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RiffRaff
03-12-2013, 10:20 PM
Of all the beautiful handles I've used (Phil Wilson's stag, Bill Burke's musk ox, Michael Rader's koa/mammoth, Stephan's koa/blonde horn and his blue bakelite), and much as I hate to admit it. . .

13933

I still like my Fribrox. Sure grip, feels great, no matter how wet or how greasy. Fits snug in the hand, surprisingly ergonomic, semi-bird's beak and ugly as a dead pigeon.

Can someone please tell me why no one else, not even the hallowed craftsmen on this site, puts a handle like this on some great, heat-treated steel (and I'm not counting Butch's rainbow micarta)? I'm talkin' 'bout stuff that's softer and gripp-ier than G-10 or linen micarta combined.

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Marko Tsourkan
03-12-2013, 10:28 PM
It'd be too easy, though you liking it so much, got me interested to take a look at it.

Salty dog
03-12-2013, 10:31 PM
It limits your grips. I've had knives with similar handles but they tend to be best for hardcore work.

apicius9
03-12-2013, 10:35 PM
It'd be too easy, though you liking it so much, got me interested to take a look at it.

I was just googling for fibrox material myself ;) After having to recover a moment from falling behind the ugly 'dead pigeon' in J.'s ranking ;)

Stefan

knyfeknerd
03-12-2013, 10:36 PM
I hate that stuff. Natural-ish materials are my favorite.
If it's plastic or anything even resembling plastic/resin/rubbery-stuff, I'm takin' it off.

Don Nguyen
03-12-2013, 10:39 PM
Is it mostly the grippiness that you like so much?

I just hate looking at it... :(

(First thought when I read the title was Rader)

RiffRaff
03-12-2013, 10:40 PM
No offense intended, Stefan.

apicius9
03-12-2013, 10:55 PM
No offense intended, Stefan.

Just kidding. I don't have much experience with finishing micarta, but with the few pieces I worked with from Butch I thought if they are not sanded too high and don't get any glue or other finish applied to them, they should be quite grippy, probably more that Fibrox. But the shape of the Victorinox handles clearly doesn't do it for me (although, admittedly, it may be 20 years ago that I last use done).

Stefan

Jmadams13
03-12-2013, 11:06 PM
I kinda agree with the OP. it feels good, and its stays secure when things get wet, but it does limit your grip options. If someone did a D or octagon I'd try it. I love mine for fish when things have to get wet, but wish I had more grip options then pinch. Anyone know what plastic they use?

panda
03-12-2013, 11:19 PM
Mac pro handle, best western style ever.

labor of love
03-12-2013, 11:41 PM
Mac pro handle, best western style ever.

yeah, its crazy but i might have to agree. only among factory knives ofcourse.

NO ChoP!
03-12-2013, 11:46 PM
Burnt chestnut is a great wa alternative for good grip....

Customfan
03-12-2013, 11:53 PM
Sure I like the grip of My Victorinox and Forschener but I prefer natural materials..

It would be interesting too see this shape in other materials and maybe even modified (i would make it thinner among others).

It also limits my pinch, obstructs my middle finger to the side a bit and it obstructs sharping. :nono:

besides its ******-ugly!

franzb69
03-12-2013, 11:53 PM
i've read rave reviews of the handle on hattori FH. most comfortable western handle they ever had on a knife they said.


Burnt chestnut is a great wa alternative for good grip....

i read that as well

GlassEye
03-13-2013, 12:47 AM
Octagonal ho-wood.

chinacats
03-13-2013, 12:58 AM
Nogent ebony block...somewhere in-between a western and a wa handle. Feels perfect. I like fibrox handles too, they really are ugly though.

Don Nguyen
03-13-2013, 01:03 AM
What's the stuff Salty was using on his handles? I remember seeing a bunch of his knives were coated black with something, or something like that.

Looked pretty simple and cool, actually.

El Pescador
03-13-2013, 01:30 AM
You're missing the Devin Thomas brushed Wenge. Great looking and textured.

Justin0505
03-13-2013, 04:27 AM
Is it mostly the grippiness that you like so much?

I just hate looking at it... :(

(First thought when I read the title was Rader)

Ha! I thought the exact same thing. Seriously though, someday people are going to read that and think "Nguyen" - yours is one of the only "radical" looking designs that actually "works".

I never liked the fibrox handles much. Too overly "ergo" and limited in grip options as Salty pointed out. Plus, that material just always feels dirty to me: like I'm holding someone's old croc sandal (or a dead pigeon).

I remember an old video Salty did on his "murdered out" black handle finish, but I think it was one of the casualties of the great deleting of '09 (or whenever it was that he nuked his uploads).

wenus2
03-13-2013, 04:39 AM
(First thought when I read the title was Rader)

Same here, and oddly enough... The exact same one pictured. I didn't even realize the OP owned it.

RiffRaff
03-13-2013, 08:32 AM
Yeah, it's the grippiness and the comfort over the long haul, as Salty pointed out. Could't pull the thing out of your hand with a tractor. Way better than ho-wood.

But in agreement with everyone else, Man Does Not Live By Grip Alone, and sure, I also love handles that are beautiful to look at, on the counter or on a magnetic rack, as long as they're servicable.

Yet. . . for the fraction of pennies it must cost them to make Fibrox, well, Marko, maybe you *should* offer it as an option!

Dave Martell
03-13-2013, 10:38 AM
http://mksknife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/bicycle-handle1.jpg

Marko Tsourkan
03-13-2013, 10:47 AM
http://mksknife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/bicycle-handle1.jpg

I'd buy, ditch the knives and put the handles on my bicycle. :D

Cutting Edge Handles.

ajhuff
03-13-2013, 11:21 AM
Sabatier Nogent has the best handle. You have to use one to believe it.

-AJ

Don Nguyen
03-13-2013, 12:41 PM
Like this one?

http://www.cookfoodgood.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/nogent_6in_slicer.jpg

What makes it work so well?



EDIT: While searching for that I found this:

http://bernalcutlery.com/shop/images/4412/35cmssrose8.jpg

wenus2
03-13-2013, 12:42 PM
I'd buy, ditch the knives and put the handles on my bicycle. :D

Cutting Edge Handles.

You could always just replace your handle bars with sayas...

Keep it gangsta!

ajhuff
03-13-2013, 12:56 PM
Like this one?

http://www.cookfoodgood.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/nogent_6in_slicer.jpg

What makes it work so well?



Yup. Can't really explain it, it just does.

-AJ

JohnnyChance
03-13-2013, 01:14 PM
D: Marko. Octagonal: Marko and Devin. Western: Bill Burke and Twistington rehandled Yosihide.

Reede
03-13-2013, 01:51 PM
http://i1144.photobucket.com/albums/o496/ReedEdwards/DSC01718.jpg

RiffRaff
03-13-2013, 07:41 PM
13944

I hadn't anticipated a beauty contest since my original post was about a favorite ugly duckling. But I couldn't resist showing a few more of the beauts my lowly Forschner Fibrox has to compete with including (left to right)

Daniel O'Malley's quilted redwood on a Hattori KD 150 petty, O'Malley's snakewood/synthetic on Carter nakiri, O'Malley spalted maple/black horn on a Shig santoku, "Heavin Forge" warthog tusk/ebony on a 210 German-style damscus chef, O'Malley afzalia burl on a 240 Hattori KD, and an Isaiah Schroeder zebrawood (very good grip, not too polished) on a Heiji stainless 240

Johnny.B.Good
03-13-2013, 10:27 PM
Quite a collection, RiffRaff!

Burl Source
03-13-2013, 10:45 PM
A guy I know who does a lot of trail blazing has knives with good looking handles wraps them with tennis racket tape when using them in the forest.
Then when he gets home he removes the tape so the knives don't look so dang ugly.
With the hunting knife crowd there was a flurry of knives being made using horse stall rubber mats.
Supposedly they were grippy and performed well, but once again ugly and never caught on.

bikehunter
03-13-2013, 10:55 PM
Burnt chestnut is a great wa alternative for good grip....

Owned a Victorinox Fibrox handled 10" Chef for years and it's hard to beat for a good grip (and yes...ugly as sin). I must agree with NO ChoP as well. I have a 240 gyuto by Yoshikane and that Burnt Chestnut is as grippy as any wood wa handle I've ever used.

olpappy
03-14-2013, 02:02 AM
Fibrox gets a huge thumbs up from me, even with all the fancy custom knives I have not thrown out the Forschners precisely because the Fibrox is so comfortable. The shape of the handles isn't great but the material seems almost indestructible and the perfect degree of grippiness not too much nor too little, cleans up easily after sitting in disgusting filth, everything you could want in a handle material. Victorinox/Forschner is sitting on a gold mine IMHO, this material should be used in all shapes and sizes of handles. I think the ideal handle would be a big fat Sabatier handle made of Fibrox!

boomchakabowwow
03-14-2013, 02:27 AM
on a butcher/hunting knife, it is tough to beat fibrox. my buddy takes apart animals with one. kinda nice how easy it is to get clean streamside with camp soap. my handles seem to hang onto the grease longer..
when i worked in the family restaurant, i could mow thru onions with a victorinox. it was the only knife my stepdad let me abuse. i used to hammer open big soup cans with the heel. not smart at all. but my stepdad bought alot of those beaters.

keithsaltydog
03-14-2013, 02:42 AM
I think the Fibrox handles look ugly but work well,they are cheaper than the Rosewood Forschners,for knives that are not taken care of they are more sanitary.The bolsterless Rosewood wt. crappy knife care,develope separation fr. the tang & can get pretty funky.

A forum member turned me on to the Kanetsugu Pro-M.I like the handle on this Gyuto,very comfortable.Lite,thin profile,sharpens up easy & even comes wt. a Saya.A couple of my culinary student's have ordered them.

RiffRaff
03-14-2013, 08:17 AM
Fibrox gets a huge thumbs up from me, even with all the fancy custom knives I have not thrown out the Forschners precisely because the Fibrox is so comfortable. The shape of the handles isn't great but the material seems almost indestructible and the perfect degree of grippiness not too much nor too little, cleans up easily after sitting in disgusting filth, everything you could want in a handle material. Victorinox/Forschner is sitting on a gold mine IMHO, this material should be used in all shapes and sizes of handles. I think the ideal handle would be a big fat Sabatier handle made of Fibrox!

+1 I've come to prefer the thinner profile Sabs, and a Sab Nogent with Fibrox-like handle and properly heat-treated stainless at 60+ HRC, well, there's your gold mine for all.

Matus
03-14-2013, 11:19 AM
The best handle I have used is a birch bark one on my Finish Iisaki Aito knife. It never gets slippery and feels great in hand. Never seen one on a kitchen knife though.

RiffRaff
03-14-2013, 12:42 PM
The best handle I have used is a birch bark one on my Finish Iisaki Aito knife. It never gets slippery and feels great in hand. Never seen one on a kitchen knife though.

Photos please. . . .

Matus
03-14-2013, 02:28 PM
Photos please. . . .
here (http://m.flickr.com/#/photos/31007239@N06/4901140567/in/set-72157624621104985/)

http://farm5.staticflickr.com/4095/4901140567_785857bb22.jpg

I have bought in the past (as a present for a friend) a knife from Jukka Hankala - Ikari, which also has a birch bark handle which is absolutely sublime (Ikari is also much more expensive than Aito):

here (http://m.flickr.com/#/photos/31007239@N06/4901012647/in/set-72157624621104985/)
http://farm5.staticflickr.com/4094/4901012647_efc5fac102.jpg

Matus
03-14-2013, 02:31 PM
The above post took me more than 30 minutes to write from my phone - I guess I need a ew one :-)

RiffRaff
03-14-2013, 02:48 PM
The above post took me more than 30 minutes to write from my phone - I guess I need a ew one :-)

Very beautiful and a reminder of what natural materials can be at their best

Marko Tsourkan
03-14-2013, 07:07 PM
here (http://m.flickr.com/#/photos/31007239@N06/4901140567/in/set-72157624621104985/)

http://farm5.staticflickr.com/4095/4901140567_785857bb22.jpg

I have bought in the past (as a present for a friend) a knife from Jukka Hankala - Ikari, which also has a birch bark handle which is absolutely sublime (Ikari is also much more expensive than Aito):

here (http://m.flickr.com/#/photos/31007239@N06/4901012647/in/set-72157624621104985/)
http://farm5.staticflickr.com/4094/4901012647_efc5fac102.jpg

I have been thinking about birch bark handles for a while, but I am not sure it would be hygienic enough for the kitchen. Bark is porous. I do like the look though.

M

Andrew H
03-14-2013, 07:23 PM
13944

I hadn't anticipated a beauty contest since my original post was about a favorite ugly duckling. But I couldn't resist showing a few more of the beauts my lowly Forschner Fibrox has to compete with including (left to right)

Daniel O'Malley's quilted redwood on a Hattori KD 150 petty, O'Malley's snakewood/synthetic on Carter nakiri, O'Malley spalted maple/black horn on a Shig santoku, "Heavin Forge" warthog tusk/ebony on a 210 German-style damscus chef, O'Malley afzalia burl on a 240 Hattori KD, and an Isaiah Schroeder zebrawood (very good grip, not too polished) on a Heiji stainless 240

The handle on that KD 150 is tiny. Does it feel good in the hand?

Matus
03-14-2013, 07:25 PM
Concerning the hygiene and birch bark - I would say if one is capable to keep carbon knives in the kitchen in a good shape, than it should be no problem. I have already considered to try to make such a handle, but it is not easy to get a good quality birch bark around here. In fact I would love to have such a handle on some of my kitchen knives (and the Mora 2000 which could really use a better handle)

Marko Tsourkan
03-14-2013, 07:59 PM
Concerning the hygiene and birch bark - I would say if one is capable to keep carbon knives in the kitchen in a good shape, than it should be no problem. I have already considered to try to make such a handle, but it is not easy to get a good quality birch bark around here. In fact I would love to have such a handle on some of my kitchen knives (and the Mora 2000 which could really use a better handle)

I have a source for quality bark. It goes for about $10/SF

RiffRaff
03-14-2013, 10:01 PM
The handle on that KD 150 is tiny. Does it feel good in the hand?

As you can probably guess, it doesn't fill the palm of your hand as a full-size handle would. It stays in the fingers when using it for slicing, and it's damn good for a pinch group where your fourth and fifth finger (only) wrap around the handle. Sounds more complicated than it is. Daniel O'Malley also did me the favor of rounding the spine, so it's especially comfortable.

franzb69
03-15-2013, 01:13 AM
I have been thinking about birch bark handles for a while, but I am not sure it would be hygienic enough for the kitchen. Bark is porous. I do like the look though.

i'm just talking out of my butt, but maybe stabilizing it would help? =D

Marko Tsourkan
03-15-2013, 01:44 AM
i'm just talking out of my butt, but maybe stabilizing it would help? =D

I am not sure it is possible or if it is worth the effort. Bark is between 1/8 and 1/16 thick. If I make one, it will be natural and would require a periodic application of wood conditioner

franzb69
03-15-2013, 01:58 AM
ohhh okay. would look cool though.