H. Roselli knives are made in Harmoinen, Finland at the workshop founded by bladesmith Heimo Roselli. A self taught smith, Heimo started forging in 1974 and since 1976 he has been making knives full time. Roselli makes a simple, unique and great looking knife using carbon steel blades, curly birch handles and leather sheaths. The knives and sheaths are without embellishments and are definitely meant to be put to work.
The blades are made from Krupp W75 steel with a carbon content of 0.7% to 0.8% hardened to HRC 59 – 62. Roselli also uses ultra high carbon steel in a series of knives that have a carbon content of 1.5% to 2.0% and are hardened to HRC of 64 – 66. A specialized worker flattens the steel with rollers and stamps it in dies to the raw blade shapes; then Roselli himself forges the bevels, does the heat treatment, sharpens and finish all the blades . The handles and sheath are all hand made within the Roselli workshop by few craftsmen. Roselli Oy also produces a line of culinary knives and a traditional style Finnish axe and hatchet.
Here are a few photos from the workshop of Heimo Roselli, please visit his web site at http://www.roselli.fi/ :
Federico Buldrini has written his observations of one of Roselli’s most popular knives, the R110, The Carpenter’s Knife:
“The Roselli nikkarinpuukko has the most classical puukko shape.The hooked pommeled handles became popular in Finland during the 30s and they can be seen extensively from the first Marttiinis to the many Kauhava made puukkos. This Roselli takes the concept and put it to its simplest version.
During the 80s and 90s the model shifted from a more pronounced pommel, a peened blade and a back sewn sheath to a more gentle curved handle, a totally hidden tang blade and side sewed sheath.
These photos are by Pachkulya Pestrenky also on rusknife.com:
Here are his observations on the current production model of The Carpenter’s Knife:
“The blade is forged from Krupp W75 carbon steel, a German equivalent to American 1080, tempered to a final hardness of 59-62 HRC. The bevels are flat, even, and ground to zero so to have a 18 degree edge. This specimen isn’t air popping sharp, but more than adequate for wood working Avoiding air popping sharpness is also reasonable since it wouldn’t last long in carving. Good biting and very easy to control. All in all the blade measures 86x21x3,2 mm, with a 60 mm tang.
The handle is crafted from curly birch, the bolster that used to be of brass is now of nickel silver. We have a good blade-bolster junction and a good finish to the wood, coated with oil.
The cross section is rectangular with rounded off corners. Even if somebody may find it less comfortable than the usual teardrop section found on puukkos it avoids the handle from turning during work and by any means fills well a mid sized hand. No hot spots have been detected. It’s 113 mm long, widens from 23 to 30 mm and thickens from 13 to 23 mm.
The sheath is a simplified version of a back stitched one. Two sheets of 2 mm leather, one making the back and the belt loop, and one making the front, stitched for few cm. on the back so to permit also an hypothetical horizontal carry, that I anyway see out of its place.
Inside there is a plastic liner, just folded on itself. The slotted belt loop is the easiest to make and holds small belts. Thanks to its smallness it isn’t particularly annoying while sitting.
A very handy puukko, born for woodcarving and ruling it. A good step forward from mass produced knives and ideal if searching for a higher quality and strong charactered puukko without spending the funds for a fully custom made one.
Special thanks to Mihail Pinhasov of Lamnia.fi for providing the knife and the help in gathering information from H. Roselli.”
Please visit Mihail Pinhasov’s site at http://www.lamnia.fi/index.php?lang=en an excellent source for all kinds of knives and other gear.
The Carpenter’s Knife:
Other items from the workshop of Heimo Roselli:
Thank you to Mihail Pinhasov and Heimo Roselli for information for this article and a special thank you to Federico Buldrini for his hard work and dedication.