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Southeast Kansas man forges custom made knives - KOAM TV 7

Southeast Kansas man forges custom made knives

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A Columbus, Kansas man has turned the hobby of knife making into a profitable business.

Phil Evans says he crafted his first knife back in 1995 and hasn't stopped yet.

"I grabbed a file and a deer antler and I ground it down and put the handle on there and I really enjoy doing it," Evans says.

Evans says he read about the craft to learn more about it.

"It's just something that kind of got started with me and it got in my blood and I just love it.  I'd rather be pounding out steel than doing about anything."

Customers will often place custom orders and come to the shop to watch Evans work.

"I like people to come to the shop if they want to, if they are local, and they can actually hold their handle material in their hand and really find something that fits them perfectly," he says.  "I can put a certain kind of file work on it or different pattern of damascus. The damascus is technically laminated steel, and I use a carbon steel mixed with another carbon steel that's got a higher chromium content and then when I etch the blade after I make my design in it and forge it, the etchant that I use darkens the carbon steel but the part with the chromium or the stainless is left bright so that's what give it the contrast.  You see the design start to come out in it, and after about 10 minutes I'd really, really pop."

Evans recently discovered a knife he crafted in the 2013 World's Greatest Knife Book.

"I did not know I had a knife in here, and I was looking at this page - I saw this blade and I thought 'man, I made some damascus that looked a lot like that' and I got to looking at the handle and was like 'man, that is my knife' and saw my name in there, so that was quite a surprise.

"Several people asked me if they asked my permission to put it in there and I said they don't have to ask my permission, anytime they want to put it in their book they are more than welcome."

Evans says he's currently working toward his Journeyman Smith Honor in the American Bladesmith Society and hopes to one day become a Master Bladesmith.

To learn more about Evans and his work visit http://www.glenviewforge.com/.
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