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Old 04-11-2019, 10:03 AM   #1
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Yet another story.

Yes, I have loved switchblades for most of my life, but I never knew much about them. One day I asked my dad why all the really well-made ones were made primarily in the southern parts of Italy, and fishtails made in Sicily.

The Sicilian connection was easy. It wasn't just the thugs who carried them, but Sicily was big on commercial fishing. It was a local pride issue to make fishtails.

So I go to my dad and ask, "Why doesn't Poland make good knives?"

My dad chuckles and says, "Show me your knife. And remind me to punish you later for even owning that thing! I worked hard all my life so I wouldn't need things like that!"

The stiletto clicks open, and my dad adds, "Name the stuff that makes up a switchblade..."

I responded, "Well, I see a black bone handles, lots of steel, and brass liners..."

"Close enough," my dad says, "Do you also know who walked through that part of the world?"

I had no clue.

"Well, son," he grinned, "They were the bravest, most highly trained and dedicated American GIs we knew. I think Audie Murphy was one of them. They fought so hard that the entire scenery was a maze of dead cattle, trashed jeeps and millions of brass casings."

Then he continued, "The locals needed a product to sell to their rescuers. They made bone handles, sharpened and polished old jeep leaf springs and melted down scrounged brass. Every GI returning home had an Italian switchblade knife--hence the ridiculous 1950s movies..."

My dad handed me back the knife, "Truth comes with a price, Chico. For the next two weeks, you'll be drying dishes and cutting the lawn. By the way, nice knife..."
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Old 04-11-2019, 10:50 AM   #2
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Sorry for the poor photo.

It's dark here today, that drawer is part of an internal safe room.

While I am more apt to carry a Boker or Protech/Emerson switchblade, I still have my "first loves."

I have two 'nines.' One blonde, and of course, one with ebony bone.

Click on photo to enlarge.

DSC02571.JPG
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Old 04-11-2019, 10:56 AM   #3
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Here's better photograph. These knives always tug at the ol' nostalgia strings...

Click on the photo to enlarge.

DSC02572.JPG
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Old 04-11-2019, 05:03 PM   #4
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I've always been a fan.
My dad had a weird-ass leverlock switch he brought home from Thailand while he was stationed over there for 'nam, it was all I ever wanted to inherit from him as a kid and he finally passed it on to me when they downsized homes by about 2000sq' last year. I've never seen another one like it, but to be fair I've never done three seconds of looking. The blade seems low quality to me, and is stamped "NOIT". It's a strange, gaudy thing but I love it. Pretty gummed up and sad looking, what the hot rodders would call "patina". I'm not sure how to clean it up, or if I even want to, but every switchblade I see sparks a trickle of nostalgia in me, the feeling I had the first time I laid eyes on that knife as a wee laddy. I should do something with it. Or maybe not. Either way: dads, man!
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Old 04-11-2019, 05:14 PM   #5
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Strangely, I just got off the telephone with a guy I attended 7th grade with. We laughed about our stupid jokes, our skirt chasing and yes, those switchblade knives.

Drove my wife nuts, we talked for over an hour. BTW, my friend was a Cap'n Crunch enthusiast.

I see your typical black horn, Italian stiletto and it brings back all those old high school memories. Man, we must be getting old...
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Old 04-11-2019, 06:22 PM   #6
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Typical until it snaps open and there's a kriss blade. I'm not sure when those started showing up in Italian pushbuttons, or why I thought I needed to have one. I don't actually even like kriss blades. But, do I tend to get carried away with things.
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Old 04-11-2019, 07:01 PM   #7
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Hey, Chico. Here's those old switchblades I was telling you about. The bottom two are Milanese, from the 70's. I think they belong to Mrs. Iron so I have to put them back before she figures out I've been playing with them. The next is Taiwanese, from the 80's. It's probably the best of the bunch, but the Milanese ones have the characteristic guinea sound. The two top ones I didn't even bother to look at their origin. They're kinda junky. I bought an assortment of switchblades during that time period, just because I could and they were cheap.
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Old 04-12-2019, 05:45 AM   #8
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'Iron, I'll bet that if the members here admitted it, we all have little secret drawers with switchblades in them!

But here's the sad part. In my state of Wisconsin, switchblades have been legal for over a year! I don't have to hide them, I can set them out in the open on the coffee table!

...takes the real fun right out of 'em...
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Old 04-12-2019, 06:20 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by The Tourist View Post
...takes the real fun right out of 'em...
Yeah, Dick Marcinko let the air out of my sails when he said something to the effect that a real warrior needs the reliability of a manual knife. Now, when I carry a switchblade (and I have a couple nice ones), I'm always a bit ashamed and feel like a Kansas City Dandy (Not that there's anything wrong with being a Kansas City Dandy).
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Old 04-12-2019, 06:39 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by RustyIron View Post
Yeah, Dick Marcinko let the air out of my sails when he said something to the effect that a real warrior needs the reliability of a manual knife.
Yeah, I read the same book. However, time and tides have changed that knife. Let me explain.

When Marcinko's book was first written, Emerson was still selling directly to SEALs. Ernie charged about 400 bucks for that CQC7, and I bought one of them--sold it to Doc later.

However, that folder was not offered as a switchblade, but it was the toughest knife of its era.

Fast forward, we enter the period of "collaboration." You can now get an Emerson collaborative with a coil drive. I have a similar model marketed by Protech with an Emerson blade.

The knife below is an automatic Emerson.

https://www.nicnac.net/contents/en-us/p4306.html
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