One Man’s Trash is Another Man’s Knife: Bloodroot Blades Forges New Knives Out of Old Materials

David Van Wyk and Luke Snyder are Bloodroot Blades, a custom knife brand obsessed with transforming unexpected materials into high-performance cutting tools.

“Our materials might come from a lumber mill that opened in the early 1900s,” says Snyder in a video from Bloomberg Business’ new MADE video series. “Others, like auto springs are relatively easy to come by and can be great alloys for specific applications,” Snyder continues.

Bloodroot Blades acknowledges that working with reclaimed materials can be a challenge – they have to contend with sourcing limited supplies and plenty of unknowns. They pay a metallurgical lab to analyse materials because they can’t always know the composition of recycled steel. Once the lab results are back, they can tailor a specific forging and heat-treatment process to bring out its best performance.

On their website, BloodRoot Blades explains why they go to all the trouble: “Because of the history and people to which it connects us, the lessened environmental impact, and the knives it allows us to make, it’s worth it.”

Occasionally, they will even incorporate customer-supplied material into the knife. A wedding dress or favorite pair of jeans can become laminated micarta for the handle.

Check out the video, the first in Bloomberg’s new MADE series: