Tuesday, March 18

10E2341: R Murphy Knives - Made in USA Since 1850 - Part 2

Old logo dug up from the R. Murphy history page

Continued: last week I had the chance to visit R Murphy Knives - the 3rd oldest knife factory in US (see Part 1) and the tour continues below...

Remember the hole punched in the blanks? They are dangling from those now...

The stamped-out steel blanks are still pliable at this stage so must be hardened. Enter this 1500 degree molten salt bath. They are then quenched in a 400 degree bath and dipped into other solutions... Quench tank FTW! As the hardening, shaping, buffing and sharpening are all done in-house, R. Murphy can turn out upwards of 1,000 units a week - all on premises.

R. Murphy make a point of working with carbon steel for the home chef; it takes an edge better and holds it longer. Julia Child swore by them - I love em too.

The scales (wooden handles) are secured with brass and then sanded to shape - rather than bolting pre-made handles onto the knife and risking a non-smooth ridge. That sander takes the block down in a second - amazing.

I can't remember the punchline but when a guy who sharpens knives for a living tells a joke, you laugh...

That is a 400 grit wheel for those that are interested. Sharpening is done by hand.

Whether the 1980s incarnation of R. Murphy ran a tight ship or not [that owner had a side interest in racing cars - crashed into and beat Paul Newman famously], that letterhead is boss.

Great labels. #staysharp  The labels infact printed in Shirley, MA next door. Fan-flippin-tastic. #murphygreen #local

Wall of discontinued styles in the office. The more you dig the more you find. Jump over to their site now for 5% off and free shipping - get yourself a clam and oyster knife and stop by your fishmonger on the way home. #themusicisbetterandthedrinksarefree

Again - must say a huge thank you to Mimi and Mark for taking time out of their day for us, and the staff for taking care of us as well. - James.  Photos by Aaron Panone.