His and hers wootz kitchen knife set

Discussion in 'Knives' started by Bruno, May 15, 2018 at 11:02 PM.

  1. Bruno

    Bruno Administrator Staff Member

    This is a set of 2 wootz kitchen knives that was made on request for a professional chef. The big one is an 8" chef knife, the little one is 6". The handles are Juma Dragon. The guard plate is stabilized fossil mammoth molar. In the background you see an example of the wootz ingot that I started with. The pattern does not always show up well so I included closeups of the big one. The wootz was smelted by Krzysztof Rusek

    The colors may seem strange but this was a request from the chef and if I recall correctly, these were the favorite colors of him and her. The molar was my choice. He didn't request anything special but I had those 2 pieces lying around, waiting for just a project like this so I took the opportunity to use them.

    20180515_WootzBigChef_Back.jpg 20180515_WootzBigChef_Back_Closeup.jpg 20180515_WootzBigChef_Front.jpg 20180515_WootzBigChef_Front_Closeup.jpg 20180515_WootzLittleChef_Back.jpg 20180515_WootzLittleChef_Front.jpg
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  2. Mike Blue

    Mike Blue New Member

    Not bad knives for a razor guy...LOL
  3. Bruno

    Bruno Administrator Staff Member

    Hah. Thx Mike. I was pretty happy with the overall geometry.
    You know, the most difficult part imo is making sure that were the blade goes into the handle, there is no gap or visible ridge. In terms of trickiness, that's the most difficult part of making hidden tang knives.
    paul76 likes this.
  4. RezDog

    RezDog Member

    They are amazing.
    I have a hidden tang kitchen knife at home that is waiting for a handle, but it looks tricky.
  5. Bruno

    Bruno Administrator Staff Member

    The tricky part is removing only as much as needed from the guard plate to fit it perfectly to the tang of the knife, without removing so much that you see a visible gap where the knife goes into the handle. Metalwork aside, how well a handle connects to a knife is a major thing by which I judge the skill of a knifemaker.

    I was discussing this with Owen Bush in Gembloux last year. It was Owen and someone else. Can't remember who exactly. In any case, Owen makes a lot of nice damascus swords. So I look at the swords and the steel is very cool but after a quick glance at the steel I began to look really closely to that part of the handle. And Owen remarked that many people do the same thing but don't spend as much time looking at the sword as a whole.
    And we talked about how that is one of the major points for judges at knife shows as well.

    The reason I didn't really spend a lot of time looking at the sword is that -geometry aside which is a specialized field- the steel is nothing that I couldn't do myself, given the same equipment such as a hydraulic press and a powerhammer. I recognize the skill but it doesn't 'wow' me. The fine detail of how exactly the handle is attached, now that is imo one of the places where the men are separated from the boys, so to speak.
  6. geezer

    geezer Member

    Often, actually at all times, consistent, close attention to detail is the dividing line between skills and craftsmanship in any endeavor.
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  7. Mike Blue

    Mike Blue New Member

    Mastery is composed of one of two characteristics. The job is done exactly right from beginning to end anticipating all the possible mistakes and heading them off before they happen, finished with not one thing left to change, no wasted supplies, or time. Or, you learn how to hide all the mistakes, have all the time in the world and enjoying making dirt from the available materials.
    geezer likes this.
  8. Bruno

    Bruno Administrator Staff Member

    Many times, it's a combination of the 2. As I make more and more razors, more and more I can take the first path. Like hollow grinding for example.
    But many times, there is something that needs a bit of hiding or changing. Most often, this is because the forged blank doesn't 100% fit what I was trying to do.

    Btw, I think Owen mentioned that your Swedish friend is very good at getting the guard plate to fit. Didn't he win a couple of knife competitions?
  9. Mike Blue

    Mike Blue New Member

    Most of the makers I know are exceptional craftsmen/women.
    geezer likes this.

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