As much as I appreciate all of the modern advances in cutlery materials and manufacturing technology, there’s just something about traditional knife design that calls to me. For this reason alone, the introduction of a line of traditional fixed-blade hunters from Hallmark is an irresistible siren song.
The new Robert Klaas/Kissing Crane “Euro Hunter” (Model 77) is a classic fixed-blade European-style hunting knife. Crafted from 8CR14 stainless steel (which is of Chinese origin and elementally compares to the 440 series of stainless steels), the knife has a 3-7/8-inch drop-point pattern blade, with a full-length tang. The blade is flat ground with a slight swedge that runs about an inch from the tip rearward along the back of the blade. Also, the back of the blade has a section of rounded jimping for positioning either the thumb for added purchase, or the forefinger for enhanced control. Other features found on the Euro Hunter are a brass guard, genuine stag handle scales (ram’s horn and jigged autumn bone scales are also available) and a brass-lined lanyard hole. Depending on the choice of handle material, the “Euro Hunter” ranges in price from $99.99 to $124.99.
Classic and Custom Hunters
The next model in this series is the “Classic Hunter” (Model KC 78), which is patterned after similar knives produced in this country during the last century. This knife also features an 8CR14 stainless full-tang blade. The blade pattern is a fully hollow-ground, elongated shallow clip that measures 3-1/2 inches in length. A nickel-silver guard separates the blade from the handle and keeps the forefinger from sliding forward onto the sharpened edge. The handle on my sample knife consists of pinned ram’s horn scales (jigged autumn bone and yellow Delrin scales are also available) set off by black, white and maroon spacers and finished with an aluminum pommel. Lastly, a Kissing Crane shield is inset into the scales. Prices for this model run from $49.99 to $61.99.
The “Custom Hunter” (Model KC 76) is the third and final knife in this series. When compared to the other two previously mentioned models, the blade is nearly twice the width from edge to blade back. The full-length tang, hollow-ground, drop-point design is also crafted from 8CR14 stainless steel. The guard is stainless and the handle scales are jigged autumn bone. This is a rugged knife that offers an abundance of versatility when dealing with game care chores. The “Custom Hunter” is priced at an affordable $74.99.
Each of these knives comes with a leather sheath that provides both containment security and safety. The “Euro Hunter” sheath has a retention strap that fastens onto a brass peg to keep the knife in the sheath. Both the “Classic Hunter” and the “Custom Hunter” sheaths are pouch-type with snug press-to-fit containment.