Tom Ploppert Small Stag DINO, PROTOTYPE
Tom Ploppert is a part-time maker from Cullman, AL. He credits his inspiration behind his knife making passion to Bill Ruple - a master at making slip joint folders. Tom built his first slip joint knife in April 2009. He later took a slip joint making class taught by Bill Ruple and Rusty Preston (another Ruple alum). Tom has certainly been a good student. You can see his passion in his work, and tell it from speaking with him. Tom's fit and finish, and attention to detail is obvious once you hold one of his folders. He's also a humble and personable guy.
This knife was acquired directly from Tom Ploppert at the 2018 Blade Show. Tom made this small Dino approximately 20% smaller than his full-sized Dino pattern. A relatively small reduction in size, but a resulting very pocket-friendly folder. It is stamped "PLOPPERT" on the presentation side of the tang, and "PROTOTYPE" on the opposite side. The "Dino" is a Ricardo Romano pattern. The blade, as well as the spring are CPM 154 stainless steel. The liners are "Integral" with the bolster - meaning no seams - making a knife of this construction much more challenging and time consuming to build. The liners are heat treated and tempered 416 stainless steel. The bolster, pins and crest shield are also 416 SS. The blade has a half stop, locks up tight with no play, and the blade seating is dead center. The blade pivots around an Aluminum Bronze Bushing. Nice large nail nick, with firm pull. Tom's grinds are clean and symmetrical. The tolerances that he is able to maintain are outstanding! Tom has definitely mastered the "walk-and-talk", and this knife is a great example. Comes in a padded zippered "Ploppert" case.
Condition: New from the Maker.
Overall length: 6 1/4"
Blade length: 2 5/8"
Closed length: 3 5/8"