Written by Maria Zarah

Steve Bliss – Signature – BT-247

We make a knife we call the BT-247. It’s a great skinner that was inspired by a client who works at Buffalo Trace Distillery. It is one of our best sellers as it is a great EDC that works well on so many fronts. Well the other day I was looking at that knife design and starting wondering if I could improve on if and make a compact gut hook model.  So I began to get dirty.
In good conscious I must disclose my personal views on gut hooks.  I don’t care for them.  I grew up gutting using a blade between my fingers and I always will.  That’s not to say that the hook doesn’t work, it does  but it needs to maintained well and to do that takes a patient sort of fellow who bought a gut hook sharpener like this here.   Moving on…

I started with our BT-247 template and laid out  the hook placement then drilled and formed the blade accordingly. Once I had the form and grind in place I acid etched the Damascus. I’m a fan of the firestorm pattern so that is what I used.  Once I etched it I saw a couple spots I wasn’t happy with so I remanded the blade. While sanding I had an idea. I have been playing with a way to infuse copper into the high nickel content areas of the blade and thought I’d give it a go on this one.  Seems to have turned out well.  I buffed the steel pretty hard to check the depth of penetration and I think I’m onto something interesting.  Traditional Damascus is cool and draws a lot of attention to a nice knife but this is a “double take” sort of attention.  I’ll be interested in your feedback.

For the handle I wanted something unique.  I have a personal bag of rare woods I have been toting around from country to country so I dumped out my stash on the shop table and see what might work.  There was this one piece that I found somewhere that escapes my mind.  It s so old it sounds like a piece of steel when you tap on it.  Almost petrified. I think it was from Africa and is some form of black ebony. Anyway, I cut and worked it into submission to the form of the knife.

To pin this thing I decided to use 5/32″ diameter brass.  I like the subtle approach personally and I tend toward the classic style in my work.

This one of a kind exotic knife is listed for sale here. Feel free to contact me if you want something custom as I enjoy designing for the needs of our clients.

I’ll place some images below of the process and knife for your viewing pleasure.  I hope you like the outcome.

 

 

 

Written by Maria Zarah

Sharpening your knife.

Our clients often ask for recommendations on sharpening knives; here is some beneficial information with hot links.

Many think they know how to sharpen a knife. Some do; most don’t really understand the science. If you want a good edge that will last, you must consider certain things. Most important in this deliberation is how you intend to use the knife. Purpose sets the angle of the grind. The chart below will help you determine the angle you want based on how you use your knife.

grind-angle-chart-copy

Grind-angle-chart-copy

Armed with the correct information, you can grind the knife at the appropriate angle for its job. Let me just say that a stone and free hand is not the way to go. If you free hand sharpen on a stone, good luck. As a human being, you cannot maintain the consistency needed. Your grind angle will inevitably differ from side to side and point to bolster. You can make it sharp enough but never as sharp as it should get. This performance gap comes from that human-induced variable angle. Frankly, your lifetime heirloom will always fall short of its true potential. At Bliss Knife Works we recommend a knife sharpening kit from Edge Pro. This simple system allows you to set the bevel you need and sharpen precisely with ease. A home use model costs around $165.00; use it once and you will never use anything else. Folks tell us that using this equipment helped them find true love, peace, and contentment–maybe even eternal salvation. That may be a stretch–we cannot verify how their love lives are going–but the knife sharpening kit from Edge Pro is definitely game changer.

A couple more tips to help you.

First, a knife steel is not supposed to sharpen a knife edge. Its purpose is to knock off the dings on the edge of a junk steel knife and make it relatively straight again. If you have a knife made of good steel you won’t need one. Most knives are made from soft junk steel. Do your homework and get a good set of knives. Remember, your decisions not only affect you but all the people around you. Please, for the sake of those around you who you love, buy good knives.

Have you ever seen someone spit on a sharpening stone and then start grinding away? Don’t be that guy. If you are sharpening a Damascus or high carbon steel knife use a cutting oil that is either petroleum based or one that contains rust inhibitors. Water–and that includes spit–will cause corrosion and rust.

The best way to see if you are getting your bevel correct or sharpening the bevel to the edge is to mark the bevel edge with a sharpie marker. This way you can see what areas are actually being removed when you are sharpening. When you grind the marker off completely you are done.

marker-edge

 

 

Also, on a traditional 50/50 bevel you should count how many time you run the stone over the edge per side. Be sure to apply the same pressure and do equal passes per side. If you are really serious, you should use an eye magnifier so you can truly see what you are doing to the edge. For about $10.00 you can add professional precision to your sharpening work.

If you take our advice your life will forever be changed for the better. Remember, a knife that isn’t sharp is dangerous!

Cut on friends!

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Written by Maria Zarah

Serious Collector

We would like to extend a special thanks to Paul Phillips, he is one of many well loved clients here. He owns more Bliss Knives than anyone else. The photo shown is the majority of his collection. It is still missing around 4 more knives. We are grateful to have clients like this. We love every one of you!

Written by Maria Zarah

Chef Chris Young

Meet the Chef behind the D2 Stainless Bliss set. Chris is a very well known Chef in Panama and we were very interested in working with him on creating a new knife set. He preferred the D2 stainless since it is lower maintenance, when you work in a kitchen as busy as his you need knives that can take punishment. Soon Bliss Knife Works will be unveiling a food blog where Chefs such as Chris and others will be posting their work and recipes for all to read. They will provide you with professional to improve your performance in the kitchen. The kitchen set is available on our website for order.

Written by Maria Zarah

Happy clients, happy employees.

We have been receiving amazing feedback from everyone ordering knives. We are so thrilled to provide a wonderful product that people will be able to enjoy for a lifetime. We have loved reading the testimonials and reviews clients have provided. It truly means the world to us here. Thank you all! Below is one we recently received. Carl now owns a full Bliss set.

Recently I started researching for a good set of Knives for my kitchen, the company “Bliss” kept coming up in my searches. When I started my reviews of them I liked everything I was reading, and compared to other knife companies, in my opinion they seemed be superior. Since my son in laws birthday was coming up I decided to use him as a guinea pig. WOW, is he ever getting a great birthday present; and I am ordering myself a nice set of 4, which I want.

High quality, great warranty, custom made when you order, razor sharp, Damascus steel, and aesthetics beyond anything I had seen. When I received my knife it was beyond my expectations, the balance for the chefs knife was just perfect in my hand. My dealings with Bliss weret he way customer service should be, we exchanged several emails and they were answered in a very timely fashion, something you don’t see much of today. They checked in with me several times to make sure I would receive my knife before my son in laws birthday. Delivered two days earlier than they originally said it would be.

On a scale of 1-10 they are a 10+, one of the best companies I have dealt with in a long time and a quality product. Don’t let price scare you, worth every penny you spend on their knives.

I would rate this company and knife—5 stars.

Carl Sale

Written by Maria Zarah

Benefits of Damascus Blades

From a view of strength and durability, such a multi-layer structure as Damascus can not simply be said “no meaning”.

Before discussion of Damascus, we have to start from the benefit of multi-layer blades. The benefit of the sandwiching structure is to strike a balance both the harder & sharper edge and better durability of the entire blade.
The most simple multi-layer blades have a three layer structure, made of a hard steel core that is sandwiched by soft (resilient) steel so that the hard core is exposed only at the cutting edge. That realizes better durability or chip-resistance.
* Hard steel core is generally easier to be chipped, that’s why the sandwich structure can be a good solution.

One of the applied approach of the multi-layer blades eventually leads to a Damascus pattern. Therefore, such a multi-layer structure can not simply be said “no meaning“ from a view of strength and durability. Many sandwich outer layers covering the center core realize the unique Damascus pattern for each knife. You can get only one design of the blade in the world. Therefore Damascus knives are much recommended as a gift as well as just for better cooking or hunting experience. One demerit of the Damascus knives is the cost because of additional production process.

So now you see why Damascus is recommended for a better cooking or hunting experience. It takes the best and worst qualities of different kinds of steel and uses them to create a stronger, more durable knife. All of our blades are made as described above, hence the higher pricing. It takes countless hours of labor to produce one single blade, but a lifetime guarantee can ensure that your money is well spent. If you have yet to own a well made, hand crafted Bliss knife we urge you to order today. We will make sure you are satisfied in every way possible.

 

Credit for the article above goes to sushiknife.jp

Written by Maria Zarah

Beyond the Blades

For years now we Bliss boys have taken an intentional approach to finding and living a balanced life. Part of that balance is giving back to those who, for some reason, have missed the developed world simply by their birth location. Last week I, Steve, traveled to the Republic of Panama to install a clean water system to a small village on an island in the Caribbean. An organization named Give and Surf connected us to this village and their needs. I evaluated the village a couple months ago and spoke with the village leaders. (As a quick aside, it was on this trip that I developed the idea which is now the Panachete. It’s an over the top amazing machete that is unlike any other. You can check it out here.)  The village is occupied by 100 plus adults and children.  Unlike all of us, they have never had clean drinking water accessible to them at their homes or even close to their homes.

24-community-PresBack Story

Ten years ago this particular village had sold off the bulk of their land for a minimal price and the promise from the new owners that they would provide them with clean water and electricity.  Ten years later, two months ago, I was discussing this in the village with frustrated villagers who assumed I was just another gringo making empty promises.  Sad to say, broken promises come far to often from us affluent. I suppose we all need the reminder once in a while to guard our words and make sure they count.

Our Work

bnss-icon-rgbI’m affiliated with an organization called Basic Needs, Simple Solutions Inc.  We focus on, as the name says, the basics.  Food, water, air and health. Basic human rights.  In addition to my love for making amazing knives, BNSS is a vehicle that allows me to fill another love of mine, that of being a beneficial human helping humanity. I find it helps me to keep perspective in my life.  I know how good we have it and I never want to take that for granted. If you get a chance and wouldn’t mind, like us on facebook and tell your friends to do the same.  You can see our facebook page here. We depend on donations as any not for profit however, currently, we take no salaries from the organization so all proceeds go to making high impact life changes to those who could use a leg up. If you’d ever like to volunteer with us let us know.

The Project

schoolThis was a straight forward project. They had a source of clean water defined and all we needed to do was connect the dots.  There were three volunteers, including myself, Ed and Nic, which isn’t much but this was because we had decided to employ the locals to assist us.  The rational was simple; 1, they have a vested interest and 2, if they build the system they will not only know all the moving parts and their locations but also learn how to maintain the system. I prefer to empower people rather than give hand outs.

Thanks to Emily, of Give and Surf, the bulk of the materials were already on site so we could hit the ground running. The first day we began building an addition on the local school which will be used as a cafeteria.  Our volunteer Ed and I got the wood structure up and the rest of the week the local help finished the sheet metal and cement work while Ed and I laid out the water system. The water system required us to install a holding tank on a high hill where the water source would flow and fill.  The tank acts as a reserve.  From there we ran a two inch main line down the hill to the village. The tank elevation was about 100 feet above sea level and the village homes were at sea level. A quick rule of thumb for water pressure is for every 1 foot of drop you gain about 1/2 pound of pressure thanks to pipelinegravity. The locals ended up with about 50 pounds of pressure at their homes and, if they’re like me, I’m sure they want good water pressure for their showers. Nothing worse than taking a shower with a dribble of water pressure. Oh wait, lest we forget, there are no showers here and we are only providing a tap for drinking water.  I guess there is something worse than low water pressure in the shower…

The main line had multiple shut of valves installed before each cluster of homes.  This way if/when there are maintenance needs the line segments can be isolated and not everyone loses water.  From the main we ran a feed line to each house.  Now they can fill their buckets right outside their doors rather than a long way off.

We did this project really fast.  We had great help from the locals and great support from Give and Surf.  I found working with the locals created a great sense of comradery as we had a common goal.  I truly enjoyed this experience.  I think we’ll use this approach in the future. For a volunteer it makes the experience more intimate as they work hand and hand with someone who has a very different life experience.

In the end, it gives you a great feeling of satisfaction seeing the people turning on their water tap and having water right there in front of them that they can drink. Their happiness is abundant.  As my friends at Panama Joe’s Coffee always say, “Happiness is a commodity” and on this trip we were able to pass that commodity around to others.

I wouldn’t be a real not for profit if I didn’t close with this; if you want to be a part of our work please like us on facebook, check out or site and donate/volunteer if you have time and resources. Together we can make the world a better place.  Here are some pics of the trip below.

Godspeed,

Steve

Written by Maria Zarah

More Handcrafted Designs

As you may have seen, we recently introduced a limited design we call the Toucan. This really has been an amazing example of just what we are capable of doing in our knives. We spend countless hours on each knife to make sure they look their very best. There are only five of the Toucan designs made, two of which are already sold. We are so joyed to have clients own something that we put our heart into.

Written by Maria Zarah

We at Bliss Knife Works are working on a signature Pirate knife selection, we will feature larger, more exotic blades that will reflect the old pirate ways. The knives will most likely be larger. We can’t wait to unveil more designs!

Written by Maria Zarah

Check Ins

After checking in with some of our clients thye have reported that the knives are worth every penny they spent! Owning good kitchen knives is an investment for any cook or even professional Chef. That is why when you invest in a Bliss knife, you’re investing right!

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