Lum Inspired Dress Fixed Utility

Discussion in 'Custom & Handmade Knives' started by Mike157, Jul 31, 2020.

  1. Mike157

    Mike157 Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 29, 2006
    Hi All,

    I had the pleasure of visiting Matt Gregory, earlier this year, pre-pandemic. The plan was for me show up with a knife design and make it entirely by my own hand. Matt, of course, would be there every step of the way to demonstrate techniques, give moral support, and show a good load of patience. Matt, I must say, is an excellent teacher and mentor. I also enjoyed the hospitality of and visiting with Matt's partner, Jill. And as always, enjoyed the company and snow trail forestry hikes with their four legged boy, Brokk.

    I've always liked the simple and, to me, clean look of a full tang knife with scales recessed from the spine's edge. As are many, I'm also a fan of the late Bob Lum's knives. And, when appropriate, a bit of polished steel. This design features some of Mr. Lum's influence, the recessed scales, and a bit of polish.

    Though I might have liked to have a slightly more tanto-ish tip, we both agreed that it might be pushing it for time we had and my skill level. I will also note that I let the grinder get away from me slightly, couple of times, so there were one or two modified "features".

    The steel used was CPM-154, and came from Niagara Specialty Metals (NSM). They are located not far from Matt's place, and were gracious enough to give us nicely detailed tour which we enjoyed greatly. Good friend and talented knife maker, Chris Adelhardt, joined us for the morning hike with Brokk in the forestry and the visit to NSM. Matt surface ground the bar of steel before I arrived, to save us some time. I believe the the project took a solid 40 hours, which gave us one day to play, and me a day to travel on either end. I showed up at Matt's house with card stock template in hand. We transferred it to a more sturdy piece of cardboard and got to work. This blade had a thorough heat treat, including subzero quench and appropriate tempering.

    The spine and clip are mirror polished. The flats are hand sanded past, and then back to 1000 grit. The bevel is belt ground to 800 grit. The scales are polished ironwood and include four hidden stainless pins. The blade is 5" from tip to plunge and the knife is 10" overall.

    Paul Long created the wonderful, lined, sash carry, sharkskin sheath. Thank you, once again, my friend.

    And, as is obvious, Coop, created the magical presentation. Thank you, Coop. Always appreciated.

    A big thanks to Matt, Jill, and Brokk, for putting up with me for a week.

    Thanks all, for taking a look. Mike

    Last edited: Aug 1, 2020
    Travis_Wright, 954Ink, Mecha and 18 others like this.
  2. seanj

    seanj Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 1, 2010
    Mike157 likes this.
  3. Lorien

    Lorien KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Dec 5, 2005
    nice work, Mike:thumbsup::cool:
    Dawkind and Mike157 like this.
  4. Bigfattyt

    Bigfattyt Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 23, 2007
    Very nice!!
    Dawkind and Mike157 like this.

    R APPLEBY KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Mar 11, 2003
    Simple, elegant and beautiful, well done:thumbsup::thumbsup:
    Dawkind and Mike157 like this.
  6. john april

    john april KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Feb 27, 2006
    looks fantastic ! well done.
    Dawkind and Mike157 like this.
  7. Matthew Gregory

    Matthew Gregory Chief Executive in charge of Entertainment

    Jan 12, 2005
    That was a good time! I can provide a little more of the back story, through photos...

    Mike flew into Buffalo to be met with a blizzard warning.



    Luck had it that we didn't actually have blizzard conditions, but the drive to the airport and back had it's unique Western New York "lake effect" moments, that's for sure.

    As Mike already mentioned, I'd previously swung over to Niagara Specialty Metals ( @nsm ) to pick up a piece of Crucible CPM-154 for the project, and prepped it for Mike's knife to save a bit of time. Mike had laid out a sweet profile, and we discussed the finer details and goals for it, and got started.






    Once the knife was cut out and profiled, the work rests were eliminated from the equation. Everything from this point forward was done freehand.


    While we waited for the blade to go through the heat treating cycle, cryo, and temper, we took a field trip back up to @nsm to tour the mill, joined this time by Chris Adelhardt of Pariah Knives. They had just taken delivery of a new bandsaw, which positively dwarfed all their previous saws:


    ....also, several forced marches:


    Then, back to the grind. Lots and lots of hand sanding:


    Profiling out handle scales from a gorgeous piece of desert ironwood:


    Then shaping:



    Mike worked like an animal on this project. We finished just in time - came right down to the wire. No detail was left unaddressed. Absolute dedication to do the best he could on every point, and chased out every flaw and scratch until it was DONE. When it was finally over, we tried to backtrack through the week and put an actual 'hands-on' time to the event, and as best as we could figure it, we just exceeded 40 hours. That's real time working on it, not counting heat treatment time, temper cycles, etc. Not once did he take a shortcut, and many of the processes aren't as obvious as you may think.

    Great having Mike up here. Always makes for high adventure, good food, and great conversation. Glad to call him my friend, and it was a pleasure being able to facilitate the making of this 'dream knife'.
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2020
    woodysone, Mecha, Steven65 and 6 others like this.
  8. mb>

    mb> Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 24, 2014
    Love it. :thumbsup: It was great to see you finally put a maker’s mark on some steel Mike! Matt must be a heckuva teacher, not to take away from you of course. ;)
    woodysone, Dawkind and Mike157 like this.
  9. JParanee

    JParanee Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 23, 2006
    Great stuff my friend
    woodysone, Dawkind and Mike157 like this.
  10. Richard338

    Richard338 Gold Member Gold Member

    May 3, 2005
    You are doing well when 40 hours produces something worth sending to Coop!
    woodysone and Mike157 like this.
  11. betzner

    betzner CenCal Coast Platinum Member

    Jan 23, 2007
    Mike, that looks good enough to buy, actually! Nice work!
    woodysone and Dawkind like this.
  12. Korean Hog

    Korean Hog Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 12, 2017
    Great looking blade and sheath! Everything is so clean and crisp :thumbsup:
    woodysone and Mike157 like this.
  13. Mike157

    Mike157 Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 29, 2006
    Thank you, each of you, for the nice comments. It is appreciated. Thanks to Matt for filling in more details of the visit and process. It was a fair amount of work, but every minute was enjoyed. The morning hikes and the visit with the great folks at Niagara really made the trip a treasure to be remembered. Mike
    woodysone and Dawkind like this.
  14. Steven65

    Steven65 Traditional Hog Platinum Member

    Mar 11, 2008
    Awesome knife, brilliant thread. Matt is the man!:)
    woodysone and Mike157 like this.
  15. Dawkind

    Dawkind Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Apr 3, 2000
    That's fantastic!!!! I'm very happy that you were able to put up with Matt for so long and remain calm and collected.....great job!!! :D
    woodysone, mb> and Mike157 like this.
  16. Mecha

    Mecha Titanium Bladesmith Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Dec 27, 2013
    Very nice. I notice the radius around the periphery looks perfectly consistent. That must have taken some time and attention!
    Mike157 and woodysone like this.
  17. SharpByCoop

    SharpByCoop Enjoying the discussions Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 8, 2001
    I love this story and this build. All I knew from arrival was that MIKE had done the work. It was meticulous, in it's finish and simplicity in design.

    I gave it MY best. Mike deserves it.

    How about that Paul Long! He can elevate any piece and he interpreted this need perfecto.

    Matt, someday me. No mentor better. I have a forged (by me) and rough-ground fixed blade. I need tutoring. I can make it in 5 hours.... :)

    Mike: Thank YOU! (Wait till they see your other acquisitions!)
    Mike157 and woodysone like this.
  18. Mike157

    Mike157 Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 29, 2006
    Thanks again all. Always appreciate the comments, good, or otherwise. And yep, I think that Matt’s shop is a “scratch free zone”. There will be hand sanding, down to 4 x 10 to 198th.

    Thanks, Coop. You are really too kind. I would agree about your assessments of Paul and Matt’s work though.

    Dudley, it’s a trade off. Jill makes some really great desserts and is good company. It helps one forget about all the misery in the dungeon.:p Mike

Share This Page