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A long absence and a haunting Bowie

Byron studley

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It’s been almost 3 years since I’ve touched anything to do with bladesmithing. An extended spell of poor mental health, somewhat kept in check by the creative outlet of forging came to a head after forging this blade for a friend nearly 3 years ago. 

I locked up my workshop and decided I needed to get away from everything so I built a camper and room a 4 month trip with my partner at the time only to find that on arriving home and moving in with her father ( we moved out of our rented house before travelling) I found that my mental health was in fact worse. The trip had taken a big toll, mainly due to the realisation that my problems stemmed from being unhappy in my relationship. 

So to continue the upending of everything we split, I moved in with my parents and put my whole workshop in a storage unit as it was in a garage that belonged to my now ex’s father.

I contemplated a move across the country, I spent a lot of time in a tattoo shop learning the ropes as an alternative career path.

Then I met a wonderful women who is now my partner and her lovely daughter who was six months at the time. We had a baby together. The girls are now 2  years old and 4 months old. I genuinely haven’t ever been this happy

The tattoo gig got put on hold thanks to corona shutting the shop down and during that time I’ve decided I’m happiest while working with my hands.


The two constants through this whole period have been my day job (I’m a carpenter and general builder) this work has been my main job for the last 8 years. The second constant being the San mai Bowie occupying space both in a draw in my dads wood working workshop (where my knife making gear is all currently packed into a corner or two) and a space in the back of my mind. Always reminding myself it’s there and that I wish I had finished it. Bladesmithing has been on the back burner for me since locking my workshop up before travelling, never given up on but life kept getting in the way and it became more of a research pursuit than a practical one.


Well the woodworking construction side of my business with my dad and uncle has taken off too a point where we need industrial space and have been actively looking. Which sparked an interest in getting all of my bladesmithing gear setup up and working in a section of the unit. 

This in turn has sent me back down the rabbit hole and I’ve been hit with a sense of rejuvenation 

This knife is a san mai a two bar twist core clad in 1095 on the outsides it’s around 8inches and it will be finished in 2021. 









Edited by Byron studley
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Well... after reading all that- id have probably just two things to say.


1. Glad you're doing better. I'm a former soldier with PTSD who all too well, understands what depression and mental health can do to your life.


2. Ok, its done now. You're back on your feet.




Thats a gorgeous profile, and you need to show us it finished and looking sexy.:D:D

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6 hours ago, clint c said:

Really looking forward to seeing this blade with handle and fittings. Glad your back and moving forward.  Clint

Thanks Clint, me too I’ve had many versions of this knife in my head over the years but I think I’ve settled on something solid now. Just have to turn it into reality

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On 3/30/2021 at 12:00 AM, Byron studley said:

I genuinely haven’t ever been this happy

Hope this is something you will be able to repeat daily from here on out.

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RIP Bear....be free!


as always

peace and love




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