Results 1 to 17 of 17

Thread: old Fixed Blade Sportsmans...

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    2,319

    old Fixed Blade Sportsmans...


    ADVERTISEMENT
    anybody collect these? Ive seen them offered from Utica, Imperial, Hammer, Camillus, Kent etc. Are they a decent knife? Did they ever come with anything other than the Plastic handle? Wood or Bone? Also seen some offered that dont have any stamp on them???
    Ive seen a few on ebay that come with a hatchet combo or a camp-king scout type folding knife, thought they looked pretty cool. I know nothing about fixed blade knives can Anybody shed any light on these. Would be appreciated
    thanks
    ivan

  2. #2
    Yes, they came in other materials, Plastics/cells seem most common, follow by bone, wood, and rarely stag.

    Generally, these were cheaper knives, but some nice ones were made, Camillus and its private label brands seem the nicest of the lot, followed by KA-BAR.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    2,319

    Bob Bowie...

    Quote Originally Posted by bob bowie View Post
    Yes, they came in other materials, Plastics/cells seem most common, follow by bone, wood, and rarely stag.

    Generally, these were cheaper knives, but some nice ones were made, Camillus and its private label brands seem the nicest of the lot, followed by KA-BAR.
    thanks, i have a rather stupid question but are the handles solid pieces of plastic or hollow (shells) ? I had a cheap fleamarket bowie when i was a kid and it had cheap plastic handles, hollow and any abuse and it would crack. Hope im making sense here. Trying to get an idea of general construction on these.
    Thanks again

  4. #4
    Better brands are solid, I haven't looked at a Imperial or Utica in a long time, but I think they're bit thicker hollow plastic.

  5. #5
    You mean these?



    The scout type knife by the one is a Kamp King that was part of a combo by Imperial that had a double sheath where the folder was in a pouch on the front for the fixed blade sheath.

    Common makers were Imperial (the H6 plain spine and the H7 which had serrations on the spine of the fish scaler kind,), Utica, and Outdoor. The Imperials were the thinnest, followed by the Utica, with the Outdoor being thickest and having more noticeable heft. There are others, but these are the only ones I know of have. I have a few more than those shown, but only a few. I've lucked out and managed to get both the H6 and H7 versions of the Imperials.

    From what I've been able to gather they were made mostly in the 40's and 50's, maybe even in the thirties. They rode on a lot of Boy Scouts belts and a fair number of fellows outdoors.

    Do a search of this folder and the Schrade forum for "Sportsman" or "Imperial Sportsman" and you will find a couple of good threads on them.

    Here are a two images of markings. An Outdoor Sportsman and an Utica Sportsman.



    These were also produced in an axe/knife combo. I have an unmarked ax, probably an Imperial by the feel and look, that had a sheath that was set for the combo. I've paired it up with a Utica for a user set. Not to long back I also picked up a very nice set by Outdoor that have excellent sheaths. I don't have any photos of them at the moment.

    I sharpened up one Imperial and one Utica. I'm working on an Outdoor, but it hasn't gotten to the edge I want yet. It is the thickest of the the three brands. The Imperial, and H7, takes a shaving edge as does the Utica. I've found the Utica to be the best balance between the three. I suspect it will hold an edge longer than the Imperial. The Utica also fits in that "just right" category. It is still light enough not to think about, but thick enough (compared to the Imperial) to feel solid.

    I too really like the look of them, and to date the prices in general. It seems more people are discovering them though as the final prices on eBay have edged just a little higher. I think they are pretty cool knives. I've no doubt they would give excellent service on the hip of a fellow camping, hunting, and fishing today as they did over a half-century ago. All without weighing your belt down. If, of course, like those fellows you knew how to use a knife for the job at hand. Whatever it might be.

    I also liked the style of sheaths most of them came with. It let you carry it on the right or left side. I am given to understand, and backed up by a knife in my stash, that at one time left side carry of the knife was quite common to keep the right side free for a handgun or whatever.

    This is about all I know of them. It isn't complete, but it's more than I knew when I got my first one.

    Always glad to see these cool, old knives getting some appreciation. Even if it does niggle the price up a little.

    Amos

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    2,319

    Amos...

    Quote Originally Posted by Amos Iron Wolf View Post
    You mean these?



    The scout type knife by the one is a Kamp King that was part of a combo by Imperial that had a double sheath where the folder was in a pouch on the front for the fixed blade sheath.

    Common makers were Imperial (the H6 plain spine and the H7 which had serrations on the spine of the fish scaler kind,), Utica, and Outdoor. The Imperials were the thinnest, followed by the Utica, with the Outdoor being thickest and having more noticeable heft. There are others, but these are the only ones I know of have. I have a few more than those shown, but only a few. I've lucked out and managed to get both the H6 and H7 versions of the Imperials.

    From what I've been able to gather they were made mostly in the 40's and 50's, maybe even in the thirties. They rode on a lot of Boy Scouts belts and a fair number of fellows outdoors.

    Do a search of this folder and the Schrade forum for "Sportsman" or "Imperial Sportsman" and you will find a couple of good threads on them.

    Here are a two images of markings. An Outdoor Sportsman and an Utica Sportsman.



    These were also produced in an axe/knife combo. I have an unmarked ax, probably an Imperial by the feel and look, that had a sheath that was set for the combo. I've paired it up with a Utica for a user set. Not to long back I also picked up a very nice set by Outdoor that have excellent sheaths. I don't have any photos of them at the moment.

    I sharpened up one Imperial and one Utica. I'm working on an Outdoor, but it hasn't gotten to the edge I want yet. It is the thickest of the the three brands. The Imperial, and H7, takes a shaving edge as does the Utica. I've found the Utica to be the best balance between the three. I suspect it will hold an edge longer than the Imperial. The Utica also fits in that "just right" category. It is still light enough not to think about, but thick enough (compared to the Imperial) to feel solid.

    I too really like the look of them, and to date the prices in general. It seems more people are discovering them though as the final prices on eBay have edged just a little higher. I think they are pretty cool knives. I've no doubt they would give excellent service on the hip of a fellow camping, hunting, and fishing today as they did over a half-century ago. All without weighing your belt down. If, of course, like those fellows you knew how to use a knife for the job at hand. Whatever it might be.

    I also liked the style of sheaths most of them came with. It let you carry it on the right or left side. I am given to understand, and backed up by a knife in my stash, that at one time left side carry of the knife was quite common to keep the right side free for a handgun or whatever.

    This is about all I know of them. It isn't complete, but it's more than I knew when I got my first one.

    Always glad to see these cool, old knives getting some appreciation. Even if it does niggle the price up a little.

    Amos
    Thank you so much, ive come across a few on ebay but aside from recognizing the brand names i had no clue if they were worth picking up.
    Excellent history lesson thank you! I may bite the bullet and pick one up
    ivan

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Southeast Idaho
    Posts
    32,874
    Here is a thread from the Camillus forum about their version of the Sportsman pattern. Tom WIlliams (CAMCO) identified it as a SFO for Woolworth's and gave the pattern number as #5665 introduced in 1939. As the name on the SFO implies, it was also chrome plated.

    The Camillus version was even provided to our armed services at the beginning of WWII before the heavier knives could be tooled and shipped. One has bone handles... very nice. The other is wood with no guard and an earlier pattern. http://www.bladeforums.com/forums/sh...ight=sportsman

    I bought the Imperial version, HK11 recently on ebay. It seems these are still, IMHO, quite underappreciated and underpriced.

    Here are threads on the Imperials:
    http://www.bladeforums.com/forums/sh...ight=Sportsman
    http://www.bladeforums.com/forums/sh...ight=Sportsman

    They are "plain ground" which isn't very sexy, and smallish. Nevertheless, I like the pattern. These retailed for about a dollar in the mid to late 1950's. Several generations of boys owned these as their first fixed blade knives. And they still serve well. 1095HC steel may go out of style, but not usefulness. This is my latest, an Imperial Hammer Brand. You will notice it drew no other bids.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...0%3D%26fvi%3D1

    Codger

    PS- I like these and the Outers pattern too! Can you tell?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    2,319
    Codger, were some of these unmarked? Were there knock offs of these, like everything else? Thanks for sharing, not too long ago i saw one of the dual camp knife folder/sportsman but didnt know anything about it, let it go...
    thanks
    ivan

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Southeast Idaho
    Posts
    32,874
    Once these were popular (inexpensive, light and user friendly), most U.S. knifemakers adopted the pattern and made a version. The "unmarked" ones may have been SFO's by a leading maker who put merchant's etches on the blades, the etches not surviving. I cannot say for certain without holding and comparing a particular knife to known examples in my collection.

    Very few knife designs were actually patented (design patent), but a lot of features were (Utility patent). Both types of patents had a limited lifespan after which anyone was free to use them. For instance, the Marbles #46 Woodcraft was patented in 1916. By 1930 the patent had expired and the pattern was produced by Case, Schrade Cutlery Co., Remington, PAL, Aerial, dang near every pre-war name out there as well as a lot of cutleries in Europe. I don't know that the term "knockoffs" really applies. Though sometimes unpatented unique designs were simply honored by the cutlery industry as a whole. Henry Baer's 1974 Sharpfinger design is one that comes to mind. It was their all-time best selling fixed blade right up until the company's bankruptcy in 2004, and with the exception of some middle eastern "knockoffs", no one made much of an effort to duplicate it. All bets were off after October of 2004, and since then dozens of U.S. as well as foriegn cutleries have made either "improved" versions or direct copies. Only the name is copyright protected and owned by TBLLC.

    Codger

  10. #10
    Dang, Codger. I haven't been sailing the bay lately or I'd a tried to keep that one near San Antonio. Nice one! I haven't got a Hammer brand yet.

    You got "inexpensive, light and user friendly" right on the nose. That still rings true for them today, 50+ years later.

    Now, Ivankerley, if you happen to see one of those, either single, or as a combo set, in really nice shape you just let me know and I'll take the risk for you on it. If Codger doesn't beat me to it. <G>

    Of course you have to get several so you have some for your collection and duplicates you can use.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    2,319

    esco tempered fixed blade...

    thought this looked interesting so i picked it up, no maker but has esco tempered carbon steel on the blade? Found an Esco company out of Portland Oregon, foundry started in 1913 still around today, wonder if its the same?? dunno
    Nice little knife, a bit smaller than i'd envisioned then again i have pretty big hands, solid and surprisingly sharp, nice solid handle to, nothing loose, sheath is in pretty good shape also. Even though its nothing terribly fancy i like it and cant believe how cheap some of these are going for, at least for now. Lets hope i dont start accumulating these
    ivan

  12. #12
    Here's a link to some of the Camillus Military models: http://www.usmilitaryknives.com/current_knotes.htm .

    Scroll down.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Southeast Idaho
    Posts
    32,874
    Quote Originally Posted by Amos Iron Wolf View Post
    Dang, Codger. I haven't been sailing the bay lately or I'd a tried to keep that one near San Antonio. Nice one! I haven't got a Hammer brand yet.

    You got "inexpensive, light and user friendly" right on the nose. That still rings true for them today, 50+ years later.

    Now, Ivankerley, if you happen to see one of those, either single, or as a combo set, in really nice shape you just let me know and I'll take the risk for you on it. If Codger doesn't beat me to it. <G>

    Of course you have to get several so you have some for your collection and duplicates you can use.
    The Imperial Hammer Brand Sportsman is odd in that the blade is polished and chromed. It led a pampered life and has only a few light scratches on the blade, not user type scratches. It has it's factory edge on blade right (tang stamped on blade left), and the sheath shows only storage wear. The only negative I could find was the missing matching camper utility knife.


    I've since nabbed one of those on the bay for the atounding sum of $5.50. It doesn't appear to be as mint as the fixed blade, but it does look good and the blades appear full.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...MEWN:IT&ih=020

    Both of these are easier to find in the plain Imperial stamping rather than the earlier Hammer Brand. I have a couple of the Imperial Kombos, none with sheaths as good.

    Last edited by Codger_64; 11-03-2007 at 09:53 AM.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Gentry, AR
    Posts
    1,610
    Growing up my Dad had one of the Utica's. I have it now. Somehow the tip got broken off when I was a kid (I think me and my brother were throwing it at a tree).

    I also have found another one just like I remember my dads.

    Cool knives!!

    Tom

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Toledo, Ohio, United States
    Posts
    58
    A few weeks back I found a Utica "Sportsman" fixed blade knife at an antique shop for around $10. The knife is in decent shape, looks good for the most part, but beat up enough to not feel bad about actually using it. I really love these knives of this type and from this era. They are not spendy, but they are not "cheap" either...if that makes sense? I have no trouble getting an edge that I'm happy with on them with minimum effort.
    Now if the sheath were only in decent shape LOL. The leather is about the "break" LOL, need to find someone who makes cheap reproductions someday. I'll try and remember to post a photo in a few days.
    Mark

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    The Brink of Insanity
    Posts
    1,533
    Hi,

    Please do post some photos. I think these simple, inexpensive knives are still under appreciated. I have a nearly used up Imperial around here. It belonged to a Great Uncle of mine. And I do remember him using it during hunting trips in my childhood.

    Dale
    If you think you understand what is going on, you haven't been paying attention.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Toledo, Ohio, United States
    Posts
    58
    This is a bad photo, and my camera just had it's battery die so I can't re-do tonight, but here is my Utica "Sportsman". The knife is in "decent" shape, even if the photo does not convey that LOL! The sheath on the other hand....it is dead. I'd love to have a replacement made, but for a $12 knife, not certain if it is worth it?
    Mark


Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •