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Thread: H Birke Meat Chopper

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    Senior Member blabbermouth engine46's Avatar
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    Default H Birke Meat Chopper

    I acquired this one awhile back on eBay for a pretty good deal. I can't find any info on it in any of my references but it is a nice meat chopper. The shank says "H Birke" on it. It is 8/8 at the widest point & at least 1/4" thick at the spine. I still need to hone it & see how good she shaves.
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    Moderator Hirlau's Avatar
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    That's a beautiful old razor,,,,,

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    Senior Member blabbermouth engine46's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hirlau View Post
    That's a beautiful old razor,,,,,
    Thank you Hirlau!

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    Captain ARAD. Voidmonster's Avatar
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    It's a Magnum Bonum style blade. Circa 1810-1815. The name on the tang is most likely Birks, rather than Birke, as there were lots of Birks running around in Sheffield and no Birkes.

    That first letter is mysterious though It really does look like an H or an M, and all the right guys in the basic timeframe were Js and Ws.

    Any chance you could get a clearer picture of the tang?

    (Based on all the ones I've handled, it'll shave wonderfully!)
    -Zak Jarvis. Writer. Artist. Bon vivant.

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    Senior Member blabbermouth engine46's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Voidmonster View Post
    It's a Magnum Bonum style blade. Circa 1810-1815. The name on the tang is most likely Birks, rather than Birke, as there were lots of Birks running around in Sheffield and no Birkes.

    That first letter is mysterious though It really does look like an H or an M, and all the right guys in the basic timeframe were Js and Ws.

    Any chance you could get a clearer picture of the tang?



    (Based on all the ones I've handled, it'll shave wonderfully!)
    Zak, you're right, after I cleaned it off with some 1k grit Wet or Dry the first letter looks more like an M especially when looking at it in person it looks like an M more than it does an H. The last letter could also be an S. It just might be the way the stamps were made back then.
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    Quote Originally Posted by engine46 View Post
    Zak, you're right, after I cleaned it off with some 1k grit Wet or Dry the first letter looks more like an M especially when looking at it in person it looks like an M more than it does an H. The last letter could also be an S. It just might be the way the stamps were made back then.
    What usually happened is just that the stamps got worn with use, so letters became less distinct over time, or in that case, it looks like it was struck a little too deeply. If you ground about 1/10mm off the surface, the letter would be clearer (I don't recommend doing that though!)

    The first letter looks really an awful lot like an M or an H and there aren't any directory listings for an M* or H* Birks.

    Now there was a famous Henry Birks, jeweler from Montreal, but the timeframe is wrong for him to have commissioned razors (he was working in the 1860's), and his father's name was Richard. So that's a dead-end. An end that wasn't really ever even alive.

    However the apprentice registers show that John Birks apprenticed one Henry Birks (son of Richard -- John's brother?). Henry was freed in 1795, which has him working in a likely time-frame.

    There were two other Henrys apprenticed. The first was freed in 1720, meaning he would have caught a nasty case of dead by the time your razor was made and the other never completed his apprenticeship (which began in 1804, to Jonathan Shackerley, a knife maker).

    In the apprentice rolls, there are no M* Birks.

    So, my best guess is Henry Birks, around 1810.
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    -Zak Jarvis. Writer. Artist. Bon vivant.

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    barba crescit caput nescit Phrank's Avatar
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    Very nice....jimps and a smile...I'd take it out for a nice dinner if it had....great find!

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    Senior Member blabbermouth engine46's Avatar
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    I'll go with that for now unless something else comes up later.

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    Great looking blade in beautiful shape!

    Void, always a pleasure reading your posts.


    In Christ
    SB

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    Senior Member blabbermouth Substance's Avatar
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    Nice fat stumpy indeed
    Saved,
    to shave another day.

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