Originally posted by cas:
^ I don't see the Hibben name and think quality hand made knives, I think of sad ugly junk.
And for most of the last 60 or so years, you'd be wrong. Only in recent years when his wife and sons got involved has the quality deteriorated. Literally all his early knives were well made and mostly nice to look at. Lets not limit it to knives, either. I've got a great cane he made long ago. Very well made with a nice blade hidden inside. His work wasn't factory built. Early work was hand made by him. Well made, using quality "ingredients". But you've got to look and know what you're seeing.
One such instance was at a knife show. A guy had a box of knives. All sorts of them of every imaginable description. My eyes fixed on one particular example. Not nearly as large or flashy as the others, but clearly of his style. Time passed and I saw an ad in the paper (you know it was long ago because they still published those.} A guy was opening a new store and Gil himself was going to be there promoting products with his name on them. So I went and got in the "line" with guys/fools buying the newest fancy show knives. One unusually bright guy at the front of the line asked him about his custom knives. Gil apparently had been looking at the others (I was clearly the only oldie and obviously out of place). He said that if the others didn't mind, they needed to move me up front so they could see what I'd brought along.
The purpose of the "show" was so fools could buy fantasy knives from the store. So up the 5 or 6 people I moved. He said " what'cha got there". So I said to ask him the same question. He said he'd only made one set of steak knives, and this was one out of the set. He'd made them for Steve McQueen, and it was long ago. He had no idea how the set got broken up, but he assumed after the actors death. Then everyone was interested, but they really wanted the latest fantasy offering.
So educate yourself on his early knives and look at the knives at flea markets, yard sales, knife shows. Often others just pass over used or worn or not glamorous things for glitzy crap (the kind you think of when you hear his name.} The same thing goes for other off brand stuff like Randall.
Unhappy ammo seeker