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Date Published: 2022-08-22

Collection Knives Make A Great Investment


Collection Knives Make A Great Investment

By Adelia Ladson

If you’re a knife collector, you already know this but if you’re not or are just starting in knife-collecting, most likely you don’t. Knives make a great investment because, as long as you take care of them, they don’t lose their value. A high-quality, collectible knife will also be functional and not just for show. So, to assure that you are buying a knife worthy enough to make the cut (pun totally intended) as one of your collection knives, make sure that the blade is sharp and sturdy. Below are a few collectible lines and some examples of their products for you to consider investing in. And, if you’re an experienced collector, make sure that these knives make your list of must-haves.

Hibben Knives

A true knife-enthusiast will more than likely know the name Gil Hibben. He is a legend and a respected elder of the knife-design and crafting world who has created some of the most widely recognized and sought-after knives in the industry today. He has more than 60 years of experience putting out a line of knives that are made for hard, everyday use but look exceptional with premium materials and absolute attention to detail. It’s hard to choose which of Hibben’s masterpieces to feature because his body of work is so vast, but here are three that showcase the variety that you’ll find.

Legionnaire Bowie

The Legionnaire Bowie is a fine example of the classic Hibben survival-style knife. As a former Alaskan hunting guide, he really knows what you need in a knife to face the wilderness and elements. The premium stainless steel blade is a beast at 9 1/2” and the guard is hefty to offer protection against your fingers slipping to the blade. The black, pakkawood handle is finger-grooved for a slip-free grip and the beefy pommel is also premium stainless steel. A leather belt sheath is included to carry the monster in, and the overall length of the bowie is 14 7/10”. No one knows about practical everyday knife use like Gil Hibben.

Folding Cleaver Knife

Although, Hibben is known mostly for his fixed blade knives, he has crafted some incredible folding knives, too. The Folding Cleaver Knife is one of my favorite Hibben pocket knives. It puts the chopping power of a full-size cleaver right in your pocket and its black, patterned Micarta handle scales give it a sleek and upscale look. The cleaver blade is made of premium stainless steel and its dimensions are 3 7/8” in length by 1 3/4” in width with a flipper for easy deployment. The handle is curved to fit comfortably in your palm and the liners are bead-blasted stainless steel. The pocket clip is stamped with the Hibben Knives logo, and it’s built to stand-up to everyday carry.

Old West Sword Cane

I know it’s not a knife, but I had to include the Old West Sword Cane because it just makes a great collectible but make no mistake, it’s not just a display piece. The almost 15”, in length, premium stainless steel blade is sharp and ready-to-defend. The shaft is a smooth, classy black wood and the handle is black linen Micarta with a chrome-finished cast metal grip that has a gold-plated inlay. The sword’s blade, which features diamond-back filework can be released with just the push of a button and locks securely into the cane’s shaft. The 36 1/2” overall Gil Hibben Old West Sword Cane makes an excellent self-defense weapon!

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Kissing Crane Knives

When I think of Kissing Crane Knives, what comes to my mind is a candy store of trappers in a mouthwatering parade of colors, textures and themes. The company’s trapper pocket knives have become some of the most popular collection knives on the market. You’ll find them in an array of designs including holiday-themed, historical tributes, hobby-themed and American worker tributes. With a long history of exceptional craftsmanship, the brand was founded in 1834, Kissing Crane is known for using premium handle materials like burnt bone, exotic woods and abalone with accents like marble, mother-of-pearl and brass. It has become the brand to rely on, rising to the forefront of knife collections for its high-quality pocket knives. In addition to the trappers, Kissing Crane also puts out exquisite stiletto knives, classic lockback knives and fun little leg knives.

Lineman Trapper Knife

Like I said above, Kissing Crane has trapper pocket knives that pay tribute to American workers in a variety of jobs and industries. The Lineman Trapper Knife honors those brave men and women who risk their lives to keep us all powered up! From the stainless steel clip and spey blades to the handle scales, the trapper has lineman-themed artwork and text, “When the Lights Go Out, So Do They” and “Lineman Lighting America”. The scales are crafted of black bone with accents of yellow resin, pearlized exotics and fileworked stainless steel. The pocket knife also has brass liners and a nickel silver bolster on each end with one individually serialized.

Leg Pocket Knife

And, yes, I had to include the Pearl Leg Pocket Knife here. The handle is in the shape of a woman’s high-heeled clad leg crafted with white pearl composite scales and brass bolsters with one sculpted in the shape of a woman’s pump. The clip point blade is stainless steel, and it has a nail nick for manual opening. The leg knife also features brass pins and the Kissing Crane shield marking it as authentic.

Abalone Stiletto Knife

The genuine abalone handle scales make Kissing Crane’s Abalone Stiletto a work of art with its purple, blue and green watercolor hues. The scales are really set-off by the polished brass bolsters and pins. Further complementing the handle, the 4 1/4” stiletto blade is of Damascus steel, and it finishes in a penetrating point. The stiletto also has a bolster that is individually serialized, and the Kissing Crane medallion logo inset into the handle.

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Contender Knives

The Contender Knives line may not seem like a collection knife candidate but the modern, innovative design that they offer is definitely display-worthy. For ten years, with its cutting-edge ball-bearing opening mechanism and state-of the-art materials, the brand has performed toe-to-toe with some of the most expensive pocket knives in the industry. The beauty is that you won’t pay the expensive price that you would for other high-end, high-functioning pocket knives. Contender Knives uses premium materials like D2 tool steel but still prices its knives way below their total value. The brand offers upscale shapes and sizes with an array of blade profiles from cleaver and stiletto to upswept and straight back, all technically advanced. Contender Knives don’t just contend - they conquer!

Volantes Pocket Knife

The Volantes Pocket Knife has a handle that’s as sleek in form as a raven’s wing. A combination of black G10 and carbon fiber was used to craft the aerodynamic handle scales, which are secured with brass screws. The advance engineering of its smooth, ball-bearing opening mechanism allows you to quickly deploy the CNC-ground, D2 tool steel blade with a brass thumbstud. At 4 1/2”, when closed, the cutting edge pocket knife slips easily into your pocket, secured with its sturdy metal pocket clip.

Engineer Pocket Knife

When I say this next knife is lightweight, it’s no joke! The Contender Engineer Pocket Knife is just 3.2 ounces, making it a must-have addition to the tools and gear that you use on a daily basis. Even though, it has an ultra slimline profile, and the handle scales are entirely skeletonized, the advanced engineered pocket knife is up to hard use. The handle is made of stainless steel with G10 scales, and it features a pop of color with blue metallic accents. The 3 1/2” CNC-ground, D2 tool steel blade is razor-sharp and also opens with a ball-bearing mechanism. The blue is carried through to the pocket clip. You will actually forget that the Engineer is even in your pocket, but it will be there ready to work.

Graviton Pocket Knife

Tackling the toughest jobs in the harshest conditions, the Graviton Pocket Knife has no limits on what cutting job it can perform. From everyday cutting tasks around the home or farm to rigorous chores in remote back country, it’s built for hard use over the long haul. Like the other Contenders on this list, it has a straight-backed, D2 tool steel blade that’s been CNC-ground and it can be deployed with a flipper to activate its ball-bearing opening system. The liner lock assures that the blade stays locked into position during use and the handle is contoured and finely textured for a no-slip grip. Raw G10 was used to craft the handle scales, giving it a lightweight feel without sacrificing strength and durability. At 5" closed, it’s comfortably sized for everyday carry and stays secure with the integrated steel pocket clip.

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KA-BAR Knives

With quite a long and successful track record, KA-BAR Knives has been putting out quality knives since 1898 and each undergoes testing to ensure corrosion resistance, strength, edge holding ability, and an out-of-the-box razor sharp cutting edge. However, what really put them on the map was the combat knife, made in Olean, N.Y., for the United States Marine Corps and first introduced in W.W.II. As the war continued, these knives became so recognized for their quality and so many in number that “Kabar” became the name that this particular style of knife was known as. KA-BAR has continued to put out a line of knives that are the favorites of survivalists, outdoor sportsmen and adventurers and it’s still in action today at home and on foreign shores.

KA-BAR 120TH Anniversary USMC Knife

Of course, the first on the list is the 120th Anniversary USMC Knife, a special edition of the iconic original. What is most recognizable and associated specifically with the “Kabar” knife is the stacked, polished leather handle. The genuine leather ages and wears well and the deep grooves make the handle grippy, especially, in wet environments. The 1095 carbon steel clip point blade has been gun-blued for rust and corrosion-resistance and it features a laser-etched “KA-BAR”, a roaming bear and “The Union” shield, all presented in a Victorian-era style logo. The steel butt cap is hefty enough to do duty as a hammering tool and the steel guard keeps your fingers from slipping to the blade. A leather belt sheath with extra heavy stitching and metal pin side reinforcements lets you carry it easily by your side and it features the official USMC logo.

KA-BAR U.S. Army Knife

The Marines were not the only ones to adopt the tried and true combat knife. The U.S. Army “Kabar” Knife has the same design and dimensions as the original USMC knife with the addition of partial serrations on the blade. These serrations were added for the tasks of cutting synthetic and looped materials out in the field. The leather belt sheath has “U.S. Army” and the Army’s official logo stamped on it.

KA-BAR TDI Lady Finger Fixed Blade

I included the KA-BAR TDI Lady Finger Fixed Blade because it’s design is just so different than what you think of when you hear the word “Kabar”. Thanks to John Benner, a 33-year veteran police lieutenant, who understands what makes a knife effective for close-quarters defense, this low-profile fixed blade for law enforcement, military and security personnel was born. The knife can be drawn quickly and efficiently in times of duress because it’s compact and nimble so that it presents many options. The 1 7/8”x 1” drop point blade is made of AUS 8A stainless steel, giving it a 57-59 HRC, and it is hollow ground. The distinctively curved Zytel handle has heavy texturing for a slip-free grip, and it is secured to the full tang with heavy-duty screws. The knife comes with an adjustable hard plastic sheath and clip that allows for a variety of carry options

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