Rock Knives
by Stephen Hill

I'm Stephen Hill, , and I have been cutting stones for about five years now. By day I'm a journalist. I live in a small rural Iowa town. I enjoy cutting stones for the simple pleasure of releasing their potential beauty. I also sell some of my work. When I was a kid, my pockets were always full of rocks.

This Parker USA knife was only one of 165 made when I put Red Crazy Lace Agate Handles on it. It has nickel silver bolsters and a well patterned Damascus Steel blade. I bought a few slabs of the Agate from a central Iowa Rock Shop. He had just traded some Lake Superior Agates for the Red Crazy Lace. From What I could gather the crazy lace originated in the Southwestern United States.

This Schrade U.S.A. 7-0T started with nylon handles. They were replaced with African Tiger's-eye. Knifes of this size are difficult to cut on my 6" Diamond Genie grinder. The 5" closed length created some real tight spots.

When I look for great cutting material, I will more often than not find a couple of premium pieces at each rock shop I visit. Many shop owners have had some of their material for over 20 or 30 years. It's always a treat to find material that is no longer available from the big commercial sources.

I have to see and feel each piece of rough. Mail order won't work for me. I try to know a little about the origin of the stones I work with, but actually I sometimes get so excited about a really good piece of rough, I sometimes forget to ask. For the cutter origin is not always of paramount concern.

Index of Cut Rocks

Table of Contents

Bob Keller