When consumers want quality knives, they often consider the forged knife. This is a hand-crafted knife that is durable, holds a sharp edge and does not break. A good knife will last for a lifetime of household or field use.
A forged knife is a true example of blacksmith art, even on a large scale. A steel blank, or piece of steel, is heated in the forge. The maker then pounds the steel with a hammer, into the rough shape of a knife. It is heated again and more hammering follows. Several cycles of heating, cooling and hammering all serve to temper the steel and make the knife strong and not easily broken.
After the knife is completed to the maker’s specifications, it is ground from spine to edge, creating a tapered blade. The handle is attached to the tang, or the bottom part of the knife, and is riveted into place. Almost every forged knife has a bolster, or divider that separates the blade from the handle. The bolster may be for balance, as well, but this thickened part of the knife helps create a safety barrier between blade and fingers. Once the handle has been attached, the blade is then sharpened to a razor edge.
Because of the labor-intensive nature of its construction, a forged knife is often significantly more expensive than a stamped steel knife. And, when a high quality, high carbon stainless steel is used, the price also goes up. This method of construction is used in kitchen knives, as well as for hunting and field knives, and those made this way are often prized for their durability in all conditions, and for the ease with which they maintain a sharp edge. The other advantage is that most people can sharpen the knives themselves. Only minimal maintenance is required to keep a high carbon stainless steel forged knife in good condition.
Many consumers find a forged knife to be an invaluable addition to their knife sets. Their quality and durability usually justify their higher price.