Thursday, February 21, 2013

This is getting serious

Every Day Carry design in 01 steel with micarta handles with my favorite carry load a 125gr JHP .357mag.
Same design in 01 with Bocote (back) and Wenge handles and mosaic pins.
Sheath are kydex wrapped in leather.

Wow, it has been a crazy year since Knives of Malta created its first truly custom knife. It was a very rough Warncliffe design heat treated in a homemade forge. Since that knife I have created dozens of blades and continue to get better with each one. This has only been possible from the amazing support of my friends and family. Thank You.

A certain unnamed individual that finds themselves in harm’s way quite often has really pushed the idea of Knives of Malta since I cranked out the first blade a year ago. Now I’m getting contacted by individuals that have access to any equipment they desire, and would like to add one of my creations to their kit. Wow, things are getting serious. As a result all of my knives will now be heat treated in a scientific kiln in the shop and each series will be tested to ensure proper Rc hardness is achieved. Up to this point my heat treating has been rudimentary but very successful with high carbon low alloy steels, this will also allow me to expand the steel types utilized. This also allows for larger knives to be created and uniformly heat treated. My inaugural run will be a slightly larger set of the Bushcraft Alaskan in 01 steel.

Knives of Malta will also be introducing our first set of handmade bench chisels and drawknives this year for those discerning woodworkers that believe tools should be something your grandkids fight over. The more I use hand tools in wood working, the more I’m addicted to them. Try it, they are exceedingly quiet to use.
My handplane collection keeps getting bigger.

Monday, February 4, 2013

A need unmet

8" Cleaver in 1095 HC etched blade, because I can.

It's always about the money, except when its not. As an ardent capitalist and business student this is an equation I struggle with constantly. As an American the bottom line is always on my mind, especially with my precious free time. But my equation into the value of tool making was broken, I was only looking at ones and zeros, red and black. The most important piece of the equation was missing until just recently.

My friend was relating an ambitious project he has in the works and stated, "It's not about if I want to make this happen, I have to make this happen." This project of his is so important that he has to get it out into the world and make it work. It isn't just a balance sheet, it is much more than that. How often do we approach an idea this way? That we feel it is up to us to turn concept into reality and not for economic value but for our own experience. If profit is the result, so be it, but the success or failure is not in the money, it's in the experience of creating.

This resonated deeply with me and I knew the minute he said it, it was what I had been failing to account for. Currently making tools is something I have to do. Could I simply buy equivalent tools? Yes, but you can't purchase the experience of honing your own skill and increasing your knowledge through hard work. To awake in the middle of the night with an idea that needs to be produced and following through from blank page to useful implement is a value far beyond a few dollars.

Turning theory into reality is what separates arm chair cowboys from bronc busters. It's not always about the money, sometimes it's just to know you can.

Destructive testing a KoM cleaver with a 4" blade in 1095 steel, so far it has resisted destruction.