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Pre-Conclusion Observations
Posted By Bruce McCrory
Date Friday, 8 April 2022, at 2:02 p.m.

Bruce McCrory
With Bill's tomato soup puke (rust on O1) sample being the most recent post, I thought this would be a good time to put down some of my impressions from searching for a simple non-stainless blade steel on a new pocket knife. I will just jump in...

First, I need to distinguish my "pocket knife" from the current offerings. Mine usually have multiple blades, at least two, and they fit unobtrusively in jeans pockets. Puting one of mine in a sheath will be very weird. A penknife might be a better definition, but that implies it dangles from the keychain. I like mine to be under 2 ounces.

My pocket knife has no ulterior motive for knocking down rabid deer, or rabid Rambos. However, I do gut and clean stream caught trout.

1. Lies- Amazon is the preeminent marketer of Chinese junk and lies couched in language translation disability. Western hosts of the manufacturing gimmicks carry the fabrications further.

Ebay parrots the same flaws and introduces counterfeits. I saw a Buck made in Pakistan. The new (online) retail store with no physical door and display makes that fraud far easier to foist onto neophytes. As a Buck owner of one of the first 110s, I can't understand how someone would make the mistake. It's all reality.

What's "carbon steel"? At Boker it's defined as non-stainless (traditional steel). I guess it doesn't rust either. Both Ebay and Amazon advertise 1095 Stainless steel. The only explanation I can find for misidentified steel is search tag lies.

2. Fit and Finish- I believe ownership of a pocket knife now means non-usable. Show only. A few years back I spent an inordinate amount of time fettling two Oar Carvers made by Queen. They were my introduction to no quality control. One still can't be opened without a pair of pliers. The new samples I have exhibit the similar symptoms. Viciously sharp corners are cradled in the palm of one's hand. Jigged bone--whatever that is--is often more sharp corners.

3. Obfuscation- This trait of marketers is closely aligned with point 1. Lies. However, it requires an inductive leap of reason by the observer. This observation also allows a clean revelation about Buck and their 420-HC (Bos tempered) steel. I believe Buck is uniquely 100% made in USA. It is also very proud of its stainless steel. However, I am not looking for a Buck knife. [So few pocket knives?]

So far, "made in China" implies cheaper than Western (home) manufacture. Sometimes, substantially less expense. That manufacture distinction can easily (and is) snuffed out. Like the steel, lies (obfuscation) scream cheap material with no identification.

Why isn't 1095 used in construction? It's just about the cheapest steel out there. My only logical guess is that customers want stainless bling. But let's look at stainless and what steels are used in blade material. Not in detail; no way.

Stainless includes the cheapest and costliest steels. There are gobs of those steels. Just think about the possibilities. A $5 stainless steel can sit in for one costing $50, and more. Remember the Buck made in Pakistan?

4. Summary- I fully expect to start a box of pocket knives like Bill, should I persist in finding a good user. I haven't even mentioned shape and handing comfort. As others will mention, I can get a good sticker on a stick sold for woodworking. But that's the problem, I will rue the moment it's dropped into my pocket.

Ps. Buck fell into Chinese hell. They have several cheap knockoffs. No source stamp that I can find.

 

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