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Knife shops, factories & museums of Spain.

Discussion in 'Traditional Folders and Fixed Blades' started by I'mSoSharp, May 25, 2019.

  1. I'mSoSharp

    I'mSoSharp Basic Member Basic Member

    530
    Mar 8, 2011
    I've just been for a week in Granada & visited a couple of very nice knife shops (that are next door to one another) so thought I'd share them here.
    As I'm planning to visit more knife related places soon I thought I'd open a thread, it might help anybody visiting to find something of interest as Spain still has a fairly healthy cutlery industry.

    [​IMG]

    The two shops.
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Many more displays similar to these displaying everything from wall hanging tourist tat through factory traditionals & modern plus hand made.
    I bought a couple of traditionals that I'll get some pics of & post up soon.

    The shops-
    https://www.google.com/search?q=el+...Da%20J.Ruiz%20-%20El%20llav%C3%ADn%20de%20oro

    https://www.google.com/search?q=cuchilleria+nunez+ruiz+granada&oq=cuchilleria+nunez+ruiz+granada&aqs=chrome..69i57.13486j0j9&client=tablet-android-pega&sourceid=chrome-mobile&ie=UTF-8#trex=m_t:lcl_akp,rc_f:nav,rc_ludocids:13990824341611267894,rc_q:Cuchiller%C3%ADa%20Nu%C3%B1ez%20Ruiz%20-%20Hoja%20de%20Acero,ru_q:Cuchiller%C3%ADa%20Nu%C3%B1ez%20Ruiz%20-%20Hoja%20de%20Acero
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2019
    jux t, Fodderwing, Eli Chaps and 8 others like this.
  2. Jack Black

    Jack Black Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 2, 2005
    Great thread idea, thanks :thumbsup:
     
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  3. Will Power

    Will Power

    Jan 18, 2007
    Very promising thread, hope others can add to it. Or even historical shots of defunct knife shops?

    I've seen quite a few knives in that window I fancy ;) why can't I live round the corner (idea for retirement place :D)
     
    I'mSoSharp and Prester John like this.
  4. scrteened porch

    scrteened porch Basic Member Basic Member

    Feb 19, 2012
    Reason enough to get a new passport.
     
    I'mSoSharp and Prester John like this.
  5. Pinemoon

    Pinemoon Gold Member Gold Member

    920
    Mar 25, 2005
    RayseM, Fodderwing, Llasi and 2 others like this.
  6. I'mSoSharp

    I'mSoSharp Basic Member Basic Member

    530
    Mar 8, 2011
    Just holidaying in Granada as it's a nice few hours ride from where I live. I'll probably visit Albacete some time soon, going to JJ Martinez at Santa Cruz on the way. Badajoz is also a good area for manufacturers that I intend to visit. Manufacturing is spread around, I visited Muela's factory shop in Ciudad Real below Toledo a while ago but didn't take any pics.

    Nice knives you have there :thumbsup:
     
    Last edited: May 25, 2019
  7. herder

    herder Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 24, 2007
    Wonderful pictures!!!
    It's so good to see that some countries still have a very active cutlery culture. I was in Maniago, Italy, a few years back during a week long cutlery festival throughout the town.
    Maniago also has a fantastic cutlery museum. Pictures enclosed.

    Maniago Cutlery Museum Sign (1484x835).jpg

    Maniago Cutlery Museum (1408x792).jpg

    Maniago Cutlery Museum brochure inside_20140801_0001 (1200x820).jpg
     
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  8. I'mSoSharp

    I'mSoSharp Basic Member Basic Member

    530
    Mar 8, 2011
    These are the knives I picked up in Granada.

    Nothing special, a JJ Martinez & a Joker slip-joint both in carbon.
    [​IMG]

    I got them because I had different sizes in both models already that I really like, super strong spring on the JJ Martinez but very badly finished, if you fancy one don't expect good f&f, if you are handy with sand paper & wire wool & don't mind spending some time smoothing things out then it can make a lovely knife. The Jokers are very well finished, both olive & beech wood scales benefitted from a wire wooling & oiling though.

    [​IMG]

    The knives on offer were by far stainless, I'd guess less than 5% were carbon.
     
  9. lonestar1979

    lonestar1979

    Mar 2, 2014
    I love Spanish and Italian traditional knives,wish i could handle some of them before ordering,cant see details on pictures.
     
    I'mSoSharp likes this.
  10. I'mSoSharp

    I'mSoSharp Basic Member Basic Member

    530
    Mar 8, 2011
    Yes, amongst the knives I've handled in shops the fit & finish can be quite varied. Some makes are more consistent than others, the older the factory generally the more hit & miss even in the same model.
    The JJ Martinez model above I really like but both sizes needed finishing, the Jokers seem to be reliably good.
     
  11. 5K Qs

    5K Qs Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 20, 2014
    Thanks for starting this interesting thread, @I'mSoSharp! :cool::thumbsup::thumbsup: It brings back some very good memories for me. My daughter, who lived in Madrid at the time, took me to Granada December 28-30, 2014. We had a fantastic time there, visiting Alhambra, the Catedral de Granada, and the Royal Chapel where Ferdinand and Isabella are buried. We also enjoyed walking around the city, including the hilly Sacromonte neighborhood, or "gypsy quarter", north of Alhambra.

    At my insistence, my daughter helped me look for a cuchilleria in Granada, and we found the two in your photo across a little plaza just south of the cathedral. I actually preferred the smaller shop (the 4th and 5th doors down to the right in your pic); I thought the staff was more friendly and helpful there. Also, the name or description of the smaller shop, Hoja de Acero (Steel Blades) seemed more relevant to me than that of the larger shop, El Llavín de Oro (The Golden Latchkey).
    (Do you happen to know if there's a relationship of some kind between the two shops? Both have "Ruiz" in their names: Cuchilleria J. Ruiz for the larger shop and Cuchilleria Nuñez Ruiz for the smaller.)

    Since I don't speak Spanish, my daughter served as my translator/agent/negotiator when I wanted to buy a knife. I bought this JJ Martinez navaja de campaña there:
    [​IMG]
    It was a knife that I hoped to purchase in Spain, based on recommendations of BF members before my trip. My daughter had taken me to Seville before we went to Granada, and I wanted to buy it at Cuchilleria Sevilla, but the proprietor didn't carry a carbon steel model. In Granada, my daughter had to convince the salesperson that her father's advanced age and farm background qualified him for a non-stainless model, and he finally went in a back room to get a carbon model for me. Unfortunately, as I used the knife when I returned home from Spain, it soon became clear that it had a stainless blade after all!

    Since our hotel was within easy walking distance of the cuchillerias, I went back a couple of times to do some window shopping, and decided to buy a small Joker folder with asta autentica (genuine bull horn) covers before we left the city. But when I stopped at the shop to do so, they were closed in the early afternoon. Later in my almost 3-week visit to my daughter, she took me to Toledo for a day, and I saw the Joker knife there and purchased it for a much higher price. Here's a photo of my Granada-inspired horn Joker:
    [​IMG]

    While my daughter was negotiating on my behalf for the navaja d campaña mentioned above, I saw another JJ Martinez model that appealed to me, a simple little knife with an anchor engraved on the synthetic handle. Later, I found that same knife on a Spanish vendor's website and had my daughter order it for me and deliver it when she made a trip back to the States. Here's a pic of the Martinez marinera that first caught my eye in a Granada cuchilleria:
    [​IMG]

    One final remark concerning the display of two columns of knives from your post. The eighth knife from the top in the right column (or second from the bottom :rolleyes:) certainly confirms my suspicions that the toothpick pattern has roots in Spanish navajas. :cool::thumbsup:

    I hope to return to this thread to post more of my Spanish knives.

    - GT
     
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  12. Prester John

    Prester John Gold Member Gold Member

    May 20, 2018
    Fascinating, as Spock would say! Beautiful knives, Gary. Would love to visit Spain someday.
    I agree that the toothpick pattern is inspired by the Spanish navajas. Came to that conclusion handling my daughter's Case Green Kyrinite medium Texas Toothpick (much better size than the small one--about 4 & 1/4 in. closed, I think). May look for the burnt amber bone medium toothpick Case is producing in 2019. Bone over synthetic every time!
    Look forward to your future posts.
     
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  13. 5K Qs

    5K Qs Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 20, 2014
    Thanks, Vince. My visit to my daughter in Spain has been my only trip to Europe and was an unforgettable experience! :):thumbsup::thumbsup:

    I concur that the tiny toothpicks don't have much going for them, but a toothpick of at least 4 inches (preferably with 2 blades, for me) is an appealing pattern. :cool::cool::thumbsup: Here's a pic of an old clip/pen Imperial, one of my favorite knives:
    tootpick.open.birdbath.jpg

    - GT
     
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  14. Prester John

    Prester John Gold Member Gold Member

    May 20, 2018
    When you said you were not a fan of clip blades, I presume you must mean only certain styles. That's an attractive Imperial.
     
  15. kamagong

    kamagong

    Jan 13, 2001
    That's the opposite of my experience. Granted, I have little experience with Spanish knives only owning a single specimen from Joker, Aitor, and Cudeman, but the Joker I own has the worst fit and finish of the bunch. It's in the running for worst fit and finish out of all my knives.

    Looks fine at a glance.

    [​IMG]

    Terrible gaps.

    [​IMG]

    What's the point of adding a finial when so little effort is made at finishing it properly? I don't see any attempt at making the bolster, liner, and spring flush with each other.

    [​IMG]
     
  16. I'mSoSharp

    I'mSoSharp Basic Member Basic Member

    530
    Mar 8, 2011
    That looks horrible @kamagong. I take my statement back ;)

    I like the look of Navaja's but they aren't on my shopping list, I gravitate towards knives I can/could use so not that keen on decorations though maybe a nice one will follow me home from my travels one day as something to fondle :)
     
  17. kamagong

    kamagong

    Jan 13, 2001
    It's strange, but I rather like the knife. It was a gift from my brother when he spent a semester studying in Spain. The navaja is a most Spanish of patterns.

    I'd never recommend someone buy a Joker though.
     
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  18. I'mSoSharp

    I'mSoSharp Basic Member Basic Member

    530
    Mar 8, 2011
    I've just got back from Albacete, a town I've been wanting to visit for quite some time.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I wasn't disappointed.

    More soon ;)
     
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  19. Sidehill Gouger

    Sidehill Gouger

    Dec 29, 2007
    Albacete has more cutlery shops than any city I've been in. The cutlery museum is also very good.
     
  20. Camillus

    Camillus Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 3, 2015
    When I was in Sheffield I picked up a couple of the Wright and Rodgers knives and I also went for ‘nothing special’ patterns in rosewood and delrin - simply because it was special for me to see them in the customary setting, and to know that these were the ‘local knife’ of the region.

    You don’t always need to buy the fancy collector/tourist version, even if you are a traveller with a desire to pick up mementos.
     
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