The Blade Show

The BLADE Show:

So today I went down to the BLADE Show, the annual exposition of Blade magazine. It was all the way down in Atlanta, but I went anyway because some of my association were getting together to play.

Described as "the world's largest knife show," it had some truly impressive entries from craftsmen and artists as well as industry leaders. I was impressed to see that almost every table was either a major manufacturer or an independent knifemaker of significant skill; there were also some supply dealers. What there wasn't was pawn shops, for the most part, or people peddling trash such as you get at gun shows (one reason that I have not been to a gun show in several years; another reason is that I believe I have a sufficient number and variety of guns for the various tasks that I encounter requiring them).

Of special interest to me were Albion Swords and CAS Hanwei. I met "Tinker Pierce," who has designed their latest range of swords for western martial artists. He provided a couple of test models of his longsword, blunt, which you can see being used above. They performed better than expected! After an hour of vigorous practice, there were no nicks on the blade, and the fittings had not loosened at all.

Albion invited me to handle every one of their main production line swords, and spent quite a while with me talking through the differences in the models. I was highly impressed, especially with the stunning difference in handling qualities between their type XIIa and type XIIIa war swords. These things read like they should be very similar in characteristics, as the stats are similar; both are made of the same monosteels, as well. The main difference is the taper line. Yet the XIIIa is a wholly different creature in the hand.

It was a very good time.

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