Folding Bushcraft Knife that is usable/comfortable - by Daniel Koster

Discussion in 'Koster Knives' started by Daniel Koster, Feb 26, 2013.

Can a folding bushcraft knife compete with the fixed blade version?

  1. I'm intrigued

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  2. I'm skeptical

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  3. I'm against it

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  4. Sign me up!

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  1. Daniel Koster

    Daniel Koster www.kosterknives.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 18, 2001
    machineage - I have been brewing an idea in my mind for a while now on how to lock the 2 pieces together like a puzzle - interlock, really - so that there is no possiblity of rotational movement (in line with the arc the blade makes as it opens). Such things do exist in the world of tools, fixtures, etc. So, it should be possible to make something such that when it is fully opened it sets in place, interlocks (vs. 2 parallel surfaces aligning) and then that junction is laterally braced. I think if it's protected from rotational movement as well as laterally protected from disengaging - you'd have the perfect locking system for knives.

    The problem is this - how many knifemakers/inventors do you think have already been down this road already? at least in their minds, if not their pockets. And even if I were to invent such a system it would require a lot of tooling setup costs, R&D time...as well as patents, lawyers to protect it and license it, and so on.

    Early on in my knifemaking career I had the opportunity to meet with a lot of makers in-person to talk ideas, etc. A few of those were the "innovators" of their time. Nearly all of those innovators has suffered from feeling like they were "robbed" at one point. Either by someone else getting the credit for their idea...or not getting the patent soon enough...or they make the same thing as "Mr. X" but he has 10 times the orders....etc. To me, that's a miserable way to live and I don't want to fall prey to it. So, I'll just wait around until someone else invents it (that's willing to put up with all the intangibles) and then I'll gladly license it from them. ;)

    Until then, I've done a lot of research - both personally as well as through other owners/sources. And the best lock on the market to go with from a custom knifemaker's view is the frame-lock. The one downside to the frame-lock is defeating the lock by torquing the bar out of place by too much rotational pressure on the spine of the blade.

    My solution for this is to use full-frame handles held solidly against it so that the lock bar has nowhere to go. You get the advantage of a liner-lock, with the stiffness, thickness and lightness of a titanium frame.

    The 2nd part will be using a recession in blade tang for the stop pin to slide into. With proper fit-up of this locking system, we should be good to go. :thumbup:

    Dan
     
  2. Daniel Koster

    Daniel Koster www.kosterknives.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 18, 2001
    machineage - I have been brewing an idea in my mind for a while now on how to lock the 2 pieces together like a puzzle - interlock, really - so that there is no possiblity of rotational movement (in line with the arc the blade makes as it opens). Such things do exist in the world of tools, fixtures, etc. So, it should be possible to make something such that when it is fully opened it sets in place, interlocks (vs. 2 parallel surfaces aligning) and then that junction is laterally braced. I think if it's protected from rotational movement as well as laterally protected from disengaging - you'd have the perfect locking system for knives.

    The problem is this - how many knifemakers/inventors do you think have already been down this road already? at least in their minds, if not their pockets. And even if I were to invent such a system it would require a lot of tooling setup costs, R&D time...as well as patents, lawyers to protect it and license it, and so on.

    Early on in my knifemaking career I had the opportunity to meet with a lot of makers in-person to talk ideas, etc. A few of those were the "innovators" of their time. Nearly all of those innovators has suffered from feeling like they were "robbed" at one point. Either by someone else getting the credit for their idea...or not getting the patent soon enough...or they make the same thing as "Mr. X" but he has 10 times the orders....etc. To me, that's a miserable way to live and I don't want to fall prey to it. So, I'll just wait around until someone else invents it (that's willing to put up with all the intangibles) and then I'll gladly license it from them. ;)

    Until then, I've done a lot of research - both personally as well as through other owners/sources. And the best lock on the market to go with from a custom knifemaker's view is the frame-lock. The one downside to the frame-lock is defeating the lock by torquing the bar out of place by too much rotational pressure on the spine of the blade.

    My solution for this is to use full-frame handles held solidly against it so that the lock bar has nowhere to go. You get the advantage of a liner-lock, with the stiffness, thickness and lightness of a titanium frame.

    The 2nd part will be using a recession in blade tang for the stop pin to slide into. With proper fit-up of this locking system, we should be good to go. :thumbup:

    Dan
     
  3. Daniel Koster

    Daniel Koster www.kosterknives.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 18, 2001
    Here's an update to the design - let's see if anyone can spot the differences - some are subtle, some are not-so-subtle. ;)

    [​IMG]
     
  4. lightleak

    lightleak

    291
    Jun 11, 2009
    Dan, this looks outstanding.

    Only one question: is that oval thing right above the handles in the blade a hole or just a groove?
    I love the whole design and idea, but I really hope it is not a hole! I dislike holes in blades, but maybe that's just me.

    Other than that : Just wow!

    ll.

    Edit: What is the blade thickness going to be? It looks wonderful in the drawings, something like 0.100"? That would be brilliant.
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2013
  5. Fancier

    Fancier

    Jul 1, 2012
    A slotted hole is better than a stud. I have yet to snap off a knife at the handle due to a hole, but I find studs annoying.
    Dan, the differences that I see right away are the recess in the tang to engage the stop pin and the contouring of the cutout for the lock tab.
    Can you adjust the scale width a bit to hide the end of the tang when the knife is closed? That protruding edge looks a bit sharp.
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2013
  6. lightleak

    lightleak

    291
    Jun 11, 2009
    I am not a big fan of studs either, but holes are even worse. Make it a groove I say!
     
  7. Daniel Koster

    Daniel Koster www.kosterknives.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 18, 2001
    Blade thickness is 1/8" (0.125")
    It is a slotted hole. A machined groove is an interesting idea, but I think perhaps by the time it's grooved down far enough to make it possible to pull the blade with...might as well be all the way through. I will be stone-tumbling the blade, so there won't be any sharp edges on it. To machine it all the way through is a 2 step process: chuck it, machine it. To do a groove that is matched on both sides suddenly becomes a 10 step process requiring jigs that are quite painful to build accurately...so I'd end up having it sent out for milling instead.

    Fancier - you can see I already did about as much I can to pull the handle down over the guard. I don't want to completely cover it - we'll lose the ability to get really close up to the blade if I make the guard wider. This is intended to go in a pouch - it will feel quite bulky in your pocket. There won't be any sharp edges on it. It's just the poor resolution on the drawing when I exported it.


    Here's a picture zoomed in on the closed drawing:

    [​IMG]
     
  8. JSMcustoms

    JSMcustoms

    Feb 2, 2012
    I love the design and it looks epic.
     
  9. pap11y

    pap11y

    Jul 4, 2012
    I have the helle dokka and it is a very comfortable bushcraft folder.

    Its solid too. I don't baton through trees (I have a saw) so its very capable and usable for what I do....

    Your design looks cool... I am sure it would be very capable :)
     
  10. Daniel Koster

    Daniel Koster www.kosterknives.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 18, 2001
    pap11y - I really do like the helle dokka - great looking knife. When I first saw it I thought "Oh, I don't need to make a folding mora afterall". But then after closer inspection I saw some areas of improvement I could add to it.

    Dan
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2013
  11. Daniel Koster

    Daniel Koster www.kosterknives.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 18, 2001
    Here's the latest drawing for the prototype. I left it in the colors as I see it here in CAD. :thumbup:


    [​IMG]


    You can see I dropped the handle down over the blade guard so that in the closed position it covers the tang of the blade. This will be both liner and handle slabs (not just the handle). :thumbup:

    Also, I made some adjustments to the tang. The more I think about it, the more I want to machine a radial slot for the stop pin to travel along. Just seems like a good idea to have as much tang as possible behind the pivot pin. I also notched the back of it to get 2 surfaces to push against the lock bar. I've seen this done both poorly and done well - with any luck I'll get it right.

    I also tapered the front of the handle dramatically to allow a pinch grip.

    Just a note: the lanyard hole in the handle is just a hole - no tube. The 2nd circle is a chamfered edge.

    I'm hoping I can get this prototype wrapped up by last week. Mostly so I can beat on it and then start on a new one. :D
     
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2013
  12. superfluities

    superfluities Moderator Moderator

    337
    Jun 29, 2008
    All my Bushcrafts x4 have a .920-.950 wide handle which is what I like and IMHO special to your bushcrafts. The .800 wide handle seems narrow to me. The rounder the handle the better.
    Like the new color CAD version,stop slot is A+.
     
  13. Daniel Koster

    Daniel Koster www.kosterknives.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 18, 2001
    Yes - I originally laid that out as 0.800" but I'm leaning more towards 0.850" now that I've had a few days to play with the prototype. I'm thinking of taking the titanium up to 0.090" instead of 0.080" thick.

    My Bushcraft handles now are averaging 0.865-0.875" or so in width.
     
  14. hollowdweller

    hollowdweller

    Sep 22, 2003
    Dan,

    Any idea on the price on this? Somewhere in the Sebenza area plus or minus???????


    On the idea of something so you can totally lock the blade open-

    I have one of the DPX Hest folders and it has this little wheel you turn to lock the blade but I find I never use it. The framelock lock is plenty I think.

    Here's something I wonder about though:


    Would it be possible to make the blade such that the owner could remove it? Maybe not given the mechanics of the thing. But the idea of say having a convex blade, and a scandi blade you could swap out would be very cool. Fatter blade for batoning.


    So can you cover the frame lock side with a scale? From the drawings it looks like that is your plan????

    Wondering cause so many frame locks only have a scale on one side.

    The drawing looks wonderful!
     
  15. discdoggin

    discdoggin

    407
    Jun 6, 2010
    It keeps getting better! I love the new CAD drawings.

    DD
     
  16. machineage

    machineage

    687
    Nov 10, 2012
    I'm getting more excited with each design update! When you explain the lock mechanics you will use I can see that it should be very strong indeed. Should be a beast of a folder.....
     
  17. lightleak

    lightleak

    291
    Jun 11, 2009
    That would be great. Also because you could get a replacement blade if you ever manage to break it. Or Maybe even an add-on sawblade ?!
     
  18. Daniel Koster

    Daniel Koster www.kosterknives.com Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 18, 2001
    The blade is indeed removable already as-designed. That said, you should probably know what you're doing when you do it. I am using the 0.187" pivot pins from Alpha Knife Supply: http://alphaknifesupply.com/hardware.htm

    I don't plan on offering any other grinds at the present time, but will gladly replace any broken blades.

    All knives will be fully warrantied by me in every way for every reason. If it's a result of abuse, I'll still fix it, but will have to charge for parts. Free labor, Free resharpening, Free refinishing.
     
  19. Tbaggin

    Tbaggin

    399
    Apr 29, 2012
    What a warranty!
     
  20. lightleak

    lightleak

    291
    Jun 11, 2009
    Now that's what I call „standing behind ones product“. One of the reasons I am going to own one of these in the future.
     
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