Don’t miss Les’ latest article, “Collecting: The Art of the Steel,” published on pages 82-87 in the current June issue of Blade Magazine.
Today’s hottest forged knives are boasting flashy San-Mai and Damascus blades. More so than any time over the last 30 years, Damascus and San Mai blades are no longer the purview of just Master Smiths. Due to improved equipment and the availability of information, Les finds several Apprentice Smiths and Journeyman Smiths creating some exceptional blades.
Some have the skills required to make the blades, but still need improvement on the overall knife. Other makers, such as the ones featured in the article, have abilities that belie their status in the American Bladesmith Society. They are few and far between; none the less, they do exist. The problem is and has been, the price of their knives is not commensurate with their status in the market. That said, each collector will make up their mind with regards to the pricing.
His recommendation to collectors is to do your homework to understand the details of the knife you are looking at and judge them on their own merit. This is important as there has been a growing trend, particularly among Journeyman Smiths, of pricing their knives more than they are worth in the marketplace.
This publication will be free with your admission into the Blade Show. See ya in Atlanta at the show!!