Thursday, January 30, 2020

Knifemaker Feature: Part 2

This week, the work of two bladesmiths have come to our attention, and we have again chosen to share their stories with you. 
***Ulysse Robert
"I'm a trained watchmaker/jeweller who developed an interest for knives over the years. I currently work in a small workshop in the province of Quebec (Canada) making various types of knives and tools.

Like watchmaking, bladesmithing is a field where one never stops learning. I like making knives that challenge me in both design and construction as much as possible. I also find great satisfaction in taking raw materials and combining them together to create not only a functional tool, but an object of beauty.

Recently, I had the opportunity of combining my passion for horology and bladesmithing by creating custom watchmaker's case openers. They are all made individually from my own damascus steel following the watchmaker's specifications.

My favourite type of knives are the ones that I know will be used by the customer, from a large kitchen knife to a small folding knife. Knowing that one of my blades will be used and cherished by its owner for many years to come is what makes me happy at the end of the day. "

Instagram: @ulysserobertknives
***Trevor McDonough
"I began making custom knives in November 2013 while in high school. I wanted my father’s Christmas present to be special that year so I came up with the idea of making him a knife for when we would go camping and fishing. I never had the intention of making knives to sell but quickly it would become my full time job.

I began with almost zero knowledge of making a knife other than it had to be hardened somehow and be sharp. After over 60 hours of work and dozens of hours of research, I had completed my father’s knife with its rough shape, filed bevels, rudimentary heat treat, and crude Osage orange wood scales. While labouring on this piece I fell in love with the process of taking a piece of steel and turning it into something beautiful and useful.

I quickly began reaching out to other knife makers and tried to soak up as much knowledge as I possibly could. Being so young and so enthusiastic about the process of making a knife these other makers were excited to share their tips and tricks of making a quality knife with me. I was also fortunate enough to live close to Rob Thomas, a world class Damascus smith who took me under his wing and taught me how to forge a quality steel. I began investing all of my money into new machines and spent most of my days designing with dreams of making a folder.

I finished my first folder in July 2014 and since then have created several other models that have opened up new knowledge and trials for me. One of my favourite and best knives I have made to this day has a san mai blade that Rob Thomas and myself forged with a thunderstorm Kevlar micarta overlay on the show scale and for the back spacer. Trying new materials, styles, and fine tuning details to perfection is now my passion and I am extremely grateful to everyone who has supported me and helped me make this dream a reality."


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