How It’s Made

Custom and Handmade Oyster knives
Etching damascus steel gives the patterned effect of this shucker.
Read more about Damasteel

The handmade and custom oyster knives that I make are made of the beautiful Damasteel or the RWL34 steel. Both materials are made with superior powder metallurgy technology. This makes the blade extremely rust-resistant and resilient against cracking. An the excellent choice of steel for my knives. Read more of the forged and folded Damasteel’s amazing patterns on their website.

When making an oyster opening tool, I proceeded next to ground the bevels and glue the hardwood handles. The thoroughly selected wood used in the knives’ handles certainly adds character and richness to the handmade shucker.

video says more

Filming my process

Since 2014 I’ve been filming my knife making process. Every prototype of a new oyster shucker has been filmed and tested. I invite you to watch some of these youtube film to get familiar with my creative process.

CNC Milling knives

Ever since I’ve graduated as an engineer, I wanted to bring CNC into my knife making process. It takes a lot of thought and programming to run a computer controlled milling machine. The advantage is that once the computer knows what to do, the making becomes partially automated. That’s why I’ve changed the naming from handmade to custom oyster knives.

The reason why I wanted to start CNC milling these oyster opening tools is the extra creative freedom that it’s offering. I’m filming a video series where I’m developing a full titanium oyster knife. Titanium is more flexible and it’s impossible to rust. But you could never successfully work the metal by hand. The same with my exquisite wooden boxes there the shuckers ship in. If it weren’t for CNC I’d be shipping them in cardboard boxes.

The full titanium oyster knife, the ”Hugo” type, will become available in 2021.

New for Emergo Designs
The Syil X7-20 CNC milling machine is used to make this Aluminium prototype of the ''Hugo'' Oyster opening tool.
Watch the development of my titanium oyster knife

Prettiest oyster knife in the world?

Piece by Piece

These oyster opening tools are made in very small batches. Usually per 3 shuckers at a time and this allows me to do a lot of process improvements. Over the years I’ve been able to add an amazing packaging, add the individual knife number to each blade and many more improvements. And because I finish every knife by hand I can keep a very close look at the quality.

The complete package

Packaging matters

This case explains why this oyster shucker is the perfect gift for an oyster lover.

Oyster opening tools are special in the knife world. A chef’s knife lives in the kitchen knife block. A folding knife can be found in someone’s pocket. But where do you keep your pretty Emergo Designs oyster knife? Not in the kitchen knife block and (hopefully) not in a drawer. To solve this dilemma all the knives have their own unique wooden box. The wood is harvested locally and all is sawed, planed, milled, sanded and oiled in house.

In 2019 Emergo Designs bought a CNC router: A computer controlled milling machine capable of cutting wood. It allowed us to design, make and use our own packaging. It was a 100% improvement and it really gives our oyster knives something extra. For yourself or as a gift for an oyster lover.

Now we also have a Laser engraving machine capable of engraving a logo, name or date into this box to make it even more special. If you’re interested in this, please let me know.

Watch the making of this case
Honest about how i make

This is of the best video I have to show both the oysters, the knife and the packing. This knife variant was developed for a international fish company called Zeeland’s Roem. It was a limited edition of 20 pieces and all the knives will be used as gifts and other marketing purposes.

With my shuckers it feels like every oyster has a pearl inside.