Delays in Production Knives

Jul 22, 1999
As I am sure most of you are aware, there seems to always be lots and lots of delays when a new production knife first comes out. Typical examples include the Busse Basics and the EDI Genesis in A2. What accounts for these delays? Overly optimistic delivery schedules? Too much reliance on outside suppliers? Quality control problems?

I think that sometimes the factory wants to work ALL of the glitches out before unleashing a new beasty on us. Thank goodness for it too!

The choices we make dictates the life we lead.

misque - if this is the case, then companies like Microsoft and others too numerous to name could learn much from them
In the field of new high-tech knives, Murphy's law is strictly enforced. Anything that can go wrong will, and things take longer. I'll be ready to criticize delivery delays when there's nothing a month old on or near my desk (knife stuff or day job stuff) that I'd said I could get done in a week.

AKTI Member # SA00001
I think most of it can be blamed on overly optimistic delivery schedules, too much reliance on outside suppliers and quality control problems

In most industries, delays are inserted into production schedules as a method of free publicity. People wonder why things take so long to see the light of day, interest often rises, and it gives a chance for the company in charge of production to take a look at what the other companies are coming out with, allowing them to slightly modify their offerings while using existing architecture, like a new handle material or blade steel employed at the final hour.

In the world of visual entertainment, it is no different. It is often a gamble when a film is delayed for a very long time, but three times (Wild Wild West, Titanic, Eyes Wides Shut) out of four it pays off BIG TIME, with the occasional delay resulting in something people no longer care about (Starship Troopers).

Most of the time, when a knife is released after long delays, you will most likely hear "It was worth the wait", or something like it, in the Dexter Ewing review.

Robert Joseph Ansbro

If it can be written, or thought, it can be filmed. -Stanley Kubrick, 1928-1999

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Mercury has hit the nail rite on the hand I also feel that what James said is also a factor. I suspect first they come out early with news of the knife to promote it then let things build. It seems that Murphy's law kicks in almost evertime and problems arise thus the knives do not start shipping on time. It does seem like this is occuring more and more and I know it does bother some folks I have talked to at shows. I do think they start promoting things just a lil early.


Tom Carey
Mr. Mattis is correct. Murphy's Law is the number one culprit in new knife delivery delays. Advertising a knife before it is available is common however the promotional efferct of pre-advertising is the last reason knives are not delivered on time. Believe me, running and paying for ads when the knife is not available to deliver does not make the company any money.

From a manufacturer's standpoint I would like to have a new knife ready to ship the day the first ad hits the streets however this is rarely the case.

In making a high tech production folder you have a variety of individual mass produced parts made out of a different materials which are produced by various subcontractors. Processes include, molding, stamping, casting, grinding, heat treatment, polishing, forging, screw production, etching etc. For each of the knife's parts a tool must be made to create these parts. Tooling lead times tend to run from 4-6 months. This does not include the engineering/design time to produce the tool or the part. Few if any manufacturers make tooling in house or have the capability to do all production processes. Making a production knife is similar to making pieces of a puzzle in five or six different locations. When it comes time to put the puzzle together and one of the pieces does not fit (a common occurance) you start over by making a new tool or modify the existing tool, hence another 4-6 month delivery delay. After the tooling has been completed and the knife is assembled for the first time, production goes very slow until the assembly/finishing craftsmen get familiar with making that knife.

Finally a new product is just that, one new item. Everyone making quality knives is busy in this industry and therefore you can't drop everything you are doing just to make one new model. Production of a new model must be scheduled into the production schedule for all existing models the company produces.

Waiting for a new knife you have been reading the ads for six months can be frustrating. As a manufacturer, if I could shorten this lead time I would be the first to do so but it's not that easy. I trust this explanation will give some insight into this topic.

Outdoor Edge Cutlery Corp.

David Bloch,

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