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FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

 
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 steels.
I can also make knives using:
  • 440C Stainless steel
  • 416 Stainless Steel and Bronze for guards, bolsters and other fittings
  • 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
Garry Wood

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.
Garry Wood
Q. 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.
Q. 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 and Red Morrel Burl. 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, where the handle can be immersed in water if required. 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. Lately, I have been using Zebra Stone and Jade from Marble Bar in Western Australia.
Q. 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.
Q. How do you finish your handles?
A. The handles are finished with a two-part polymer coating renowned for chip proof and heat resistant qualities.
Note: They are not made to be put in a dishwasher or to be left covered in salt water or fish scales.
Q. What kind of guarantee do you give with your knives?
A. All of my knives are built to last a lifetime if they are treated with care. I have no control over natural handle materials; they can be subject to movement in certain climatic conditions. In such a case return the knife to me and I will repair the handle at little or no cost. I have however been able to source stabilised timber when available and have found it to be a popular choice of handle material.
Q. 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.
Q. What methods of payment do you use?
A.
Our international customers may prefer to pay us via Paypal. We also accept payments using Direct Debit. Please contact us for our account information should you prefer to pay using this method. We can also accept International Money Transfers via Western Union.
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.
Q. How much do your knives cost?
A.
My knives are priced very reasonably. I make steak knives for $200AUD each, my utility knives are priced from $260AUD then my Bowies start at $450AUD. Swords start at around $1000AUD. Fantasy knives and axes begin at $1000AUD and Daggers are $400AUD upwards. These are strictly my starting prices only and will change according to materials used, artwork and design. These prices do not include postage.
Q. Can you send the knife to me in the U.S./England/Japan/Botswana/etc.?
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.
Q. Do you make Automatic or Flick knives?
A.
No
Q. 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.
Q. 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 required.
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Q. 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 Australian Knifemakers Guild Show which is held in Melbourne on the first weekend in May. Later in the year, (usually mid August) we take the knives to the Pilbara region of Western Australia. 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.
Q. 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.