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GEC #79 Workhorse (single spring/2-blade model): Opinions, Info., Photos?

Discussion in 'Traditional Folders and Fixed Blades' started by AFAustin, Jul 10, 2013.

  1. AFAustin

    AFAustin Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 8, 2004
    I haven't seem much on the GEC #79 Workhorse---the single spring, 2-blade model (not the 3-spring, 3-blade #79 Montana Workhorse Whittler, which has been much discussed and justly praised).

    I would appreciate any opinions, information, or photos of it. While it lacks the heft and great secondary blades of the Montana version, I can see some possible advantages in that it would be lighter and slimmer in the pocket, and the secondary blade wouldn't ride as high, providing a more comfortable grip when using the primary.

    I'm also curious if any more scale flavors will be offered, if anyone knows? On GEC's website, I see only 4 Tidioute models and a lone Northfield: http://greateasterncutlery.net/blog/patterns/79-workhorse-whittler/ I also see a Northfield in Blood Red Bone on a dealer's website (but not on GEC's website---is that common?).


    Last edited: Jul 11, 2013
  2. Shaggy

    Shaggy Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 30, 2012
    Andrew, the #79 Workhorse (2-blade) was also offered in Northfield variations using stag (burnt and natural). Regarding the Blood Red version: it seems from time to time GEC will make a handful of variations of a current production pattern using different or new scale materials, then distribute them among the various retailers. Usually, there's no more than 2 to 4 of these unofficial variations for each material; they will NOT show up on GEC's new product release page.

  3. Will Power

    Will Power

    Jan 18, 2007
    I'm very interested in this too. Wonder what the thickness is?

    My dealer hasn't (yet..) got the Ivory Bone which is what I'm after. I was wondering about the Northfields Bone too, GEC hasn't been updating their 'what's happening ' lately so this may explain the confusion.
  4. rma100


    Nov 12, 2011
    The Blood Red Jigged Bone is a "standard" release in this pattern. What we are seeing is that sometimes, GEC's New Release page can be incomplete. And sometimes, not all Distributors stock all the handle variations on a given pattern. One "short run" handle in this pattern was Abalone Looking Glass,5 pieces. Long Gone.
  5. knifeswapper

    knifeswapper Dealer / Materials Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    Sep 3, 2004
    Sometimes the factory gets a little lazy and does not put all the pictures up, especially if they already have all of them sold by the time of production. Sometimes dealers get lazy (me) by using the factory pictures until I get a chance to drag all of the equipment out and take my own pictures. And sometime dealers get lazy (me) and just don't list things at all for several days. ( I am sitting here holding Abalone LG, Buffalo Horn, and Brown Canvas versions ). I always stock some of everything the factory offers me, but use a couple tools (Early Reserve & Early Bird) to gauge interest and help me set a final stock quantity of each variant.

    Many times GEC makes so many really nice patterns in a short amount of time that the customers simply get caught short of funds or too focused on something else at the time. I know, as a dealer, I am in the same boat sometimes. But when I saw this pattern was coming out I was fairly un-impressed simply by it's lack of any grand uniqueness. But when I got a few in my hands I caught myself expecting to see an 80 year old Cattaraugus stamp when opening the blade - it just screams old school cutlery. Both in the pattern and in the flow.

    Northfield's also included the African Blackwood not mentioned yet.
  6. urza


    May 20, 2010
    Speaking of the African Blackwood, I've got mine sitting in front of me right now! :)

    I got mine last weekend and gave my Charlow a little break to carry this. I'm really liking the size and overall design. The way the main blade thins down to make room for the secondary is pretty neat. I've been wanting a slim single spring dual-blade knife and this one fits the bill quite well. So far using the main blade for food tasks and the smaller secondary for edc cuts.

    I'm at work but if I get a chance this weekend, I'll try to snap a few comparison pics against other GECs I've recently acquired.
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2013
  7. okbohn


    May 26, 2006
    What I love about this design is the thinness. It is as thin as a single blade, but has the second blade.
  8. joeymoey


    Apr 20, 2013
    That's what I like about it too. Its got 2 blades but is on a single spring so it will be nice and thin - great for pocket carry. I also like that it has the same blades as the Eureka Jack which is one of my favorite patterns atm (tastes change almost daily). I've got the che Chen rosewood version coming in the mail tomorrow from ksf. I can't wait!
  9. AFAustin

    AFAustin Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 8, 2004
    Thanks for the info. and opinions, gents. Once upon a time I had a very pretty little GEC #26 sleeveboard. I really liked it but for the fact that it was just a bit short for a good grip. This #79 single spring reminds me of it, but with more to grab onto!

  10. joeymoey


    Apr 20, 2013
    Here's a pic of my new che chen rosewood workhorse. I didn't really care for it when I first got it. It really felt uncomfortable in the hand (especially using the secondary blade) but iam warming up to it the more I play with it. There is some blade rubbing in a few spots but that doesn't bother me since its going to be used and a patina formed. I'm liking the che chen wood and am glad I got it over the African blackwood. I'm wondering if should I use some renaissance wax on the wood or use as-is? This is one of my first wood handled knives.

  11. Will Power

    Will Power

    Jan 18, 2007
    Uncomfortable in the hand? Don't like the sound of that! Is the Pen blade sharp and protuberant when the master blade is open? If so, it's a certain no no for me.

    Thanks, Will
  12. AFAustin

    AFAustin Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 8, 2004
    Thanks for the pic, joeymoey. Like Will, I'm curious about the grip comfort, especially when using the master. I figured the pen blade wouldn't protrude very much.

  13. pertinux

    pertinux Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Feb 1, 2012
    No matter what else, that's fantastically interesting wood.

    Thanks for the picture. :thumbup:

    ~ P.
  14. joeymoey


    Apr 20, 2013
    Well I fixed it. The pen blade was digging into my pinkie so I took a diamond file and some sandpaper to the sharp corners on the top back end of the blade (is there a name for this?) and the top of the shoulder. Now it is alot more comfy in hand. Surprisingly so actually. This thing is really growing on me. Just wish i could adjust the pull to be a little easier and smoother on both blades. It would be perfect then.
  15. bwperdue

    bwperdue Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 26, 2007
    I just received an ebony Tidioute version today. Aside from the typical GEC sharp tang corners which I broke with a fine stone, the knife looks and feels great. The ebony is evenly dark, the shield is perfectly inletted, all surfaces are smooth and pleasing to the touch. Yes, the pull is a little stiff at this point, but I can tell that with a few oil flushes and a few more openings, it will be just where I want it, at about what a Vic Soldier/Pioneer is.

    I find both blades comfortable to use, but then again, the Tidioute version doesn't have the hardcore swedging that the Northfields have.
  16. popedandy

    popedandy Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 8, 2006
    I picked one up in Bocote at GP Knives yesterday. The build quality is excellent, the spring tension is lighter than I expected, but still firm enough - probably not that different from some of my Case knives, and it is quite thin for a 2-blade knife.

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