What Should I Do?

Old Knife Guy

Sep 19, 2000
I just realized that December, 2000 is almost here. THREE YEARS AGO, I ordered a handmade CQC-7 from Ernie. The delivery times have been pushed out again and again. Times and tastes are changing; my collection has filled in a lot of the missing pieces and other makers are coming on the scene. Additionally, knives are collectible commodities, and like Beanie Babies, the tactical knife market might one day collapse. Needless to say, I'm wondering if this project is worth my continued support. Now, you guys love and live knives, you've seen them come and go, and you've been disappointed. Should I wait this out, or invest the +400 bucks in something else?--OKG
If I were you I'd call or email Ernie and ask how much longer it will be, then you can make your decision based on what he says. If he says 2 more weeks, you can wait that out. If he says 8 more months you could rethink, or tell him that you don't wait that long, and does he want to get it to you sooner or forget about it. If you withdraw your order, I'm sure he won't have any problem selling the knife to someone else. At least that's what I would do.

Jason aka medusaoblongata
"I have often laughed at the weaklings who call themselves kind because they have no claws"

- Zarathustra

Congratulations on your place in line. Wish I had another one on order.

As to your question, knife designs do tend to be trendy things don't they?
Personally I buy knives that I like, not as "investments". If it's an investment your seeking, your $400 may better serve you in a more traditional type of investment strategy. But there again, as Ernie only required a $25 deposit (and not even that in later years), you could still have done that and pocketed the interest to boot.

If I were you, I'd keep my place in line. It's not costing you anything to wait.

Tastes do change over time. If when you get that call that your knife is done, you could pass on it or you could be a real stand up guy and pass your newly finished, unwanted knife to someone else. I did just such a thing recently.

Two years ago I had ordered a knife from a custom maker. By the time the knife was done, I had lost some interest in it, but knew that someone would love to buy a beautiful, collectable knife at the makers "retail", but didn't have the fore thought to get in line years ago.

I told the maker I would call them back the next day to make the shipping arrangements and emailed a few folks. A buyer was found in under an hour.

Everyone was happy. The maker got paid for his work and a collector got a piece for their collection that they were not counting on (isn't that the sweetest way to get a knife).

Personally, I didn't make a dime on the deal, just helped some folks out and still fulfilled my part of the order.

Just my thoughts on the subject.

To John Hollister: You're right. Sitting in line is NOT costing me anything. To be fair, I do make inquiry calls, and that's part of the reason this is starting to irk me. During that same time I have bought 11 Microtechs, 5 Emersons, 5 Benchmades and 2 Kershaws. I'm a loyal customer. I look at myself as a knife lover and collector, but in the back of mind is the thought that if I get financially strung out, I'll never be able to afford the CQC-7 when, and if, it's ready. Am I letting good deals go by because I know the custom is coming? Oh well, after Christmas, I'm calling again. Who knows, maybe I'll be able to do what you've done, and gracefully step away.--OKG
I think John is right. It isn't costing you anything to wait in line for the knife. If you still want it when it is done, great, but if you don't want it then someone else will. Somehow I don't think he will have any
trouble selling it. I would just keep my place in line.
I'm on the list for several custom makers. Heck, one has a wait so long that I've been on the waiting list that will allow me to get on the waiting list for about a year. (I kid you not) So I feel your pain.

I'm waiting on multiple knives from one maker that tells me his is currently turning away potential customers. He doesn't want to be known as a maker with a huge wait, so folks simply can't place an order.

Ernie has recently stopped taking orders as well. I'd be willing to place an order and wait the time (again
), but I didn't make the cut off. My bad.

<u>Posted by Old Knife Guy</u>
Who knows, maybe I'll be able to do what you've done, and gracefully step away.

OKG, stick it out. Stay on the list and hope for the best. If, when the time comes, you decide you don't want it, pass the deal on. May I suggest that there are lots of folks out there that would love a Custom Emerson. If it comes to that, try and get it to someone that doesn't have any Emerson Customs already. Instead of making it one more in someone's collection, make a new collector.

Take care

I'm sorry but I don't agree with the majority. If you were told a certain time and have had numerous promises broken let alone the fact you are the one who has to keep making the calls then I say move on. It would be different if the person was calling you and apologizing and letting you know he was still running behind but that doesn't seem to be the case. You are having to make the call and promises are being made then broken. Besides I think three years to wait on someone to make anything is way too long. I am a man of my word and I expect the same. If an unforeseen circumstance arised then that would be different. Find yourself another. Just my opinion!? Dave
To Dave Costin: No need to apologize for your opinion, it's the reason I started this thread. Sure, I like the knife, but when I read knife magazines where custom craftsmen are asking for clients, sometimes I get a bit miffed. And that's the way it goes--first mad, then anxious, then I feel stupid like I'm a sucker. When I first placed the order they said 18 months. Then it was two years, then they said they were making the CQC-6 models for next few months, but the CQC-7 models were on tap. Now that schedule is past--and so it goes. I just wanted to start this thread to see if others were having the same disappointments. And to be fair, I'd like to hear from guys like Darrel Ralph and Ken Onion and find out their side.--OKG
Screw it!!! Cancel your order and move on. Granted, Emerson makes some damn good knives, but I'll be damned if I have to wait longer than promised. It is not good business to promise something and not deliver. This has been on going with Emerson for years. It is ridiculous!!! IMO you should scrap Emerson and look for a maker that cares about his customers. There are plenty out there to choose from.

"Don't interfere with anything in the Constitution. That must be maintained, for it is the only safeguard of our liberties.
----Abraham Lincoln
Hey, if it's bothering you, shrug it off, cancel the order, and forget about it. But first you might want to do a search in the wanted section of exchange here for CQC-7...even if you max a credit card on the knife, you could recover your investment pretty quickly. Or surf on over to www.robertsoncustomcutlery.com and take a look at the prices on a secondary market CQC-6...food for thought
Well, I may be the LAST person that you'd take advice from OKG, but I'd say go with your gut instinct. It's obviously bothering you to quite some degree .... and I'd chance to guess that if and when you do recieve the completed knife, it's "personal" value to you might be tainted by all the hassle you've been through just to get it, thus making it emotionally worthless in your mind. Does that make sense?

If you do choose to "keep your place in line", all I can say is you're a better man than I would be, given the same situation.

Best wishes either way, my friend.

"A Szívemben A Vas Es Az Acél Orök Ereje Van."

Crushing the weak since 1970 .... the Demon has spoken.
This has been a long and intensely debated topic at the Emerson forum. A long wait time and no return correspondence is a bit fustrating I' ll agree. If you gave a $25 deposit, then it isn' t too bad to wait it out considering the total for the price of the custom and the time that you' ve already waited. If your tastes have changed down the line or if a financial snag is experienced then simply decline the custom at proximity of delivery. Or as a few have exercised, accept it and sell it to a buyer who will pay the going price at that particular time. Huge instant profit! Nothing wrong with that but I simply don' t play that "game" as I' ve chosen not to participate at the raffles to win a chance to buy one of Ernies customs at the recent NY Show. On the other hand if I wanted one real bad for personal use without the several years wait, I wouldn' t have hesitated. Your choice...


[This message has been edited by Nakano 2 (edited 11-27-2000).]
If someone told me that I would have to wait 2 or 3 years to get something, and I accepted, that would be fine. If they told me that I would have to wait a year and it took three, I would not be that interested in doing business with that person or company.

Is knife making that different from other trades? I'm a builder. I make promises on starting dates, and on dates of completion, all the time. I have regular (repeat) customers and new customers (who I hope will be repeat customers). If I told you that the start date on your addition, or kitchen remodel, was 12 months out, and I hadn't showed up after three years; how long do you think I would be in business?

Integrity (doing what one commits to do) is just as important as producing a fine product.

My $.02,

He who has smelt the smoke is never free again...

If you do decide to toss it, have them put me in your spot. I'll finish the wait.

Last name is spelled "H O L L I S T E R". They have my address on file.

Just a thought

From a strictly financial sense, any dealer would gladly take a place in the line since practically any Emerson custom is a fast sell with 100+% profit. There is a fierce demand for his knives. Just check out the current prices on Les Robertson's site. I think Emerson knives are well designed and wouldn't think twice about buying one at Ernie's prices, but I don't think I wanna wait 5 years for one. Hell, I may not live that long.

Waiting years for a knife tends to kill any enthusiasm for it, especially if the end is nowhere in sight. One of my knife buddies has been waiting on his Emerson for 3 years (completion promised in 5). However, my advice, is to stick it out and get the knife. If you don't like it, sell it at a healthy profit then buy 2 or 3 other knives that you DO like.

I just sent a polite E-mail to Emerson Knives asking for the disposition and a reply about my pending order. I'll keep you posted. I am also going through one of my "how dare they" days where part of me wants to tell them where to 'sheath' the knife. But I haven't lost my sense of humor, and I'm also doing the following:
1). Checking John Hollister's credit to see if he can handle my price.
2). Sending a letter to Comrade Chang's mom asking her if it's okay to send THE BOX to Chang for future manufacture.
3). Buying a Hallmark card to send to Metal Demon for doubting him.
4). Wondering what I'm going to tell Classified00 after opining that double bevels were better than chisel grinds.
As you can see, I'll be busy--or I can read 'War and Peace' until my knife comes...--OKG
All this IMO.

1) You should immediately demand your money back plus interest, for poor business practices. By letting it slide you're encouring him and all other makers it's OK to forget about the customers. Why put up with it?

2) I think a large component of knife collecting is fashion, as such a knife delivered years late has lost it's appeal. The world's moved on, and what everyone thought was cool a while back is just so-so now.

Think of it this way, for the past three years you could have been enjoying this knife if it had been delivered. Since it hasn't, the cost of this knife will now be $400 plus 3 years of fun you DIDN't have. Is it still worth it?

3) I you're happy giving away money and never receiving any thing or service in return that feel free to send me money.

Hey Old Knife Guy, I'll take your place in line, and send you your deposit, Promptly, not Three years from now...

I agree with Redvenom. Just wait it out, get the knife, and turn around and sell it for enough to fund you more knives. You have already waited this long, and I suppose you are already looking at a set price. The price is not going up as the years pass is it? Anyway, hold on and look at the profit you'll make. It will be worth it!

Art Sigmon
"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me"
Php. 4:13

"For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword"
Heb. 4:12