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Wayne Goddard's $50 Knife Shop, Revised Paperback – April 7, 2006

4.5 out of 5 stars 92 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Gun Digest Books; Revised edition (April 7, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0896892956
  • ISBN-13: 978-0896892958
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 0.4 x 10.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (92 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #37,610 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I bought this book to give me some guidance on making my first knife. I think that I am the intended audience for this book which stresses starting out and the $50 investement that making a knife can take. However, Wanye is too distracted by his 40+ years of knife making to be able to break down knife making for a newbie. He wants to tell you all sorts of little details that will not help you make your first knife. Like he gives you a history of what quench solutions he has used without telling you the proportions of the different ingredents in his current perfected mixture. So even if you wanted to duplicate his solution you couldn't. Also Wayne likes to scrounge yard sales and create grinders from old washing machines. So he spends a huge amount of time talking about all the gismos he has made and special jigs. Unfortunately he wants you to create all the stuff he has made over 40 years without any sort of details or dimensions. He just shows pictures and gives a few general comments about having found the parts at various yard sales and salvage yards.

He makes assumptions that you know things. Like he glossed over pinning a handle onto a knife by just saying to "pin it". I was left wondering, what is the pin for, what is it made of, how do you do it, ...

What I was really hoping for was a set of clear instructions to make "this" sample knife do 1, 2, 3, 4, ... but he does not give you that. I have been more helped by doing a google search and finding a few web sites that in just several pages tell you what to do step by step with enough detail that you can follow it.

I do not recommend this as your first book on knife making.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I just struggled through this book, and it's total lack of organization is maddening. The author jumps off on a thousand tangents, but can never finish a thought. He starts on one idea then moves on to another - he talks about how wheels on sanding machines can be made from scrap wheels, and mentions that he was recently at Pearl Harbor, and they had lots of carts there, so obviously there is a scrap yard somewhere where old wheels can be purchased.

WHAT ?!?!?

Due to the horrible editting the text often contradicts itself - to reference just the bit about grinders again, he talks about how scrap wheels are good, especially for hollow grinding ... but you need more precision if you're going to do certain things ... like hollow grinding.

I wanted to like this book, because the author is so clearly a friendly interesting guy...but the bottom line is this:

Pretty much every other book I've read on knifemaking is better than this one.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is an interesting book that takes a bit of a different tact when it comes to blacksmithing blades and knives. The title says it all. This is the fifty dollar knife shop. So, a whole lot of the material covered in this book is about simple forges, simple tools, and putting together a shop for knife making. So predominantly this is about the tools of blacksmithing. And about 20% of the book is about the actual process of making knives. You get two methods including the forging method and the stock removal method that doesn't require a forge. This 20% is very informative though -lots of pictures, diagrams and explanations of blades, blade shapes blades in the process of being forged and how to do it. If you want to make knives on a tight budget this is a great resource. - well, even if your budget is bigger you should still get this book. It's a great resource.
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Format: Paperback
I brought this book a few years ago and it's basically a overview of knifemaking. If you are looking for a book that offers step by step on how to go about making a knife..this isn't the one.After my knowledge of knifemaking has increased, I went back over this book and downgraded it to 2 stars

What it does offer is the differences between forging and stock removal, the materials needed for each, some information regarding damascus and Kriss blades, finishing techniques, a section on building homemade grinders, heat treating information, how to build a one brick forge (doesn't work that well but does work for small blades), some tips on grinding the bevels, etc.

My complaints about this book is that Wayne presents some false information. He suggests that narrow tangs are stronger then full tangs. This is simply false as a full tang blade is supported by a full width of steel going all the way across the handle and when properly constructed..the actual handle isn't weak either as it should be held on with mechanical AND chemical methods. Hammering knives through a 2x4 is a inaccurate test as well and he specifically said he would never do that to a full tang knife. Well that means he's never actually compared the two on that test then. He also suggests that hand-rubbed finishes are highly quality then mirror finish, which just makes no logical sense as a mirror finish requires *far* more effort. Even I can do a decent hand rubbed finish on my blades.

EDIT: My review has been revised and I reduced this book down in rating due to the inaccuracies mentioned above in addition to the grinding section being focused on belt sanders despite it being targeted to those on a limited budget.
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