CHRIS REEVE, KNIFEMAKER

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CHRIS REEVE, KNIFEMAKER

Message par jcfiguet le Ven 13 Nov 2015 - 9:19

From the web site of Chris Reeve : http://chrisreeve.com/

Born in Durban, South Africa, Chris Reeve began his knife making career by chance.
Before being called up for a compulsory annual national service period in 1975, he
realized that one item missing from the standard army kit was a good all- purpose knife.
He was an impecunious apprentice at the time so he decided to make a knife for himself.

That first knife, filed entirely by hand was - as Chris himself says - of dubious design and
execution, but the seed had been sown. He came across an article in a Guns and Ammo
magazine about custom knife making and his interest was further piqued. He realized the
shortcomings of his first effort and experimented through a further six or seven knives,
each time refining design and technique. His training as a Tool and Die Maker gave
him excellent grounding in steels, their idiosyncrasies and suitablilities, and in the use of
machinery. Wherever he could find magazines on knives, he read them avidly, all the
time learning of the “greats” in American custom knife making.

It was during another three-month national service period, this time spent on the Angola/
Namibia border, that the One Piece Knife was born. Chris had designed and made for
himself a hidden tang knife with a wooden handle, inlaid with silver wire and it was
certainly the best looking knife in camp! However, the climate in Durban, where the
knife was made, is hot and humid while the Angola/ Namibia area is semi-desert. After
a few days in the dry air, the wooden handle had dried out and large cracks appeared.
This set Chris thinking about a knife that could be used indoors or out, in hot weather
or cold, in wet or dry - and which would remain impervious to all these conditions. The
idea of an all steel knife, made from a single bar, started to germinate but, at this time,
Chris’ spare time was fully accounted for by his other love, motorcycle racing, and he
was competing in the South African National Championships. It was only a year and
half later that he began researching the one piece concept in earnest and the first pieces
(the 7 inch bladed MK II) became available for sale early in 1983. Chris finally stopped
toolmaking and went into knife making full-time in January 1984. In order to improve
business opportunities, he chose to move to the United States in March 1989, settling in
Boise, Idaho.

It was initially for the One Piece Range that Chris had become known worldwide and
these knives are consistently exported to England, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Canada, Italy,
France, Germany and Australia. Then in 1987, Chris began experimenting with a
prototype folding knife that would complement the concept of the one piece knives.
In line with the “impervious to weather” idea, the folding knife would have a titanium
handle and stainless steel blade. Because Chris always strives for simplicity of design,
a great deal of thought went into the locking mechanism to ensure an efficient, well-
executed design that was aesthetically pleasing. Four years later, the Sebenza Integral
Lock© Folding Knife was available. The knife has been acclaimed as the strongest
folder on the market, and compliments from all sources have been abundant.

A perfectionist in his work, Chris continually strives to ensure that only the finest quality
work leaves the workshop and that the customer is completely happy with his purchase.
The growth in Chris Reeve Knives has caused Chris to learn skills in management
and business, production manufacturing and marketing. No longer the person who
physically makes the knives at Chris Reeve Knives, Chris now focuses his time on
design, research & development and production problem solving.

As a Custom Knifemaker, Chris has made a wide variety of one-off custom pieces.
These are always to his own design, although there is sometimes an influence - European
or Japanese. The knives range from folders with unique locking mechanisms to elegant
table cutlery. He is proud to call himself a cutler - maker of knives, forks and spoons.
He loves to use exotic materials, frequently inlaying gold, pearl or wood into titanium
or wooden handles to create an interesting contrast of color and texture. Because of his
African heritage, Chris learned to love the many indigenous African hardwoods and uses
them whenever he can. He learned much of his knowledge of wood from his father who,
even as a young man, began collecting stumps and root sections. Many of the pieces
Chris has used are considerably older than he is himself.

In his leisure time, Chris follows motor sports, rides on- and off-road motorcycles, reads
and enjoys the outdoors. Those few free weekends in the summer will usually find him
in the hills of Idaho, with his “shadow”, a Border Collie named Tombi!

Anne
April 2013
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jcfiguet
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Messages : 2148
Date d'inscription : 07/11/2015
Age : 56
Localisation : Vichy

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