The world’s top knives were recognized during the BLADE Show & Living Ready Expo (www.bladeshow.com) May 31-June 2 at the Cobb Galleria Centre in Atlanta.
The leading factory knives were honored with the BLADE Magazine 2013 Knife-Of-The-Year® Awards, while the world’s pre-eminent custom knives were named in the show’s custom knife judging competition.
All entrants in the Knife-Of-The-Year and custom knife judging competitions were rated on a number of factors, including utility, design, creativity, materials, aesthetics, feel and other traits.
Announced Saturday night at the BLADE Magazine Awards Banquet in the Cobb Galleria, honors in 13 different Knife-Of-The-Year categories included 10 knives and one knife accessory. Two awards also went to individuals for special achievement in the knife industry. The categories and winners:
•Overall Knife Of The Year®: Zero Tolerance 0454;
•American-Made Knife Of The Year®: Hogue Elishewitz EX-04;
•Imported Knife Of The Year®: Fox Knives Modras;
•Most Innovative American Design: Microtech D.O.C. Kill Switch;
•Most Innovative Imported Design: CRKT Ken Onion Swindle;
•Best Buy Of The Year: CRKT Endorser;
•Kitchen Knife Of The Year®: Ken Onion Chef Works;
•Investor/Collector Knife Of The Year®: Pro-Tech Newport;
•Knife Collaboration Of The Year®: Microtech Mick Strider;
•Manufacturing Quality Award: Chris Reeve Knives;
•Accessory Of The Year: CRKT Onion Survival Para-saw;
•Industry Achievement Award: American Bladesmith Society (ABS) master smith Joe Keeslar for introducing the ABS and modern bladesmithing to France through annual workshops, as well as teaching bladesmithing in the USA via seminars and his books, for his award-winning knives, and for his leadership via several terms on the ABS Board Of Directors and as chairman of the ABS; and, finally:
•Publisher’s Award: Joyce Laituri, marketing manager of Spyderco, for almost two decades of setting the standard for how to best promote and publicize a knife company’s knives—in this case, those of Spyderco. Her ability to work with the media in terms of providing Spyderco knives, knife imagery, knife information and other materials has been a model for all others in public relations to emulate. No one has done it better.
Announced earlier in the day, the custom knife winners were, by category:
•Best Tactical Folder: Sniper Bladeworks
•Best Fixed Blade: David Lisch;
•Yvon Vachon Best Miniature Award: Yoshio Sakauchi;
•Best Sword: David Mirabile;
•Best Damascus: John White;
•Best Art Knife: Steve Rapp;
•Best Collaboration: Bob Terzuola and Brian Fellhoelter;
•Best New Maker: David Sharp;
•Best Folder: Scott Sawby;
•Best Bowie: John White;
•Best Handle Design: E. Scott McGhee;
•Best Fighter: E. Scott McGhee;
•Best of the Rest: Steve Culver;
•Most Innovative Design: Grant and Gavin Hawk;
•Best Utility Hunter: Alan Hutchinson;
•Hugh Bartrug Best of Show Award: John White.
Also during the banquet, ABS master smith Wayne Goddard became the 50th inductee into the BLADE Magazine Cutlery Hall Of Fame©. Celebrating 50 years of making knives, Goddard parlayed the knowledge he’s gained in his knifemaking business into a second career writing about the process, including almost a quarter century as a columnist (Question & Answer, The $50 Knife Shop, Steels and more) for BLADE Magazine and as an author of several knife books, including The Wonder of Knifemaking.