A prototype is a preliminary model of something. Projects that offer physical products need to show backers documentation of a working prototype. This gallery features photos, videos, and other visual documentation that will give backers a sense of what’s been accomplished so far and what’s left to do. Though the development process can vary for each project, these are the stages we typically see:
Proof of Concept
Explorations that test ideas and functionality.
Demonstrates the functionality of the final product, but looks different.
Looks like the final product, but is not functional.
Appearance and function match the final product, but is made with different manufacturing methods.
Appearance, function, and manufacturing methods match the final product.
Ordering after Campaign Closes
After I have completed mailing out backer's orders
I own a number of damascus bladed knives both fixed and folders that have been collected over the years. Not just pretty but carried and used outdoors and needed minimal care to keep rust free and sharp.
I ran a campaign last year, backnife, focused on a ceramic utility blade and this is kind of an upscale small knife to be held and used in a pinch grip for small tasks.
With even small Damascus Knives priced at $100 USD each I became interested developing a process to bring costs down to make a small utility knife that could be used with the Backnife holder and affordable to a larger community.
All forged damascus knives have to start with many layers of carbon steel that are welded together by hammering when hot from the forge.
My approach is to use billets of forged and twisted damascus steel that are produced having a minimum of 120 layers of carbon steel. These billets are available from a number of custom suppliers which can then be hammered down into the desired thickness.
The blade will then be cut to shape with CNC / EDM machining. Finish hand grinding and polishing will complete the knife.
Of course the blades still need to have sharpening and finish polishing done by hand but this approach does save on some machining time.
Every piece of twisted and forged damascus will have it's own slightly different pattern and therefore every blade is unique. The arrow shown here is a lazer marking to identify this as my own forging.
I had to have a custom leather sheath produced as it was just not possible to reuse the plastic holder that I designed for the Backnife project.
Optional Blade Shape
I will be sending a survey at end of this campaign so backers can choose either straight or curved blades. Or combination of styles.
AH HA - Thanks to Wazoo for comment on pinch grip, in order to give a firmer grip on the knife I have ordered, from England, small rubber plugs that will fit into the larger hole used for a pinch grip. Improved handling with this minor addition AND can be used for Right or Left Handed users.
AND another way to customise your damscus knife for increased grip would be to use small diameter para cord or even a rounded shoelace.
Interesting that the blade cutting surface on this very small fixed blade knife is the same size as on a successful recent Kickstarter folding knife.
I did not submit this knife to reviewers before launching Kickstarter BUT looks like a couple of bloggers / websites are paying attention.
Damascus Utility Knife is featured in this week's Prowling Dog blog:
I have already contracted for enough billets of damascus forged in the thickness needed to produce approximately 90 blades and programming for CNC cutting has been completed. I should be able to complete machining, and hand sharpening and polishing in time to ship at least these knives before Christmas. Additional product runs will, of course take at least an additional month.
Having completed a kickstarter campaign where I shipped out over 800 pledges earlier than promised I am well aware of time constraints.
I have, in the past completed a variety of production runs of ceramic blades and tools within projected timelines and even a number of custom small folding pocket knives with Japanese damascus blades.