Daniel O’Connor Goes With The Flow On His Black Widow

Daniel O’Connor Goes With The Flow On His Black Widow
Daniel O’Connor has made knives off and on for 40 years but is mostly full time now after retiring. Instead of tack welding his damascus he uses a method he calls Nuclayer Fusion, a compound that sticks the pieces of steel together in preparation for forge welding. Two methods are on YouTube. The red fiber liners are a tie in with the red hourglass mark common to the black widow spider. (SharpByCoop knife image)

A sushi knife that developed a taste for Texas brisket.

You might say Daniel O’Connor’s Black Widow leads a double life. It started as a sushi knife but when one of Daniel’s Texas pals said it looked like it would make a great brisket knife, O’Connor went with the flow, telling
his friend, “It’s about whatever you want it to be.”

OConnor Mug

Based on a kiritsuke yanagi-ba sushi knife, Black Widow features a damascus of 150 layers of 1084 carbon and 15N20 nickel-alloy steels. Daniel forged the steels in a square and then forged them flat, perpendicular to the original stack. This resulted in the edges of the layers showing up in more or less straight lines, what Japanese swordsmiths call masame hada.

The accompanying image of the knife’s butt shows how the layers distorted when forged on edge. Daniel indicated he will use the pattern in the future.

Black Widow Specs
Blade length: 12”
Blade grind: A double urashi—double bevel w/a slight hollow on each side
Handle: Bocote burl w/red fiber liners
Bolster: Bog oak
Overall length: 17”
Sheath: Irish yew and bog oak
Maker’s price for a similar knife and sheath: $1,500

Check Out More Cool Custom Knives:


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here