Mystery Knife

I just want to let you know that no knives were hurt at the Medina gun show this weekend.  In fact, damn few were sold by anyone.  There is something about the June show.  One would think that since there is no May show and following the June show there is nothing until September, June would be busting with buyers needing ammo, targets, supplies, blades and other sundry items.  Not so.

It was a stinky show, so men, stop eating all that cabbage, ‘cause it’s bad enough not having customers, but gassy ones are worse!



Horn handle,  A Beltrame
What appears to be a tang stamp is someone’s initial carefully carved into the metal.

I did pick up a horn handled lever lock auto.  It’s completely free of maker marks.  So I searched Google images.  I found an internet reference to SKM A Beltrame in Italy.  This led me to the website from Frank Beltrame and Maniago, Italy.
It seems Maniago, Italy has a long tradition of making automatic knives, especially in the classic Italian stiletto style.  They also make lever locks like mine.  From the little I could tell with my internet search, companies like SKM (Switchblade Knife Works) acted as jobbers making knives for everyone and could, as governed by Italian law, mark the blades with anything or nothing.  SKM is reported to be out of business.  There is no website, but they may have resurfaced with a different name.


Frank Beltrame, Italian Auto
The tab, or lever must be depressed towards the handle to open or close the knife.

lever lock, automatic knife, switchblade
With the lever up against the bolster the knife can’t be closed.  When closed this position prevents the knife from opening or unlocking.

Frank sells this knife, but he has no prices on his website and only one picture.  I’ve found other listings of this knife, but the dimensions are a little off.  Was this a bad translation from metric to English?  Or did the jobbers have a range of knives they made that looked the same, but varied in size?
In any case Maniago has what could be a very cool Museum of Knife Making: Art of Manufacturing and Cutlery.

Horned handle lever lock automatic knife, closed and locked.
I’m not sure what to do with his little guy.  It’s in very good shape with a 3-inch blade and 4.5-inch horn handle.  I suspect there is a little more research to be done on this guy.