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Review of a Masterpeice; almost

Discussion in 'Himalayan Imports' started by munk, Aug 28, 2007.

  1. munk


    Mar 22, 2002
    This blade is called the RB special, for the new shop manager. Rajesh Baral.

    My first thought; a Masterpeice. HI just wont quit. Not only Sher comes back, and that's his Rising Sun on the blade, but makes one exactly like he used to when metal was plentiful and life cheap on the Brazos. This thing is thick- 7/16" in the place near the bend. It is about 18.5" long, depending upon which corner of the buttcap you pick, and weighs 40 oz.

    IT has a two layer handle- one half with buffalo horn, and one with what appears to be Montana Elk. THEN, it has scrolling on the buttcap, the center divide of the handle, and right past the bolster on the blade, oulined in golden relief. Though there are a few overuns where the white metal wears too thin covering what appears to be brass underneath, the overall effect is simply outstanding. There is no other way to approach looking at this blade. As a object of art, it stands.

    Additionally, it has the frog many have been wanting for a decade; check it out. That's thick. The blade is also very very hard, and the edge maintains this past the initial curve all the way to the tip. I have real reservations about that in a chopping blade. Too much of a good thing. What happens if a big chip of the tip comes flying off? Sometimes people ask for things they find not as easy to live with as their dreams predicted. I would ask HI to keep the heavier blades at least with softer tips.

    When I first saw it, as pleased as I was, I wondered about the shape. Wasp like waist, much of the weight in the Chiruwa handle, and that shark point. How could it chop?

    Well, you didn't really think I'd just look at it, did you?

    I tried a half green log and a old hardened ponderosa pine. The half green it did fine, but anyone who chops wood knows that most blades will look good cutting a green log.

    It was bouncing off the old wood. I grumbled., went inside and sharpened it. How do you know this edge was hard, munk? Because my diamond paddles skate along. They take some, but don't dig.

    Back outside it cut better, but not good enough. So I brought out an old beater 20" villager AK, also made by Sher, and it cut OK. I brought out a full sized 18" chiruwa BDC made by Bura and it cut. The AK weighs 36 ounces, the BDC around 2 lbs. Both felt satisfying when chopping the hardened wood.

    The edge to the Masterpiece is convex and very thick. A lot of weight and mass is trying to get through on every strike. And it...vibrates. No matter where I held it, choked up, or where I struck; near the tip, closer to the bolster, mid range, high range below the tip, it was never completely satisfying. So much power and it's not getting through. I tried striking lightly and this seemed to work best but was frustrating to me.

    So I took it down to the belt grinder to put a sharper edge on it. 7 minutes later it was improved. How do I know this edge is hard? Because of the way the belts felt against the metal; just like the diamond hones.

    I never could get the results I wanted.
    I'm going to try reprofiling the edge. I've a simple idea though; make the RB Masterpeice at 2 lbs. Take some of the metal out of the handle and put it forward.

    Or make the Masterpeice real light, and the Fighter it looks like. Two versions. A two pounder and a 24 ouncer.

    Well, that's it. It's so fine I love it, but something must change. This is going to take a little more time to figure out. I went outside with Carter to show him, and it was not THAT far away from my 20" AK now that the old log is well penetrated.

    There is probably a very slight rebalance of this blade- and a Kami would know, not I, that could and should be done. It is so close to what it deserves to be; the RB Masterpeice.
    We could probably have a 40 ounce version. I'm not giving up this one. To anyone.

    Edit- I tried my 3lb Ganga Ram on the log, also with a convex edge but not as broad as the Masterpeice. It was not entirely satifying on the log- and there was a vibration. The GR is a great delimber. It bashes through.
    Next step will be a fixed segment of wood- like a tree trunk. I want to see what happens when the object being chopped doesn't move much.

  2. Steely_Gunz

    Steely_Gunz Got the Khukuri fevah Moderator

    May 9, 2002
    Pics coming momentarily. Masterpiece is right:eek:

    It's going to be pic heavy. 52K beware:D 7 pics total, I think.
  3. xgoldy

    xgoldy Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 28, 2006
    got any pics of the new blade?
  4. CallsThunder


    May 10, 2004

    Thank goodness...I can't tell you the anxiety that comes from reading a review like that and not having any pics. munk suddenly became a bad word. I'll be okay soon.
  5. Steely_Gunz

    Steely_Gunz Got the Khukuri fevah Moderator

    May 9, 2002

    Fantastic review, Munk;):thumbup:
  6. Tohatchi NM

    Tohatchi NM

    Mar 26, 2002
    Looks like Sher has made some improvements. :D Nice engraving, hope you get the edge to where it needs to be.
  7. Ad Astra

    Ad Astra

    Jul 30, 2004
    Flashy... :D

  8. spiraltwista


    Nov 29, 2002
    Sounds like a good evolution to me Munk.

    Most of the old military forged forged full tang blades the tang is hammerd into a thin v.shape within the handle length.

  9. tedwca


    Dec 10, 2005
    Nice, very nice
  10. Roger Smith

    Roger Smith

    Oct 22, 2001
    absolutely incredible.
  11. Abaniko


    Jun 2, 2006
    Excellent :cool:
  12. munk


    Mar 22, 2002
    Well, this is just the prototype I'm sure HI can get it right and tweak it.

    I tried it on massive stationary wood and it still is an inefficient chopper. IT does not penetrate. I'll work on the edge, but the production run needs to have this worked out.

    But I'm sticking to the Masterpeice title.

  13. munk


    Mar 22, 2002
    "Sounds like a good evolution to me Munk.

    Most of the old military forged forged full tang blades the tang is hammerd into a thin v.shape within the handle length."


    The chiruwa BDC that outchopped it has a much thinner handle section of metal.

    Carter tried it against the BDC and agreed about the chopping inefficiency.

    I wish I had a better camera. This blade is about the most handsome I've ever seen.
    I took 20 photos. I see I forgot to send along the ones of the chakma and Karda.
    Very well shaped- wide curved handles.

    My photos did not do this blade justice, that's for sure.

  14. Steely_Gunz

    Steely_Gunz Got the Khukuri fevah Moderator

    May 9, 2002
    I think you're spot on about maybe making a lighter fighter version. Something that beautifully crafted deserves to be worn at the belt out on the Brazos where life and death are separated by the flick of the wrist.

    Beautiful work by Sher:thumbup:
  15. Yangdu

    Yangdu [email protected] Himalayan Imports-Owner Moderator

    Apr 5, 2005
    Honest review, thank you munk
  16. CallsThunder


    May 10, 2004
    Thanks munk for the review and SteelyGunz for the pics. Overall, it looks nice. I'm not normally a fan of multiple pieces put together for the handle but this one looks nice. The belt loop strap is what one should be. Thanks all and especially Yangdu. It's great to see new pieces coming out.

    edit: great kid pic too
  17. hollowdweller


    Sep 22, 2003
    good looking design:thumbup:

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