Latest News and Information
4/25: Case XX Observation (Rant)
We don’t try and stock all new Case knives, but we do try to have a fair assortment. I have to say, it is getting harder and harder to get in patterns that I can get excited about. Their build quality seems to be slipping again. Three blade knives all seem to have bad rub; as in, no attempt at all to clear the blades. Unwrapping knives and they have buff compound caked on them. Turquoise Curly Maple seems like a good idea; but if the maple isn’t “curly” it is not nearly as enticing. At least take the time to flush the joints before you ship the knives so my customers don’t have to….. (rant over)
4/3: Buttons, Buttons, Who Got a Button
Several years ago GEC thought it would be a novel idea to randomly drop a button (or pin as some call them), into tubes. The buttons are made up specifically for the pattern being produced. In the beginning it felt like the odds were about 1 in 3; maybe 1 in 4. But, recently they officially say 1 in 5, but I have noticed my “winners” are nowhere near that due to some anomaly in fulfillment. At the same time, collecting of the buttons has caught on; and if not collecting per se – then at least a certain expectation. As I am writing this, GEC is producing the #97 Coke Bottle. Since this run was so big, they decided to drop buttons in Tidioute only. So, another dealer had a good idea of just purchasing buttons from GEC to account for every knife they purchased. GEC won’t actually look to see how many a dealer needs to fill the remaining tubes, so your option is to just buy a button for each tube, if you want to be sure. So, now a handful of dealers have followed suit and put in a standing order for a button to put in every tube. CollectorKnives has caved to the pressure. Just kidding, it was a good idea and a nice bonus to the customers – although the original intention of a “cracker jack” style surprise is now gone. So, for those that collect buttons, CK will now purchase buttons for each tube in every run where GEC makes buttons. And you may get two, because they come in a baggie and we must add them to the tubes once they arrive here – and the QC of the guy dropping the buttons leaves a little to be desired…..
3/30: CollectorKnives on eBay
We get knives in many ways. Factory standard production, of course; purchasing collections; and buying out other dealers are main sources. Also, there are times when we will run an sfo and have someone send back a knife simply because the didn’t like the color or the feel in their hand. When it is a #77 or #85, I want so bad to just tell them “You really probably want to just keep the knife” – but I keep my mouth shut. Cuttin’ to the chase – we have tried to move these types of items two different ways. We have put them on the store website and got chewed out because there was no warning, etc. etc. We have also run them on eBay starting at $1 with no reserve – and been chewed out for that. So, eBay is easier and generally a better market for these types of knives, thus we will do this from time to time. We will never hold back any knife bought directly from the factory just to sell later on eBay; but if any of the above circumstances put us in the situation, there may be knives that we take to eBay.
Finally, many times when there is a short run or an sfo that does not sell out to the Early Reservers or comes back as a return, I will buy them and put them in my kids “rainy day” collection. Some they get attached to and put in their permanent collection; some they do not and when they go into fund raising mode they ask me to run them on my personal account (knifeswapper). Both are now driving age and one is graduating high school this year – so I expect a lot of rainy days.
So, just wanted to offer a little bit of transparency for these types of sales because it seems like there is always someone wanting to shame me for running eBay auctions. But anyone that deals with CollectorKnives should know we bend over backwards to be completely fair every time.
3/15: A lot can change in a day..
The first shipment of #97 Maroon Micarta models that came in had a very nice action. I even made a video to show how nice they were. Rated the model a 9 due to perfect action IMO. But the second shipment and even the Jig Cherry Wood models are a bit lighter on the snap. Enough so that I dropped the rating to a 7. Had one customer tell me they just need a quick flushing and oiling; but I wish they could have kept it up.
6/16: A little fine tuning to Shipping cost structure
One of the most critical components of knife sales these days is shipping. Nobody wants their knife to show up in a rolled up bubble envelope. Nobody wants to pay as much for shipping as they do the knife. And, to be brutally honest, free shipping is a gimmick these days – but it is prevalent, so we play along trying to be as transparent as possible. Also, there was a time where there was a large difference in First Class versus Priority versus Express. There is still a good price difference these days, but typically Express is one day faster than Priority and two days faster than First Class. So, we have greatly complicated our lives by restructuring your shipping options to allow for all three levels on many knives. Generally, any single knife under $99 will have the option of all three and any purchase over $99 will have the option of Priority or Express. All knives still get shipped in a box with tracking; and small boxes will be shrink wrapped as always.
11/3: Cost of Living for Knife Nuts Creeping Up
Well made knives seem borderline expensive these days. I guess all prices go up over time, but we don’t have to like it! It seems to me that prices have risen nearly 20% over the last five years. Taking the same GEC pattern and charting it over time shows consistent increases in pricing. My concern is that we don’t get to the point that they are not the value that they are today; because prices are hard to move down at the factory given everything else is equal. But the silver lining is that the tide raises all ships – so those knives in the display, vault, or dresser top are worth a bit more as well.
9/25: MAPP Versus Member Pricing
These days MAPP (minimum advertised pricing policy) has become prevalent with knife manufacturers. We are not fans, because we believe the makers should make the knives and let the dealers sell the knives. In most cases the MAPP price has more margin built in than we feel is necessary. In our discussions with our legal counsel, we have determined that this “advertised” pricing policy does not have force once our customers become CollectorKnives website members. Thus, always login before shopping; as we will offer our members a lower price on any items that the MAPP pricing includes more margin than is necessary.
8/4: Guaranteed Reservations
Just a fair warning. Lately the “no-show” rate on Guaranteed Reserves has gotten very high; and this is skewing our entire factory ordering system. The old Early Reserve system was great; but it had its shortcomings on secondary functions. One such function was spotting customers that put in a “Sure” reservation, but never actually purchased the product. The new site is greatly improved since the reservations and the purchases are made on the same site. Long story short; don’t put a “Sure” reservation on a knife unless you are “Sure” you can pick it up. Because the new system IS going to flag these and lock those out of future “Sure” reservations. There are always valid reasons not to show up; but to be fair to everyone involved we will have to start enforcing this. Obviously there will be some way to get back in good standing, but we will have to figure that out as we go forward.
7/27: Early Reserves
No, we did not throw all of the Early Reservations away when we moved to the new system ;> The old system still exists for all reservations made prior to 7/23/17; and the new system will be used from that point on. Once all knives on the old system have been produced as normal, we will dismantle it.
7/24: New Website and getting settled in.
Welcome to the new website.
We have done months worth of development and testing to try and make this move as simple as possible. But if you have any questions or concerns; or see something that doesn’t look right – do not hesitate to contact us.