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Beginner Collectors

Just started collecting? Want a place to learn and ask questions about our hobby? No dumb questions here. Seasoned iKC collectors provide direction and help with basic questions

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Collecting is one of the most enjoyable hobbies. It brings years of satisfaction and provides for great friendships.

If you are relatively new to knife collecting- you are faced with thousands of choices. There are more knives out there than we have the money to buy, so which way do you go?

There are a number of factors and decisions that go into building a collection and our goal with this iKC Group is to help you sort though those choices.

Almost every collector started out by grabbing whatever we liked, almost without rhyme or reason. While this is one way to start off, it can be extremely expensive. Most collectors eventually settle-in at some point and focus on a type of knife, a maker, a pattern or particular use.

It's OK to buy what you like, but determining WHY you like knives and your goal for your collection are the most important questions you can answer for yourself as early as possible. And before we go much further here.

Our group here is to help you think this through.

Discussion Forum

Collecting Ethnographic & Aboriginal Knives

Started by Lars Ray. Last reply by Jan Carter Mar 18, 2015. 14 Replies

Ethnographic and Aboriginal knives – at one time I could hardly spell these terms let alone understand what they meant. The title itself is enough to turn away crowds at any self-respecting knife…Continue

Knife Collection Genres

Started by Lars Ray. Last reply by Lars Ray Mar 17, 2015. 27 Replies

Have a simple discussion with another collector and one topic is always bound to occur - someone will ask, "what do you collect?" Sometimes the answer is simple - Folders or Fixed blades. Spend more…Continue

Tags: a, Collection, Staring, Genres, Collecting

Buyer beware!

Started by Steve Scheuerman (Manx). Last reply by Tobias Gibson May 16, 2017. 16 Replies

I just wanted to stress to everyone to do your homework on your purchases before you buy them. Knock offs are everywhere, and everyone stands at risk of this diabolical practice. My son and I were…Continue

Tags: offs, knock, counterfeits

A video Introduction to collecting Traditional Pattern Knives

Started by Tobias Gibson. Last reply by Andy Larrison May 20, 2017. 7 Replies

I've been doing a series of you tube videos on Traditional Pattern Knives.  The videos are being made with the novice knife collector in mind.  I will be adding them to my page and to this thread. …Continue

A look at China Made Knives

Started by Bobby Horn. Last reply by Tobias Gibson Jun 25, 2014. 6 Replies

With all the negative discussion about Chinese-made knives, I wanted to add my two cents based on actual experience, not rumors and second hand information. I am comparing my three newest knives-…Continue

How sharp ?

Started by Bobby Horn. Last reply by Brian Martin Sep 6, 2013. 1 Reply

When I get a used knife I like to take it to a decent edge. What criteria do you use. Slice paper, shave hair, others? Sorry my microscope is broken and I am too old to eyeball edge :)

Definition of a "slip joint knife"?

Started by Charles Sample. Last reply by D ale Mar 11, 2016. 3 Replies

Until recently I had never heard the term "slip joint knife".  At first I thought it must be a type of knife that opened differently than a standard pocket knife.  From my own research I think I have…Continue

Deciding on a type of knife to collect

Started by Mel Jones. Last reply by Jan Carter Mar 15, 2015. 14 Replies

I have collected knives, not seriously, for many years, but now I would like to create a collection that can be added to on a regular basis and that has some semblance of meaning to me.  I am…Continue

Why is this knife worth $2500

Started by Ira Landsman. Last reply by Jan Carter Jan 22, 2015. 14 Replies

I am a new collector. I follow ebay to gain an understanding of the cost of knives. I was blown away by this one.…Continue

new to knife collecting; no idea what this is...

Started by Michael Forbes. Last reply by Shlomo ben Maved Mar 11, 2016. 9 Replies

Found this at my grandfathers old house and it seems to have some sort of value. Older with what appears to be some form of middle-eastern writing. thanks for the help. …Continue

How Do I Label my Knives?

Started by Jim Child. Last reply by Ricky L McConnell Nov 25, 2013. 5 Replies

Okay! Trying to be organized I've set up a database in HanDBase (synchs between my laptop and my Droid smartphone) and every knife has been assigned "a number."That's all good and well but now I need…Continue

Knife Steels

Started by Patrick Tetangco. Last reply by Alexander Noot Aug 28, 2014. 3 Replies

What is the best all around knife steel? Something robust but also stainless. How good is ZDP 189 & M4?How is the rust resistance of D2?Continue

Tags: steel, 189, ZDP, D2, M4

Knife Maintenance Gear

Started by kage. Last reply by Mel Jones Jan 2, 2012. 14 Replies

At some point in time as your collection grows, you may find the need to maintain your knives, in order to keep them sharp, functioning and to preserve their potential value.  As a beginning…Continue

Tags: User, Maintenance, Knives, Gear, Collector

Plastic or antler/bone? Can you tell by sight?

Started by Andrew P. Last reply by dead_left_knife_guy Jan 23, 2015. 8 Replies

I have a Solingen "big n little" set (I'll have to figure out the picture thing here shortly) that I have been told has Sambar Stag scales.I know the hot needle trick to discern plastic handgun…Continue

Counterfeit Knives ( What you need to know)

Started by Alan Stevens. Last reply by Alan Stevens Dec 27, 2009. 1 Reply

Ok all knife collectors have purchased a fake or counterfeit knife at one time or another it simply goes with the territory. Unfortunately most Counterfeits are purchased by beginner collectors who…Continue

Tags: knives, counterfeit

Ever cut yourself playing with your knife - while it is still in your pocket?

Started by Scott King. Last reply by Ricky Messerle Feb 25, 2010. 11 Replies

I don't know about you but lately I have found myself playing with my knife- while it's still in my pocket. I'll be talking to someone and find myself opening and closing the blade..I like the…Continue

Undefined Area's of collecting:

Started by James Sosa. Last reply by Chris Pittman Dec 5, 2010. 3 Replies

Ok, I'm looking for some info on what makes knives tick. Our collection depends on:1 - Looks, (is it pretty, does it have nice lines, is the style up to date or antique?), you can add more to this…Continue

Tell us where you find your knives

Started by Scott King. Last reply by Bobby Horn Jul 17, 2013. 21 Replies

When we're first getting started into buying knives, whether to use or collect, it can be a trial and error kind of thing. Let's help each other out here and save us all some heart-ache and $$ by…Continue

Tags: buy, purchase

best knife for the dollar

Started by duncan lemp. Last reply by björn thompson Mar 5, 2012. 13 Replies

Personaly ( im a kid and a beginer so ask sesoned people for the best answer) i like the byrd line ( yes B Y R D) from spyderco. I havent seen one but ive heard that the spyderco tenacius is good.I…Continue

What quality knives did you get when you first started collecting

Started by Michael B. Last reply by Bobby Horn Jul 17, 2013. 18 Replies

What quality knives did you get when you first started collecting did you keep buying the cheap ones o did you jump right to the expensive ones

Tags: quality, beginners, price

Comment Wall

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You need to be a member of Beginner Collectors to add comments!

Comment by Jan Carter on December 29, 2012 at 20:56

Some great ideas for what to look for in your quest for what to collect (or not)

Comment by Blazing Blade on September 27, 2012 at 13:43

Thank you my Friend stephen ,

1082 or 1095 Steel for Damascus I use to make my blades for durability of the blade..

Comment by stephen tungate on September 27, 2012 at 12:03

this is a knife that a good friend donnie carter made for me.it is made with 440c steel and buffalo handle it fits the hand great and looks great to....

Comment by stephen tungate on September 27, 2012 at 11:59

Comment by stephen tungate on September 27, 2012 at 11:54

nice job blazing what kind of steel is used in the damascus you use..

Comment by Blazing Blade on September 27, 2012 at 9:45

Comment by Jan Carter on September 26, 2011 at 18:15
That is why older stag has such a mellow and rich color to it.  My safe queens have done the same thing Shlomo
Comment by Shlomo ben Maved on September 25, 2011 at 1:33

Stag, antler will overtime darken (yellow) just like ivory does just from the pollutants in the air.

I have walrus, Narwhal and elephant handled knifes that after fifty, sixty years of being safe queens (due to CITES restriction) are now a lovely deep, golden yellow...They were seldom handled except for the yearly oiling and polish.

Comment by Jan Carter on September 24, 2011 at 15:02

Generally if cattle bone is used, scored and burned it will be called burnt stag.  As Shlomo mentioned a reputable company will use that term or another variable of it to disclose that it is not a "genuine" stag item.   

Is there a Case dealer near you?  You can find the nearest dealer here...http://www.wrcase.com/dealer/locator.php


Comment by Tobias Gibson on September 24, 2011 at 13:40

I asked Steve Koontz of SMKW and he answered this in the Knives Live show.  He confirmed thatr Case has been using the same type of stag probably from the beginning. 


I know laws have changed on how it can be harvested but beyond that Stag (or Antler comes from either Sambar (Rusa unicolor) and or the India Red Deer (Cervus elaphus)  These deer  are used because they produce a heck of a lot antler material  Sambar Deer are raised in Florida.  There has always been debate on the quality of farmed raised stag vs. wild stag.  In reality, the quality of the stag may vary from one year to the next based more on the diet and health of the deer as opposed to the farm raised or wild.

Steve mentioned that unused stag will mellow over the years but not actually darken.   That siad, I assume that if the stag is used and handled a lot, the oil from your hands and other elements may affect its color.


Finally, the dyes used to color stag have also changed over the years due to economics and legislation.  For instance the dye used to make black was recently changed due to legislation and making  red dye has also changed many times due to cost and legislation.


As for second cut stag, this is stag cut from the interior area of the antler and then jigged to resemble the outside.  It is normally considered inferior to first cut stag.

As mentioned, originally cattle bone was jigged and burned to resemble stag when the price went sky-high or stag was short. 


While Stag bone is still sometimes produced, bone has come into its own and is often left smooth or jigged in countless patterns.  While less expensive than stag, there are some collectors who prefer bone.



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