A lexicon of knife terminiology


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A lexicon of knife terminology: Section N
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Nail Mark: A small groove cut near the spine of folding blade used to pull the knife from the handle. Within the literatre, it is also called a pull or nail nick or just nick.  

Nail Nick: A small groove cut near the spine of folding blade used to pull the knife from the handle. Within the literatre, it is also called a pull or nail mark or nick.  

Navaja: The Spanish word for knife or razor. The word is normally used to describe the Navaja de Muelle, an old pattern of folding clasp knife of Spanish origin. consisting of a large swell belly locking clip point blade that folds into a long slender handle that is sharply bent at the pommel. The blade locks into place using a ratcheting device located along the spine near the tang. They were originally work knives but became popular as a knife of bandits and gypsies. The knife makes a distinct sound when opening which led to its nick-name, Carraca. Navajas fall into the toothpick and tickler family of knives. (Knives lacking the ratcheting lock should technically be called Faux or Fake Navajas.)  

Navaja knife
Navaja Cuchillo
Navaja
Note ratchet near top bolster which is used to lock the navaja blade opened and closed.

Nickel.  Nickel is added to steel to improve toughness and possible increase stain resistance.  While it improves toughness, it makes the steel softer. Nickel does not refer to nickel-silver.

Nickel-silver. A copper alloy containing nickel and sometimes zinc.  It is also known as German silver. Nickel-silver is a common metal used for knife bolsters and shield inlays as it closely resembles the shine and luster of silver.

Norwegian Steel:  A Steel with .6% carbon that originated in Scandinavia.  It is roughly equivalent to 440A.  Also known as 12C27 Stainless Steel.

Novelty: Small knives used to market an event or place that were very popular until the 1980s.  Beware of Novelty knives.  Many have been reproduced but are not sold as reproductions.  The savvy buyer will ask many questions and investigate each purchase thoroughly.


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