LeGare, Tim (Stone Knife Forge)
Tim has been making knives for 30 years, starting in his grandfather’s garage in 1989. Using his grandfather’s bench grinder, he would regrind old kitchen knives, butter knives, old screws and nails, whatever he could find, and fashion them into rough knives. He made his first knife handle at the age of 16, and then became a granite fabricator to make a decent living for his family. In 2007, he started sculpting stone knives out of chunks of scrap granite, which lead him to name his small, humble shop the “Stone Knife Forge”, which it is still named today.
Tim realized that stone knives could easily shatter, which lead him to start experimenting with steel, actually dismantling the swing set his children had outgrown, and turning that steel into several different knife blades. This is when he learned to bevel, shape, and heat-treat the blades. He continues to make knives out of stone, as well as quality handmade stainless steel knives with a variety of handle materials, including granite, Micarta, and many natural woods, even incorporating wood from trees in his own backyard in Florida. He is open to suggestions for custom pieces.
Tim works by himself in a very primitive, old master tradition, with very little equipment, fashioning his knives the old-fashioned way. Everything from start to finish is done completely by hand, using mostly blood, sweat, and tears, and raw bars of steel. His shop is an old rundown garage in his backyard, with approximately $400 of equipment, and his forge is an old Weber grill with a handmade bellows. All of his knives are assembled with threaded pins to increase the durability of the knife and the handle. He has also made many of the threaded pins by hand.
Tim is self-educated in the science behind the chemistry and molecular composition of steel, and what it takes to make it yield to his will. He has a beautiful collection of his work, and has mainly gifted his creations to family and friends, including some handmade pieces of custom jewelry made from wood, granite, and stainless steel.
All of his knives carry a lifetime guarantee, and he rigorously checks his blades, including a file test for hardness and various chopping, cutting, and toughness tests.
The difference between Tim’s knives and other knife-makers is that he is sculpting knives by hand, much as an artist would create a piece of art, instead of using expensive machinery and several employees. Many knife makers today are more machinists than they are artists. So therein lies the difference. Each knife that Tim creates is truly a one-of-kind piece of art. We hope you will enjoy them as extremely functional pieces of art as much as Tim has enjoyed creating them for you.