Monday, June 17, 2013



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Blog by: Ray Harwood. (contact at: 

Corina Roberts photo of Gary Pickett's knapped message


The Moundville Camaraderie Knap-in is coming up on July 19th and 20th. Y'all come! 
Michael Miller, Archaeologist, Flintknapper, and Webmaster of the Famous

Since childhood, Michael Miller has been intrigued by the study of archaeology. His grandfather introduced him to arrowhead hunting at age 6 and, not long after, he found his first point.  Always interested in rocks, minerals and fossils, Michael regularly attended the Stark County Gem & Mineral Club meetings and shows; here he fortuitously met flintknapper Carl Fry in 1992 and was taught the basics of flintknapping. As a teenager, Michael practiced flintknapping in his backyard nearly every day after he got home from school. He filled his free time by studying archaeology, attending lectures by professional archaeologists, and reading articles on lithic technology. In 1995, he was accepted to the Center for American Archeology’s Young Scholars program in Kampsville Illinois where he worked with archaeologists excavating a prehistoric habitation site. While at Kampsville, Michael was introduced to flintknapper Tim Dillard, a master of the art, who greatly influenced his knapping and interest in stone tools. His teachings immensely improved Michael’s flintknapping technique and widened his skillset.


Michael went on to study archaeology and geology at the College of Wooster in Ohio and received his B.A. in Archaeology in 2002. At Wooster, Michael focused on his studies but, always found time to improve his flintknapping and ultimately applied it in his senior thesis on the MacCorkle Bifurcate Tradition. In his experimental archaeology study, he replicated the bifurcate type, used them in an atlatl and dart system for hunting, and performed a microwear analysis of MacCorkle bifurcate replicas and artifacts from the Ohio region. Michael decided to continue his education in 2005 and attended the University of Exeter in England where he finished a M.A. in experimental archaeology, under Dr. Bruce Bradley.  This research looked at perverse fracturing among lithic bifaces; data from the Solutrean and Paleo-Indian periods buttressed conclusions on its occurrence, prevention, and possible use in a flintknappers repertoire. All of these research papers are available as a .pdf file. Michael now works as an archaeologist for the Illinois State Archaeological Survey doing lithic analysis, studying stone artifacts and recording data on tools and waste flakes.  

In 2001, Michael decided he wanted to create a website where he could display his knapped replicas and share his knowledge of flintknapping. He started and found a growing online community of flintknappers. In its humble beginnings, was just an html based website entirely written by Michael; as the website grew, Michael added galleries for his flintknapper friends to showcase their work. The countless hours spent adding photos, descriptions of points and maintaining the website over the years has paid off. is now the largest flintknapping website, showcasing the work of over 60 highly skilled flintknappers and thousands of replicas. The website maintains an events page that lists knap-in dates / information and a long list of links to flintknapping resources on the Internet. You'll also find on FaceBook, so please visit and like our page. Michael works hard to answer the numerous emails he receives about flintknapping and to help pair flintknappers with event organizers to promote public experience and education about flintknapping.  He is always interested in meeting new flintknappers, attending knap-ins, and enjoys every opportunity to "talk rock" with his fellow knappers. knap-in Calendar
Michael Miller

Friday, June 14, 2013  to  Sunday, June 16, 2013
Southern Indiana knap-in

southern Indiana flint knap-in this is 21 year for it. There many knapper from across the country attend this knap-in . There are many rock vendor with all types of knapping. Stone for sale. Like to invite you to come knap with us. There is primitive camping on site and there Is a few spot camper .vender fee is $25.00. Camping fee is $5,00 . For more info call Eric\'s rocks 8129684615

Thursday, June 20, 2013  to  Tuesday, June 25, 2013
3rd Annual Bitterroot Valley Knap-In - Montana

Joan and Richard Urata will be hosting the 3nd Annual Bitterroot Valley Knap-In at the Larry Creek Campground in the Bass Creek Recreation Area, Bitterroot Valley, Montana. We will be there to set up from noon Thursday 6/20 thru noon Tuesday 6/25 for clean-up. As with all PSK knap-ins, everything is free. This is a family event. There is a paved parking lot for RV’s (no hookups) and vehicles. There will be lots of room for tents under the trees or under the stars. Forest Service restricts RV’s to 30 ft. and vehicles need to stay in the parking lot – camp gear will need to be carried a short distance to your campsite. This is BEAR country so tenters should bring a long rope to hang your food up in the trees, or leave it in your vehicles. There will be a pot luck dinner Saturday evening with the hosts providing the main dish. This will be a Forest Service group area with trees providing about 75% shade where we will be gathering and tenting. There is a 50 X 50 yard open area for an archery/atlatl range and tents. There is a large supermarket 6 miles away and restaurants 6 to 8 miles away in Stevensville. There is a motel 15 miles away in Lolo.

The RV spaces at Larry Creek Group Campground are limited so be sure to make your reservations with Richard & Joan to guarantee a space in the group camp. A list of alternative RV Parks and Hotels is available by emailing Joan at the address below.

Charles Waters Campground – the first come first served campground - is about a mile from Larry Creek in the same complex – cost is $10/night and no hookups or $5/night with Senior National Park Pass. This campground has individual spaces and will be busy the weekend after the holiday.

If you are planning on coming to the Montana Knap-In please drop us a line at or call us at (406) 360-1752 and let us know how many are in your party and if you are tent camping or staying somewhere else in your RV. The Forest Service likes to get a tentative number of attendees so they can help us in our facility planning.

Directions: Drive to Missoula, Montana, on Interstate 90. Take exit 101 and head south on Reserve Street (also designated Hwy 93) to Hamilton. Turn right on Brooks street (also designated Hwy 93). You will pass 2 towns, Lolo and Florence. Turn right onto Bass Creek Road, 0.6 miles south of mile post 71 to Bass Creek Recreation area. Go 2 miles into Bass Creek Recreation area then turn right to Larry Creek campground group area. Go 1 mile on gravel road to our group campground.

Thursday, June 27, 2013  to  Sunday, June 30, 2013
15th Annual Bald Eagle Knap-in

15th Annual Bald Eagle knap-in
Bald Eagle State Park off PA Rt. 150

Come jpoin us on the shore of a 1730 acre lake for our annual Knap-in. All weekend the re will be stone tool making, by knappers of all levels. Watch and learn or ask and participate. Learn a new skill. There will also be periodic demonstrations of, bow making,cordage making, talk on edible plants traditional archery and an international atlatl competition.
This is a family friendly event with swimming, boating and fishing . Camping for Flintknappers, vendors and reenactors is free for the weekend. No admission fees or parking fees. No setup until Thursday. Please register with the Susquehanna Flintknappers when you arrive. Earlier arrival will need to make arrangements with the State Park in the normal camping areas. No fires on the ground and must be high enough to not damage the grass. Bring a raised pit if you will need one.
Saturday will be our annual point auction. Funds go directly to making this weekend possible and participants are encouraged to donate and bid.

Dale Bookhammer: 814-832-2789
Steve Nissly: 717-426-3611

Thursday, July 04, 2013  to  Sunday, July 07, 2013
Primitive Summer Gathering East

Oxford Rod and Gun Club, 215 Ingraham Rd. Oxford , NY 13830

Vendors and demonstrators are welcome to this fun filled 4th of July event. We welcome all educators to come demonstrate. Knappers, re-enactors, primitive archers, Native American, and all the rest, come show all. The knowledge needs to be passed. There is no vending fee.

A donation to the club is welcome but not required. Any vendors or demonstrators please contact AJ Bagg (607)244-0711 pre-registration before June 1, 2013 appreciated due to advertising and space planning purposes. Contact AJ ASAP if you want to be advertised. This is a public event. We just want an idea of who is interested. Pre-registration is not required but it helps a set up plan.

We will have 4 full days of ISAC, unlimited 40 target woods 3D course ($15.00 for the entire event), Running Deer, Charging Boar, night time Coon Hunt, Practice Range, long range targets including a full size 3D elk, aerial shooting.

There are 2 ISAC targets that are available anytime a flight gets together. Scheduled ISAC tournaments are at 11am and 5 pm, all 4 days.

The club is having a Black Powder Shoot on Sunday July 7. The club welcomes all black powder shooters for this. 3D course will be closed for safety, during this shoot. Contact: Jim VanGiesen (607) 656-8882.

Primitive camping is abundant. We are NICE dog friendly. It’s great to sit around the fire, telling tall tales. The kitchen will be open for basic breakfast and lunch Fri, Sat, and Sun. There will also be a central cooking fire burning through the event for all to use. If you want to share, we welcome all donations to feed the group. No one has ever gone hungry.

Sunday, July 07, 2013  to  Sunday, July 07, 2013
Bakersfield Monthly Knap-In, Bakersfield, California

A monthly knap-in is held on the first Sunday of every month. The one-day event goes from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm at the Hart Memorial Park. The park is eight miles northeast of Bakersfield on the Alfred Harrell Highway. Knappers meet at the East end of the park.

Directions: While on highway 58, east of Bakersfield, take the Comanche exit and turn to the north. Comanche curves around 5 to 6 miles and dead ends into highway 178. Turn north on 178 (right) then a quick left (less then 14 mile) onto Alfred Harrell highway. Alfred Harrell 7-8 miles goes into Hart Park. The knap-in is 100 yards or so from the entrance on the right hand side of the park. For more information contact Gary Pickett at: Home: (661) 392-7729, Cell: (661) 444-6163, e-mail:

Friday, July 12, 2013  to  Sunday, July 14, 2013
Knap-In @ Fly's Store

July 12-14: 13th annual Knap-In hosted by Fly’s General Store, located in the beautiful scenic Duck River Basin on Hwy.7 between Sante Fe & the Natchez Trace Parkway. 5 acres of free camping to vendors (some electrical), shower facilities, Wi-Fi hook-up, food & meals available daily. Surrounded on three sides by Leipers Creek which features walking trail, blue hole fishing, swimming, & rock bars for collecting local flint & fossils. Plenty of shade & cool water for the hot summertime. Motels & B&B’s located near by. Fly’s Store is always heavily trafficked because of it’s close proximity to the Natchez Trace and it’s placement on the Tennessee Register of Historic Trails. This event is free to the public & draws more & more people every year. Come early, stay late, have fun ...Southern Hospitality Overflowing
Contact Info: Wilson Fly 931-682-2356, Carl Vanderford 931-381-1488,
Buddy Hayes,615-519-0914or

Friday, July 12, 2013  to  Sunday, July 14, 2013
4th Annual Fort Crevecoeur Knap-In

4th Annual Fort Crevecoeur Knap-In July 12-14, 2013
Fort Crevecoeur 301 Lawnridge Creve Coeur, IL 61610 (near Peoria) Last years event was great, blistering hot, but due to the wonderful people that attended we had a great time. Heck, Perry even got on TV!! There will be food and drinks available. We will also have a drawing for donated items. All native American and Abo crafts welcome. Knapping supply vendors very welcome. Camping and food vendors will be available. Mark McDaniel (309) 265-8053 , Gary Goodrich (309) 202-4302, Ted Snider 309 338-6933

Friday, July 19, 2013  to  Sunday, July 21, 2013
Central Kentucky Knap-in

Held at Bernheim Forest, Clermont, KY. Interstate 65 to exit 112, Hwy. 245 E. approx. 1 mile to Forest entrance. Motels and Restaurants at near by Shepherdsville, exit 117. Food on site at Isaac\'s Cafe. On site primitive camping for Registered Participants. (Registration $15.) Please call for camp site availability. Showers and restrooms are available. Gates closed from Dusk till Dawn. Set-up as early as Thursday after 5 p.m. Raffle of items donated by participants Saturday at 4 p.m., Proceeds go to Bernheim\'s Education Dept. The knap-in is free and open to the public 9a.m.-5p.m. daily. For more information contact: Dale Farris 502-957-2608 or Joe Yurt 502-955-8512 ext. 251.

Friday, August 23, 2013  to  Sunday, August 25, 2013
North central IN knapp-in

This knapp-in is held 2 miles west of Monon IN just off of st road 16. This show is held on a privet farm that my parents own. We have plenty of room. My parents leave there basement open for every body . This is very nice if it is hot or stormy. We try to feed all the knappers and we just put out a free will donation bucket.
If you live out west of IN and want to lay over at go to flintridge the next weekend you are more than welcome.
Fred Mosher 8323 N 200 W Monon IN 47959
Fred home phone 1 219-253-7635
Ed Mosher phone 1-574-278-6266

Friday, August 23, 2013  to  Sunday, August 25, 2013
Stone Tool Craftsman Show - Letchworth State Park, New York

Held at the Highbanks Recreation Area Letchworth State Park, New York

This is the event to attend in the northeast! Please see the flier for more detail.
2013 Show Flier

Friday, August 30, 2013  to  Sunday, September 01, 2013
Fall 2013 Flint Ridge Knap-in

Come and join us for a fun and educational weekend. Witness craftsman and artisans demonstrate how to make arrowheads, spears, stone tools, bows, atlatls, stone pipes, cordage as well as other items from hide and bone. Flint Ridge is the same location the Native Americans visited to quarry flint they needed to produce weapons and tools for everyday survival. Take a nature walk through the woods on the park trials and see the remains of the ancient quarry pits left behind by the native people. Then take a tour of the museum to learn about the history and geology of Flint Ridge.

Please visit the link (.pdf) below for complete Knap-in information:

Fall Flint Ridge Knap-in Flier

Friday, September 13, 2013  to  Sunday, September 15, 2013
Skunk River Knap-in - Mt Pleasant, Iowa

Primitive arts and skill gathering for all flintknappers and primitive crafters to show and sell their wares. Target range for atlatl and bow shooters. Camping available for fee. Search Skunk River Knap-in on Facebook. See the flier for more detail.
Skunk River Flier




Thursday, September 26, 2013  to  Sunday, September 29, 2013
16th Bois D' Arc Skills Camp & Knap-In




Held at beautiful Hulston Mill Historic Park near Greenfield MO, this event features a traditional knap-in, 50+ vendors selling all types of handmade primitive artscrafts, hands-on primitive skillsnature awareness workshops, an ISAC atlatl shoot, Saturday evening raffle, and evening entertainment from native storytellersinger John (Two Bears) Hernandez. Food concession, showers and limited electric hookups onsite. See website or call:

Bo Brown - 417 840-1615, Don Brink - 417 234-0666.





Friday, October 04, 2013  to  Sunday, October 06, 2013
Kansas Knap-In - Canton, Kansas



Kansas knapin will be held at Maxwell Wildlife Refuge which is 6 miles North and 1 1/2 mile west of Canton, Kansas. For further information you may call the Friends of Maxwell at 620-628-4455 or Randy Clark at 620-899-3946.





Thursday, October 10, 2013  to  Saturday, October 12, 2013
Second Annual North Columbia Knap-in



Patrick Farneman will host the Second Annual North Columbia Knap-in this year at the Kettle Falls Museum and Interpretive Center at 1188 St Pauls Mission Road, Kettle Falls, WA 9914. The dates are Thursday, Oct 10th thru Saturday, Oct 12th.


Participants are welcome to come a day early and are able to stay until Sunday if they wish. The site is a short walk from the historic Kettle Falls Tribal fishery and gathering place and borders National Park land. We have an open door to camp on the 7 acres of open ponderosa pine forest behind the center. We will have water available & restroom facilities, and the Staff of the center have volunteered to open the museum for us (special off-season opening) to be able to view the collections they have of local artifacts.





Friday, October 11, 2013  to  Sunday, October 13, 2013

Texas Calssic Hill Country Knap-In




Knap-In will be held on the second weekend in October yearly in Llano, Texas. The event focuses on teaching new knappers and those who may have a desire to learn the craft. We hold the event at the Robinson City Park, 2 miles west of downtown Llano on F.M.152. There will be a sign posted at the entrance to the park. Entry fee is 10.00 per person to cover the expense of reserving the pavillion each year. There are R.V hookups at the park with some motel accomodations in Llano. The site is on the banks of the Llano River and the pavillion protects the knappers in the event of inclement weather. Many knappers prepare food for the attendees. Hope to see you there.

Jim Scallorn, Richard Dobie, Mick Thurber





Saturday, October 26, 2013  to  Saturday, October 26, 2013
Fall Knap-In - Letchworth State Park, New York




Saturday October 26, 2013 10:00 AM at the Highbanks Recreation Area, South Shelter pavilion;


Open to the public; official meeting of the GVFKA Board of Directors all are encouraged to attend.





Saturday, February 15, 2014  to  Sunday, February 16, 2014
Dade City FL Knap-In, FL

Ed Mosher Knives!

Both of my Grandparents had an artifact collections.I found my first arrowheads when I was 5. I chipped my first arrowhead when I was in the 4 grade. I used a nail in a handle and a railroad spike as a hammer.We don't have any knappable material where I live close so I used small flakes that I found in the fields. When I was in high school I found DC Wldorf's book on flintknapping. It Took off The bug bit me hard. In 1988 I meet Jeff Pig and Dan Lincoln at a show that I was knapping at.They gave my a few pointers and some larger chert. I attended my first knapp-in in 1989 at the Jeff Pig farm. I have been hitting it hard ever since. I like to swing large antler. I realy like to make large percussion points.Though I love a challenge.I have been known to make eccentrics,fluted points,Danish daggers and now working on learning fog work. "

Primordial Soup for the Caveman Soul
inter-galactic knap-IN drawing by:   Jonathan Seminara-King

Elmer Snagnasty
Photo: Automatically corrected this photo using Perfectly Clear for Android

inter-galactic knap-IN drawings by:   Jonathan Seminara-King

For those unable to attend the recent Intergalactic/Pan Dimensional Knapper’s Convention held every 710 Earth Years in Celebration of the half life of Silicon 32, it was AWESOME! There were a number of competitions for knapping including Largest Biface, Narrow Entry, Thinness, and Eccentrics. The Zeta Reticulum served as a third party panel of Judges for the event as they seemed to be the only ones there with measuring instruments good enough to accurately tell who the winner of each competition was. Also they selected an enormous collection of Sentient Life forms who knapped through out Time and Space, and erased their memories when they got back to their home planet, (so if you don’t remember going that’s why). When they went to erase my memory I just acted all brain dead and I guess they thought they had already erased it or something. Whew, close one!

inter-galactic knap-IN drawing by:   Jonathan Seminara-King

inter-galactic knap-IN drawing by:   Jonathan Seminara-King

The Winner of the Narrow Entry Competition broke the record by 3 whole atoms. Using nothing but a Titanium alloy spring loaded punch and an Electron Microscope pair of Optivisors, considered “Old Fashioned” by some of the Future Knappers Present accustomed to the their digital Nanoflakers and seemed to be quite sore about losing this competition. This feat was accomplished by none other than Commander Chokatay from the Starship Enterprise! Worf also did a demonstration of his planet’s archetypal Bat’leth and a few other Klingon traditional weapons that seemed to be made of wood with Uranium Glass Microliths hafted in them much like the Egyptian scythe or something. Not to be out done the Yautja from Predator who showed a cool hafting technique where they rolled a stick in Xenomorph Saliva and then rolled that in piles of debitage to make a crazy razor bat type of weapon. Basically it was a universal knapping pissing contest between some very old rivals. The Vulcans attending took a lot of crap about some previous remarks Spock made that “knapping was just not logical”, but when he finished his final flake on a Mobius Strip interconnected with another Mobius strip stitched on a triangular platform, knapped from the same stone,

they were like, “Dude can knap!” and received an honorable mention, although it had been rumored that the Ancient Mayans may have bribed the Judges with Mushroom Chocolates for first place in the Eccentric Competition.


I saw some crazy Chromapsychic Glass that changes color when you look at it and think stuff. Also the RapidAgetizer was an impressive machine that chemically altered almost any organic material into mineralized silica based knappable stone. Of course a couple hooligans thought it would be funny to knap their own Coprolites and we all lost our RapidAgate privileges for the rest of the event. It seemed that there were a lot of knapper Female Presence at the event all quite capable of making some amazing precise and super thin points, but we were all warned against fraternizing with them on account that those women were like our own Great Great Great Great Grandmothers and that any chance of Genetic Swapping could result in a total rupture in the history of mankind and possibly negate our own existence. A general warning against ancestralmancy really bummed out some of the single knappers, but hey, it’s the rules.

knappers, but hey, it’s the rules.


The Largest Biface Competition turned out to be sort of a weight class event where the Na’vi and Wookies and this dude named Coons from Planet Earth reigned supreme. Chewy, who was expected to take first place, was later disqualified when it was discovered his 4 foot biface had been repaired via cold fusion, and duct tape, putting the smallest member of the Biface Competition, as the current Universal Biface Champ.

 Photo: RoboSketti: My pet Robot. 
Trained in Lithic Authentication, Says beyond a shadow of a doubt that this Artifact is a Real Artifact from it's strictest Man-Made Definition. Circa 2013 Travis County,Planet Earth.

Reporting from Planet Earth, until the next Silicon 32 half-life, think outside the Triangle.
Elmer Snagnasty
This drawing By Ray Harwood. Future edge wear experiments on flint sword.

Photo: Discovery of Metallic Biomech Borosilicate Lithics. Generally accepted as the most Resilient to wear and break.  Circa Post Apocalypse. Engineered my Sub- Genius Wildmen in to ceremoniously mark the transition from Stone age to The Age of Information....and some of the ..other ages,..that between those two?


Teaming up: Handles by Jack Bone Carver! Blade by Chris Nichols


Photo: Here's a little stinger! :)

Here is some information about "California Knappers 'Club"

     The California Knappers, which began in 2010, is a knapping get-together of flintknappers who like to flake stones, learn from each other, trade for materials and meet fellow lithic knappers. The get-together is open to flintknappers of all levels and expertise --- from novice, intermediate and advanced knappers. Anyone who is interested in the skill of making stone tools is more than welcome. Besides flintknapping, we also share information on other skills of the past, like traditional bow and arrow making, hafting techniques, fire making, atlatl construction and creating a bow string. Occasional field trips are organized to gather obsidian and to practice archery/atlatl shooting at a local archery range. California Knappers serve as a source of information and as a means of communication among flintknappers, providing inspiration and friendship.
     The knapping get-together is open to the public. 
We meet one day in every month. There is no fee to attend. We come together at a city park called Karl Nordvik Park in Fremont, CA, from 10:00 to 3:00. Knappers work on their lithic project or practice the art of flintknapping, while learning tips and advice from fellow flintknappers.

     For more information, access the California Knappers webpage on the website. The link is If you would like to get involved in the California Knappers get-together, contact Dino Labiste at


Dino Labiste

California Knappers

Knapping Tips
Dino Labiste
Your platform should be less than 90°. Before striking, your working edge should be below the centerline.
After much repetition, your billet swing should be at a constant angle everytime you hit your stone. If you tilt your preform at different angles, you can control how long your flakes are and how much material you remove.
Where is your platform? Platforms made and struck below the center line of the mass make flakes.
To create a biface that is thin and lenticular in shape, thinning flakes are best struck from the side margins. If you try to thin from the ends, you will probably end up making a shorter biface and, also, run the increased risk of breakage from end shock. When thinning from the side margin, correct striking location and striking platform are very important.
Careful and properly built striking platforms are one major key to predictable flake removal. The platform should also be ground using an abrasive or granular material like sandstone. Grinding dulls the edge so the billet can grab hold of the platform rather than crushing a super-sharp edge that has no strength.
Step fractures are the result of the flake snapping off rather than feathering out completely. A number of things can cause this: 1) Holding the piece too tightly against a hard pad will sometimes interrupt the detachment of the flake. Hold your piece against the pad at an angle so that there a gap between the pad and the area where the flake will come off. When using a hard pad, a slot can be cut into the pad where the flake will fall. 2) If your pressure angle is too steep, this can cause the flake to dive in. 3) Pressure flaking into a large mass.
When you get into the pressure flaking stage on your biface, first straighten out your working edge. To take off flakes on one side of your biface, move your working edge below the center line. Begin removing consecutive flakes from the end of the biface where your thumb is located and move along the edge to the other end of your biface.
When you are ready to pressure flake your biface, the technique of upward flicking your working edge with a pressure flaker will create a 45 degree cavity platform. The pressure flaker is then placed in that cavity platform, pressure is applied inward and the flake is snapped off with a downward pressure. This technique allows long flakes and does not require constant abrading (or no abrading at all). Wear safety goggles or glasses to protect your eyes from small flakes propelling upwards.
When using traditional knapping tools, acquire hammerstones of various weights. Sandstone cobbles can be found along creek beds. Moose and deer billets can be purchased at pet stores. The antler pieces are sold as dog chews. They come in various odd shapes and sizes. You will have to be selective to find the right antler for your billet needs. The prices are reasonable compared to the rates from knapping websites. Flea markets are another good source to acquire deer antlers for pressure flaking tines. It will take a bit of searching to find your traditional tools, but it is possible to spend an inexpensive amount of cash to equip yourself with some Stone Age knapping tools.
After much practice, you have probably standardized your billet swing so that it is coming down at pretty much the same angle all the time. You are hitting your platforms pretty much the same way every time. Since this swing has become a constant, we have an opportunity to have some control over the thinning process and the length of the flakes we take off.
If you tilt your preform at different angles, you can control how long your flakes are and how much material you remove. Depending on how much material you are trying to get through, you may have to adjust the power of your strike as well or use a heavier billet. A lot can be accomplished by understanding how to use different angles.
You take your swing and you hope that you kept everything in position during that time. You try to keep from flinching or tilting the stone at the wrong angle. If you’ve been having trouble with the accuracy of your strikes or holding the correct angles, why not rest the preform on your leg where you can easily hold it at the proper angle. You’ll have better control and accuracy this way, as opposed to freehand knapping or holding your preform out in the air with one hand.
Everyone has their own style, but if you are having trouble with accuracy and angles, give knapping on the leg a try. The more you can control the variables, the better your knapping skills will be.
To shape your preform, lay your piece flat on your lap and knock off very small flakes from the edges of your preform. This will accomplish two things. First, you are starting to shape the desired form for your point. Second, you are moving the working edge to one side of the center of the mass on your preform. Flipping the preform over, your working edge is now below the centerline.
"One rule is useful to keep in mind when doing percussion flaking: follow ridges. Remember, the force spreads equally in all directions. This is true only to the extent that there is sufficient mass to transfer the blow. In practice, the force will spread furthest along the ridges. In other words, you should align your hammerstone blows such that the force applied will follow an existing ridge. This can be either a natural ridge on the core rock, or it can be the ridge left behind by a previous flake scar. By consistently following ridges, you will be able to strike the longest possible flake."
Excerpt from "Flintknapping, The Art of Making Stone Tools" by Paul Hellweg
"Striking Angles: The principal of conchoidal fracture must be kept in mind when determining the best striking angle. Remember, flakes are removed in a direction different from the angle of applied force . . . . The closer your striking angle is to the ideal angle of cone fracture, the longer your resulting flakes will be. If the striking angle is decreased (that is, the blow comes closer to being straight in to the core), you run the risk of obtaining step fractures. If the striking angle is increased, then only short flakes will be detached."
Excerpt from "Flintknapping, The Art of Making Stone Tools" by Paul Hellweg
"The common and effective technique for making bifaces is soft-hammer percussion using a bone, antler, or wooden hammer, also called a billet or baton or percussor. Bifaces, including some of considerable refinement, can also be made by hard-hammer percussion. . . . . Soft, as in 'soft hammer,' just means softer than hard -- that is , antler or wood as opposed to stone -- and relatively elastic as opposed to relatively inelastic. . . . . A soft hammer is particularly useful in thinning, flattening, and shaping bifaces because it is the easiest way of removing large, relatively flat and thin flakes with small bulbs of percussion. This is because when a soft hammer strikes a core, it compressese slightly, and the force is spread out and transmitted more slowly and evenly. The kind of flakes produced by a soft hammer are necessarty if one is trying to produce a large, thin tool with extensive working and with a straight edge."
Excerpt from "Flintknapping, Making & Understanding Stone Tools" by John C. Whittaker
"In order to select the best material for your [knapping] needs, you should have an understanding of the glass-like characteristics to seek in your raw material. Briefly, good knapping stone is:
1) Cryptocrystalline: The mineral's crystal structure is so small that it practically cannot be seen. In essence, the mineral behaves as if it had no crystal structure and thus transfers force in the same manner as glass.
2) Elastic: The mineral has the ability to return to its original state after having been depressed by the application of force. According to Crabtree, the best lithic materials are almost perfectly elastic.
3) Homogeneous: The material is of the same structure throughout; in other words, it is free of any impurities or inclusions which could hamper the flaking process.
4) Isotropic: The material has the same properties in all directions; that is, it behaves just like a heavy liquid. "
Excerpt from "Flintknapping, The Art of Making Stone Tools" by Paul Hellweg
"Alternate Flaking: Normal pressure flaking is next to impossible on blanks with thick square edges. These troublesome edges are best removed by alternate flaking; that is, by removing pressure flakes from alternate sides. Start at one corner and remove a short stubby flake by changing the angle of the antler tine to about 45 degrees. Then flip the blank over and remove a similar short stubby flake from the opposite side. For this second flake, do not positon the tine on the blank's original edge. Instead, start the second flake from the new edge created by removing the first flake. Continue in this manner until the entire thick edge is removed. Each time, flip the blank over and start from the newly exposed edge left by the previous effort. Once the entire edge is removed, then the rest of the blank may be worked by standard pressure flaking techniques."
Excerpt from "Flintknapping, The Art of Making Stone Tools" by Paul Hellweg
When starting with a raw cobble, take the time to READ your stone. Where are the high spots that need to be removed? Are there any 90 degree angles that require alternate flaking? Where is my centerline? What can I make from the stone? Taking the opporutnity to examine your cobble thoroughly is a good way to envision how you should proceed with the lithic reduction process.
A platform that has been "isolated" from the material around it is called an isolated platform. To create an isolated platform, you just simply remove a short flake on both sides of your ridge with a fairly thin pressure flaker. After this process, you have a platform that sticks out more than the rest of the edge. The energy is transfered much farther "down range" using isolations. This also alleviates breakage when the point gets thin.
Indirect percussion is a technique that is seldom used in modern times, but widely practiced prehistorically. It involves the use of a bone or antler punch and a hammer. The physics of punch use allows more massive flakes to be removed than by using the antler billet or hammerstone as a percussion instrument. The accuracy allowed by the punch is also evident. Since indirect percussion can be so precisely placed, the punch and hammer make it possible to apply a large force to very small platforms of a stone tool than in other methods of flake removal.
"Platform Preparation: In order to do the best percussion flaking, the edge of the lithic core should have a well-defined platform. If the natural platform is weak (slightly lipped, etc.), it an be strengthened by light abrading. Your hammerstone can do this task and thus serve a dual purpose. Abrade in one direction only, OPPOSITE to the direction flakes are to be struck.
If your core does not have a natural platform, then you will have to prepare your own. Do this by carefully using high angle trimming blows to remove small pieces of material on both sides of the desired platform. If done properly, this will leave a well-defined and isolated platform."
Excerpt from "Flintknapping, The Art of Making Stone Tools" by Paul Hellweg
Wyatt R. Knapp's "Flintknappers Tool Kit":
1. A leather pad of thick leather to protect your hand when pressure flaking.
2. A deer antler tine pressure flaker (or a copper tipped one). Antler tines work very nicely. They wear faster than copper but you get great pressure flakes. If you learn percussion work well, you will only need the pressure flakers for final edge sharpening and retouch anyway.
3. A medium sized antler baton, about 8 inches or so long and about 2 inches across at the business end. Make sure it is a good dense one. Antler is NOT harder to use than copper boppers. Knapping is not easier with copper. It is just as easy to learn to knap with traditional tools than it is with copper billets and such.
4. A few hammerstones of various sizes. Quartzite or some other hard stone of a nice egg shape. One about 1 1/2 inches long, one about 2 1/2 inches. Also, you can add a couple of sandstone ones that will be able to be used on easier material like obsidian or glass. You can usually find hammerstones by gravel pits, the lake shore, etc.
5. An abrader. Either of hard sandstone or a manufactured one.
6. A large thick leather pad to protect your leg while knapping.
7. A notcher. Make it from a cow rib bone, or an antler tine, or make a copper tipped one.
Now you will notice that of all those things, there is only one that would probably constitute a major purchase. That would be the moose antler baton. Prices for good antler batons can vary and there are deals out there. Just make sure the one you choose is good and hard, and dense.
". . . . learn the cause and prevention of these [biface] fractures.
1. End Shock: a fracture which runs straight and which has a slightly lipped edge. It is caused by the application of excessive force to an end of the biface. To prevent, either do not strike from the end, or -- if you must strike an end -- support the opposite end on a hard wood anvil.
2. Perverse Fracture: a spiral or twisting fracture which typically does not run straight. It is caused by striking a side margin with too much force or by attempting to remove too large a flake (again, from a side margin). To prevent, use less force and/or a better platform."
Excerpt from "Flintknapping, The Art of Making Stone Tools" by Paul Hellweg
"Serrated points are a product of the Early Archaic phases in the midwest and also occur in later periods in the form of small arrow points. . . . . On these points the serrations are made by accentuating the flake scar junctures. This is accomplished by leaving the edge ragged after pressure flaking and by carefully hollowing out the spaces between the junctures where larger serrations are desired. . . . the edges in between the junctures in some areas may be a little too sharp for clean flake removals, and it may be necessary to grind them a bit. To get into the hollows without touching the serrations a thin piece of sandstone or a quartzite flake can be used."
Excerpt from "The Art of Flint Knapping" by D.C. Waldorf



 Dan Stueber, A percussionist that percussion knaps! and pressure

Flintknapper, Lithic Technologist, Primitive Skills Practitioner

Three knives

Dan Stueber has been a flintknapper and practitioner of primitive technologies since 1982. He has studied flintknapping and lithic technology with Dr. John Fagan and Dr. Errett Callahan and for the last two decades has served as teaching assistant to several of Dr. Fagan's lithic analysis classes and workshops and to Dr. Callahan's flintknapping master classes. He has taught at University of Victoria and co-taught courses with Dr. Fagan in all aspects of lithic technology and analysis for Portland State University, Malheur Wildlife Refuge and to archaeologists with the US Forest Service, US Park Service, US Bureau of Land Management and California Dept. of Transportation. Dan is the Lithic Specialist at Archaeological Investigations Northwest where he does technological analysis and has contributed to reports on hundreds of prehistoric sites including the entire assemblage from the Marmes Rockshelter (45FR50).*
Dan has had the opportunity to study stone tool collections and technologies in many countries around the world and continues to teach courses in ground stone and lithic technology in the Pacific Northwest and flintknapping courses through Earthwalk Northwest.
Dan does custom orders of stone knives and replicas of stone points in any style. You can contact him at for price quotes.

*Marmes Rockshelter; A Final Report on 11,000 Years of Cultural Use, Edited by Brent A. Hicks, Washington State Univ. Press, Pullman WA. Dan Stueber drumming

Drummer, Percussionist

Dan is an alumnus of Berklee College of Music, where he was an arranging and composition major and specialized in jazz and classical percussion. Dan has studied drums and percussion with Emilio "Buff" DeFazio, Harry Peterson Jr., Lou Carto, Lou Mangiano, Fred Buda, Alan Dawson, Dom Famularo, Dave Weckl, Steve Smith and Horacio Hernandez. Dan has toured with Rio Clemente's jazz trio, Lisa Donovan, Jim Nabbie's Ink Spots, the Hager Brothers, The Flying Karamazov Brothers, including their Broadway show, and Marv and Rindy Ross's Quarterflash in Japan. A few of the current groups Dan plays with are The Trail Band, Jonny Dark and the Wondertones with guitarist Neal Grandstaff, Portland guitarist Kit Garoutte, and formerly with the traditional jazz band The Shanghai Woolies.
If you're interested in hiring Dan for a studio session or any other work, contact him at .

Paul Hubner Here's a Pic of 2 jigs I made because I can't develop enough force to chip otherwise. The top one is made from a hunk of 2x4 and the other one is from a bed leg. Maybe this idea will help others who have a hard time.

Photo: Here's a Pic of 2 jigs I made because I can't develop enough force to chip otherwise. The top one is made from a hunk of 2x4 and the other one is from a bed leg. Maybe this idea will help others who have a hard time.

Knife of Poetry and Art
Michael Brown (Mesa, Arizona)
Knife of Poetry and Art. This is a very interesting knife. The blade is made from Burns Green Obsidian. The town of Burns, where this stone comes from, was named after the Scottish Poet, Robert Burns. The The handle is Picasso Marble, named for the wonderful art work of Pablo Picasso.

Pablo Ruiz y Picasso, known as Pablo Picasso (Spanish: [ˈpaβlo piˈkaso]; 25 October 1881 – 8 April 1973) was a Spanish painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, and stage designer who spent most of his adult life in France. As one of the greatest and most influential artists of the 20th centurydle is Picasso Marble, named for the wonderful art work of Pablo Picasso.

Robert Burns (25 January 1759 – 21 July 1796) (also known as Robbie Burns,[1] Rabbie Burns, Scotland's favourite son, the Ploughman Poet, Robden of Solway Firth, the Bard of Ayrshire and in Scotland as The Bard)[2][3] was a Scottish poet and lyricist. He is widely regarded as the national poet of Scotland and is celebrated worldwide. He is the best known of the poets who have written in the Scots language, although much of his writing is also in English and a light Scots dialect, accessible to an audience beyond Scotland. He also wrote in standard English, and in these his political or civil commentary is often a blunt.

Burns Green Obsidian is from a quarry near Burns, Oregon. As you see in the blade is a beautiful olive green volcanic glass. Common on the market at one time, is now quite rare. The material is sot after aggressively by flintknappers and rock hounds. The flaking characteristics of the material are quite desirable. 

A metamorphic, Picasso Jasper is also sold under the names Picasso marble and Picasso stone, although it is most widely recognized and sold under the name of jasper. This stone exhibits a widely varying color pattern, which range from black and whites, to grey and subtle blue hues with black patches and streaking.



2013 Yosemite Knap-in Announcement*




Ben Cunningham will host the 3rd Annual Yosemite Knap-in at the Indian Village in Yosemite National Park, California the first weekend in August.


209-372-0303 - office

209-352-4086 - cell


Jim Winn, "Paleo Jim"
 Sweetwater Biface Film


Dwayne and Bill  Earnhardt

of Modern Flint knapping

In our original article about our theory on how the SWB was made we mentioned that it was possibly ground prior to the flaking. We believe we have found some flat spots or "islands" on the cast as further evidence that the blade was ground prior to it being flaked.

Below are some pictures of the SWB cast. If you look closely at the cast with a magnifying glass you can see some flat places or "islands" on both faces of the blade. These islands are where the flakes did not run entirely across the face of the blade which left these flat spot islands. We have circled these spots on the cast so anyone who has a cast can find them easily as well.

On the top side of the divot(top side in reference to the picture here) you can also see small scars that appear to show where an island was pried out to form the divot.

Is it possible that the blade laying in the ground for 500 years rubbed these flat spots? That is possible, but if so, why didn't the entire blade rub flat?

This is the same method(ground then flaked) we used to make our SWB replica which has an average thickness of .22 inches compared to the cast  which has an average of .17 inches. Below is a side view picture of our replica next to the cast.

For reference, we will call the side WITHOUT the divot as Side 1, which is the top picture. On side 1 we have circled 3 spots where the flat spot islands are located.

Below is Side 2 which is the side the divot is on, the divot is actually circled and is the middle circle or the second from the left. So Side 2 has two flat spot islands on it which are also circled.

 Below is the picture I mentioned above comparing the SWB replica to the SWB cast.
I about fell out of my chair when I was working on my links to the Volgu blade and I found the following information. Am I reading this wrong, or does S.A. Semenov basically say The Volgu was made exactly in the same method as our theory about how The Sweetwater was made?

That being pressure flaking over percussion or a "POP" blade.

We had actually wondered about the flaking on The Volgu, because a lot of it actually had the same scarring pattern we discussed with The Sweetwater, but only having a picture to go by, made it tough to actually see.

If The Volgu, then why not The Sweetwater as well?

Here is the qoute from S.A Semenov from 1957 I am referring to:

"The peculiarity of this (bifacial reduction) is that it was a method of pressure on the edge of the flint rough-out (preform), used by Upper Paleolithic man, not just to remove tiny flakes and alter the angle of the point and shape of the (core) blade, but also to take off large and relatively thin flakes from the surface of the rough-out (preform). In other words it increased the plastic possibilities of stone working. By this means the irregular rough-out (preform) could be given a desired thickness at any point, made flatter, the end sharpened; the curve taken out of the top, edge or base."Here is a link to the more information:

Here is a qoute from my Sweetwater article, discussing our theory of how the Sweetwater was made, which can be found on the second page of this blog dated August 7th.

"The most intriguing part of all, he actually has identified at least 8 percussion flakes on Sweetwater, although the other 40 plus are pressure flakes. One of which, is obvious from the scarring cutting into the percussion flake from the pressure flake next to it, that the percussion flake was flaked first. So we believe the Sweetwater was percussion flaked to a thin preform similar to a rectangle in shape, then the large pressure flakes were removed, then the ends shaped with pressure flakes to finish the blade."

So what do you think?


Dwayne and Bill  Earnhardt

of Modern Flint knapping

What a difference, does it really make?

I was asked by someone at the Flint Ridge knapin, what difference does .05 inches really make in the diameter of a piece. When I explained that it made a huge difference in W/T ratio which corresponds with the level of skill of the knapper. The person replied "so what, if someone is over a 10/1 ratio, it is all good, why does it matter?".

While I agree, 10/1 is a threshold and thus why the points awarded in my scoring system start to increase greatly at that point. But 13/1 takes tremendously more skill than 10/1, and once you get above 13/1, every slight increase takes more skill at an ever more multiplying rate. In other words, 15/1 compared to 13/1 take much more skill than the difference in 10/1 to 12/1, although they are is only two ratios difference in both cases.

If you go from .22 inches to .17 inches in diameter on a blade that is 3 inches in width, your W/T ratio goes from 13.6 to 17.6, that is a tremendous difference!

If .05 inches doesn't matter, then why do we keep score or run a time clock on any thing in life? The current record for the 100 meter sprint is 9.58 seconds, the tenth fastest time is only .28 slower, such a small difference, why not give them all a gold medal? What about when Michael Phelps in the Olympics beat his competitor by 1/100 of a second. 1/100 of a second! Did they both get gold medals?

I agree, give credit where credit is due, if someone makes a good blade, give them credit. But I think you get my point, slight differences in diameters on blades truly can make a big difference in the skill level being represented.

UPDATE---I just realized that a little over 1 week of making this original post, that someone set a better second place time in the 100 meter sprint. The difference between first and second is now .11 seconds.


Dwayne and Bill  Earnhardt

of Modern Flint knapping
Below are the scores for the Sweetwater, the Volgu and dad's best Sweetwater replica to date. But keep in mind I have not actually measured the Volgu. I am using measurements I found listed online and I am using a standard W/T and L/T ratio with the Volgu(since I have no way of knowing the average diameter) but using an average W/T and L/T on the Sweetwater and replica.

The Sweetwater has a total score of 6606.6, getting 3800 points for the W/T and 2300 for L/T.
The Volgu has a total score of 4083.5, getting 936 points for W/T and 2250 for L/T
The replica has a total score of 3609.6, getting 1584 points for W/T and 1450 for L/T.

The Sweetwater has a W/T of 17/1 and L/T of 55.5/1
The Volgu has a W/T of 13.6/1 and L/T of 55/1
The replica has a W/T of 14.7/1 and L/T of 46/1.

If you are not familiar with the Modern Flintknapping Scoring System, it can be found at under "grading and scoring". How I figure an average diameter can also be found by actually clicking on the "grading and scoring" link itself.  

Measuring Devices

It is very important to use the proper devices for measuring the diameter of a blade. While measuring the blade it is also very important to keep the blade perfectly level, any changes in angles or twisting of the blade in any direction can change your readings. I like to place the blade where both ends are the only thing touching two elevated platforms which are at the same height(which keeps the blade level across). This gives much better results than trying to hold the blade in your hand.

Pictured above is the device I use, it is a Fowler machine tool thickness gauge that measures down to 1000th of an inch. You can purchase them at Please note, you need a deep throat device for measuring wider blades.

The above link appears to be going to a page with a list of several types of calibers. So when you go to that page, click on "heavy duty" under the thickness listing in the following section, which is the 9th section down.

Inside & Outside Measurement TOP
ThicknessCaliper GagesSnap GagesBore Gages
Pocket Style
Heavy Duty
Snap Cal
Internal Dial
External Dial
Long Range
Heavy Duty
Digital Models
Deluxe Digital
Dial Snap Gage
Electronic Snap Gage
John Bull
Xtender-D Series
Xtender-E Series
Deluxe Cylinder
Digital Cylinder
Shallow Bore Gage
Setting Master

Some types of micrometers may be used for measuring diameters as far as accuracy, but I have found finding ones with proper throat depths can be a problem and using the devices themselves for measuring blades can be difficult.

This type of caliber shown below, is fine for measuring width and length but it IS NOT accurate for measuring diameters.

If you read my following post, you will see just why using proper equipment is critical.

I bought my father the Sweetwater cast for Christmas in 2008. I will never forget the look on his face when he laid eyes on it for the first time. He sat in total amazement of the blade. I could read his mind, how was this made he was wondering.

After the initial shock of it, his quest to figure out just how it was made began. Dad has always "thought out of the box" in his flintknapping work and coming up with new ideas or new ways to do things has never been a problem for him. For many years, this was out of necessity because he had very little contact with other knappers, just because they weren't many around. So i believe this helped to keep his mind open on his flintknapping projects. So i had faith, that if anyone could figure it out, he could.

We spent many a hour studying the platforms and flaking patterns and discussing possible options to how it was made. He spent countless more on his own, on a nightly basis, studying the cast.

Since the Sweetwater appeared to be made by percussion with the big wide flakes and that was the prevailing theory, he started concentrating more on percussion work. But he had his doubts from the start if the blade was actually percussion flaked due to the precise nature it would require to make it. You are talking about being able to a hit 1/8 inch platform prefect every time and be able to follow through with your swing without causing breakage. The hand eye coordination needed to do this for approximately 50 large flakes found on the Sweetwater blade would be an incredible feat, seemingly impossible.

He started to believe more and more, the Sweetwater was actually pressured flaked. But he had no real way to prove it and no idea how it was actually accomplished. He could get the thinness, he had actually made some that were thinner. But the width was the problem, it was too wide to hold in your hand and pressure flake. Also, the pressure required to remove such enormous sized flakes would require more force than you could generate with an Ishi stick over an extended number of flakes needed to complete the blade. But he did know, that he had produced such flakes on occasion while pressure flaking in the past, so he knew it was possible.

Although, he still wasn't certain it was pressured flaked, it was his theory. Then one day he calls me and says he has noticed something in the flaking pattern. The best way I can describe it is an uniform "rippling" pattern of the compression rings left on the blade where the the flake itself was removed. We compared this to other pressure and percussion blades, and it became apparent that only the pressure blades had this uniform pattern.(see pictures). We believe this compression rings rippling is caused by the speed the flake is removed at, with a slower removal such as in pressure, causing the more uniform pattern. You can see the rippling effect in percussion work as well, but it isn't as uniform and normally seen at the end of the flake run, when the speed of the flake removal is slowing down.

He had seen a few knappers using lever devices over the years at various knapins. He had also read about Reinhardt who supposedly used some type of lever device. So dad had considered this as a possible option to how the Sweetwater was made. Then while at the N. Georgia Knapin in April 2009, he visited Dan Spiers booth. Dan had bought our pressure flaking video "Adjust" in the previous year and dad wanted to see what Dan thought of it. Dan replied that the video showed the importance of lateral flexibility in the blade holding hand. Dan was also demonstrating the use of a lever device and suggested to dad that he should make one as well.

The problem with the lever as he had discussed with Dan, was you didn't have the lateral flexibility as you did in your hands and it took a lot of time to adjust for proper flaking angles. Dad knew being able to get the proper platforms and angles while applying the large amount of pressure needed would be the key to success, but also the hardest to accomplish.

But he had became convinced by this point that the Sweetwater was pressured flaked, and it encouraged him even more to figure it out. Then after 4 months of various ideas including a 8 foot long weighted "Ishi stick" attached to the rafters, various support devices and various lever devices(total of 17 different techniques)all leading to dead ends. He would tear them apart and start all over. This of course lead to a lot of aggravation and frustration. He atleast was learning what didn't work. Then one day, everything clicked, and it all came together.

It took 5 hours to finish the blade, having to stop and prepare platforms over 30 times. Each flake removal is critical and on the "edge" of breaking the blade. But the more he did it, the more astonished he was over the amount of pressure and force that could be applied to the stone. Once he had this breakthrough of sorts, he told me he learned more about pressure flaking in one day than he had in years. I hadn't seen him as excited about any particular technique in flintknapping in my life and he described it as a flintknapper's nirvanic experience of sorts.

The most intriguing part of all, he actually has identified at least 8 percussion flakes on Sweetwater, although the other 40 plus are pressure flakes. One of which, is obvious from the scarring cutting into the percussion flake from the pressure flake next to it, that the percussion flake was flaked first. So we believe the Sweetwater was percussion flaked to a thin preform similar to a rectangle in shape, then the large pressure flakes were removed, then the ends shaped with pressure flakes to finish the blade.This would explain why you have large flakes which appear to have wide platforms that would require a large billet to produce. When in actuality you are not seeing the original platform of that flake because it was removed when the ends were shaped. We also found from experience if you do not make the blade in this proper sequence, breakage is very high due to the torque applied to the blade.

So this would make the Sweetwater a POP blade(pressure over percussion), which is a similar technique to what some modern knappers are doing. After the percussion, it is possible there was some grinding before the pressure as well.

Of course, like many things in flintknapping, this is only a theory. We are not saying this is absolutely the way the Sweetwater was made. We are saying it is possibly how it was made.

We are not saying it is impossible to percussion such a blade, we learned long ago to never say never in flintknapping. But if any knapper can ever totally percussion a blade to the Sweetwater dimensions, I hope to be the first one to shake his hand.
Val Waldorf's Illustrations Sweetwater


Dwayne and Bill  Earnhardt

of Modern Flint knapping
In the last two editions of CHIPS Vol. 23 no 2 and 3, in the article titled "Scar Patterns An Illustrated Guide" D.C. Waldorf wrote about how his late wife Val took special interest in capturing accurate portrayal in her illustrations of stone tools. D.C. wrote quote "In her work illustrating stone tools, accurate portrayal of flake scares was everything! Right down to the texture of the material, shading of the negative bulbs, the flow and intensity of the ripples, the radial splits caused by the bending of the stone under the force of the blow, and even the "tearing" along the scar junctures that is often seen in very fine grained rocks was all subject to her pen. If it aided in the interpretation or reading of the scars, then she made sure it was there."

Later in the article D.C. gave a quote from Val which she wrote about her illustrations that appeared in CHIPS Vol. 5, no 1, 1993 which read, quote "Using arced lines, and varying the spacing between them, you can approximate the depth of the compression rings[ripples]"

If you have read my previous article on this blog dated August 7, 2009 titled "Replicating the Sweetwater blade" you will know that the uniform rippling effect of the compression rings is our main evidence in our belief that the Sweetwater blade was actually finished with pressure flakes. You can read the article at and see pictures of the compression rings at

In our video "Replicating the Sweetwater Biface" we discuss this in more detail.

So I was very happy to see in part II of D.C's article of Scar Patterns in vol 23 no 3 there was a picture of Val's illustration of the Sweetwater Biface which has never been shown before according to D.C. In the illustration you can clearly see the uniform rippling effect of compression rings. I must commend Val on her ability to capture this very important feature of the blade!

I do not intend to infer that D.C accepts our theory that the Sweetwater was finished with pressure flaking. In the contrary, according to his article I have been referencing he believes it was done with percussion.

My only point is Val was able to capture the compression rings rippling in her illustrations which illustrates what we have been saying very well. I wish I would have been aware of this Sweetwater illustration when I wrote my original article on this topic.

For those who do not receive CHIPS, below is a scanned picture of the Val's illustration of the Sweetwater Biface found on page 7 of Vol. 23 no 3.


Replicating the Sweetwater Slideshow Now Available!



Dwayne and Bill  Earnhardt

of Modern Flint knapping

We now have a slide show DVD with audio commentary which shows the step by step process of the method developed by Bill Earnhardt covering the making of the Sweetwater Replicas.(the top blade in this picture is the Sweetwater cast and the other is the replica)

It shows the complete design of the table used, the lever device itself, the support mechanism used, correct platforming, the shape of the tip of the pressure flaker, method and technique used for the lever pressure flaking along with ruler comparisons so you can get the exact right angles to apply the pressure . All this with close up picture shots, drawings, and instructional commentary from Bill.


$20 including shipping, to purchase visit

Here is a link to learn more about the Sweetwater Biface

Ray Harwood
I was a young college student . I was at the Northridge Archaeological Research Center (NARC) at California State University, Northridge.


 My professor and man in charge of NARC was the late Clay Singer. Clay had received his Masters Degree at UCLA in Lithic based Archaeology.
 Clay had gone over seas to study with world renowned archaeologist and flintknapper Francois Bordes in the1970s. When he returned  he was a wealth of lithic knowledge and he applied it to the California collections, that is partly why French lithic terms are used in California lithic analysis today. Clay and were working on several experimental archaeology
projects at the time:

1.       Experiments were conducted to determine something about the variables affecting the breakage patterns of projectile points.

2.       Experiments were conducted to determine something about crescent point s functions.

3.       Experiments were conducted to determine something about micro blade core reduction.

Clay brought in some old Flintknapper's  Exchange magazines for my review and research. I was amazed at how masterful the knappers in the  publications were. I had seen  Crabtree films, but other than that had been working in a vacuum.  Clay had attended some of the early knap-in and was acquainted with some of the leading knappers of the day. The cool thing about the FE is it had the name and address of the knapper next to the articles and letters.  You must remember that this is way before computers made it so easy to contact each other. I had been speaking with Clay about holding knap in at NARC, I had never even heard of a knap in before that day. Clay was all for it and wrote a letter to Dr. Mortanson, head of the Anthropology department. We soon got the go ahead and
I used the knapper addresses in FE and invited every knapper in there. A week or so later  the letters starting coming back, "address unknown deliverer" , I suppose knappers move around a lot. A week later however, the letters started comingback with responses.  Most were to far away to attend, but
several California knappers responded, I  was elated.  Clay said, "hummmmm got some of duh big boys responding".
The event went well with much knapping, experimenting and planning. What came out of the NARC knap-in was: 1. Flintknapping Digest   2. Wrightwood Knap-in  3.   Outlaw Ranch Knap-in 4. California Flintknapping Rendezvous.

NARC 1983
NARC 1983
NARC 1983
NARC 1983
NARC 1983

Clay Allen Singer Obituary: View Clay Singer's Obituary by San Luis Obispo Tribune

Clay Allen Singer, beloved son, brother, husband, father and friend died after a brief illness Wednesday, March 13. 2013, at a local hospital. Clay was born in March 1944 to Manny and Bert Singer. He grew up in Reseda, Calif., and went to college at UC Riverside. He met the love of his life, Lynne Francis, while at Riverside. They were married in 1965 and took turns putting each other through college. Clay managed Evan's Hardware in Santa Monica, Calif., while Lynne earned her teaching credential at UCLA. He earned his BA in 1970 and his master's degree in Anthropology in 1975. Clay was a teacher at Cal State Northridge from 1979 through 1982. He started his own consulting company to do EIRs (Environmental Impact Reports) in 1979. He worked as his own boss until shortly before he died. After having beat lung cancer in 1989, Clay moved the family from Santa Monica to Cambria. He wanted to live where the air was clean and the pace was slower. Clay was a scientist, who specialized in stone tools (lithics) - the manufacturing and the use of such tools. He worked in California, Idaho, France, Peru and Mexico. As an archaeologist, he worked with the Native Americans, whose ancestors walked the earth Clay was digging up. He made very special friends among the Chumash and the Salinans. Clay was kind, funny and generous with his time and his knowledge. He volunteered for the SLO Civil Grand Jury in 2011 and 2012, NCAC, Camp Ocean Pines and other local organizations. He also served as a Senior Judge for the annual California State Science Fair from 1990 to 2008. He really enjoyed meeting with high school students and discussing their science projects. He especially loved to cook and had an extensive cookbook collection. Clay is survived by his wife of 48 years, Lynne; daughter, Erin; sister, Lili; and many more family members. Clay was much loved and is dearly missed. A celebration of life has been held.




Crabtree was featured in many archaeological films in his day, many
were shown around the world in class rooms from elementary school to
doctoral classes. These films influence many up and coming

The film "Blades and Pressure Flaking" (1969) won best
anthropology film at the 1970 American Film Festival.

In 1972, the Idaho Museum of Natural History received a grant from
the National Science Foundation for the production of several 16mm
films featuring the legendary flintknapper. Just a few years ago
these films were dubbed onto VHS video tape and made available to the
public through Idaho Museum Publications. Though faded somewhat, this
footage still maintains its detail and shows Don Crabtree at his
best. In the Shadow of Man , Don is shown quarrying obsidian at Glass
Buttes in Oregon. The Flintworker discusses the basics of
flintknapping, stone tools are made using simple percussion
techniques, and the Hertzian cone theory is introduced. Ancient
Projectile Points covers the making of bifacial points. The hunter's
Edge covers prismatic blade making. The Alchemy of Time concerns heat
treating, and the manufacture of Clovis, Folsom and Cumberland

Been real busy the last couple of weeks – first the Goldendale Knap-in, then a two day trip to Glass Buttes to show one of our newer knappers, Valli Eichstedt, the area.  Then to the Tri-Cities Knap-in.  Since I got back home I’ve been trying to update the PSK website with the latest reports.  In addition to the three events above, Joe Higgins and I, along with a couple of other PSK knappers, gave a demo and knapping lessons to the Bellevue College Anthropology Club (May 6th).  The PSK also had the Montana Spring (Elk River) Knap-in in Livingston, MT.  Reports for all of these events are or will be on the website soon.

I’ve also been adding member art galleries, including one for Ken Kurfurst.  I’ve been after Ken for about three years to re-engage with the group and he finally showed up – at the Goldendale knap-in!


We’ve also had a number of new members join in the last couple of weeks –both noobie knappers as well as several experienced knappers.  Puts us well over 400 active members.  They just keep coming!

My wife and I are gearing up to attend the 3rd Annual Bitterroot Valley Knap-in, June 20th – 25th.  It is one of my wife’s favorite events  and she doesn’t flintknap!



2013 Schedule of Upcoming PSK Knap-ins and other PSK  Attended Events




PSK Knap-ins 

It's true.  There are several of us that are working on a Western Region Knap-in (everyone will be invited).  Myself, Bo Earls (Utah Valley Flintknappers), Ray Harwood and Gary Pickett (Bakerfields Knappers), Dino Labsite (California Knapper) and several others looking into dates and locations.  The target date will be in 2014 and we're considering Labor Day weekend (August 30th - Sept 1st) plus a few days.  We are looking closely at the Carson City area for several good reasons; 1) is a good destination for families, sightseeing (both in town and out), 2) close to Reno, NV and Lake Tahoe, 3) great weather, and 4) several large areas including state and federal campgrounds/parks.

The purpose of this knap-in is 'cross-pollination' - a chance to learn and share with other knappers and enjoy the community of knappers.  There is a lot of interest and if we can pull this off I expect that  quite a number of the West's best knapper will be there along with many of the rest of usTongue.

SmokinWhenever we finalize the plan I'll be putting the information on the Puget Sound Knappers website:

The three main knapping groups working in this  - Puget Sound Knappers, Utah Valley Flintknappers and the Bakerfield Knappers Association, all have pretty much the same culture which means the event will be free to all who'd like to attend.  Any costs will be covered by voluntary donations, auctions of donated items, raffles of 'Community Points, and knapping competitions.  In addition to free admission there will be free knapping instruction, free rock, loaner tools and safety equipment.  We'll also prbably have one or more 'Potluck' meals.

We'll of course make an announcement here on PaleoPlanet.


(see below for other PSK attended events!)


*NEW Montana Spring Knap-in , Livingston, MT May 18th & 19th 2013 Hosts Ray Alt and George Bryce


Cabelas Lacey Store Knap-in, Lacy, WA - January 12th - 13th, 2013, Coordinator Mick Hill


Winter Break/Cabin Fever Knap-in, Granite Falls, WA - January 26, 2013 , hosted by Dave Pelhing


Cabelas Springfield, OR Knap-in, Springfield, OR - March 16th, hosted by Henry Payne


Glass Buttes Knap-in, Glass Buttes, OR, March 23rd - 31st, Facilities provided by Rocky Male


11th Annual Thomas Hollow Knap-in, Goldendale, WA, May 17th - 19th, hosted by Ed and Loretta Thomas


8th Annual North Umpqua/Illahee Flats Knap-in, Illahee Flats, OR, May 25th - June 2nd - Hosts Brad Baughman and Jim Hopper


2nd Annual Tri-Cities Memorial Day Knap-in, Richland, WA, May 25th - 27th, hosted by Greg Greger


3rd Annual Bitterroot Valley Knap-in, Bitterroot Valley, MT, June 20 - 25th , hosted by Richard and Joan Urata


Ft. Knapadonia Knap-in, Oak Harbor, WA, August 19th - 25th, hosted by Joe and Sunny Higgins


1st Annual Sasquatch Knap-in, Sammamish, WA, August 31st - September 2nd, hosted by Jim and Beverly Keffer


2nd Annual North Columbia Knap-in, Kettle Falls, WA, October 10th - 12th, hosted by Patrick Farneman


3rd Annual Kittitas Valley Knap-in, Ellensburg, WA, October (dates TBD), hosted by Jim Baugh and Mike Tari


17th Annual TurkeyFest Knap-in, Millersylvania State Park, WA, November 2nd & 3rd, hosted by Mick and Holly Hill


Other Events - not PSK hosted events

Sweden Knap-in, June 8th & 9th, 2013 - Ådalsvägen 18 246 35 Löddeköpinge, Sweden
 3rd Annual Yosemite Knap-in, Yosemite National Park, CA, August 3rd & 4th - hosted by Ben Cunningham.
55th Annual Clallam County Gem and Mineral Society's Rock Show, Port Angeles, WA, October 5th & 6th, hosted by Tom Ellison
 Bonney Lake Rock Show (May 31st - June 2nd from 10 am - 5 pm all three days)
 Lake City Rock Show (TBD)
Cabelas - Lacy Store
 Canceled Cabelas Tulalip Store Spring Great Outdoors Event (and Knap-in) Tulalip, WA - March 16th and 17th

Pagan Gathering (TBD)
Oak Harbor Rock Show (TBD)
Quilcene Antler Show (TBD)
Bakersfield Monthly Knap-In, Monthly, Bakersfield, California, hosted by Gary Pickett and Ray Harwood



The timing of the Fort Knapadonia and Sammamish Knap-ins has been move up one week.  The new schedule is as follows:


Fort Knapadonia Knap-in:  Monday August 12th – Sunday August 18th (knappers may come early – Saturday/Sunday) and stay later

Sammamish Knap-in:  Friday August 23rd  – Sunday August 25th


Those who are planning to attend both knap-in are welcomed to stay at Fort Knapadonia and enjoy the fishing and other amenities of Whidbey Island.




James C. Keffer aka ‘Reefer’

Proud Member of the Puget Sound Knappers Association

Chief – PSK Clan of the Ooga Booga Tribe OogaBooga

Publisher – SPALLS, Official Newsletter of the PSK

CODE OF ETHICS: The Puget Sound Knappers will not condone, encourage or sanction the following activities: (PURPOSE: To serve as a platform from which to promote and practice knapping basics and skills.)
 1. The sale of prehistoric artifacts.
 2. Alteration of prehistoric sites.
 3. Sale of modern replicas as authentic prehistoric artifacts.
 4. The sale of modern replicas which do not clearly display permanent marks to distinguish the replicas as modern.
 5. The leaving of a knapping area without policing the debitage, dating and burying it with coins, cans, etc.
 6. Digging or collecting artifacts in a known prehistoric site.
PSK UPDATE: Recreational Rock Collecting on Public Land in Washington – UPDATE
 Just a brief recap of the efforts of the Puget Sound Knappers (PSK) and the Washington State Mineral Council (WSMC - rock hound clubs) to remove the prohibition
 on recreational rock collecting on State Public Lands.  Our efforts to get our legislator involved in our efforts met with some success. Rep. Barbara Bailey of Whidbey Island (thank you Whidbey Island Gem Club and
 Knapadonia members), sponsored a bill, HB2400, that would have allowed recreational rock collecting on State lands along the same lines as the Federal BLM laws (see h  tp://  With six co-sponsors (three of both political parties), it appeared that we had a chance to effect some change. However, the Washington State Department of Fish and
 Wildlife (WDFW) is adamantly opposed to ANY recreational rock collecting on ‘their’ land. The Washington State Department of Natural Resources (WDNR) also expressed
 some concern but would not rule out some accommodation. We now expect the bill to fail and have recommended that it be pulled.  Following a hearing with the House Committee on Agriculture & Natural Resources,
 members of the WSMC and PSK (me) were invited to meet with representatives of the WDNR to see if we could work out a way to allow recreational rock collecting on WDNR land. The first meeting took place on Olympia at the offices of the WDNR on Monday,  March 13, 2012. The meeting was, in our opinion, encouraging. The WDNR feels that they may be able to accommodate recreational rock collecting – with reasonable limits.
 We discussed several options and agreed to meet again on a few weeks. The PSK and WSMC will offer a new proposal for recreational rock collecting – specific annual limits, site restoration policies, etc.
 We are cautiously optimistic. We have one major thing in our favor – State Law says that WDNR land would be open to ‘multiple use’ recreation as long as it doesn’t conflict with the primary purpose of DNR manage
More later. 
Sincerely, James  C. Keffer aka ‘Reefer’ 
Proud Member of the Puget Sound Knappers Association
Chief – PSK Clan of the Ooga Booga Tribe OogaBooga
Webmaster –
Publisher – SPALLS, Official Newsletter of the PSK

Puget Sound Knapper of the Year - Michael 'Mick' Hill' !
On behalf of the Puget Sound Knappers Council of Elders, Michael ‘Mick’ Hill was awarded the First Annual Puget Sound Knapper of the Year Award for outstanding contributions to the PSK Community of Knappers!  Signing for the Council was Ooga Booga Chief Reefer (aka James C. Keffer).
Mick Hill started flintknapping in 1969 and joined the Puget Sound Knappers in the early 1990’s. He epitomizes the spirit of the Puget Sound Knappers – willing to help wherever, whenever and at whatever is needed to support our community of knappers. Mick, and his wife Holly, have hosted 16 consecutive annual Knap-ins. He has demonstrated flintknapping to countless groups and individuals; scouts, Pagans, rock hounds, strangers, friends, neighbors and anyone else who showed the slightest interest.   He’s taught dozens of noobies and been responsible for recruiting many of our new members by his enthusiastic promoting of this ancient art.
In 2012 Mick went Above and Beyond the Call of Duty! Not only did Mick attend and help out at the majority
of the PSK knap-ins in 2012 (as well as hosting one himself), he taught and demonstrated flintknapping at  all the knap-ins he attended as well as several other events including the Cabelas Lacey Store ‘Mini’ Knap-in and Pagan Gathering in Puyallup, WA.   Even a brief look at the various 2012 knap-ins
and one realizes how dedicated Mick is to helping others.
It was at these two events where Mick faced his greatest challenge as a flintknapper. While demonstrating and teaching knapping at Cabelas in January, a group of sightless people stopped by. vOne of these individuals, Marty Cartwright, wanted to try her hand at flintknapping. Undaunted by her inability to see, Mick rose to the task and with an hour or so Marty produced her first point!
Just a few weeks later Mick was invited by the local Pagans to demonstrate flintknapping and their annual ‘Gathering’. While there who should show up – Marty and one of her blind friends. Mick gave them both instruction on flintknapping with result similar to those at Cabelas. Mick even gave them lessons on how to use an Atlatl.   With a cell phone ringtone as a target (phone was protected by a block of Styrofoam), Mick was able to teach them to use the atlatl to throw a dart at the sound of the ringtone!
Mick has certainly a high standard for future PSK Knapper of the Year!



PSK Knapper of the Year Award

Mick and his Flintknapping Tool for the Blind - a combination walking stick for the blind and fully functional, 5 foot long, copper-tipped Ishi Stick.
Presented at the 2012 Glass Buttes Knap-in

<br />
<strong><br /><span style="color: purple; font-size: x-large;"><em>FLINTKNAPPING AT McKitrick</em></span></strong><br />
<br />
<br />
McKitrick knap-in November. Gary Pickett Host. 661-444-6163 (phone) <br />
<strong></strong><br />
“Gary is an excellent teacher. He has the gift of teaching and has a lot of patience with us,” said Jim Boatman, 61, of Tehachapi.<br />
Pickett’s interest in flintknapping came more than 20 years ago when he began finding old arrowheads in the creeks of southern Missouri where he grew up. He was fascinated by the arrowheads and thought he could make them himself.<br />
“I just started beating two rocks together,” said Pickett, 44, who moved to Bakersfield in 1997. <br />
It was five years of trial and error before he made much progress, but moving to Bakersfield and meeting Harwood through a flintknapping Web site helped both of them progress faster. They decided to meet every month in Bakersfield and once a year in McKittrick, which is several miles to the southwest of Bakersfield,&nbsp;and work on rocks, but didn’t expect for the small group to grow like it did.<br />
“I’m pleased with the progress and the people it’s brought,” said Pickett.<br />
Every meeting brings folks from all over the state — Inglewood, Ridgecrest and Sacramento — and even from out of state. One man visiting California from Louisiana heard about the group and came out for a visit.<br />
&nbsp; McKittrick was an old tar seep and flint mine for the Native Americans in the area.&nbsp;Older locals recall seeing Indians in the area collecting material. &nbsp;The flint is a tan material that is usually a bit rough. You can heat it but it does have the danger of mercury in it. The big danger of McKittrick is the deadly Valley Fever spore that can get into your lungs while digging in the fine dust for flint.&nbsp;&nbsp;The best material is a gray material found in the near by road cuts. The concrete cortex removed, this material is quite nice, but more and more rare every year. &nbsp;Heat treating helps the material a lot, but it contains mercury so one must take great care in the kiln process. No one &nbsp;digs in the aboriginal flint mines, as they are an archaeological site and also very dangerous, about to collapse at any time.<br />
Some very nice artifacts, and new knapping art, have been knapped out of this material.<br />
McKitrick knap-in November. Gary Pickett Host. 661-444-6163 (phone) 
“Gary is an excellent teacher. He has the gift of teaching and has a lot of patience with us,” said Jim Boatman, 61, of Tehachapi.<br />
Pickett’s interest in flintknapping came more than 20 years ago when he began finding old arrowheads in the creeks of southern Missouri where he grew up. He was fascinated by the arrowheads and thought he could make them himself.<br />
“I just started beating two rocks together,” said Pickett, 44, who moved to Bakersfield in 1997. <br />
It was five years of trial and error before he made much progress, but moving to Bakersfield and meeting Harwood through a flintknapping Web site helped both of them progress faster. They decided to meet every month in Bakersfield and once a year in McKittrick, which is several miles to the southwest of Bakersfield,&nbsp;and work on rocks, but didn’t expect for the small group to grow like it did.<br />
“I’m pleased with the progress and the people it’s brought,” said Pickett.<br />
Every meeting brings folks from all over the state — Inglewood, Ridgecrest and Sacramento — and even from out of state. One man visiting California from Louisiana heard about the group and came out for a visit
  McKittrick was an old tar seep and flint mine for the Native Americans in the area.&nbsp;Older locals recall seeing Indians in the area collecting material. The flint is a tan material that is usually a bit rough. You can heat it but it does have the danger of mercury in it. The big danger of McKittrick is the deadly Valley Fever spore that can get into your lungs while digging in the fine dust for flint. The best material is a gray material found in the near by road cuts. The concrete cortex removed, this material is quite nice, but more and more rare every year. &nbsp;Heat treating helps the material a lot, but it contains mercury so one must take great care in the kiln process. No one digs in the aboriginal flint mines, as they are an archaeological site and also very dangerous, about to collapse at any time
Some very nice artifacts, and new knapping art, have been knapped out of this material


McKitrick knap-in November. Gary Pickett Host. 661-444-6163 (phone)

“Gary is an excellent teacher. He has the gift of teaching and has a lot of patience with us,” said Jim Boatman, 61, of Tehachapi.
Pickett’s interest in flintknapping came more than 20 years ago when he began finding old arrowheads in the creeks of southern Missouri where he grew up. He was fascinated by the arrowheads and thought he could make them himself.
“I just started beating two rocks together,” said Pickett, 44, who moved to Bakersfield in 1997.
It was five years of trial and error before he made much progress, but moving to Bakersfield and meeting Harwood through a flintknapping Web site helped both of them progress faster. They decided to meet every month in Bakersfield and once a year in McKittrick, which is several miles to the southwest of Bakersfield, and work on rocks, but didn’t expect for the small group to grow like it did.

“I’m pleased with the progress and the people it’s brought,” said Pickett.
Every meeting brings folks from all over the state — Inglewood, Ridgecrest and Sacramento — and even from out of state. One man visiting California from Louisiana heard about the group and came out for a visit.
  McKittrick was an old tar seep and flint mine for the Native Americans in the area. Older locals recall seeing Indians in the area collecting material.  The flint is a tan material that is usually a bit rough. You can heat it but it does have the danger of mercury in it. The big danger of McKittrick is the deadly Valley Fever spore that can get into your lungs while digging in the fine dust for flint.  The best material is a gray material found in the near by road cuts. The concrete cortex removed, this material is quite nice, but more and more rare every year.  Heat treating helps the material a lot, but it contains mercury so one must take great care in the kiln process. No one  digs in the aboriginal flint mines, as they are an archaeological site and also very dangerous, about to collapse at any time.
Some very nice artifacts, and new knapping art, have been knapped out of this material.






dacite by JimWinn



It began innocently enough, like most casual obsessions. Annie Moore dropped a penny into an empty coffee can. Clink.
And then another. Clink. And soon enough, many, many more. Mrs. Moore began scouring parking lots for lost pennies. Clink, clink, clink. She filled several cans.
Like many penny hoarders, she was never sure what to do with all of them — until she and her husband bought a roadside bar and cafe in this speck of a town in California oil country near Bakersfield. Why not, she asked her husband, Mike, festoon the bar with the pennies? And he dutifully obliged the crazy idea, using regular Elmer’s glue to affix them from one end of the bar to another.
It was his task to complete the job, penny by painstaking penny, six years of gluing, gluing and gluing.

Now, one million pennies later — from Annie’s cans, customers with loose change and not a few trips to the bank for exchanges — Mike & Annie’s Penny Bar is a sight to behold. The pennies, like a swarm of copper ants, cover nearly every surface: the floor, the walls, even the sides of the pool table.
Mr. Moore did not exactly count out one million pennies, but after calculating 304 pennies per square foot of surface area, he figures it is pretty close. It’s 200,000 on the floor alone.
The establishment’s pennies surely lure some, but it is also the only restaurant to speak of for the growing number of energy workers in this part of Kern County, which locals have nicknamed West Texas for all the oil derricks and natural-gas plants.

McKittrick is located at 35°18′20″N 119°37′21″W.[2] It is at the junction of State Routes 33 and 58. According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 2.6 square miles (6.7 km2), all of it land. The town is in the center of a large oil-producing region in western Kern County. Along State Route 33 to the south of the town is the Midway-Sunset Oil Field, the second-largest oil field in the contiguous United States; within the town itself, as well as to the west is the McKittrick Field; to the northwest is the huge Cymric Field; and along Highway 33 beyond Cymric is the large South Belridge Oil Field, run by Aera Energy LLC. East of McKittrick is Occidental Petroleum's Elk Hills Field, formerly the U.S. Naval Petroleum Reserve.[4] The McKittrick Tar Pits, which are similar to the more famous La Brea Tar Pits in Los Angeles, contain an assemblage of bones of ice age mammals. They are a series of surface seeps from the underlying McKittrick Oil Field. [edit] History The first post office at McKittrick opened in 1910.[3] The name honors Capt. William McKittrick, local landowner and rancher.[3] McKittrick incorporated in 1911.[3]


Stone Culture

 Stone Culture has been recognized with many awards and honors. Keith Hull, our original founder, is known as one of the greatest living Precision Flint Knappers in the world today. He has been centerfold featured in several flint knapping magazines, and has spoken on many circuits throughout the United States. His knives are collected around the world, and especially coveted in Europe.

 Stone Culture is comprised of a large and diverisfied group of international and domestic flint knappers and enthusiasts.

On our website you'll find fascinating information on stone age cultures, many World Renown Artists, purchasing authentic Stone Culture Items, and even buy tools and supplies to make your own items!

We are also on facebook. Please feel free to add us to your friends list and meet many of our knappers in person! We welcome new members, and we'd love to see some of your work! Especially if it's made with one of our preforms or tools! 

We Accept:
 Cashiers Cheque
 Money Order
 Personal Checks (Allow 10 days to clear)

Our Current ebay Specials:

Our ebay Store

Click the photo to be taken to our ebay store!

"Our Ebay Auctions" Shipped via US Priority Mail


World Renown Artisan Keith Hull of Washington State! Keith's works are highly sought after, and collected  throughout the international art world. His work is on display in many galleries and museums throughout the USA, Europe, Asia, and Australia.

    The sophistication of his work is unbelievably unique. His flake lines are uniform and exact, giving his pieces an authentic and traditional look and feel. His work rivals that of the late Grey Ghost, and has recently been compared to the greatest knappers of the world by the American Paleontologist Society.

Recipient of much praise and many coveted awards, Keith has been instrumental in establishing guidelines and regulations that govern the sales of Native American artifacts. The original founder of Stone Culture, he has sought to enforce integrity in representation of arrowheads and other stone blades. In 2003, Stone Culture so impressed the executives of eBay, that new regulations were formed to prevent the sale of fake artifacts on eBay, and preserve the rights of Native American Cultures. 

We at Stone Culture have been selling Obsidian knives, War-hawks, spears, arrows, and other tools internationally since 1994. Keith Hull is recognized by many in the flint knapping circles as being the best Flat Knapper alive today. He has toured circuits, and won numerous awards around North America and Internationally as well. Lightfoot is an Apache and Long standing member of Stone Culture. His peyote stitch is wrought with beautifully magical designs. Each piece is hand strung one bead at a time, with only the best quality glass and bone beads. Our items are all museum quality, and are sold all over the world to many different tribes in need an authentic item. All of our points sold are as Modern Points. They have been made by one of our many members as listed in the description, and are not historical artifacts. They have all been made in the traditional fashions of Native Americans flint knappers


I try to treat all my customers like they are the most important ones I have. I only sell rock that I would Knapp myself, and I high grade everything. Once in a while a bad one will slip by me, and if you get one, just let me know. I'll replace anything that turns out to have a crack in it. The only thing that I ask from my customers is that they share photos with me of their work.


Keith Hull: Port Orchard, Washington




Tehachapi News: 

Flintknapping: The ancient art of making tools from stone

Related Photos

Assorted flakes, hammerstones, antler tools and leather used by class participants.

Examples of Gary Pickett’s considerable talent in the ancient art of flintknapping.

Gary Pickett uses a hammerstone to remove a useable piece from an obsidian cåore.

Archeologist Jo Matranga works on her projectile point using a deer antler pressure tool and piece of leather to protect her hand.

Archeologist Lucy Harrington checks out an obsidian point she made recently at Gary Pickett’s class at the Tehachapi Museum.
One of humanity’s oldest skills was on display at the Tehachapi
Museum recently when a group of 18 students gathered to learn
the ancient art of flintknapping from expert craftsman Gary Pickett of Bakersfield.
Flintknapping is the term used to describe the manufacture of stone implements such as arrowheads, spearpoints, knives and other tools from rocks, typically using just a hammerstone and a deer antler.
Although the name suggests flint is used, a variety of raw material besides flint can be used in flintknapping, including agate, obsidian, chert and other stones. Gary provided obsidian, chert and rhyolite to his students.
Gary began to attempt flintknapping while living in Missouri 24 years ago, but it wasn’t until he moved to California 14 years ago that his talent really grew refined. He became a master flintknapper and he now hosts “knap-ins” on the first Sunday of every month at Hart Memorial Park near Bakersfield. Examples of his work, including finely-crafted projectile points and other objects, are proof of his talent.
Flintknappers begin, as stone toolmakers have from time immemorial, with some suitable rock. These tend to be stones with a cryptocrystalline structure, which means that the crystals are so fine that they are microscopic and these dense rocks can develop very sharp edges when fractured. Indian people of the Tehachapi Mountains tended to use agate, chert, obsidian, jasper and other materials when crafting projectile points and knives.
Very hard, dense stones, such as rounded cobbles from a streambed, are often used as a hammer to break off smaller, promising chunks of rocks that can be made into something useful. Once smaller pieces have been knocked off the larger core, flintknappers select among these flakes to find some promising pieces. These are then worked into arrowheads, knives or other items through the use of pressure flaking, in which the point of an antler is placed against the stone and pressure is applied to pop off flakes and thin pieces.
As Gary patiently worked with each student, all of whom had some success in fashioning points or cutting tools, it became clear the Gary is a totally engaged teacher. “I began teaching flintknapping to other people about 12 years ago, and it was the greatest thing I ever did,” Gary told me. “To teach something to others, you need to fully understand it yourself, so the classes made my own mind go deeper, and it took my own flintknapping to a new level.”
Using a piece of leather on their leg or in their hand for protection, students would hold a small piece of glass-like stone, place the point of a deer antler against the rock and apply pressure until a small piece flaked off.
“The energy travels through the stone predictably in rocks with a cryptocrystalline structure,” Gary explained. “If you’re careful, and have a little luck you can get excellent results. I let the rock tell me what it’s going to be – I want to maximize the rock’s potential and not waste the resource.”
Five or six of the students in Gary’s Tehachapi Museum class were archeologists, looking to better understand the processes necessary to create the projectile points and other stone tools that they regularly discover as part of their job. The flintknapping class was another popular and well-received event organized by the energetic Gale Grasse Sprague, herself an archeologist who is one of the leading forces behind the Tehachapi Heritage League’s busy schedule this year.
There will be another flintknapping class offered on September 3 from 10 to 4 p.m. at the Tehachapi Museum. This will be a more detailed, advanced class in which Gary will provide some high-quality obsidian to students, and the cost is $40. For reservations, visit or call the Tehachapi Museum at 822-8152.
Have a good week.

For all the close entry fans out there here is an awesome contestant in this years "Western Lithics World Notch Championship"

Dennard, Arkansas's   Anthony Raimondi



2013 contest, time extension do to illness.
winning points from past years.

Ray Harwood  started flintknapping when he was about nine years of age, Ray's father, Ted Harwood (Marauder Pilot) was part Apache and did a lot of hunting and other out door skills, Ted taught Ray to flintknap. They used to go to Monache Meadows very often. The arrowheads in Monache were a great inspiration to Ray's knapping. Ray has written hundreds of articles and books on flintknapping related topics. Ray was the first to create and market a flintknapping video, Ray Founded, edited and published "Flintknapping Digest" in 1983-1992 when it was given to Val Waldorf and it became "Chips". Ray Hosted the C.S.U.N. Knap-in in 1983 and co-founded the Wrightwood Knap in that same year with Alton Safford, this knap-in went of for decades. Ray helped found the Bakersfield Knap with Gary Picket, the longest running monthly knap-in in the United States. Ray has dune hundreds of demonstrations and lithic experiments, including stone tool bison butchering,stone tool replication and usage. BA in Anthropology/archaeology CSUN 1984 (Clay Singer, professor).US Army, Archaeologist -Northridge Archaeological Research Canter, Western Lithics World Flintknapping Notching Champion runner up 5 years in a row, one year World Champion "King Notcher" (Ishi notching), world's largest pressure flaked "spear point" 56 inches long. Other interests: Father of 2 sons, Wilderness survival, Karate, Hiking, Horse back riding, Camping, Squatching, Land Rover 4 x 4, Scuba Diver, Hunting, Fishing, Banjo and Guitar playing, . 






     Oh how those hammer stone knappers must have hollered when the antler billets started being used!  In that same light the Genesee Valley Flintknappers Association has joined the 20th century (don’t want to JUMP into the present!) 
     Vendors for the 2013 Stone Tool Craftsman Show may now pre-register, select their 20x20 vendor site, and pay on line!  Pre-register as soon as possible for the best chance to reserve your preferred vendor site. There is space enough for all, so register now and get ready for the 2013 Stone Tool Craftsman Show.
    Living History participants and campers can also pre-register online for the event.  All participants can pre-register by visiting:
    Or navigate to the advance registration page from the GVFKA home page
Any questions you can email me directly.
President Dana S. Klein, GVFKA

 Aug 23- 25 Letchworth State Park Stone Tool Show

Aug 30 - Sept 1 Flint Ridge Ohio Knap-in

Dates: Aug. 23-26, 2013

Route Info: (we are willing to make adjustments according to our customer's needs) From Joplin, Missouri to Castile, New York
Aug. - Genesee Valley Stone Tool Show, NY

Gary Parton now holds a JOMO type Knap-In
on the second Sunday of every month.
Location is about an hour east of us in
Blue Eye, MO.
Email Gary at
for more information.


BY Ray....
B.F.R.O. sittings indicate this may be Jim Conacher of Jasper, Ohio?? ( AKA CROMMMMM!)

John Kiernan's work



B.F.R.O. sittings indicate this may be Jim Conacher of Jasper, Ohio?? ( AKA CROMMMMM!)

JIM CONACHE, of  Jasper, ohio  on the front page of last months Flintknapping Magazine, has been hard at work. Jim primarily quarries and process the awesomeness that is Flint Ridge Flint!
He knaps the material into amazingly well done knapping art. Here is some of Jim's work from this month.

Jasper is an unincorporated community in eastern Newton Township, Pike County, Ohio, United States. Although it is unincorporated, it has a post office, with the ZIP code of 45642. It lies at the intersection of State Routes 32, 104, and 124 along the banks of the Scioto River.

"My products are in Europe. I have arrowheads in super-nice modern collections. I have people that use my bows and arrows to hunt. Now I go to a variety of Knap-ins in multiple states but always return home to Flint Ridge."

Another Carver and knapper team up for this amazing knife!!!!I love everything about this knife — with Jim Conacher and Arawak Muñiz at Stones-N-bones...where it "ALL" began!


 A PIRATE SABRE! 14.5 Inches of Rainbow Obsidian!   

Rick Tollett, OF

Prairie Grove, Arkansas .

 Prairie Grove is a city in Washington County, Arkansas, United States. The population was 2,540 at the 2000 census. It is part of the FayettevilleSpringdaleRogers, AR-MO Metropolitan Statistical Area. Located here is the Prairie Grove Battlefield State Park. The park spans a large amount of land and contains a visitor center, museum, several monuments, a driving tour and a collection of 

period buildings and homes you can tour.

Photo: got-r done

 Dennis Kerns
- 1838 Sulphur Creek Road -
Columbia, Ky.  42728. Phone
number is 270-403-7599 CELL.
Email me at


507-368-9577 EXT.2
GREENFIELD, MODON  417-234-0666
CANTON, KSRANDY CLARK   620-899-3946
Missouri Trading Co. with Spear and

Ray, Waldorf didn’t want to do Chips anymore, I think the subscriptions were in decline.

Not sure exactly. We considered it but cannot take on another thing right now.

I’m building new warehouse/home combo on some creek property I’ve had for a while.

Would love to get it done this year, it’s pretty big – red iron metal building.

The main building is up now – just finishing up a few little things like ice guards, etc.

Next, the interior. Have to draw up the plans and get quotes, argue, make decisions, you know the drill…


Email best. Or FAX. 866-224-4628.

OR email you phone number and I will call you later when I am in a better reception area.

There is very poor reception where I’m at now – pain. New building will be MUCH BETTER in this area, too.


Diana Benson



Bruce Hudson

Bruce Hudson is a self taught Flint Knapper living in Louisville,Kentucky. Interested in our primitive past and Native American history since a youngster, He began teaching himself the art of flint knapping with raw Kentucky creek chert abo style in the backwoods of Kentucky back in 93.
Enjoys carving and antler knapping


The Flint Ridge Formation

By Luke Sattler



ear the town of Hopewell, Ohio is the extraordinary geological feature known as Flint Ridge, a deposit of flint that is about three miles wide and nine miles long and trends from east to west. The Flint Ridge Formation ranges between two and 10 feet thick. Flint Ridge Flint is prized among flint knappers—both in the  distant past and the present—for its rich and vibrant colors and how easily it knaps.


Text Box: Flint Ridge Flint showing its range of colors.  Image courtesy of Porcupine Partners.
Around 10,000 years ago, Native Americans mined the flint for stone tools. Native American tribes that were thought to be in the area around 10,000 years ago were the Adena and the Hopewell. These two tribes likely mined in the Flint Ridge area. The flint location was so valuable that the formation was considered a neutral zone—a place of peace, where the two different tribes would put their weapons aside and could gather flint without the constant threat of violence. The pits—where they mined flint for the purpose of knapping—are still visible today. 


Text Box: Fossil organisms like this one form the silica gel that eventually forms the flint. This is a scanning electron microscope image. Note measurement bar of 1 micron in the left corner. Image courtesy of the Porcupine Partners.Flint is formed from dissolved, silica-rich particles of ancient sponges and plankton that died and fell to the bottom of the sea. When this material accumulated it formed a silica gel and filled cavities found naturally on the sea floor. While in these cavities, this silica-rich gel hardened into a mass eventually forming flint. Sometimes the flint will form around the shells of other organisms; when this happens the fossil will be inside or encased by the flint.


Flint Ridge Flint, like many other different kinds of flint, needs to be heat treated or cooked to be easily knapped. Heat causes the molecules in the flint to expand and become more brittlemaking it easier to flake. The Native Americans would heat the flint by burying it under their fire pits and build fires on top of the buried flint. While the fire burns the flint cooks, making it brittle and easier to knap. Today knappers also use fire pits. Modern knappers may also use kilns or turkey roasters that are more cost effective than a kiln. Both still do the same job but are faster and better controlled than a fire.


Flint Ridge Flint comes in a variety of colors, ranging from vibrant blues to teal, red, turquoise, peach, tan and grey. Different minerals in the surrounding rock cause the flint to form different colors. For instance, iron-rich minerals cause red colors while copper creates blue and teal colors. Flint Ridge Flint is also prized for its beauty as cutting material in the lapidary world. Some Flint Ridge Flint contains small cavities of quartz crystals, which make an attractive display on a knapped point or a cabochon.

Here are some examples of Flint Ridge Flint knapped by  knappers from around the country.
Flint Ridge Bird Knapped by Chris Nicholas. He lives in Irondequoit NY.

Chris has been knapping for almost 12 years.


Flint Ridge Corner Tang Knife. Knapped by James Shipley. James lives near Casper WY. He has been knapping for 2 years.


Large Notched and Reaper Point. Knapped by Jake Webster. Jake has been knapping for 12 years. He lives in New Haven IN.

Flint Ridge Point. Knapped by Ed Mosher. Ed lives in Monticello IN. he has been knapping for 23 years


 Double eagle stone knife with... — with Jim Conacher and Arawak Muñiz.

REMINDER 4th Annual Fort Crevecoeur Knap-In July 12-14, (come the 11th if you want!) 2013Fort Crevecoeur 301 Lawnridge Creve Coeur, IL 61610 (near Peoria) Last years event was great, blistering hot, but due to the wonderful people that attended we had a great time. Heck, Perry even got on TV!! There will be food and drinks available. We will also have a drawing for donated items. All native American and Abo crafts welcome. Knapping supply vendors very welcome. Camping and food vendors will be available. Mark McDaniel (309) 265-8053 , Gary Goodrich (309) 202-4302, Ted Snider 309 338-6933


Aug. - Flint Ridge Knap-In, OH
Dates: Aug. 30 to Sept. 1, 2013

Route Info: (we are willing to make adjustments according to our customer's needs) From Castile, NY to Newark, Ohio

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