One to Watch: Ferrum Forge Gent
Tony Sculimbrene 09.25.17
Its hard to capture exactly what it is that Elliot Williamson at Ferrum Forge does in a single article. His early knives looked like scaled beasts from the cover of a nerdy 1980s Dragonlance novel. His more recent stuff is about as subdued and minimalist as it gets, so it’s quite an understatement to say that his look has changed.
But appearance is not all that has evolved. When Ferrum Forge started, one of my friends ordered a custom knife from Elliot and it was truly custom–every feature and design flourish was for that knife and that knife only. Even the steel, SM100, was unusual and exotic. Ferrum Forge at the time seemed to be one of the most unusual “blank check” makers around–the more insane and the more exotic, the better. But as his style shifted, so too did his production methods. He collaborated with other makers (Michael Gavic of Gavko Knives, among others), and then began producing batches of blades. That led to runs of midtechs, all of which hit a nice price point of between $400 and $500. These were expensive but very nice knives. And now with the Ferrum Forge Gent, Elliot has shifted yet again.
The Gent is an exclusive collaboration between Ferrum Forge, WE Knives, and Massdrop. It is, in many ways, the most distilled, most remarkable knife that Elliot (and now his brother Chris) has released. It is an exceptionally clean knife and one that seems ideally suited to everyday carry. The Gent runs a very accessible $79.95 on the drop. It is scheduled to be released in 2018, so, as with all things Massdrop, be patient. The blade is a very friendly 3 inches and the knife weighs a pleasant 2.4 ounces. The knife’s steel is the always-good S35VN. The handle is made of titanium with a letterboxed G10 scale. The blade deploys via a flipper and rides on caged bearings. It has a polished deep-carry pocket clip. Finally, the knife has a true finger choil.
In short, this is a bullet list of features that should excite any knife knut. In many ways, this is where the market should be going as this is a knife that looks great on paper in terms of carry and utility. A true choil on a flipper is such a rarity, and choils make all of the difference in the world when it comes to actual cutting. This might be one of the most exciting releases of the year, and that is a bold statement given how good 2017 has been.
Going from lizard-skin flippers to this, the most Scandanavian-looking knife to come out of their shop, the Ferrum Forge Gent should be an instabuy for anyone who likes and carries knives. This is a great example of leveraging enthusiast insights to make a great knife–WE providing top shelf production, Elliot and Chris providing great design, and Massdrop moving everything out to paying customers. The Gent looks damn near irresistable, but act fast. The drop closes soon.