Welcome to Windy City Knives!
Windy City Knives was born out of a life long passion for knives. As a young boy, I remember always having a pocketknife with me. In fact, my Dad, who served in the U.S. Army during WW II, and then devoted 20 years of his life to the New York City Police Department, gave me my first knife when I was about 10 years old. Sadly, both Dad and the knife are no longer around. However, I attribute my love affair with knives to him. From my old Boy Scout knife, to the old Barlow that lived in my tackle box, to the rusty fixed blade knife we used to play mumblety peg, to the Case XX 223-5 fixed blade knife that I took camping, a knife has always been part of me. Today, I can't leave the house without at least one knife in my pocket. Without it I feel naked.
As an adult, my passion for knives turned into an obsession and a collection. And as I got older my collection increased in size and diversity, and my commitment to knife collecting and the knife community grew stronger. It doesn't matter if it's a forged fixed blade or one made from stock removal, or a handmade or custom folding knife, I had to have them all. After all, you can never have too many knives. To understand the time and effort that goes into designing a knife, hammering or cutting steel, crafting handles, and building the blade, is to appreciate the finished piece. I have had the privilege of personally knowing several knifemakers at the top of their game - many of them you will find on the Links page - and that has only "forged" my passion for the hobby. It's not often that the "Rock Stars" of an industry are so approachable and helpful. I have learned a great deal from these talented friends. And I must also thank my dear friend, Barry, a knife collector for much longer than I have been, for his knowledge and support.
I have not only been collecting knives for more than 2 decades, but I have also been successfully buying and selling knives part-time for the past 15 years. Tastes change and collections mature, so oftentimes it makes sense to "thin the herd" to make room for new additions. There were times when I had fondled and admired a knife long enough, and it was time to give someone else the opportunity to enjoy it. Sometimes I made money, and sometimes I lost money. When it comes to collecting, the important thing is to buy what you like, not what everyone else likes or says you should like. I have a great network of knife collectors, and I have been buying and selling from them, and for them, as well. Should you choose to send us a knife on consignment, it will get the attention it deserves and a great deal of exposure. Should you decide to buy or sell us a knife, we promise you a positive experience.
In early 2012, at the height of the economic downturn in this country, I lost my job. Since then, I have not able to find work in my field. So much for that MBA. Although I don't feel so old, I have been told that I am. With the support and encouragement of my adoring wife, Patti, I have decided to turn my life long passion for collecting knives and part-time hobby of buying and selling knives into a full-time job. I don't intend to get rich, but I do plan on enriching my life by building my network, and providing the best service possible to my customers. I am also a member of the American Bladesmith Society (ABS). I would welcome the opportunity to serve you. If you want references, just contact me.
When I am in the store, I am either working on knife listings or on the phone. When I am out, you will find me at a knife show or riding my Harley-Davidson (at least during the riding season here in Chicago). In some cases, I will combine both and ride to a knife show. In fact, for the past nearly 15 years a group of us have done exactly that, and ridden to Atlanta for the Blade Show. We will be there every year - rain or shine! And since September 2015, when the first annual ICCE (joint American Bladesmith Society and Knifemakers Guild) Show was held, we now ride to Kansas City every year.
We work hard at bringing you the best products we possibly can. We want to earn your business and your trust. We are careful to accurately describe the features and condition of each knife we offer. Accuracy will result in a mutually beneficial transaction. Please note that the component materials of previously owned and consignment knives, are in most cases what we have been told by the owner. Also, please keep in mind that we are dealing with handmade knives, and by definition handmade is just that "hand made". There are going to be slight variations in measurements, color, markings, etc., all of which add to the uniqueness of a custom knife. Describing the degree of an "imperfection" is subject to individual interpretation. We will disclose what we see, and photograph what we can. Our intention is for you to be able to make an informed purchase.
If you have any suggestions to help up improve our site or service, just let us know. And in case you are wondering, every folding knife purchased on the site will always come shipped in some sort of pouch, case or sock. And every fixed blade that does not include a sheath will also come shipped in a case.
Please don't hesitate to contact me for any reason. I love to talk knives. We welcome the opportunity to work with you.