Catastrophic blade failure

Discussion in 'Himalayan Imports' started by ferguson, Oct 6, 2006.

  1. ferguson


    Feb 21, 2001
    I'm not typing too well, as the pain pill is working pretty well. So I'll just copy what I emailed Yangdu earlier this evening. I'll take some pictures of the blade tomorrow. I still love HI. You can get a lemon from even the best maker. I've got to figure out a safer way to test though. :eek:


    Hello dear aunt Yangdu,

    Sorry to give you this bad news. I received my Museum model today. As I always do, I tested it out by doing some chopping on an oak log. I had chopped about 10 or 20 times and the blade broke, just inside the bolster. When it broke the blade flipped back and cut the back of my thumb where it joins my hand. I just got back from the doctor. He stitched it up inside and out. There is some tendon damage, and it cut into the joint a little. I can move the thumb, so there may not be any permanent damage.

    I hate to give you this news, and I know you will feel terrible about it. Please don't worry about it, as I will be fine. I just wanted to let you know about it before I post on the forum. I'll send the khukuri back to you next week so you can see what happened. The tang was just too hard. Actually I feel very lucky. It could have been much worse.

    Again, please don't feel badly. These things are just a part of life.

    Your friend,
    Steve Ferguson
  2. not2sharp

    not2sharp Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 29, 1999
    Steve, I am sorry to hear about the accident. I hope you heal quickly and completely. What a lousy way to pass a day.

  3. Hey Steve, Very sorry to hear about your accident! Sounds like it certainly did a bit of damage but glad to hear that it wasn't any worse. Please take care of it and treat it with care. You are definately a Khuk lover.
  4. Bladite

    Bladite ǝɹnsıǝן ɟo uɐɯǝןʇuǝb Moderator

    Feb 28, 2003
    oof. ouch. sorry to hear about it all around.

    heal fast and well and scar free!

    perhaps the safety thread needs amending... safety testing... until and if you can trust your given new tool... wear head and full face or at least eye protection for the love of god.

    good solid work gloves. possibly with kevlar if worried.

    heavy shirt, heavy pants, steel toed boots?

    i've seen pictures of y'all in short sleeve shirts, shorts, teva, hacking away. good for a trusted blade? maybe. still, metal chips, bark flies, you only have two *OW* er one eye...

    be safe guys!

  5. munk


    Mar 22, 2002
    That's the worse kind of failure, and real sorry to hear you got hurt. Prayers from Montana for a complete recovery.
    It makes me heart sick, for you and for HI.

  6. munk


    Mar 22, 2002
    I agree with Bladite- and think his suggestion is excellent. Safety gear during initial test. Bill always said test the hell out of them to make sure yours is not a dud. Add to this the dress and equipment as Bladite suggested.

    The Kamis need a good talking to, if not more. That's how I feel about it.

    Is there any way to test the blades differently? I mean, would another 'attack' angle of approach changed anything?

    I plan on the gloves, already wear glasses, thick clothing and boots. I'm going to start off easy and go progressively harder, as I always do, but doubt this would have made a difference in this case. Metal fails all at once often. I remember the Ruger cylinders blowing up without warning.

  7. Nasty

    Nasty Chief Cook & Bottle Wash

    Nov 11, 2003
    Smoke and Song for you my friend...

    The kamis need to have a serious talking to.
  8. hollowdweller


    Sep 22, 2003
    Yikes! Something that we all should keep in mind for sure!

    Ferguson hope your hand heals up that totally sucks.
  9. Yvsa


    May 18, 1999
    Smoke & Song from Oklahoma as well my friend.

    Having one break inside the bolster can indeed be catostrophic to the human body!!!! :eek: :(
    I'm just glad it wasn't any worse than it was, you could've cut the tendon in two and had serious problems with your thumb the rest of your life. Follow the Drs' orders to the letter and try not to put any more strain on the nicked tendon than you absolutely have to.
    I've fortunately never cut a tendon but it's a damned wonder. I hear that a nicked tendon can be terribly sore and hope you don't have those problems!!!!
  10. namaarie


    Aug 23, 2004
    Jesus, I'm sorry to hear it! Heal fast. Yvsa said it: listen to the docs about what you can and can't do. If you strain too much, you can hurt it much worse. But in reality, remember that chicks dig scars. :) This one sounds like it will be a real keeper! Post pics.

    Yeah, gloves, glasses, heavy clothes are all great ideas. I will wear them from now on. Reality check, I guess. Even HI's can fail from time to time.

  11. JStrider


    Sep 1, 2006
    eeep man, scary

    I wore my hiking boots, leather gardening gloves and glasses when I first tested mine out... seemed fine

    so now I just keep the boots and glasses...

    heal fast and well
  12. namaarie


    Aug 23, 2004
    Kumar, wasn't it? I'm surprised. I love his work, very creative, very solid. I wonder if it had something to do with the metal handle? Do you suppose the more rigid handle, or perhaps the heat associated with putting the blade in a metal handle could cause a weakening of the blade or tang? Just a thought.

    I guess the Kami will need to be talked-to. People must be held accountable. That said, he's still a fabulous Kami in my book, and surely deserves to stay on.

  13. CallsThunder


    May 10, 2004
    Very sorry to hear of your accident. Thanks for sharing your story. This will help us all to remember that these khuks are serious blades and should always be given respect. Be well.
  14. ACStudios


    Apr 9, 2001
    Ouch... prayers from Wyoming. Heal up fast!

  15. Skyler R.

    Skyler R.

    Dec 27, 2005
    Sorry to hear about what happened Steve. Get well soon. :thumbup:
  16. Bladite

    Bladite ǝɹnsıǝן ɟo uɐɯǝןʇuǝb Moderator

    Feb 28, 2003
    perhaps the brazing? yes. affected any heat treat and probably what? cooled too fast then? made it brittle?

    how to test? well, the gransfor bruks folx tap and smack their axes a bit with a metal hammer - perhaps something not as hard as the item itself so as to not mark it...

    but i'd guess that if i were to tap a hammer up and down the spine, right down to the bolster, with somewhat increasing force, but not what i would call abuse... tha would test for brittle... then along the side of the blade, near the spine, not the edge...

    a slightly bent edge could be peened, but metal too thin won't take well to that. chips, crack, and splits, well, that's right out.


  17. littleknife


    Nov 29, 2000
    Steve, I am very sorry to hear about your injury. Please, check frequently with the doctors.
    I hope, your hand will heal completely.
    Please, take care.
  18. lefthandblack


    Jan 22, 2004
    Whoa! Godspeed with the healing process!

    I was wondering about those museum models. How is the handle attached? Like mentioned above, I wonder if the extra heat changes the temper of the steel so that it is more of a show piece than a working blade.

    I usually start out really slow testing any blade from any manufacturer but there really is no way to predict a flaw in the steel or the temper of the blade.

    Good luck man.
  19. Josh Feltman

    Josh Feltman

    Feb 12, 2001
    Yikes! Smoke going up for a quick recovery, Steve.
  20. jefptw


    Jun 2, 2006
    Sorry to hear about the mishap. All the above advice looks good. I won't presume to add to it. Prayers from Taiwan.


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