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Ed Caffrey's Workshop Talk to Ed Caffrey ... The Montana Bladesmith! Tips, tricks and more from an ABS Mastersmith.

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Old 12-10-2013, 04:48 PM
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J. Doyle J. Doyle is offline
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Location: Gladwin, MI
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J. Doyle, M.S. Jon Christensen and Cooper Firearms of Montana team up...

This project has been a long time in the works.

Early this past summer, I got a call from Cooper Firearms of Montana. They are a rifle manufacturing company located just up the road from where I used to live. They make rifles from standard “stock” models all the way up to full on “custom”.

They pitched me an idea of making a run of custom rifles with matching hunting knives to sell together in a very nice high end set that would include a custom rifle, matching knife with a handle made of the actual same piece of wood as the stock of the rifle, a custom leather sling for the rifle and sheath for the knife all in a nice display box.

I was all in on the idea. They wanted to do an initial small run as a test to debut at the SHOT show in Vegas. I sat down with the fine folks at Cooper and we discussed and came up with a prototype idea. I was asked to make a trailing point (upswept tip) hunter for them. I made the prototype and they were happy with it.

They wanted to see some other interpretations of their ideas and asked me if I knew any other knifemakers who would be a good fit for this project. I, without hesitation, thought of my good friend and mentor, M.S. Jon Christensen, who lives basically right across the street from Cooper’s office and facility. I gave them some other names as well but they decided Jon was the right fit for the other half of this project.

Jon met with the Cooper executives also and came up with a prototype knife which they also loved. It was decided that Jon would make half the knives for the initial run out of his own Damascus and I would make the other half of the knives for the initial run with a mono steel blade using the clay quench process to create a hamon, an idea they also liked.

We are still discussing a final number of these knives in the run but it looks like there will be at least 5 from each of us. The Cooper Company has done an AMAZING job finding some truly incredible wood blanks for their stocks and the knife handles. There is not a knifemaker among us who wouldn’t love to cut them all up for knifehandles. The people at Cooper are REALLY great people and are wonderful to deal with. Their quality firearms are among the best out there and Jon and I are proud to team up with them on this.

So here is my first production knife in the series:

Handforged from 1075 steel, clay quenched and etched
8" overall, 3 5/8" tip to guard
Heavily rounded spine and ricasso edge for comfort
German silver guard
German silver and blued and coined spacers
Feather Claro (I think) Walnut from Cooper's own private stockpile
Inlaid German silver engraving coin on the butt end for Cooper to engrave their company logo

All comments and discussion welcome.

Here is the first knife of Jon's.
Jon's own mosaic damascus steel (this blade has MASSIVE chatoyance)
8" overall, 3 5/8" blade
Coarse layer twist damascus guard with 416 ss spacers
Coarse layer twist damascus spacer and buttcap
Walnut handle
Checkering and engraving by Cooper Firearms

If Cooper provides the pictures of the guns with the knives, I'll post them too. Thanks for looking.

John Doyle

You have nothing to fear but fear itself...........and bears.

Last edited by J. Doyle; 12-10-2013 at 07:41 PM.
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Old 12-10-2013, 07:14 PM
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C Craft C Craft is offline
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Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: N.W. Florida
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Darn it, now I got to dry the drool off of my keyboard!

Mr. Doyle I love your knife and the other from Mr. Cooper ain't no slouch either!

I for one would love to see the pics of the match-up on the knives to the rifles!

C Craft Customs
With every custom knife I build I try to accomplish three things. I want that knife to look so good you just have to pick it up, feel so good in your hand you can't wait to try it, and once you use it, you never want to put it down !
If I capture those three factors in each knife I build, I am assured the knife will become a piece that is used and treasured by its owner!

C Craft
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Old 12-11-2013, 01:20 AM
cdent cdent is offline
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Location: aiea, hi
Posts: 786
Thanks for showing the project John. Great knives, great rifle maker.

Hope you can get some update pictures, Craig
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Old 12-11-2013, 07:27 AM
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miketheknife miketheknife is offline
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Location: High Point, NC
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This is knife porn!

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Old 12-11-2013, 10:19 AM
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racjarrett88 racjarrett88 is offline
Join Date: May 2013
Location: robbinsville, NC
Posts: 474
Darnit who wants to buy one of my kidneys? I'm a gun and knife nut and this is the best Idea ever. Seriously who needs a kidney?
Beautiful knives

Austin Colvin
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Old 12-17-2013, 05:55 PM
timekeeper timekeeper is offline
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Good for the both of you. Glad your hard work is being recognized and utilized in such a fashion.
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Old 10-25-2014, 07:45 AM
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Ed Caffrey Ed Caffrey is offline
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Congrats John and Jon!!! It's always very cool when knifemakers get to team up! Introducing priemium custom knives into other areas is good for everyone.

Awesome knives from Awesome makers (and just GOOD people!)

"Nobody cares what you know.....until they know you care."
See me at table 2Q at the Blade Show!
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Old 10-25-2014, 11:07 AM
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Andrew Garrett Andrew Garrett is offline
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Fantastic work sir! Be sure to post more pics of the whole package.

Andy Garrett
Charter Member - Kansas Custom Knifemaker's Association

"Drawing your knife from its sheath and using it in the presence of others should be an event complete with oos, ahhs, and questions."
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