Prices of knives. A few thoughts

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Prices of knives. A few thoughts

Postby marthinus » Fri Nov 12, 2010 4:46 pm

I spend a lot of time discussing knives on international forums and local ones and it seems that many of our local guys think that you can still get a GREAT knife with the latest steel and good fit and finish at or less then R150.

I would like to share a thought. Recently I started carrying an old Carl Schlieper as pictured (probably 30 years old since it was handed down to me).


I was at a work busy finishing supper around the fire for clients when I pulled my slipjoint from my pocket to cut a piece of meat and a client saw the knife and was right next to me starting to talk knives and saying he bought a great knife for R150. I inspected the knife and gave it back to him, it was a cheap Chinese made knife with many flaws (probably scammed by someone at the flea market).

Now imagine his surprise when I told him that this old knife I have that cost 5 chillings (grandfather paid that much for his) costs about R400 today. It has minor flaws but it is still hammer forged by the original company. He said I was mad. The discussion then went on to cars and he drove one of those fancy Mercedes worth probably more then most peoples houses and I asked him why does he drive Mercedes. He said quality and it got me thinking.

Why would someone spend thousands of rands on a good car, a great bow, a great camera, spend the extra time in picking out his arrows and camo clothing.....but skimp on a knife!!! A knife is the most basic of tools that can help you in a life or death situation or help to fend of an attack from a lion.

A decent knife can be found for about R200-R300 yes. Look at Victorinox. A great example for quality and affordability but the knives that cost more then R1000 and upwards costs that much because it has better steel alloy qualities, fit and finish.

What cost 5 chillings in 1950 that was considered a normal pocket knife costs R400 today. For the same quality made by the same family.

Please. Dont skimp on your knife. Buy quality and you will only buy once.............unless you are like me and go nutters when I see knives!
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Postby nomad » Mon Nov 15, 2010 9:09 am

Well said!!
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Re: Prices of knives. A few thoughts

Postby Brad » Thu Dec 09, 2010 2:33 pm

marthinus wrote:............unless you are like me and go nutters when I see knives!

:) It's a problem! I wouldn't say i know knives but the money iv spent on my knives have been well worth it! And will definitly last a life time!!!

AKA Bowlee cuzzins with Bruce lee :)
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Postby Super Sakkie » Wed Dec 15, 2010 2:19 pm

I couldnt agree more with what Martinus said. Its amazing to see what people will waste huge amounts of money on, but when it comes to a knife, any old piece of junk bought from the corner cafe or street vendor is good enough for them. And the fact that they will actually show it off to their friends is proof of how little they know about knives.

I am a firm believer that the broader public needs to up the ante when it comes to their standards of what constitues proper cutlery.
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Postby Zeus » Thu Jan 13, 2011 3:28 pm

Sorry - I am on adding my 2cents now
a Knfie is a life time investment , its not something you buy and sell
and quality shows in the end and the moment you start making your own knifes then you really appreciate the effort and hours that goes into it
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Postby Desert Rat » Thu Aug 11, 2011 10:26 am

I have just started making knives as a hobby and when a person asked me the other day what I would sell a fixed blade hunter for (one I made) I said around R800....he seemed shocked and said he could buy a Muela or Buck for less than that. I couldn't argue as I know you can buy them cheaper. ....but that is just one of millions of the same. I believe a knife is a very personal thing. I think the knives that one owns tells a bit about the type of person the owner is. I believe a knife should be something special and when I one day make a knife for an individual it should be his design with minimal input from me. He should know the care and passion put into making that special knife for him and realise that it is absolutely unique, that there is no other like it in the world. Then he will appreciate the R800 he paid was not actually nothing at all and that his knife is 1000x better than any "cheapo" he can buy.
Dont get me wrong there are some awesome knives commercially available and at reasonable to hugely expensive...but there is just something about a handmade, custom knife that puts it in a class of its own. Anyway that is my 2c worth...
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