There’s something wonderful about building a folding knife collection. Folding knives are convenient. They don’t require sheaths, you can carry them anywhere and storage is easy. Folding knives are less intimidating and often less expensive than their fixed blade brethren. Given the impact of 9/11 and airport security issues, carrying a folding knife in your luggage still draws less attention and suspicion than a fixed blade. Today, folders offer more choices, and fill more niches than the pocket knives of old. As a result, there are more collection opportunities than ever before. So if you’re considering starting a folding knife collection, there’s no time like the present.
Folding Knife Collection Considerations
There are a number of considerations leading to the creation of your knife collection. Does your interest lie in a particular brand of knife, say Buck, Case or other well-known manufacturer? Collectors build collections around styles of knives; standard folder, assisted openers and multi-blade varieties. Some are interested in particular types of knives designed for hunting, fishing, sporting activities, rescue operations, and tactical missions while others are supreme pieces of art generally “too pretty to use.”
Other factors may be important to you as well. Some collectors select folding knives based on the type of steel used, the shape of the blade, or the locking mechanisms employed for user safety. Other more practical factors include usage; the folder might be a working knife employed regularly to perform a task or it might be the knife of an artisan’s delight displayed for beauty’s sake or monetary investment and never used.
Cost can be a huge factor, Folding knives good quality can be found
A commercially manufactured quality knife will range approximately $50 to $200. Pieces of art may start at approximately $200 and skyrocket into the thousands of dollars.
Displaying your folding knife collection is yet another consideration. Depending on your goals, soft knife cases may run less than $10 and a fine wooden chest from $325 upwards depending on size, construction and features. It is unlikely that you’d stick a handcrafted masterpiece in the back of a desk drawer. Proper display is desired. Expenditures may rise swiftly.
A modest collection may build over the years and only reach a value slightly higher than purchase amounts. One very excellent specimen may be worth more than some entire collections. Yes, even the addition of a few “got to have” fixed blades may find a home in your family of knives. That’s the really great thing about a knife collection. You make your own rules. Remember too, that you can appraise a collection for cash but never for sentimental value and fond memories. In fact, you’ll know that inherited pieces, folders and fixed blades alike, may be priceless to you. They won’t be for sale under any conditions.
Know Your Folding Knife Collection
A serious collector is more than a sum of their collection. If a modest collection is your end goal, you’ll still want to keep an eye on the folding knife market. It is a good practice to read about the knives that interest you. Blade Magazine and current works are great places to start. Learn vocabulary. Study the trends. Stay in touch with your favorite manufacturers through newsletters if available. Get involved with others of like interest by joining a knife club or association. Many have newsletters and regular member events plus the added advantage of networking with skilled crafts people and experienced collectors.
Becoming a skilled collector requires interest, a willingness to learn and a desire to experience new things. Your ultimate destination is the acquisition of a folding knife collection that you care about for years to come. You want a collection that you’re proud to share with others.. In time you will accumulate not only folding knives but knowledge and great memories too.