Eric & Tom, thank you for your posts.
Phil, yes this is the knife that Tom recently sold for a friend.
Wikipedia says there have been 2 types of wildebeest fossils found in South Africa, some is 800,000 yrs old and others are 2-3,000,000 years old.
The mammoth tusk we have on our knives is not fossilized. It has been preserved by being in soil of the correct chemistry and the surface has taken on various minerals giving it color.
These wildebeest handles were bone not tooth substance. I say "were bone" because i think they are a true fossil, i.e. all of the features like cell walls, marrow etc have been replaced by minerals, so it now is a rock.
In addition to the rich colors the other outstanding feature of these wildebeest handles is how sublimely smooth the surface is, like glass.
Eric do you know if this wildebeest fossilized bone cut like stone ? or softer like ivory or mammoth ivory ?
And how easy or difficult was it to bring out this perfectly shiny smooth surface ?
This is the second knife i have thanks to Mr. Buley. The first is the 2006 Folding Hunting Knife which Mr. Buley i believe designed and built. He even came back to work after he had retired to do a little 'tune up' on my '06 Folding Hunting knife.
Eric i guess the picture is from late 1970's to early '80's ? Are you in this picture ?