Des Horn Imvubu in Nitrobe 77 – Perfection in every way.

This is a sharp turn. A revolution: I have chosen a folder with no hole in the blade and no clip.
But it was love at first sight.
The carbon fiber handle are so smooth and rounded. The balance is perfect, thanks to its titanium liners.
The liners are blued and exquisite BTW. A jewel !
I could not put that folder back on Des Horn table at the FICX 2016. It was this kind of moment when your palm is connected to your heart. This knife will be mine. Period.

I have met Des many times this last decades and even three years ago I have ordered a Nitrobe 77 folder to him after my friend JD has bought one at Paris SICAC. JD loves small blades. I do prefer medium. I was glad a 4mm Nitrobe 77 stock was available since.
Nitrobe 77 is a very special steel with nitrogen instead of carbon. It is a kind of ÜberH1. Those Nitrogen Steel are just amazing.
Also the Nitrobe 77 while impervious to corrosion has the same “behavior” as 52100 which is, thanks to Ray Kirk, one my favorite steel.
To quote Cliff Stamp:
“-higher toughness at the same hardness/wear resistance
-much higher corrosion resistance, especially in extremes
-higher edge stability at the same wear resistance ”

To quote Marthinus (this knife is his grail)
“The original idea was to use NITROBE 77 at motor manufacturing of blades for cutters and blades for kitchen machines type blender. Samples were sent to producers in Europe, which in a few months, almost unanimously said they were extremely impressed with the durability of the blade, and that usually is 3 times higher than that of any stainless steel used in their production today. However, heat treatment is too complicated for them and they also prefer to buy 3 blades of conventional stainless steel than one of NITROBE 77 This steel has virtually no carbon (0.1%), which was replaced with nitrogen at 0.9%. It absolutely does not rust and the knife can be put in the dishwasher! The most impressive feature is the NITROBE 77 is its “superrezuchest” because smaller molecules than in steel RWL-34. The main difficulty in the manufacture of steel NITROBE 77 is its heat treatment, which includes a series of four cryogenic quenching in liquid nitrogen at a heating temperature were 1100 ° C and 3-times at intervals of 1 hour for the holidays began at 480 ° C. NITROBE 77 shows the greatest potential for using it as a knife blade. I used a lot of different steels to produce their knives, but 77 NITROBE much sharper and tougher than any steel I’ve ever used … ”

No hole. So I use my thumb on the talon of the blade to open it gently. It is fast.
No clip. I use a Bali-Song cocoon horizontaly on my belt or directly in my front pocket. No big deal as the knife is really confortable in the hand.

On my Bottle Butt test, it is not my number one cutter. The Nilakka is still the queen in that domain. But the Des Horn is one of my best !! It goes through plastic on a steady pace.

Now The 4mm thickworking Bowie blade is so gorgeous. Everytime I open it I got that “WOW” moment.
The edge is toothy. That the way Des likes it. I have strop it on leather. Now it cuts hairs in flight.
The lock is a Michael Walker liner lock. Falls in perfectly.

Des Horn Imvubu

The full spacer is also in Carbonfiber. Everything is light and strong.
Des Horn is a meticulous maker and every part of the knife is like high horlogery. It is smooth and reliable.
So meticulous that Des Horn’s shop is so clean. You could eat on the wooden floor. 😉
Also, owning a knife made by a true gentleman is a luxury. There is always some spirit of the maker in the tool.

I love also his philosophy: a knife is a tool. Which means: you can use it. Hard.
These are my intentions. To be contined


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