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jbs

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natchez bowie - Sunday, October 02, 2011 11:41 PM ( #1 )
i've read on an amazon.com review that

"The Natchez is not full tang. It basically uses a thick wire that attaches to a bolt on the pommel."

can someone explain this to me better.
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Re:natchez bowie - Monday, October 03, 2011 5:05 AM ( #2 )
The carbon Laredo's are the same...attached is a cut-away of the Laredo handle.  Apparently the San Mai Laredo replaces the cable with a solid rod.

The cable-tang design is supposed to help reduce shock from being transmitted to the hand.

However, it seems odd to me that the 2 knives this is used on, the Laredo and Natchez, are more for fighting than chopping, so why do they use this design?  And the knife that is more for chopping, the Trail Master, doesn't have this feature...maybe they figure the Kraton on the TM does the same thing for less cost?
     
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Re:natchez bowie - Monday, October 03, 2011 6:42 AM ( #3 )
This was a big issue early in the forum and got an explanation from one of the supermods.   There is an idea out there that this is some sort of cheap shortcut.   Not at all. Think about it.  It is actually more labor intensive and expensive of material.  Done for balance and shock absorption.  On the trailmaster the kraton handle does the shock absorption. (as jlauffer says)
I am not actually sure if the Natchez has the cable tang or not.  We have photos of the Laredo stripped for a rehandle job.  but I need to get ready for work myself.
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Re:natchez bowie - Monday, October 03, 2011 7:25 AM ( #4 )
Thanks Scott.  And Jlauffer.....sorry.  this computer is so slow on photos that I didn't realize you had posted the ones I was talking about.

I am back home from work.  Walked in and got the "What are you doing here."  Kinda scary.  turned out I had not been fired, but am working 10-630 today only nobody thought to tell ME. LOL
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Re:natchez bowie - Monday, October 03, 2011 7:49 AM ( #5 )
Seems like everyone focuses on the cost of the cable-tang, thinking it is a cheaper alternative to full tang.  It makes sense that it costs more due to being much more labor intensive to make.  But more importantly....how does it perform compared to full tang?

Just because it costs more doesn't mean it's better (or even equal).  Even Tyler in his response in the other thread only talks about cost, balance, and shock-absorption...no mention of how it compares to a full tang in terms of strength, etc.

Seems like the cable-tang design relies too much on the strength of the handle itself.  The handle is in compression, while the cable is in tension.  On a knife with a wooden handle, which is "soft" compared to metal, I could see this type of design loosening up after a lot of heavy chopping.  But than again, I believe they can be retightened with the right tool.  And I wouldn't think the Laredo or Natchez would be used for that much chopping in the first place, but never know.

Has someone beat the hell out of a Laredo or Natchez that can comment on this?

I am in no way trying to bash the design...it's just the engineer in me analyzing the design and wondering about the possible faults.
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Re:natchez bowie - Monday, October 03, 2011 10:05 AM ( #6 )
jlauffer

Seems like the cable-tang design relies too much on the strength of the handle itself.  The handle is in compression, while the cable is in tension.  On a knife with a wooden handle, which is "soft" compared to metal, I could see this type of design loosening up after a lot of heavy chopping.  But than again, I believe they can be retightened with the right tool.  And I wouldn't think the Laredo or Natchez would be used for that much chopping in the first place, but never know. 
Has someone beat the hell out of a Laredo or Natchez that can comment on this?

I am in no way trying to bash the design...it's just the engineer in me analyzing the design and wondering about the possible faults.



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Re:natchez bowie - Monday, October 03, 2011 10:38 AM ( #7 )
I have wondered the same thing, about transferring stress to the wooden handle. 
I had not heard of the loosening.  I will have to keep an eye on that.
 
Does anyone know from Cold Steel if the Natchez has the cable tang ?  Or is it just Amazon saying so ? 
<message edited by dlyn454 on Monday, October 03, 2011 10:44 AM>
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Re:natchez bowie - Monday, October 03, 2011 12:22 PM ( #8 )
Freak Show Scott


IMHO comparing the strength of the Full Encapsulated Tang Trail Master's handle to the Full Cable Tang of the Larado or Natchez is like comparing the towing capacity of the Ford F100 to the Towing capacity of the Ford Mustang.  Two different designs made for two different reasons.  You can tow with both and you can race with both, it's just not really important how they stack up to each other head to head in each of those categories.


Ahh...but if you add a feature to a product that serves a specific function, then that suggests the product is designed to perform that function.  A Mustang doesn't have any towing-specific features, so of course it wouldn't make sense to compare it to a pick-up truck.  But if cable-tangs are meant to reduce shock from chopping, then it only makes sense to wonder about how such a knife would stand up to chopping.  And if it is meant to be a fighter, and not a chopper, why include a feature that only seems to raise the price? 
 
 
Also, if I'm not mistaken, the Laredo in the video is a San Mai version, which has a rigid tang...the cable is replaced by a solid bar. 
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Re:natchez bowie - Monday, October 03, 2011 2:21 PM ( #9 )
jlauffer


(...)
 the Laredo in the video is a San Mai version, which has a rigid tang...the cable is replaced by a solid bar. 
 


There is also another question I'm asking myself: if the cable on the cheaper carbon V and SK5 Laredos has advantages over a solid rod, why the same feature wasn't put on the more expensive SM version ?
I'm not bashing the design either, don't get me wrong...I love my SK5 Laredo, I'm just curious.


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Re:natchez bowie - Monday, October 03, 2011 5:28 PM ( #10 )
I had been thinking strictly of reducing the shock to the hand.  But would the cable be more inclined to stretch a tiny bit--acting like a spring and thus absorbing some of the shock on the handle ? 
The handle on the San Mai might be better able to take the shock without such cushioning ?

Why the San Mai handle would not need the balance and shock absorbtion benefits is a puzzle.  

Personally I just enjoy the end product and thanks to people like Grinder, I trust the results.   Its just something I would like to understand better.
"One loves to possess arms, though they hope never to have occasion for them."  Thomas Jefferson to George Washington. 1796 Psalms 144:1 Blessed be Jehovah my rock, Who teacheth my hands to war, And my fingers to fight:
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Re:natchez bowie - Monday, October 03, 2011 5:50 PM ( #11 )
dlyn454


Personally I just enjoy the end product and thanks to people like Grinder, I trust the results.   Its just something I would like to understand better.



This is exactly my toughts    .
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Re:natchez bowie - Monday, October 03, 2011 10:35 PM ( #12 )
this is a variation/modernization of the old riveted sword tang concept. I am pretty obsesiveabout tangs on heavy duty knives, and Bowies in particular. My concerns for the CS bowies are not with the cable, but with the tang transition. Add about 3/8" in width with a nice gentle raduis, and they would be halfa  again as strong, and take a ton more abuse. When i get the SK-5 natchez, yoy can bet she will do some chopping. I also bet i'll have no issues with it.
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Re:natchez bowie - Tuesday, October 04, 2011 4:54 AM ( #13 )
The vice tests are impressive, but the forces involved are totally different than those seen in chopping.  And they only do it once.

Again, I'm not bashing the design....but like dlyn, would like to understand better. 
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jbs

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Re:natchez bowie - Tuesday, October 04, 2011 4:22 PM ( #14 )
jlauffer


The carbon Laredo's are the same...attached is a cut-away of the Laredo handle.  Apparently the San Mai Laredo replaces the cable with a solid rod.

The cable-tang design is supposed to help reduce shock from being transmitted to the hand.

However, it seems odd to me that the 2 knives this is used on, the Laredo and Natchez, are more for fighting than chopping, so why do they use this design?  And the knife that is more for chopping, the Trail Master, doesn't have this feature...maybe they figure the Kraton on the TM does the same thing for less cost?
     



thank you sir,

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jbs

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Re:natchez bowie - Tuesday, October 04, 2011 5:03 PM ( #15 )
jlauffer

However, it seems odd to me that the 2 knives this is used on, the Laredo and Natchez, are more for fighting than chopping, so why do they use this design?  And the knife that is more for chopping, the Trail Master, doesn't have this feature...maybe they figure the Kraton on the TM does the same thing for less cost?


so why use this design?

i could be wrong and this is only a guess, but i think the premise which your argument is founded on is wrong.  even if one was more for fighting and the other more for chopping, it still should do both fairly well.

the respective handle design(for the sake of more elegance) of the natchez and laredo bowie necessitate a much thinner tang(not spine thickness but wideness measured from the spine to the blade cutting edge), relative to the entire blade of the knife, to run thru the handle.  this exact point of where discrepancy begins in wideness in theory could cause a lot of problems and therefore, a cable tang was used.

so my theory is that the shock absorption wasn't the only issue for employment of cable tang.

trailmaster accommodates a much wider tang to run thru the handle

there's a gap in my argument and that is:

jlauffer

Apparently the San Mai Laredo replaces the cable with a solid rod.


my best guess is that under stress tests, the sm3 with the solid rod was able to endure while the sk5 was not.


<message edited by jbs on Tuesday, October 04, 2011 5:06 PM>
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Re:natchez bowie - Tuesday, October 04, 2011 5:39 PM ( #16 )
I wonder how the wire tang might affect the harmonic resonance of the knife... Probably for the better? 
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Re:natchez bowie - Tuesday, October 04, 2011 5:43 PM ( #17 )
jbs


the respective handle design(for the sake of more elegance) of the natchez and laredo bowie necessitate a much thinner tang(not spine thickness but wideness measured from the spine to the blade cutting edge), relative to the entire blade of the knife, to run thru the handle.  this exact point of where discrepancy begins in wideness in theory could cause a lot of problems and therefore, a cable tang was used.



Not sure about the Natchez, but I don't think the Laredo tang is really any thinner than the Trail Master from what I remember of pics I've seen.  And even if it was, how would the cable-tang be better than a rigid tang?  As seen in the pic, the solid part of the tang goes through the thinnest part of the handle, while the cable portion goes through the thickest part...seems to run counter to your theory.
 
The good thing is that the rigid part of the tang looks to be about half the length of the handle, so that probably provides enough "meat" to keep it solid.
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jbs

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Re:natchez bowie - Tuesday, October 04, 2011 10:31 PM ( #18 )
jlauffer


jbs


the respective handle design(for the sake of more elegance) of the natchez and laredo bowie necessitate a much thinner tang(not spine thickness but wideness measured from the spine to the blade cutting edge), relative to the entire blade of the knife, to run thru the handle.  this exact point of where discrepancy begins in wideness in theory could cause a lot of problems and therefore, a cable tang was used.



Not sure about the Natchez, but I don't think the Laredo tang is really any thinner than the Trail Master from what I remember of pics I've seen. 



trailmaster tang


laredo tang


it's very clear that the Trailmaster tang is much much wider than the almost thin as the rod half tang of the laredo.

even if both were full tang and not cable, it would be easier for the laredo blade to snap off around the handle area, where guard and blade meet, under heavy stress due to its thin tang.

jlauffer

And even if it was, how would the cable-tang be better than a rigid tang? 


because cable in theory would be able to flex and absorb the shock rather than snapping off.

jlauffer

As seen in the pic, the solid part of the tang goes through the thinnest part of the handle, while the cable portion goes through the thickest part...seems to run counter to your theory.


with all due respect, this is a self fulfilling prophecy you committed which i mentioned nothing of.  please quote where i mentioned this and not out of context either.

jlauffer

The good thing is that the rigid part of the tang looks to be about half the length of the handle, so that probably provides enough "meat" to keep it solid.


no argument here nor did i ever argue otherwise.


<message edited by jbs on Tuesday, October 04, 2011 10:37 PM>
jlauffer

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Re:natchez bowie - Wednesday, October 05, 2011 5:09 AM ( #19 )
jbs


it's very clear that the Trailmaster tang is much much wider than the almost thin as the rod half tang of the laredo.

 
Attached is a better pic of the Laredo tang.  I agree it looks a little thinner when compared to the overall wideness of the blade, but if the Laredo blade is wider than the TM to begin with, they could be about the same.

jbs

because cable in theory would be able to flex and absorb the shock rather than snapping off.

 
Guess that sounds reasonable, but then again, as mentioned, the San Mai version has a rigid tang.    
 
jbs

with all due respect, this is a self fulfilling prophecy you committed which i mentioned nothing of.  please quote where i mentioned this and not out of context either.
 
I guess I misunderstood your post.  I thought you were saying that due to the varying handle thickness, the cable tang was required because of how it transitions from a thicker portion (solid portion) to a thinner portion (cable portion).  But this didn't make sense to me since the thickest portion of the tang is in the thinnest part of the handle, which would be backwards.  Sorry for the confusion.

jbs

no argument here nor did i ever argue otherwise.

 
This was just a general statement on the topic and wasn't directed at anything you said.
 
 
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Re:natchez bowie - Wednesday, October 05, 2011 4:15 PM ( #20 )

Well I've seen enough.  I definitively do -not- want a tang like that in any knife I buy.  It may well be strong enough but I just can't stand rat tailed tangs or anything like them.  Give me a full profile tang (or close to it) every time.   I now love my Trailmaster even more. To each his own.   










jlauffer


jbs


it's very clear that the Trailmaster tang is much much wider than the almost thin as the rod half tang of the laredo.

 
Attached is a better pic of the Laredo tang.  I agree it looks a little thinner when compared to the overall wideness of the blade, but if the Laredo blade is wider than the TM to begin with, they could be about the same.

jbs

because cable in theory would be able to flex and absorb the shock rather than snapping off.

 
Guess that sounds reasonable, but then again, as mentioned, the San Mai version has a rigid tang.    
 
jbs

with all due respect, this is a self fulfilling prophecy you committed which i mentioned nothing of.  please quote where i mentioned this and not out of context either.
 
I guess I misunderstood your post.  I thought you were saying that due to the varying handle thickness, the cable tang was required because of how it transitions from a thicker portion (solid portion) to a thinner portion (cable portion).  But this didn't make sense to me since the thickest portion of the tang is in the thinnest part of the handle, which would be backwards.  Sorry for the confusion.

jbs[sm=036.gif
]
no argument here nor did i ever argue otherwise.

 
This was just a general statement on the topic and wasn't directed at anything you said.
 
 


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Re:natchez bowie - Wednesday, October 05, 2011 4:47 PM ( #21 )
jlauffer
Has someone beat the hell out of a Laredo or Natchez that can comment on this?

Yo. 
 
Magius posted that video where I busted a tree in half at the end.  Thanks.  I laughed myself sick after sliding around in the mud on that grade clumsily man handling a Laredo to chop a log thick as a thigh.  My experience has been the short clip TM only out chops the SK5 Laredo by a narrow margin.  .   
 
You have to put additional power behind an SK5 to bust a board.  But for improved slashing, a finely honed clip, an acutely tapered piercing tip, additional reach, a more nimble balance, it's lighter than a TM, *etc.  The tang is a part of what enables that.   
 
The TM is a very sturdy all purpose bowie on a budget.  The Laredo is a bowie with an overall build that is more refined, and it commanded more than twice the price of a Carbon V TM until they had to move operations overseas.       
 
*etc is the smooth radius and integral guard/bolster that's machined from a single peice of metal that fits it like a glove.   


 
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Re:natchez bowie - Thursday, October 06, 2011 2:22 PM ( #22 )
Again, where that tang meets the blade should be 3/8" wider, and have a more gradual taper.Steel weighs 7.85per cubic gram(average), so this would add very little weight to the overall design- less than half an ounce, I'd bet, based on my own expirements  and experience.
As shown, that's a fairly robust tang. My arguement says that the 1/4(or so, from the photo) flats on the rear of the ricasso do not need to be that large to fit the gaurd and handle. Use that area make the tang transition more gradual, and thus stronger. That would clear up my issues with the tangs- the cable arraingment seems pretty well done to me, and has some historical precident on swords and knives that have been used hard in times past. As long as the connection between tang and cable is solid, and it appears to be, and there is no open space around the tang- and there isn't- I'd not worry too much about the Laredo, If the Natchez is made similarly, scaled up for size of course, It's good to go as well.

My tang obsession comes from breaking some production knives, some CS, and many of my own knives, on purpose. Don't think that i do not like CS, or their prodcuts. They make great go-to knives for rough use.  

The rounded transition on the gaurd is a nice touch, too.

If you are really concerned about CS tangs, you might be a lttile surprised or even disapointed to see how some custom knives are put together under the handle. I was. I have also had some other makes make sport of me due to my tang designs. No skin from my back, i'll make what i make my way.  

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