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Marbles Gladstone Mich. U.S.A.

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by Helleri, Mar 2, 2017.

  1. Helleri


    May 12, 2012
    Picked this up at a new Antiques & Vintage shop in town. 5 inches from tip to guard. 4 inches from guard to butt. Came with a leather sheath. But not sure it is the original sheath. And I don't like the sheath very much (will be making a new one for it). The overall fit is pretty tight. It could stand to be ever so slightly tighter but I think a little Neatsfoot will cause it the leather rounds to swell swell a hair and take care of that.





    He didn't have any knifes displayed on the floor when I first went in there a few day ago. I was after some other stuff but I figured I'd ask even though I didn't see any out. And he produced 4 silverware sized boxes from beneath a credenza that are just stuffed full of knives (fixed and folder). A lot of cheap knives mixed in it. Also a lot of those really tiny cute knives one tends to see here and there (the things that look almost like salesman samples, but are also clearly homemade). About 2/3 of all the knives are in good condition. None of them really pristine. But a wide variety of styles and brands.

    There were some pretty cool knives in there. But this one caught my eye when I first looked at the boxes a few days ago. And when I went in there again today it I still simply liked it best (even though there are quite a few more I'd like to own this one just felt the most right in the hand). These knives had all been boxed up because he had not had a real chance to go through them with a fine tooth comb and price them yet. What ever it is worth aside (I've no idea on that). We were both satisfied with the price we settled on.

    So I am posting here to share. But also to maybe get a little more information. Mainly What type of steel is it? What material are those red spacers and the butt (rubbing vigorously produces no distinguishable odor. It does not melt, fume, smoke, boil, or flame with a red hot needle tip applied. Just a slight pin prick)? And when about was it made?
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2017
  2. hauntedchild


    Mar 6, 2015
    I wish I knew the answers to your questions , but I can tell you it takes a wicked edge and holds it fairly well , I have several I picked up in a lot back a few years ago . The pictures the seller posted had a nice patina about the time I arrived to pick them up he decided to do me a favor and clean the blades with wet sand paper I could have screemed .
  3. KBA

    KBA Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 27, 2014
  4. Helleri


    May 12, 2012
    Thanks for the link. There is some pretty good information in there that helped me to narrow in on approximate age and some of of the material composition. Definitely not one of the the more recent ones. It seems closest to a lot of the "Ideal hunting" knives made around the late 40's. But absent the fuller. Thinking the butt must be bakelite.
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2017
  5. DocT


    Mar 25, 2012
    Those old Marbles knives were among the best. Very nice find.

    On a side note, even though Marbles was sold out to a Chinese maker, there is a Marbles back in business in MO, making knives there, once again.
  6. Helleri


    May 12, 2012
    The stacks are a little looser than I thought. Can't get that nut to turn :grumpy: Went as far as to file down a hefty little steel skeleton key to be a perfect fit and give me a lever action at the same time. Tried getting it oiled up as well and letting that sit in for a while...Nothing, it won't budge :(
  7. Eric@DLT

    [email protected]

    Mar 30, 2015
    A Chinese company doesn't own Marbles although many of the patterns were sent to China to be made.

    The US company that owns the brand doesn't make the knives but some of their patterns are being made again in the US. Most recently the Woodcraft that was sourced to Bark River to be made.

    To the original question, I do not know the answers for you.
  8. kn4wd


    Jan 20, 2014
    the tang end is usually peened after the nut is tightened to keep it from unscrewing
  9. Helleri


    May 12, 2012
    I guess they never heard of lock washers...I mean what the buck. This is infuriating. Just getting the spacers to bloat a bit worked...Until it didn't. This isn't the first time I've had trouble with a stacked leather knife behaving itself either.

    But a think I have a solution. One that I want to bounce off others before getting dug in. What I am thinking about doing is:
    • Cut out a few of the leather spacers so that the butt can drop down far enough for me to get a side purchase on the nut.
    • Lower the nut (Vice and vice grips?).
    • Shave the peen off.
    • Remove the nut.
    • Replace the spacers (I'm a leather worker by trade so that isn't an issue. I'll probably just replace all of them).
    • Fix any potential threading issues (I have all the tool needed to create/correct threading).
    • Drop in a lock washer (might need to leave out a spacer to accommodate it).
    • Reassemble.
    Last edited: Mar 7, 2017
  10. Mikael W

    Mikael W Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 21, 2007
    It will work!

    Another way I have used myself, is to make an extra washer from sewing thread or fishingline (Berkley Fireline).
    Just fill the gap with laps of the thread until almost full and secure with superglue until full.
    Trim off the glue and polish.

    The thread pushes the leather washers towards the pommel and tightens the handle.

  11. Helleri


    May 12, 2012
    I've done that in the past. I think that works best on smaller play. This play has gotten to be a bit too much for that to work well. Also while there is a good amount of play at the guard and butt now. There are no real gaps to get a thread or line started in (I've tried). The other thing is that I've no clue how long this knife has been sitting. This gives me an excuse to get at the tang and clean it up. There is probably some rust (iron oxide and zinc oxide I'd wager...Maybe some copper sulfate as well) in there. I can even lacquer the tang after I clean it to prevent the tannin in the leather from damaging it.

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