Thursday, April 10, 2014

Great Eastern Cutlery Magnum #22 Small Gunstock

Big knife in a little package!  We have received several of the Tidioute Magnum variations and I really like this knife if you need a sub 3" model.  Very stout for the size and has good action for the thickness of the backsprings.
The Great Eastern Magnum has not been a big hit with the customer base, but I expect it probably comes in a little pricey for many.  I suspect as they get a little more exposure on the forums, there will be more people taking a look at them.  But I did not stock up because my Early Reserve demand was rather low.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Great Eastern Cutlery Missouri Trader Lockback #42

Great Eastern is putting out another run of their mountain man sized lockback this week in all three brands.  Thus, there will be a stainless run as well.  Although they did severely under estimate the demand for this pattern the second time around and will probably follow up soon with another run to satisfy the customer base.  This run of the Great Eastern Cutlery Trader is built very nice, as was the first run.  I do believe though that there may be a little more front/back movement in this run.  It is not noticeable to most people, but for those that get out the kid gloves it is there on those I have handled so far.

A great pattern for those that have use for this size / style.  Below is a quick video look at the cocobolo model.

Monday, February 24, 2014

Custom Forged Knives : New Brand on the Block

My market has always been pocket knives, and by a large majority slipjoints.  And not just any old pocket knife, but I stay very close to the American and German lines.  And generally those that I feel are not only a value at the price, but have a good possibility of being a knife that our kids and grandchildren might enjoy collecting some day.
So, when I agreed with an old friend to start carrying a new brand of fixed blades, I was way out of my comfort zone (and still am).  So I had him send me a few to look at and see if it might be something I could branch into in a small way.  Cue Custom Forged Knives.  So, Jason sent me the story behind them (won't waste your time here, story is in the store) and it is an interesting read. 
Now, don't get me wrong, I trust Jason.  But I have learned not to ever stake your reputation on someone else's sales pitch.  So the first thing I did was send a D2 and a Damascus version of the Tracker knife to two gentlemen that I have a lot of respect.  The first was a gentleman that has many years of all aspects of knife production for old school factories.  The second was a gentleman that is an expert in heat treating and steel content / testing.  Since I didn't ask either to use their names - I won't.
Sure enough, every thing I was told was verified by the experts.  Matter of fact they were quite impressed with not only the value being presented, but how accurately the heat treating had been done on the samples.  The D2 came in at 58+ in hardness and the Damascus was 58-60 hardness.  Damascus is a little harder to test and there are a lot of very questionable damascus variations out there; so I was very pleased with the results.
Thus, I am going to start stocking more Custom Forged Knives as I can get my hands on them and would love to hear your opinions if you have experience with them.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Great Eastern Cutlery Viper Swayback Jack #47

Just got in the newest pattern from GEC, and have to say I like it.  The Great Eastern Viper may not take over as my favorite pattern, but it is a sweet little knife.  Both the Tidioute and Northfield Viper lines are nice; the build is tight, and the action is near perfect.  Not so tight that it breaks a thumbnail, but enough pressure you don't have to worry about accidental closing (unless you are being careless).

All in all the Viper is a well built and great feeling Swayback Jack pattern, and a great addition the the Great Eastern Cutlery lineup.  As usual the Tidioute Cutlery models will be the simply elegant series and the Northfield Cutlery will have a few more bells and whistles.  They can be found on CollectorKnives.  Below is a quick video look.


Thursday, January 30, 2014

Case Pocket Knives : Back on track

There will be some that disagree, but Case XX Cutlery knives has driven the American collectible knife hobby for 40 years now.  Sure Case has had some mis-steps and have changed hands several times.  Let's just call a spade a spade; it is not a lucrative market.  In trying to skip some quality steps they nearly killed their own brand in the early 1980's - but try and get a Case "new grind" (design change in this timeframe) for a reasonable price these days.  I don't know what happened in the early 2000's, but Case knives had a marked decline in quality for a few years then as well.

But in the last 4 - 5 years I have seen an increase in quality while, for the most part, holding their prices somewhat steady.  During this same time Queen has increased pricing enough to leapfrog Case Cutlery, and GEC has come about which is significantly higher (but on a different product tier as well).  There are still some Case knife patterns that I feel are over-priced on a value level; but luckily I don't have to carry them all.  CollectorKnives can pick and choose where we feel the best value resides in the Case pocket knife product line.

I hope this trend continues and we are talking about the value in Case knives for many years to come.


Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Great Eastern Cutlery #09 Esquire

This month Great Eastern Cutlery has produced a very nice little ( 2 7/8" closed ) gentleman's pocket knife.  They have dubbed it the Esquire.   It weighs in around 1oz and would fit rather well in a watch pocket if you didn't want to drop it in with the change.

Typically smaller knives have thin backsprings and rather weak action; but the GEC Esquire is made like most Great Eastern models with good snap as well as fit.  I don't presume that it is easy to make a large knife, but it amazes me how these folks make such a fine smaller knife.

Slab choices are several different acrylics (grey pearl, white pearl, kryptonite, western sunset, blue denim, blue corduroy, st pattys day, pumkin patch), ebony & bocote wood, chestnut and rust red bone.  And these are just the Tidioute models.  Northfields will consist of blue & pink abalone looking glass, calico bone, cocobolo wood, genuine mother of pearl, LVS Abalone, stag, and snakewood.

If you are looking for that knife that will disappear in your pocket or fit in those smaller watch pockets, you might take a look at the Great Eastern Cutlery Esquire.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Making a profession of putting the screws to people

We don't set up at Gun / Knife shows for a multitude of reasons, although know many reputable dealers that do all the time.  But I go to quite a few shows just to visit and keep an eye on the market.  One thing that one has to notice is that, in general, the prices on collectible knives at these shows ranges from the high side to the utterly ridiculous.

Don't get me wrong CollectorKnives gets a lot of business from folks that go to shows to sample what is availabe and then go home to find them priced at a value.  And I understand that there is some overhead to setting up at the shows.  But, whether out of ignorance or simple greed, I have noticed that there are full time and part time dealers that are simply trying to put the screws to some unsuspecting buyer. 

There is a part time dealer that I know fairly well that would spit-shine his knives and put them in very nice little display cases before heading off to the shows.  He doesn't mark most of them such that he can vary the price when asked depending on what the buyer looks like he can afford.  Also, he will walk around the show to see if he has a new Case knife that nobody else has yet; and if so will jack the price up 30-40% on it solely for that reason.  He makes a little money here and there but can't figure out why he doesn't get much return business.....

Just last night I received a note from a gentleman that had been to a show in Oregon.  He is retired military and is living on his pension from injuries while serving.  At the show he saw a really nice knife that he really wanted to purchase; it was marked $225.  He didn't know much about it, but negotiated this dealer down to $200 and purchased it.  When he got home he wanted to look into the knife a little and after a couple minutes searching came to my website.  He was very upset to see the exact same knife for $79.  Not only does he have every right to be upset, but this kind of predatory pricing should upset the entire industry.  He gave me the name of the seller, but I don't recognize them.

Customers understand that the dealer is in the business to make a profit, and they respect that.  But these dealers that take advantage of customers that sacrificed for what money they do have, are souring this great hobby for everyone.