$3,495? Just trying to learn why

Joined
Mar 23, 2018
Messages
66
Ironically, I’m not even saying they’re not worth the cost of admission, I’m just, as the title says, ”trying to learn why”.
 
Last edited:

ScooterG

You mean Ireland? Yeah, it’s mine.
Joined
Mar 15, 2016
Messages
4,108
Joe, given your personal market need for consumer acceptance of higher-end knives in the market realm of your own designs and production, should your glaring conflict-of-interest really be on here ridiculing someone who “doesn’t get” your point of view regarding custom knives?
Ugh...if you’re just trying to discredit the Brend, get on with it... Nobody has to “get” anyone’s view on custom knives. They just have to appreciate the value of them. Good night and good luck Mr. Weaver.
 

Twindog

Gold Member
Joined
Apr 6, 2004
Messages
3,370
To Joe's point on Randalls: This is the jimping on my one and only Randall. There are other problems will it too.

2v2JTYgcVxAWtWs.jpg
 

SpySmasher

Lead Guitar
Basic Member
Joined
Sep 1, 2016
Messages
5,016
Ugh...if you’re just trying to discredit the Brend, get on with it... Nobody has to “get” anyone’s view on custom knives. They just have to appreciate the value of them. Good night and good luck Mr. Weaver.
Sounds like something an aristocrat would say. Did you have your pinky up when you typed that?
 

ScooterG

You mean Ireland? Yeah, it’s mine.
Joined
Mar 15, 2016
Messages
4,108
Sounds like something an aristocrat would say. Did you have your pinky up when you typed that?
My pinky only belongs in certain places...which you might or might not be familiar with :D

Anyways, to continue about the knife...I like the handle of the Brend...seems to be constructive to strengthening ones pinky for multiple uses.
 
Joined
Mar 19, 2012
Messages
1,489
My question as a consumer is, what specifically about the Bremer knife represents such exceeding quality, or industrial design, or craftsmanship, or rare metal, or whatever, that would compel me or another consumer in a free market economy to spend 3.5 times more than a seemingly similar high quality knife from say Randall? That is a legitimate question in the same way people compare any number of products prior to purchase.

If you are looking at price/performance ratio, don't buy that knife. Why do people pay so much more for a painting by an internationally recognized artist than an equally good work by a local nobody?
 

Comeuppance

Fixed Blade EDC Emisssary
Joined
Jan 12, 2013
Messages
4,765
Just the nature of hand-made knives as a product keeps me from questioning the prices set by the maker. You can state that you wouldn't be willing to pay the price, but, it's hard to craft a meaningful argument that the price needs to be justified simply because the material cost is irrelevant. Realistically, that knife could have been made with 420J2 stock and it would likely make no functional difference to the owner (and it would actually be a bit of a blessing for the sake of corrosion resistance) since there is about a 0% chance it will ever see real use. This isn't something worth trying to evaluate practically, because it is a collection piece. The value comes from - and is set by - the person that made it.

Additionally, from a collection standpoint, I would argue that the price of the knife itself is actually a desirable feature. It makes it a point of pride, potentially the showpiece of someone's collection.
 
Joined
Feb 8, 2010
Messages
631
This kinda reminds me of when I wanted a Pugio(Roman dagger) made for me. I had recently moved to LA I looked up "swords/daggers in LA and here pops Tony Swaton's Sword in the Stone in Burbank. I didn't know anything about his previous fame or his then famous youtube show. It took an hour long drive but it didn't matter to me. I was full of hope. When I got there his minions who appeared on the youtube show were around the store serving as "clerks" and for the life of me they could not answer a damn simple question. One dude even went out said hi to my wife and I like a star greeting his fans and I guess he was expecting an "OMGG IT IS YOU FROM THE YOUTUBE CHANNEL GIVE ME YOUR AUTOGRAPH LET'S TAKE A SELFIE". Tough luck. I didn't saw the show until much later and I wouldn't have wanted his damn scribbles at all or his photograph. Anyway the only guy who could answer my questions and who had an actual idea of customer service was Tony himself. He was dealing with some foreign customers whose credit card wasn't working for some reason and after 45 minutes he FINALLY paid attention to me. I explained to him what I wanted in less than a minute and in less than a minute he said "We're not taking custom orders right now as I'm working on a big order for a movie, but if I took the order it would be over $1300 just because I made it". He had a couple of premade pugios by "his friend in Germany" which "weren't for sale" but "if there were for sale it would be $800". Boy did I leave that place with a broken heart. I went on to search other blacksmiths online. I found a Ben Porter from Altadena whom I exchanged a bunch of emails with describing exactly what I wanted. He came back with a $2000 price because he had to "use special forging techniques. BS. I did not even bother replying to the last email he sent. Ultimately I found a good blacksmith in Missouri who charged me less than $250 dollars and produced something pretty decent. To me everything above 300 dollars is excessive for a knife. But, that is my personnal opinion. If he is asking that price is because some idiot with a lot of money paid that amount or similar.
 
Joined
May 10, 2017
Messages
735
what specifically about the Bremer knife represents such exceeding quality, or industrial design, or craftsmanship, or rare metal, or whatever, that would compel me or another consumer in a free market economy to spend 3.5 times more than a seemingly similar high quality knife from say Randall? That is a legitimate question in the same way people compare any number of products prior to purchase.

That is a fair question. And the fair answer would be "Not a darned thing" - if everything was priced according to the components and work that went into it. But the world doesn't work that way. People will always be willing to pay more for "added value" as opposed to "intrinsic" or "economic" value.

As others have pointed out, something is worth what ever another person is willing to pay for it.

A Van Gogh or a Picasso painting is worth millions. But you won't find that cost in the paint, canvas, or frame.

Eric Clapton's "Blackie" Fender Strat, auctioned off for over $1,000,000. If you brought it into a pawn shop, without the name and history, you probably couldn't get $500 dollars for it.

A bottle of 1983 Chateau Margaux list price was around $80. (I have 2 left) If you could find a bottle of it today, it would cost you hundreds if not thousands. And be a waste of money since the wine is now well past it's prime.

The "price" of an item is determined by the market. You can sell it for what ever someone else is willing to pay for it. The Brend is a desirable knife to own for some people

Products don't usually sell for materials costs and labor. There is usually a "profit" added in above and beyond those expenses. That is how a maker stays in business. But there are plenty of times that products sell for less than the costs of materials and labor - at a loss. The owner is just trying to get rid of it and recoup some of his funds and reduce his losses.

The materials and labor costs are only a small fraction of what goes into the calculus of deciding the price of something. There are other concrete costs such as advertising, packaging, shipping, R&D, Insurance, taxes, staff, billing, benefits, utilities, computers, accountants, etc. All contributing to overhead the manufacturer must cover to keep the doors open and the goods flowing.

But there are other factors that contribute to price.
The story behind the item - This is huge when selling art. Have a pretty painting by an unknown. May not sell it for the price of the paint used to make it. If that same painting was made by Van Gogh, it is worth millions. Simply change the story not the product.

Exclusivity. Some manufacturers intentionally produce very expensive and "exclusive" goods to be bought by the elite or wanna-be elite. The asking price alone confines the goods to purchase only by the rich. Rolls Royce comes to mind. If you aren't of the right crowd, you aren't even allowed in the store.

Scarcity - One man can only produce so much in a given lifetime. Gold is priced as it is because it is rare. If everyone had a producing gold mine in their back yard, I guarantee you there would be more money to be had by picking up and recycling cans.

Single source - You can only get a bottle of Coke from the Cocacola bottling company. You could only get instant photos from Polaroid. Trade secrets, patents, licensing all contribute to higher prices.

Art or Design - How a product looks, can have a huge affect on price. Some people have the gift of being able to draw, or compose, or write, or create something that many people find attractive, beautiful, or compelling. That is a talent that is not found in the majority of people. There was only one Mozart, Da Vinci, Shakespeare, Lennon, Twain, Presley, or Einstein. Owning an example of their work or even an object they owned at one point is going to cost you a lot more than the costs of the parts and labor that went into it.
 
Joined
May 1, 2008
Messages
5,376
The truth is is, it is popular now, because it is popular NOW.

If one is a student of the industry, they can recall dozens of trends in knife / arms collecting. Some came and went. Some came and stayed (but usually at somewhat reduced prices as the years went by). Unless you position yourself as a dealer, the simplest solution is to buy what you like.
 
Joined
Jul 20, 2016
Messages
1,023
On other forums not relating to knives, I hear your question a lot. Why does so and so ask whatever price for whatever they are selling. It's very simple: an item is only worth what one is willing to pay and the other is willing to sell at.

Shoes, t-shirts, cars, motorcycles, paintings, whatever... If you don't agree with the price you simply move on. If it was a life saving cure I could fathom the argument, but for a hobby or luxury item, complaints seem more like "why can't they just give it to me for what I want to pay" whether the price is justified or not.
 
Joined
Apr 12, 1999
Messages
2,186
To the OP: Try to make it to a knife show. From pictures alone it is very difficult to judge a knife.
This is Blade Forums. People here are more into knives than others.
People not so involved in knives would likely call the Randall an overkill.
 

madcap_magician

Gold Member
Joined
Feb 27, 2005
Messages
4,795
Randalls and Brend customs are apples and oranges. I really love Walter's designs and have a lot of respect for him, but his prices are above what I'm willing and able to pay, and the old diminishing returns principle holds true. I can get a knife that's 90% as good for an eighth of the price.

... but it won't be a Brend.

Some small but sufficient number of people disagree and have the desire and money to buy his work. Sometimes I wish I was one of them, his grinds are just beautiful to me.

This is one of those situations where I wish more makers did production/midtech collaborations. I'd buy a good-quality Protech-made Brend Model 2 in a heartbeat at under $350.
 
Joined
Feb 27, 2013
Messages
1,639
Buying knives from makers like Brend is an investment. When he pass away like Loveless [I wish him to live in good health as long as humanly possible] that knife will be worth $34 950.
It's like Picasso - you can disagree that his paintings are beautiful but they're worth fortune because Picasso was famous.
 
Joined
Oct 28, 2005
Messages
5,162
Intrinsic vs. Extrinsic Value

I was overwhelmed/bored by the only philosophy course I ever took in college. However, I believe the answer lies down that road. Perhaps some phil. majors will chime in here.
 

Phixt

Gold Member
Joined
May 28, 2016
Messages
1,109
That's nothin. Check out the very first knife over the Floridian Arizona: a $6,500 Walter Brend looking like it's fresh off the friggin United Cutlery line LOL!

Yeah, beauty is in the eye of the beholder alright! Problem seems to be conscious clarity. :D
 

skyhorse

Gold Member
Joined
Jan 30, 2010
Messages
11,802
There are many Randall #1s like mine but only one Walter Brend knife like that one.
qeyIHic.jpg
 

mb>

Gold Member
Joined
Sep 24, 2014
Messages
2,628
I got into cigars for a while. In my enthusiasm and quest to dive deeper, I asked a friend about some high end Cuban sticks I thought about trying. He advised me not to spend the money - yet. It wasn't that I wouldn't have liked them, it's just that there was so much good stuff to be had for a fraction of the cost. And the subtle, nuanced differences that commanded the higher price really might be lost on me at that point. Same with wine. Takes time and experience to develop the palate.

Anyway, this discussion brought all that to mind.
 
Joined
Oct 13, 2006
Messages
781
I used to participate in an annual jurried art show where 95% of the paintings sold for under $100. Most paintings actually didn’t sell at all. My paintings were priced between $1500 and $2000 and all sold out within a couple of days. Two or three internationally know artists sold out of paintings priced at $3000-$5000.

Other artists and show attendees often asked why my paintings made of the same acrylic or oil paint were worth so much more than the other paintings of similar quality and subject matter in the show. One lady that was quite talented had been participating in the show for over 20 years and never sold a piece for more than $200. She felt that it was unfair to allow a new participant like me to charge so much.

My answer... I sell paintings for $1500 and up because that’s what my collectors are willing to pay.
 
Top