Tom Krein of Krein Knives joins Bob “The Knife Junkie” DeMarco and they talk about knives and knife making, re-grinds and types of grinds, Bowie Knives, how Tom learned to make knives and how his sons have gotten involved in the business — plus lots more.
Tom Krein - Krein Knives
Find Krein Knives online as well as on Instagram and Facebook.

This show also highlights National Knife Day — and it gives Bob just another reason to buy a knife. But it’s not just Saturday, Aug. 24 was National Knife Day, but it’s Bob’s justification about buying his new knife. Give a listen and find out!

Celebrating National Knife Day with a great conversation with Tom Krein of Krein Knives... super cool knife maker who's churning out some awesome knives. I hope you'll listen to Episode 43 of podcast at www.theknifejunkie.com/43… Click To Tweet

Call the listener line at 724-466-4487 or email bob@theknifejunkie.com with any questions or comments on today’s show.

Show Notes

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Tom Krein of Krein Knives The Knife Junkie Podcast (Episode 43)

00:00:03 - 00:05:08

Welcome to the knife. Junkie podcast your weekly dose of knife news and information about knives and knife collecting. There's your hosts jim person above the knife junkie demarco pacific. Hello junkies welcome to episode number forty three three of the knife chunky podcast. I'm jump person and i'm bob demarco and like you have a knife problem. Welcome to the show okay. What an intro we you gotta talk about that. What do you eat well. I was just before we started rolling jim. I was saying yesterday was national knife day august twenty fourth august twenty fourth and i i showed such good discipline in not ordering a knife on national knife day that today i just might reward myself for that disciplined by ordering a knife and i just realized how nice justification yeah that's problematic while i was i was googling national knife day and on the days of the year site it says knife day is the day to appreciate the knives that folks use on a daily basis. This day is a celebration of this marvellous marvelous tool that has been with humans since the dawn of time. That's kind of what we've been talking about. you know the knife as the first tool that is an amazing definition to round roundout that holiday and i think it needs to be quarterly but i'll take a yearly. I'll take an annual. Maybe we'll start. Maybe we'll start the the knife junkie quarterly something something. I don't know what to think about that. Yeah we will yeah so . You're going to reward yourself with a knife. What is it do you know yet well. It's because i'm on the mailing list list of knife centre and they sent this email two days after my birthday it was a they found in the warehouse could easily these older blackjack sort of randall copy at randall made knives are these amazing american made knives jim. Am i think you saw video about a guy who found a whole bunch of yes other beautiful handmade knives and i've always wanted one. If you get one from them custom mm-hmm you're gonna wait five years to get it or something like that spent quite a bit of money and then if you find him on the secondary market they do cost a lot of money. Blackjack is a a company that was originally owned run by mike stewart who has who owns and runs bark river knives and everyone knows the quality of bark overnight anyway so he was he would make make reproductions or copies of a presumably licensed copies of the randall made fighter models and they're beautiful and the the have mike stewart's touches like the convex edge and just incredible construction so they found there was one in there with ivory my carta for a lot cheaper than you would buy it if you were to get it new and so i had to get it okay. That's gonna come and i'm going to call that my second bertha knife right and i'm sure we'll see a collection selection video on that at some point in time indeed and you're still going strong those pretty much every day. Well yeah. They're fun. I i have to represented one of these before i can call or do anything and you know especially if you keep buying lying knives. You'll never get through every night. You have so then you won't have to sell. That's i see the motive behind your your plan here. It's too. It's the moment it gets back in your hands. You like uh-huh. Maybe i should just keep this one right. When reminder that i've chunky podcast is brought to you by our sponsor the upside app. It's a great way to save cash. on your ask purchases actually get gas back cash back when you buy gas. It's an app you simply. Put it on your smartphone. I used it yesterday when i was out in about buying gas did a search which of the area found the station went and bought it bought gas just print the receipt out. Take a picture of their receipt with your smartphone and just like that you've got cash back into your account so if you want to get it and start saving some money go to the knife junkie dot com slash save on gas. It's all one word. The knife junkie dot com slash save on gas gas bob another interview show today. Who do we have that. You're gonna be talking to an what's our what's our main subject matter today today. I'm speaking with knife maker tom. Tom crying who first came on my radar for his stellar blade. Re grind people would send them knives. They want rebound he'd regretting them and then you'd see his little bulldog logo oh over the rebound portion which always just looked so cool to me anyway. He's been making knives for years now and these beautiful sort of small scale fixed blades on the whole. There's the ones i know him for the one knife that he makes that i would really like to get my hands on the pocket buoy. It's a little bowie knife that fits it's in a little leather sheath that fits in your front pocket and it is gorgeous and it looks like it would be a cool knife to scale up anyway. He was a great guy to talk to. It was very interesting to hear about his trajectory his shop and how his family's involved and it was just really great to talk to him well.

00:05:08 - 00:10:00

We're going to hear that. So why don't we do right now. You're listening to the knife junkie podcast. If you've got questions or comments call the twenty four seven knife junkie listener line at seven two four four six six four four eight seven tom crime thanks for joining me on the knife. Junkie podcast glad to be here. Thanks for inviting me. it's my pleasure. You're known for your grinds and i've known you for your money. I guess i i got to know you from your regrets and seeing people do videos on how exquisitely you re ground some sort of big fat knife but in in kind of looking you up and looking at your website you mentioned that you have always always been a knife guy. What's what's that all about. Why what is it about knives. That's always captured you man. I've been fascinated with knives. Since i was a little kid and i think you know i think it started just seeing my dad and like my grandpa my granddad. They all carried knives every single one of them always had a knife in their pocket and you know i could see league the usefulness of that even at a young age and you know. I don't know i mean i've. I've always loved guns and knives. I mean literally as a little kid before for school. I would draw them and my . My mom was pretty disturbed about all that and kinda forbade made it do any of that but you know later on i found out that she went to counselling over it which is kind of crazy but he no. I think it's a healthy thing you know. It's a hit tools and and you know it's really one of man's greatest tools that knife in my opinion and allows you to vint defend yourself if needed i think a firearm is better choice but you know if you don't have one you use what you got right and all knives or tools al-najjar weapons so it's kinda neat thing to me that's refreshing to hear because oftentimes people kind of ignore the weapon side of things and gravitate towards the more civil tool aspect of it and and i i respect that you know one like ninety nine point eight percent of the time it's used used as a tool as a daily sandwich cutter but i think to a kind of neglect its role as a weapon his kind of shortsighted yeah. you know our his the history of knives in general seems to be shortsighted as far as today we know with the instagram and pictures all that kind of thing and you know if you go back a hundred years people understood what knives did go back two hundred years. They understand knives. You go back further further the even more so well. You're you're talking to me from arkansas right correct land of a bowie knife bouillon bowie high. I don't know there's a lot of controversy there. I think the correct ways buoy but i always say bowie because that's how i grew up and you know once you start hearing something some way. That's how it's always said. I think it's correctly done buoy buoy will. I'm a yank. I was kinda thought like blue the when i said i kind of second guess myself but i mean to me me. That's the quintessential. It is the quintessential american knife and it is my favorite blade pattern me too well. What is it about the moee as as far as the blade shape or or you talking historically the weapon well know about the blake. Why why do you love it so much. so i love i love the buoy shape simply because you can scale it up or down and scaled up to its full size is it's. It's a weapon close quarter weapon and feel tool. I mean there's nothing close to it as far as utility or versatility in a few if you do james keating is yes the the the bowie knife fight that long bell but yeah yeah well well. He did the crisanto and some other stuff but he he had a series of d._v._d.'s still does and you can still buy them and it's unlocking the secrets of the bowie knife and that that sharpen switch as a when you understand it. It's a formidable tool in close quarters. The back cut get that's it. That's the secret grew and and even if it's not fully sharpened just the gouging tip with a back cut his is something to consider those i highly recommend keating's work. I worked with him for quite a while and it really neat stuff but the cool thing to me is when you scale it down you know for me when i use daily what i use knives for usually as the utility stuff and i find that the bowie scaled down like my t._k.

00:10:00 - 00:15:00

For many bowie or my pocket bowie there's plenty of belly to do all your daily chores but there's enough point that if you need to you know dig a splinter out order which is a common occurrence in my household you know or whatever you need. If you need to clean it trout say you can there's plenty of tip to get the job done we were talking just before i hit the the roll button that i love your pocket bowie. I think that's the model in with the with the jig bone handle. It's just it's just so beautiful and the size when you see it. I've never held it myself but when you see it in someone's hand hand you realize just how small it is but the shape it's formidable. Thanks i think i'm best known for my small fixed blades. You know i i liked liked to make knives that are easily carried because if you don't carry them you don't get a used them and it doesn't really take much of a blade to get a lot done and i i try try to make the biggest small knives you'll ever have and you mentioned jig bone and jig bone is a super traditional handle material and i think it fits the smaller naturally will and it's very classic and it's a good material is beautiful and now you know it's relatively inexpensive yet. It's got that warm and traditional channel. I can't help it get nostalgic when i see that material. I just think of you know my grandfather and times. I never lived in so you mentioned james keating in that you worked with him. What capacity did you work with james keating. I i met james keating when i worked for bob dosier so i work i work for bob for about three and a half years and basically at that that time bob was building christopher james keating tell it tell us what crisanto his so occur. Sada is a knife that james keating designed is a pretty large fighting knife. It's about fourteen to sixteen inches overall. It's it's a big piece and it's designed as a fighter. It has spanish notch has the the qu- williams has the horns so it's it's an interesting design from james keating and then you know bob decided to stop stop making them and then i ended up not working for bob for a while and then i worked for a._g. Russell for quite a while a couple of years and then when i went out on my own we kinda reconnected and he was looking for someone to build the crusaders and so i started building christina's and i i just kind of one of those things is it worked out and one of the things i never liked about the crisanto was the handle shape because it didn't use to have the birds head pommel and i asked james mike. Would it be okay if i redesigned the handle on this because you know it always feels like its its way forward and wanted to shoot out of my hand coffin shaped handle. No it wasn't really coffin shaped. It just didn't have any bird's beak. So how come you know on a knife that big when you're moving fast it it really did want to squirm out of your hands so redesigned that and then we made quite a few the dagger blades and then you know he had the the videos on the boeing owes like you know i think i could design a bowie blade would work and balance the same as the other blade and so we did that and yeah we made a bunch of those back in the day i made trainers forum and yeah so so as you mentioned before you're known for your small fixed blade knives but so you have a past in making these really giant fighting fighting bowie knives. That's that's an interesting contrast yet and and i still make big knives. You know i mean just not as many of them right now we've got. I just finished a few mekos which are about a four inch fighter and i've got some t._k. Nine bowie's which are about a six inch blade in the works explode yep most gravitate to about three or less inch blade 'cause. It's seems easier for me to to make and so on people to actually use something something that you're going to have on you. Something i saw in one of your videos is your . She thinks system. You know it's sort of that. you know the the pull cord and in the waistband style kerry but with the leather sheath which i thought was so cool because i've done that myself just kind of now she's at were purpose built for that but you know you just kind of like why can't i just kind of tether it at the bottom and just kind of stick it and i love that i love the thought of concealed carry but with leather other come back back to basics a little bit what and i mean that will work with kite exit work with leather. we do tech clocks we do the mumber. Clip is is really good. I really like that. mark mumber is a a knife maker and he makes a clip in. It's basically a titanium clip that will fit fit techniques pacing so we make a leather sheath with holes in it that those fit on so you can drop a small fixed blade right in your front pocket. That's we use alty clips for for another option.

00:15:00 - 00:20:11

That's another good option. Really we try to. We try to have a lot of different options for kerry because not every carry method works for everyone like the t._k. One and the cayenne and the pocket boy they're small enough that with the right she they'll drop right in your pocket and you won't notice that's actually a mode of carry that has been more and more more interesting to me. recently is just something that's just small enough and i don't have i don't wear giant pants with huge compati- pockets but still still like i i want sometimes i just wanna fix blade and i will frequently carry it in the small of my back kind of tucked in my waist band but in the summertime it's kind harder to get away with that and i just don't feel like having that in their sort of have a fixed blade in my front pocket in some sort of sweet little leather thing that mimics the shape of my of of the pocketed self is is kind of a something. I've been thinking about a couple of things so one thing. I found the front pocket. If you just do like a full dover sheath and drop it in your pocket tuck it does the same thing as like a a folder that you drop in your pocket a lot of times it just go sideways at the bottom and it just super uncomfortable so we we started making pocket. She lisa like rectangular so they drop in. It's got a bottom that kind of hits bottom and doesn't tip but what i really liked to do with the like the t._k. One or the cayenne is paired with aaa flashlight so you've got a light and a knife and the extra width actually makes it carry better because it doesn't fall over right but it has a purpose and you get your late in there yeah and i got i got inspiration from that from a couple of holster makers in the past worked with that did stuff for magazines spare bear mags and and guns and stuff like that so some of that was you know i adapted it to the knife industry but by no means was at my my invention or idea to start with so so with your knives themselves. What is your design philosophy. I know that that for you function they always form always follows function yeah but but give me your design philosophy. What are you looking to make so i you you know the way i designed. Knives is probably a lot similar to some people. It's different than others. I mean it's we're all different. it's much different than a few close close friends like loops burn can onion they when they go to design something they they imagine like a room or whatever and mars or whatever and they start designing that way . I've tried that. I can't do it. I i do it a different way. Basically i imagine myself doing whatever i am wanting learning to do like say. I'm making hunting knife. I'm like i started imagining what i'm doing and how how i use it how it fits my hand and and that's kind of my designs is are pretty purpose driven if i sit down and i'm doing design work. I'm like well. I kind of want a persian style fighter with you know that i can carrie say three and a half inch blade. That's a knife that i recently been working towards and i'll and i'll just kinda look at historical knives for inspiration and then think about what i'm asking of it and where how i'm going to carry it and then another important thing that a lot of guys don't think of as what how how can how can i make. This will my tools. What will my tools allow me to do because i have to work designs around what tools because if i can't make it it doesn't matter how awesome the design is so very purpose driven when i sit down and design and i think my knives show that they're not they're not flashy. They're not. I think they have nice lines but they're simple lines and they're hopefully when you see him. You can look at it and say hey. I totally understand this when you pick it up. You're like oh yeah. This works to the i. Elegant elegant yes elegant lines but purpose driven definitely and so i wanna ask you about your grinding in your and how oh you got started and i heard of you i from your regrets but before we get to that i wanna say you're known for your blades for sure but i also kind of know you i can identify when you're knives from the the handles for sure and they you know we. We keep talking about short. We keep talking about the the the pocket bowie like that handle to me is not only early looks comfortable just kind of intuitively but it also looks like a shrunken down version of the kind of big sort of handle. I like on a big bowie with the two big swoops in and and the flared out pommel and everything yeah yeah for sure if you look at the you know the the later crusade is that we were building you can see the inspiration for those handles because i do several different handles like that but it's far as grinding you know resign kinda interesting. You know when i when i started to do that i had no. I mean there was no. Nobody that i knew of that was doing regrets. As far as i know i was was. The first person in the way that came about was kind of funny because you know back in the day we had forums and that was about it and i was on blade forums that was before i was on u._s.

00:20:11 - 00:25:00

In so that's that's been a long time ago you know do you remember cliffs. Damn i remember the name but so he he was on blade forms arms in he's he's controversial character. I actually really liked cliff. Love them or hate either way. It doesn't matter but he he was always pushing the edge on performance formats and he posted in the group he had a i want to say the first night i ever rebound was a faulkner ivan blade and he he was like hey. I'm look for someone to grind this. I wanted any these specs and i think it was like five thousand behind ledge at at so far up he wanted you know oh seven thousand sir you know he had all these specs and everybody was saying it can't be done can't be done. I sit in and i got on there. You know back in the day. It was funny the the the guys on there that we're all like the people that lay down the law of what couldn't be done it was like i was kind of funny because they would be like it can't be done but they talk about how they grounded. Blake took all day to grind blade in. It's like kinda crazy but 'cause. I was working for dosier at the time or ahead already worked for dosier yeah. I don't know and i told cliff i'd do it and that was the first three grind and you know. I didn't have a term for it. You know it was just a grind and then you you know when when people started asking for it we developed something called a re grind and then you know this was back when the spider delica inspite aucoin dera they were all really thick sabree grinds. The none of them were flat. 'cause nobody wanted that you know back in the day and so we did a lot i did a lot of grinds on those and that's kind of how that came about and you know i think people are starting to wake up. As far as it's interesting in the knife industry you know people sell steel right and i think nick. There's a lot of maybe ignorance isn't the right word but a lot of misconceptions because steelers quantifiable item. You know if this has has three v steel. I mean three steals good period all day long right well. Maybe there's there's more that goes into performance in just the steel because it goes comes down to heat treat right and then geometry and i think geometry's probably the most important thing as far as performance for cutting and a lot of these knives from the factories just were really thick nick and they didn't perform well because of the geometry was wrong and so it turned out crazy. I had to stop for a while because literally. It took over everything i was doing. The the game at the time was not about building a cutting tool necessarily now yeah not and and companies. I can't really make knives thin you know for the general public. This is all about numbers game right so this is what what will sell to the general public and and they won't get it back but if you're a knife fanatic or enthusiasts and you know how to use a knife a thinner knife it doesn't need to be overbuilt and it will and and as long as you're not prying with it. It'll cut so much better. It's it's ridiculous. Um and it's much easier to take care of. 'cause there's like literally twenty percent of the steel to sharpen sharpen when you go to sharpen it and yeah. It's all about performance. So what what would you say are the hallmarks of your blades like what what what is the the thing that defines your night your knives. Well my my custom knives. You know i think i like to grind my knife's. Then my knives are not made to be impact tools a a few specific knives are but for the most part grandma is very thin because in the field if you need to sharpen them a thick knife is is really hard to sharpen and and also a thin knife with the right geometry will will really well. I mean it it will cut it will surprise you how how well they will cut and and actually that cutting performance can make up for brute strength i think and that's just in my own noodling around and i mean and it's interesting interesting. I mean in this industry. I think you should have an open mind. You know when i started to me intuitively. The scandi grind was worthless. it just wasted. Oh no no not at all. It's it's funny. I i bought a more. I was like everybody's talking about this and i do a lot of woods. Type stuff stuff and i was like well. I'm i like to put my money where my mouth is. I'm gonna try stuff you know and i i had my own opinions but my opinion is if i have never tried i tonight it's not backed by fact so i bought one and i tried it and i was like and i did a lot of wood carving at the time i still do some but aw i was blown away by what it did on would i was like what i like. How does this work. It can't work. I didn't understand it and now i do because you know zero era grind.

00:25:00 - 00:30:07

There's no secondary edge so for wood and for self defense. There's there's certain applications where there's nothing that will do as good a scandi or zero grind you know at once again. It's application driven. it is counter intuitively a more a more delicate edge than anything else i'd do so because angle is you know it's twenty five degree angle as twelve and a half degrees on each side. You know twenty five inclusive whereas when we normally sharpened were out at thirty plus it's thicker acre immediately behind that right right so the scandi grind is it's a it's a really neat thing and firday defensive knives where you're not gonna be abuse. E-emits is very purpose driven man. They cut great chisel grind same thing i'm not super big fan of chisel grinds for you know utility use or whatever but for self-defence. Let's get right once again. They're narrow thin yet. They track oddly through materials if you're just using them but if you just sticking in somebody who earns yeah and if you're in if you're actually cutting some one it actually does a lot if you care it makes the wound worse because it has different pull all on either side even besides that so much thinner. I mean once again. You're you know edged geometry goes into it and it's really it's bizarre things you preconceived. Steve may not actually be true and you know what i want to use it chisel grind for everyday cutting purposes probably not what work yeah sure but yeah so what about a combat grind so complex grind has to me a few specific applications as far as what i do. I don't don't do a lot of them. I feel that if you do an accident acts always needs to be convex one for strength to any other blake lake grind will stick in would it just doesn't really work well in is too much surface area touching at the same time. I i don't know what it is. A complex grind is just just what what works well on an axe and stuff like that but the idea convex grinding a couple big choppers. I think that's a good place for convex grind. 'cause you really need that thicker edge for strength and i do a couple of hunting axes that i do that and they're not very big but they're designed to skin took up and skin with and you know this is something i do not recommend any mind is go through pelvis or any of that stuff can you do it sure odds. Are you're gonna knock a big chunk out of the edge because i like is hard and thin and they're not designed for that but if you wanna do that you sent him is what's that it will be my second for that part. Yeah your rx or a saw. I think assad is what i personally use. it's one of gerber saw with a the bone blade it works really great on the pelvis and opens things up and there's not little splinters and nasty stuff that will cut you so let me backtrack and ask you. How did your knife career begin at. You're you're a knife maker. How did it begin so in high school. i got said late thumbs book knives and knife makers great book out of print for a long time and i was and i was also introduced to blade cut blade magazine my sophomore year and i was like you know this is really cool. I wanna do this . My parents had a different idea they. I was destined for med school and that's where they pushed me. So i went to college. was premed. I took nursing to get into the medical field and start my career so i could work my way through and stuff and i decided that you know this really wasn't for me. I i didn't wanna do medicine medicine and was out of my own and i just kinda got the nerve daytona parents know basically and i think i was a disappointment to my dad bad the whole time just for that you know i think he was proud of what i was able to become a bill but as far as you know he always thought i should have been a doctor but so long doc story short i went to nursing school started working as a nurse because i needed you know to make money and that's really about all i had and when we move back home a couple years after that to arkansas i went to school in tennessee. i got a house with a garage and i was like i'm gonna make some knives you know when i this is something that i always wanted to do and back then we had like co voles sheffield's and texas gun a knife supply some other places is like that and i bought a bunch of supplies started make knives you know and they're really crappy. N. was really hard because there was no internet then this was twenty seven years ago twenty only six years ago and where i live you know a._g. Russell knives is literally thirty minutes away less and so i made some knives is i got the bob loveless book on knives and the david bowie book on how to make knives and i my first one i took it over to a._g. Russell couldn't have been more proud crowd and he's like yeah needs some work and he gave me some pointers and that happened back and forth.

00:30:07 - 00:35:01

I would build a knife and take it over there. Show him and we've. I'm kinda developed a relationship. I mean that's. I can't imagine something more valuable than that is a as a young you know knife artists coming up. You need someone to critique your work especially a master and he was honest and he was also encouraging. You know in that book that i mentioned is a knife makers bob dosier is featured in that quite a bit he does the how to build in there and his niger all through it and you know bob was from louisiana but and come to find out he had started working pray g russell and he was actually thirty minutes away too so i built like thirteen knives and then a._g. Was like hey you know bob's looking for help and i was working as a nurse at the time but we don't have any kids and my wife also nursing you know i actually asked and got permission to go apply for this and so my wife has always been super supportive and you know basically i went went from a good paying nursing job to work for bob and baba's was like i am not going to teach you how to make knives period but he couldn't get good help and . I'm one of those guys that if i gotta be there eight it'll be that five toy probably in l. Show up and be there. You can count on me and gonna work. This is what i wanna do and so he put me to building grinders because they did the dosier grinder at the time and cleaning the shop at somebody wouldn't show up and he'd be like hey. I need you over here so teach me something and i'd do that until i got autumn two or three weeks caught up and then he put me back on grinders and by the end of the first year i'd gone through every single stage and could do everything in the shop and i had the keys of the shop bob might show up any might not show up and i was basically he made me a supervisor the shop so i ran the shop for about three and a half years what an in education my god that apprentices under a master basically what was it was basically getting paid to go to school in in you know i joked the first year bob. Pay me six dollars an hour for the first year. I showed up for oh. I did get a raise. He started me at five dollars and fifty cents but six dollars an hour for the first year in . I didn't need the money in this what i wanted to do and was passionate about and you know i bought in hundred percent. You obviously got something way. Hey more valuable out of it than the money. Oh yeah man. It was like literally getting paid to go to night school. Yeah i guess something a lot of us. maybe people who are listening probably dream of in one way or another. It just like everything lined up. It was a very fortunate thing so what's your your shop like today your own shop my shop now. So it's interesting. We've we've changed quite a bit in the last year or so. i've i've had the building that i am at right now for probably ten or twelve years and the back two-thirds of it has always been unfinished but about a year ago two years ago we started i started needing more space and so we started finishing the back put a new roof on we insulated. We dropped another two hundred a panel for electricity in basically up until that point. My shop was about nine hundred square feet which it it was a pretty nice shop up set up for one guy but my kids started working with me so they work their way through high school so my my eldest son is in almost finished college. My middle son went to college last year but he's decided not to go to college again this year and he's actually going to be staying home and working in the shop and then my youngest son who's a sophomore is starting to work this year so we we've always had a few people and then a co two years ago. I hired a fulltime employees and then about that was probably three years ago and then two years ago. I hired another one. I've got an office manager. tom who does shipping also runs all the scenes. We've got a c._n._c. Mail now which is kind of crazies. He does all the scenes he stuff and he's a he's a art good knife maker on his own right. This year will have three full-time employees other than myself plus a part time employee. Wow so how many everything that comes out of your shop a uh goes through your hands help. How long does how much do you put out so right now. it's it's kind of interesting. We're averaging about thirty eighty twenty five to thirty nine a week and right. Now i do everything from glue on glue up out basically so doing all the grinding being doing all the handwork.

00:35:01 - 00:40:05

I'm doing a lot of stuff and there's really no reason for me to do that. You know that's the stuff i did for dosier and and i'm on on me a little bit just because i haven't trained my employees to where i need to and so i've i've started doing some training because you know if we put our logo on it the quality's polities air that's going to be always how it works right and that's the final say but i've actually started training my son's to do some different stuff so my youngest son zach and then my middle son ben and jake this summer they all wanted to build knives and i'm like perfect because you no i mean to make some money and you know they still work in the shop where i needed to do whatever but then they have some knives they're working on and it's nice for them to actually want want to do it not for you to have to like make them do it. No yeah this is all on them and it allowed me to start teaching some different stuff so they've done you know ninety percent of the work on these knives when they're like. I can't get this mike. I'm teaching them to scandi grind and so they're the plunges are hard to to learn but after five or six knives got it you know they're they're skinny grinding as good as i am and this is all freehand. Would i seferian. There's arrest with scanty grinding. There has to kind of be arrest the way i do it because it's twelve and a half degrees and it's really hard to be super super accurate with that without arrest but you still free handing it against the rest and it's it's easy to mess it up sure not paying attention so they're all up to speed on that at this point so they can all do skin to grinds as well as i can all right. Let me ask you this. So you know. Artistic skill runs through families home. What do you think do you think you've passed some talent along to your sons so i don't. I don't know about talent. I think they're all extremely talented. I think most of the stuff we do is is learnt can be learned you know as far as design work you have to be passionate but when i started man my drawings drawings of knives sucked and it's something that i've worked at and as you make them you learn how to design if you if anyone saw my early design and stuff they'd laugh you know but you learn scale. You learn curves. She learned what works and what doesn't work and they're actually learning that. They've all done designs designs this summer and they're good. I've helped them find tuna little bit because of what worked with our tools and yeah yeah. I think they're going to be good. We're gonna have some those up for sale before long what's cool as we modified our logo so instead of it saying crying and the a year which is what the bulldog in the middle which is milo benz knives say be crying. Jake's r. j. crinan sacks z. cries. That's that's so cool very cool. Yeah take ownership of what they're doing. They're so so that is a collaboration in a in a in a micro sense. You've done some collaborations elaborations on a macro sense. You had a pocket bowie and something else. I can't remember the name with boker. You probably had more that i i don't know but it's something i've brought up with with. People have been speaking with recently. Is this these super high end. Companies churning out high fidelity reproductions reproductions accustomed knives or just production knives on really high-end scale and to me the one thing that separates that that from what you are doing is well the handwork for sure. I mean what you're doing is so hands on but what some other makers doing also so it is just the custom spirit. There's like actual spirit that goes into it from the artist because you're spending time with that piece of work. It's not just rolling along along a factory beltline even though it's coming out perfect at the end it. There's something that's missing from it. What is it like for you to collaborate of whether it's with your sons or with a with a company like boker you know every different collaboration. Every collaboration is different. How about that you know now i working with boker and columbia river knife and tool great great experiences i've i've worked with both of them quite a bit it great companies. I love seeing what the companies are able to do right now. They're they're pushing. The limits hard right now and it's pretty neat. I love that they're collaborating with custom makers. You know factor knives their tools. You know i mean i. I love knives period if you if you were in my office i could show you. I've got literally everything from five dollar factory knives to you know hi in customs and i i don't know i just loved knives.

00:40:05 - 00:45:00

You know whether it's a swiss army knife or whatever they're they're useful at carry him. I i agree to a point as far as there being something special about a custom knife and even when they're not perfect you know i mean randall nice for instance. The i love the i love them. I i don't know why i just do you know historically. There's a great story behind it. there's there's still a lot of craftsmanship are perfect no but they're they're perfectly good the way they are. They're perfect tool. It's that japanese concept the beauty in imperfection you know like a japanese ceramicist will will build imperfection into their work for for the movie of it. I am and my knives aren't perfect either. I'm sure there's a lot of custom makers that look at my knives and they're like man. You need to work on your finish because i build a knife to work eric you know and that's kind of where i came from with my background with bob dosier on dosier knives. I i finished mine differently than bob very similar. If you look at my knives and look at dodgers knives you can definitely see the heritage. Bob builds a great knife. I mean they're they're hardcore recognize. He's he's made a name for himself. Building those kind of nights and that's that's not all he's ever built her all he still builds but you know those three hundred dollar hardcore hunting knives and outdoor knives or where he's made his lunch you you know i mean that's his bread and butter and a lot of respect for bob in the knives he built because really there wasn't a lot of people building that kind of knife when he started everybody was building that the high i polished mirror mirror polished with the guards and all that and bob was to what advice would you give well. You know i'm not going to ask ask that way. I'm gonna say it seems to me you know i i've been in denies since i was a kid in the seventies and i've i've seen the knife world especially in the last ten years an eleven years since i saw nothing fancy in my eyes were open to social media and knives. I've seen the knife world expand hugely and it seems like you see a lot of new people all the time making youthful stuff after not too long of hacking hacking it out . Do you have any advice or or per. Would you have any any recommendations for a way to go about it too. Some of these younger companies younger companies are younger younger makers. I i think it's i think it's an interesting time right now. you know when i started it was it was early. Nineties and internet really wasn't out out there. for sure didn't have access to it for quite a while but you know there was books and . I still think there's a lot of value in books but it really it. It depends on how you learn right so some people can read a book and learn. I'm one of those people some people have to watch. Something and some people need to be hands on. I think everybody could do with hands on you know. There's so much information on the internet. Just be careful where you're getting because some of these guys maybe you shouldn't be it paying attention to what they're doing but if you can find someone in your area if you're if you're wanting to start making knives. That's a great way to get some hands on and that's you know oh. I've helped several people in. It's it's it's good to give back and so things have also changed in the industry back. When i started nobody was gonna show you anything right now with the with the forums and and in the internet it's almost like that's all changed because it's like you know uh we used to do you know the whip builds and different stuff like that on the forums and that just opened everything up because there's really no secrets anymore so now there's no point did not sharing right it it. It automatically separate the wheat from the chaff because everyone's got the same information so yeah i think i think there's there's a lot of good in books and any information i'm of the i'm of the mindset to read or watch anything and take what i can use and go from there. You know there's usually something i can take even if it's not to do it that way. Yes yes so what what it is. The future of crying knives future man. I don't know man. We're going to keep doing what we do. hopefully we're having fun. build building knives and you know who knows maybe maybe the kids will decide. They wanna make nice but at the end of the day this is my hi dream not their dream. They have to follow their dreams so you know we're going to do hopefully we're going to be doing this for a while. You know we never know what tomorrow brings but . If i have any saying ended yeah i'll be.

00:45:00 - 00:50:07

I'll be making knives for quite a while. I it's what i am passionate about. I love building functional tools and well. How can how can people find you. You can people find your knives and get in touch with you so you know have a facebook group that crime knives group . That's really where i'm most active. I'm in their daily. i try to do a morning post kind of showing what's in progress in the shop open what i'm listening to. We do a lot of you know hey. What are you reading type stuff off and we have a good time in there too. It's a pretty good group of guys . I'm on instagram instagram's a tough one for me. I just it's a hard place has to do business. It's a great place to put pictures and so my son ben. is a really great photographer and he's going to be here. All aw all year is what the plan is were actually starting to figure out what he's going to do and i think i'm gonna put him on my instagram so it's more intuitive for him and really we could get we should be taken pictures allot more pictures and putting them up and we just haven't so if i can. I think that's gonna be part of his daily job and so it just makes sense as good fit so we're on instagram. Were on facebook. you can email me at crying knives or you can go to my website crying and dot net and find all the contact information well as as a serial procrastinator myself i would say yeah. I think it's really smart for you to have your young son. Takeover the instagram's visual 'cause you know at work when i'm uploading or downloading or rendering or whatever i'm doing. I'm sitting waiting for a machine. What do i do. Let's look at knives. You know so i look i look at all the knives on instagram the other thing i was going to say is i guess guess a shout out to your facebook group because one of the videos i was watching of up one of your collectors someone collect your knives scored the most beautiful more than i thought i was telling you before about the with the bone handle and he got that on your facebook group and he was one of three so yeah if you're you're looking to get a tom crying knife i. It seems like the facebook group is the way to go. It really is well. Tom crying. It was a pleasure having you on the knife junkie podcast. Thank you so much as for coming on and . I think i speak for many of us. When i say look forward to see what's coming up next from you so thanks for coming on my pleasure. Thanks for having me subscribe to the knife. Junkies youtube channel at the knife junkie dot com slash youtube. We're back on the ninth junkie podcast jim along with bob the knife chunky demarco and other great interview tom crying. They're just throw this out there. If you want to help support the knife junkie podcast and you're in the market to buy knife either off amazon or off ebay goto chunky dot com slash shop amazon or the knife junkie dot com slash shop ebay. You'll pay the same price you normally would but but we get a small commission and it helps pay our bills here at the nypd chunky podcast so bob interview with tom pretty a pretty cool guy yet. Yeah indeed it's it's always great to get to know a little bit get to know someone whose work i really admire and it was extinct to see that he had some serious mentors and annette's steph shows in his work but i i love the fact that i love when people aren't squeamish about approaching knives as weapons but what i thought was interesting he he's he's a man from arkansas just like jim bowie and the bowie knife at least anyway hills from arkansas and he's got a serious affinity entity for it and i just kind of think of brings everything full circle. It's kinda cool. So what did you think about today's interview. Gifts call on the listener line. Let us know favorite park and maybe got a question that came out of it anyway. Call the listener line seven two four four six six four four eight seven seven two four four six six four four eight seven. Leave us a question or comment or something that we could play here on the podcast. We'd love to hear from you. Bob panel font as we wrap up episode number forty three of the chunky podcast well l. we just celebrated as we mentioned national knife day but remember every day is every monday that's right. Every day is for bob the knife junkie demarco. I'm jim person thank you truly for listening to the knife junkie podcasts without you. This wouldn't be possible so we say thanks for listening. Thanks for listening to the ninth junkie podcast. If you enjoyed the show please please rate and review it review the podcast dot com for show notes for today's episode additional resources and to listen to pass episodes visit our website the night junkie dot com bob you can also watch our latest videos on youtube the ninth junkie dot com slash youtube kick out some great night photos on the night junkie dot com slash instagram and join our facebook facebook group but the knife junkie dot com slash facebook and if you have a question or comment email them to bob that the knife joke dot com or call our twenty four seven listener line at seven into four hundred four six six four seven and you make sure your comment or question answered on upcoming episode of the knife junkie podcast.

 

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