Keep­ing sharp

THE BLADE SHOW IN AT­LANTA IS THE UL­TI­MATE IN CUT­LERY BUT AUCK­LAND’S GET­TING A TASTE OF THE AC­TION TOO

The Shed - - News - By Brent Sandow

Ev­ery June I ex­hibit at the Blade Show in At­lanta, the big­gest knife show in the world, and af­ter­wards visit and work with fel­low knife mak­ers in the US. This year my host was Jerry McClure, a very tal­ented knife maker from Ok­la­homa.

The At­lanta Blade Show is the world’s largest cut­lery show, which is open to the pub­lic for three days in early June, with some 750 ex­hibits deal­ing in ev­ery­thing cut­lery re­lated, with stands from com­mer­cial knife com­pa­nies, cus­tom knife mak­ers, knife-mak­ing sup­pli­ers, tool­ing, and en­gi­neer­ing sup­pli­ers. There’s noth­ing cut­lery re­lated that you can’t get, whether it is car­bon fi­bre, ex­otic han­dle ma­te­rial, or the lat­est grinders. Ev­ery­thing for fans of knives is here.

I al­ways like to set up my stand on the Thurs­day, as it gives me a chance to not only whizz around and catch up with old friends and see all the lat­est trends but also have chance to pick up the best han­dle ma­te­ri­als and other sup­plies that I need my­self be­fore the doors open to the pub­lic on the Fri­day.

It was a hec­tic and very suc­cess­ful show. We left At­lanta on the Sun­day af­ter­noon to head to Jerry’s in Nor­man, Ok­la­homa, an 11-hour drive.

Af­ter re­cov­er­ing from the jour­ney, we spent some days in his work­shop forg­ing Da­m­as­cus bil­lets, and we man­aged to fin­ish a small kitchen-style knife from one of the Da­m­as­cus bil­lets that we made.

The com­pleted one is made up of a 5160 hard­ened core with soft lay­ers of rod iron and nickel each side. The han­dle is am­boyna burl. The other one we worked on is much the same — I just need to han­dle it.

Jerry has an in­ter­est­ing set up, as he has four sep­a­rate shops — namely the forg­ing area, ma­chine shop, grind­ing room, and

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