View Full Version : Vintage Sab Parers ...re-imagined (sort of)

12-17-2013, 08:16 PM
Picked up a couple raw, 4" NOS Sabatier nogent paring blanks a while back. Similar to a few other threads posted around the forum, these were drop forged but never finished blanks. There are a bunch of legends on the origin of these kinds of blanks.... most center around them being found in a warehouse that was bought out in the 80s and date the blanks to pre 1950...likely lost during the many consolidation that happened with the various makers in the area. The true story....who knows for sure.

I'm not a knife maker, but always love the nogent parers and thought it would be a fun, inexpensive little project to play with. (If I don't count handle changes or sharpening/clean-up projects, these are the first knives I've made)

I picked up three parers and a few other larger blanks I'm still working on (Seller was very easy to deal with)... ground, profiled, shipped off for pro-heat treatment...and then handled up..and sharpened.

Handles are a custom shape I designed...has a throwback at the bolster to the original nogent collars, bit of a coke bottle curve...and a few twists. They're balanced at the bolster and have some inlays too. With the square end handle, they also stand up vertically...though that's just a random happy accident of the design. The goal was to make something really comfortable and balanced that blended old and modern in its shape.

Little mustard patina started on the blades. (and a little patina from use building up too)

Steel is guessed to be 1080, or 1080-like according to others. It came out at HRC 59...and sharpened up pretty easily.

I made leather lined presentation boxes for two to give away as gifts. One, a drawer-type box with accessory slot is walnut and birdseye maple. The other with a hinged lid and a magnetic catch (not fully closed in the picture) is all cherry (mix of rare curly light sapwood and regular old cherry) with small ebony inset in center.

The pictures aren't great .....but fun project worth sharing. These blanks come up for sale from time to time. Wasn't sure what I'd get ...but was pleased with the results.

1 before picture of rough blank...few afters.





12-17-2013, 09:14 PM
Beautiful work, thanks for sharing.

HHH Knives
12-17-2013, 09:41 PM

12-18-2013, 01:34 AM
Very unique and very cool. Thanks for sharing with us.

12-18-2013, 10:06 AM
This is gorgeous - great job!

12-18-2013, 04:56 PM
Those are awesome. Love the extra handle length

12-18-2013, 05:04 PM
Thanks all! This was a fun project...and a bit of a gamble. Whole way through I didn't know if the old blanks were going to be decent cutters or end up as letter openers. It was touch and go at points.
... turns out, though, the old blanks cut well.

G-Rat - wasn't sure if many would notice that. Made 'em a bit long so they'd be really comfortable in the hand. Also helped me get the balance right at the ferrule. The old rat tail tang was kind of tricky to work with when it came to coming up with how to mount it and keep the weight balance where I wanted.

Gotta say, making these gave me a real sense and added appreciation of the work the pros do - time and skill.
Case in point -- HHH, your damascus is amazing. I love the Nakiri you have pics of on your website!

Dave Martell
12-18-2013, 05:22 PM
Cool - nice work!

12-18-2013, 08:09 PM
very very nice done, really like the finish on handles and blades
supernice woodwork also!

12-26-2013, 10:14 PM

very very nice done, really like the finish on handles and blades
supernice woodwork also!

Cool - nice work!