The bolsters of a laguiole are the metal ends of the knife handle. Our bolsters are forged steel. They are welded to the side plates. The front bolster supports the pivot axis of the blade. The back bolster protects the handle against shocks.
Carbon steel is a traditional steel that oxidizes naturally and becomes grey over time. Its high carbon content gives it more hardness and better cutting. The carbon blades sharpen easily and are quite resistant. We use XC75 carbon steel.
The Damascus steel is an ancient and mythical technique. The damascus steel alternates layers of steels with a different carbon content: hard steel and soft steel. Welded, hammered, folded and stretched repatedly while being hot, the layers of steel reveal patterns and designs that give the Damascus its unique appearance. This heterogeneous structure induces exceptional mechanical qualities. The damascus is available in stainless or carbon steel version.
Stainless steel is an alloy of iron, chromium and carbon. The stainless steel is resistant to corrosion. It is by far the most widespread steel in cutlery. It combines hardness and resistance to repeated use. The Laguiole and the Navette are made of 12C27 stainless steel. The Vicomte is made of 14C28 stainless steel.
The knife handle can be decorated with small nails. The Shepherd’s Cross is the traditional decoration of the laguiole. The nailing, or dotting, can take various forms such as a circle or a diamond.
See Chisel and File Engraving
Chisel engraving is a sculpture technique where the spring and/or the bee are hand chiselled. The chisel is a sharp cutting tool which is pushed by hand to engrave metals. This technique allows very precise patterns and designs with great sharpness.
The hand chiselled with file is the most common technique for engraving both the spring and the bee. The files wich are used to engrave the spring allow to create various patterns to decorate the upper metal parts of the knife. The side plates can also be hand chiselled.
Edgings are colored inserts which are slided by the Cutler between the handle and the side plates. Available in red, black or white, the edgings bring a touch of color which highlight the handle material. They also act as a joint between the mechanical parts and the handle while protecting the material.
Our knives are available in mat or mirror finish. The mirror finish is an additional polishing of the metal parts. The polished finish is not available for clear woods, as the additional polishing results in tarnishing these material.
The front part of the Laguiole’s spring bears a flat portion called fly. This part was originally a flat and raw piece. Cutlers then started to decorate if with a bee. Other patterns can be sculpted. Our flies are forged: the spring and its fly are one sinble forged piece. Our flies are hand-chiselled.
The rivets are used to assemble and bind together the handle, the side plates, the spring and the blade.
The side plates are stainless steel plates. They are the backbone of the knife and act as a support to the handle. They ensure the rigidity and strength of handle fixing. The bolsters, if any, are fixed on the side plates.
The spring is the central part of the handle that allows the opening and closing mechanism of the blade. Our springs are forged, engraved and tempered in order to acquire their hardness and flexibility. The spring is adjusted by the knife maker so that the blade is protected and avoids being in contact with the spring in closed position.