Greg Medford of Medford Knife and Tool joins Bob “The Knife Junkie” DeMarco on Episode #46 of The Knife Junkie Podcast.
Hear how Greg decided to enter the knife business as well as a story about a Medford Knife, a Mormon and a Strip Club, plus lots of other great knife conversation, including the business of making knives and the yuppie market, as well as fidgeting with knives!A Greg Medford Knife, a Mormon and a Strip Club ... you gotta tune in for Episode #46 of The Knife Junkie Podcast to hear that and more! www.theknifejunkie.com/45 Click To Tweet
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Greg Medford of Medford Knife and Tool The Knife Junkie Podcast (Episode #46)
00:00:00 - 00:05:09
I've kind of mashed together this company that's built the principal core of it is hand making handwriting hand fabrication and that's all complemented with a with a layer of technology and CNC and that's the opposite of what most companies are so. It's a unique place in in the market or are the way we make welcome to the knife Junkie podcast. You're weekly of knife news. It's an information about knives and knife collecting. Here's your hosts. Jim Person involved the knife junkie DEMARCO hello. Oh night junkies welcome to episode number forty six of the knife Chunky podcast. I'm Jim Person and I'm Bob the knife Junkie DEMARCO. Welcome to the show. Welcome to another episode where we're GonNa talk about knife stuff and hear an interview with the custom knife maker will get to that in just a second but new knife for you this week Bob or or not were sort of a new knife. Well yeah sort of a new knife this week recently my brother was here visiting and I had gotten the Bark River knives made blackjack version of the Randall model one okay. It's a beautiful sort of traditional world war two era fighting knife and they come with different different shaped handles. This was a a purchase that was This was a knife centre purchase. They sent me an email. Hey look at these knives we found him in the warehouse and we think you know we think think they're the last ones and so wanting one badly wanting a randall badly but definitely not really into buying one right now I jumped on the blackjack with the with a handle that that widens out towards the end and that that'll come up in a second and it's beautiful ivory my car to handles and it's great great blade so it shows up and I'm inspecting it and everything is perfect and then I slide in this gorgeous sheath and then I can't get the retention strap around on the thick but of this handle and ended occurs to me that they they ship this all with the same sheath but with different handles because the other version of this has the stacked leather handles in commando grip. It's what they call it so it swells and then towards the but it comes back in like a waistline so the sheaths are built to accommodate that thin waistline near the butt of the knife so it was really bummed because I love the knife and I love the sheath it just they just don't go together. Well Lo and behold. My brother came to visit and he does a lot of leather stuff. I told him to bring his little case of his travel case of leather tools as what we could do and we were able to move we he was able to move the retention strap from the top of the sheath down towards the the cross guard where it fits and it doesn't have an opportunity to slide out so so just a a word of warning if you're if you're GonNa get this CPM Three v version blackjack Randall model one make sure sure that you're ready to move that sheath dumb move that retention strap down. I love the way you said we and then quickly correct to say he yes well while I was. Perhaps the brains of the operation a whole. That's that's not true. I just get your brother on the body. Yes and we'll talk about that. I said fix please. He's fix all right. I'll fix you dinner or something like that exactly. I'll let you sleep in my house so that was not a new knife but a modification if you will so something there mature also getting cash custom a little bit more to the the E. X. Tijuana the axe or something like that yeah. It's a Tomahawk. I think the I think a Tomahawk is technically like a fighting acts but not meant to split. Would this sucker is so this is the hogue made Alicia wits designed signed e x Dash t o one. It's a it's their Tomahawk and You should look it up. If you're listening you're interested in what I'm talking about. Just check it out. Look it up on hogue dot com and check this out. It is kind of like half knife half Tomahawk half acts. It's got this beautiful sort of four inch which cutting blade I mean the blade is sharp. It's like paper cutting hair shaving sharp and then it's got a handle that feels almost like a sword handle down at the end. It has a a bird's beak that really keeps your your hand in and it's light and thin and if you practice with a knife or a stick you know this this. Tomahawk fits right in with whatever you're doing and you can trap with it and you can thrust with it and you can slash with it. It's marine cool. I'm going to do a video sometime this week on unit for the collection selection but I'll do a little demo of how can be used to okay well. You can look for that. video on the knife chunk is youtube channel at the knife dunk knife junkie dot. com MM slash youtube and speaking of Elisha wits Allen was a guest on last week's podcast episode number forty five haven't caught that yet go to the knife junkie dot com slash slash four five and you can hear that interview and here a little bit more about about that as well another great knife maker coming up on the show today.
00:05:10 - 00:10:13
Who Do we have coming up that you'RE GONNA be talking to today. I'm speaking with Greg Medford of Medford knives some he needs little introduction. He's got a lot of videos on youtube and and his knives are just well at this point. They're ubiquitous in the knife world. Everyone knows them. Not everyone has them. Unfortunately I wish I had one. Don't don't have one yet but I see a Pretoria in in my future I got so Greg's a very interesting guys got incredible background of not only service to the the country in the Marine Corps but also just very interesting hobbies like fighter jet flying and and other things he'll he'll talk hobby yeah very very interesting guy a and and just sort of a force you know he's he's got a real He's got a real a momentum behind him and the way he took on making knives. You'll you'll see. He was very very straightforward very interesting. seems like a great guy. Yeah Greg Medford knives all right. We'll hear from Greg in just a minute but I do want to remind you you that the knife Junkie podcast is brought to you by quickbooks self-employed. It's your year round tanks solution. It's definitely a must have for contractors freelancers anybody anybody who is self-employed and if you WANNA save money at the same time go to the nine chunky dot com slash q be thirty nine junkies will get a free thirty day. Trial of quickbooks books self-employed again thirty days for free just for listening go to the knife chunky dot com slash. QB Thirty you're listening to the knife junkie podcast call the knife Junkie at seven two four four six six four four eight seven with your questions or comments all right welcome back. We're here with Gregg Medford of Medford for Knives Greg. Thanks for coming on the knife Junkie podcast. Thanks for having me. It is a pleasure to pleasure so you're known for your handmade very very sturdy very stout folders and and custom-made fixed blades. Tell me how you got into knives and you have a military background but you're also flyer right. Yeah I basically you know at the time I had a I had several schools over the year over the years and when the economy economy crashed in Oh eight in phoenix particularly badly then I was kind of at the spot rows of living like a Hawaiian. I kind of worked a few hours a day. I am also got to chill out with my wife and hang on with kids and I was happy just kind of chugging along like that didn't have any big aspirations and then the economy tanked in Phoenix particularly badly and I you know at that point. Everyone's like hundred. Ad Martial Arts so all of a sudden I went for making one hundred grand a year. You know kind of chill little life life to make no money at all and I still had all my bills and I still had the business all of that generating any revenue running successful school for almost twenty years what we teach him. I taught tempo she Jitsu and multiple multiple a bunch of different styles but when that all started slowdown on and I mean really slow down. I knew it was a good time for me to get out. I was kind of feel like I've been doing martial arts seventies and it was it was it was time to transition Asian so I've been flying for oh. I don't know I've been flying since I got out of the Marine Corps so about ninety one at been flying aircraft and I did fly in airshows as a stunt a pilot night head for storage a bunch of airplanes built engines built old former military aircraft in in so I I had all this. I Eh background of hand making you know. My grandfather was a leather worker in a tin worker so I've been around leather work. I did my first whether relief shaping patterning you know maybe when I was six so I've always just been around handcrafted stuff might dad was a master tre plumber so I you know from an early age. I learned out hustling work with my dad and you know it sounds kind of weird but learn how to dig a ditch. Emmanuel's had to dig a ditch rush. That's kind of unstoppable human you know so. I learned at work hard with my dad worked smart. No plumbing was very technical trade and then got into metallurgy as I was working on aircraft. I was doing a lot of work on Russian aircraft which have a mix of steel aluminum and titanium. You know most Western aircraft don't have that mix of metals that all snow steel anywhere everything's aluminum on exotic alloy the Russians alike mixing you steal gotten to build and rebuild aircraft and and do a lot of reverse engineering and so did the movie inglorious bastards comes on and I'm a huge Quintin Fan. I'm big film Keno File and I watched the film and I see a Brad Pitt. He's got that nice and film here and so I said I want one of those so I started looking around for Bowie knife and Lo and behold it doesn't exist custom nine so I looked to have one made in but to my students pulled together bought me really nice custom boo knife.
00:10:13 - 00:15:04
That's cool yeah. It was okay I can make one of these and so I thought about getting in the night business and ah I got the karate schools are waning economies crashing might friends doing well all manufacturing and I said Taliban manufacturing and I put this huge spreadsheet and raided everything on how much I thought people care for American made and kind of an intersection of something I wouldn't mind doing every day something comfortable familiar with cutlery metallurgy manufacturing and then all just kind of crush together and that was a mash up that came out was knife making I drew twenty nights. One day invited over a bunch of friends for beer laid out drowns on the pool table said guys tell me what you thinking. You know everyone pick something different. I said Okay I got a knack for this amount to make knives. I read through the building. The next day I bought a grinder the day off to that. I flew to Missouri a week later to accept the grinder. Learn how to use it. I spent two days learning how to grind with a guy named Tom. Guinness and a just kind of happened pretty organically. The first year was me scientist. I was teaching Crotty and flying airplanes and my white financial life was winding down and I was just figuring out how to pay rent and make knives and then at the end by the end of the first year. I've made hundreds of knives. I'd sold them all. I paid my rent. My mortgage paid off all equipment house counting on this. This is more than just greg retreating from the world. I could actually built a company. I spent a couple months with a good friend of a friend of mine. She helped me write a business plan. Dan and that's out took off man. I made a plan on. I followed the plan but flexible about denting along the way and here I am so so so two thousand eight you started. What's your what's your manufacturing like now. What are your capabilities over at Medford knives well. I actually started in two thousand ten in craft in two thousand eight. It took a couple years for all the planets to align so speak so we got about thirty people on staff. We can make about a thousand units a month's anywhere between nine hundred twelve hundred. I've got about Twani Twenty three people twenty two twenty three the people in production. We're kind of really interesting mix. I look at manufacturing from what I looked at a lot of possibilities and you know I kind of figured. I was bright enough to pull this off. Marie educated guided pick stuff up quickly but I didn't understand manufacturing. I didn't understand how sophisticated the kid was to do well but I've arrived at this place. I'm very but I'm kind of Leery of technology because does technology can make you relevant so quickly. If that's your thing I've kind of mashed together this company that's built the principal core of it it's hand making handwriting hand fabrication and that's all complemented with a with a layer of technology and CNC and that's what's the opposite of what most cut night companies are so it's a unique place in the market or are we make unpack that for a second let listeners know how that model is different or the opposite from what's primary so primarily what's out there is production grinding so you stamp stamp out cut out thousands and thousands of a thing and then you scrap a couple fifty one hundred of them setting up a production grinder and then you grind and ten thousand of them all exactly the same way in the grinding is not very artful. It's kind of production grinding trying to keep the cost down. So what's happened is the knife industry it was hijacked by the race to the bottom that the Chinese came in at and everyone knows how that goes everyone races as cheap as they can. Dan they end up being the high end of cheap and then and then and then you have all of the Chinese junk that showed up would stolen technology concepts designs lines in approach and now as enough makers have taken the chicken shit approach of making it in Asia 'cause they can't figure out how to make it. They spoiled up the Asians into making quite good nice. Tonight is being made in Asia. You've got the manufacturing core of nine have been routed here in America. Arca and whoever's left is making mostly mid would call mid tier load mid tier production style nights. They're trying going to make them the way they make them the same way the Chinese do so.
00:15:04 - 00:20:06
We don't do anything like that. We basically water jet out. We you vino grind by I by hand in the measuring small batches of nights on Grindr we see and see the handle parts and the blades are made by hand the ground by hand no jigs no fixtures freehand ground by they have a masterful full level of symmetry and a lovely organic uniqueness to everyone late person puts the next to each other and they can't see the difference and then you start measuring with a micrometer and they're all subtly different right and then every part his goes into a hand assembly area where it's assembled would sacrificial new parts. Everything's put together with diamond lapping compound and then those surfaces are all lapped in move until we begin to make to each other perfectly and now you have this metal on metal large surface area mating parts with that gets you is it gets you at night that translates between the edge in the handle very much like a fixed blade in a very old fashioned kind of organic way. I could get into the physics of Energy Transference for instance blades in mechanic's tools and all of that. It's a whole different question but you know we have. This head made component which gives us this beautiful style L. A. Grind which gives a uniqueness every blade and the blade is the corner. You know it's the it's the pillar it's the engine of life right and the handle people don't like. Oh my handle is artfully this that the other will the arts art nine guys do but ninth users you know they're really focused on deplete the via handle fit night seeing my hand and is the plate execute well and then subtly. There's this quite communication that goes on between the razor edge of a blade and the feedback that goes into the handle. It's an agent communication and the less Mush squish wiggle or play. There is in that mechanism better to communications listening to you speak. Obviously he's like this is something you've spent a lot of time working on and and flow in with what was it like handing over control over making these knives lives to other people as you began to grow What did you put the knife makers through to to make sure they're making a medford knife or you know the thing. That's crazy yeah about it. Is that you know people. Ask Milk Time. What's the secret to your success and in a lot of times these interviews like this. They're really trying to get at you know what's this guy's got a little American dream going on. What's the secret and the secret is? It's a combination of a lot of things but I think I think I have a very utilitarian style design of of design those two how it makes stuff. I think that speaks to users but because I'm a tool user. I have this requirement of how a nice should feel that I like and so I built a whole company around this feel and this quality of feel and this quality feedback and this usability of tool and this practicality so it has this kind of craftsman eight those that we saw from the sticky family during the craftsman period furniture making it's got this very utilitarian beauty beauty and simplicity. I tell people all the time you know instead of putting bearings on the inside of my heavy use knives for ease of assembly and manufacturing. We put so what I see go on. I can't compare to these guys. McKie's beautiful knives on the outside bearings on the inside and you can usually I can break. Those knives guys guys to say Oh metrics. He's talking about his ass. He can bring in mostly break those nights and I've done it would really expensive nines on purpose on accident. I broken a lot of nines on purpose just just testing stuff because I'm like query minds. WanNa know you know what I mean but the way I make my knives on the inside is time consuming in its artful. Indi- it's craftsman so instead of dressing up the outside of a knife in glossing it up I really put the time to the inside of the knife that performance of the knife and that's a different thing so the outside got utilitarian this to it that maybe racecar does it would race car up racecars or pretty from like a hundred feet away and you get close and they're not pretty like we're used to from a from a Porsche. They're they're they're up because they're working tools inside their are beautiful so I kind of approach outside. They have a definitely a refined ruggedness for sure yeah yeah yeah you keep mentioning tools and and obviously these are hardcore tools but you're one of the few makers out there and I really appreciate that. WHO's unabashed about the role of knives as a weapon. I remember seeing when you first came into to my view years ago.
00:20:06 - 00:25:12
I remember seeing a youtube video where you said I want. I want all of my knives knives to be able to punch through a helmet. I thought that's cool as a cool criteria because you don't hear too. Many people people mince words when it comes to knives. You don't seem to do that. You know I just feel like human beings. I'm not the first guy say this but human beings see the world through a lot filters fundamentally okay but you could break it down into two camps at people there are people who view the world and they're their their conception of filtering the world in judging the world ruling the world in their society is from the column of safety and then there's another column column of people especially here in America with their way they judge the world view the world is through the eyes of liberty and I am from in this campaign. It is fewer people in it. The Liberty Camp for US safety is not a given we expect it from. No one were more rugged. individualists are my argument is we are absolutely not the lemmings of America and I think we are more American that that people don't like it. I am more American. I earned it and I m than many of my countrymen who have not earned it because I'm sorry expecting safety is not earning. That's entitlement so I view the world different way. I don't expect safety. I expect to rely on myself. You know if you expect the police to protect you from someone's for instance burgling your home. You're lemming and your family will be taken advantage of if view expect police reacted there. They're not stopping crime for the most part and I don't hold them you know I don't expect that to them so I have this perspective in my entire tire worldview so the way I think about a knife is I'm not running around with a first aid kit vehicle already for Armageddon within go Vaga Zombie all be kit and all this bullshit. I don't have any of that. I know I have just enough guns to take whatever I need. If Armageddon actually happened I had an it. He guy to say to me lovely guy helping me out today said Hey. There's two perspectives you can have your server in the building or it can have it out in the cloud and I said well. I think I'd rather other. Have you know some cloud service their way more secure than me with my little cower down at me and he said well you know. Shit really hits the fan you don't have your information enlisted under serving rebuilding and I said Shit really hits the fan and servers art working. I'm going to be doing business with a gun. So what do I care about my server. You know what I mean so I just had this different mentality. I mostly follow the rules bendable little bit here and there I I pay my taxes. I'm you know part of the social fabric but I think about knives is a first response tool to get what you need done all the time. I don't think about it. It's like a weapon like Oh. If I needed for a knife fight you know bullshit I think about it as cutting seatbelts breaking glass inhabited if you need it you know sometimes just being a little more confident people undervalue confidence intellectually. viscerally women love confidence because it makes them feel secure in the presence of confidence in business confidence huge in board room. You know I walk into a border and I usually I'm the fucking boss in the boardroom. Confident I note of doing. I'm my own destiny. At everybody. Around is mostly working for somebody. I ended up half the time dislike saying okay well like here's what we're going to do and I kind of take charge chart in my point is I've got this car self reliance streak in me that I can't get around and and and having a knife it's well. I think it's a talisman of confidence and self reliance and it's more important than anything. I've made seventy thousand nine. I think two of them have seatbelts are four of them. Maybe I had one border. Patrol guy shot in a in a drug interdiction thing on the border with Canada and was shot in a knife of mine. The bullet hit the ninth and splattered in news. Face didn't kill him so cool. Yeah super like for that kind of stuff but you know like that's happened. Maybe maybe I fifteen really unique knife stories which is less than one tenth of one percent. It's almost nothing so. The truth is not are opening boxes and letters and making guy so good about themselves and a tiny bit more confident. I don't know I don't I don't want a bit later later. Demean it but I'd like to call like see you know yeah that that seems pretty apt there there are lots of things that give people that feeling are there other. They're kind of things that you are interested in manufacturing along those lines that you know would kind of bring out that spirit well for sure so so let me just talk about the big three for dates okay.
00:25:12 - 00:30:04
The Big Three for dudes is watches suits and ties. Maybe shoes maybe briefcase. This may be Penn you know like in the Business World Big Boys Business Card pens suit tie those all those little things kind of add up because you're in these high high stakes big numbers world. Let's Say New York finance the Weapon of New York. Finance is what kind of mount blunt penned yet poking out of your pocket. The tire you wearing those are silly. They're only silly. If you're from Phoenix desert in New York finance those are the weapons in the trait right every bit as much. She's a a navy seal wherein the right tackle body armor and coming in with an MP five or whatever carrion so there are a couple more things than on really into making an as my company is maturing and getting some bandwidth. Ns buildings come up for sale on Kinda snagging property to put put my next thing into. I've got three other significant companies that I'm trying to Spool up but I'm in the process of right now in development on them right now those are gonNA. Watch and I'll I'll be kind of at arm's distance executive in those companies but they're my brain children you know so. I think you have an entrepreneurial spirit and you could be making any kind of widget and you would probably be doing well. It sounds like it sounds like you know. Business is definitely definitely something that you have a grasp on. Do you think that knife making or or let me ask you this way. At what level do you think knife making is good business if you're not in entrepreneur okay let's end of a long day. Tell I'm you asked me that question. That was obliquely stated. I I guess I just mean you know is is is knife making a good business to go into. You happen to sound like you have to have your business stuff together but for just someone who's talented it making knives. Is that a good business no it's. It's not a great business. it's too small an industry. It's a contracting market there isn't it's doesn't have a lot of growth potential in my opinion. on the main market has been spoken for and it's been cheapen down. It's not core lifestyle product. It's got a lot of things going against it. What I like about it is it's old technology. It's not going to be supplanted very easily and if it's a billion dollar industry which it's approximately a billion in the US. It's a slow decline all. I've got to do grow with a net billion dollars and I can. I can do well but as you know what I recommend my son get into it. Not Necessarily you asked me a question a few minutes. GonNa it didn't answer it. I really comfortable having other people dive into the making of my product as I designed it and learn how to do it. I didn't have a love for grinding knives or a love for smelling titanium on my skin. Those were all a means to an end. I wanted to make cool product and I really loved in my hand. That was what I wanted I do. I didn't want to be a grinder ground a lot of knives and I only stopped sharpening knives. I mean here. I am ten years. I stopped serving is a month ago and occasionally. If the right to people are sick you could walk in the factory and see me out sharp knives because it's one of the high skill set tonight at relations man. I actually love seeing people grow and I love seeing people rise up and I love training guys and I love seeing people get their craftsmanship wings and seeing you know men and women and fall into a craft where they become an expert and so that to me is really exciting end result is they make knives now in my shop that are better than I make them uh-huh and and guys who say oh. I make knives better than you know bullshit. You can't grind twenty nine at the beginning of each month and be as good as the guy who grant twenty-ninth yesterday impossible so I smashed together Henry Ford's production model and Steve Jobs in this model high-tech an old tech in into this older will heart good business of knife making and that's kind of how how I roll so during during the period of time where you were earning your bones and grinding knife after knife after knife kind of as a means to an end did you at any point fall in love love with the process from an artistic perspective did were you surprised by an attachment or anything that to the process you know. I've heard there from psychologists. There are two kinds of people in the world folks who carry their baggage folks who leave baggage behind and move on in life and I believe baggage behind guy as soon as I'm done with something done with it move right onto the next thing so for me.
00:30:04 - 00:35:01
I was never a knife collector on to user so for me. I like making tools rules and each time I finished when I go to the next one better and then move on you have to have ambition intelligence heard working spirit a huge stomach for risk and tolerance of risk and a little bit arrogance to make disolve work. You know I always ask people. What's your ambition. Do you have a risk tolerance. How are you willing to work. How Comfortable Are Oh. You are with think he can do better than somebody else. People are all like humble about it. I go. Hey listen yet the wrong attitude. It's self-employment think's gobble you up. You've got to feel like you can kind of do better than everybody. It's like fighter pilots. You never ask a fighter pilot. If you've talked to a fighter pilot may say anything in a the the room or why the hell would you do it. You feel like outlet. I'm good enough that means half the guys run probably kill me so fucking mediocre fighter by w things like that so it's the same thing with this ought to eat for me anyway. Mike look if I'm GONNA do this. I don't want to bench may does bench made already doesn't do well. They want to do something different. I want to make what I like and all they cared about was cool like is this cool. Do I digging. I it sounds it's kind of weird like maybe it's a low bar. This few cool in my hand. Does it look cool. My pocket doesn't work in a cool way is cool or is Dorky like I kind of keep it simple. Well obviously built into your cool is functionality. You're not you're not just looking at it. Is it all Ninja cool. You're obviously part of your. You're cool is utilitarian. Yeah Yeah Yeah like if it's cool. Booking doesn't work. It's a poser and that's phony so I see in the end up telling you man. I'll tell you this. Here's my critique on the night business right now. There are a ton of young guys designing knives in solid works. Were really good. Drawing digitally who night companies are putting their stuff into production that haven't actually felt it in their hands and I picked these up. They're sophisticated. They have wonderful parts in wonderful machine great work done to them and they're awful knots and I just shake my head. I you hello if this company and hired me to come in. I could actually make their company cool because right now they make easy. Rtd these really intricate looking knife with all. This stuff doesn't always work and they're Nice end and I just go why. Why would you make these nuts. It's cracks me up yeah. It's it's when you think of the idea of art knife. It's it's kind of funny if you're looking at the knife is a tool. It's like what what an art hammer or as God got. I'm GonNa make an art gun yeah so I remember also wants enemy to dig up old stuff but you mentioned once that you weren't fond of flippers and now you've got got some pretty damn sweet flippers. What's up with that. Will you know there's times in our lives would wear acting younger and and there's times in our lives warmer acting older and one of the traits of the old is you become intransigent inflexible noncompliant a you think forward and I've had periods where maybe somebody's made a false claim against me and I've had defend myself in court bad mood for a couple of months. I I'm usually pretty upbeat guy because you gotta be beater being self employed. Doodo grind your soul up in so what happened with the flipper. Thing was the flipper concept in and of itself. I'm fine with now. I talked combat. It's for years not pretty good in the fight night. Barehanded couple of is on pretty competent and capable and you know. I love doing that kind of stuff. Would I never never found to be important was having your knife out really really fast. I've found that most people in a hurry getting their knife out when I trained beds for years the number one thing they did is dropped author knife or cut themselves with it so I was a big fan when I talk combat as if getting your knife out slowly mindfully and seeing a fight happened before you need your knife doc hurry it's too late plus there was never a knife fight at the OK corral this isn't it be quick drawing night world and interesting so after started carrying knives more. I kind of fell in love with flippers and I like him and I think they're really cool. Here's what I like about them. No Oh extra mechanism required to have night almost employs automatic. No nothing did open one handed scrape. Here's why why it got a little negative on them.
00:35:02 - 00:40:02
The the narrow group of I call I don't speak very nicely about the but the guys were really nuanced announced collectors of flippers kind of any clinic pull my flipper up carrying my pocket. Oh actually it's not a flipper. It's an auto so they WANNA see them. They WANNA hang the blatancy pendulum naturally like it's zero resistance blame. That's the that's the dumbest guy that's that's the dumb thing you could ask the night. That's the dumbest thing ever. It's like I want to hammer on my gun. That just goes off released at least the dumbest thing ever but the guys are very very finicky especially the L. A. New York collector crowd that takes their night than slides lights into a foam pocket nuts. There sits a full pocket in in a in a carrying case yeah so I I was really very very very pejorative. Negative feeling connotation round flippers because of those guys getting on with my new handmade knives that required some break in the really critical of me and I was a little you know I was coming to terms with social media. I was coming to terms with the fact that half of the Internet is a giant speaker and and I was in on it. Just wasn't real smooth with it at the time so you mentioned you. The idea of opening up a knife mindfully mindfully is more important and I think that that's still translates and is still important. There's there is something to be said for fidgeting. If you'RE GONNA fidget fidget with a knife I mean that's that's what I say but just Taurean and and the way it's that beautiful awful sort of shallow fuller on the side that you used to open the blade than you know until until one gets used to that it is a more deliberate Britt action. It is less fidgety and that seems to be a direct illustration of what you're talking about. Well this so so this. This interviews get a cough. I'm going to be pretty rod straightforward. I don't filter myself to come off well. Shit fidgeting to me is a sign of weakness so oh I'm not into fidgeting. I'm not into people making excuses before they do something like Oh. I've done this forever so forgive me if I suck. I'm like hey man shut up. I'm like Whoa hold on a second. Do you know your dad is. I like to pause guys. Well wait a minute so people chewing on fingernails or fidgeting around its weakness so I am no room for that and I don't accommodate. I think everything amid does should be purposeful missile so I just don't have time for `Voliti. I was just sitting down reading Ron Chernow's book on Washington and he's one of my favorite heroes and Areso person a real hero worthy of every bit of it on reading about his childhood right now and his upbringing his thoughts on fidgeting and they're very similar mine aw and I think it's fascinating but yet just not a fidget her so I like stuff to be intentional like people to be purposeful. When I was teaching guys how to fly. I never wanted I did I was always nervous about guys when started training them who put their hands up before thinking onto an instrument panel and I was hanging all that second. Stop stop touching stuff. You know look not what you want emporium purposefully like if I say hey man you're you don't have your your altimeters not set to the correct burridge pressure and they start putting their hands up on check. What are you doing since one button. You need to touch right now. You see where it is. Don't put your hand on. Don't touch anything else you zero point. Don't don't mess with Zo. Stakes are high stakes a little bit higher there but I had this this economy of motion and I talked this combat's when I was teaching fighting and self defense as well. Don't do anything extra. Stop Quieter. Everything down very little is actually required. If you do the right thing I I just wanted to get into one other thing and that's politics and the knife world. It seems like a pretty decent decent decent community so what are your impressions of the knife world these days well listen. You know the the generation generation. Z. is coming and they're a skinny Jean wherein hip shoe Erin minimalist crowd because they don't have much money yet. They're getting into the community. Mutiti and I don't disparage them. I kinda get where they're coming from. You know my mom's generation the baby boomers they were collecting shit and I think it was because of that World War Two rationing. That happened spooked everybody like hey. It's this whole world. GonNa work. Are we going to be out of butter forever and so they became like quasi orders.
00:40:02 - 00:45:04
You know girls got silver. They want silverware and the dowry chests all this. Weird Shit and this new generations not like that they don't want eight thousand foot mcmansions and they don't want six cars and it seems like everything they pick. They want it to be a reflection of how saddened they are. You know these are my sneakers. Here's why where lookout unique they are. It reflects on me being a mindful cumin so I'm trying to adapt in be relevant to those guys because they're coming. They are new customer and if we embrace them from the Crockett Daniel Boone approach of knife fighting you know we're GONNA lose them. The Skinny Jean kids wearing these four hundred dollar nike shoes. They're not get night funds. What what does that look like in terms of knives. You said you want to accommodate this generation. How do you do that in making knives. Well you make this big heavy tactical full right now you know I do it by a hip designs and do it with a non squirming on not square company. I'm outspoken. I try to touch under patriotism because they're patriotic. They just don't know it yet and they're more patriotic. The more you ask them questions away from their friends the more you isolate hipsters from a hipster crowd with the perfect beard oil the more they they share the same ideologies a fifth year old ex-marine who's been in the Middle East you start if you queried them away from the silos of left and right politics the more like we are hard than and it doesn't matter if they're black white or anything the more like we are dissimilar. We are so the way I see the politics is I think equip. They like is authenticity so my judgment is with they don't like is a square middle aged guy faking like he's cool I. I don't like that at all so if you're not cool you probably ought to shut up and make knives if you are a little cool. I think it's a good marketing compliment. Paul climent to a cool product if that makes sense to an audience that's looking for cool stuff. You know they like these guys aren't adventuring in Alaska and they're shopping from Wilson you know they're they're buying the best adventure gear the world's ever made because they like the pattern out feels not because going to Alaska to go kill a bear right right. I think yeah you nailed it before. You said it's a talisman of confidence. You know tool yes but it's a little bit more important than a tool. It Talisman is is is exactly the right term. There's something else there's an interesting niche here in. It's a a little spot that I'm trying to steer into so I'm just going to tell you because I don't have much to hide in a world where Phil that's fifty years masculinity ask you liquidity has been kind of had a negative connotation in a world where young men are trying to find their place somewhere between carrying around the baby bag and the baby bjorn and carrying all the stuff like a dead. Sherpa somewhere between there being a lumberjack who drinks too much beer their turn to find this masculine ideal. You know look. I'm trying to find a to you know how WFNC Betterman more sensitive man all these things to make it all work so that I fit in the people around me in an elegant graceful way. I think young guys are trying to do that also in doing that. It is our culture's been so feminist kind of in a swing swing with defendants starting in the nineteen sixties. I think it's over feminist right now and I think one of the things you know watch speaks a little bit too masculinity but but a knife speaks a lot to masculinity and that may be a thing that's going on culturally with young male singer. Hey look man. I've got these skinny jeans is on my girl wear skinny jeans Gwyneth Paltrow. I'm wearing this shirt because it's cool on the show I shop at this place and I'm not really supposed to care about what color at my table is but I'm trying to be supportive of my girl and she expects me from trying to be a good guy so peace had my nuts chopped off one or throw a knife in my pocket. It and it's my little rankled to the world like I'm still a man. It's still here and if you need me still here so when the flood happens give me you call and I'll cut your car. Save Your Life. You know he's a little bit of that just a lurking around the background and I like to be there for that crowd as well well a You know you basically defined me in my lifestyle right. There and I am definitely no youngster. I'm no hipster but I do the suburban lifestyle and like you know. Maybe maybe having this hinderer. My pockets going to pay off today. You know maybe there's her door I'm going to have to I didn't mean that as a disc yeah but yeah you know you.
00:45:04 - 00:50:05
You put these things in your pocket. You spend a lot of time you know wringing your hands over which one to get and then you make could deliberate action and choose it you buy it and then you have it always and that's That's what that's what a Medford knife is. I mean you're very clear about that on your website by one and if you're crazy I guess by two if you're a collector but by one you'll be handing down and down and down through the family. You know what's really funny is when the the initial intellectual leap that's required to buy a five hundred dollar pocket knife or eight hundred pocketknife for twelve hundred dollars that initial leap is usually a bit of a jump but there's a lot of guys with four thousand dollars. Swiss watches so there's a lot of people to do it. Here's what's interesting once. They do it like I don't know if you actually own one of my nights of you actually held one of my nights that I've made no. I have not okay interesting so once guys have made made that leap. It's if it speaks to you. It's really hard to go back and it's really hard to not have six of them. What I find we I think we average eight your average pursue buys for will by seven more. It's pretty fascinating. I mean what are the obviously. That's the ultimate compliment. Yeah I love it. I I have two of your knives on my while. One knife is on my shortlist. The other is a little bit further down but I I'd love to get a Pretoria just like a big old junker. PRAETORIAN and I would love to get love the on belay something about that is just so nice. That was a fluke knife. That was the fluke. That was a fluke design of last cheer. I drew that knife through three nights that day that was one of the knives and it was my least favorite of the three until it was done and I put it in my hand and then I went who are really liked this night because I didn't WanNa make another gigantic knife and then all of a sudden they took off. Everybody wanted him. I want Jesus what they call. The wind make some more of her and also your fixed blade knives. I mean while while we're talking about him deserve mention because to me. I mean the the the US MC fighter is so cool looking and and then also the knife can't remember what you call it but the Combo ground knife that breaks down completely with though yes so on the Hill uh-huh that's the USMC Raider in the wait a minute. You're talking about yeah that's. UC Raider and the too big to fail too big to fail lesser was yeah. I mean those are those are just they're gorgeous. I love the way those blades look. I got to tell you about that night so I stopped making the knife because I thought it was a character. It's too much it's ridiculous and I made a smaller version of it now. Here's what's going on in my head. I said you know I don't know if these guys in Hollywood but if one of them called me up and said you know it's like a good for next move. You'll do less blood would you. Maybe Look Greg. I said I'm going to make that knife and I made the USMC Raider. which is the small version of that big too big? Phil A to get breakdown fighter. Here's what's fascinating. As soon as I said I was going to stop making the big knife those sold out all around the world and then everybody leaned on me to make another another batch so I made another batch and they all sold out and I was like hell or won't do environment. It's expensive night right so this past weekend. We sold like three of them which like offer website which is crazy to me. It's the most obscure night you know. No one's carrying around so we sell stuff all the time so three go on Saturday scratch my head. You never know what the market's GonNa Fall in love with why it's so when when that happens I mean like you have to have that knife on hand How does that milk with no no no so what we do is. I make nights at certain times of the year and that's planned out in October of the preceding preceding year so I said I'm GonNa Make Twenty of those fifty. Those aware it's GonNa be your two hundred fifty of this model and then those are available all all year long we sell them but they're being made in November for instance or they're being made in February in November so depending upon where you are in the order process is what time of with your you'll get your nine. Okay Yeah now remembering actually on your website. There's a there's a little bit of text on each page saying you know patience is a virtue. You might have to wait a little bit for this knife but it's worth waiting for. I always tell people I'd rather have you pissed off at me for a few months and love me for the rest of your life than the reverse you know yeah absolutely absolutely so the kids showing an interest in in all my boys into robotics so if it turns into a big company and doing production my boil probably way might guess is so be an engineer do robotic development. My daughter is a concert pianist and she is in orchestrator and an organizer concert so I could see her being in some capacity but I'm not really a legacy business guy.
00:50:05 - 00:55:18
I feel like they need to cut their own way in the world and find their own passion you know. Yep I I would agree one last thing you have a Yanni or interesting knife story I have to and there's just kind of do not scarier heroin there's just kind of funny into small world so I have nights occasionally gets stolen from customers and get lost from customers and and they'll call me up really dejected in so far with one hundred percent capability returned every missing knife to customers who've had them stolen so I had a good friend of mine who's Mormon is knife went missing and it was a gift from me and he told told me about it. He said I stopped by workplace said Hey. Where's your knife on SAR Walston months ago by Evan called Yuka. They didn't want to tell you and I said you lost that night that was like the number one Pretoria in Gi remain he gone so sorry. I said it'll turn up. Don't worry it's mark number one so three months later giant guy walks in the front of the factory huge huge guy tonight fear. I was wondering can you tell me anything about it and I put the knife in my and number one one on it and I go. You gotta be kidding me. I so I said hey man I go. This actually belongs to a friend of mine. He said I said where'd you get. He goes founded in a chair mango. Really I go. Where did you find it and he says I'm a Bouncer to strip club so I I was cleaning up chairs and I found it matured destroyed so it was spectacular so my friend who's a little pious. I got that through the night. I was like hey guess get. I guess what is is your night. This come back because I got excited. I said I'm going to come down your business. I'll the drop off so I go down with dissolved so exciting. He got a few people out. He's got my back great. Where did you find it. I said well he was which to Cheer Two Gentlemen's Club if you know what I mean and there was this big goal Moceanu Yeah I had a guy who wiped out on his motorcycle recently and he said he was going way to fast wiped out his bike and he had his Taurean in his right hip pocket and he bit it an as he was sliding on the ground in good field fabric wearing through and the tarmac was starting to dig into his flesh he had rotated gotten up on the clip of his life and it was the one spot on the right side of his body between his boots and his shoulder of this jacket with padding on it that he could slide down the road and not get damaged and so he sent his nine fin so that I would clean it up and he said but don't replace the clip I I always want the scratches there because because I think your nights saved my bacon so Portugal cool things like that happen which is great fun that is and and it's just a really cool little twist to the story story that your knife save this guy's life but in a very unexpected way like this like the bet you mentioned crazy. You're just like what you stab somebody with. I know that I use it as a skid plate. You know there were sparks coming up and it was titanium. It was awesome and I'm like. Oh my God you know I'm like tell tell me. He stabbed the bad guy because he chant up as you're breaching a room now now. I got shot in the night. That's okay. I'll think think I got shot in the knife Greg Medford. It's been a pleasure speaking with you. Thank you so much for coming on the knife Junkie podcast. Hey appreciate to have a man listen man. get out of the beltway. Come out to the blade. Show visit me there. I'm always I always have a prominent boot. Dare come out and say hi introduce yourself so we can put the humanity to the to to the intellect. I most definitely will that's. That's the plan. That's coming here. Already started take care. Thanks everybody for listening. Subscribe to the Knife Junkies Youtube Youtube Channel at the KNIFE JUNKIE DOT com slash youtube back on the knife Junkie podcast Jim person with Bob the knife junkie DeMarco Baba just another interesting interview this week and one thing that kind of struck me was just the all in approach. I guess when I when I heard Greg talk about you know how he got into making knives. It wasn't unlike well. I'll I'll start with a you know a little grinder in the garage. I mean like he was all in man. Yeah well coincidentally the term the flying term balls to the wall came to came to my mind at came from bomber pilots in World War. Two in the throttle was all the way up the balls on the top of the throttle are the way to the front wall of the plane and that and that seems to be the kind of Guy Greg Medford is he's got this bold entrepreneurial spirit backed by the bold spirit that was maybe trained into him in the Marine Corps and then the sort of steel nerves it takes to do aerobatics flying so yeah.
00:55:18 - 00:59:01
It's like well if I could do all that stuff I'm GONNA start a knife company boom. The next day goes out buys a building and starts yeah. It's it's inspirational. You know. It's it's direct reaching out for what you want so that means tomorrow. You'll have a knife company but I might I might be closer to the thing I'm GonNa do right but one thing that he said that that just reeked of wisdom was a knife as a talisman of confidence that is a cool way to look at it that is an it's a very a clear way of looking at it you know he's not so much into the collecting aspect of it not that he would scoff at that but but it's not about collecting them necessarily and it's definitely clean out about fidgeting with them. You heard Greg's ideas of what fidgeting means and what it how it reveals character it's about confidence in your pocket and in your hand and knowing that with a with a stout and sturdy tool like a basic knife like that not calling his knives basic of course but you can confidently move forward in the world knowing that you can handle many different things anything else that really stuck with you kind of key takeaway thoughts from the the Greg Medford of Greg Medford Knives interview that you want want to leave us with on this on the spot cast well. It's interesting because in speaking with him I found that I really had a lot of respect for him and in inhering inhering about how he came up with the designs less about how he came up with the designs but how he got to perfect his craft and how he started bringing other people in to to reproduce his his craft and build this company that way so just really another pretty cool interview this week a guy. That's making making custom knives and has this business and you know I think for you Bob. At least I'm interpreting here. I think that's a fun part for you is to really dive in and to hear these stories of how folks are getting into making knives and kind of see their progression and kind of kind of what they made a made from it so it's kind of kind of cool to me hearing that as well yeah it's it's hard not to draw parallels to your own lives when you when you listen to people you admire talking about their success stories and you look at at what you're trying to do in your own life and try and draw the parallels it can be very inspirational and it can it can really commiserated well and if you have any thoughts that you'd like to share on this interview. You liked it. You didn't like it key takeaways that you really found interesting love up to hear from you. Call the listener line at seven two four four six six four four eight seven seven two four four six six four four eight seven leave us a message on that listener listener line and we'd love to play back your thoughts on upcoming podcast either it could be about the Greg Medford interview or anything else about the name Chunky podcast we would love to to hear from you for Bob the knife Junkie DEMARCO. I'm Jim `person. Thank you for joining us on episode number. Forty six of the knife junkie podcast will be back with again next week. Thanks for listening to the Knife Junkie podcast. If you enjoyed the show please rate review with review the PODCAST DOT COM for show notes for today's episode additional resources sources into listen to past episodes visit our website the night junkie dot com you can also watch our latest videos on Youtube. The ninth jokey dot com slash Youtube checkouts a great night photos on the knife junkie dot com slash instagram and join our facebook group a knife junkie dot com slash facebook and if you have a question or comment emailed them to Bob the knife jokey DOT COM or call our twenty four seven listener line at seven two four four six six four and you hear your comment or question answered on upcoming episode of the Knife Junkie podcast.
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