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Harness Jacks- any collectors?

Discussion in 'Traditional Folders and Fixed Blades' started by waynorth, Mar 26, 2006.

  1. waynorth

    waynorth Dealer / Materials Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    Nov 19, 2005
    Am I the only Harness Jack collector out there? A lot of collectors do not even recognize the terms Harness Jack or Harness Knife. Most manufacturers stopped producing them as horses disappeared from our society, making them fairly rare, but they are an interesting knife. Judging from the flurry of patents in the early 1900s punches were considered important tools, and I suspect anyone who had a horse or a team was likely to have one in their pocket or kit.
    I think this qualifies them as a very distinct pattern, like a trapper, stockman or barlow. See the attached picture for a couple of my favorites, and it would be nice to hear from any of you knifers who like old patterns!
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Bartleby

    Bartleby

    Oct 28, 2005
    They would be interesting to collect. I've seen them referred to as "teamster's knives" in old catalogs. Several working horsepeople I know carry a Victorinox soldier for the punch blade, probably the current equivalent.
     
  3. lambertiana

    lambertiana Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 7, 2000
    I like the Harness Jack, but I only have two - an Ulster and a Keen Kutter. They are hard to come by.

    I can't quite make out the tang stamps on those two, what are they? The bone-handled teardrop looks a lot like a regular two-blade teardrop that I have from Globe Cutlery Co. Exactly the same bone jigging, same proportions, same shield, just a pen blade rather than a punch, and it's an easy-opener. Perhaps they were contracted to the same manufacturer.
     
  4. waynorth

    waynorth Dealer / Materials Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    Nov 19, 2005
    Good eye lambertiana! It is indeed a Globe Cut. Co. It was made on contract, by Robeson. Item #6616242592 on EBAY now is a nearly identical knife with Robeson tang stamps!
    The other is a Miller Bros. Cutlery. I d sure like to see pics of your knives. Can you post some here?
     
  5. Johnny11758

    Johnny11758

    465
    Aug 17, 2004
    New Schatt & Morgan harness jacks are available in four different bone varieties.
     
  6. waynorth

    waynorth Dealer / Materials Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    Nov 19, 2005
    There is another Schatt&Morgan Harness Jack coming out in April, a reproduction of one in their 1911 catalog! I'll post pictures when they are out! There will only be 110 knives total,with 25 ebony, 75 jigged bone, 8 candy cell, and 2 stag.
     
  7. lambertiana

    lambertiana Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 7, 2000
    I saw that Robeson on ebay, and figured that the Globe may have been made by them. Too bad that Robeson will probably go for more than I can afford right now.

    I'll see if I can figure out how to post pictures. I just got a digital camera last week, so I can take the pictures. I just have to find out how to post here.
     
  8. lambertiana

    lambertiana Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 7, 2000
    I don't plan on bidding on that Robeson, I can tell that it will get too rich for my blood. Too bad, it is certainly a nice one.

    What size jpegs do you want? My new camera is 8MP, but I can take lower resolution if I want.
     
  9. waynorth

    waynorth Dealer / Materials Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    Nov 19, 2005
    Sounds like a great camera lambertiana! I'm not sure what resolution is useful to send, me being an old dinosaur. To post a pic, the maximum size is 800x600 pixels or 1.4m, whatever that means. you can send it bigger and I can reduce it, which might improve the resolution.
    The resolution I use with my scanner is 150 dpi, if that helps, and it produces acceptable results, if not perfect. Anyone out there who knows more, please pipe in!!
     
  10. waynorth

    waynorth Dealer / Materials Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    Nov 19, 2005
    This picture is posted for lambertiana. I'm sure he'll say a bit about the knives. Nice Ulster John, and I don't mind seeing knives in more relic-y condition like the Keen Kutter.;)
     

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  11. rev_jch

    rev_jch

    Jul 29, 2002
  12. waynorth

    waynorth Dealer / Materials Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    Nov 19, 2005
    Just to clarify: a jack is usually considered to be a knife that only pivots from one end. A Harness Jack by definition, is a two blade knife with 1 blade and a punch, both of which pivot on the same end of the handle. So Rev_jch you are right, the Moore Maker is a stockman. I've attached more examples for you to see.
     

    Attached Files:

  13. rev_jch

    rev_jch

    Jul 29, 2002
    Very familar with jacks, thanks for the info though!

    I use to see many, many years ago (20+) at flea markets and knife shows. Allot of collectors these days are going after them. They were not very popular at one time, and were readily available.

    Ive been collecting/making knives for over 23 years and have seen some pretty interesting variations ;)
     
  14. lambertiana

    lambertiana Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 7, 2000
    I picked up that Ulster for a song a couple years ago, I was very pleasantly surprised at how low the final bidding was. It has the typical monster snap seen on many Ulsters, and an unusually large punch. Unlike that Keen Kutter, it saw very little use - the blade only has very light sharpening, and the square ends of the tangs (for the half stops) show no rounding.

    Waynorth - The bottom (lighter wood) of the two harness jacks in your second picture has a master blade that looks familiar. The grind looks a lot like the master blade on a Southington teardrop jack that I have. Who made those two?
     
  15. waynorth

    waynorth Dealer / Materials Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    Nov 19, 2005
    Always nice to get a deal!

    Those kniives are stamped Zenith, and the top one was made by New York Knife Co. The bottom one was made a little later, you can see the salesman's number on the blade; it's quite minty. It's marked Germany on the back of the tang. You may know that Zenith was a Marshall Wells Hardware brand, and they contracted to various cutleries for their knives. I scanned them together for comparison. I got them both from the same guy a few years ago.
    Here's some more pics:;)
     

    Attached Files:

  16. lambertiana

    lambertiana Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 7, 2000
    I should have recognized that one Zenith as being made by NYKC, that Harrison punch should have been a dead giveaway. I have a NYKC cattle knife with a Harrison punch.

    Of course, you never know if it was actually made by NYKC. I have a Challenge cattle knife with an Alvord punch. It could have been made by Empire on contract for Challenge, it could have been made by Challenge with licensing of the Alvord punch from Empire, or it could have been made by someone else. It seems that the cutlery industry was a bit on the incestuous side.
     
  17. waynorth

    waynorth Dealer / Materials Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    Nov 19, 2005
    Yes, I know what you mean. You find different punches on several brands of knife. It seems that Schatt and Morgan either had HJs made by Robeson, or bought punches or used their Cooper punch under licence.
    See attached S&M HJ, probably made in the 1920's.
     

    Attached Files:

  18. Wolfgang

    Wolfgang

    452
    Feb 3, 2004
    Very interesting to know about these Harness Jacks, did never hear about them before! :confused: :thumbup:

    Found a source to get new and unused Kissing Cranes knives from the last century as I mentioned in another thread already. There was also one kind of knife that I`ve never seen before, now I know what it is!;) :D
    Just have a look here:

    http://www.messerforum.net/attachment.php?attachmentid=19917
    and here:
    http://www.messerforum.net/attachment.php?attachmentid=19918
    The Harness Jack is not stamped or marked but should definately be a Klaas (kissing Cranes) knife!
    Any experts know about it?:confused: :D
     
  19. waynorth

    waynorth Dealer / Materials Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    Nov 19, 2005
    As promised, here's a picture of the new Schatt & Morgan harness jack. The knife and punch are modeled after the knife in S&M's 1911 catalog. I love this knife; it's made in high carbon steel, 1095! The Mayer punch was patented in 1908 (invented in 1906) to provide an easily manufactured and thus inexpensive punch for leather. Considering a pocketknife might cost a day or two's wages, cost was an issue back then!
    A person might own one knife or two back then. How lucky some of us collectors are today, some owning a hundred knives or more!
     

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