How To Safely Display Your Custom Knives

How To Safely Display Your Custom Knives

Nov 19th 2019

Custom knives are usually made from expensive or rare materials, so you'll want to keep this in mind when it comes to safely storing them. With proper care and maintenance, your knives can last a lifetime if stored properly. Use these tips to safely display your custom knives:

How To Safely Display Your Custom Knives

Take Inventory

Before you can even think about where to display your custom knives, you need to know how many you have and how you hope to grow your collection in the future. You can organize your knives by brand, blade type, size, year, etc. Taking inventory of your collection is helpful for easier cleaning and maintenance, and makes for a more appealing display. 

Have A Display Case

Many custom knives are not used often - or even at all. Their primary function is to look great! To properly show off your custom knife collection, you'll want to choose a display case that fits your space and will keep your knives safe. If you have a custom fixed blade knife or plan to display your knives with the blades open, make sure that the place where they rest won’t damage or corrode the blade. Acid-free environments are best; however, gun storage cupboards are also effective for protecting your collection. 

Avoid Sunlight  

You may be tempted to display your collection in the space with the most natural light; however, sunlight can damage some elements in custom knives. UV light oxidizes wood and bleaches gemstones, and the heat from the sun can also weaken adhesives and bonding agents. Keep your custom knives in a display case out of direct sunlight and use other forms of lighting to enhance your display and keep your knives in tip-top condition. 

Avoid Moisture

When it comes to custom knife blades, moisture means rust. When displaying your custom knives, it is essential to minimize the exposure to moisture. Unfortunately, most moisture exposure occurs due to high humidity, which can be problematic unless you have climate-controlled storage. A budget-friendly option to minimize the moisture in your display case and protect your knives from corrosion is to place desiccant in the bottom of the display case.

Avoid Oils

Oiling the blades of your knives is an age-old practice and can protect the blade from moisture and rust. However, oil can soak into the padding of sheaths and display cases and, in some cases, may damage other decorative components on your knife. More custom knife collectors are using wax rather than oil, as it won’t leave any greasy residue while still being moisture repellant. When using wax, buff a small amount of it into the blade with an auto cloth or chamois instead of fleece or cotton, which can leave behind fibers. Wooden handles can also benefit from occasional polishing with wax or furniture polish to avoid brittleness.

Clean Your Knives

Cleaning your knives is especially crucial if you use your custom knife regularly. However, it also prevents dust and debris from building up on custom knives on display, which can corrode fragile blades over time. Cleaning your knives is best done by attending to the entire collection. This means that you won’t overlook any individual knives and allows you to create a cleaning schedule. To clean your knives, use a mild detergent and hand wash the blade with a non-abrasive sponge, and then rinse it under clean water and dry thoroughly to prevent rust. To clean the knife handle, you may need to use a Q-tip to get into the crevices of grips and grooves.

You can safely display your custom knives, and prolong their life with proper cleaning and storage. If you have any questions about how to care for your knives, or would like to add to your collection, call us at (423) 525-9477. We're always happy to help!