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"Tribal" in hand-engraved 440C high chromium stainless steel blade, hand-engraved 304 stainless steel bolsters, Pilbara Picasso Jasper gemstone handle, sheath of hand-carved, hand-dyed leather shoulder, stand of 304 stainless steel, American black walnut, mesquite, lauan hardwoods, engraved black lacquered brass
"Tribal"

Sargon

"Sargon" obverse side view in CPM154CM high molybdenum stainless steel blade, hand-engraved 304 stainless steel bolsters, Fossilized Stromatolite Algae gemstone handle, Frog skin inlaid in hand-carved leather sheath
"Sargon" obverse side handle detail. Three pairs of stainless steel bolsters are finely hand-engraved, gemstone fossil handle is striking, hard, and glassy
Sargon
  • Size: Length overall: 12.875" (32.7 cm), Blade Length: 7.5" (19.1 cm), Thickness: .183" (4.7 mm)
  • Weight: Knife: 15.5 oz. (439 grams) Sheath: 8.5 oz. (241 grams)
  • Blade: CPM154CM Powder Metal Technology High Molybdenum Stainless Tool Steel, Hardened and Tempered to 59HRC
  • Bolsters, Fittings: 304 Austenitic Stainless Steel, mirror finished, hand-engraved
  • Handle: Fossilized Stromatolite Algae Gemstone
  • Sheath: Hand-carved, Hand-dyed Leather Shoulder Inlaid with Frog Skin
  • Knife: The Sargon is named for an ancient Assyrian king, and this bold and striking knife pattern is an evolution of my early "Prairie Falcon" design. The Prairie Falcon is a great design for collection, investment, and tactical combat use, so I enlarged the pattern, added some graceful transitions, and created a magnum version I named Sargon. The Sargon blade is made in CPM154CM, an particularly corrosion resistant stainless tool steel. This is an exotic, highly refined tool steel with what is perhaps the most beautiful finish possible on mirror polished blades, with no grain pattern whatever. This steel is a powder metal technology steel, formed as a powder and fused under tremendous heat to create a billet that as a high density of alloy elements that have a very even distribution, yielding one of the finest ultra-modern tool steel blades. I hardened and tempered the knife to 59 Rockwell for a very durable and wear-resistant hardness, with the additional extreme toughness that this particular steel offers. The blade had to keep the feather-like profile and gently curved edge of the smaller Falcon, and I added a two-thirds length top swage to reduce point profile without sacrificing strength for the devastating sharp tip. The blade grind is well-matched and radiused at the terminations, with even lead-offs and a very crisp set of lines. I completely fileworked the knife around the fully tapered tang with a punctuated vine pattern and the deep choil doubles as a terminal area for a nice bit of recurve at the cutting edge, enhancing the elegant shape. The knife is bolstered with high nickel, high chromium 304 austenitic stainless steel, mirror polished, and hand-engraved with a curvaceous interlocking pattern that is reflected in the curves of the knife shape and the inlays and carving in the sheath. This same pattern is artistically reflective of the microbial algae that formed the fossil handle millions of years ago (read below). The Sargon has three sets of bolsters, one central bolster reinforcing the forefinger groove with deep quillons all around. The rear of the handle has a nice set of curves and belly and with the well-placed thumb rise, the knife feels molded to the hand. The bolsters are dovetailed and bed and lock two pairs of striking handle scales in a very hard gemstone of jasper and hematite.
    This stone is Fossilized Stromatolite Algae. These are intensely old fossils (over 570 million years old to 4500 million years old!) and are, truly, some of the oldest fossils on earth dating back to Precambrian times. We know little about this time, even though it's believed that the Precambrian accounts for 88 percent of the earth's time! We do know that the oceans were filled with blue-green algae for hundreds of millions of years, and these algae lived in a sea that had a very high content of iron. The iron became the coloring agent for this fossil and contributes to the natural intense red color as well as the hematite that runs through the fossil, as hematite is actually iron oxide. Over millions of years, the minerals replaced the fossil forms of the algae (called stromatoliths) to give us this beautiful and striking gemstone. The patterns, banding, curves, clear agate areas, and metallic hematite in this stone are all fascinating to examine both with the naked eye and under magnification. The stone is very hard, tough, and durable, and will surely last millions of years more! On the Sargon, the handle feels smooth, glassy, and dense: luxurious in the hand. The balance point of the knife is exactly at the forefinger groove and the knife locks solidly and comfortably into the grip.
  • Sheath: The curves of the gemstone patterns, lines in the knife profile, and pattern of the engraving are echoed in the dramatic sheath. The sheath is a large and significant stunning piece of work, fully and intricately hand-carved, hand-tooled, and hand-dyed front, back, and on the belt loop. The red of the sheath matches the brightest parts of the gemstone handle, and the black in the sheath reflects the hematite in the stone. I inlaid 16 pieces of black Frog Skin in the front and back, hand-stitched the sheath with black nylon with double row stitching on the belt loop for durability, and sealed the sheath with a glossy hand-buffed finish for longevity. The sheath is deep and thick, protecting the knife and wearer, with a high back and low front that allows a glimpse of the beautiful and prominent bolsters and handle.
  • This is a stunning knife, one that took a lot of detailed creative effort, and an object of unique beauty, blending the ancient with the modern.

Thanks, G. L.!

The feel, balance, and natural ergonomic design of the Sargon handle is exceptional – more than any other knife I have ever previously held, it really feels like a natural extension of the hand, and is quite secure and comfortable to hold, as I’m sure it will be to use. The engraving on the bolsters is aesthetically appealing and perfect (at least to my eyes), but not so ornate as to detract from the other elements of the knife. And the fossilized stromatolite algae handle scales are as beautiful to behold, as they are to contemplate – timeless, in fact. To imagine the huge span of time witnessed by this exceptional material, and realize that our entire lifetimes, or indeed, the existence of mankind, occupy but a vanishingly small fraction of the time taken for it to form, and its subsequent persistence on earth, is a truly humbling realization.

As I have with the other works I acquired from you, I very much appreciate the exacting and detailed filework on the spine of this knife, as well as the edgework. Finally, the mirror polish of the blade, its mellifluous lines, and its exquisite sharpness combine to make it a treasure to behold, but also one of the finest, yet most fundamental of tools. (The unique combination of utility, and art, are, first and foremost, the qualities that piqued my interest in fine, handmade knives at the outset, as I am sure is the case for many knife aficionados).

As I had already mentioned in my earlier missive, I was extremely impressed by the thought and execution of the sheath you created for the Sargon. In my humble opinion, it represents one of the finest and most complex sheaths you’ve ever created (at least of those I am familiar with). Its construction and contrasts result in a sort of trompe l'oeil effect, so that it appears to me, not as a simple, flat surface, but a truly three-dimensional structure which, viewed under the correct conditions, “jumps out at the viewer.” The bold colors of the leather nicely complement the scale gemstone as well. (BTW, one observes some extremely interesting optical effects when illuminating the scales with a green (532 nm) or red (693 nm) laser at an acute angle – certain mineral elements apparently behave as optical conduits when thus illuminated. I will attempt to photograph the effect and forward the results to you later.)

Jay, I must apologize for the fact that my crude descriptions, coupled with my rather nascent knowledge and understanding of knife-making art and technology can neither adequately nor eloquently describe my appreciation of your creations. I am certain, that, with time, education, and observation, I will eventually become better enabled to do so on many more levels than I can currently. Fortunately, your extraordinarily detailed website provides all of the means required for such an education. (Moreover, I must have a better look at the knife under natural sunlight, instead of the grim artificial light I currently have available.)

--G. L.


Please click on thumbnail knife photos
"Sargon" reverse side view. Sheath back has full tooling and inlay, double row stitched belt loop, and full finish "Sargon" spine edgework, filework detail. Filework is truncated, punchy vine, accurate and crisp throughout the fully tapered tang. "Sargon" inside handle tang detail. Bolsters are dovetailed and bed the hard jasper fossil handle scales, all surfaces are smoothly polished and contoured. "Sargon" reverse side handle detail. Curves of engraving reflect the fossilized microbes and algae that once lived hundreds of millions of years ago on our planet. "Sargon" obverse side front and mid-bolster pair hand-engraving detail. This photo is about a four power enlargement of the knife, showing the detail "Sargon" reverse side rear bolster engraving, gemstone handle scale 4 power enlargement. The patterns in the fossil are fascinating and highly figured "Sargon" point detail. Lines of the powder metal technology tool steel blade are elegant, graceful, and strong. "Sargon" sheathed view. Sheath is brightly hand polished and sealed, with black frogskin inlays in hand-carved leather shoulder "Sargon" sheath mouth view. Sheath is deep and thick-bodied, and will last for generations. "Sargon" sheath front, inlay and tooling detail. Sheath is hand-dyed, inlaid with multiple panels of real frog skin. "Sargon" sheath back, belt loop detail. Loop is stitched with double rows of black nylon for strength, back and loop are hand-carved, hand-dyed, tooled and inlaid with frog

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