Why I don't work on knives myself

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ILikeStilettos
Posts: 1297
Joined: Tue Jan 28, 2014 3:36 pm
Location: Norman, Oklahoma, USA

Why I don't work on knives myself

Postby ILikeStilettos » Thu Jul 20, 2017 2:23 am

My good friend, Duncan, hooked me up with this one through the auction. The price was right, and I figured that Duke could correct the poor condition.

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It was scaled in some kind of rubbery stuff and it showed plenty of scars.

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The back side was just as bad.

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It had a nice sharp stamp, but lots of scratches and it sort of marginally worked if you shook it a little. The plan was to pretty it up a lot. Everything was oxidized and the return spring for the blade release was badly deformed. To operate these knives, you flip the trap door aside with your thumb and then point it down and press the button. The blade should slip out freely and lock. To close the knife, you point it up, press the button and the blade drops in fully so that the trap door can close. The bale seems to indicate that these were some kind of military equipment.

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The trap door turned out to be cast pot metal with a miniscule and broken spring. Duke told me he would do his best, but he didn't hold high hopes for a knife that was so cheaply made and beaten up. He couldn't do anything about the trap door, but he got the rest working pretty well and shined up the blade. He couldn't get rid of a few deep scratches and he was trying to preserve the stamp for me. By this time he had decided that repairing knives was a whole lot less fun than building them, so he good naturedly said that he would not be doing any more projects like this for me.

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After consulting with the forum, particularly Jerryk25, Duke attempted to wind his own tension spring for the firing mechanism.

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This turned out to be a really instructive phase of the project. Duke is confident now that he can create any coil spring he needs.

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I think he did a great job with the spring.

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So here's the redone knife, now scaled in some great streaky bovine with flush NS pins and no bale. We collaborated on the shape and pinning and it looked really nice. Look carefully at the point and you will see it's a bit blunted - this was the start of the down hill path for me.

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I've been on hiatus from the forums for a while and I am just trying to catch up. The knife was sitting in my office and apparently I left it open. My grandson was visiting and I was moving stuff around to set up a video game for him, when the knife got knocked to the floor. Little did I realize at the time that it had landed point first and hit the concrete slab under the carpet.

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A couple of more weeks went by and I finally got a chance to take photographs. Where did that blunted point come from? Then I remembered dropping it. Even worse, now it wouldn't close at all. Pretty soon I realized that the blade had warped. As I was bringing Duke up to date, he suggested that the blade was pretty soft and I should just bend it back. As a matter of fact, I had tried to do that very thing, but I couldn't seem to apply enough pressure where the bend was. So I wrapped the blade in some shop cloths and clamped the tang side down with a vice-grip and started to twist the tip with some channel locks ... then I heard the snap. Scheisse! I broke a big hunk of the tip off, and what was left still wouldn't close. At that juncture, I realized the knife was beyond hope, and it's a testament to my heavy handed ineptitude.

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In this shot and the previous one you can see the line where it snapped. I kept the piece secured with a bit of clear tape, because I still needed to take pictures. I'm pretty good with the computer stuff, but I am a real klutz when doing anything beyond shinning these up with Flitz. When people ask what kind of knives I make, I am quick to point out that I am a collector and operate behind the computer ... not in the work shop.

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So that's the story on this one, a waste of time and money, and I ruined an old knife. I also do brain surgery and heart transplants at very economical prices. Call now to schedule an appointment!

(All images are being hosted by http://www.imgbox.com.
Dave Sause
oldandfat@cox.net
(405) 694-3690

"And you're telling me this because, somehow, I look like I give a shit?"

"Let a smile be your umbrella and you're gonna get your dumb ass wet."

gravknife
Posts: 651
Joined: Fri Dec 11, 2015 9:34 pm

Re: Why I don't work on knives myself

Postby gravknife » Thu Jul 20, 2017 6:15 am

Dave
Im sorry to hear this happened after investing money into the knife .
For what its worth its a knife i covet being gravity based and german post war and i think you may be able to pick up another eickhorn 63 blade ,as i have seen them from time to time .
Wether or not they fit is a risk i was going to take as the ones i have seen are always separate handle only /blade only.
As a collector of militaria i would have kept the rubber handles even if poor as part of the knifes life but as a now switchblade collector i can see where your ideas were going and the scales looked beautiful.A handsome knife.

Thanks for the heads up on these knives build quality , and for the great interna/external workings photos that ill definitely need if i can ever get one of these.

I cant believe the blade snapped like that as they look pretty thick and well made the ones that i have seen but military knives go through a lot ,and even more sometimes in civilian life ,when people use them as throwing knives or screwdrivers,pry bars.

I hope your well anyway Dave .....you certainly have the best knives to cheer you up when unavoidable mishaps like this happen.
"Nothing ventured nothing gained " and you have certainly had more excellent ventures than bad.

Btw i'll leave the heart transplant for now even though i could do with one ,but knife design and advice you're the man i'll contact. :)

All the best mate

Ian

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ILikeStilettos
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Joined: Tue Jan 28, 2014 3:36 pm
Location: Norman, Oklahoma, USA

Re: Why I don't work on knives myself

Postby ILikeStilettos » Thu Jul 20, 2017 12:53 pm

Thanks for the words of consolation, Ian, although they were really unnecessary. People asking me how I do things is a perennial question and I grabbed the opportunity to explain graphically where my talents do not manifest!

Bill was the first to point out just what I had sacrificed, but knowing he and I having different sweet spots, he didn't make it sound like a sermon, nor did you. When folks from the other school of thought wax poetic about some antique it leaves me rather bored, but there is no use in getting upset. It's the differences of opinion and approach that make this community strong. I can like and respect Bill, without thinking I need to convert him to my side, no more than I to his.

Even beyond my lack of appreciation for oldies, gravity knives are generally temperamental and prone to binding up unless you go to great lengths to keep the blade from moving in any direction but horizontal, and if you eliminate all the play then you increase the friction. If you think about it, side kickers only require space for non-blade components on one side, and then offset the pivot to have a handle as or more narrow than the blade. Plus the pivot acts like an axle to keep the motion dead straight. In an OTF, the handle has to be bigger on both sides of the blade AND the length. OTF's always look to me like there is too much handle in comparison to the blade. I will shortly publish my treatise on the Nadle, wherein these issues become painfully obvious.

Good to hear from you, as always, my friend. If you ever want to tackle a blade transplant, I have one I will donate to the cause.
Dave Sause
oldandfat@cox.net
(405) 694-3690

"And you're telling me this because, somehow, I look like I give a shit?"

"Let a smile be your umbrella and you're gonna get your dumb ass wet."

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john
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Re: Why I don't work on knives myself

Postby john » Thu Jul 20, 2017 2:11 pm

Hi Dave,
A lot of work time effort energy patients love and care when into the rebuild. It's too bad about the snap, but stuff happens. Now the knife has a very special history and an interesting story to tell. By the way it looks fabulous!
Did Duke wrap the wire on his drill press? The spring looked perfect.
John
Your friend on the web's most friendly community on knives and blades,
John

Massachusetts Where Everything is Illegal or Taxed

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natcherly
Connoisseur dei Coltelli
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Re: Why I don't work on knives myself

Postby natcherly » Thu Jul 20, 2017 4:08 pm

What a bummer.

One lesson learned, among many, is to always pick a real thick carpet pad.

All kidding aside, I guess you can chalk this up to experience as further work, disassemble, weld blade, fix misalignment issue, etc., etc. would be prohibitive. On to the next project!

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ILikeStilettos
Posts: 1297
Joined: Tue Jan 28, 2014 3:36 pm
Location: Norman, Oklahoma, USA

Re: Why I don't work on knives myself

Postby ILikeStilettos » Thu Jul 20, 2017 8:05 pm

john wrote:Hi Dave,
A lot of work time effort energy patients love and care when into the rebuild. It's too bad about the snap, but stuff happens. Now the knife has a very special history and an interesting story to tell. By the way it looks fabulous!
Did Duke wrap the wire on his drill press? The spring looked perfect.
John

Mini lathe.
Dave Sause
oldandfat@cox.net
(405) 694-3690

"And you're telling me this because, somehow, I look like I give a shit?"

"Let a smile be your umbrella and you're gonna get your dumb ass wet."

User avatar
ILikeStilettos
Posts: 1297
Joined: Tue Jan 28, 2014 3:36 pm
Location: Norman, Oklahoma, USA

Re: Why I don't work on knives myself

Postby ILikeStilettos » Thu Jul 20, 2017 8:06 pm

natcherly wrote:What a bummer.

One lesson learned, among many, is to always pick a real thick carpet pad.

All kidding aside, I guess you can chalk this up to experience as further work, disassemble, weld blade, fix misalignment issue, etc., etc. would be prohibitive. On to the next project!

At least I learned something about gravity knife construction!
Dave Sause
oldandfat@cox.net
(405) 694-3690

"And you're telling me this because, somehow, I look like I give a shit?"

"Let a smile be your umbrella and you're gonna get your dumb ass wet."

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novice
Posts: 94
Joined: Fri Apr 20, 2012 3:26 pm

Re: Why I don't work on knives myself

Postby novice » Sat Dec 02, 2017 10:47 pm

Condolences even though months beyond the sting. I have that exact knife, I believe with a '59 date as well. It is indeed military, a 1st version German Bundeswehr paratrooper knife ("Bundeswehr Kappmesser Fallschirmjäger 1. Version nur Griffstück Eickhorn 1959"). They are not too hard to find but you'll have the best luck buying one out of Europe.


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