Books about Making Knives

We are frequently asked to provide a list of knife making book references. There are some great text out there on making knives, so we’ll try to keep this post updated with some links to help. Some of the books are out of print, but many are still available. As Sean noted in an early episode of MotM, you may also be able to find some great references by visiting your local library or requesting books via inter-library loan.

One of the key go-to references for people wanting to learn the craft of tactical folding knives is “The Tactical Folding Knife: A Study of the Anatomy and Construction of the Liner-Locked Folder” by Bob Terzuola. This book is usually tough to find, and has become a bit of a collectable in its own right. Probably one of the most expensive books here, but one that any aspiring folder maker should own: LINK

The folks that publish Knife Magazine and the Knife World books have an excellent collection of books available for knife makers. Included are the “$50 Knife Shop” by Goddard and “How to Make Knives” by Barney/Loveless as referenced on the podcast: LINK

Sean recommended “Step-by-Step Knifemaking” by David Boye. David is an influential force in the knifemaking world and the father of Boye Dendritic Cobalt (also known as “BDC”), a cobalt alloy with high corrosion resistance and aggressive cutting performance: LINK

Also recommended is “Custom Knifemaking: 10 Projects from a Master Craftsman” by McCreight. This book covers a series of projects that help new makers learn new skills through each project: LINK

Tom managed to trigger a worldwide sellout and market escalation on “Knives and Knifemakers” by Sid Latham, but there are copies out there to be had with a little looking. A great source of inspiration and reference in this one, find a copy if you can. They seem to come up fairly regularly on eBay and in Amazon’s used book section: LINK

The “Knives” annual books are another great source of inspiration, information and contact details for various custom makers. These are great finds at your local used book store, garage sales, eBay, etc. The Knife World folks have a fairly extensive collection available and work to keep copies of these older books in stock: LINK

As always, check out Blade magazine and Knives Illustrated in a addition to Knife magazine (formerly Knife World) mentioned above. There are often articles included to give both makers and collectors a few tips and help keep you apprised of knife trends and the marketplace.

A membership at USN or BladeForums is a solid investment, as both forums have dedicated areas for knifemakers to ask questions and share information. A quick search of the forums can turn up super helpful information and guidance directly from some of the world’s top makers. There are new questions, but honestly many basic questions have already been asked and answered, so a little legwork on your part will likely turn up info to help you with whatever it is you’re working on.

Hope the references are of help, we’ll try to update the list as appropriate.

Episode 17: Ethnic Knives, The Gathering

We dive into the diverse and fascinating world of ethnic knives – knives and designs that come from specific regions or cultures around the world. We discuss the origins of these designs and how many of them influenced knives used to this day in both functional and fighting roles. Also discussed is the upcoming Gathering X show in Las Vegas. We offer advice for Gathering newcomers and some reminders about show etiquette.  

Episode 16: Lucas Burnley

Our friend and knifemaker Lucas Burnley joins us for a conversation about life, influences, knives and other projects like his immensely popular Cypop. We go pretty deep on this one and Lucas shares both insights on his creative process and how he works to keep his perspective fresh and skills sharp. You can find Lucas on Facebook at Burnley Knives, on Instagram @burnleyknives or at his website burnleyknives.com  

Episode 14: Kevin Devitt

In our first Collector Spotlight episode, we sit down for a chat with Kevin Devitt. Those familiar with Kevin know that he has a collection of custom knives that is as diverse as it is deep. We talk about his collecting motivation and changes in the scene over time. Kevin shares some insights on a few special pieces in his collection that you won’t want to miss. Join us in the Mark of the Maker group on Facebook to see some photos of these special knives or find Kevin on Instagram @krevman12. 

Episode 13: Randall Made

In our second history episode, we dig into the early days of Randall Made Knives and how they grew to be known as one of the premier knife companies in the world.  We talk about the vision and legacy of W.D. “Bo” Randall, how his brand helped define and shape the knife industry, and about how Randall Made Knives have been favored by our armed forces for decades.  The crew each talks about their favorite model and some background on why they find them significant.  

Episode 12: Blade Show 2018 Recap

The MotM team recaps Blade Show 2018 and some of the changes to the show for this year – some that were good, and others not so good. We share some sounds from the floor of the biggest knife show of the year and some feedback we received about the podcast during the weekend. The crew discusses a few newer makers to watch, cool stuff we brought home and some advice for makers about how they might reflect on their own Blade 2018 experience.

Episode 11: Show Etiquette

With Blade Show just around the corner, we decided to offer up an episode regarding knife show etiquette.  Some of the tips are specific to Blade, but most are applicable to any knife show experience.  We discuss prep, do’s and don’ts, and some advice for both collectors and makers, whether veterans of the show scene or new folks to the fold.  See you in a couple weeks!

Mark of the Maker Coffee Mugs

These mugs were sort of an experiment to see how the logo would come across as a laser engraving. We’ll call it a success, but we only have a few available. These are 10oz ceramic mugs with the MotM logo engraved on both sides. Since the logo is actually cut through the outer white layer, they are dishwasher safe and should help faciliate your self-caffeinatation (unless you prefer Bourbon, which is cool too) while you enjoy the podcast.

The laser engraved mugs are $25 each, plus $12 shipping to US addresses. As always, more for international. Yes, the shipping is expensive, but you can thank the USPS for that and ceramic mugs are a pain to package safely. Maybe someday we’ll have a Mark of the Maker Prime option. Ha!!

We only have a few, so hit the Buy Now button below if youre you’re interested and thanks as always for your support of the show.


*** SOLD OUT ***


Mark of the Maker T-Shirt Preorder!

We’ve been kicking around this design for a little bit and decided we’d offer a tribute shirt for every knifemaker’s favorite band, A2/D2. The pre-order will be open until Noon EST on Sunday, April 29. Production time on the shirts is approx. 2 weeks, so they should ship out to you the week of May 14th and arrive to you just in time for Blade Show 2018. You will want to wear one to Blade Show as there will likely be a cool giveaway that may only be entered by folks wearing this special MotM A2/D2 shirt. Details to follow in the Facebook group and on the podcast itself.

These are Gildan 5.3 oz. 100% pre-shrunk cotton shirts and printed on both sides. The Mark of the Maker icon logo is on the front center chest and the rear print incorporates all four makers marks. Printed in white on black, just like any proper knifemaker t-shirt should be. Why? Because them’s the rules.

These limited-edition shirts are ** PREORDER CLOSED **, shipped to US addresses. More for 2XL-4XL, details in the PayPal button below. There will be an additional $15-30 for overseas shipping, please contact us using the Contact Us form along the right hand side of the page for a shipping quote for international destinations.

*** SHIRT PRE-ORDER IS CLOSED ***

Front Design


Back Design