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The Newbies Arena Are you new to knife making? Here is all the help you will need.

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Old 01-30-2013, 05:54 PM
Hempish Hempish is offline
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Location: Miles City,MT
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Talking What makes a Nessmuk a Nessmuk?

I have been looking for a new design to start my next blade with and keep coming back to the nessmuk. I do realize that a nessmuk is basically a skinner but is it a skinner with a drop point or what? I have seen about a dozen different styles of what claim to be a nessmuk and not sure in what direction to go in. They vary from true skinners to what look like almost choppers with a gut on them. I am really drawn to one style specifically done been Trollsky on youtube. Love that one. Any help advice or comments would be great. Thanks for your time. I do also know the back story on the nessmuk name just to save time.
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Old 01-30-2013, 06:19 PM
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rockhound rockhound is offline
Join Date: Jun 2012
Location: Winter Park, CO
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I'm a Nessy fan. I think that Jay Fisher sums it up very well:

From Jay Fisher's site:
"Upswept Drop Point (Nessmuk)

The upswept drop point looks just like the description sounds. the blade is generally upswept like a trailing point knife, which leads to a good belly shape in the blade which is great for skinning and field dressing chores. Instead of a fine point at the trailing tip, the point is dropped down, rounded over, or canted toward the axis of the blade. This creates a much stronger point than the trailing point, which is much easier to sheath.

There seems to be quite a bit of confusion about the origins, name, and description of this blade style, which is frequently called "Nessmuk." Nessmuk was the pen name of George Washington Sears, a sports writer for Forest and Stream magazine in the 1880s. He took the pen name from a Native American friend he knew as a young child. He wrote "Woodcraft and Camping" after canoeing and camping extensively in the Adirondacks in 1884. Mr. Sears had a lot of experience with knives, not only with camping, but three years on a whaling vessel. Mr. Sears preferred very thin knives, because these are useable knives. He carried an axe for chopping, and a small folding knife for lighter chores.

It's clear that Mr. Sears did not design or develop this style of blade. Knives found in the hands of the Plains Indians were made by Lamson and Goodnow (the oldest cutlery company in the United States) as butcher knives are remarkably similar to the Nessmuk style. If the blade was repeatedly sharpened, then broken at the tip and rounded a bit, it appears as Sears' Nessmuk. History aside, the knife shape was popularized by Sears, and the name is neat, so it stuck."

Stay away from fast women and slow horses
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Old 01-30-2013, 07:31 PM
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NJStricker NJStricker is offline
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Here is the book by George Washington Sears (aka Nessmuk):

Page 8 shows an illustration of what was supposed to have been his knife. To me, the characteristics of a "Nessmuk" knife are the hump on the spine, the S-shape of the overall knife, lots of belly for skinning, and no guard. My avatar is a full tang version I did several years ago. If you want to be traditional, then an antler handled hidden tang is the way to go.
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Old 01-30-2013, 07:42 PM
Hempish Hempish is offline
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Thinking about may e damascuss or a 1080 series steel. Full tang with a fire maple or stabalized red wood lace handle. Not sure yet on the style yet short and lots of belly or a touch longer with a little leaner lines.
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advice, antler, art, axe, back, bee, blade, cutlery, design, fixed blade, folding, folding knife, full tang, guard, hidden, knife, knives, made, native american, nessmuk, sheath, skinning, tang

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