What's your preference when ordering a 'custom knife'?

How do you prefer your custom knife makers to approach their work?

  • Selling a range of established 'models/patterns'.

    Votes: 2 15.4%
  • Working on each knife as a complete 'one off'.

    Votes: 11 84.6%

  • Total voters
    13

WellieP

Well-Known Member
Early on in my knife making career I sold a range of 'models' or patterns I'd developed over time.

Nowadays I rarely make the same knife twice as I feel (personally) this is more the essence of what custom knife making is (I find it more interesting work too).

There are as many companies selling established patterns (Emberleaf, loveless, Dozier etc.) as there are those whose making is guided by the muse each time and is perhaps more varied (Geoff Hague, Stuart Mitchell, Alan Wood, et al.).

Which approach do you prefer and why (as a customer or a maker)? Also, do you see one methodology as more 'custom' than the other?

Not nessecarily going to change what I'm doing, just interested in perspectives.
 

Overlay

Well-Known Member
two knives. come to mind - one that suits Roe and muntie rear clearance with no hindrance and with ease - 2nd one for the larger deer that has a bit of grunt behind it
i use a cael, 1 large alan wood and 3 small ones and a bird and trout from from mark zabrowski all do the job admirably and are all different weights and shapes, only common rail is stainless and stabilised for me
getting the right one should be the priority for the job in hand and the enjoyment of using it
 

willie_gunn

Well-Known Member
I've bought knives that are based on established patterns, as well as having them built to my exact configuration.

I personally prefer the latter approach, as it gives the opportunity to incorporate those ideas that I feel will result in a knife that is ideal for the specific purposes I want to use it for based on the species I will be stalking.

A luxury, admittedly, but there's a lot of pleasure to be derived from both thinking up the design and then using it.

The risk, of course, is that one's techniques and requirements inevitably change over time, with the result that you find the exact specification for the perfect stalking knife is almost constantly evolving. If you're not careful you can find yourself thinking "now if I just tweaked the design here it really would be perfect".

Basically just the excuse needed for yet another commission :D
 

long_range_rob

Well-Known Member
‘d all of the above ‘ produce a couple of mainstays and one off commissions too. One is bread and butter and the others will maintain your interest and build your reputation
 

Northman_

Well-Known Member
He should have a range...

Slipjoint
Bird and trout
Skinner
Scandi grind
Bowie
what ever what ever..

Make these out of water jet cut blanks and stock removal to keep the lights and bills paid.


Then a line of hand forged to customer specs..
 

WellieP

Well-Known Member
He should have a range...

Slipjoint
Bird and trout
Skinner
Scandi grind
Bowie
what ever what ever..

Make these out of water jet cut blanks and stock removal to keep the lights and bills paid.


Then a line of hand forged to customer specs..
That’s kind of what I used to do, nowadays I keep the bills paid with other things in order to have the luxury of building one offs.

I also found accumulating laser cut blanks forced my hand a bit with what I spent my time on and slowed down the ability to evolve design (as I worked off the ‘stock’ I’d invested in.
 

terrier1

Well-Known Member
Surely if you are having a custom made you should tell the knifemaker what you want. Yes get his advice on something. When I had my Stuart Mitchell made I went and spoke to him in person and discussed want I wanted. Two things to think about is are you going to be using it or are you buying it to look at. Made to be used.
 

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John Gryphon

Well-Known Member
Some of it comes down to purely aesthetic considerations.
Yes for sure but as far as functional working knives there isnt much that can be changed imo.

I bet this is a real **** to clean lol and would slip out of your hand easy as with a bit of blood on it.

knife feather.jpg
 
There’s some truth in that for sure, the ‘improvements’ we can make are minor and subjective. Some of it comes down to purely aesthetic considerations.
Aren't a lot of these 'custom' knives laser cut from a template?
I purchased a 'custom' knife when I went to Montana, I had a look on Todd's website and ordered the knife after looking at the of wood available, he sent me photo samples, his blades are hand made, not laser cut, I was a happy boy with my choice, and to be honest it's what sent me down the DIY knife making route, of which I am improving, but I am nowhere near the standard of the OP knives having seen them in the hand, quality work.

So for me, with a little bit of knowledge, if I were to order a bespoke 'custom' knife I would look here take a look at the templates, discuss my requirements with you, and then talk handles, whether that be synthetic or wood.

Cheers

Richard
 
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