A modern reprint of the how-to classic, highly recommended to anyone interested in making or repairing folding knives. For those of you that aren’t familiar with the author, Adrian Harris is better known to the knife world as “Colonel Coon” – maker of a very popular line of collectable knives in the 1970s and 1980s. Harris was also Schrade’s factory repairman for a time. A short profile of “Col. Coon” is included.
This edition contains all of the material in the original book PLUS two additional chapters entitled “Make Your Own Knife” and “Etching Blades”, as well as dozens of B&W photos, line drawings, and tables.
reviewed by KW Staff
This excellent little book is one of those gems that appeared in print many years ago, stuck around for a short time, sold out and disappeared, almost forgotten but for a core group of enthusiasts who thought it the greatest thing since sliced bread. Now, twenty four years after its initial publication, one of those devoted fans has endeavored to reprint it so that others can be exposed to the cutlering expertise of Adrian Harris.
Mr. Harris penned Knife Repair & Restoration in 1981, while his “Colonel Coon” brand of collector-grade knives was in its heyday. Through it, Harris’ in-depth knowledge of the inner workings of folding knives was conveyed in a simple, easy to understand manner, accessible to anyone with an interest in knife repair. Evidence that it works is easily found in the fact that the man reprinting it, Eugene Blankenship (“The Knife Doctor”) used it as the foundation for building his own expertise in knife repair.
The book is divided into nine major sections, with an additional two sections on safety and the parts of a knife. The larger topics are covered under chapters entitled Small Hand Tools; Machinery; Grinding & Buffing; Assembly & Disassembly; Blades & Springs; Pins, Bolsters, Scales and Shields; Switchblades, Lock-backs, Rigid Blades; Handle Material; and Heat Treating – just about everything you’d need to know to get started repairing knives. If you want to know how to make a cutler’s “steady,” or use a slackner, or crink a blade, or spin a pin, or if you just want to repair an old knife and have no earthly idea what any of those things are, this book explains what to do in simple language, and shows you how with the all-new illustrations.
Those already familiar with Ben Kelley’s Complete Book of Pocketknife Repair [no longer available] should note that Harris’ book takes a different approach to some tasks facing the knife repairman, and each book covers ground not addressed in the other. For only $16.00 and $10.95 respectively, the would-be repairman would be wise to obtain both books for the shelf or shop.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Parts of a Knife
Types of Blades
Small Hand Tools
Grinding & Buffing
Assembly & Disassembly
Blades & Springs
Pins, Bolsters, Scales and Shields
Switchblades, Lockbacks, Rigid Blades
Make Your Own Knife