Lon Humphrey Brings Back the Minuteman in 52100

Bladesmith Lon Humphrey just shipped out a third batch of his Minuteman fixed blade this week, the knife’s first appearance since its debut a few years ago. This round sees the outdoors knife rendered in Humphrey’s favorite steel, 52100.

Humphrey talked to us back in February about the Nessmuk Blacktail, which combined that famous George Sears blade with one of his own signature handle designs. The Minuteman is a fair bit bigger than that knife, with a blade length of 4.5 inches. The blade shape is much different too, a lean and mean clip; but it does slot into the same all-purpose outdoors role as its predecessor. “It could be an outdoors knife, a hunting knife – even an EDC if you’re so inclined to carry something that big,” Humphrey tells us. 52100 carbon steel dovetails perfectly with those roles, with its high durability and edge-holding capability – and this is the first time the Minuteman has been available with the stuff; the first two runs of the knife were made from 3V instead.

For Humphrey, who hand forges his knives and is attuned to the artistic side of his craft, the creation of outdoors knife patterns comes naturally. “At least for me, it’s not hard to create outdoors knives,” he says. I don’t know. I just play with the drawings until it feels right.” But a lifetime spent outdoors probably has something to do with it. “I pretty much grew up in the woods, and spent years in Boy Scouts,” recalls Humphrey. “But we weren’t allowed to carry a fixed blade, it had to be a folder.”

However, once he was able to carry fixed blades, Humphrey gravitated toward Buck knives – in particular, their most famous outdoors fixed blade, the 119. “My go-to was a Buck, and that’s what I took inspiration from for the Minuteman,” he says. “If you look at it, you can kind of sort of see elements of the 119 there.”

The Minuteman batch is available now over at KniveShipFree. The entire run consists of wood-handle options, including the Storm Maple variant, made from a tree knocked down in a storm on Humphrey’s own 60-acre property. When we asked about the future, Humphrey alluded to a new project. “We’ve got another one coming up, I’m still finalizing the design. It will be brand new, it will be in 52100 – and, it will be cool.”

Knife in Featured Image: Lon Humphrey Minuteman

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