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Grant Hawk: Idaho City's blade master

Grant Hawk: Idaho City's blade master

by Brian Holmes

Bio | Email | Follow: @KTVB

KTVB.COM

Posted on May 24, 2012 at 8:33 AM

Updated Thursday, May 24 at 9:05 AM

IDAHO CITY -- Just off Centreville road in a non-descript trailer park, knife-maker Grant Hawk’s brown barn stands out just a little bit from its surroundings.

 “Well we're not a complete secret,” Hawk admits.
 
You see, Hawk is rather famous for converting the barn – which used to house logging trucks -into a cutting edge business.
 
That’s where Grant, and his son Gavin, make knives, and these aren't your basic blades.
 
 The reason?
 
Both Hawks spend much of their time masterminding and building unique and intricate ways to slip the steel of a knife blade from its handle or sheath.
 
Because of their unique goals in knife making, the Hawks call themselves “mechanism guys," because there is no official trade name for a knife maker of that particular style.
 
At 71 years-old, Grant Hawk has only been making knives for about 12 years, but has had a lifetime of preparation for the job.
 
Hawk designed and sold camp trailers in California in the 70s, and then came the gas shortage which brought him to Idaho City in 1976. He was searching for gold.
 
“I spent my whole life making almost everything I needed out of anything I could find,” Hawk explains.
 
However, in early 90s, the price of precious metals dropped so dramatically that Hawk felt he needed another way to make a living. So with no formal education, he began using materials like titanium, polyurethane, and Damascus steel to piece together his first unique knives.
 
He also recruited his son, Gavin, to help.
 
Fast-forward a few years, and now many famous blade-making businesses have come together to support and purchase the Hawk’s designs. Companies like Columbia River Knife and Tool, Kershaw, and Cabella's all carry cutlery designed by the Hawks.
 
So if you're looking to get your hands on some hand-made, Idaho hardware, just head down Centreville Road.
 
“If they make it to Idaho city they can track us down,” Grant Hawk says with a smile.

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