Friday, December 02, 2022

A New Knife

As part of recent vacation, we stopped at a number of smaller "tourist" sites - the sorts of places that have an attraction and a store attached with things to procure.  99% of the time I am immune to such places, perhaps at best buying a postcard or a magnet for The Ravishing Mrs. TB (who collects the things).  But on this trip, something different happened:  My eye was caught by a knife.

I can count on one hand the number of times in my adult life where, walking into a store, an item called out to me with an intensity that was too loud to ignore. This was one of those times.


I am a sword guy.  Knives for me are simply things that I need as tools to perform specific tasks and thus have largely a utilitarian function.  That said, something about the color and work on the hilt stuck with me.


The manufacturer is Ken Richardson - which, as it turns, out is a real person and a real company.  Mind you, his knives are also available in Bass Pro Shops and Cabela's, so the chances he personally worked on this one are rather remote.

The blade itself measures about 5" and it has a fine weight to it (one thing I have come to appreciate from Iaijutsu is balance and overall weight).



The best part?  The knife was 40% off the "offer price" of a little over $110.  If I did my calculations from the website correctly, I got a $160-$180 style knife (full price) for about $70.  That is a deal indeed.


Of course (me being me), the first thing I did when I got home was cleaned it. It was not in terrible shape, but benefitted from a bit of Noxin to remove one or two tarnished spots and cleaning it with uchiko powder and choji oil.  

It is not often that I walk away from a purchase feeling like I got both a deal and something I wanted, but for once both occurred.

17 comments:

  1. Nylon123:18 AM

    It is a bit early for math yet paying $70 for a $160 dollar knife is more than 40% off it seems no? That might the type of knife you display up on the wall TB.

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    1. Nylon12 - As usual, what I was saying in my mind did not come out fully in the text. In point of fact, the knife was already "priced down" at $117, so I got it for 40% off of that price. Had I ordered it off the website (something that would never happen in a million years), I would have paid $150 to $160.

      Thank you for the suggestion on display - I have never displayed a knife before.

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  2. Anonymous3:28 AM

    If the items speaks to you, then that is worth more than the monetary value placed on it. I'm sure your new knife should get some notice from visitors. Some may want to get 'handsy' if placed too far away from close inspection. I've noticed that ornate items tend to get that type of behavior.

    That knife model reminds me of a knife sold at Rigid USA, many years ago. Former members of the Buck knife company. It is the handle that reminds me of that company.

    Cool knife !

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    1. This is true with Japanese swords as well - when I have had mine down for display, it comes with a series of instructions (one cannot repeat "Please do not touch the blade" too many times").

      I have absolutely no experience with knives as collectibles (or even things I buy regularly). The fact that this one struck me so much was fascinating.

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  3. That is nice. A strong calling and a bargain. Well done.
    Is that turquoise in the handle?

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    1. Thank you John! I think it is turquoise in the handle - again, something that surprises me as I am not typically a turquoise "guy".

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  4. I can definitely see the appeal. Good buy. Dan used to collect knives, so I was interested in following the link you provided and exploring the website. Yours is considerably more elaborate than what they currently sell, so I'm guessing it would have originally fetched a higher price. Mr. Richardson appears to have passed away in 2015, but his family carries on the knife making tradition.

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    1. Leigh - I was rather surprised by the difference in appearance from the knives on the website and what I purchased (not that I was complaining at all).

      I own any number of wooden training weapons, but only three shinken (true swords) for training - partially because the more you have the more you have to care for, and partially because three is likely all I really need.

      I finally found a contact point with Dan! This makes me happy.

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  5. Anonymous6:32 AM

    Given that it's a "tool," albeit a beautiful one, I'm sure it would appreciate being used. Nope, I'm not opening the can o' worms about objects having souls or spirits, but rather speaking to the value we add to our tools through using them. Suffice to say that I value many of the tools I own for their intended purpose, but especially cherish those that I know were used by my fathers and grandfathers.

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  6. Another similarity we have. I have bought several knifes over the years after they speak to me. That is a beauty!

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    1. Cool Ed! I have not really ever had a knife catch my eye like this one.

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    2. I've always wonder why they speak to me as I don't regularly use a knife anymore since I left the confines of the family farm. The knives that I bought spend their time in a drawer and only rarely admired. I've always figured it was a remnant desire from the days of hunter/gatherers.

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    3. Ed, there is a something about a well made tool that has value in a way that exceeds its usefulness, a combination of the artistry to construct it and the care that made that artistry.

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  7. Very pretty knife. I had a tool sing to me like that. And I got a smoking deal on it too. I need to get it out and make sure it's clean. I put things like that away to keep them pristine, and take them out to pet them. I think that's a failing at times. Everything I have is for use. And they do get used. Some things are used for eye candy. ;)

    A thing of beauty is a joy forever.

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    1. Thank you STxAR. The deal was surprising to me - and dumb luck; I was going to buy it before I found out it was on sale. Of course, the first thing I did as soon as I got home and unpacked was clean it.

      Yes, some things are eye candy - and joy forever.

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  8. That is really beautiful, TB. My brother had a nice collection of knives, though none pretty like this. His were all purchased for using (or maybe one or two for some kind of competition - I think a couple were for throwing - how or why I thought that, I don't remember). Showing how sheltered I am, it was the first personal knife collection I'd ever encountered. Most found happy homes with other knife collectors.

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    1. Becki, my nephew collects them. They are more utilitarian items for me - or at least I thought they were. Now I have at least one for looks and use.

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