View Full Version : Arkansas Custom Knife Show

02-12-2001, 07:14 PM
I went to the show this last Saturday and saw a lot of wonderful pieces and met a lot of wonderful folks. I had to leave after just about 3 hours because my party got tired and wanted to go home.

Ron Newton took top honors with "Best of Show" and another award..."Best Damascus"...I know, I know, it was a long shot! :)

Tim Foster took honors in "Best Bowie". Another long shot.

Zaza Revishvili won "Best Art Knife". From what I saw, these were museum pieces.

Don Hansen III won "Best Folder".

Here is a snapshot of the awardees ( with their plaques (except for Zaza). lr: Tim Foster, Ron Newton, Don Hansen III. Apologies to Don for the bad angle.

I spent time talking with Larry Connelley, John Fitch, Corbin Newcomb, Jim Walker, Cliff Polk, Cliff Parker, Stan McKiernan, Dusty Moulton, Mike Williams, Jerry McClure, and the amazingly young Chris Bowles.

Knives that I saw that I really liked were a small liner-lock folder by Cliff Parker ( with blue mammoth ivory, blue jeweled and filed titanium liners, blue sapphire encrusted thumb stud, and damascus blade and bolster. Wow...(sorry for the picture...I was moving.)

Chris Bowles had a very nice small bowie ( with forged O-1 and hidden tang walnut handle. He had made it look very primitive with a nice patina on the blade and copper wedged guard and rawhide wrap on the fore of the walnut. It was VERY light. Very nice.

Tim Foster had the knife that won "Best Damascus" at BladeShow 2000 ( I'm glad I got to see it.

One of Zaza's knives ( had a beautiful silver and jewel encrusted handle, but it was not the blade that won the award. Zaza also had this dagger ( of equal quality and embellishment. He is from Russia.

The famous Ron Newton ( was hawking was ALL sold. He sold out before 10:00am except for the couple he had in competition. This is what his knives looked like: SOLD! (

BIG John Fitch ( had some great knives...most already out of my reach...unless I sell my computer. BTW, great guy to talk to.

Jim Walker ( is also one nice guy. In fact, I didn't find anybody that wasn't easy to talk to. Good folks.

Spent about 15 minutes talking to Corbin Newcomb ( He gave me an application for the Hammer-in this spring. I'll be there.

Finally, I visited with James Poplin of Pop's knives ( in the supply room...another very nice place to visit. I never get out of that room without at least one piece of ironwood!

Jeff Jenness

02-12-2001, 09:35 PM
Hey Jeff,
Thanks for the pics. The Arkansas show is a good one alright.

It was good to hear from you. If you want some more info on the Hammer-In or the school just let me know. In fact, if you're going up there by yourself and you don't know anyone, you can hang with me. It's gonna be a good one.

The Spring Hammer-In will be Bill Moran's last time to teach any classes, so if you want to meet him, this is the time to go.

02-13-2001, 01:46 AM
Im planning on attending the spring hammer in, do you know the topics yet?
I am also planning on taking intro to bladesmithing this summer, can you recomend any places to stay that are fairly cheap?


Mike Garner


I love this forum! Its such a big help for us newbies!
Thanks again

02-13-2001, 06:56 AM
I don't know what's on the schedule yet. It's always good though. Regarding accomodations, I always stay at the Best Western Inn, in Hope. It's on highway 4, which is also the highway that the school is on. So when I get up on Staurday morning, I just pull out of the parking lot, drive 8 miles north, and park.

Here's some of the places to stay. The dollar signs signify most expensive to least expensive. In all cases, be sure to mention that you are attending the bladesmithing classes to get special rates.

Holiday Inn Express
Hope, Arkansas
(870) 722-6262

Best Western Inn
Hope, Arkansas
(870) 777-9222

Super Eight Motel
Hope, Arkansas
(870) 777-8601

Quality Inn of Hope
Hope, Arkansas
(870) 777-0777

1914 School/Bunkhouse
Washington, Arkansas
(870) 983-2684

Jason G Howell
02-13-2001, 07:33 AM
Don Hansen III won best of folder. Sorry I missed you.

02-13-2001, 08:37 AM
Terry, I'll meet you there at the Hammer-in. I will try to get a room at the Best Western. Sounds like this is about the best time to go since this is Moran's last time.

Jason, thanks for the input. I sure wished I'd been able to hang around and get pictures of the winning knives.


02-13-2001, 03:41 PM
Cliff Parker is doing some amazing stuff with damascus, especially powdered damascus. He doesn't like to do the same thing twice, so he is always pushing the envelope with his steel.

If you ever get an opportunity to see Zaza's silver filligree work in person, it is exquisite. No one comes close to what he does.

02-13-2001, 07:43 PM
Hey Dogman, I talked with Cliff a good while...was he pulling my leg when he said he just started in 1996? I didn't believe him...his knives were too well done. But he insisted that it was the truth. If I only had the $1150 for that little folder I might have it in my pocket right now (but I have 5 other mouths to feed). You wouldn't have believed how beautiful that knife was...the picture I took is terrible...and I kicked myself all weekend because I didn't get a good picture of it. He said he had packed the knife to several shows and hasn't sold it yet. If I wasn't so poor he would have Saturday!

Speaking of his powder Damascus, he pulled out a little 1" square piece he called his "Buddy". It looked like a cartoon dog. He said he has about a pound of it he made on a dare. Funny guy.


Jason G Howell
02-15-2001, 07:05 PM
1996 sounds about right on Cliff. Fun guy isn't he? His flowers and butterflies were great. Did you see Don Hansen's bugs? pics are going to be good, but the straight (and not-so-straight) laminates and mosaic work are still going to be the mainstay... What do you think?

02-16-2001, 06:13 AM
Cliff is pretty much a hippie knifemaker. He did start in 1996.