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Old 08-30-2018, 11:13 AM   #1
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New Barge

My new Barge docked sometime this morning, I just found it in my mailbox. As a life long knife carrier I have to say this is one of the nicest working knives I've seen in a long time. Will it replace my EDC 4" Bear Ops automatic... no. I'll carry it in addition to the Bear Ops and it will do the grunt work that the Bear Ops normally would be subjected too. The 2 1/2" razor sharp chisel blade (what I call it) is disproportionate to the 4 1/2" body but that gives you a lot of solid gripping room. In addition to the ability to use the butt end to pry with it could prove to be a formidable striking weapon with the blade either opened or closed. As the owner of 4 other knives polished by Chico I would rate this barge as sharp as any of the others. For $40.00 this knife is a hell of a deal, along with the polished blade your getting Chico's "Life Sharp". When the blade dulls simply return it to him and he will re-polish it for you.
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Old 08-30-2018, 11:27 AM   #2
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Phewwww...I'm glad I got a good review. It sure beats the death threats!

Yes, those knives get "knife sharp" because the expectation (and I think Kershaw believes this, too) is that this is a working knife.

As you know, it has a following of two distinct groups--one is for women who seem to like the prying device, especially the girls at B&N who have to remove those big copper tables from the shipping boxes.

Then there are the outdoor and prepper guys. They want a knife that will never fail no matter what the terrain throws at them.

BTW, the Barge is made from the biggest fasteners I've ever seen on a knife. It's not going to fall apart without a fight.

Thanks for the test, Chuck. I hope the Barge serves you.
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Old 09-01-2018, 11:14 AM   #3
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Just returned home from a weeks vacation and found my knive delivered with the rest of the hold mail, thanks Chico.
This is one heck of a knife, looks to be way overbuilt, like a tank. I thought the kitchen knives you polished for me were sharp but this thing is amazingly sharp, be careful when you get yours. Will be my new carry knife with the added bonus of being passed down to my Grandson.
Thanks again Chico.
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Old 09-01-2018, 11:56 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Chuck43 View Post
My new Barge docked sometime this morning, I just found it in my mailbox. As a life long knife carrier I have to say this is one of the nicest working knives I've seen in a long time. Will it replace my EDC 4" Bear Ops automatic... no. I'll carry it in addition to the Bear Ops and it will do the grunt work that the Bear Ops normally would be subjected too. The 2 1/2" razor sharp chisel blade (what I call it) is disproportionate to the 4 1/2" body but that gives you a lot of solid gripping room. In addition to the ability to use the butt end to pry with it could prove to be a formidable striking weapon with the blade either opened or closed. As the owner of 4 other knives polished by Chico I would rate this barge as sharp as any of the others. For $40.00 this knife is a hell of a deal, along with the polished blade your getting Chico's "Life Sharp". When the blade dulls simply return it to him and he will re-polish it for you.
Chuck, I was a late starter, but I am catching up with you on Chico's knives -- I feel immensely fortunate to have obtained the two Charity Knives that Chico has poured so much work into. I too received my first Barge and I agree with you that the Barges are an incredible bargain. If the inventory doesn't run out, I have put my name in for another one! Looks like SnowTao will still be the leader in Chico knives, but who knows what he will come up with next for us to add to our collections?
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Old 09-01-2018, 12:21 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by CharlieW View Post
Looks like SnowTao will still be the leader in Chico knives, but who knows what he will come up with next for us to add to our collections?
I don't know what Snow has but my collection includes:

1 - Freescape Camp Kitchen Knife
2 - CRKT No Time Off's
1 - Bear OPS AC-551-B4-B Tactical Automatic Knife
1 - Zero Tolerance 0909 (serial #1911) that was a gift
1 - Barge


All good knives made better by Chico.
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Old 09-01-2018, 12:57 PM   #6
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Awesome - obviously you were one of the first to recognize Chico's genius.
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Old 09-01-2018, 01:53 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by CharlieW View Post
Awesome - obviously you were one of the first to recognize Chico's genius.
Charlie, you have to be the first one in the modern mechanized world to claim that a guy who "rubs stuff with a wet rock" is a genius.

Some day Rob Babcock is going to join this forum and find our knife section. The threads and posts will then begin, "Chico, can you get this knife to Rob..."

(While I was learning my craft the best polisher in the world, Dwade Hawley, got caught under his car in a snow storm, and had one of those nylon towing straps cut deeply into his bicep. He dropped out of sight until I found I had his telephone number. He decided to retire.

Rob Babcock is close to that excellence. Rob specializes in folded Japanese steel, which means he's skilled enough to sharpen your knife--while you're actually using it...

Ken Schwartz is not only skilled, but he knows stones by their smell. He's invented sharpening devices and is probably the most honest man I have ever met.

Ben Dale invented the Edge Pro, and Dwade and myself destruction tested many of the items polishers use to this day. He also loves to polish, and when he decided to retire he got two execs to run the company and assigned himself to the "shipping department." Besides sharpening, that's where he likes to be.

For my money, these are the best polishers in the United States and Canada.
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Old 09-01-2018, 03:53 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by The Tourist View Post
Ben Dale invented the Edge Pro, and Dwade and myself destruction tested many of the items polishers use to this day.
You use an Edge Pro and create finer edges than I ever will. Other guys rub their knifes on flat rocks freehand, and create finer edges than I ever will.

Why chose one method over another? Is it possible to switch back and forth between styles?
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Old 09-01-2018, 04:09 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by RustyIron View Post
Why chose one method over another? Is it possible to switch back and forth between styles?
I choose the Edge Pro first to even out the bevels. But to be honest, there's a lot of "body English" to my strokes. Sometimes I just use the Edge Pro like a little vice--and the scissors attachment.

Some clients sit at my kitchen table, drink coffee and laugh at me. To position myself correctly it looks like I'm tap-dancing.

But I also have a 3x9 Shapton stone, and some older HandAmerican fixtures. And yes, I cheat and go freehand. Two pennies help.

For example, Chuck sent me a bad knife but was very concerned about a pointed tip. I used the Edge Pro for about +75% at least, lots of black ink, and then some very fine polishing papers on the sides of the knife to completely erase all chips and burrs.

The point is pointy.

Now, if you ever watch a real Japanese togishi, you'll see tools, mica, wooden rods to straighten a bent blade, buckets of water, and once I thought I saw some form of dental tool. The togishi had a small piece of cardboard, and as the dental tool cut, he slid the cardboard back for a perfect line.

Now, I've talked to chefs who took there culinary training in Japan. But the Japanese cutlers usually get there katana metal from China.

Remember Clinton's chant, "It's the economy, stupid."

Well, my job as a polisher (that's higher than a tinker and lower than a togishi, BTW) is to repair the client's knife to the best possible edge I can create. So I tell myself, "Myself, polish the blade, stupid."

I have brackets made from discarded bronze door jambs. I made them for use as a third hand.
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Old 09-01-2018, 08:53 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Chuck43 View Post
I don't know what Snow has but my collection includes:
All good knives made better by Chico.
"Snow" has two ChicoBarges; soon to be joined by three more!

(Really, I finally understand the fascination -- and desire to carry! My sister, when she picked up my purse at the home where my mom is incarcerated, yelped with surprise! Was I carrying bricks!? Nope, gun and knife... and wallet and so on... -- but the weight is the defensive metals!)
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