Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Custom Low Rider Pocket Clips:


Pocket view. Note how the knife disappears in the pocket. This answers the question of why folks want a low rider. My clip is less noticed due to difference in 'foot print' size also. 
STR Low Rider mounted

Factory clip set up 

Superimposed view of my clip over the factory clip for this model
Close up of STR Low Rider

Side view STR Low Rider

Jan, 2016.  JYD II, Leek, Southard by Spyderco, Military and Para Military original and Para 2 low riders available until the bags of blanks found are gone.  Keep in mind the Para 2 pattern does fit on other knives as well, such as the Delica 4 and others. I still do the mini titanium pry bars but max two per order per person per day please.  The rest here is for nostalgia only. Thanks  The clips or pry either or are $35 each via check or money order and 40 each for the first via pay pal and each additional is $35 each after that. Thanks pay pal me here http://paypal.me/StephenRice  Contact me at STR@bladeforums.com

One of the things I used to get asked to do more than anything else is to make one of my custom low rider pocket clips fit a favorite everyday carry knife for a customer. This is one of the few things I do involving production folders anymore and something I will always do at least as long as I can or as long as customers want them from me.. As many of those following my work know, I used to do quite a bit of modification work on production folders and repair work for some manufacturers as shown here in my blog in past posts. Most all of those production knife jobs have been discontinued by me with the exception of my custom pocket clips.  I am a pocket clip fan and I enjoy making these for folks when it involves knives already equipped with a pocket clip and I offer something to fit. (edit: with the exception of the Buck 110/112/55/501/503 series knives and some older Gerber Sportsman models and the clip and thumb stud conversions which I have started doing again on those.) see here: Buck 110 conversions
see here for Gerber: Gerber Sportsman Thumb Stud and Clip conversion

Some models such as the Spyderco Military, the Kershaw Leek, or Junk Yard Dog II folder (shown) and the Benchmade Mini and full size Griptilian folders are frequent requests that come my way for fold over or also known as 'low rider style' pocket clips.

One of the other things that has come up is confusion for what I do exactly. I do not manufacture as in mass produce pocket clips. I custom fit them to fit an exact mount for a specific spot so they fit, that is so they bury the knife or come as close to doing so as I can make it. If you want a generic one size for all this is not what I do. So even tho you may have a pattern, say a Emerson folder clip and you think that is all I need well, I need more. I specifically fit it to your folder. So if my folder has the clip mounted in a different spot further away from the end of the handle than yours, which it undoubtedly will if its a different model, then the clip won't fit. It must be made to fit by folding in a different spot than I would for my own model. Therefore it is customized to fit the knife you carry not mine. So my clip I build for you may not transfer to another model and fit correctly or as well even tho it mounts. It may off hang on another model and if tip down carry on some it can interfere with blade opening if it was made for tip up carry or it might not bury that one like it did the one I made it to fit even if the clip hole pattern is the same. On most knives the hole spacing is the same from tip up to tip down but if you note, on most the distance is different from the end of the handle in tip up vs down. This mean the clip I make you is for the most part what you would term 'location specific' for the knife and position it was made to mount.

Also, tension may be different from smooth models vs grippy ones so I tend to take that into account to fit it also. If you want the clip to fit the knife so it buries it and its custom made within the parameters of what will work to your specs I'm your guy. If not and generic will do well, they are available also but why? I mean the entire point is to hide it right? Or make it less noticed so why buy one that won't do that? I should say to conceal better what you carry the clip can be custom fit to bury that knife down even if it means covering over the lanyard hole because that is less important to you than lowering the knife in your pocket. Say you carry a big knife and you don't want it so obvious its big. So we make the clip smallish. That way if someone does see it, it doesn't look like big knife in your pocket based on that little clip. I also make replacement clips for knives no longer made that you may own that you lost a clip for. At times manufacturer reps have referred customers to me for this for knives they sold the customer but they no longer manufacture. That is what I do, what you are paying for and hopefully what you wanted also. In addition color coordinated clips can be done to match slacks and jeans at work and this kind of thing. You can find convenient color choices to go over using the side arrows right and click the Feb 2011 post and scroll down once open.

For most of these above models I can make a clip without the need for having the knife shipped to me because I have some of my own folders in these same models which can be used to make pocket clips for others. Many knives in the industry use the same clip pattern. On some if can identify the pattern for the hole placement I may already have what I need. If someone owns something other than these knives I may need the knife in question to do the pocket clip. It depends on several things I need to know. Sometimes it helps to see pictures of a knife in question and from all sides to decide if one of my clips is a possibility. Pictures can tell me a lot usually so if you have some of your knife or a link to your knife model that helps me to determine if we can proceed or not on a pocket clip project. Also when I don't own the model knife that you own or keep up with it there have been changes made to them I was unaware of and by the manufacturer. In the industry we call these, "running changes" and they can easily sneak up on me and quite honestly I don't like it anymore than the customer when I make something for a knife I've been doing jobs for for some time and find that something is different on new year models but it happens.

This can happen when I own or the model or if I don't own the model and the company changes screw size or handle built and stuff like that I have no way of knowing until I run into it or read about it just like you so when these issues come up. They also change handles and often if I set tension for what I think is a frame lock well, its too tight for a textured handle so I like to know what you actually own not just the model. There are variances as you all know so these all play into proper fit for a clip.

This JYDII folder here was set up to take one of my custom fit low rider pocket clips made from .045 thick titanium. I normally use .040 for most clips for factory knives. This so all screws fit universally. Otherwise I would have to supply screws and the variance in lengths alone make that impossible let alone metric or standard among other size related issues such as threading. I use the same knife maker grade of titanium for my clips as I do for my knives tho so its the best I can offer you.  You can see the side shots for both factory and upgrade to my clip as well as the difference in look and fit from one to the other. I try whenever possible to use the factory pre-threaded holes already in the knives. In the event I have to drill and thread new holes for mounting the clip somewhere other than the factory mountings I would need the knife. (please note this is no longer offered as something I'll take commissions on as I only work with factory drilled holes now and no longer modify knives at all) T

Anyway, this has been something I've been wanting to do ever since this customer of mine sent me these pictures and posted them on my forum to show what the before and after for one of my low rider or fold over style pocket clips did for his Kershaw knife. As you can see from the pocket shot the knife buries deep and completely disappears with one of my clips. This is not always the case as some models won't allow me to make the clip such that it can go clear to the end of the knife to do the fold over due to their specific design but no matter it is still better for how it sits than a factory set up. Sometimes its necessary to weave the stem of the clip between the lanyard hole and a button lock or some other mechanism which forces me to stop the clip short of going to the end. At other times if it looks like the fold over would overhang off the spine I am forced to fold it over before it would overhang to keep the clip as invisible in the hand as possible. So in these cases I cannot bury a knife as deep as one may envision but usually its pretty close.

Some customers elect to have me anodize their clip a color, usually khaki or brown, or perhaps blue jean blue to allow the clip to blend with slacks a little better in the work place giving their carry knife somewhat of an urban camo thing going on. Some customers that carry larger knives prefer to have a smaller than factory clip made to fit their knife. This gives the illusion that the knife they carry is much smaller than it really is. So occasionally I'll get an order for an almost "pen" looking pocket clip rather than one as large as that shown. Most frequent is stone wash or tumbled finishes and I can also etch the clip which gives it a very similar if not identical look to being blasted, particularly if it was tumbled first which most are unless specifically ordered otherwise.

If you navigate my blogger a bit using the menu to the right you can find older posts I did on my low rider clips also, both in May and August of 2010. However, if it interests you further you can see still more of my work in my forum at http://www.bladeforums.com/forums/forumdisplay.php?f=810 in the makers section. Once on my forum, just find the pinned posts at the top pf the page somewhere with the other pinned posts there titled "Low Rider Clip Picture thread" or "The Picture Thread" and you can see more. Both of these threads and the other pinned posts are always there on page one somewhere at the top of the page on my forum so they'll always be easy to find in the event you want to see a picture again or see what new pictures have been added. Lastly, if you need or want to get in touch with me about how to get one of my clips simply email me at STR@bladeforums.com

Thanks for stopping by my blogger.

Monday, October 4, 2010

V Grind Hammer Forged White Steel Kiridashi Liner Lock In Textured Green G10

What can I say. I liked the folder like this one that I did for my sister so much I decided I had to have one for myself. :-)
Same specs just slightly thicker G10 and a V grind blade instead of the one side grind model. I equipped mine with a pocket clip for right hand tip up carry and used black screws for the clip since I'm out of the shiny ones. Mine weighs more than the one for my sis which is the orange one right below this green one I did for myself. As shown this one weighs in at 3.5 ounces.
Just a reminder to those of you new to my blogger, drag your mouse on any picture and click on it through out my blog and you can bring it up to full size. 
Thanks for looking.


Sunday, October 3, 2010

Hunter Orange Left Handed Japanese White Steel Kiridashi Folder

My sister said to me that she really liked the Kiridashi I did for a customer when she saw it over on my Face Book account. She hinted that she'd like to have one for her birthday, 'to match her kitchen knives' but I know she really just wants it because its by her big brother. :-)

Anyway, being that she is a south paw (lefty) I figured it would be a good excuse to use this right hand grind blade since the smooth side of the blade is on the correct side to roll along on the detent ball in the lock. I assume most viewing here know that these style of folding knives have little ball bearings in the locks. These aid smoothness in the action and keep the blade tip down during carry preventing the blade from opening by gravity. I learned doing the V grind model and some past ones that the ball can feel somewhat grainy for a time if you don't do this so to me it was the perfect match up to have this blade laying around and a project it fit right into. This actually turned out quite well and it answered a question I had in my mind as to if I could make this blade work in my BUSSTR folder platform as well as my He-Man folder model which I did earlier for some folks and posted on other pages.

This is my first liner lock using one of these Japanese White Steel blades.
I can't say exactly what it is this hammer forged look does for me but I sure do like it! Its a bit of a challenge to make a differentially hardened blade work in any integral style folder design but when you do get it I must say its pretty dang nice. I used textured hunter orange G10 on this one and its .080 thick so it made for a light weight thin folder. The liners are .070 titanium on this one and the weight is 2.9 ounces. Its 4 and 5/8" closed and sports 3.125" of blade length when opened. The grind is right handed as I said on this one but that just means my left handed sis can experience what the rest of the world has been experiencing with Emerson knives and other chisel grind knives for years. I have a hunch she'll like it. Happy B-day Sis!

Thanks for looking.


Friday, October 1, 2010

Sod BUSSTR Frame Lock

EDIT: I want to add right here at the top since it has been mentioned by some that on the 3rd of Oct. 2010 Howard Viele contacted me after I reached out to him on Facebook where we are both friends. In his contact he granted me permission to do his trademarked three hole pattern on the 8 blades and pocket clips I have like the one shown in this post. Thanks Howard. 
As a youth I always loved my CASE Sod Buster folders. As some of you guys that read here often know I have been making this BUSSTR folder for some time now offering both a liner and frame lock version of it with the frame lock being made from the 'Tac Ti' sheets of textured titanium I get from Tracy at USA knife maker supply. The only difference between this here model and my original is that the original usually had a clip point blade in it like all those shown here in my blog in older posts. For a change of pace I thought it was time to use one of these Soddie blades to see what it would come out like. This here is the first one using one of these blades. SOD Busters are such great knives in the field. They are so good for small game and food prep jobs that its hard not to like them if you are any kind of an outdoorsman at all. 
When my friend Dave at Great Lakes Waterjet suggested I do a Sod Buster blade shape in my BUSSTR folder I wondered to myself why I didn't think of that myself because I loved the idea and as a youth I carried one for  quite a few years going through high school. In my home town back in West Virginia where I grew up the schools still close for the first week of deer season to this day! It makes sense if you knew the area though cause there wouldn't be any teachers to teach school anyhow since they'd all be huntin! :-)  So, you can see why such a portable butcher shop blade like this would be a great friend to a guy like me growing up in the hills where we depended on the meat we bagged each year. I realize these days that you young whipper snappers skip school to go to the video game stores but in my day we skipped to go huntin'. Such was life where I grew up. 
Anyway, with my friend Dave's help I got my blades to use in the SOD Buster shape. Dave cut these patterns out for me from my sheets of 12C27 stainless steel and after I got em back I went to work and Peters Heat treat service did up the blades for me to 60 Rockwell hardness. Shown here are some of the recent folders I've done along side this here new one utilizing one of my Sod Buster blades. Each of these other folders shown with my Soddie is described in other posts. 
If you want to read up on those others just scroll down some and you'll find em. They are all 12C27 for the time being. Come later on I'll have some in S30V and D2 as well as the old stand by ATS34 again but for now I'm using up that 12C27 Sandvik steel and folks seem to be liking that a lot so I figure I'll be sticking with that as long as the feedback remains this positive. You know on paper this stuff is not all that impressive but there is something about it that just flat out works and folks like it! I must admit its won me over about as well as my customers. The stuff is great! 

Oh yeah. The blade on this here textured titanium model folder is 3 and 1/4" and the closed length is 4 and 11/16". Its a tad heavier due to the grind and the fact that the body is 1/8" longer than my Clip point BUSSTR. This one weighs 3.7 ounces. As you can see from looking the slab thickness on this model is just over 1/8" at .135 thickness 6Al-4V titanium for each side. The spacer/stand off in the rear is G10 pinned with 1/8" stainless barrels and T-8 torx screws. The pivot is a 3/16" 416 stainless that takes a T-15 torx driver to tighten or loosen and the pocket clip, also made by me is a .045 titanium mounted with 2-56 screws for T6 torx. As usual thanks for looking and stopping by my little neck of the woods. 

I've added two pictures of this that are winter shots. You can tell because the greenery is gone in the background. These show the new hand rubbed finish and scandi grind once it was completed. The first shots shown are still work in progress pics before the blade and edge were finished out. Just FYI. 


Thursday, September 30, 2010

BUSSTR Frame Lock Bead Blasted

When I came up with this folder some time ago I decided after doing several runs of them in liner locks that I wanted to do some frame locks in this pattern also. I wanted to do some blades of my own in thicker stock than the original BUSSTR models using those thin blades from Ragweed Forge. This is one of those blades. I selected 12C27 steel for the blade and had it heat treated by Peters Heat Treat Service.  This is a fine shape for field work too and with the sturdy frame built in .135" titanium slabs with some texturing for making it grippy its the cats meow for an outdoor everyday carry knife. This blade has a nice hollow grind on it and is ready for some work.

This folder weighs in at 3.5 ounces, is 4 and 9/16" closed and sports a 3 and 1/4" blade length open and fancy threaded stand off spacers in the rear to gap it just right. This piece runs $350 and is sold. Thanks Zeke and thanks to all for stopping by to visit my blogger.  


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

One Off Pocket Clips

Every now and then I get asked to do a custom pocket clip application for a folder. Most of these are your everyday run of the mill jobs like just remaking an original pocket clip design for a production folder. In a lot of cases its one that is no longer made by the company they bought it from so when the owner of knife loses or breaks the original clip and needs a new one they'll touch base with me or someone that is also capable of doing it and get one that way to replace the one that broke. Some of the companies like Spyderco and Kershaw as well as a few others have told the customers about me letting them know where to look to get in touch with me. Thats pretty cool actually but anyway, these are kind of unique as opposed to others I do so I thought I'd post em up.

In this case the owner of these knives, both of which are fairly nice production folders, wanted specific needs met for his knives and included some hand drawings of his ideas to give me something to go by. I have some margin for artistic license on most of these and even though thats the case I try real hard to make them as they owners imagine. These came out pretty good I think.

Anyway, thanks for looking.


He-Man Wharny in 12C27

Seen here is the newest one up. This is the last one of the He-Man folders I had on the agenda to get knocked out. Last pic shows what I have left of all I've built lately. Both hunters and both Japanese White steel models are gone and this here Wharncliffe model is for my son who wanted to get one of my knives for his future father in law. This one has a screw down stop pin as opposed to a shoulder type pin and the spacers are plain type straight forward designs instead of milled out on a lathe. Like the others its just over 3" for blade length, about 3 ounces for weight and between 4 and a 1/4" to 4 and 3/8" closed. I bead blasted the entire thing, blade and all and I installed one of my low rider clips on this one. It will be on the way to my son, Brandon here shortly.

Thanks for looking.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

He-Man Hunter and He-Man Hawkbill

Two more in my spurt of knife making just up. I actually have a third one I did as well but its needing some adjustment on the contact before it will be ready so I just stuck with the two completed. Once more these are the same pattern with various blade shapes I've come up with to fit into the same handle shape. I tend to like more traditional straight forward designs as opposed to all the fancy smancy curves and grip grooves. To me a straight forward more "Puukko" type handle is more versatile in a multitude of grips making the knife about as easy to use flipped on its side as it is upside down or right side up.

Anyway, this handle appealed to me years ago when I saw a drawing my good friend Dirk Potgieter had done and at first the model I made was similar to the one he did but as things progressed little by little I eventually modified it so much that it is hard to tell its the same general pattern anymore. Hence the He-Man name sake. This one is a very similar knife to the one I used to call my "Ouparator" with some slight improvements to it in how I build it.

The He-Man name comes from the lock which is pretty stout on most of these because all my He Man models come in .095 thickness titanium with very shallow lock cuts to spring the locks or none at all depending on what is ordered. Its a very stout lock and something certainly not for everyone but the trade off is a knife that can be carried without a pocket clip or worry of hyper extending the lock out the wrong way when closing it. It requires a lot of ummmph and a lever to make the bend in this lock so there is no way a thumb is going to change the memory of one once its set believe me. I've got a stout thumb and I can't cause the lock to lose spring memory with my thumb on purpose let alone by accident! :-)

There are other trade offs also. One is it may take a bit more to close one of these locks with no lock cut to spring it easier but the benefit of that is it won't close by accident on you when you have to focus your attention on one to make it close when you want it to. The other is that the lock has so much spring to it that you are not going to be sitting around opening and closing one of these all day like some kind of a knife worry stone nervous habit. I mean you can try but likely it will flat wear your thumb out so its the kind of knife you open when you need it and you use it and put it away. 

Anyway, these again both weigh close to 3 ounces each. Both are 12C27 blade steel heat treated to 60 Rockwell by Peters Heat Treat Service. They are 4 and 1/4" long closed, with slightly over 3 " blade lengths open. The pics say it all as they both stand on some logs out back together. I did both of these once again in the same .095 thickness titanium slab handles and neither one of these has a lock cut in the lock. The locks are solid just like they come and they are some stout locks. Not for everyone I know but for someone wanting a totally unique lock unlike any you'll fine anywhere else well, you are looking at it.

I'm starting to see a pattern here with hunters. It appears that they like carrying deep without pocket clips. You probably noticed that this hunter model, just like the last does not have a clip. The hawkbill however, did get one of my custom made ti low rider clips on it for right hand tip up carry.

The Hawkbill folder shown here is available yet. $250 Correction: This one is SOLD
Thanks for looking. Been a busy few days for me. I'm taking a break. :-)