Knives have been used for thousands of years, and collectible knives have been around almost as long.
Types of Knife Collections
While there are variations on types of knife collections, most collectors settle into one of four categories: brand names, handle materials, patterns and specialties. If you decide to collect brands, Winchester, Remington or Queen might be the manufacturer you choose. There is a myriad of handle materials to consider, such as mother of pearl, celluloid or stag. If you want patterns, you can look for knives with peanut, canoes or trappers, among others. Specialties can also be enticing, including souvenir or advertising knives.
Get an Education
You can go out and start buying collectible knives without further education, but you may make some costly mistakes. Buy some reference books. Check online auctions on knives. Join a collecting club. Attend local knife shows. The more that you know, the more likely you will be to get a real find. Your education will also help you avoid the pitfalls of buying fakes.
Tips on Looking at Collectible Knives
Look at the condition of the knife in question. You want to buy knives that are at least in excellent if not mint condition, keeping in mind that the older the knife is, the less likely knife is going to be in mint condition.
Consider not only the appearance, but the workability of the knife. For example, if you collect folding knives, you are going to want to make sure that the knife opens and closes easily.
How does the knife feel when you hold it? While this isn't applicable if you are buying an art knife, which was made to be seen and not used, the heft and balance of a knife can be an important consideration when buying a working knife.
The finish of the knife is also important. If the knife was soldered carelessly or if the knife is scratched, you may want to look for another for your collection.
Go for the best, but don't stretch your budget.
Once you start to purchase knives, take care of them. You collection will lose value if you let your knives get rusty or damaged.
Collecting knives can be both satisfying and rewarding. Who knows? As your collection grows, you may find yourself expanding to collecting both knives and swords!
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