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Marking Test Knives?

#1 User is offline   Rick Baum 

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Posted 05 June 2011 - 05:35 PM

I know that the topic of what will and will not pass the JS test in regards to the 5 knives for judging has been beaten to death but I have a question that I don't think has been covered...

Years ago I started marking my knives by having them scratch engraved. I know that that the 5 knives have to be sole authorship... does that go as far as marking them as well? If so, I suppose I could fire up the old Electro-chem etcher or see if my engraver will allow me to run the scratch engraver... Thoughts?
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#2 User is online   BrionTomberlin 

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Posted 05 June 2011 - 08:17 PM

Hello Rick. I believe that you have to do it yourself. The guidelines state that all work on a knife should be sole authorship, including engraving. The main things are that the mark be legible and be the same on all five knives. I think the mark should be professional looking. I use an etcher as it gives me consistent marks on all knives.

I hope this helps and good luck.

Brion
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#3 User is offline   Rick Baum 

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Posted 06 June 2011 - 05:41 PM

Thanks Brion... I figured as much but thought I'd play Devil's Advocate for everyone's benefit. Knowledge is power, or in this case, possibly the difference between a stamp or no stamp.

So, to continue the Devil's Advocate role... I assume that most knives that are presented for judging are etched or stamped, so scratch engraving would stand out in the crowd so-to-speak. I would guess that the candidate would be interviewed before passing final judgment, assuming all else in regards to the knives passed muster. Sound right?
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#4 User is online   BrionTomberlin 

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Posted 06 June 2011 - 08:52 PM

Yes Rick, there is that possibility. You may be asked if you did the engraving and to elaborate on how you did it. At least one of the judges is an excellent engraver. It would be different, since most marks are stamped or etched as you stated.

I am not going to say we will ask you, but you never know. I hope this answers your question. Good luck and we will see you there.

Brion
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#5 User is offline   Ed Caffrey 

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Posted 07 June 2011 - 05:54 AM

My input from being a judge.....the knife really should be marked, and it must be of a quality to match/enhance the knives. I can remember one of my early judging jobs at the JS level....an individual's knives were "borderline" and he had not marked them at all. A comment from one of the other judges was "He must not think much of his knives if he's not willing to put him name on them", and that fact pushed him to the fail side.

It's all about professionalism once your testing for the JS level, not only in your knives, but how you present them, and yourself. Personally, I would discourage "scratch" marking, but that's just me.
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#6 User is offline   Rick Baum 

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Posted 07 June 2011 - 04:36 PM

Thanks Brion and Ed... That's great feedback for all of us that are hoping to jury knives one day! Hopefully someone besides me will benefit from this conversation. Thank you both for taking the time to give your input and share your experience. Not to mention putting up with "the Devil's advocate" in me. As far as I'm concerned, scratch engraving is definitely out for the test knives. Sounds a little too risky for me.

Like the performance knife test... I used the proven 5160 forging and HT recipe that has worked for so many before me (essentially what is posted on your site ED)... Guess what... It worked for me too. I learned a valuable lesson from it!

I'll stick with what is recomended and has worked for so many other before me. There's too much at stake when you factor all the time, energy and financial expenses of testing.

Thanks again for your input guys!
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#7 User is offline   Rick Baum 

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Posted 07 June 2011 - 04:43 PM

Ed,

As I re-read your comments, another question comes up. You mentioned that it's not just about how my knives are presented but how I present myself as well. Sounds like I'd better shower and shave before showing up to present knives... :) I get what your saying though. You summed it up when you used the term "professionalism". Yet another insightful clue to those of us apiring to test for our ratings.

Thanks again!
Rick
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