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The history of the Tirpitz-Damascus: From wreck to collector‘s item

For more than 10 years, this model has shaped the Boker range like no other. The battleship of the German Navy, which sank off the Norwegian coast in 1944, served not only as eponym but also as parts supplier for the legendary Boker model Tirpitz-Damascus. Norwegian divers salvaged parts of the special armour of the Tirpitz from the fjord. From these pieces of living history, the Boker Damascus smith exclusively forges an extraordinary 300-layer Damascus with fascinating history in the pattern „Great Pyramid“. The unbelievably varied and elaborate work steps for the production of the Tirpitz-Damascus are exemplary for many products, which are still manufactured by hand today with great attention to detail, the unconditional will to perfection in craftsmanship and the passion of our employees. The high vertical range of manufacture in our manufactory is as unparalleled then as it is today.


Even though Norwegian divers were responsible for salvaging the steel, a long-time Boker employee did not miss the opportunity to personally visit this historic site and to accompany the development of this exceptional model from the very beginning.

Damascus forging

In the forge of the Boker Damascus blacksmith, the exclusive combination of Tirpitz steel pieces with carbon tool steels takes place. The different alloys are forged by hand to form an extraordinary and extremely durable Damascus steel with 300 layers, which with a Rockwell hardness of 61 to 63 HRC can cope with any task in everyday use.

Laser beam cutting

The exact blade contour of the Tirpitz-Damascus and also the contour of the barrier spring are realized today by laser beam cutting. The classic nail cutting with the two-hand version Tirpitz-Damascus 42, on the other hand, is traditionally embossed with the help of the company‘s own punching tools and machines.


In the grinding shop, the bevel, i.e. the long phase from the back to the cutting edge, is applied. For this, the blade blanks are placed individually by hand on the blade-specific device. Particular care must be taken when cooling the workpieces, as the blades could warp as a result of the heat input.


After grinding, the blades are brought to the final hardness of 61 to 63 HRC in the hardening shop. At a hardening temperature of approx. 870 °C, the Damascus blades are held for several minutes before they are quenched in an oil bath. To ensure that the very brittle blades do not break in everyday use, they are set to the target hardness of 61 to 63 HRC at approx. 150 °C during tempering.


At the same time, the blocking spring is further processed in this workshop. Each part is individually cleaned, deburred and given a uniform finish while sitting on the bench. This is the only way to ensure that the springs function perfectly. Each individual blade also passes through the hand padding process. For an even surface without stains, the blades are first carefully cleaned and polished by hand. The beautiful and exclusive Damascus pattern is only then made visible by a special etching technique, in which the Damascus blades are individually dipped in an acid bath. Since the steel alloys used react differently to the precisely coordinated acid treatment, the Damascus pattern is now visible. Each blade of the Tirpitz-Damascus is also provided with a model-specific lettering. In order to place this on the Damascus blade, the letters are applied with an acid-resistant print before deep etching. After etching, the print is carefully removed so that the desired lettering breaks the fine Damascus pattern cleanly.

Handle department

In the shell department, the next step is to manufacture the wooden inserts from domestic walnut wood. Squares are cut from solid logs, from which the contours of the filigree wooden inlays are milled. The edges of the wood inlay and the surface are then finely sanded by hand to produce an even finish. In the last step, the fine laser engraving is applied. The handle is CNC machined from the high strength aluminum AlMgSi1 (due to the silicon content, it is of a much higher quality than the usual AlMg3), then sandblasted and hard coat anodized. The handle lies securely and firmly in the hand and is better protected against environmental influences and damage thanks to the resistant coating.

Reiderei / Assembly

The two handles with the corresponding walnut inlay, the blade and all other components are assembled in the reider‘s workshop and then screwed together. The world-famous tree symbol decorates the cover of the alternative clip position. Since its foundation, no knife has left our factory without this seal of quality.


The knife now has the same shape and contour as the final product, but the blade has not yet been sharpened. The blade is unfolded and pulled off by hand at an angle of 30 degrees.

Final inspection

Every single knife is carefully cleaned and checked for perfect function during the final inspection on the traditional wooden sorting boards. Even the smallest defects are reworked so that only flawless products find their way into the high-quality frame boxes. The long journey of the Tirpitz-Damascus through our factory comes to an end with the way to the main warehouse. From there a new journey begins with the purchase of the knife as a reliable companion of its proud owner.

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