Knee to Knee and Toe to Toe”

What is the true value of this “knife collecting passion” to any of us? Knife collecting to your friends is viewed the same as mine view it. No doubt, raising the eyebrows of the “un-enlightened”. Only those that do…. Know It! It’s like a “biker” says, “if I have to explain … you’d never understand”.

I spoke of the “devaluing of my portfolio” – First, “Frank! It’s a ‘collection’ not a bunch of printouts or once-a-month reports that come in the mail.” (That you use to look forward to seeing) NO! It is a collection of items some with intrinsic value some with monetary value. Jeff Todd and Samuel T. Smith made well presented thoughts to the questions put out there Samuel answered the technical and Jeff sparked the emotional for he ended his comments by “whatever is fun”.

I was thinking through the weekend what is real the value of the collection I have made and Mr. Sabol has done with Michael Sabol and his son.

Frank! It’s not about the money!

For it’s the intrinsic value of a knife that grabs us all from the start. It’s an emotional connection however made, from an uncle, or from a gift, or from a find that throws us over-the-edge and we begin to collect then we find ourselves. “Collectors” not portfolio managers. Sure, we all hope to have the collections we read about being auctioned today. Sure I hate to see any knife I bought sell for less than I paid for it.

But what keeps us in this game has nothing to do with money…. It’s the “Uncle” Jeff had pass the knife to him, it’s the quirky find of a rare knife at a flea-market… or with me, what hooked me big time was buying a few bags of old, rusted, decomposing knives confiscated from passengers shortly after 9/11.

I was fortunate enough to get three bags of dilapidated knives, stored for 8 years, in the lockers of the security at Columbia SC Airport after 9/11. They were an oddly mixed group of knives. That oddly mixed grouping led me to want to know more about the manufactures and the “pedigree” of them all. More, what stuck with me the most were the old knives that you knew someone “carried” that they gave up in those few days after the tragedy.

They’re were Robeson, Russell, Imperial, and Remington, Schrade, Boker, Russell, Colonial, Utica, Imperial, United, Ulster (the first Old Timers) and many others all I a rusty, wet, pile of metal. In fact, you could tell a fork-truck had backed over parts of one bag. But it was a unique find… as much for the variety as for the significance.

But as a collector few, if any of these knives met the definitions of collectability… For all were pop-marked, rusted out, blades missing on and on but they were all individual’s “carry” knives. Personal belongings…. Sharpened till there was little blade to just abused and missing blades but all were given up at a time our Country was facing in my lifetime an attack on homeland soil.

“But if there’s not a collector value to them – then Frank where does your overt concern about demission values arrive….?”

Well it fled with the realization of this…

The value of my collection has nothing to do with dollars and all to do with the knives and their conduit of connection between my son and me. For my son Kell and I cleaned and stroked and cleaned and de-rusted most all of these knives. And through the process, we both learned a lot about all knives but about each other too. He knows a clip from a sheep’s-foot, a liner from a spring, a bone from a Delrin and a stockman from a Jack. He’s the only 8 year I’ve met that knows what a bolster is and that most are nickel-silver.

As Mr. Sabol will surely attest to it’s the time, the quality of time spent with Michal that is the true value of his collection. And, Kell, my son… He may not buy another knife when I’m gone the intrinsic value to him will always be far more than the $ forever.

I heard one say one time, “How does a child spell Love?” The answer was T-I-M-E. “Knee to knee and toe to toe – TIME”.


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Tags: Children, Knives, collecting, collection, value

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Comment by Ricky L McConnell on January 21, 2014 at 22:57

I too enjoyed reading this older blog Ken, It makes me feel better about collecting knives.

Comment by Ken Spielvogel on August 7, 2013 at 21:39

This is an older Blog but I enjoyed reading it.

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