Today we bring you our latest 5 from the Grinder post, this time from Denny Furey, of Furey’s Urban Combat Knives Unlimited. His offerings are a bit of a departure from KNIFE Magazine’s typical coverage, which tends to be light on the modern tactical knives, though we have covered Allen Elishewitz and other heavyweights from the niche. Denny’s knives show the hallmarks of his experience in martial arts, but also respect and comfort with more traditional knives like handle material choice or techniques like a Japanese hamon.
So without further ado, I give you Denny Furey…
Please introduce yourself and let us know what led you to making/designing knives
My name is Denny Furey and I am a full-time custom knife maker located in Spring, Texas, having started in 2015. I specialize in self defense, fighting, military, and first responder oriented edged weapons, knives, and tools. I am a military veteran of Operations Desert Shield/Storm/Provide Comfort and the Global War on Terrorism, having served 10-years (both active duty and reserves) in the United States Air Force Security Police/Forces, as well as teaching combatives for deployments. I am also a retired 20-year law enforcement veteran, having worked numerous aspects of the job from patrolman to chief of police in the state of Oklahoma. I served in the capacity as a Senior SWAT Operator and Instructor, developing curriculum, to include edged weapons defense and application for SWAT schools.
I have been a life-long martial arts and combatives student, practitioner, and instructor; still serving as a guest instructor upon request (Furey Combatives). This background is what started me on the road to become an avid knife collector, edged weapons student, and instructor. I also run Furey Combatives.
After relocating from Oklahoma to Texas, a close friend and a professional knife maker suggested I try my hand at making them as well, considering my background. I jumped in with both feet and found I had an affinity at developing and producing quality knives. I have been mentored by two extremely talented blade makers, as well as completed collaboration builds with other professional bladesmiths and makers.
What knifemaker(s) or designer(s) have had the biggest influence on you? Do you have any mentors?
I was primarily mentored when I started by Michael Cleveland of Half Life Knives and the late Scott Horn (RIP) of Airborne Knives. I pull inspiration from far too many makers and designers to list. I enjoy makers that have unique aesthetic pieces.
What is your favorite knife pattern or style from history?
I tend to lean towards daggers as the historical influence. The fighting dagger, such as that of the Applegate/Fairbairn or the Fairbairn/Sykes.
What is the next big thing in knifemaking? / What direction do you see the industry going?
I see a lot of aesthetic blades, that are beautiful, yet meant for hard use; not just safe queens.
Is there a knife from your lineup that you feel best exhibits who you are as a knifemaker/designer in terms of design elements, aesthetic or techniques used?
My “Hōfuku” (Japanese for Retribution) sub-hilt dagger is one that best suits the direction of my work.
What is your EDC and why?
I usually carry a Fox 590 Karambit with SnaggleTooth opener and a large Cold Steel Luzon for production blades and a Methos ringed knife made my my late mentor, Scott Horn of Airborne Knives.