Technical info on our knives
Our knives are made via the stock removal method. We buy our steel from a reputable company in a flat ground condition annealed (unhardened/soft). We buy our material with the certification so we know exactly what the alloy is. We normalize it in our heat Treat furnace to refine the grain a bit. This isn't always necessary but is a good "just in case" measure if there are any tiny impurities left from the smelting process at the foundry.
We are currently making all of our blades from A2 tool steel. We chose A2 as it is the finest grained cast steel available. In fact it is approaching some of the powdered metal super steels for its homogeneous structure. It is tough at a high hardness so no compromise between hardness/toughness! A2 is often favored by survival knife makers for this reason. It has terrific edge holding and is not too difficult to sharpen in the field.
We do plan on making model K1 in AEB-L stainless steel as this knife would make an excellent trout/bird knife if it was available in stainless. This will be sometime in 2020.
Heat treating/cold treating
After normalizing we do machining and rough grinding. Then we heat treat, cryogenic treat in Liquid Nitrogen, and temper two times for a target hardness or 59-61 on the Rockwell "C" scale. This makes for a terrific slicer that can stand up to some rough work also.
Handles and liners
The liner is the thin piece of material between the knife blade and the handle. It is generally a cosmetic piece and adds much to the look of the knife. We use G-10 exclusively for our liners. It is very tough dense material made from fiberglass and epoxy resin. It glues very well and comes in a variety of colors.
Our handles currently are being made from Corian counter top material. We had experimented with some of the acrylic handle material offered by various knife making supply companies and felt this material was on the soft side so we switched to Corian. We feel it is a superior material as it resists scratching far in excess of acrylic knife handle material. We plan on introducing some stabilized (resin impregnated) wood handles in 2020 but for now the Corian handles are what we offer. They are attractive and strong.
We use the Hauser-Interlock™ method of attaching handles to blades. This is done by cutting "windows" in the steel and making interlocking lugs on the handle pieces that allow the handles to fit to each other through the knife blade. This greatly increases the epoxy surface and removes the flat shear plane entirely.
Philosophy of manufacturing
Hauser Knife has the philosophy of making our product the very best using what ever tools we have available. We do use some CNC equipment to rough in our knives. That being said...about 75% of our work is hand done. To get the fit and finish of the handles and final grind on the blade there is simply no escaping the "love" that has to be applied to each knife. While our knives are not perfect and definitely look hand made...I make them as pretty as I know how. I try hard to make each knife look exactly like the next...but there are always tiny variations.
Our first publicly sold knife is our model K1...yep that stands for "Knife number one". How did it come about? My friend Mike (who brands cattle from horseback every branding season) Suggested I think about making a small "cowboy knife" which is a small knife usually worn in a laydown sheath on the small of a guys back. Easy to reach and out of the way. If a rider gets pinned by a rope and an angry cow he can reach back and get his little knife and free himself. I realized the knife he was describing sounded like the perfect EDC (every day carry) for the average Joe.
Mike and I were in a Church Board meeting one day and I was fighting boredom and since I always draw knives when bored I started sketching a small knife on the border of the agenda notes...then I tipped the drawing to show Mike who was sitting across the narrow table from me....He says real quiet like..."Smaller...." so I erase some of it and re-sketch and show him again...and again he says "Smaller..." So I start erasing everything that does not absolutely need to be there and then a quick re-sketch again...I tip the drawing his way and he whispers..."Perfect!" The knife you see on our website is very close to that sketch! I cannot remember what the meeting was about though...
We have our sheaths made for us by Kinna Custom Sheaths of Havre Montana. Mark Kinna uses top of the line Wickett & Craig leather and has designed an attractive, lightweight, and strong sheath for our EDC/Cowboy knife. The knife/sheath combo is a very nice looking rig and one you will be proud to own for a lifetime.
Hauser Knife and Kinna Custom Sheaths are happy to be part of a group of craftsman that are honored to still be making things in America. We hope you find value in a fine knife and sheath made in the USA!
Care of your Hauser Knife
While A2 steel has a high level of chromium alloy in it...It is NOT a stainless steel and will rust if misused or not properly cared for. Anytime you use your knife on something wet or even damp, wipe it dry before sheathing it. You can lightly oil the blade occasionally. Mineral oil is a safe non-toxic oil that will keep the rust away. If you are going to store the blade for any amount of time take it out of the sheath. Leather wicks moisture out of the air and contains enough compounds from tanning to rust the blade.
Most A2 blade lovers recognize that A2 blades acquire a patina over time. Many love the light surface coloration. If you prefer the blade always shiny purchase Flitz or Happich's Semi-Chrome and you can keep a high degree of polish on your knife blade. If you have a preferred polish it should be safe to use...these two are the ones we have some experience with.
Your knife handles are easily cared for with soap and water and then immediately drying after being washed.
Thanks for visiting this page! We hope we have given you some insight into what we think makes a good knife and how we got to making that knife!