kootenay joe wrote:John, you have Beautiful knives !
And Thanks for explaining the 15's. I think i now understand (somewhat): The #15 pattern has been made in so many variations that there are dedicated pattern 15 collectors. Only by being 'dedicated' can you know of every run of pattern 15 and which ones are harder to find. It is these dedicated 15 collectors who bid against each other and account for the very high prices for the rarer ones. It is not someone like myself who does not know an average 15 from a rare 15 who is bidding high, just the 'specialists'.
Is there a name for the blade that looks like a slender Sheepsfoot ? ( pic of 3 one of which has a 'scratted-like' handle)
I'm quite new to AAPK, but I've been collecting GECs for several years now. I think some people refer to these slender sheepfoots as a "lambfoot" blade. I'm not sure if that's a term that has a history or even much traction, but it seems like a name used with some degree of consistency.
It also looks like you've had a lot of responses about your #15 question. I might only add that I think a mid-sized sleeve board is just very appealing to a lot of people. But almost always, a #15 barlow from GEC will just plain be more sought-after than some other kind of #15 (obviously there are exceptions). The point I'm trying to get a here is that, for some reason, there has been barlow-mania the past few years. In my humble opinion, there is little practical difference between a "TC" barlow and a "#15 Boys Knife" with a standard bolster. Is the barlow "stronger?" Sure, probably, that's the historical logic, anyway. But we're talking about traditional slipjoints, not tactical knives, so I think there is little difference. But I think there is a nostalgia that surrounds the barlow. Perhaps this is because you remember your grandfather used one or because you read about it a Mark Twain novel. For me, it just so happened that the first knife I ever bought (and subsequently lost) with my own money was a barlow. This, then, is why I believe the #15 barlow because more sought-after. Then, we people want something, it makes other people want it, even if they don't know why. What follows, then, is barlow-mania.
I think Charlie has done a a lot to the tubes and covers to make them a bit more collectible than other series. So that probably adds fuel.
As others mentioned, there are other sought-after #15s and the reasons can vary. People seem to love the stainless steel + elk, for example. Other knives, like the electrician knife are specialized and seemingly more rare compared to other large releases.
One thing I find fascinating about the barlows from GEC is that the break from normal conventions on them. Most every pattern is offered in a Tidioute trim and a Northfield trim. But the #15 barlow is ("seemingly") only a "TC" barlow...meaning Tidioute Cutlery. And the #77 barlow is only offered in a Northfield form. But if we look harder, things get a little more strange. The TC barlows are offered with both standard nail nicks AND the longpull and swedges that are normally reserved for Northfield versions. And the #77s have never really seen a Tidioute finish.
The easy response is to say this is because an individual paid for the tooling to be created, which is why Charlie Campagna has control over the TCs and Mike Latham over the NFs. But, still, there could have been a TC version of the #15 and a NF version of the #15. And the tooling for the bolster could have worked with both, only the engraving (or stamp?) would have been different. Same with the 77. I find it interesting that GEC diverted from their normal conventions on this one.
When we consider the #14 barlow and why there's been no SS barlow (a GEC version), the speculation continues.