Local Showcase, from the Hands of Alaska

Real Art by Real Alaskans

Dancing Man Knives & Ulus

    Here is a PDF version of the complete catalog of the regular Dancing Man Knives & Ulus designs.  A paper catalog can be mailed, if you prefer.  The catalog consists of to-scale line drawings (when printed/viewed at 8.5x11"); some sample photos appear at the bottom of this page.

     Not all of these items are always in stock.  Also, Local Showcase typically carries a nice variety of "one-of-a-kind" knives that may not appear in the catalog; typically, this is a range of larger kitchen knives, Musk Ox horn or Walrus Ivory handles, knives with saw teeth on the top, Sheep Shear knives, and other unique pieces.  Call for selection.

    Or, visit our eBay store.  Although the selection is small, you can view photos of specific knives or ulus for sale, as well as order sheaths and artist bio DVDs:

                    

 About the Artist, Maynard Linder:

  Maynard Linder began crafting authentic, hand-made ulus in 1990, and by 1997 he left a successful Journeyman Carpentry career to make knives and ulus full-time.  Today, he supplies knives to gift shops around the state, and to individuals around the world.  He is excited by the prospects of a “home gallery,” where he can present unique designs for discerning customers.

Maynard Linder began crafting authentic, hand-made ulus in 1990, and by 1997 he left a successful Journeyman Carpentry career to make knives and ulus full-time.Today, he supplies knives to gift shops around the state, and to individuals around the world.He is excited by the prospects of a “home gallery,” where he can present unique designs for discerning customers.

 

  Maynard spends his time making knives and ulus, so he can sojourn to the Seward Peninsula, and collect shed antler for his knife handles.  When he has the chance, he works on carvings, such as Native-inspired masks, or ivory jewelry.

About The Ulus :

History

  The ulu was developed thousands of years ago in the Arctic regions of Siberia, Alaska, Canada and Greenland by Eskimo women for processing the animals and fish brought home from the hunt by their men.

  Our ulus, considered by many Eskimo women to be the best made, are used to cut up and skin any type of fish, from herring to halibut.  In the kitchen, an ulu can be used to slice, dice, or chop any vegetable, spice or nut.  We also make small sewing ulus for tarditional skin sewing tasks.

Crafting

  Dancing Man ulus are handmade in Homer, Alaska, to the exacting specifications of dozens of Eskimo ladies who, over the years, have advised us on the proper design and construction of true traditional ulus.

  All of our ulus are made from carpenters' hand saw steel with a high carbon content.  This type of steel is preferred for its lightness, flexibility and ability to take and maintain a razor sharp edge.

  Over half of our ulus are made from antique, turn-of-the-century hand saws.  These antique saws have the higher quality steel desired by traditional Eskimos. 

  Our handles are made of wood, moose deer or caribou antler, ivory, oosik, extinct Steller's Sea Cow bone (Mermaid BoneTM) or musk ox horn.  The handles are bedded in epoxy and riveted completely through themselves and the blade with brass rivets for a lifetime of service and stability.

Sharpening Styles

  Our Inupiaq style ulus such as the Barrow or Fish River are available sharpened on only one side, in the Northern Eskimo tradition.  We find this style of sharpening to be exceptional for filleting or stripping fish, processing meat, skinning animals, or fleshing and splitting walrus hides.

  Learning to use an Inupiaq ulu takes a little practice but is well worth the effort.  Our Yup'ik style ulus such as the Bristol Bay, Nunivak, or Savoonga are sharpened on both sides lake a regular European knife.

Blade Care

  Your ulu can be sharpened with a diamond steel, or a medium fine Arkansas stone.  Old Eskimos use flat beach rocks.  Clean and dry your blade after every use or it may rust.  A light coating of olive or vegetable oil will ward off rust.  Incidental rust can be removed with steel wool.

  If you use your ulu enough to become comfortable with it, it will become one of your most useful kitchen utensils.

About The Knives :

   Our Dancing Man Eskimo knives carry on a tradition stretching thousands of years into antiquity.

  Our blades resemble the ancient slate-side and end-hanted styles preferred by the ancient people of Alaska.

  In addition to the traditional Eskimo style knives, we also have a full line of paring, skinning, and fillet knives.

  The handles are made of caribou, moose or deer antler.  Other handle materials are fossil walrus bone, extinct Steller's Sea Cow bone (Mermaid BoneTM), wood, and sometimes Musk Ox horn.  The blades are made of antique handsaw blades, two-man crosscut saws, or bandsaw blades.  We prefer this type of steel for its flexibility and its ability to take an edge fast and hold it well.  All of our steel and handles are 100% recycled.

Care:

  Since our steel is high carbon, it will rust and must be taken care of.  Dry the blade immediately after use.  Rust can be removed with steel wool.  A light coating of almost any food-safe oil will prevent rusting.

 

Sample Photos 

Some stock photos, all antler handles unless noted otherwise.

From Top:

8"/Russian Knife

6"/Large Eskimo Knife

Curved Fillet Knife

Small Eskimo Knife

Steak (Small Fillet) Knife

Paring Knife

From Top:

French Knife

Small French Knife

Small Skinning Knife

Small Japanese Knife

 

Shop Ulus (notice variety of shape)

 

 

Back Row, left to right:
Small Savoonga Ulu
Medium Bristol Bay Ulu
Middle Row, left to right:
Nunivak Ulu (in walrus vertebra stand)
Sea Cow bone sewing ulu
6" Fish River Ulu
Front:
Shop Ulu

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