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Wes Detrick

The Wayfarer's Bowie

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This knife was made with a bit of story attached to it. It is a gift for my Uncle, who is damn near 80 and has been quite an influence in my life. He grew up in the back woods of Southern Alabama (where lots of my family still lives), joined the Navy (his original Navy pea coat hangs in my closet), and then went to art school eventually becoming a life long professional photographer and artist. He traveled the world taking pictures, and crisscrossed the US more times than I can count taking more. I lived with him for a few years while going to school and he has always been one to really encourage me to do something great. Always supportive, but not one to mince words; he would tell me when he thought I needed to fix something or do something differently. I am grateful to know him; he is a great man.

 

So with that being said, I made a knife that I tried to make look as though it has lived a long and well used life. The blade has been aged. The handle was abused so it would have nicks, scratches and dents. The finish is uneven on it. But at the same time, I didn't want it to look worn out, but instead, still strong, sharp and keen. As though the use didn't beat it down, but made it harder. I hope I accomplished that.

 

So enough of the mushy stuff. Here are the specs and pictures.

 

Steel : Aldo's W2 (yes there is a hamon under the patina!)

Guard : Rust blued mild steel and copper

Handle: stained and aged Goncalvo Alves

Blade Length: 6.75 inches

OAL: 11.5 inches

 

 

wayfarer.jpg

 

patina.jpg

 

worn.jpg

 

guardagain.jpg

 

sheathed.jpg

 

 

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reading the mushystuff i would say successful :)

cool leather work

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Thats an awesome knife, I love the patina on it, really makes it look like its been around a block a few times and made a name for itself.

Will be a fitting gift for the uncle....

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I like everything about this knife! The finish on the blade is superb and the proportions are all smooth and beautiful :) I like how even though the piece is aged on purpose everything is still sharp and clean, very purposeful and powerful work.

 

Killer job man! I know your uncle will appreciate this blade very much!

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That came out good! I think your uncle will approve. :)

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Thank you everyone! I am glad that you enjoy the knife and I am glad that you all are able to see it for what I wanted it to be.

 

 

I like how even though the piece is aged on purpose everything is still sharp and clean, very purposeful and powerful work.

 

That is exactly what I was hoping would come across. Thank you Emiliano!

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Wes, I really like that one, and the story behind is inspiring! There is something to be said for an life changing influence like your Uncle's!!!

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Yeah, that works! It looks like it's spent a lifetime going round all the "interesting" parts of the world and is still looking forward to doing it all again!

 

Great job, love it!

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A really superb piece Wes. All I can say is that looking at those pics, makes me want to pick that knife up and hold it.

Mission accomplished.

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I love the balance of aesthetic in this knife. It's got the perfect amount of the grim and grungy flair, complimented with a nice crisp and straightforward silhouette that really balance and emphasize the best of each style, just like black coffee and a good doughnut ;)

If you don't mind, could you go into a bit more detail on how you patinated the blade and the guard?

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That is sweet! I'd say mission well accomplished. Have you considered distressing the sheath a bit to continue the theme?

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I totally love it.

 

Yup. The whole thing, backstory and all. B)

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Reminds me of some Japanese hunting knifes I've seen- I like it all and that patina really drives the point home.

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It's beautiful Wes! Simple done in a tasteful way! I like how the hamon is subtle and hidden by the patina.

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Again, thank you everyone, I greatly appreciate your comments. I am glad that you like it as much as you do, and the things I wanted to achieve are apparent in the knife.

 

 

That is sweet! I'd say mission well accomplished. Have you considered distressing the sheath a bit to continue the theme?

 

I thought about it Brian, but in the end I decided against it. I was afraid that if I pushed it, then it would start to look artificial. There are a few nicks and worn spots in the leather that lend to that idea, but nothing big.

 

 

 

If you don't mind, could you go into a bit more detail on how you patinated the blade and the guard?

 

I don't mind at all Collin.

 

The guard is rust blued, and here is a good thread about it that Gabriel started that I contributed to about it. Its a forced rust process.

 

 

Here is the blade patination process. Please note that this is not an original process from me, but a process that Wayne Morgan shared with me. Credit goes to him as far as I can tell.

 

I went to Lowes or Home Depot(can't remember which), and bought some garden vermiculite. If you want the brand, I can certainly get you that. Anyhow, I took a sheet cake pan and filled it with the vermiculite and then poured white vinegar in until the vermiculite was muddy. Not sopping wet, but like wet dirt. I then packed the blade into that mixture and let it sit overnight. I made sure that the mixture was packed pretty solid around all sides of the blade.

Once it came out, it had an oxide layer, which I then wiped off with a paste metal polish. I then repeated that process 2 more times for a total of 3 nights in a row. After that the blade got a few short etches in ferric chloride (I dilute mine about 5 to 1) which helped darken it and bring out the hamon a bit more. And that's all. Hope that helps.

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really nice work! love the aged look and clean lines

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Too many guys want to do "aged" or "patina" and think it means poorly finished and rough.

 

The true key to proper age & patina is to be able to finish a piece perfectly and then age it gracefully. Remember, all old things were once new. Ageing and patination are both an art and a skill.

 

This knife is a prime example.

 

Good work Wes.

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Thanks John.

 

 

 

Too many guys want to do "aged" or "patina" and think it means poorly finished and rough.

 

The true key to proper age & patina is to be able to finish a piece perfectly and then age it gracefully. Remember, all old things were once new. Ageing and patination are both an art and a skill.

 

This knife is a prime example.

 

Good work Wes.

 

Thank you Don, that is about the best compliment I could get on it and I appreciate it.

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Thanks for also sharing your aging process with us! I keep coming back to this and drooling over the photos. One of these days I would love to do a collaborative piece with you Wes :D

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Thanks for also sharing your aging process with us! I keep coming back to this and drooling over the photos. One of these days I would love to do a collaborative piece with you Wes :D

 

Of course! I love this forum, and the people on it. I find the more that I give, the more I get back but in spades.

Whenever you want to talk about a collab, just message me :) That would be awesome!

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