I think I actually get more excited when a used knife comes in the mail than when I get a brand new one.
Don’t get me wrong, I love scoring a pristine example from a major retailer. There is definitely something to being the first owner of a new blade.
I gotta be honest, sometimes I find it hard to put those first bits of scratches into a blade and I’ll admit more than a few knives are sitting on my shelf as pseudo-safequeens, and that stinks.
But when I grab a new-to-me blade, it already has a history, it already has some story to it, and that tough little bubble of pristine-untouchable has already been popped. Even when the blade is completely unused, for some reason I find that I have no issues putting the thing to hard use... and loving it.
Neurotic? Debatably. But you can’t deny it. Has anyone ever involuntarily safequeened a used knife? No way. Barring collector sales, I suppose.
Pile onto that the unreal deals you can get, and you have a recipe for a massive collection of awesome users that you actually put through the paces and (as much as I enjoy the collecting aspect) that’s where the real fun is.
I remember this one time I bought a construction worker’s Griptilian. Dang this thing was beat up. Dirty, gritty, dinged up, scratched up, you name it. I got it for twenty bucks! Then I disassembled it, cleaned it up, mirror polished the washers, sent it out for some CF scales, oh, and I also satin sanded the blade. That was several years ago and I still carry that knife almost daily. It looks and runs like a Gold Class... for twenty bucks (plus the scales).
That’s the beauty of knives: new or used, they’re the ultimate simple tool, and even if one blade has had twenty owners, if you look after that thing, it’ll look after you.
Until next week, gents. I’m off to put this Steel Will Tenet I just picked up to the test. Budget blades with D2 steel? Yes please!