Ultimate AK Bowie

Discussion in 'Koster Knives' started by Daniel Koster, Jul 25, 2006.

  1. Daniel Koster

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

    Oct 18, 2001
    Here's what I consider the Ultimate AK Bowie. We didn't throw caution completely to the wind...:eek:....but sure tried!

    The owner (who I believe is indeed pleased...:D) initially requested a regular "upgrade", with one change: make it a hand-and-a-half handle.

    Well, the more I got to thinking about what this person was going to use this for...:eek:....I knew I was going to have to make it mean-lookin, tough and high performance - all at the same time.

    So, I contacted him to see if he would accept a few "revisions" to his initial plan.:D

    Here's a complete list of the modifications:

    • Handle removed, cleaned down to bare metal
    • Tang forged out to a longer, curved shape
    • Blade re-heat-treated with clay to get a quench line (hamon)
    • False edge ground in (and hardened as well)
    • Handrubbed finish
    • Convex edge
    • Mild steel fittings
    • Black fiber spacers
    • Stabilized wood handle: Vitex & Olive
    • Through-tang pinned at the butt with a mosaic pin
    • I added my Maker's Mark because of how much work was done
    Well...can't think of anything else right now...so without further ado...the knife that's been in the works for over a year-and-a-half (did I mention being very, very slow at filling orders? :foot: ) :


  2. Daniel Koster

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

    Oct 18, 2001
    Here are some progress pics I made:

    First, a pic showing the stripped blade next to a drawing I made several years ago:


    The blue lines indicate what I wanted to see done. The red lines show the problem areas - tang not straight with blade (curves upward), hardened zone not long enough, etc.

    Next is a pic of the tang "as forged":


    I still needed to draw it out a little more, and set the shoulders for a guard.


    Finally, the blade after being heat-treated with clay - to create a hamon line, and harden the false edge as well.


    I was real happy that through all the process of heat-treating, forging, etc...I was able to keep Bura's marks intact, as well as the sword of shiva.

    Overall, a fun (but exhausting) project. Aren't they all?
  3. jmpstock


    Apr 30, 2004
    Very nice!
    Great work, Daniel.

    It reminds me a bit of the big Jack Crain blade from
    the movie "Predator"

  4. Svashtar


    Dec 28, 2003
    Beautiful! I love the desert ironwood handle on the one you did for me, but if I could make two changes to mine based on this it would be to angle the front guard back like this, which I'm convinced would make a better fit for the sub-hilt, and take up the ricasso area like you did here which just looks better. Of course, had you done that you would have probably had to retemper as well.

    I'm sure this balances very well also because of the longer tang.

    Thanks for sharing. I hope to get one of these someday, your schedule and willingness to do it permitting!

    Would you happen to have before and after length/weight specs? Mine ended up at 14" and 32 oz.

  5. Daniel Koster

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

    Oct 18, 2001
    oops...I always forget stuff like that. It's already boxed up. IIRC, the balance is around the front of the cho. It doesn't seem as heavy as yours was, Norm. Might just be me...or, like you said, the longer handle.
  6. Bri in Chi

    Bri in Chi

    May 28, 2003
    Pendentive does it again. :D
  7. Dave Rishar

    Dave Rishar

    Oct 25, 2004
    I can't see how the owner could not be pleased. It went from a simple idea to Dan's own vision of what one of these knives could become -- very much in line with what the owner had in mind, although he didn't quite know it at the time. Never mind that there were several hurdles along the way, at least one of which was potentially fatal to the project. Dan handled it. (Ha-ha! "Handled" it!)

    Yessiree, that D.R. character is a pretty lucky guy, whoever he is.

    As for the added maker's mark, I consider that to be the functional equivalent of Caroll Shelby putting his name on a Mustang.
  8. SamuraiDave


    Apr 6, 2001
    I saw that on your website, and man... that is awsome!
  9. SamuraiDave


    Apr 6, 2001
    double post... Doh!
  10. RedEdge77


    Jul 13, 2005
    Dude thats freakin SWEET! Nice work!:thumbup:
  11. Kismet

    Kismet Basic Member Basic Member

    Jan 30, 2002
  12. Leatherface


    Dec 3, 2005
    A work of art bro...

  13. Madmanamus


    Dec 21, 2003
    That is gorgeous!

    Take care.
  14. Big Bob

    Big Bob

    Oct 13, 1999
    If anyone's work is worth a year-and-a-half wait, its yours, Daniel. Great work! :thumbup:

  15. Yvsa


    May 18, 1999
    Dayum but that is Beautiful Daniel!!!!:thumbup: :cool: :D :thumbup: Two thumbs up fer shure!!!!
  16. Kevin the grey

    Kevin the grey

    Aug 26, 2005
    I was going to ask if people used olive wood for handles . The wood I saw was nice and it doesn,t look as good as that .
  17. Josh Feltman

    Josh Feltman

    Feb 12, 2001
    Yowza! That's beautiful!
  18. Fiddleback

    Fiddleback Knifemaker Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    Oct 19, 2005
    Dan, I am speachless. I recently got an AK bowie. Been staring at it for weeks. It needs something done, and I'm certainly gonna give it a try, but what???

    Great work, as always. I'm so lucky to know you!
  19. BruiseLeee


    Sep 7, 2001
    :) .
  20. tsf


    Jun 13, 2004

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