Discussion in 'Edged Tools' started by Iz, Aug 22, 2012.
What is the damage on that particular knife?
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5 bills even
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After many years of searching and waiting, I am thrilled to report that I finally acquired my “grail” hollow handle survival knife! The knife was made 30 years ago by custom knifemaker, Steve Allen, under the name Running River Knives in Riverside, Rhode Island. The knife is so rare that it isn't even listed in "The Survival Knife Reference Guide" by Douglas Berner, but I think it is one of the best designed survival knives ever created, yet very few people have ever heard of it. It is obvious that Steve intentionally did not follow the trend of sawteeth and oversized double guards that was so common and expected on knives during the 1980s hollow handle knife craze. Instead, I believe that Steve set out to build a practical cutting tool designed for a woodsman.
The Running River ‘Wilderness’ Knife, as I call it, has a robust, utilitarian, no non-sense appearance. The 7” x 1 ½” x ¼” Bowie clip blade is made of 440C stainless steel. The guard, handle, and buttcap are also stainless. The blade grind falls between flat and convex - leaning more towards flat. A one inch tang runs the full width of the handle and is machine fitted to tightly fit within the heavy steel tube. It is then threaded and epoxied for maximum strength. The lack of sawteeth on the spine is a preference of mine, as I have never found sawteeth to be useful for my needs and often question if they might compromise the blade’s strength in some situations.
One of my favorite features of the Running River knife is the short top guard that allows easy thumb placement on the spine for better blade control and cutting force. Double guards have always been a pet peeve of mine, as they restrict grip and are more suited for and associated with fighting knives. The generous handle length welcomes various grips without cramping the hand. At the bottom of the handle tube, there is a flat steel plate that creates a nicely finished “floor”. The oversized buttcap atheistically and functionally balances the knife and enhances the grip for chopping. The buttcap threads are cut deep and sharp, which explains its smooth operation. The guard edges are uniformly beveled and the lanyard hole is countersunk.
A high quality, Marbles brass compass is included in the handle, but not permanently installed in the buttcap. I much prefer this set up for the convenience of taking continuous bearings without the need to unscrew the buttcap each time and it allows the buttcap to remain in place, so the handle contents are not lost. Additionally, if the buttcap is used for pounding, a permanently installed compass risks being damaged and can be expensive to replace depending on its quality and availability.
The sheath is constructed of heavy saddle leather and incorporates two innovative design features that I have never seen before. First, the hone pocket is recessed into the sides of the front panel, so the stitching remains flat and less exposed. Second, the leg tie is threaded through the slots at the bottom of the hone pocket, then wrapped around the body of the sheath and leg holding it firmly in place. This method eliminates the use of a flimsy tab at the bottom of the sheath and works great for heavy knives that have a tendency to flop around. If the tie is removed, there is no evidence of a tie down attachment, which gives the sheath a clean look. On the back of the sheath, there is an optional high-ride belt loop with a quick release “pull-the-dot” snap.
Overall, it is evident that Steve took great pride in his work, because both knife and sheath are exceptionally well made, carefully thought out, and beautifully shaped and proportioned. Everything from grind lines to knurling to assembly to leatherwork is executed with precision. Yet, if I could use only one word to describe the knife, it would be SOLID. Its tank-like construction gives a real sense of confidence in its ability to perform and withstand hard use. After all these years of admiring the Running River knife in old magazine advertisements, it certainly exceeded my expectations. It’s hard to believe this knife flew under the radar and wasn’t more popular back in the glory days. Sadly, it was probably dismissed as just another “Rambo knife” and consequently soon passed into hollow handle survival knife history.
I just received a rare 1970s Parker Brothers Knife. Can anyone help me find out about it.
One of the more practical hollow handle knives ever designed...
I've had this one for several years.
I remember the Buckmaster from way, way back. How does that work with the spikes sticking back toward your hand??
It can be used as is actually, but depending on grip and knife angle, they can kinda get in the way. If you were to use this for regular knife duties they would be removed and stored until needed. They allow the knife to be used as an anchor of sorts for different tasks though I never have found a need for that. I have the short set installed and the longer set is there as well.
I did not notice there were two length. Interesting concept of use.
Looks totally bad***, though.
Here's mine, Buckmaster 184. Purchased this around 27 years ago!
I still want one! Really lovin this thread guys.
I REALLY wanted one of those Buckmasters back in the day, even though I couldn't figure out the spikes. Not as much nowadays, but, like I said above, they're still totally bada**!
I still cant believe U.S. companies used to actually make blades SO BLOODY STRONG you could grapple with them (maybe). And to be hollow handle to boot. This was way before I was even born to Im used to the black coat tacticool crap that is rarely tested. The maybe 2 times ive held this knife in person it felt like the epitome of strength and ideal craftsmanship.
If mine wasn't so pristine I'd consider actually using it, lol.
I had the standard silver version too but sold it a few years back.
Id like to find a good condition user and put it through the paces to see how well it performs and holds up to all around bushcrafty camp duties.
A cheap-o hollow handle from the early 80's and a cheap Marine Ka-bar knock off, also from the early 80's.
I like the Chris Reeves, have several of the Blackie Collins designed S&W of the 70's but especially the Hackman Survival knife made in the Vietnam Era
Designed by Ken Warner and Pete Dickey; this rare knife was made during the late 1960s and early 1970s. Only a few thousand were made by Hackman with a 1/4" blade in Finland, with the majority produced by Garcia in Brazil with a 3/16" blade. The Hackman survival knife was intended for private sale to military personnel bound for Vietnam. The Randall Model 18 had made the hollow handle sawback popular with the troops, but Randall could not keep up with demand. Like the Randall this knife featured a watertight hollow handle and a massive 1/4" thick stainless steel blade.
Another Buckmaster. This one is a first production run from 1984.
Bumping for goodness' sake!
I think we need a Hollow handle a go go thread to prove just how worthless and weak they really are.
I have a Wall Robert Parrish Sunfish design OTW
My latest addition for hollow handled knife, a Schrade SCHF2SM. I had a 1SM years ago that I liked everything about it but the handle. Just couldn't get used to that little finger notch thing just behind the guard, so I sold it. But the siren song has been strong with these. So I traded @87Burban for one he was getting rid of.
The first thing that I did was to try to overcome that finger notch thing. So, I cut some paracord, pulled out the guts, and whipped it on the handle to fill the void. Then I hit it with a light layer of Crazy Glue to keep it from sliding around over itself. It looked all "Bubba", but it accomplished its task quite well.
So then, then I needed to do something about the all steel handle being so darned cold during the winter. Bicycle inner tube worked wonders. Hard as hell to slip on over the handle, but no problem staying put once it was on.
I actually like the way it looks now. The handle feels great being all the same diameter!
So, let's see how she works. Spent some time changing the edge angle. The factory grind was WAY too obtuse. Spent part of the afternoon doing the first burn on Kni-Co Trekker tent stove. Had to process some wood for that. The 2SM batons and stab/splkts and feathers and notches like a champ.
i think I'm really gonna like this knife a whole lot!
Now to make a functional leather sheath worthy of a decent knife.
@Sandcut I have the drop point version of the Schrade -- great knife for the money and underrated. But yes, the edge needs work. I convexed & steepened mine and it's way better.
Wait...you haven't shown us your hollow handle kit.
That's because I'm being an indecisive ninny and can't make up my mind as to what and how much crap to squirrel away in that little space.
Maybe I'll test out just how waterproof the handle really is and fill it up with a good cognac. That way, when the S does HTF, I can kick back and drink a good snort of liquor with my pinkie out while the walls come tumbling down around me.
I bet you never saw THAT on The Walking Dead! I never saw Michonne drink with her pinkie out.
@Sandcut Not a bad idea on the cognac. You, know, it could be used as a fire starter and wound disinfectant as well.
Now let's see 'em get dirty!
What is the non-Apparo knife?
Yes. Enquiring minds want to know!
The knife is a Bill Sanders S4. The saw works great compared to the Apparo. This one I bought on the web used, in mint condition and it came with a cool tool roll in the handle. I don’t think it originally came with it, but could be wrong.
Frost Cutlery stainless I bought 16 years ago when these were the thing. Has a compass in the cap and a sharpening stone. I added a Ferro Rod with a fire cord lanyard and stuffed the handle with cotton balls. It spends its life tucked next to the seat in my pickup.
Ya know, I hate to see respectable bushcrafters like yourself being taken advantage of by others who aren't so kind-hearted. As such, I'll trade you a lightly used Mora for this hollow handled monstrosity. No one apparently ever told you that hollow handled survival knives are worthless for bushcrafting and I don't want you to be teased.
Only knife I have with a hollow handle. No saw teeth though.
What a gratuitous act of kindness. Lol
FYI, I seen a new one available if you did a quick search on the bay.
Thas' my baby! Purchased in mint condition in a pawn shop south of Cleveland (no sheath) together with a Tropical Model Martini-Henry rifle (577-.450) AND bayonet. for $100 for both, including sales tax. Happy day! In my research, I ended up with The Practical Book of Knives that has an article on the knife.
Reeve... my modded Ubejane:
This may be the only forum to go against the grain in such a form.
Which one of you guys is bidding up my new knife? Lol
Dibs if you ever sell her. Please and thank you. Love it!
So true! Most others are too busy listing all the reason you can't. Meanwhile, over here things are getting done with the tool in hand
They wouldn't trade for my Mora either.
. I got beat last second.
And here I thought I didn't need any more sharps.
Looky what I found today!
Even came with the last owner's survival kit. I think the matches are from the 80s.
But the best part was the asking price.
$24.95!!!!!!!! Can you believe it??!! I've been looking at the same knife at recent gun shows for a year for like $70.
Now I really gotta start working on my handle kits!
The store also had an unused, but previously owned Ontario ASEK for $50. Hadn't ever been sharpened. I really had to control myself to not walk out with both.
See, I DO have some level of self-control.
This old boy has been with me for over 45 years and I've never had a complaint from it. Nice to see there are still some other hollow handle knives serving their masters on here.
What a great forum. Long live the hollow handle mans' knives boys, and thanks for sharing yours, with us all. lb
There are some of my HANDMADE HOLLOW HANDLE KNIVES... TOGETHER WITH MY HANDMADE GIL HIBBEN RAMBO 3 KNIFE... #99 OF 100!!
For the ever-lovin' love of Colonel Troutman!!!!!!!
It's the mother load of Rambo knives!
And do I read you correctly? Those are all real knives and not replicas? With, like, real steel and everything?
(Insert Homer Simpson salivating emoji here)