It all began last year when Canadian knifemaker Brian Tighe saw Glenn Klecker's design for his NIRKô folder, a strikingly minimal design stamped and folded out of two pieces of stainless steel. Brian called Glenn, and raised the possibility of using the same lockback release mechanism with CNC-machined open-build construction. Brian went to work and produced his custom NIRK Tighe from exotic materials,which immediately won the Most Innovative Custom Design Award at the 2010 Blade Show.
All that was left for us to do was to convert his custom into a faithful production model. Our version of the NIRK Tighe features 420J2 stainless steel frames which are stamped, then machined and coated with blue titanium nitride. Finally, the frame exterior is satin polished, leaving the blue interior coating, a stunning effect.
Like the original NIRK, the knife is a lockback folder in which the spring, release bar and lock detent are all integral with the frame structure. Two pronounced finger notches provide a secure grip. Brian's blade is a graceful but strong drop point design with subtle recurve, and weight-saving reliefs cut into the spine for balance. The blade can be opened with one hand, by using a thumb on the reliefs, or by pressing the blade flipper. The blade is precision cut from premium AUS 8 stainless steel. At the blade pivot, a special caged mini ball bearing system gives fast and smooth opening action. The tighter the grip on the handle, the tighter the lockup, making this an exceptionally safe design. A custom removable stainless steel clothing/gear clip is provided.
Glenn's original quest was to create a folder of "irreducible complexity." Brian has added a few additional parts, true, but he's also added a vast amount of design interest in what is still a very functional folder.