|Q. What types
of steel do you use in your knives?
A. I mostly use Sandvik 12C27 Razor Steel which
is a very high quality steel developed for knife making. It will
hold a durable, sharp edge comparable to that of the high carbon
I can also make knives using:
- 440C Stainless steel
- 416 Stainless Steel and Bronze for guards, bolsters and
- ATS 34 Stainless, 154CM Stainless
- CPMS30V, RWL34
- D2 Tool Steel, O1 Tool Steel, A2 Tool Steel
- Damasteel Stainless Damascus
- Delbert Early Damascus
- Mike Norris Stainless Damascus
I have a selection of Damascus forged by Garry Wood (see pictures)
in various patterns. As this is hand forged each billet will
produce a unique pattern. Garry owns a dairy farm about three and
a half hours drive from Albany. Every few months I travel to the
farm to spend a couple of days on the forge with Garry. I always
bring home a few nice billets, each one individual with the
pattern not emerging until the final etching. It always gives me a
sense of excitement wondering how each blade will turn out.
How do you finish your blades?
A. I can either flat or hollow grind the blades
and I use a Bader grinder. Most of my blades are mirror finished
and I use eight grades of wet and dry working down to 2000 grit by
hand. The final mirror finish is achieved with a loose cloth buff
and a fine compound. On the hollow ground blades I satin finish
the flats giving a nice contrast and accentuating the grind lines.
What timbers can I have in my knife?
A. The timbers I use mostly come from Djarilmari
timbers in Denmark, Western Australia. Neale is licensed to cut timber for the craftwood industry so I have access to some finely figured West Australian hardwoods. They include Western Myall, Jarrah, Gimlet, Marri, Beefwood, Banksia, She-Oak, Lace She-Oak, Ribfruited Mallee Burl, York Gum Burl, Red Morrel Burl, Snap and Rattle, Concinna, Blackwood and occasionally Sandalwood. These are the most popular but there are numerous other timbers I have access to. I also use Ivory, Ebony, Pilbara Jade, Bronze (can be engraved and gold plated), Sambar Antler and all types of jewels. I also use man made materials such as black or ivory Micarta and reconstituted stone like Turquoise. Composite materials are very popular for fishing or kitchen knives. I can also use imported woods such as African Ebony and Coco Bolo in addition to the Western Australian hardwoods, which are chosen for their high natural oil content and robust quality.
What other handle materials do you use?
A. Other materials I use include, deer antler, buffalo horn,
ivory, bronze, nickel silver, opals, sterling silver, brass,
pearls and cut gemstones. The list is endless really.
How do you finish your handles?
A. The handles are finished with a two-part
polymer coating renowned for chip proof and heat resistant
Note: They are not made to be put in a dishwasher
or to be left covered in salt water or fish scales.
What kind of guarantee do you give with your knives?
A. All of my knives will last a lifetime if they are treated with care. Handmade knives are not meant to go into a dishwashing machine, a sink full of hot water or subjected to harsh conditions. The warranty is voided if this is the case. Do not leave your knife in any type of sheath for an extended period of time, as some chemicals used to tan leather can affect the blade steel. I have no control over natural handle materials; they can be subject to movement in certain climatic conditions. I have however been able to source stabilised timber when available and have found it to be a popular choice of handle material. If your handle has moved at all please return the knife to me and I will repair the knife at little or no cost. Please pack the knife thoughtfully and insure it in the post, we do not take any liability if your knife/knives are lost or damaged in transit to us.
Do you supply cases or sheaths for your knives?
A.I do not make timber cases but can make matching timber scabbards for some styles of knives. Additionally, I have access to some very clever craftspeople. Beautifully finished, handcrafted wooden cases of any size can be handcrafted by Ken Williams for your knife if required; there are examples of Ken's cases in the Gallery pages. We also have access to a clever leatherworker in Albany who is making perfect sheathes for some of the knives. Some examples are in the gallery pages.
What methods of payment do you use?
A.We mainly accept payments using EFT Direct Debit. Please contact us for our account information should you prefer to pay using this method. Our international customers may prefer to pay us via Paypal. We DO NOT accept any cheques in international currencies. We can only accept bank drafts in $AUD. In Australia only, we accept postal notes or cheques. Please note, there is a 3-day waiting period for cheques to be cleared before delivery of your knife.
How much do your knives cost?
A. My knives are priced very reasonably. I make steak knives for $220AUD each, my utility knives are priced from $300AUD then my Bowies start at $500AUD. Swords start at around $1500AUD. Fantasy knives and axes begin at $1500AUD and Daggers are $500AUD upwards. These are strictly my starting prices only and will change according to materials used, artwork and design. These prices do not include postage.
Can you send the knife to me in the
A. We can ship to most countries providing local laws and customs
allow. If you are unsure please check with your appropriate
authorities before ordering. We post by Courier International
(E.C.I.) and include insurance. Other methods of post are
available by request. You will be notified when the knife is
completed and ready to post. We require full payment at this
stage, and as soon as the transaction is cleared, the order is
posted and you will be notified of approximate delivery date. On
request, we can photograph and email you a copy of the finished
knife before posting.
Do you make Automatic or Flick knives?
Where can I learn to build knives?
A.There are many places to learn how to build knives on the internet. I have made a knifemaking video DVD titled "The Beginners Guide to the Custom-Made Knife" that can be purchased through the A.K.C. email-
Another good place to start would be the The Knife Network Workshop Tutorials
How long will my knife take to build and send?
A. I can usually have a knife made within four days now that I
have my own heat treating plant in the workshop. Art knives will
still take four weeks or more to make, depending on embellishments
Where can we view your knives that are currently for sale?
A. The knives we have currently in stock are displayed in the Knives In Stock gallery. Gail and I always attend the Perth Wood Show which is held at Claremont Showgrounds on the first weekend in August. After that also in August we take the knives to the Pilbara region of Western Australia. Later in the year we take a large range of mainly cooking and fishing knives to the Margaret River Gourmet Escape, this show is held on the second last weekend in November. If you happen to find yourself in Albany, Western Australia, please contact us prior to your arrival so we can arrange a time for you to view the current collection. You are more than welcome.
I have seen your 'Sunken Treasure' knife available on the internet
for $12.99 - what gives?
A. Yes, we are aware of these Chinese-produced imitations of our
'Sunken Treasure' knife that are being sold cheaply on the
internet. These are not produced by us, nor
are they authorised by us. If you are willing to pay $12.99 for a
custom knife, you will get $12.99 worth of knife. They say
imitation is the highest form of flattery, but in this case I'd
steer well clear.