The Story Told In Scale
One of the most endearing things about blacksmithing is that the object tells the story of its creation through a road map of hammer and tool marks left behind on the forged surface. The black iron oxides formed on the surface of the steel as it is worked at red hot temperatures are what give blacksmiths their name, and are a dead giveaway of forged items. Often this "forge scale” will be ground away during the knifemaking process, but when it is intentionally left as a surface finish it is called “brut de forge”. In French this translates roughly to “gross from the forge” or “rough from the forge”.
A skilled smith can forge his blades so closely to shape that they need little grinding at all, and bear a coat of forge scale throughout most of the blade. Creating these rough use Brute de Forge knives has become an almost meditative process. It brings a more intimate understanding of blade and edge geometry through the pursuit of perfectly forged bevels. It hones the basic forging techniques that support exploration and greater ambition in the forgings undertaken at Arachne Forge.
For the handle of each knife a piece of stabilized wood is chosen to suit the blade. When sourcing wood, sustainability is supported whenever possible. Working with local arborists and wood suppliers ensures that regionally renewable materials are used. These blocks of wood have been resin impregnated in a vacuum chamber to ensure longevity and durability. The resin fills all the cavities and natural capillaries of the wood, forcing out any moisture to produce a more atmospherically stable material.
These blocks are then laminated to leather liners to seal the divide between steel and wood and secured with bronze pins. Hand sculpting forms the flowing ergonomic handles that offer supple hand comfort along with intuitive edge indexing and positive grip. This rugged and classic construction offers a durable weatherproof handle which captures the beauty that only natural materials can achieve. Arachne Forge Brut de Forge Utility knives are equally ready for the excitement of adventure or the familiarity of daily utility.
Care and Use
Arachne Forge knives are made of carbon steel. This gives them increased edge retention over stainless steel, but also means they require more care in cleaning and storage than their stainless counterparts. Arachne Forge knives should NEVER be put in a dishwasher, or left to air dry. This cannot be stressed enough. In reality, you should never put any knife you care about in the dishwasher. You will notice immediate reductions in edge retention as the extreme high temperatures of the washer effect the temper of the blade. You will also notice irreparable damage to the fit of the handle as the same high temperatures and soaking water destroy the work that went into the handle preparation. You will also most likely see the appearance of rust on the blades as well. Again, DO NOT EVER put your knives in the dishwasher.
To clean a carbon steel knife simply wash it with a little warm water and dish soap, and wipe it dry with a clean towel. During the first few months of use it is also recommended that users store their knife with a small coat of food safe oil such as camellia oil or food grade mineral oil to protect the steel as a natural patina develops. Of course, extra diligent users may continue this practice in perpetuity if they wish. It never hurts.