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Mercator K55K


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#1 Chris Szaroleta

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Posted 19 March 2015 - 06:23 PM

Perhaps it was a mistake starting a new thread for this, but I have several pics to post and I'm also a little proud of the grab itself and the work I did to get it shiny again!

 

I'm sure most of you are familiar with the Mercator K55K (often called the Black Cat Knife), which can be found brand spanking new on a number of sites that you've likely been to as a result of everydaycarry.com (Best Made Co, Cool Material, Amazon, etc).  It's a simple design in an extremely thin folder that's been around since 1867.  It is a lockback, which is pretty awesome for regular EDC use.  Despite the lockback being somewhat unique to the K55K, it often gets compared to the French Douk Douk, which happens to be a slipjoint.  

 

Anyway, a quick history lesson (sorta) and the onto the pics!  So rumor has it that these were issued to German soldiers in both WWI and WWII, but there's no actual proof of that.  There is, on the other hand, no denying that many German soldiers did indeed carry these knives.  It's said that American soldiers would find them either on German soldiers, or just laying around, and then bring them back to the US.  In the 50's and 60's, these knives that were brought back from the war and handed down became popular in South Bronx street gangs.  The knife has remained in production since its inception in the mid 1800's, but the original manufacturer liquidated and sold of the business in 1995 to Otter-Messer, the company who still makes the knife today that you can find on all those sites I mentioned earlier.  

 

I picked mine up at a local antiques store after eyeballing it for months.  It was rusted and gritty to open and close, but he had a fair price on it (as far as I know) and then he dropped it down another 36% after my incessant haggling.  The story he provided was that a local WWII veteran brought it in to sell off with other artifacts he acquired in the war.  He even sweetened the deal for me by telling me that the vet was from my hometown - pretty cool!  Since I have no way of proving the validity of his tale, and because I'm having an awful time dating this knife (I've been given some information for people to call, so I'll update this with any new info), I simply don't know its age.  I'd like to believe his story and will continue to until the knife's true authenticity becomes known.  So here it is, in both before and after shots.  I have yet to sharpen then blade, but that's next on the agenda.   :) 

 

BEFORE 

tumblr_nlhasfK2bd1u25gmmo1_540.jpgtumblr_nlhat7X5mE1u25gmmo1_540.jpgtumblr_nlhauyJT1h1u25gmmo1_540.jpgtumblr_nlhb6am9li1u25gmmo1_540.jpg

 

AFTER 

tumblr_nlhayq5Zli1u25gmmo1_540.jpgtumblr_nlhazlLpwm1u25gmmo1_540.jpgtumblr_nlhb0ckMr41u25gmmo1_540.jpgtumblr_nlhb4397y11u25gmmo1_540.jpg


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#2 Mel R.

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Posted 19 March 2015 - 06:27 PM

Nice work, Chris. Looks great.


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#3 Chris Szaroleta

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Posted 19 March 2015 - 06:38 PM

Nice work, Chris. Looks great.

 

Thanks, Mel!



#4 Stupendous Walrus

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Posted 19 March 2015 - 09:26 PM

Stellar work Chris. It still shows the well earned wear of a loved and used tool, but without the damage. Looks great.
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#5 Dom

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Posted 19 March 2015 - 09:56 PM

Nice Chris!
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#6 Chris Szaroleta

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Posted 19 March 2015 - 10:01 PM

Thanks, gang! I'm still looking forward to determining it's actual age, but in the meantime, the parent company is now putting out a jaw dropping version with a brass handle...wow!

#7 Dixie

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Posted 19 March 2015 - 11:40 PM

Nice work chris. It shows how deeply you are in love with knives ;)


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Its easy to do anything but hard to remove it.

My never ending love to assisted opening knives


#8 Jambon

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Posted 20 March 2015 - 02:25 AM

I love this knife. I'm loving your work. I think the fact that the rear spacer is red puts it in the older age bracket. I am no expert but I believe the modern ones are black.
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#9 Chris Szaroleta

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Posted 20 March 2015 - 01:14 PM

I love this knife. I'm loving your work. I think the fact that the rear spacer is red puts it in the older age bracket. I am no expert but I believe the modern ones are black.

 

I think you're right, but I still can't find anything to prove it!   :huh:



#10 Jambon

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Posted 27 March 2015 - 02:03 PM

Chris I know you have got a brass thing going at the moment. Have you seen thishttp://www.heinnie.c...-mercator-brass
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#11 Marc

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Posted 28 March 2015 - 12:45 PM

Very nice restoration job, Chris.  It cleaned up very well.  I really like the look of the red spacer on the back.


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#12 Stupendous Walrus

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Posted 29 March 2015 - 01:48 PM

Chris I know you have got a brass thing going at the moment. Have you seen thishttp://www.heinnie.c...-mercator-brass

That's gorgeous!


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#13 Harshit Gupta

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Posted 29 March 2015 - 11:50 PM

Perhaps it was a mistake starting a new thread for this, but I have several pics to post and I'm also a little proud of the grab itself and the work I did to get it shiny again!

 

I'm sure most of you are familiar with the Mercator K55K (often called the Black Cat Knife), which can be found brand spanking new on a number of sites that you've likely been to as a result of everydaycarry.com (Best Made Co, Cool Material, Amazon, etc).  It's a simple design in an extremely thin folder that's been around since 1867.  It is a lockback, which is pretty awesome for regular EDC use.  Despite the lockback being somewhat unique to the K55K, it often gets compared to the French Douk Douk, which happens to be a slipjoint.  

 

Anyway, a quick history lesson (sorta) and the onto the pics!  So rumor has it that these were issued to German soldiers in both WWI and WWII, but there's no actual proof of that.  There is, on the other hand, no denying that many German soldiers did indeed carry these knives.  It's said that American soldiers would find them either on German soldiers, or just laying around, and then bring them back to the US.  In the 50's and 60's, these knives that were brought back from the war and handed down became popular in South Bronx street gangs.  The knife has remained in production since its inception in the mid 1800's, but the original manufacturer liquidated and sold of the business in 1995 to Otter-Messer, the company who still makes the knife today that you can find on all those sites I mentioned earlier.  

 

I picked mine up at a local antiques store after eyeballing it for months.  It was rusted and gritty to open and close, but he had a fair price on it (as far as I know) and then he dropped it down another 36% after my incessant haggling.  The story he provided was that a local WWII veteran brought it in to sell off with other artifacts he acquired in the war.  He even sweetened the deal for me by telling me that the vet was from my hometown - pretty cool!  Since I have no way of proving the validity of his tale, and because I'm having an awful time dating this knife (I've been given some information for people to call, so I'll update this with any new info), I simply don't know its age.  I'd like to believe his story and will continue to until the knife's true authenticity becomes known.  So here it is, in both before and after shots.  I have yet to sharpen then blade, but that's next on the agenda.   :)

 

BEFORE 

tumblr_nlhasfK2bd1u25gmmo1_540.jpgtumblr_nlhat7X5mE1u25gmmo1_540.jpgtumblr_nlhauyJT1h1u25gmmo1_540.jpgtumblr_nlhb6am9li1u25gmmo1_540.jpg

 

AFTER

tumblr_nlhayq5Zli1u25gmmo1_540.jpgtumblr_nlhazlLpwm1u25gmmo1_540.jpgtumblr_nlhb0ckMr41u25gmmo1_540.jpgtumblr_nlhb4397y11u25gmmo1_540.jpg

Really nice work done on these knives. Really appreciable.


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When you think of something, Go for it.......

Love to Carry victorinox trekking Knives and leatherman multitools for outdoors survival.

 


#14 Chris Szaroleta

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Posted 01 April 2015 - 11:34 AM

Chris I know you have got a brass thing going at the moment. Have you seen thishttp://www.heinnie.c...-mercator-brass

 

I have seen that, James!  

 

When attempting my background research to date my K55K, I spent a bit of time on the Otter-Messer site.  They had the brass version posted, but with a special note that they won't be shipping it to America because they have an exclusive contract for this knife to be sold in the USA through Best Made Co.  Since I wasn't sure what the emblem would look like on the Best Made version, I was already plotting to buy it directly from Otter-Messer and have it shipped to someone in Canada (I'm looking at you Walrus and Marc) so that they could then forward it on to me.   

 

Luckily, the insignia on the Best Made Co. version isn't too bad at all...not AS cool as the Otter-Messer logo, but still cool.  It has "BEST" on one side and "MADE" on the other.  I'm so pumped to get my hands on this bad boy.  The one thing I'm looking forward to is getting a Spyderco wire clip and seeing if I can get it attached to this knife once received.  

 

IMG_0994-v3_1024x1024.jpg?v=1427386498


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#15 Jim D

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Posted 01 April 2015 - 12:58 PM

Very Very nice!!

 

I have spent quite some time on the Otter-Messer site but I have to confess that this one is much more attractive to me.

Hmm, might have to put in an order so I can pick it up next week in Texas?

 

As I stated earlier, being a member here will be expensive! :D

 

Jim


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#16 Marc

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Posted 01 April 2015 - 01:46 PM

I have seen that, James!  

 

When attempting my background research to date my K55K, I spent a bit of time on the Otter-Messer site.  They had the brass version posted, but with a special note that they won't be shipping it to America because they have an exclusive contract for this knife to be sold in the USA through Best Made Co.  Since I wasn't sure what the emblem would look like on the Best Made version, I was already plotting to buy it directly from Otter-Messer and have it shipped to someone in Canada (I'm looking at you Walrus and Marc) so that they could then forward it on to me.   

 

 

Sounds like a great idea, Chris.  Ship it to my house and .... and .... what did you want me to do with it after I get it ??? Wha'??? Sorry, can't hear you!   :P


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#17 Chris Szaroleta

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Posted 02 April 2015 - 04:20 PM

Sounds like a great idea, Chris.  Ship it to my house and .... and .... what did you want me to do with it after I get it ??? Wha'??? Sorry, can't hear you!   :P

 

HAHAHAHAHA!!!  You were going to be my go-to guy, Marc!  Walrus can only sorta be trusted...  :D


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#18 Stupendous Walrus

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Posted 03 April 2015 - 12:28 AM

There is no situation on Earth where I would be okay with Chris blindly sending things to my house. #horseporn
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#19 Chris Szaroleta

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Posted 03 April 2015 - 09:18 AM

There is no situation on Earth where I would be okay with Chris blindly sending things to my house. #horseporn

 

#truth


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#20 maximillion

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Posted 28 July 2015 - 08:15 PM

I've got a couple of the mercators, but neither have the cat stamp or writing on one side of handle. Both say Mercator on one side of base of blade and solingen germany on other, as well as mercator germany on spine of handle. They seem quite old but no idea of age. Any help appreciated. Really quite interested in age. Cheers!






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