Vintage Kienel & Piel XXL Fahrtenmesser


This is one of several projects i'm currently working on, a vintage XXL Fahrtenmesser/Scout knife manufactured by Kienel & Piel in Solingen, Germany.
In Germany knives this size were often used by hunters for clearing shooting stands etc, but basically by anyone in need of a good quality heavy chopper with a classic design.

Once used in the jungles of Suriname by Dutch soldiers of Third Suriname Company in the early 1960's, this knife was recently found sheathed in an attic during a house clearing after the owner had passed away.
It's blade was corroded black, somewhere in time it had been "sharpened" on a bench grinder, and all handle parts were loosened and dried out.
But as the blade was still structurally sound and i have a soft spot for vintage German knives it became another project.

I chose to regrind the originally saber ground blade to convex by hand using a Chinese 300 grit diamond file, which removed most of the corrosion & edge damage, while at the same time giving the knife a much more effective blade geometry for chopping.
Also did a few refining steps using waterproof SiC paper on a semi-hard rubber backing with WD40 as a lubricant, but just enough so i can do a bit of test chopping when time permits.
The new edge measures somewhere between 25 and 30 degrees inclusive, and i still have to remove the burr.
The original stag handle was way too thick & lumpy for my hand, so after glueing all parts together i gave it a bit more ergonomic & functional shape.
Especially the thinning of the handle just behind the guard while leaving a thicker midsection makes for a very comfortable hold with much less hand fatigue.

How i received the knife:

How it currently looks:


Overall length: 17.4 inches (44,2 cm)
Blade length: 12.3 inches (31,3 cm)
Blade thickness: 4,0 mm
Steel: hot drop-forged carbon steel
Weight: 476 grams