The Blade Show was a little different for me this year, this being my 19th year going to the show. It has changed allot over the years and grown tremendously. For the last 16 years I lived just north of Atlanta and could just drive down to the show everyday. I have even setup and exhibited there in years past, but this year since moving back to Kentucky we drove down and stayed at the Waverly Hotel that adjoins the Cobb galleria where the show is held. The “pit” in the atrium of the Waverly is hopping every night and they party pretty heavy. I got to hangout and chat with several of the makers I represent and meet many famous and new ones, it was a great time.
My son and I arrived Thursday afternoon. Thanks to Mike Radford and Phillip Gasser of Jake Hoback Knives for helping me secure a room at the Waverly, they were sold out. We hung around the pit most of thursday night and headed to the show friday about noon. My first stop was Jeff Freeman’s booth. I sell allot of Freeman’s knives and always like to see what he has new. This year he did not disappoint and I picked up a bunch of folders and a couple of the 5″ fixed blades I was out of. I got a few of the 451 button lock folders he made up of all carbon fiber for the show. These are great with the strength of Ti and lighter than aluminum. This is a fantastic knife. From there I went to Rick Hinderer knives and chatted with Rick awhile. Rick actually used to live in the same town in Kentucky as I and right down the road from me. Neat seeing all of the cool stuff they have coming. From there I checked out Miller Bros, Wilmont and Rustic knives. I talking for a while with Jack “Rusty” Stottlemire who owns Rustick knives and found we have something in common. We were actually born in the same small town in Ky at the same hospital. I actually know many of his relatives. I admire this man and his work very much, he served 27 years in the military and retired out of SOF after 14 combat tours and 13 surgeries. This man gave allot for our country. His knives are simply beautiful. I own 3 personally that I bought from him a couple of years ago. He does not have any dealers, but said he would give me a shot. That would be great, an honor to carry his work. From there we went to Bastinelli and picked up a few of the custom blades. I had talked with Bastion at the pit the night before.
Saturday we hit the show at 9:00 am and checked out Alfa knife owned by Damon Lusky. I am also a dealer for Damon’s fine handmade knives. From there it was on to T.M. Hunt, we are a dealer for Todd and it is always nice to see him. Spent a day up at his shop in IN last summer and had a blast. Then on to Jake Hoback Knives, Medford, MSC, Chris Reeve knives, DPX Gear, Doublestar, Walter Brend and Spartan Knives. I will be picking up DPX, Spartan and a few Reeve’s in the next couple of months. The rest of my time was spent going aisle by aisle looking at all of the custom makers tables. I talked with many about representing their knives. May have some very nice customs in the works. Sunday I finally caught up with Jim Behring of Treeman Knives. I have known Jim for several years and bought, sold and traded knives with him. Sadly, he told me he was discontinuing he Treeman Combat line of knives. These are actually some of my favorites, I bought out his table. He may have a few more unfinished knives at the shop, but what I have is the last of them completed, they are on my site. I also got meet Mellisa Miller (Melissa Backwoods) from naked and afraid. She is really nice. It was a great trip, saw so many really cool knives and talented people. If you like knives, you should really plan on making it to the Blade show, there is simple nothing else like it.