morning so with any luck…

Emails and phone calls started up this week asking when the knives will be in and what they’ll cost.  Hopefully the Desert Ironwood will start showing up in the next day or two.  GEC likes to keep the pricing secret until the day the actually ship.  This is a major PITA for both dealers and customers.  Some good news, I did get the pricing on the Desert Ironwood Whaler this AM.  They come in at $139.95.  That’s hard to believe when you consider the 2011, 2 blade Cocobolo Whalers cost $139.95 and get a load of this, the 2013 2 Blade Cocobolo was $130.00!!!  I anticipated we’d see the new Whalers in the $160+ range.  It’ll be interesting to see what the prices are on Ebay once they start getting flipped.

Every now an then I get into a discussion with someone about the bevel I use with my Edge Pro.  Good question and it varies from knife to knife.  I can say that I have hit what appears to be the sweet spot on my Trestle Pine Gunflint and Topper’s.

Trestle Pine Topper and Gunflint

It’s 22 degrees.  I started around 20 degrees and slowly crept up to 22 and that has been the best angle for edge retention as well as taking a razor edge.  My knife gets used a lot and I’m finding I can run 3-4 weeks without totally taking my edge off.  The blade doesn’t have that hair shaving edge but it easily glides through cardboard and slices envelopes without tearing.

This isn’t saying it’s the perfect bevel for your knife but it’s working great on mine.  The best bevel is all dependent on blade design, steel and use.  The steel in both of these Trestle Pines perform beautifully at 22….for me.  If you have an Edge Pro, try tweaking that bevel a degree or fraction thereof at a time.  You might be surprised at what kind of an edge you can develop.

Spring appears here to stay and I’m anxious to get out and do some camping.  Unfortunately, it’s not going to happen for a while.  I have the Blackjack I’m anxious to put through the paces as well as field testing the  “Baddest Bee” Fire Fuses.  Nothing beats actually using the products you’re selling!!!

 

Bull Nose, Whalers, WWP Buttons & ICE

Today saw the last of the current 71 Bull Nose production.  I listed the Red Linen Micarta and they look great.  In fact, I’ve never been a great fan of the Delrin and the Linen Micarta is a welcome change.    Next up are the Whalers.

71 Red Linen Micarta

I talked to Chris on Thursday and there may be a few start shipping to dealers today.  Chances are best that we’ll see them start going out in numbers next week.  With any luck, by late next week we should start to see them show up.

As soon as they arrive I’ll be sending out invoices for the early order Whalers.  Price will reflect the deposit you made and shipping will be added to overseas orders only.  Watch for your invoice to arrive from PayPal as I’m allowing a72 hour window to receive payments.  IF the payment doesn’t show up in that time, you lose your deposit and the knife goes up for sale in the store.  If you plan to send a money order, be sure to let me know so you don’t lose your knife.

While talking with Chris I mentioned the GEC buttons that I’ve been selling and donating the proceeds to the Wounded Warrior Project.  So far, all I’ve offered is a set of 10 different pins which have gone over really well.  Well, thanks to Chris and the generosity of GEC, there’s a special offer coming.

What GEC is doing for me (and the WWP) is donating a limited number of complete sets of  all the pins that GEC has made to date.  At this point I don’t even know for sure how many that is but it is going to be a bunch.  The number of sets will be limited to around a dozen and the proceeds will be donated to the Wounded Warrior Project.

I won’t be taking any reservations or early orders for these as I don’t know for sure how many pins there will be in a set or what the price will be.  It’s also going to be a while before these come in but I wanted to throw it out there for everyone to think about.  Thanks again to Chris and GEC for this offer.

And to clarify the Bolster in regards to the upcoming 44’s.  The Northfields will have Brass bolsters with the exception of the Stag which will have nickel silver bolsters.  It is shown that way in the mock up GEC published but I had it listed as ‘brass’ in the storefront.

Finally, the ice conditions are a changing!  I took a drive around the lake this morning and signs of deterioration are increasing.

The shallow areas are starting to open up but there’s still a lot of ice to go yet.  Temperatures have cooled off a bit but the wind (which is a major factor) has been steady and persistent.  The winds have been in the 20-30k range and that’s the trend for the next 4 or 5 days.  AND by Monday they say we could see temps in the 70’s.  That combination is going to speed things up.

It’s about time to start thinking about getting boats, docks and lifts ready to go in the water.  Sooon I hope!!

 

Early Order Update 3.9.18

Let me start by saying I was a little overwhelmed by the response to starting up the early order program again.  I had discontinued it last year for a number of reasons, the major one being it can be a real PITA to keep up with.  Even with the requisite deposit there were still a surprising number of ‘no pays’.  Orders come through without the deposit, etc, etc.  In addition, we saw the quantities (i.e. availability) of regular production knives increase substantially reducing the need to order early.

As soon as it became official the Whalers were going to be run once again, there was no doubt the interest was going to be sky high.  For that reason I thought I’d try the early order system one more time and include the new 44 Gunstock and 15 Boys Knives.  The volume of orders has been almost triple what I anticipated and the number of ‘thank you’ for reinstating the early order program comments was a surprise.  Feedback like that is what helps steer the direction of TSA Knives.  Going forward, you’ll see more Early Order offers.

I put a limited number of the Whalers up for early order and held some back in reserve until next Monday.  Chris will have the final numbers on dealer orders and I’ll get confirmation on exactly how many Whalers I’m getting.  Once I know where I stand, I hope to be able to offer a few more Whalers for sale but I don’t want to get overbooked.   At this writing there are still both handle options available but only a few.  If they sell out, check back Monday afternoon as I’m hoping I can release a few more.

I’ve been asked if the Desert Ironwood or the Muscle Bone Whalers has been selling better.  Right now the Ironwood has a very slight edge over the Bone.  Part of that is no doubt due to people not knowing what to expect with the “Muscle Bone”.  Until you actually see it….???  As in the past, after we actually saw the Percheron Bone and early Primitive Bone, interest increased.  I’m willing to bet we’ll similarly see interest grow for the Muscle Bone.

Early Orders for the new 44 Gunstock has the Northfield Autumn Gold running 2:1 over the Cocobolo and Stag.  Cocobolo is running 3:2 over the Sambar Stag.  The Northfields in total are out booking the Tidioutes 20:1.  I’m betting the Cocobolo is going to look fantastic next to the Brass.

Over 60% of the early orders are for one of each handle in the Whaler.  Almost 90%+ of the orders are for more then one knife.  That may be 2 or more Whalers on an order or a mixture of 46’s, 44’s and 15’s.

Understand, the above numbers are my numbers.  I have no idea what the mix is for anyone else.

It’s sounding more doubtful that we’ll see Queen revived any time soon.  A number of people have continued to ask about the future of the Trestle Pine Knives.  I’m exploring some options but am a very long way from anything certain.  While I’m not getting my hopes up, I’m definitely not giving up just yet.

 

GEC Whaler is Back!

I just talked to Chris this morning and placed an order for the upcoming re-release of the Tidioute #46 Whaler.  If you’ve been around for a while, you’re probably familiar with this monster of a knife.  You’re probably also aware of the monstrous prices they now command on Ebay.  $400-500 isn’t uncommon.  If you’ve been wanting to own one but can’t justify these stratospheric prices take comfort and have patience, your chance is coming to be able to afford one.

Later today or tomorrow I’ll be putting up a link to pre-order one of the Whaler’s as well as the new Gunstocks and Boys’ knives.  Here’s a breakdown of what’s coming.

#462218 Whaler Tidioute Only, Spear and Pen blades, due to ship in June
Muscle Bone
Desert Ironwood

#152118 Tidioute Single Blade, All Steel
With Traditional Bail and Chain
Antique Yellow Jig Bone
OD Green Linen Micarta
Gabon Ebony Wood

Without Bail and Chain
Antique Yellow Jig Bone
OD Green Linen Micarta
Gabon Ebony Wood

#441218 Gunstock Clip and Pen blades – 3.5″ long closed – ready to ship
approx. end July
Tidioute – Smooth bolster and end cap
Goldenrod Jig Bone – Tidioute Shield
Gabon Ebony – Hotdog Shield
OD Green Linen Micarta – Hotdog Shield

Northfield
Autumn Gold Jig Bone – Brass Bullet Shield, Brass Pins, Brass Rat Tail
Bolster, Brass stamped UN-X-LD end cap

Cocobolo Rosewood – Brass Bullet Shield, Brass Pins, Brass Rat Tail
Bolster, Brass stamped UN-X-LD end cap

Sambar Stag – Nickel/Silver bolster and end cap, no shield

I’m surprised to see GEC put Brass bolsters and shields on the Northfield Gunstocks but I like the concept.  I’ve been using brass on the Trestle Pine Knives, (including the Gunflint & Topper gunstocks) and like the look as well as the way brass ‘ages’.

For now, hang tight and I’ll put up pre-order pages for the new releases.   As in the past, you’ll be required to put down a deposit with your order that will be non-refundable unless GEC changes the handle material or can’t deliver the requested quantities.

New Additions to the Store

More new additions went into the store this morning and there are a couple of true gems.  The first is a 48 Templar with End of Day handle material is a one of a kind knife.

 

48 Templar 'End of Days' one of a kind
48 Templar ‘End of Days’ one of a kind

There is also a Whaler which we don’t see show up for sale very often.  And there are several more to come.

46 Whaler Cocobolo
46 Whaler Cocobolo
735212 Burnt Stag
735212 Burnt Stag

In addition, I filled in some voids in the Fallkniven lineup.  One that really stood out is the TK3 TreKroner with Cocobolo Wood handles.

TreKroner
TreKroner

One addition I’m really tempted to try out personally is a Bark River Blackwater II Boot knife with the Elmax Steel blade.  Being a steel junkie of sorts, I’ve read about it and it sounds like a fantastic blade for the price.  Tough, holds an edge and easy to sharpen (all things considered).   It sounds like it has a lot of the characteristics of 154CM, but better.

Black Water II Elmax
Black Water II Elmax

The Beer Scouts are continuing to dribble in.  There’s going to be a surplus available in the store so don’t worry if you missed out on the pre-orders.  The Draft Beer acrylic has been a great looking handle.

Beer Scout 'Draft Beer' Acrylic
Beer Scout ‘Draft Beer’ Acrylic

More new additions will be coming through the week so don’t forget to check the “Recently Added Products” category in the storefront.