Non-function pocket knives - 2005 Cy Sarver

A multitude of multi-blade pocket knives have been produced with most of them having at least one blade for a specific function eg: stockman, cattleman, horseman, camp, hobo pliers, tobacco, etc. Other multi-blades are not so much for function as for ego satisfaction. Exhibition and exposition knives are really not for use but to show the skill of the knife maker. Display or presentation knives are to reward the owner.

I find the most interesting of the non-function knives to be the Orange Blossom Lobsters (Right). An orange blossom is a sleeveboard or gunstock shape with the unseen springs between the scales in the middle rather than on the bottom. Two offset pins on the larger end allow for blades or tools to be opened on both top and bottom. When open the knife resembles a lobster.

Most often the orange blossom lobster will have thin mother of pearl scales with a cutout for a corkscrew and another for a punch. The underside of the scales are usually grooved on the underside of the scales between the two pins to receive inserts. The inserts might be ear wax spoons, tweezers, toothpicks, or cigar punches. The cutouts and grooves in the thin mother or pearl result in a very fragile set of scales. The liners of soft milled brass or copper are usually bent out of shape. The blade material is a soft low carbon steel having little practical use except to show the design skill of the knife maker.

Here's the mystery. If these knives were not made to be used, why then have the great majority of them been abused to the point of having broken blades, cracked scales, bent liners and missing inserts?

Fight'n Rooster 100 Blade Exhibition Display Knife.

2005 - Cy Sarver, S.W. Florida Knife Collectors Club

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