Traditional Automatic/Switchblade??

Discussion in 'Traditional Folders and Fixed Blades' started by Aryan29, Aug 6, 2018.

Can Automatic/Switchblades be termed as Traditional folders?

  1. Yes

  2. No

  3. Maybe

Results are only viewable after voting.
  1. Aryan29


    May 20, 2018
    Hello All,
    I am curious to know whether switchblade knives/Automatic folders can be considered as traditional knives? What do you think?

    Per Wikipedia these are in existence since mid 18th century.Examples of steel automatic folding knives from Sheffield England have crown markings that date to 1840....

    Thanks in advance for any info and additional details, write ups and fotos welcome :thumbsup:

    PS: attaching here a screen shot of the wiki page from my phone.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Aug 6, 2018
    IEN710 likes this.
  2. Jack Black

    Jack Black Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 2, 2005
    While there's a separate forum for them, they certainly ARE traditional, and get shown here from time to time. I'm not sure your thread really needs a poll. If you're interested in them, can I recommend Art of the Switchblade: The World's Concourse Examples by Neal Punchard and Dan Fuller, some superb historic examples in there :thumbsup:

    For the record, while Wikipedia is a useful resource, which most of us use, anyone can write or edit entries there, and it is unreliable and contains a fair bit of rubbish :thumbsup:
  3. Aryan29


    May 20, 2018
    Thanks for your reply, I will check out ur recommendation.
    I love this traditional forum and if Autos are traditional, want to confirm it thru the poll, coz in many discussions, we’ve seen some agree while many disagree due to ‘one hand opening’ of autos.

    This poll might become a fun exercise as it goes, but if 2-3 more members do not want the poll, thn I will withdraw it for sure.
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2018
    IEN710 and Jason9477 like this.
  4. Jack Black

    Jack Black Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 2, 2005
    It doesn't follow that ALL autos and switchblades are traditional obviously :) If I remember correctly, one of our mods has a nice example, which he shows occasionally. I don't have any objection to a poll, nor do I think anyone else will, but I regard it as slightly pointless, since the history of 'fly-open' knives is not a question of opinion, and their suitability for inclusion here is a matter for the mods, not general opinion :thumbsup:
  5. Aryan29


    May 20, 2018
    Im a big fan of traditional knives, autos included,
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2018
  6. Markesharp


    Mar 8, 2014
    Case made some beautiful switch blades in the 1920's -1930's if I remember correctly. Would love to see if anyone has any examples of those knives. :cool:
  7. Jolipapa

    Jolipapa Basic Member Basic Member

    Jun 4, 2015
    As often, Wikipedia proves to be less than exact...
    Chatellerault is an average town, home of the Descartes family and was famous for the high quality cutlers since the 13th century (several hundred before the Revolution, producing expensive folders, switchblades and "prostitute daggers"); the town was an important "Post" station half way on the Paris - Bordeaux road and many cutlers sold their knives to travellers.
    To have an idea of the high level of quality achieved :
    (the second part, after "Ailleurs aussi . . ." deals with imitations.)
    The number of cutlers declined during the 19th century. But the defeat in Waterloo showed that the weapon manufactures situated in the East were too easily endangered and it was decided to create the Manufacture d'Armes de Châtellerault (MAC). Many skilled cutlers came (good and steady wages, many social advantages, a good health service, the Manuchards as they were called could retire at 50 after 30 years of work), this led to the quick demise of smaller shops. Until 1830 the Manufacture was specialized in "armes blanches" (knives, swords, etc.) achieving both high quality and great quantities (8000 workers during WW1, the most important weapon factory in Europe).

    [​IMG] (all pictures ©
    Today, the only Chatellerault pattern still available is the "sword-knife" (second from the top) and is made mostly in Thiers (only one cutler left in Chatellerault).
    The pattern has been used in Thiers by Bargeon and many others for several sizes of automatics (I bought mine in 1970) also in Italy, a mix of Chatellerault and Genoese stylus. Winchester also had a similar pattern with a clip.

    The Admiral d'Estaing (no link with a former president, whose family bought a title of nobility, one was near the King of France at Bouvines) was a French noble of a very old family originating from the Aveyronese town of Estaing (# 25km of Laguiole, 10km from Espalion).
    The English Navy keeps a painful souvenirs of his campaigns against her ships as a privateer during the war in India... He was less successful during the US Independance War.
    He is reputed to have ordered a folding dagger he could use for dinner and hunting as well.
    To close this pedantic speech, imho these may well be considered as traditionals, even if I'm not very fond of them. :rolleyes::D
    Last edited: Aug 6, 2018
  8. Jack Black

    Jack Black Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 2, 2005
    Very informative JP :) :thumbsup:
    Prester John and Jolipapa like this.
  9. TheChunk91

    TheChunk91 Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 15, 2013
    Those were made by schrade, they had patents on their switches and made very good ones. They made them for other companies as well, like remington.
  10. mrknife

    mrknife Gold Member Gold Member

    May 9, 2010
    perhaps it is like the old adage, all thumbs are fingers but not all fingers are thumbs
  11. Sam Dean

    Sam Dean Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 3, 2012
    Here's a couple oldies I just happen to have in my desk drawer.

  12. Aryan29


    May 20, 2018
    Keep ‘em coming.
    Last edited: Feb 29, 2020
    IEN710 likes this.
  13. Aryan29


    May 20, 2018
    Very nice write up, excellent knives’ pics and info...
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2018
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  14. kfalk


    Mar 7, 2011
    Lol - that bottom one with the painted/coated pearl is like finding hardwood floors underneath your carpeting.

    Nice pair!
  15. traumkommode

    traumkommode Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 3, 2015
    I've had a couple of these in my life, one was given to my from my dad when I was a kid. Called a Paratrooper made by Schrade. The hook is actually chisel sharpened, ostensibly to cut the lines of your chute if you're stuck in a tree, although it is not automatically deployed like the main blade.

  16. brownshoe

    brownshoe I support this site with my MIND

    Sep 6, 2002
    Switchblades are very traditional. I think some of them are more traditional than the "modern traditionals" since many still use traditional materials and production methods. However in the past, the moderators have not allowed their discussion on this subforum and told people to take it to the auto forum. Maybe it's time for a change, since the auto forum doesn't really discuss traditional autos very much.
    Aryan29 likes this.
  17. Aryan29


    May 20, 2018
    We appreciate our mods for allowing us this thread/discussion about Switchblades/Autos here, altho theres a seperate sub forum for Autos.
    Many thanks.

    Its been a while I’ve been curious to know whether knife lovers thought switchblades as traditional, if to go by the info shared here, switchblades are in existence over 100s of years, and still a fav among many a knife people imho.
    IEN710, Prester John and Jason9477 like this.
  18. Hickory n steel

    Hickory n steel Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 11, 2016
    When I think of traditional and switchblade, the classic pen pattern press button Schrade is exactly what I think of.
  19. Peregrin

    Peregrin Traditional Forum Moderator Moderator Gold Member

    Sep 2, 2004
    I'll weigh in here to say the following.
    1. Switchblades/Automatic Knives are as traditional as any knife we discuss in this forum. If you need to be reminded what is considered, in general, to be traditional, there's a few posts that are stickied at the top of the forum page (this reminder is more for newer members then folks who post here all the time).
    2. There's a dedicated sub-forum for automatics,
    Since there is a dedicated sub-forum for automatics, threads that are started about automatic knives get moved there. We don't want to detract from an already established sub-forum.
    3. If you want to use this thread to discuss traditional automatic knives, then I'm ok with that. If my partner in crime @knarfeng sees it differently, that might change. If we start seeing them pop up in other threads more than they do now, then there's a good chance that all subsequent posts will be moved.
  20. Sam Dean

    Sam Dean Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 3, 2012
    GEC also made a run of lever lock auto's, an SFO for someone and Schrade branded. I don't know the history behind them, but from what I understand, this pattern & type of automatic has been around for a long time. Hubertus rings a bell; maybe that's what those were patterned after?

    Maybe someone with first hand experience can weigh-in with pics & info?

    @Peregrin - Thank you for letting this stay here. A traditional thread, dedicated to traditional automatics, is personally a welcome sight. Hopefully it can stay here & grow for a while.
    Aryan29 likes this.

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