Thursday, 17 December 2015

Mark Hill Knives: Raven Review


Been a while since I've had any custom cutlery pass though my hands but sometimes curiosity gets the better of me.  As I've proved with my own cackhanded efforts, any chump can make a passable cutting tool, designing a nice shape is a bit harder, and actually making them to a finish where you'd think twice about abusing them is a quantum leap on from there. Mark Hill has been making a name for himself showing his work on BCUK and BB, and very nice it looks too. When the chance to pick up a 'Raven' in a trade came up, I used it to kid myself I am actually getting rid of some of my hoard.

The Raven - its chunky

Mark Hill makes most of the classic blade shapes which chronicle the history of the survival knife.
I particularly like his 1800's Kephart,  from the last century he does a 'Woodlore' as popularised by Ray Mears, with this century represented by his homage to the Raven designed by Rob Bailey and popularised by well-known outdoor storyteller Bear Grylls.



For me the thumb ramp gives a slight ergonomic advantage to the shape, but must have been really tricky to do by hand. 


Finish and fit are pretty good, you've got to get very very close to see the slight by-hand imperfections that give the knife its sense of handmade by one maker.

A very ambitious join between the guard, blade and slabs. 

 Its a knife! How does it cut? 
Like a cutty thing on a cutty day.

I'm off to sift through my gear pile, trying to work out what I can bear to part with, this is supposed to be about minimalism NOT holding!

More soon
your pal
SBW


2 comments:

Phillip said...

Looks right nice!

Curious about that weight though... being here amongst the backwards and mathematically challenged (with reading glasses that are becoming less effective by the day). But it looks like you're showing 276 grams, which makes that over a half-pound handful of knife. "Chunky" is right!

Good luck downsizing the kit, by the way. Seems to me that every time I start down that path, I end up discovering more stuff that I need!

Ross Gilmore said...

I'm a big fan of Mark Hill. He made a custom knife for me a few years back (a Mora #2 full tang clone), and he did a great job at a great price. I didn't make it easy for him either; I had all sorts of specific changes I wanted from the basic Mora design. He did all of them perfectly, and the knife had been performing flawlessly.