William Brand

The Sailor's Knife Soapbox

46 posts in this topic

Bit early but the Mary Rose book has some knives found in and around the wreck, they come in pointy and sheeps foot varietys with some fantastic carved wooded scabbards. Buggered if I can find any images online though. Pete Crossman of Crossman crafts used to have some on his site but I can't find it anymore.

theres a picture of one here:

wp8878c12c_0f.jpg

http://www.crossmancrafts.co.uk/knife%20and%20sheath.html

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This is the one I wear on my belt....

knife-1.jpg

And the top one is the friction folding knife I keep in my pocket. I took this picture of before I carved "PH" in the handle.

2Knives.jpg

The friction folders have hickory handles/scales, they are one piece, with a grove cut in them for the blade (the blades were made from high carbon steak knifes that I ground down). then sheet brass was formed around that, and the blade is riveted on (in?). The brass keeps the blade from cracking the handle and folding back on itself....

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i dont think you looked at any pictures of myself....or CJ especially....there arent many times that either of us dont have a marlinspike and knife on us.....though like mark, i at least, do tend to wear it around the weskit.......under my jacket........

Edited by Bos'n Cross

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i dont think you looked at any pictures of myself....or CJ especially....there arent many times that either of us dont have a marlinspike and knife on us.....though like mark, i at least, do tend to wear it around the weskit.......under my jacket........

No, I account for those sailors I know that always carry. Most of the events I looked at do not include the ones I frequent, since I only attend two really. At Fort de Chartres you can't throw a rock without hitting someone carrying a knife and anyone not carrying a knife at the Fort Taylor Pirate Invasion is backed up by a sailor carrying three.

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and here i was thinking i was special enough to be mentioned with cj and reggie ;)

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You make knives. That places you in a special category all your own.

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This topic has become helpful to me as I have been looking for a utilitarian PC knife. Daggers are easy but I just want a knife that I can work with. So far I have found a folder that dates to Valley Forge and a camp knife.

Folding Knife

Camp Knife

Edited by James Smythe

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indeed mr. cyphers mmmmaaakkkeess rigging knives, and that puts him above the rest.....especially sense i want his knife...lul......

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Bit early but the Mary Rose book has some knives found in and around the wreck, they come in pointy and sheeps foot varietys with some fantastic carved wooded scabbards. Buggered if I can find any images online though. Pete Crossman of Crossman crafts used to have some on his site but I can't find it anymore.

theres a picture of one here:

wp8878c12c_0f.jpg

http://www.crossmanc...d%20sheath.html

Pretty wee thing ent it? And the fella carrying it circa 1542 looked like....well a sailor

4538700441_8a01ef018c_z.jpg

From the Embarkation painting at Hampton Court Palace, short jacket slops/trews and a woolly hat.

Laguiole in France do a trad folder (Pliant) http://www.laguiole-...briques&rubr=27 and the custom (sur commande) have a spike option as well as a corkscrew.

And the trad Spanish in the penknife section of this site....well take a nose round there are some cracking blades and a lot that haven't changed design since the 17thC. http://www.aceros-de...star&pa=navajas

There's also some abject shite on there too, especially in the 're-enactment' section but the penknifes well worth a browes.

Me, in 18thC kit I carry a horn handled sheepsfoot folder made for me by the late John Buttifint a quiet and talented man andknife maker who I was proud to call friend. Sadly John circumed to bone cancer a few years ago now =o(

Edited by Grymm

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seems the reenactment world has lost a few of its master tradesmen over the last few years.

Are we allowed to own any of them penknife/folders in the Laguiole sites over here Grymm as they look like lock knives and I thought they were banned in the UK?

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Context is the key, they (press etc) scare you with banned banned banned but in kit at a show, unless the copper is a newbie, you 'should' be okay, Manchester city centre on a saturday night , apart from being seriously underarmed =o), not s'good.

You can own what you like, just don't carry unless you have a need. In mufti I nearly always have a swiss army on me, lanyarded to a belt loop or pocket lid . The main use has been trimming sticks or making crude bows for Small when we go play in the woods or boring a hole in his orange juice bottle so it can take a straw if he has happy meal in the Lair of the Beef Clown. Never had a prob but then I'm a bloke in my late 40's with my son. I'm guessing if I was 20 in a hoody flashing it round it'd be different.

Attitude is another key, got my first sheath knife aged 8 from me Granddad who spent half hour explaining how to look after it ,keep it clean and sharp etc and another half hour explaining EXACTLY how far he was going to thrash my skinny white arse if he ever caught me or found out that I was misusing it (threatening people, torturing animals, taking it to school etc) and I knew he would! So our little gang never did, we made bows and flint tipped arrows and shot them t each other, same with spears but never even thought about using a knife as anything but a tool.

Bugger that turned into a rant dint it =o/ As you were, nowt to see here , carry on.

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ahhh being in my early 40s we had evolved to making crossbows in my kids gang lol (well apart from my little side business of selling home made nunchucks at high school)

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I found something that supports William's assertion about knives and even provides a little bit of insight into a sailor's knife and where he kept it. It's from James Yonge's book Currus Triumphalis, é Terebinthô.

"I was sent for to a Dutch Seaman,

__

who being gotten drunk, threw himself into his Cabbin with all his Cloaths on: it unluckily fell out, that he had in his Pocket a sharp-pointed Knife, such as they usually carry, and that it lay in so ill a posture, that the weight of his body forced the point through sheath and cloaths, and run up above three inches (entring about the middle of the Thigh) obiquely towards his buttocks, so that the point might be an inch and half directly in from the skin, under which it lay..." (Yonge, p. 72-3)

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A sharp-pointed knife as the usually carry? That's interesting.

When I decided to head toward history and away from Hollywood, I first bought linen, and then bought a hudson bay-style knife. Luckily I already had a hat.

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I've always been a big promoter of the 'Sailor's knife' for kit and I'm seeing less and less of them. I see so many grande cutlasses, and often a brace or whole baldric of pistols, but almost never a good sailor's knife. Why does a tool so common to the working day of any sailor continue to be so absent in kit? Is it simply a 'sash and flash' before all else?

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Here here! I am a blade monger my own self and carry three on a daily basis in the modern world, each with it's own function. You will see me with no less than two blades with any kit I sport for events. One of those I carry daily in all aspects of my life, whether eventing or working, or just relaxing at the homestead is a custom made little utility knife from a Green River "Ripper" blade. Makes an excellent all-around knife for all purposes. I eat with it, field dress game, cut rope, craft leather, etc. I am never without it.

Bo

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My uncle was a lonely, bitter fellow that bought things to fill the hole in his life. He shut everyone out and just holed up in his house. When he died, the whole family was invited in to pick out something to take home and cherish. Something to give life to. I found a beautiful folding knife in the original box in the top drawer of his dresser. It looked as though it had never been used. I began whittling with it almost at once and I use it all of the time. I only wish he'd been a happier fellow and I always think of him when I whittle.

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my french trade knife has taken on a nice patina in the time I've had it. Love it and take it to all events!

mP

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Cold Steele be making a fine 1917 cutlass...

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Here's an excellent article on clasp (folding) knifes.

http://woodsrunnersdiary.blogspot.com/2013/02/more-on-clasp-knives.html

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