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Thoughts about collectible knives...

Joined
Jan 2, 2007
Messages
46
My dad was a collector for the intrinsic value of items. He saw things created to reflect intelligence in the creator of the time and the history to be something to be maintained as a reflection of culture, times and creative abilities.

With antiques such as pottery or furniture...the word 'reproduction' is used to define an item that is not an antique but was re-created to embrace an era in time.

With knives...I am hearing the word 'fake' being used. Outside of fraudulent advertising...I am not fully understanding this word usage.

Reproductions in other antiques hold a value noting the reproductive quality.

Is it that there are just more scamming involved in knife collecting (people attempting to recreate a knife with the intent to deceive buyers rather than the anticipation that a reproduction would be identifiable)?

Thank you for educating me on this and please excuse my ignorance in failing to understand the difference amongst collectibles. :eek:
 
Is it that there are just more scamming involved in knife collecting (people attempting to recreate a knife with the intent to deceive buyers rather than the anticipation that a reproduction would be identifiable)?

Yes.

Or that certain design or other elements are lifted from other knives and claimed to be original.
 
I've only seen knives called fakes when they are copies of models still in production, and advertised as the genuine article. Other than that, there are a couple Cold Steel fixed blades that copy Randall and Loveless without mentioning them, and all the hullabaloo over the Vietnam Tomahawk and who 'owns' it.
 
A fake is misrepresenting itself as an original.
A reproduction is a tribute to the original.

I hope that helps :D
 
To me a fake is a WWII Katana bieng sold as a Samurai sword, but thats another discusion. A fake in knife collecting is a low quality duplicate of a makers work or a chinese copy of a actual knife from someone elses knife company. If you get a junk folder with a famous makers name on it, you probably have a fake. If you find a new Al Mar for $10 at a gunshow its a fake. If you are buying Loveless bowies then you probably know enough about knives to know a loveless from a fake.
 
Ebbtide...so you are suggesting that fraudulent advertising exists more in knife collecting?

hardheart...a knife created to commemorate an era that was not from that era might also to my recent discovery in the Levine 'identification' forums be considered a fake.

DaveH...do you know if there is any industry standards or oversight that might be afforded to consumers to evoke good faith amongst sellers?

It seems sad that collectors should have to wade through scammers just to do what they enjoy and love. **sigh.

BigJim...so 'fake' is just a term used instead of reproduction due to the poor craftmanship...not the 'actual' 'inability' for collectors to note a reproduction when seeing one?

Thanks for your honest responses. :)
 
Daddy, dont get the wrong idea. Most knife sellers are on the level. But as in anything involving money there are unscroupulous people. Dont buy knives that seem like they are "to good to be true". Dotn buy from the guy at the gunshow who has spyderco for $10.00 and dont go buying any $5,000 knives from "some guy" and you should be fine. The better knive dealers out there would never pass off a fake and would spot it in a second. If you are worried about properly identifying antiques thats something best left to a specialist until you have enough knowledge to do it yourself.
 
BigJim--thank you. Do you think it is easier to be fraudulent in knife collecting over that of other collectibles (a recreation aimed at deceit is easier, etc.)?

I've not bought knives personally, but my deceased dad did and I have inherited his collection and have found this site and hoped it to be valuable in my research.

Outside of knives...I've only dealt with antique shops who have been very honest in stating this or that is a reproduction or 'they are not sure' and the item is selling for it's intrinsic value as a reproduction (applied with uncertainty). Yet with knives it seems different. A seller on ebay states uncertainty of a knives history and sells this as being above a reproduction (which I would never take the knife to be less than a reproduction if uncertainty is stated -- just as is true with other antiques).

My thought is this. I keep and would buy a reproduction for it's embrace of an era, quality in craftmanship and a 'general like' for the item. Am I wrong to state I am not seeing this as much in knife collecting -- since 'authenticity' seems to be a greater concern rather than the creation of a great reproduction?
 
"reproduction" is marketing slang that sells more junk than "fake". A reproduction is a copy of something.

Rarely is a reproduction of good quality, and in that rare instance, it gains no value by being a copy of another item. It can only be judged by it's own merits.

for instance, if there is no antique knife it was copied from, It is 100% fake. It has no intrinsic value. If it is of high quality, it might have some practical value, but only due to it's functionality as a knife.

If a modern company makes a new knife based on a famous model of knife, then it is a reproduction, and marketed as such. It is judged on it's own quality as a knife. If the knife is crappy, but looks just like an original, it has no intrinsic value.
 
so you are suggesting that fraudulent advertising exists more in knife collecting?

More then then what? Otherwise yes, as it exists pretty much everywhere

a knife created to commemorate an era that was not from that era might also to my recent discovery in the Levine 'identification' forums be considered a fake.

I'd say it depends on how it was sold, if clearly indicated a reproduction, then it's not a fake. But many knives, especially older reproductions the provenance is not as clear.

do you know if there is any industry standards or oversight that might be afforded to consumers to evoke good faith amongst sellers?

Not that I'm aware of.

so 'fake' is just a term used instead of reproduction due to the poor craftmanship...not the 'actual' 'inability' for collectors to note a reproduction when seeing one?

IMO reproductions and commemorative knives are of lesser, sometimes much lesser quality then the originals. The reproductions are trading on the rarity, desirability or good reputation of the originals.

As such, perhaps the word "fake" might be used casually to describe them.
 
Even if a knife is only to be held in a collection and not used, people still want it to be made to some performance standard. Even modern knives are treated this way, you can see some people speak the virtues of the performance of the steel used in a blade, but who don't even open mail with it. Of course, then others say every knife must be used, and collecting them is wasting them.

I just buy what I like.
 
After reading your thread in the levine forum, I think "fake" is correctly used in the case of your Hitler knife. The knife never existed in the first place so it's not a reproduction, it's a fake.

My dad was a collector for the intrinsic value of items. He saw things created to reflect intelligence in the creator of the time and the history to be something to be maintained as a reflection of culture, times and creative abilities.

Intrinsic is not the word you want. A knife with intrinsic value is valuable because it's a good knife.

A knife that's valuable only because it's symbolizes a reflection of culture does not always have any intrinsic value.
 
In other areas of antiques, there are wonderful reproductions of older pieces that to the buyer holds the intrinsic value you state (functionability, style and general apprecriation). I am speaking of furniture, glassware, pottery here.

As well there are creations that are more of a memoriavilla value (for example deitz sporting latterns to me aren't desireable because thier usage isn't as interesting as was that of the railroad latterns that my dad collected. I look at a railway lattern and can picture the era and usage of the lattern as well as the craftmanship). A better example though would be 'Elvis' memoriavilla...that is of a modern make. Collectors buy these not for their age or antiquity, but the instinsic quality of 'liking the items.'

Yet the apprecriation of craftmanship in other areas of collectibles that I have seen is there and I have seen wonderful reproduction of victorian lamps, etc.

So a collector (let's say they like Tiffany lamps, which wonderful reproductions exist in) and they desire the item at a lesser than Tiffany price, but a greater than worth as a lamp price (the buyer would not see the item as 'junk' because the buyer likes the craftmanship, style and reminiscence of that time era).

Sooo...with this in mind...Isn't the desire of a collector for a knife based on 'liking' the craftmanship and appearance rather than it's actual value if well created whether deemed a reproduction or an item created for remembrance of an era or not?

I just can't understand the word 'fake' unless deceptive advertising is attached to the item. :eek:

I can not see the point of functionably in collecting excess of items...they are collected because they are liked in this instance (at least from my perspective). Am I wrong?

"reproduction" is marketing slang that sells more junk than "fake". A reproduction is a copy of something.

Rarely is a reproduction of good quality, and in that rare instance, it gains no value by being a copy of another item. It can only be judged by it's own merits.

for instance, if there is no antique knife it was copied from, It is 100% fake. It has no intrinsic value. If it is of high quality, it might have some practical value, but only due to it's functionality as a knife.

If a modern company makes a new knife based on a famous model of knife, then it is a reproduction, and marketed as such. It is judged on it's own quality as a knife. If the knife is crappy, but looks just like an original, it has no intrinsic value.
 
I'm using the word 'intrinsic' for it's meaning that an item actually has an 'independent inner' worth to a collector rather than merely a 'monetary worth.' My dad held on to a 'world's best dad' statue I gave him and placed this in his collection of antique nick nacks and this held a greater intrinsic value than that of other items of 'true monetary' value to him personally. A 'collection' is 'excess' and it's tough for me to see excess being held for functionability...

but you and Rat bring up a good point in which knives can differ...we actually use these in sport and for practical uses. So they are not merely something to look at as a lot of other collectibles are.

As far as the Hitler knife...it is really quality craftmanship. I understand the logic behind it being viewed as a fake because it wasn't created in the era depicted or a reproduction of an era item. However, the word 'fake' implies a deceptive intent or 'imposter' of something. Why couldn't the knife be viewed as a memoriavilla knife created for that purpose (absent the problem with the advertisement I posted). As a memorivilla item, to me...the only problem with the Hitler knife is the advertisement of this knife suggesting 'beliefs' rather than documented proof on the origin of it's blades. It is special to me because my dad owned it in his collection and for it's rarity, so I will not sell it as it holds intrinsic value to me. I completely understand false advertising...so I am not disputing the Hitler knife in the creation of this thread. I am only trying to understand the reason 'fake' is used versus 'reproduction' or 'memorvialla item' as used in other areas of antiques that I personally am familiar with.


After reading your thread in the levine forum, I think "fake" is correctly used in the case of your Hitler knife. The knife never existed in the first place so it's not a reproduction, it's a fake.



Intrinsic is not the word you want. A knife with intrinsic value is valuable because it's a good knife.

A knife that's valuable only because it's symbolizes a reflection of culture does not always have any intrinsic value.
 
Thank you. Much like you -- I just buy what I like. :)

Even if a knife is only to be held in a collection and not used, people still want it to be made to some performance standard. Even modern knives are treated this way, you can see some people speak the virtues of the performance of the steel used in a blade, but who don't even open mail with it. Of course, then others say every knife must be used, and collecting them is wasting them.

I just buy what I like.
 
I guess we use the word intrinsic differently and oppositely from each other.

The value of the statue you mention is not within the statute itself, it's value was placed on it externally for some other reason. That's not intrinsic value.

A 'collection' is 'excess' and it's tough for me to see excess being held for functionability...

Do you mean functionality?

As your example a person can place value anywhere they want, if they choose to see value in a collection to excess, that's totally up to them.

However I do view the knife as being created as a memoriavilla item for those interested in that time era rather than created to deceive anyone (if the advertisement didn't exist)? Am I wrong?

Theoretically you are correct. For example some one may buy "Art & Crafts" style furniture, because that's what they like.

However in the specific instance of your knife, IMO it was intentionally created to deceive.
 
I consider any Hitler or Nazi paraphanalia to have absolutely zero value, no matter how well made the item is. I would be ashamed to have anything commemorating or advertising Hitler or the Nazis in my collection. A possible exception, a professionally-authenticated original item.

So...
-------------------------------------------------

Let's take another example, an authentic antique Marbles knife. The original Marbles' knife has value, both because of it's rarity as an antique and it's usefulness as a high-quality knife.

Someone makes a knife identical to the historic knife, stamps it Marbles' and adds a patina in an attempt to make it look older than it really is. No matter the knife's quality, it is worthless to a collector because it is a deliberate fake.

Now say a low-end Chinese company makes a knife that's similar in appearance to that antique Marbles'. That knife has no value also, either as a collectible nor as a quality product.

But what if a high-quality company makes a knife that's a copy of the Marbles' design, and they call it a "Marbles'-inspired knife". This knife would have some interest and value based on it's similarity to the original, but the true value of this knife is tied more closely to the quality and usefulness of the product.

-Bob
 
^ or how about actual Marbles brand knives, foreign made of inexpensive materials, or those made by Camillus-nothing really wrong with their manufacture, but they are sold as Marbles but not made by Marbles
 
Franklin mint collectable knives....value ,quality,real, fantasty....in $ not very much,unless given to you buy your kids when they were younger,
then they have intristic value....which has value only to you
and them and you cannot put a $ price on intristic value as there is none.
I have several valuable Franklin mint knives that are worthless in $.
I love them and display them in my home....my real knives are in the safes.
 
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