1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.
  2. CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED! Live stream of the winners being picked: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jJ6xurJWkhs

    Hey folks! We're having a Becker Giveaway over in the Giveaway forum, check it out and have a chance to win a free Becker 4 Machax, Becker 5 Magnum Camp, or Becker 15 Short Trailing Point!

What would you like to see next from me?

Discussion in 'Osprey Knife & Tool' started by Osprey Knife & Tool, Jun 11, 2017.

  1. Osprey Knife & Tool

    Osprey Knife & Tool Moderator Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jun 4, 2014
    I wanted to get a feel for what you all are interested in seeing from me over the next several months.
    I am looking for this to serve as a way to gauge where the demand is at so I can zero in on that a little more.
    The more input I get the better idea I can get as to where to go, I have many directions I would like to go but I would like to make my main focus on what you all want or need at the moment.
    I am not going to take any specific request on this thread, I would like you guys to be specific but not pertaining to any one individual knife please.

    What particular model and thickness?

    What kind of handle material like more micarta or G10, Carbon Fiber, Wood etc..

    More Bolsters or Less?

    What Colors, example what color Micarta or G10's?

    Steels? I am working with CPM154, W2, occasionally 1095, I currently am working on getting proficient in S35vn and Trying out 3v, 80crv2
    Which steel are you interested in?

    Where do you use you knife mostly?

    What kind of new models would you like to see in the future?

    You guys are getting the Idea, I would like most of these answered and please feel free to add too if you like..
    I look forward to your replies
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2017
  2. Panthera tigris

    Panthera tigris Apex Predator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Apr 21, 2012
    Chris, you know I have some thoughts here. I would encourage you to keep making what feels right and what moves you forward as a craftsman and as a business.

    From a user perspective, I would like to see you optimize the ergonomics of a few core models and then to test and implement your new heat treat tools.

    I would be more likely to pay for a forged version of something like the raptor in a new steel than to collect different models under otherwise identical parameters.

    Forged 3/32" or thinner raptor

    I would like to see textured micartas or G10 as your base offering, to keep costs down, and LE serialized editions of the fancy materials.

    From a utility perspective texturing such as rope-cut grooves or file work on a handle would be very appealing to me.

    Less, with the exception of special offers.

    Black Micarta and white G10 as foundation materials.

    I am actually a fan of 5160 for large blades and 52100 for smaller blades. 80CrV2 is a big win. Anything you can forge.

    You might even explore something like elmax for smaller blades.

    Around the house cutting things down and EDC tasks around and about.

    I would like to see small width blades and thinner profiles for my own pocket uses. Something like a Osprey K/T fixed sodbuster or swayback jack would be super cool if the patterns were close.

    From a philosophical perspective and as someone who uses knives daily, there are really only so many that I am likely to purchase before needs are met. Hence, the above suggestions are not only based on what I would want to see but what I think would help you grow to a broader market. Focusing on low cost, standard handle materials with utility-based modifications such as texturing will keep cost down for new users. Introducing forged fancy versions from time to time in newer steels will keep us coming back for something special.
    Gemini Blades and Tutone like this.
  3. NJBillK

    NJBillK Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 27, 2014
    I think there are three particular models that would be a good platform for a Friction folder.
    In order of ease of clearances and blade/handle shape for ease of tucking the blade in.
    1) Trail Hand
    2) Mamushi
    3) Raptor

    The Trail hand easily has the clearance for a pivot and tucking the bellied blade into the handle shape quite nicely.

    The Mamushi would be close, and might need the blade height shortened a bit or the belly brought back a bit to be more gradual to clear the standoffs/pins, but it should be alright.

    The Raptor would work nicely, though the very tip might have to be dropped a bit to keep it from being proud. But, it should work out well, especially if a little bit of height is added to the handle (possibly as little as 1/8" on the underside, while maintaining the original shaping).
  4. varga49

    varga49 Platinum Member Platinum Member

    May 1, 2016
    Thanks Chris for putting us to work on these questions. Though I've got quite a few of your blades now I might be the most atypical user since I am not, [for better or worse] a bush crafter. Most of my work with knives, unless I'm processing some 4 legged animal protein, is in the kitchen. All this said I'll try to convey my wants

    What particular model and thickness?
    I have to go with Pantera on this one " a Forged 3/32" or thinner Raptor" will likely be my next blade of yours

    What kind of handle material like more micarta or G10, Carbon Fiber, Wood etc..
    For kitchen work, something to keep the costs down again quoting/paraphrasing Pantera" textured micarta or g10" for my collectables Wood! I really love that exhibition grade koa on the Apache...I almost jumped on that one but had to reign myself in at the last moment

    More Bolsters or Less?
    Even for Kitchen I like a classy look, Though I understand this increases cost, as it should, I like bolsters that accent and create eye appealing contrasts!

    What Colors, example what color Micarta or G10's?
    This is no secret to anyone who knows of my preference to Ivory G10. But also black, olive green, and red

    Steels? I am working with CPM154, W2, occasionally 1095, I currently am working on getting proficient in S35vn and Trying out 3v, 80crv2
    Which steel are you interested in?

    Wouldn't it be great if I was more familiar with those steels so I'll leave this to guy's who are better versed in steels, like you Jarrett, Phillip and Phil
    FWIW I like CPM154 just fine

    Where do you use your knife mostly?
    Kitchen and in the field dressing out a hog or a whitetail.

    What kind of new models would you like to see in the future?
    Likely nobody else will say this but I'd like a dedicated boning knife [ a raptor style], a 8 to 10' chef style knife and a Nikiri style blade, but that's just me.
    All this said I absolutely am blown away with the Nomad in terms of overall usefulness AND aesthetics. I would love to see a larger version in the future.

    Chris I hope this was helpful! I really appreciate this kind of interaction!
    Panthera tigris likes this.
  5. Wurrwulf

    Wurrwulf Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 3, 2015
    I'd like to see more 1/16" S35VN on the market. I love my Warthog, and I'd be curious to see how one would look with a bit shorter height on the blade. I prefer natural handle materials and wood in particular.

    Edit to add: I mostly use my knives in the kitchen and at the dinner table.
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2017
  6. Osprey Knife & Tool

    Osprey Knife & Tool Moderator Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jun 4, 2014
    Jarrett, I very much appreciate your input, I have many different directions I want to go in, but I do realize that I also need to make sales in order to fund my growth and business.

    That being said I will continue to focus on where I want to take my craft as continuously growing and learning.
    I also think it is equally important to listen to your fans and to understand where the demand is at, I think I can find a healthy balance here with the help of you guy's feedback.

    I do intend to tweak a few models in my lineup a bit, mostly just refining the overall shape and ergos like you mentioned.

    I have been using the new oven, it took me a few cycles to adjust to the new set-up, but I became acquainted in no time and I am enjoying and seeing the benefits of the new equipment.

    The Cryo is still on the list, and is getting closer, I decided to hold of and do some more studying ask some questions. I would like to try a batch or 2 of the 3v without the cryo so I know I have a good heat treat foundation to work off of before I start throwing extra equations in there. It will also give me a baseline to compare and contrast to.

    I do plan on forging, I didn't pay an arm and a leg for that anvil just to texture on LOL. By the time I got it mounted and ready to use, it was already time to get my head in the game for Blade Show.
    I knew myself and can get lost in forging for a good amount of time. I have been shopping around for forging tools I will need, various hammers and tongs. It has been well over a year or more since I have forged a blade, and I am afraid I am a bit rusty. I am sure I will end up trashing a few before one is ready to sell. I am pretty confident I will get back in the groove in no time. I had a couple of years worth of practice on the weekends forging knives Apprenticing under Stephan Fowler J.S. before I focused on Mostly Stainless Steel and Stock Removal.

    It should be interesting to watch! And hope to share the progress on forging soon!

    What particular model and thickness?
    Starting out I will probably forge more basic shapes and medium size thickness and profiles like the Apache, Hunter and Ranger, as I get back into the groove of forging I will work my way down to smaller and thinner knives as well as bigger and thicker. The progression should not take to long I hope.

    What kind of handle material like more micarta or G10, Carbon Fiber, Wood etc.. ?
    I would agree with the first half of this. After doing a bunch of CF and such, I am planning on focusing more on G10's ,Micarta sandblasted handles as you mentioned. I had a hunch this is where I should go so it is great to see confirmation from one of you.

    The latter part of your answer is something I have thought about but would need to find an efficient and cost effective way to serialize the blades. I am open to ideas and suggestions.

    I have looking into checkering files and jimping files and this is something I would like to explore along with decorative filings on the spine.

    More Bolsters or Less?
    Dually noted

    What Colors, example what color Micarta or G10's?
    I can't disagree with this but I would add natural and od green micartas and G10's in there as well.


    I have not had any experience with 5160 or 52100 forging or using, I do have experience forging 1095 and w2 so that is where I will start out and I will spring form there.

    Elmax is a steel I am familiar with using, I am not sure about forging but either way the user benefits draw me to exploring the possibilities

    Where do you use you knife mostly?
    Looks like your knife habits are similar to mine for the most part.

    I like the ideas you have presented here, you have mentioned them before in conversation and have been bouncing the idea around in my head, now that I know I can grind 1/16' steel I feel ready to design something like this soon.

    I like the second part of this answer and share the same opinion it is a direction I have been working towards making become a reality. Again I appreciate your fresh ideas and input we share a lot the same ideas which is refreshing.
    Tutone likes this.
  7. Osprey Knife & Tool

    Osprey Knife & Tool Moderator Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jun 4, 2014

    Its funny you mentioned this, I could envision several of my models as folders, this is a direction I would also like to explore. Unfortunately I wouldn't know where to begin at the moment, that's not to say I wouldn't like to learn or give it a try. I think the forging is closer on the horizon than folders. But I am glad to see you are interested and confirms my hunches about several making useful folders. I will have to educate myself on the design and construction of folders if you have any resources you would like to suggest I would like to know them.
    Thank you for your contribution!
    NJBillK likes this.
  8. NJBillK

    NJBillK Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 27, 2014
    The only bit of research on folder construction that I have done has been on friction folders particularly. I took a Becker BK11 and turned that into one.
    In the process of research, I came across a few message boards, and other sites that go over sorting out the pivot/stop pin relationship and handle pin placement.

    But to be honest, I only really had questions about pivot/stop pin location since the handle pins basically lay themselves out with the blade closed. As long as you have the clearance for the blade off of the pins/backspacer/barrel spacers when closed, you can draw your handle shape for your template around the blade shape based off of the pivot and stop pin.

    One of the main reasons I was suggesting a friction folder is that it allows you more creativity with handle combinations with the inclusion of a backspacer or barrel spacers. Backspacers can be tapered or left full with, solid, split opposing or aligning with the handle, drilled for a hidden lanyard hole, Ti pins can be Ano'd, et al...
  9. M4Super90

    M4Super90 Biochemical Superfreak Platinum Member

    Aug 26, 2008
    My favorites are the Trailhand and the K Raptor. Also, the one-off mini-mushi with the clipped blade has been an allstar due to the blade shape. I've really been wanting a Tusk, given how mush I like the Trailhand. I probably haven't given the Mamushi it's fair shake, since I received several in a short time frame and switched from one to another quickly. Plus, my Mamushi is 1/8, and I think I'd go 3/32 on the next one. So - 3/32.

    Synthetic. Wood has its place, but I really like the synthetic proprieties for everything I've used the OKT for to date. The blasted G10 particularly.

    I'm ambivalent, but I prefer them to be functional bolsters. To me all synthetic with bolsters is just be for looks, but synthetic bolsters over wood is functional.

    Duh. Blue. :)
    I enjoy cool monotone colors (I'm not a fan of layered G10s) with a contrasting pinstripe - black, gray, green, blue, etc. I think many of your models would look good in blasted OD micarta with lime stripe over black liners. I also really like the single jade over glow liners. I'd love to have a Tusk like that. Or even blue G10 over blue glow liners, or a a dark color with large glow dot.

    I know many don't like 3V because it can be hard to field sharpen. However, I think its great in the kitchen and once sharpened retains the edge longer. Many of my favorite users are 3V.

    Unfortunately, my work schedule has limited my field time these days, so the majority is EDC and kitchen duty.

    I'd like to see a model with less forward rake on the pommel, almost neutral on a Mamushi blade. Same for the Ranger or the new large unnamed model.
    Your laminated steel knife made me excited to see something along tanto lines.
    A mid sized cleaver-ish blade would also be a handy partner in the kitchen for the KRaptor .
  10. Osprey Knife & Tool

    Osprey Knife & Tool Moderator Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jun 4, 2014
    Part 1


    Your welcome the pleasure is all mine, and thank you to you and other for expressing their interests and ideas, I think it is important to have this sort of dialogue.
    I would not consider myself a Bushcrafter as well, I do have certain skillsets that translate over into Bushcrafting and it is a subject that I easily understand due to these skillsets.
    I have never really been one for labels, but I think it is important to understand where most of my customers and future customers are likely to use their knives.
    I started out making Bushcraft/General Purpose oriented knives due inpart to the market I had access to and the relative ease of design and execution. As my skill set has grown I have moved toward designing and executing more technically challenging and specialized knives.

    I will answer this the same as I did Pantera,
    Starting out I will probably forge more basic shapes and medium size thickness and profiles like the Apache, Hunter and Ranger, as I get back into the groove of forging I will work my way down to smaller and thinner knives as well as bigger and thicker. The progression should not take to long I hope.

    Seems to be a consensus so far here, and I agree with the direction. I do intend on sprinkling some special pieces of wood in there like the Koa you mentioned. About a year ago I was heavy into the wood and I have backed off of that considerably. I do have a weak spot for several species of wood, so rest assure it will continue to be in my offerings just not on any kind of regular basis.

    Agreed! And After all I want to get my knives in as many hands as possible so if I can do that by offering more cost effective combinations than decked out knifes few can afford than that is what I will do.
    As an Artist I do have the urge to create and individual an unique pieces each time. I am confident I can find the balance between cost effective users and special offerings that showcase my creativity and skill.

    I have grown quite fond of the Ivory G10 as well. The Ruby Red G10 I get I am a big fan of, but for some reason knives with mostly red handles are hard to move. I plan on stocking up on several colors of Micartas and G10's so you should see an influx of these materials soon. I am a fan of G10 and Micarta period for working knives, I do have a romance with Carbon Fiber, and it makes a suburb knife handle that will last longer than the steel itself. But it does add considerable cost to the blade and has its own challenges when working with it.
  11. Osprey Knife & Tool

    Osprey Knife & Tool Moderator Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jun 4, 2014

    Part 2

    I don't ever see myself not working with CPM154 and consider it one of my core materials. I have become so familiar and comfortable with this steel. The heat treat is spot on IMO and it has so much to offer for me as a knifemaker and you as the user without much compromise. CPM154 with my heat treat regiment I feel confident will perform outstanding for knife in my current line-up.

    I do see however the need to increase my repertoire of steels for more specialized tasks, and sense I feel I have my heat treatment on my CPM154 dialed in I don't see any problems with this. Like with the CPM154 I would want to experiment with new alloys to obtain the optimal performance for the given task.

    W2, and 1095 are both excellent simple alloys with a High carbon content, the W2 is in a nutshell composite wise a 1095 with a little bit of chromium and vanadium which helps with the grain structure, increases wear resistance and adds better shock resistance than 1095.

    Both are used in a wide variety of applications from small EDC knives to large choppers and swords, I will have to say IMO W2 has an edge over 1095 as far as versatility and workability.

    Both are shallow hardening steels unlike CPM154, A2,and O1 steels you are familiar with which are deep hardening steel that harden uniformly more or less throughout the blade, The shallow hardening properties of w2 and 1095 allow for a full hardness to penetrate through from surface to surface on thin cross section but does not in thicker areas allowing for a more flexible and softer core. This characteristic of these two steels allows for a really hard cutting edge hard through and through but as you travel up the blade to the spine this softer core will start to become more prominent in the mass of the steel.

    How does this translate into user benefit, well by having a blade that is close to full hardness on the edge or desired hardness and a softer core and spine the blade can withstand more abuse, mainly in areas like batoning, prying and any other areas where a more brittle blade would be subpar and likely fail catastrophically before the 1095 or w2

    You can add to and build onto this characteristic by differently hardening, you can achieve different hardness in some deep hardening steels like O1 and A2,
    But lacking the shallow hardening nature of the W2 and 1095 it is not the same end product.

    By differentially hardening a shallow hardening steel you essentially expand on the already inherent characteristic qualities of the steel by adding a insulating layer to the outside of the blade usually in my case Satinite, which is a refractory clay.
    When you apply the clay to the spine of the blade and leaving the cutting edge bare you are allowing the steel to cool at different rates, the bare cutting edge on a W2 or 1095 blade will cool the fastest reaching full hardness when paired with a fast quench oil like parks50. The remaining coated section of the blade cools slower thus producing a hardening line that should follow the clay layout on the blade resulting in what is historically and technically referred to as a Hamon.

    The Hamon which is different than a temper line is a visual display of the metallurgical and molecular change that happens to the steel during heat treat. I only consider what I know a basic understanding of these properties. And I lack the knowledge on the technical terminology so I will explain in layman's terms. From my understanding is that when a steel is heated up the lattice structure that binds the the molecules together begin to relax and at a certain point they start to rearrange themselves and the steel goes through a sort of structural change on the molecular level. This is called the critical temp. At this point all the changes are happening fast in these two steels. There is a short window to where the molecules rearrange themselves and start to expand and become too large. So timing is everything you want the steel to soak long enough at critical temp to undergo the molecular change but not so long that the grain grows so large it causes a brittle blade. You can think of it like silt or sand in relation to building a sand castle. You want your grain structure to be like fine silt or sand these bind to one another in a tighter group whereas larger grains will have a harder time binding to one another. These changes happen in all steels and is the process in which hardening is achieved.

    What makes W2 and 1095 different is the are hyper eutectoid steels, and the hamon shows the different molecular structures that exist in the steel.

    A temper line is different in the sense that the steel does not actually go through the molecular changes that have occurred to give you a Hamon.
    A temper line is achieved by drawing the hardness out of the spine or by differently, or edge quenching deep hardening steels. Deep hardening and Non Hyper Eutectoid steels will not undergo the necessary molecular changes to achieve a true hamon and lack the characteristics needed to achieve Hamon therefore I know them a temper lines.

    I have a fairly good understanding of what constitutes a good chef's knife or kitchen knife and plan to continue in that direction, but I am afraid I will have to study up on the blades more specialized in processing your little 4 legged happy meals. I have a few books on butchering livestock and skinners I will have to dive into soon.

    I say yes to all of these, I will probably be tackle them in order as the time and the inspiration arises.
    Thank you for the compliments on the Nomad. You guys help it become a reality by giving me great feedback and pointing me in a general direction. So thank you as well. You are the second person to mention a larger version, I do believe that will be on my short list.

    Douglas, this is beyond helpful and a tremendous value to me to be able to interact with my fans and customers in a way that can be translated into actual
    tangible items. I enjoy bringing Ideas to life for you guys and part of why I continue to make knives is the satisfaction I obtain when I see someone cherish and enjoying something that I created with my hands.
    Last edited: Jun 13, 2017
    Panthera tigris likes this.
  12. adequacy

    adequacy Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 19, 2014
    Hey Chris and friends. Hope you are all doing very well.

    Chris - I was so happy to see that you created this thread. I know I only own one of your knives, but I plan on buying at least two more this year and I couldn't be more excited about it. It means a lot that you ask us for our input and it makes me KNOW that you are trying to create both to learn for yourself and to benefit your customers. I am incredibly grateful for your hard work and the community of knife scientists that this culture has fostered.

    As for what I'd like to see going forward, I'll follow the format and echo what a lot of others have said.

    What particular model and thickness?
    3/32 Steel thickness
    I'd love to try the trail hand, the mamushi, and especially the apache, all in 3/32 with slightly thicker handles.

    What kind of handle material like more micarta or G10, Carbon Fiber, Wood etc..

    I love all the materials you choose. I'd be happy to see more wood, since you have excellent taste.

    More Bolsters or Less?

    More bolsters please!

    What Colors, example what color Micarta or G10's?

    Others have said this, but I'm a huge sucker for big contrast in color schemes. I like all the oranges, lime greens, yellows, purples, etc. I really liked a few years ago when you were working with shadetree and had those cool bolster combos. I recognize you aren't utilizing shadetree as much anymore, and I tend to agree with the direction of the materials your using now for improved durability, however some nice liners that pop is always a special look.

    Steels? I am working with CPM154, W2, occasionally 1095, I currently am working on getting proficient in S35vn and Trying out 3v, 80crv2
    Which steel are you interested in?

    Your CPM 154 is superb and it's a great blend for everything I need.

    Where do you use you knife mostly?
    My warthog does everything. In fact, I might sell off most of my other knives. I use it for light food prep. Fire / wood prep. Hopefully some fishing in the near future. Also it's my EDC (opening packages, breaking down boxes). My job is an outdoor skills job so it sees everyday use. It's held up to everything, including batoning stuff way bigger than I should, notching, and light prying (nothing crazy, just like rubber lids and stuff on cans).

    What kind of new models would you like to see in the future?

    I'm really satisfied with your current model lineup. The only thing holding me back is $$$ to finance trying out what you already offer.

    Thanks again Chris for this opportunity to offer feedback.

    I don't think I can offer much you don't already know, but I'm always here for the think tank like brainstorming and collaborative effort that I know so many of your customers cherish.

    I didn't see a place for this, but I just remembered one other thing I'd be interested in seeing, and that's a full convex grind.

    Keep up the great work.
    Tekton likes this.
  13. Osprey Knife & Tool

    Osprey Knife & Tool Moderator Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jun 4, 2014

    Thank you for your reply! I can see why those two are your favorite, The Mamushi is one of my favorite patterns, I like both 3/32 and 1/8'' in that profile. 3/32 does have an edge as far as slicing but the 1/8" is where it is at for harder uses, like prying and batoning.

    I plan on doing a run of Tusks really soon so stay tuned for that!

    I am starting to see a concensus here with the synthetics wood ratio, I plan on switching back to mostly synthetics sandblast with a few wood and higher end materials/combination here and there.

    I like functional bolsters

    I like Blue too! I am not a fan of the layered G10's either but the layered carbon fiber is something else! I have to admit, I really am not a fan of lime green, unless it's under Jade, I will have to add more into my rotation. I have more glow combinations ideas and appreciate your as well.

    I like 3V as a steel so far is the sense of a user, I have one knife in 3v and I am pleased with the edge retention so far, I have only gotten so far as to machining the 3v pre heat treat, so I can't say as a knifemaker if I will like it or not, but so far so good and I am excited to be working with it!

    I can relate, no complaints here though, that's where most of my use is at even though I make knives all day. LOL

    I have been brainstorming the less forward rake idea on a few of my models. The laminated steel just was laid to the side until after Blade Show. I plan on getting back to those sometime in the next month or so. And I will continue to try out new areas and styles of knives.

    Thank you for your contribution Phillip. I look forward to making some of these Ideas a reality as well as others that were previously mentioned by the rest of you!
  14. Osprey Knife & Tool

    Osprey Knife & Tool Moderator Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jun 4, 2014

    Sounds interesting I will have to check it out thank you for the lead!
    NJBillK likes this.
  15. Osprey Knife & Tool

    Osprey Knife & Tool Moderator Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jun 4, 2014
    Thank you! I thought it was time, and value you guy's input. I am glad you are planning on expanding your collection. If you bought one and are planning or buying more than one again that's all I need to know to tell me how happy your are with it. And that makes me happy!

    Again thank you, I appreciate all the time you guys put into promoting my work, talking about the knives and just being a great group of people in general. I think it is an essential part of what I do the passing of information from you the customer and me the maker to make a better more enjoyable product. I enjoy creating for you guy's so as much as I do it for myself I also do it for you guys as well. I feel a great sense of gratitude for everyone helping me get to where I am today.


    I make the Trail Hand an Mamushi both exclusively in 3/32" The Apache is something I will attempt in the near future in 3/32'' it's definitely on the horizon

    Thank you, I hand pick every piece of wood and some pieces I hold on to for a considerable amount of time before it goes on a blade. I am always on the hunt for that piece of wood that has unique character.

    You are going against the crowd on this one, I will continue to make bolsters just not the majority of the knives.

    I was using the shade tree pretty heavy awhile back, I honestly got bored with it and wanted try other materials, I did find however as far as performance and durability I prefer Canvas Micarta and G10's over Shade Tree, Just a personal preference. I can achieve the same color scheme for the most part with a combinations of G10 and Micarta. I wouldn't say I will not continue to Shade Tree t, I will just on a limited basis. Since most of you want cost effective materials based on performance canvas micarta and G10's would be the way to go

    Thank you, I spent some time dialing in the heat treat on the CPM154, I am pleased to see it is translating well for the user.

    That is great to hear, it sounds like the Warthog is doing what it meant to do for you, and that makes me really happy!

    I appreciate as well the time you took to answer these questions so I can provide and better product and be better in tune with what the demand is for. I like bouncing ideas of of you guys and I think it helps with the creative process a bit. For the most part I feel I can tell what the trends are but sometimes it is better to ask, and I have always found even just starting a discussion can lead to cool new directions and Ideas, so it is well worth the effort for me.

    I have plans to make a few models in full convex, not really any current ones though, it won't be the same as Fiddleback, I will attempt true convex grinds with no secondary bevels
  16. adequacy

    adequacy Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 19, 2014
    Thanks for all the great replies Chris. I really appreciate it. One thing I forgot to mention in my reply to your thread was the following:

    I know it'd be a lot of work for you, but I was hoping for a small write up, maybe a paragraph or two, on each of your core models in your lineup. These write ups would include design intentions, such as typical types of usage ( bushcraft, Edc, kitchen, utility, fire prep, self defense, or all a description of all roles it is intended to fill). For instance, since I know the warthog well now, a description could be something like, an EDC blade and then mention where it specializes and if you care to elaborate on any design descriptions, such as the curvature, the blade shape, etc. This would be super helpful in deciding if a model is right for me as my next purchase. I know it may seem obvious to some based on just looking at the blade, but sometimes it's best to hear these things from the maker and what the makers intended use are.
  17. Osprey Knife & Tool

    Osprey Knife & Tool Moderator Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jun 4, 2014

    Thank you, I appreciate your feedback as well!

    I think that is a good Idea, I can get caught up in learning and making knives and these kinds of things sometimes are not in the front of my mind. I thank you for bringing it back to the front. I will start working on this. It will take me awhile as I have a few other lengthy write ups and then plan to reorganize certain parts of my forum and this fits nicely into the latter part of the agenda.
    adequacy likes this.
  18. Comprehensivist

    Comprehensivist Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Aug 23, 2008
    Thanks for starting this thread Chris. You have received a number of well thought out responses so far from an experienced group of folks. I agree with most of the consensus opinions so far.

    Here are my general answers to your questions followed by some specific comments actual purchases to add to the mix:

    Models and thickness?

    I like the models that incorporate some food prep / kitchen utility features in addition to outdoor uses. “K” Raptors, “K” Apaches and the Nomad all fit this category for me. I prefer thinner steels these days for most day-to-day uses. The fact that you work in 3/32” CPM 154 and taper the tangs has been a big reason that I am drawn to your knives. The 1/16” CPM 154 on the Nomad has been a very pleasant surprise to me too. I think that these dual utility models with base synthetic handles will be popular sellers for you.

    What kind of handle material like more micarta or G10, Carbon Fiber, Wood etc.?

    My preference runs about 95% to synthetic handles these days. Durability, ease of maintenance, and reasonable cost, are the factors that I appreciate about micarta and G10. Your bead-blasted finish on these materials is excellent for being grippy even when wet. Your finishing on carbon fiber handles is the best I have experienced - smooth and supple feeling rather than polished and slippery.

    On the few cases where I go with wood, I am attracted to nicely figured Koa or other browns. I am not into dyed woods at all.

    More Bolsters or Less?

    With a few notable exceptions, I prefer no bolsters. Bolsters are one of the options where I feel that up-charge cost is better applied on premium material or other features of the knife.

    The bolstered handle configurations I like the best have no pinstripes. I like the clean look of matching synthetic 1/8” liners and bolsters without pinstripes.

    My favorite handle combo I have seen you do is this “K” Apache with Koa sandwiched between two Lightning Strike carbon fiber bolsters. Absolutely beautiful! (Not my knife by the way.)



    What Colors, example what color Micarta or G10's?

    Most of my OK&T knives have some kind of black handle. That is more due to circumstance than a dedicated theme on my part. While I like black, I hope to branch out more on future purchases with Slate Blue, Charcoal Gray, or Jade G10’s, or OD Green, Maroon, or Barbwire Brown micartas.

    I will still buy more of the various carbon fiber options. This material has many positives going for it in beauty, durability, and light weight.

    Let’s get back to pinstripes for a minute. From my experience and what I hear about from others, pinstripe color is a very polarizing topic for many buyers. I can’t tell you how many knives I have passed on buying over the years just because the pinstripe color was wrong on an otherwise desirable knife. We all have colors we love and others we can’t stand. I like the simplicity of 1/8” thick black or natural liners with no pinstripe or even “commando” handles with no liners or pinstripes. This would be simpler to manufacture and more cost effective for the buyer.

    I want to 2nd Phillip’s (M4Super90) comment about reducing the forward rake on the handle pommels to provide more grip flexibility on the bottom of the handle. I also find rounded pommels more comfortable and adaptable than the pointed flat designs.

    Steels? I am working with CPM154, W2, occasionally 1095, I currently am working on getting proficient in S35vn and Trying out 3v, 80crv2. Which steel are you interested in?

    I have been very happy with the CPM 154 material you use on most knives. I have knives in 3V and S35VN by other makers that I have been very happy with. I would like to try an OK&T in 3V or S35VN if you can get the heat treat protocols dialed in to take full advantage of the benefits these materials offer. I have limited experience so far with 80CRV2 and none with W2 or 1095, so I will reserve commenting on those materials.

    Where do you use you knife mostly?

    Food prep kitchen use daily. Utility use around the house/ garage/office most days. Outdoor hiking/camping/woodworking a couple days a month.

    What kind of new models would you like to see in the future?

    A dedicated 6” to 7” kitchen knife with a synthetic handle would be fun. I hope to see the larger “King Raptor” we talked about make it across the finish line too.

    My thought process behind recent purchases:

    I thought it might be insightful to you to break down the reasoning for my recent purchases at Blade. Here are the three I bought:

    (Top to Bottom: “K” Apache, “K2” Raptor, Tusk)


    Starting with the “K” Apache, I’ll admit that my interest in this model was influenced by Jerry’s (Warrior108) photos and positive comments about his knife. When I actually held one in hand, I could see why. It strikes me as one of the great all-around models in the OK&T line-up. The tall guardless blade on the “K” version yields a perfectly neutral balance point right on first set of pins. The added finger clearance on this version is enough to make me really want to use this knife regularly for food prep tasks. There were four of this model available - all with premium handle options. I decided to go with the marbled carbon fiber handle with contrasting white pins & pinstripes. This is a handsome combo that was worth the up-charge to me even if one were available in less expensive basic micarta. I am willing to spring for premium handle options on certain models that are core favorites of mine. The “K” Apache is one of those models to me. I recommend this model to anyone looking for a great all around 4” knife.

    The “K2” Raptor is the model that I was most interested in checking out at the show. Anyone who has followed my posts on this forum knows that the Raptor is my favorite model. The first “K” version increased the upward tilt of the handle to provide better finger clearance for kitchen work. It also incorporated a rounded butt. Following a very interesting series of posts by my friend Phillip (M4Super90) in the “OK&T Comparison Photos” thread, Chris responded with the revised “K2” version that further increased the upward tilt of the handle for better finger clearance. In all honesty, I was initially concerned that maybe this was too much of a good thing and that it would feel awkward in hand. My doubts were completely erased when I first picked up the K2. It feels great in hand and the increased finger clearance truly is just right. There were only two of these with premium carbon fiber to choose from. I chose the one with layered black & white weave complimented by white pins & liners. It looks great in daylight and the white layers glow in the dark, which is very cool. Similar to my comment on the “K” Apache, I would have chosen this one even if less expensive synthetic handle options were available because this version of the Raptor is the best yet. I will write more detailed comments about it in another thread, but let me say here that this is the best OK&T I have owned (and that is saying something among superlatives!)
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2017
  19. Comprehensivist

    Comprehensivist Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Aug 23, 2008
    The Tusk was my last purchase of the three. Before deciding on the Tusk, I gave a serious look at the EDU based on Danny’s (FeralGentleman) strong recommendation for that model. The EDU felt way better in hand than I expected, but something drew me more to the curves of the Tusk. There were about five to choose from between Chris’ table and one of the dealers. I was tempted by a beautiful bolstered one in premium handle materials before deciding to forego the upcharge and go with a simple black G10 with a large white pin and matching white pinstripe. I chose the more basic handle option on this one because I foresee using it in more of a general utility role.


    All three of these knives share some common characteristics. They are all tapered CPM 154 (3/32” on the Tusk & “K2” Raptor and 1/8” on the “K” Apache.) All share amazing hammer-texturing on the flats. The other subtle feature I really appreciate is the use of black carbon fiber lanyard tubes that blend in nicely with the handles so as not to be a focal distraction to the overall beauty of the knives.

    Where I started and what I am looking for going forward...

    Looking back to where it all started for me, I purchased my first OK&T knife from you two years ago. It was an original profile Raptor with basic black G10 scales & liners and a red pinstripe. It was a cost effective purchase that introduced me to your work. Since you were new to me at the time, I didn’t want to “risk” buying a costlier fancy handled knife and possibly be disappointed.

    I became very impressed with the Raptor each time I used it. Your CPM 154 holds an edge for quite a long time and light stropping keeps it screaming sharp. Combined with the G10 handle, maintenance is a breeze by just rinsing in water and drying.



    Even though this Raptor lacks many of the refinements of your current work, it remains my favorite user despite its basic blue collar configuration. The beauty of this knife to me is how it performs.

    The reason I revisit this story is to make the point that I think you will attract more new buyers with base price synthetic handle configurations. I think the modest upcharge for CPM 154 is worth the investment. Once new buyers experience your craftsmanship first hand, I suspect they will become loyal repeat customers.

    When I think of OK&T, certain core features always come to mind as signatures of your work. Thinner stainless steel, tapered tangs, beautifully hammer-textured flats, superlative handle shaping & finishing, and screaming sharp edges out of the box are the common traits that apply to all of my OK&T knives. Some of my knives have basic handles and others something fancier. That trend will continue for me in the future. I think the broader market will respond better (i.e. “buy more”) of your knives that retain the core features I outlined above with a more economical basic synthetic handle that fits more budgets.

    Thanks for making such awesome knives Chris!


    P.S. - “K2” Raptors Rock!!! :cool:
    Last edited: Jun 20, 2017
    Osprey Knife & Tool likes this.
  20. Osprey Knife & Tool

    Osprey Knife & Tool Moderator Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jun 4, 2014
    [​IMG]Hosted on Fotki

    [​IMG]Hosted on Fotki

    I found this, had to dig for awhile this is the last Blade I forged it is W2 steel , but I never finished it.
    gives you guys and Idea of where my skill level was at, not too shabby and shouldn't be long for me to get back in the groove. I need to buy some hammers and tongs, So plan to see some forged in progress late summer early fall.

Share This Page