Raising Money to Build a Shop & the SIK Show

You might well be wondering, “What’s been going on with Maumasi Fire Arts lately? I haven’t seen a post in ages!” The answer to that question: A LOT. Here are the top 3 things happening RIGHT NOW:

1) We just launched our Indiegogo campaign  to raise money to build our own shop in Olympia. Our campaign has lots of awesome perks – you could even win a Maumasi knife! Please check it out, donate if you can and spread the word. Every new person that sees our campaign helps! Campaign Link: http://igg.me/p/725087/x/7111215

2) We launched a new website: http://www.MaumasiFireArts.com, got a Twitter account, and an Instagram account. We are going Social Media Crazy!

3) Prepping for the 1st Annual Seattle International Knife Show. I will have a variety of knives for sale, and there are going to be some amazing makers there. We are also having a Pre-funk at the Forge that is open to the public. Come check it out! Seattle International Knife Show Website: http://www.seattleknifeshow.com/

Here are a couple previews of what will be available at the show:

Show Blade 1 Show Blade 2


Back In The Saddle Again

Hey everyone! I know it’s been a long time since my last post and I apologize for not being more diligent and more consistent with my entries. However, I have a lot of great news to catch everyone up on!

So, working in chronological order, I’ll start with finishing the first portion of filming. Any and all footage needed of me working on the knife production process has finally been captured. I owe a debt of gratitude to Tyler Seick for allowing us to make a mess in his shop while shooting the process of me making my prototype. And to Chris Sharp, continued gratitude and a very big pat on the back for his patience and great effort that he’s already put into this project so far. Here are a few still shots from our video sessions.

Shot of me whilst chatting with Mr. Seick.

Sighting down the blade as I’m working on the profile.401792_10201357649005227_1191561507_n

Me grinding away.
943243_10201357650245258_300725333_nPrevious template designs.
603489_10201357651125280_78392263_nMy prototype as the handle is being prepared to get glued up.


Secondly, as part of my effort toward building a fire-arts studio, I’ve been accumulating the materials necessary for building my own vertical belt grinder. As of right now, any and all knifemaking I’m doing right is taking place at a fellow knifemaker’s shop up in Seattle, but more on that later. A big SHOUT goes out to my friend John G. for his help in making this homemade grinder a reality.

(Example of a home-built grinder)motor-side-contact-wheel-w-table-500


Thirdly, I’ve officially become a member of the Kickstarter community and have backed my first project called the Visionnaire-Fine Writing Instrument, by BHG Design. The experience so far has been really awesome! In exchange for pledging toward their project which is to manufacture a first run line of their unique fountain pen design. Soon I’ll become the proud new owner of my very own Vissionaire fountain pen!


I really dig the design and I look forward to putting it to use as I’m a really, really big fan of snail mail correspondence and can’t wait to start pumping out some absolutely beautiful, hand written letters to my friends and family. If you’re interested in learning more about how Kickstarter works or more about the Visionnaire fountain pens, follow the link bellow,   http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/730727524/visionnaire-fine-writing-instruments-0


Now for my fourth key update. I mentioned earlier that I’ve been working up in Seattle at a fellow knife makers’ shop. This particular gentleman goes by the name of David Lisch, Master Blacksmith, ABS Journeyman Bladesmith, owner of both Dragonfly Studio and Studio 4 Forge and one of the most talented craftsmen I’ve ever met. David and I have been collaborating to create a truly beautiful piece of functional art.

To see any of the pictures full size, just click on them.jGBmIh9

The knife started as a rough forged blank of Damascus steel that David had made days prior through a rigorous and meticulously thought out process of stacking, welding, forging, drawing, grinding, cutting, re-stacking, etc. until his desired pattern had taken form. When I got to his shop, he handed it to me and said, “Do what you like.” So I began grinding and profiling the steel to match my Kingfisher cutlery design that I’ve been working on for some time now.

As you can see, the blade and bolster area all made from one piece of steel. This specific design element designates this knife as an integral bolster chef’s knife.


The handle is made out of one solid piece of Big Leaf Maple burl. The small spacer between the bolster and handle is made from cooper-nickel and micarta. Ns9cFtfThe overall length of the knife is approximately 15 inches with a cutting edge of 9 inches.


Last but most certainly not least of all the updates, I am engaged to the most incredible woman I know, and I couldn’t be more fired up about spending the rest of my life with her!



Again I apologize for slacking on the updates, but I am also thankful to all of you for your patience. I hope this entry wasn’t to much of an overload. Fortunately things really are beginning to gather momentum which means there will be a lot more news updates as well as some very useful information to read about in the coming weeks.

“You don’t have to be great to start, but you do have to start to be great.” -Zig Zagler

Keep connected by subscribing to this blog or following us on Facebook by searching Maumasi Fire Arts or clicking this link, https://www.facebook.com/MaumasiFireArts

All my best,

Mareko Maumasi



You may be asking yourself, “What exactly am I looking at?” Well, you are looking at the very first bladesmithing materials purchased for Maumasi Fire Arts!

Pictured are bars of 5160 high carbon steel, 1095 tool steel, 15N20 high carbon steel, and some copper screw rivets. My plan with the 5160 is to build some stock removal knives (stock removal literally meaning: removing material from the bar stock by drilling and grinding it away), and to use the other two to forge damascus steel for later use as a knife. The copper screw rivets that are used to hold the handle material in place while it’s being glued up. The rivets also add security and strength to the handle and knife for the duration of it’s life. Over time the copper will pick up a burnished appearance, which essentially means it’ll darken and have and antique or aged look over time and use.

I look forward to the time and work that will go into shaping and changing these individual pieces into a singular, harmonious work or craftsmanship.

Blue Crayons

A few years back as I was going through my things and packing boxes for yet another move, I came across an old progress book that was made when I was in kindergarden. It includes class activities, teacher reports, letter practice-sheets, and lots of art work. I’ve thumbed through this book on dozens of occasions over the years, but this occurrence offered a very different experience. One page in particular holds a prophetic self-portrait drawn in blue crayon. My hair sticking straight out away from my head as though one finger is knuckle deep in a light socket, no feet, a beak of a nose and a body with surprisingly accurate proportions. What struck me most was that I was holding a knife in one hand (or where one aught to have been). Initially this may be alarming for most to see in any 5yr old’s art work, and to be honest, it kind of gave me the willies, but for very different reasons than others’ I’m sure. At the time I was 2 years into my education as a Knifemaker, and looking at it makes me feel like one of those characters in the movies who’s destiny is predicted in some obscure ancient text. The difference being this is real and I’m the one drawing pictures of myself in 20 years, or as my kindergarden self would say, “Me when I grow up.” Here’s to childhood dreams!

5yr old Mareko depicting 25yr old Mareko.

5yr old Mareko depicting 25yr old Mareko.

“So, like a forgotten fire, a childhood can always flare up again within us.”                ~Gaston Bachelard

Always, your thoughts and comments are immensely appreciated.