Blade Show West Set To Take Over Salt Lake City

Makers And Knife Aficionados From Around The Globe Are Set To Descend On Salt Lake City For Blade Show West In October. 

Premier custom and factory knifemakers, a seminar on a new canister pattern technique that could revolutionize the knife industry and the 3rd Annual West Coast Flipping Championships will be but a few of the highlights of BLADE Show West Oct. 7-8 at the Salt Palace Convention Center in Salt Lake City.

It will be the first-ever BLADE Show West in the great state of Utah. The show was held at the Long Beach Convention Center in Long Beach, California, last year.

The doors will open to the public each day at 10 a.m. and close at 6 p.m. Leading custom and factory makers, knife accessory companies, suppliers of various materials, equipment, and tools to make knives and more will exhibit their latest wares for your perusal throughout the weekend.

The Stars Of Blade Show West

As with all BLADE Show events, BLADE Show West will have a state-of-the-art seminar schedule. The schedule kicks off Friday at 1 p.m. with one on how to bring your blade back from the edge of dull by Clay Allison of Wicked Edge Precision Sharpeners.

At 2:30 p.m. ABS master smith Steve Schwarzer and Ron Hardman will present 3D Printing for Canister Patterns. In this exclusive seminar for BLADE Show West, Steve and Ron will outline how 3D printing plays a role in bladesmithing and how it may affect the future of the craft in general.

It was just this past February that Steve, Ron, Ben Bannister, and Kyrie Schroetin posted test results where 3D printed designs were combined with powdered steels to lay out complex canister patterns—all in record time. 

With relatively inexpensive printers, free design software, and easily sourced printing materials, 3D printing is more accessible to the general public than ever, and it’s something most anyone can do in a shop setting. Join Steve & Co. as they demonstrate how to do it, compare and contrast different methods of developing patterns, the types of metals that can be used, how to set up your own 3D print lab, and more.

ABS master smith Neels Van Den Berg of South Africa was the star of the annual meeting of the ABS at BLADE Show ’22  in Atlanta, not only earning his ABS master smith stamp but capturing the coveted B. R. Hughes Award for the best knife by a master smith applicant. Join him as he shows you how he makes knives in the design of his award winner in Symmetrical Quillon Dagger.

The gang was all there for last year’s 2nd Annual West Coast Flipping Championships and a large number are expected to compete this year in the 3rd annual rendition sponsored by Squid Industries. (group shot courtesy of Squid Industries)

Saturday’s seminars kick off with Let The Pros Critique Your Knife, the latest in the BLADE Show’s series of discussions in which some of today’s leading makers examine one knife of one or more show attendees. This time the panel consists of BLADE Magazine Cutlery Hall-Of-Fame® member Bill Ruple, slip-joint maker Enrique Pena, ABS master smith/past Forged in Fire judge Jason Knight, and bladesmith Will Stelter. Shane Magnussen will follow that up with a reboot of his popular seminar, How To Texture Titanium Knife Handles.

The seminar schedule closes with a bang on show Saturday with the 3rd Annual West Coast Flipping Championships sponsored by Squid Industries. Contestants ranging in age from teenagers to 30 will show their stuff in a series of timed balisong-flipping competitions. Attendance is free to all show ticket holders.

Award Categories And Rules

At a time to be determined on show Friday, the custom knife and factory knife judging competitions will be held. 

Categories in the custom knife category are: Best Slip Joint, Best Locking Folder, Best Damascus, Best Kitchen Knife, Best Bowie, Best Hunting Knife, Best Tactical Knife, Best Chopper, and Best In Show. Categories in the factory knife category are Best Folder, Best EDC, Best Hunting Knife, Best Tactical Knife, Best of the Rest, Best Non-Knife Tool, and Best In Show.

Special rules for the factory judging include:

•Best EDC is open to both folders and fixed blades.

•Best of the Rest is for any knife not covered by the other categories.

•Best Non-Knife Tool, as its name suggests, must be for any non-knife tool.

Special rules for the custom judging include:

•Best Locking Folder is for any folder that locks, including linerlocks, lockbacks, etc.

•Best Chopper includes any edged tool that excels at chopping, including but not limited to competition cutters, kukris, cleavers, hatchets, tomahawks, axes, etc.

Special rules for both custom and factory include:

•Best Hunting Knife and Best Tactical Knife are open to both folders and fixed blades.

All award winners will receive trophies and coverage in the BLADE Show West recap edition of BLADE®. The winners will be announced at 8 p.m. on show Friday at the BLADE Show Awards After Party presented by Black Rifle Coffee. (See the show program and/or the show staff at the show for the party’s location.)

New Venue For Blade Show West 

Tobin Hill will be among a strong contingent of exhibiting slip-joint makers. His folding-guard hunter features CPM 154 stainless blade steel in a hollow grind and an amber stag handle. His price for a similar knife: $2,500. (SharpByCoop image)

Many outstanding restaurants and watering holes are within easy walking distance of the Salt Palace Convention Center, a venue that is cutting edge in terms of exhibitor space and other amenities. The area is also home to an energetic nightlife scene, national parks, museums, and other attractions.

Meanwhile, there will be raffles and giveaways, vintage custom and factory knives on display, knife swapping galore, old friends renewing acquaintances, and new friends making new ones—all at BLADE Show West 2022.

. . .

BLADE Show West Seminar Schedule

Friday, October 7
1-to-2 p.m. BACK FROM THE EDGE OF DULL—Meeting Room 150: Maintaining a keen edge on your knife requires sharpening on a regular basis. However, that isn’t always done and the edge may go almost completely dull as a result. According to Clay Allison of Wicked Edge Precision Sharpeners, his company has the tools to bring your blade back from the edge of dull. Let him show you how.
2:30-to-4 p.m. 3D PRINTING FOR CANISTER PATTERNS—Meeting Room 150: Learn how to leverage 3D Printer Technology to make canister damascus patterns. ABS master smith Steve Schwarzer and Ron Hardman show you how to use this game-changing advancement to forge patterns that were previously unthinkable—and all on a budget, too.
4:30-to-5:30 p.m. SYMMETRICAL QUILLON DAGGER 101—Meeting Room 150: ABS Master Smith Neels Van Den Berg takes you through the making of a Symmetrical Quillon Dagger, including design, proportions, aesthetics, materials, fluting and finally the entire production process, sharing useful tips and tricks to save you time, money and frustration.

Saturday, October 8
1-to-2 p.m. LET THE PROS CRITIQUE YOUR KNIFE—Meeting Room 150: Award-winning knifemakers share their decades of knowledge and experience in critiquing your custom knife. Jason Knight, Enrique Pena, Bill Ruple, and Will Stelter go over your knife and tell you what is good about it, what is not and how you can make it better. This will be a limited-seating event. Bring one knife only. Questions from attendees will be entertained throughout.
3-to-4 p.m. HOW TO TEXTURE TITANIUM KNIFE HANDLES—Meeting Room 150: Shane Magnussen of Scorpion 6 Knives covers the use of a 2×72 grinder to sculpt various patterns and textures on materials such as titanium, steel, and other alloys. He will cover the setup and techniques of sculpting freehand or by using a fixture, provide the information needed to safely use and select a grinder for sculpting, and outline the mechanics of varying angles, wheel size and abrasive belt options, and how they influence the finished look of the materials.
4-to-6 p.m. 3rd ANNUAL West Coast Flipping Championships—Meeting Room 150: Hosted by Squid Industries, the championships will feature head-to-head live blade flipping in an elimination bracket-style competition.

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