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Little Green Grunt

Here’s one I just finished for my friend Dudley out in Topeka. It’s loosely based on the Little Grunt I made for my paratrooper buddy Nick but with handle scales instead of a cord wrap.

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Dudley asked for green micarta handle scales with red liners, so that’s what I used. I have to admit, I really like that combination – those red liners really set off the olive green micarta. The blade on this one is 1084, which I’ve become really fond of for small / medium using knives. This steel just takes a wicked edge and seems to hold it forever. The blade is fully hardened and drawn back at the spine, tang, and ricasso for toughness.

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The outer profile of the blade and tang were filed by hand (as opposed to being ground down on a belt grinder), and then cold blued. This allowed me to leave some texture on the outer edges of the steel and also give the tang and spine a slightly rounded shape. The bluing also gave it some nice contrast, better rust resistance, and sex appeal. I call this look “Blue Steel,” which was incidentally also the name of my signature look back when I was a male model.

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Now here’s a little detail you may not have known about me: before I became a bladesmith I was an internationally celebrated male runway model, and even served as the inspiration for the main character in the movie Zoolander. However, as much as I enjoyed the many contributions I made to society by modelling men’s fashions, I felt there was more to life than being really, really, ridiculously good looking, so I left the runway for a new life in the workshop. My friends now call me “Derelicte.”*

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Anyway, the Little Green Grunt has a full tapered tang to reduce weight and improve balance, and the handle scales are held on by three slightly flared stainless steel thong hole tubes. What do you think of that, Hansel?

*In case you didn’t pick up on it, that whole thing about me being a male model was all in jest. The part about me being really really ridiculously good looking, however, is completely true. As is the part about my friends calling me Derelicte.

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SGT H.’s Knife is done

After a few minor setbacks SGT H.’s knife is done and shipped out. Unfortunately after I had just about completed the handle I noticed a few areas of soft, punky, weaker wood – always a risk with spalted maple – which I feared would chip out and compromise the handle strength. Even though the wood was stabilized, it was still weak in some spots. This of course is unaccaptable on a knife – especially one that may end up being carried into a warzone! So I decided to scrap it. It’s never fun to throw out a piece of wood that you’ve spend a decent amount of money and effort on, but sometimes it has to be done. I spoke to SGT H. about our little setback, sent him a photo of some possible replacements, and we settled on a nice piece of desert ironwood. In the end, I think it turned out great.
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I also like how the guard came out. The contrast between the etched and blued wrought iron and the shiny stainless steel and phosphor bronze spacers adds a nice visual touch.

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I was also very happy with the piece of ironwood we chose for the handle. It had a beautiful, nicely figured grain and some rich, warm color tones that worked really well with the rough forged look of the blade and guard.

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The sheath worked out too. Nice, snug fit. They’re now en-route to SGT H and should be in his hands in a few days. And I’m en-route to the shop again, to work on a few more knives for soldiers…

By the way, I documented the build of this knife right here on dicksworkshop.com. Just click on The Shop and go to Techniques to check it out.

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