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First Impressions of the Rusty Sgian Dubh

Discussion in 'Himalayan Imports' started by Steely_Gunz, Jul 10, 2006.

  1. Steely_Gunz

    Steely_Gunz Got the Khukuri fevah Moderator

    May 9, 2002
    The mailman dropped off small box containing the Rusty Sgian Dubh (RSD...because i have to keep looking up the spelling:foot: )from Yangdu on Saturday. Typical fast shipping by Yangdu. Thank you, kind lady:)

    Let me just get right down to it, guys. IMHO, this is the single most flawless out-of-the-box product that I have gotten from HI. Only the Uncle Bill Salyan and to a lesser degree my YCS from that special run a year or so back rival it in real perfection. Norm's detailed review on his was spot on, and the specs on mine (as far as I can tell) are exactly like his. I had some really nice (nice by my standards because the wife took them) pics uploading to photobucket, but somewhere in the mix cyberspace decided to eat them. I'll just post some of Yangdu's pics instead, as they are better anyway:D

    The pictures don't do this little beauty justice. The degree of polish of the blade is amazing. The gray swirls in the horn give it a character far and above what you can get from any high production piece. The only way I can describe this knife is organic. It doesn't feel anything like my cold steel version of stainless and rubber, nor does it give off a Highland Games vibe that I have gotten from the ornate show pieces. It's a very simple knife. Simple in design, simple in construction. However, they followed Sarge's (thank you kind sir!) spec to a T, and I can honestly say that this is the perfect knife to teeter on the cusp of being packable yet not feeling "under knifed". It's beautiful, it's graceful, it's strong. It simply is everything that person would need in a knife.

    The jimping on the spine, the very careful hand that Yuvraj used to scribe in the lettering (think about difficult that really has to be for someone that is not well versed in our language), and careful fitting of the bolster between the blade and horn is the best I have ever seen. It wasn't super sharp when it arrived, but that is due to the very, very, very, high degree of polish the blade got. It honestly looks like chrome:eek: However, the edge just popped up with a few licks on a butcher's steel followed by a dry stropping. It now shaves its entire edge.

    The sheath is also very well done. The stitching is straight and even. It will lend itself to boot carry very easily as a length of cord passed through the two holes will fit perfectly. I will also be making a new sheath for it to carry on my belt. The handle is too beautiful to hide away in my boot:) The sheath it comes with is great for boot carry and a quick draw as it sits a little loose. I'm going to make a leather one with a little more -click- to it;)

    In short, this is a great knife and perhaps the most beautifully constructed HI product I have ever received. I never had the honor of meeting or really conversing with Rusty when he was with us. A post here and a post there, really. However, it doesn't take a genius to understand that he was well respected and loved by many, many people in this community. In that regard, I am so honored to have a blade baring his name as well as marking a huge milestone for a group of men and women that I have not only come to embrace as friends, but as family as well. I'm filled with pride to be able to carry a blade that represents the ups and downs we have all had over the years, carries the name of a man that was here from the begining, and, in my own selfish way, I know that I too have been able to make a small immortal mark on the long (in internet terms, anyway) and rich history of the Cantina.

    Thank you, Yangdu for the wonderful knife. Thank you Yuvraj for your hard work and very obvious passion for your craft. Thank you gentlepeople of the Cantina for over 200,000 posts of information, nonsense, and heartfelt fun. And Thank You, Rusty, for being here, for starting it all with Uncle Bill, for doing the thankless job of a Mod. You are appreciated and missed, but you are quite obviously honored in this work of steel and brass and horn. Small in stature and polished and always at the ready, the RSD is a fitting tribute to our beloved friend and our bright future.

  2. munk


    Mar 22, 2002
    What a great post.

  3. Fiddleback

    Fiddleback Knifemaker Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    Oct 19, 2005
    Awesome review Jake. Hopefully there'll be more of these.
  4. Ad Astra

    Ad Astra

    Jul 30, 2004
    Great stuff and thanks, Jake. :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup:

    Your usual good words. Hope to see a bunch of these hit the DOTD's soon. Like you, I trip over spelling skean dhu, sgian dubh, etc. and vote we call it the RSD. Mmm, neem RSD, gray horn RSD.... personally I want just the HI marks on it, and a satin finish will come anyways. Frankly I am reluctant to bump my Sarge-made skean dhu out of daily carry. Unless I'm boating, then its a Spyderco Harpy.

    Sorry you've been too busy to keep up your post count lately, but on the bright side, I bet you've got the falcata funds earmarked.

  5. Kismet

    Kismet Basic Member Basic Member

    Jan 30, 2002
    You have a good heart, Jake.

  6. Steely_Gunz

    Steely_Gunz Got the Khukuri fevah Moderator

    May 9, 2002
    Thank you, gentlemen:) I've always had a big mouth;) This really is a great knife. I could honestly see this as an EDC....however, I have SO MANY great EDC, that i hate to mark up such a wonderful example of passion in one's craft. Between the modified Sarge/KPH gifted to me by a forumite, a WONDERFUL little Sarge-made (BRAVO!:)) clip point EDC (given to my wife by the same rascal) when i need a tiny fixed blade, and my multitudes of multitools and SAKs...my EDC is pretty much covered without damaging such a beautiful blade. Who knows, it may end up working it's way into the rotation. If nothing else, it makes a wickedly flat SD knife that could go where my beloved Khukrambit could not. At any rate, I have a strong feeling that I will be on a Sgian Dubh kick for awhile trying to snag a few examples. An old design that just plain works. Given thought, just about everyone of my wide range of knife needs could be filled by this beauty.

  7. Svashtar


    Dec 28, 2003
    Great post Jake! I am working on mine now. The handle was not quite as symmetrical as on this one, but I was able to tweak that pretty easily by hand so it looks much better. Getting that back double indent in the handle to match is very difficult to do. The sisau wood is very easy to work. I re-sanded it and got some grain to come out that is just incredible. Probably should have left it natural with just an oil finish, but as it is a highly polished blade I am giving it a nice tru-oil finish. Several coats to go.

    The sheath was dyed a darker brown and turned out great. The guard on mine is at a bit of an angle when viewed from one side, but only I would notice it, and the wood to metal fit is flawless. Like you I could not believe how sharp I was able to get this with very little effort.

    Congrats on getting such a beautiful first-horn example of this great knife. :thumbup:

  8. Sylvrfalcn


    Jun 4, 2002
    Told you that you were going to like it. ;) Good report Jake, going to have to try and snag a horn handled version of the RSD, looks plumb sweet. Yuvraj did a great job with these, and I look forward to seeing more of them. The sarkis also did a good job of following the original design I sent to Yangdu, and it appears they've started using a better (thicker) grade of leather on 'em. If the fit is loose, there's ways you can tighten it up. That extended tab on the back half of the sheath is, IMHO, an improvement over the "standard" style of sgian dubh sheath. It's there for three reasons; 1. To help keep you from poking yourself when resheathing the knife, 2. To provide an attachment point for a tie down, so the silly thing don't come flying out of your boot/sock if you're the active type, and 3. (here's the one y'all ain't thought about yet) So you can hang the thing around your neck on a cord (that's right, neck knife :D ) in case you don't wear socks with your sandals like old dudes down in Miami. :rolleyes: :cool:

  9. Howard Wallace

    Howard Wallace . Moderator

    Feb 23, 1999
    It sounds as if the kamis really came through with this design. I'm glad. As Jake and Norm have discovered, the sgian dubh is useful for more than decorating the tops of stockings, to which use it has been relegated for some time.

    I hope Yangdu gets enough stock of these to put them on the website. There are many more people than those that hang out on the forum potentially interested in such a knife.
  10. Roadrunner


    Jun 9, 1999
    :) Wonderful knife, wonderful post, all from a great khukuri knut. Thanks for adding yet another one to my "to buy" list Steely.
  11. Yangdu

    Yangdu [email protected] Himalayan Imports-Owner Moderator

    Apr 5, 2005
    Great review, thank you Jake

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