Knife History: Major developments?

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SpyderEdgeForever
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Knife History: Major developments?

Postby SpyderEdgeForever » Sun Jul 21, 2019 5:24 pm

I was reading up on the history of knives, primarilly focusing on folders.

Here is an interesting video on this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SQwpWUOvdXE

The main family line for folders that he appears to link up is this:

Ancient Roman Folding knives -- European such as Spanish Navaja and French Opinel -- Buck 110 Folder USA -- Al Mar SERE folders USA -- Spyderco One Hand Openers with Sal Glesser -- Robert Terzuola Tactical Folders USA -- Chris Reeve Frame Lock Folders -- Kit Carson M16 Flipper Folders and out of these come much more.

Here is a question I have for everyone here: Why do you think we don't see universities and colleges and other establishment educational institutions offering a course for a degree or certificate in knives and knife making? Why is it that the only ones who seem to be offering that are various Blade smith groups that mainly focus on custom and hand made knives? Why no commercial/production knife making degrees in places like Harvard, Yale, Rutgers, Princeton, and various city and state colleges?

With all of the talent available you would think that would be a great thing to have. Instead it seems that one would have to get indirect studies such as metallurgy, polymer engineering, and other design and manufacturing skills. It would be better if they had an umbrella course devoted to "Production Knife Manufacturing", you study that for two or four years, and you are ready to go. Why not?

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Re: Knife History: Major developments?

Postby JD Spydo » Sun Jul 21, 2019 9:49 pm

I say our country the great USA has a rich history of knives and knife making. It's been a few years back that the "Knives Illustrated" magazine did a big article once on all the knife companies ( past & present) in the state of New York. I was mind blown how many great knives had been or are still being made in New York state. And Case is just across the border in Bradford, Pennsylvania USA. I think Ka-bar knives are still made in Olean, New York. Also I believe Cutco knives are made in the state of New York as well.

We had a really classic, well known knife and razor company here in Missouri called "Keen Kutter". I know two old men locally that both of them only collect Keen Kutter, Case and Queen. Both of them are in their 80s and said they carried and used those brands all their lives. I must say that the Keen Kutter company not only made great knives for their time but they also made some handsome straight razors as well.

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Re: Knife History: Major developments?

Postby Doc Dan » Mon Jul 22, 2019 6:59 am

SpyderEdgeForever wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 5:24 pm
I was reading up on the history of knives, primarilly focusing on folders.

Here is an interesting video on this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SQwpWUOvdXE

The main family line for folders that he appears to link up is this:

Ancient Roman Folding knives -- European such as Spanish Navaja and French Opinel -- Buck 110 Folder USA -- Al Mar SERE folders USA -- Spyderco One Hand Openers with Sal Glesser -- Robert Terzuola Tactical Folders USA -- Chris Reeve Frame Lock Folders -- Kit Carson M16 Flipper Folders and out of these come much more.

Here is a question I have for everyone here: Why do you think we don't see universities and colleges and other establishment educational institutions offering a course for a degree or certificate in knives and knife making? Why is it that the only ones who seem to be offering that are various Blade smith groups that mainly focus on custom and hand made knives? Why no commercial/production knife making degrees in places like Harvard, Yale, Rutgers, Princeton, and various city and state colleges?

With all of the talent available you would think that would be a great thing to have. Instead it seems that one would have to get indirect studies such as metallurgy, polymer engineering, and other design and manufacturing skills. It would be better if they had an umbrella course devoted to "Production Knife Manufacturing", you study that for two or four years, and you are ready to go. Why not?
There are or have colleges that taught or teach this subject. I remember finding out about this at the big knife maker gathering outside of Birmingham, AL one year. Don’t ask me to recall where. I seem to remember community colleges.
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Re: Knife History: Major developments?

Postby Doc Dan » Mon Jul 22, 2019 7:03 am

Ok. Googling Community college knife making, I found many, such as Bill Moran school Texarkana college, Haywood community college, alderwood, Montgomery community college, and many more.
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Re: Knife History: Major developments?

Postby JD Spydo » Mon Jul 22, 2019 1:11 pm

Doc Dan wrote:
Mon Jul 22, 2019 7:03 am
Ok. Googling Community college knife making, I found many, such as Bill Moran school Texarkana college, Haywood community college, alderwood, Montgomery community college, and many more.
If I were to go to one of those knife making schools that Texarkana, Bill Moran school would be my first pick. I've heard that one is really done well. I got to meet the great, late Bill Moran on two occasions before his passing and he truly was a prince of a man and very wise too.

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Re: Knife History: Major developments?

Postby Naperville » Tue Jul 23, 2019 6:40 pm

SpyderEdgeForever wrote:
Sun Jul 21, 2019 5:24 pm
Here is a question I have for everyone here: Why do you think we don't see universities and colleges and other establishment educational institutions offering a course for a degree or certificate in knives and knife making? Why is it that the only ones who seem to be offering that are various Blade smith groups that mainly focus on custom and hand made knives? Why no commercial/production knife making degrees in places like Harvard, Yale, Rutgers, Princeton, and various city and state colleges?

With all of the talent available you would think that would be a great thing to have. Instead it seems that one would have to get indirect studies such as metallurgy, polymer engineering, and other design and manufacturing skills. It would be better if they had an umbrella course devoted to "Production Knife Manufacturing", you study that for two or four years, and you are ready to go. Why not?
I agree. Each state should have at least one University with an AAS in "Production Knife Manufacturing" or "Steel Working."
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Re: Knife History: Major developments?

Postby SpyderEdgeForever » Tue Jul 23, 2019 9:57 pm

Naperville, do you like the Benchmade Bugout? It looks like a good folder.

Here is a video I found on youtube:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yNuHHwj0IMc

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Re: Knife History: Major developments?

Postby Naperville » Tue Jul 23, 2019 10:27 pm

SpyderEdgeForever wrote:
Tue Jul 23, 2019 9:57 pm
Naperville, do you like the Benchmade Bugout? It looks like a good folder.
Regarding the video, I only have one S30V knife, a Yojimbo 2, which I also have two of in 20CV and CF. Yet, I believe the steel is good, much better than average.

But, I don't think I'm a Benchmade guy. I have 85 knives and just one Benchmade, a Benchmade Barrage in M4 from the Custom Shop. I have a pretty well developed list of at least 250 knives that I want to look at again for purchase, with maybe 50 that I really must have.

The Custom Shop, Benchmade Crooked River, in S90V, with Carbon Fiber Handle, all black hardware (for $330) is the only Benchmade that I feel that I must have. Maybe I'd also buy an Adamas in D2 too. But that is it.

I pretty much wrote off Benchmade after it came out that for years they had been cutting up firearms, and donating to hard core leftists in Oregon. I'm not that political online, I'm no longer on most social media. I'm not on Twitter, Gab, Reddit, Blade Forums ...just Facebook with a few guys that I trained with in martial arts. And, I do not debate politics with my friends (martial artists or other acquaintances) I just feel that with 50 to 250 knives that I want, Benchmade may have to wait to get any money from me for a while. Maybe I'll buy the knives in 2020, we shall see. The Bugout is not on my list of knives to buy.

I do not own any firearms currently, but I STRONGLY support the 2nd Amendment. I am a member of USCCA, GOA, NRA and Knife Rights, and I support Law Enforcement.
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Re: Knife History: Major developments?

Postby Water Bug » Thu Jul 25, 2019 3:51 pm

Not sure knifemaking fits a university or college curriculum, unless it is an institution that was founded by a reputable knifemaker. Your typical university or college is all about standardization of how things are done, thus such institutions would probably ensure all knifemaking courses are taught the same way, which means all knifemakers graduating would potentially end up making their knives the same way, WHICH takes away from uniqueness and learned skills going into making a knife as learned from a master knifemaker in his or her shop...

...As an analogy, I watched a golf tournament on TV where the commentators talked about the current, young players. One commentator noted how this "new generation" of golfers took golfing in college and how ALL of them swung their clubs and did their drives and putts the "same way" since the golfing curriculums were standardized. He then compared them to "self-taught" golfers such as Bubba Watson, Lee Trevino, and Arnold Palmer, whose styles were their individual styles and how, even by "today's standard" were considered "wrong" or "inefficient," won their share of tournaments and championships. I say, in my opinion, that knifemaking is one of those trades where someone who wants to be a knifemaker should seek out veteran knifemakers willing to take them under their wings as an apprentice to carry on the trade. To me, that's about as genuine as you can get to the true trade and history of knifemaking.

To me, a standardized knifemaking course at the standardized university or college produces "cookie cutter" makers who all do the same thing while someone taught by a skilled knifemaker produces an individual who'll learn from the master and perhaps expand upon what the trade secrets learned.
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Re: Knife History: Major developments?

Postby Naperville » Thu Jul 25, 2019 5:04 pm

Water Bug wrote:
Thu Jul 25, 2019 3:51 pm
Not sure knifemaking fits a university or college curriculum...
I graduated from Iowa State University and they had a glass blowing shop where they made items for the chemistry dept. Sometimes they got wild and made all sorts of glass blown objects. Not sure if it's still open, I graduated in '98.

Colleges and Universities are not the end of an education, they are the beginning. They get you to where you can learn more rapidly by having a firm grasp of the basics.
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Re: Knife History: Major developments?

Postby knivesandbooks » Wed Jul 31, 2019 6:22 pm

I work for a large and good community college. Regarding having knife making as a program, it would be tricky. An AAS differs from AA and AS programs by not having the focus on transferring to a bachelor program. AAS programs are designed to make people employable in fields within the community and are justified by needs within the community and its industries. As such, my college offers drafting, manufacturing, etc. All of these would help a fledgling knife maker, all teach CAD and other important skills. The issue with offering knife making as an AAS is how specific it is. Colleges have to justify to state regents that these programs will result in employment. It would be hard to justify as there aren't many employers seeking knife makers here or in most parts of the country, whereas RN's and drafters are in high demand. Knife making could be offered in art departments if there are people to teach it, of course. But to me, apprenticing to be a knife maker makes a lot more sense. You would learn the trade directly from someone working in it, while also being there for the day to day running of the business. Of course, coming in to an apprenticeship or jumping in headfirst alone would most likely be a lot better with knowledge of CAD, manufacturing, drafting, etc. I know that Brian Nadeau of SharpByDesign had extensive machinjng and CAD experience before he got into knife making. GEC's owner said he doesn't look to hire knifemakers but people with an interest and natural inclination to mechanics. Of course, getting into forging undoubtedly requires a lot of trial and error and an apprenticeship is probably best if one wants to do it for more than just a hobby.
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