Friday, May 15, 2009

Waveless CQC14 Framelock

Seen here is yet another Emerson CQC14 framelock conversion done by me to beef up this great model that comes from the factory as a thinner liner lock. Once again I've incorporated my replacement for the factory floating stop pin that sometimes has been reported to rattle by some end line users on their factory knives. I've seen more than a couple now with wads of paper on either side of the floating stop pins to keep the rattle from being a nuisance to them. I came up with this idea to try to give those mailing me their knives with notes complaining about this issue a solution to both make them quiet and less annoying but also to give them a convenient way to adjust the stop themselves manually now and again.

This is just one of a couple different ways I thought of for eliminating the rattle noise which apparently can be annoying according to some owners of these style of folders. I have owned a couple that rattled some myself but I can't say any of them were quite as bad as some I have handled from others but I do get the question of how to prevent it or what solutions I know of now and then.

Some have asked me if there is an advantage to the free floating stop pin also and as I hinted at above, the answer I give them is yes, there would be a perceived benefit for the way the stop pin spins by not being secured. It usually can move around on its own but not all are as lose as others are and some require a physical twist by the user to move them to the point the blade slams down on it in a different spot instead of the same one every time. Stay with me tho because the truth of the matter is the pin is often times nearly the same hardness as the blade and in some instances actually harder depending on the blade steel used so wear or indenting is nil and its debatable if the lock wear or lock over travel differences seen after use can be attributed to any indenting of the harder stop pins. Some do appear softer in hardness though and generally speaking I think they are probably a little stronger if not the same hardness as the blade. 

If and when there is wear or indenting on the stop where the blade hits it, it usually takes years to develop. This is not to say that a visible mark takes years to develop. Those marks happen quite soon after the folder begins seeing use. Marks and indenting however, are two different things.

Its quite easy to spin your own fixed stop pin from time to time which is recommended and done on many knives incorporating fixed stop pins and also its done on many pins placed just as the factory Emerson pins are, only tighter fitting so they are not free to move so well on their own but instead are almost fixed in place by how tight they fit compared to the Emersons which spin easily and usually on their own so no manual adjustment is necessary. Many makers and manufacturers incorporate non secured pins held in place by pivot screw tension for the blade adjustment but only a few rattle. Even with Emersons I've only handled a few that had an audible report attributed to the stop pin.

Some owners have written me and told me that they find a tactical folder that rattles to be counter productive. Others are just annoyed by the sound as I said earlier. So I came up with a simple solution easily incorporated into the design. Some makers cut a half moon shape into their blades with their mill or by design when its cut out by a water jet or laser service. This half moon shape or half a hole shape from a drill bit is done to make the blade wear on a larger surface area for both the pin and blade so it wears longer and more evenly. If you spin the pin now and then before problems occur, in my experience the pins are rarely a problem for indenting. I have only seen it a handful of times in all the time I've worked on knives where a pin was damaged. Its a much less frequent occurrence to see indenting in my experience than it is to see knives without the stop pin because it was lost. This from falling out of the folder when being used or carried which has happend on many occasions.

I've replaced several lost stop pins for end line users over the years from all manner and make of knives made this way, some quite recently. The pivot screw tension is what keeps these pins from falling out. If the pin in your folder happens to be just a bit out of tolerance and shorter than it should be or the tolerances are off in all of them from one batch the company had made up and then installed in their products and you are someone that lets your pivot screw get lose to where the blade develops too much side to side blade play it can be a recipe for a lost stop pin so its best to adjust that screw for the blade now and then to check it for proper tension on knives with free floating pins. I get a lot of Emerson and other knives mailed to me each year and have noted on more than a few of the Emersons mailed to me for other work that many of them do have lateral (side to side) blade play when they arrive here. When I've asked about this the owners of the knives have reported that the knife simply Waves easier that way.

The Wave is a hook built into the blade to catch the corner of the pocket as the knife is pulled out to use it. You can see an example of the Wave hook in the next folder down for jobs I've done because its still on that blade compared to this model shown here which the owner modified. So if you have a lose pivot screw which equals blade play, and a lose pin for the stop, especially if your pin is just a bit out of tolerance and shorter than maybe it should have been to where it rattles even when things are tight, you may be an accident waiting to happen so check your knives.

Another way I've done stop pins is to use a barrel fixed in place but equipped with a hardened stainless steel sleeve that freely spins around the stainless barrel which takes care of the situation quite nicely and doesn't rattle at all. Columbia River Knife and Tool did this on their S2 model frame lock folders and its worked for me on my own with that knife flawlessly for many years now. The way I do these stop replacement pins as shown here on these Emerson folders in this set of pictures and other Emerson models is simple. I cut the barrel to exacting measurements to fit so that the screws on each end can be super tightened down but not squeeze in on the folder body changing the pivot action of the blade. They simply tighten down and then squeeze the barrel as tight as I can make them after applying blue loctite.

The stop pin barrel I'm putting on these folders is actually still quite easy to spin the way I do them because even though the screws are tightened down, the pin fits just enough to sit flush on each side and is not undersized at all. As a result, the barrel readily turns by simply sticking a Phillips screwdriver in the head of the visible black phillips screw on the outside of the frame on the lock side and moving it clockwise just a half turn or so to allow the blade to bump a different spot on the pin. Just do this every now and again and its all it takes. Its also quite possible that it moves on its own over time and in all liklihood it does move on its own since its technically still free enough to do that but still tight enough so it will not rattlle or move side to side. Contrary to popular opinon you can have the best of both worlds here and my little rattle eliminator proves it nicely. Under the G10 scale is a torx button head screw that fits in the recess already put in the underside of every Emerson G10 scale on all their knives. So between that and the phillips head the barrel is not going anywhere in these models I'm rebuilding and upgrading even if the owner of the knife does let the blade develop some lateral movement to make it Wave opened easier.

I've done this one as usual with no permanent modifications to the original factory parts even though the blade had been modified previously by the original owner. Even with the Wave removed from the blade and the blade polished and finished very well as you can see, I made no changes to anything I did so other than the modified blade it can and will go right back together just as it arrived here and just as the factory built it. Original stop, old lock side liner and the G10 scale are all in a baggy to be stored safely away.

This Waveless Emerson weighs in at 5.7 ounces after my slab conversion of the lock side, up from 4.9 ounces before I installed the new lock I built for it.

Thanks for looking.



Anonymous said...

I really appreciate what you're doing for our community. You're providing a much needed service. My stop pin rattles, and I really like your solution. Great blog, awesome pics!

STR said...

Thanks for your compliments on my blog and work. I appreciate it.


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july said...

yo dawg....awesome postss ......kongratssssss...

do check'n mine if u have time.....