Gil Hibben Hand-Made Custom Knives  -  My Photos

I have been very privileged over the last few years to be able to spend a considerable amount of time hanging around Gil's home and shop. As a photographer, I almost always have a camera with me. As a result, I have had the opportunity to photograph many of Gil's custom knives that otherwise may never has been seen by many of his fans and collectors. This page is dedicated to the custom Hibben knives that I have personally seen and photographed.

Here it is folks! The Hibben collectors dream. This is Gil's handmade 50th anniversary knife celebrating his 50 years as a knifemaker. It is his "Southern Bowie" similar to the knife Gil made for his father and the first knives he sold in 1957. This style was also popular with soldiers during the Vietnam era. It is a hefty knife featuring a 9 1/2" x  5/16" blade of 440C stainless steel, brass guard and pommel, and a macassar ebony handle. The blade is etched with a special anniversary logo that I am proud to say that I designed. Only 50 of these beautiful knives will be made. Each one comes with a custom sheath, certificate of authenticity, and a special anniversary zippered pouch.

The Alien

One of Gil's most elaborate customs based on a design by Paul Ehlers. This incredible art knife has at least 17 hand-ground edges and countless hours of file work and other embellishments.

Alien under construction

This amazing folder was a gift from Gil to his wife, Linda for Christmas 2007. It features mother of pearl handles and Damascus blade and bolsters along with matching Damascus earrings.

This incredible bowie features fossil walrus ivory handle and stunning detail work.

The "Hutch Hunter". Small hunter with an interesting complex grind based on an idea by Richard "Hutch" Hutchngs

Beautiful custom damascus folder by Gil Hibben with mother of pearl and abalone inlays.

Here is a beautiful little custom folder by Gil. Scrimshaw by Gary Williams (Garbo). Engraving by Ben Shostle. Photo by Mike Carter.

These are some of Gil's knives that are on permanent display at Smoky Mountain Knifeworks in Sevierville, TN

A Soldier Returns Home.

Gil Made this knife in 1964 for a soldier n the U.S. Army Special Forces. The soldier carried this knife during his duty in Vietnam. The knife has the "Ben Hibben" stamp meaning it was made in Sandy, UT during Gil's brief partnership with Stuart Benedict. In 2006, the soldier contacted Gil and then went to meet him at the Blade Show in Atlanta. After learning that Gil had no Ben Hibben knives in his personal collection, the soldier gave the knife back to Gil as a gesture of his appreciation.

Damascus short sword with mammoth ivory handle. Scrimshaw by Gary (Garbo) Williams.

Hibben Custom Damascus Katana.


Custom made Hornet. Scrimshaw by Hutch.

Same knife under construction.

Alamo Bowie

One of Gil's Alamo Bowies is part of the permanent display in the Alamo in San Antonio, TX.

Elmer Keith Skinner - Made in 2004

Elmer Keith Folder - Prototype


This exotic custom is one of Gil's latest creations.  The covering on the top is actual hide from a stingray. Valued at $7000

World Trade Center Commemorative

Gil, along with 6 other knife makers, was asked to create a special knife made from steel from the World Trade Center. The knives will be auctioned with the proceeds going to the New York Firefighters Burn Unit. 

This is one of two knives that Gil made from the World Trade Center Steel.

Below is the 2nd knife, which is part of a 7-piece set to be auctioned off. Gil's is the 5th from the left. An offer of $25,000 has already been received for the set. Each of the selected knife makers were given a 10-pound piece of steel from Two World Trade Center (the first building to fall) to work from. The knives are housed in a custom cocobolo rosewood case designed by Tomway with the New York skyline etched in the glass. Note the piece of Trade Center steel to the left of the case.

The seven knives, from left to right, were made by: 1. Pat Crawford, 2. Bob Dozier, 3. Allen Elishewitz, 4. Jerry Fisk, 5. Gil Hibben, 6. Mel Pardue, 7. Bob Terzuola. 


The project was conceived by New York firefighter Keith Kaiser whose fellow firefighter and knife collector, Christian Regenhard, was killed when one of the towers fell on his fire truck. The reverse side of Gil's knife is scrimshawed with the Brooklyn Ladder Company 131 insignia. The front side depicts the now-famous image of firefighters raising the American flag at ground zero. The set of 7 knives is now in a museum in Albany, NY.

A few more Gil Hibben handmade Originals

This Rambo III with "wings". This is one of the original prototypes for the movie. In case you have ever wondered what the slot in the blade was for, this prototype actually had a second blade that locked into the slot. Only two of these were made. Gil has one and Sylvester Stallone has the other.

This sign showing the steps in making a Rambo III knife originally hung at Silver Dollar City. MO when Gil was the resident knifemaker. It now hangs in Smoky Mountain Knifeworks in Sevierville, TN.











Medium and Large Stag Hunters

Small Stag Hunter

Custom Folder

A customer provided a sketch of what he wanted and here is the finished knife that Gil made.

Iron Mistress

Elf Dirk

In my opinion, one of Gil's best creations. Gil created this knife for his wife, Linda, 12/03. It features coral handles, sterling silver "cobweb" and gemstones.


Shark-themed fighting knife



Kenpo Push Dagger

Alaskan Hunter from the early 70s

Custom Bowie

Collaborative creation by Gil Hibben and Tom McLennon 03/07

Custom Bowie

Damascus Folder

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