Randall Knives | Randall Made Custom Bowie Knives
Randall Made Knives are some of the most sought-after collectibles among true knife buffs. The company is renowned for producing some of the highest-quality hand-made knives in the world.
History of Randall Made Knives
W.D. “Bo” Randall started making knives in 1937 as a hobby. He quickly learned to hand-make high-quality forged knives for various outdoor uses. He began selling them informally in the years leading up to World War II.
During the early stages of the war, a reporter got wind of these knives and wrote a story about Bo. This led to overwhelming demand and forced Bo into the knife-making business full time. This turned out to be a great thing for knife buffs!
Randall continued to hand-craft each and every knife despite the demand and temptation to mass-produce his products. He received more good publicity throughout WWII as several war heroes, including Ronald Reagan, carried his knives.
After the war, Bo was contacted by NASA to develop a survival knife for its fledgling space program. The result was one of Randall’s most famous knives — the Model #17 “Astro”.
Bo Randall passed away in 1989, but left his company in the capable hands of son Gary. Today, Randall enjoys a stellar reputation for producing some of the finest hand-made knives worldwide. Their knives are true collectibles, often increasing in value immediately after purchase.
Randall makes over 50 models, some of which have been in production for decades. The knives fall into several categories:
- Outdoorsman knives for hunting, fishing and general outdoor tasks. The #5 “Camp and Trail” and #11 “Trapper” fall into this category.
- Saltwater knives for diving, fishing and general utility use. The #10 “Salt Fisherman” and #16 “Diver” are the most popular knives in this category
- Survival knives such as the #17 “Astro” and #18 “Attack and Survival”
- Military style knives such as the #15 “Airman” and the #14 “Attack
- Bowie knives such as the #12 “Bear Bowie” and #13 “Arkansas Toothpick”
For detailed information on each specific knives, see our individual pages devoted to each knife.
Randall has been refining its knife making process throughout its history. It currently uses a time-intensive, seventeen step process that involves forging a high-carbon steel blade, hand-shaping the blade to exact specifications and multiple polishings. For full details on the process, see Randall’s website.
Where to Buy Randall Knives
You’ve got a few options when looking to buy a Randall Knife. If you don’t mind getting on a five-year waiting list, you can go to the Randall Knives website. Or you can search around and find an authorized Randall dealer. Unfortunately, Randall dealers have a limited allotment of knives that they can get from Randall, so it’s pretty much hit or miss. If you want a knife soon, or are looking for a specific model, the only way to go is eBay. You’ll find plenty of Randall Knives available on eBay — some new, some used. You might have to hunt around just a bit to find the perfect knife, but you can usually find what you’re looking for. Be sure to check the seller’s feedback rating before buying — you’ll want to buy from someone who has a 98% rating or better.
Learn More about Randall Knives
Randall knives are so popular, there are several books written about them. You can find a brief review of this Randall Knife reference book on our website. This book focuses on Randall military knives, while this book does an excellent job describing the history of Randall.
For a quick and dirty overview of Randall Knives, check out the Wikipedia’s entry on Randall Knives. It’s brief, but does provide some links to more definitive sites.
Model #14 Attack and #15 Airman | Collectible USMC Militaria | Survival Knife
The Model #14 Attack and the #15 Airman are so similar, they almost don't deserve their own model numbers. The only real difference is the blade length.
The 15, with its 5.5" blade, was designed especially for airman survival and was developed in co-operation with the USMC equipment board. And ...
Models 1-5 1-6 1-7 1-8 | All Purpose Fighting Knife
This is the one that started it all. In World Ward II, the popularity of Randall Made Knives too off, due to the popularity of this model among American GIs.
Randall describes this is a Fighting Knife, but it's more of an all-purpose knife than that. It features a high-carbon stainless steel ...
Models 5-4, 5-5, 5-6, 5-7, 5-8 | Camp & Trail Survival Knife
I won't go into much detail on the Randall Made Knife company here. You can find that in our review of the Model 17, the Model 18 or in this comprehensive book.
Instead, I'll focus on the Randall Model 5. This is a all-purpose outdoor knife, intended for camping, ...
Saltwater Diving | Salt Fisherman, Household Utility | 10-3 10-5 10-7
Randall Made Knives you probably already know. Makers of quality knives for seventy years, their models have become highly sought-after collectibles due to their heritage and quality. Want to know more about Randall Made? Check out the Model #17, Model #18, and this comprehensive book about nothing but ...
Stainless Steel “Attack and Survival” Fixed-Blade Knife
Now seventy years in production, Randall Made Knives have always had a reputation for quality. During WWII, they gained quite a bit of notoriety as several well-known soldiers carried and endorsed them. Ronald Reagan, for example, owned a Randall during WWII.
These knives were also used by NASA as it built its ...
Randall Made Knife
Hot off the presses in 2007, this is an entire, 252-page book written on Randall Made Knives.
Sheldon and Edna Wickersham, owners of Blue Star Knives, have done exhaustive research to produce this comprehensive reference guide for Randall collectors.
It includes a guide for estimating the age of any given knife as well ...
Model #17 “Astro” Fixed-Blade Survival Knife
Randall Made Knives has been producing high-quality knives for nearly seventy years. Founded by W.D. "Bo" Randall, these knives are known for their hand-made quality workmanship.
Despite the tremendous popularity of the knives among military personnel and knife collectors, the company has always resisted the temptation to mass-produce their products. The result are ...
Randall Made on eBay: