Opinel is an old knife making company based in Savoie France. And they have been making these knives for a very very long time. It all started with a tool maker’s apprentice that came up with a simple and clever locking mechanism that they call the “Virobloc” which is a type of “Twist Lock” or as I remember it being called many years ago, a “Barrel Lock”. Continue reading Opinel N.08
There’s not a lot to say about the Morakniv family. This one is the Companion. It’s an exceptionally simple knife with a well-shaped handle with a nice surface that lends to a good grip and feel in the hand. The blade looks like something found on a Steakhouse table. I’ve never owned a Mora before and considered them a slight step up from Dollar General Cutlery. Continue reading Mora Companion
This is one of my very favorite knives in the whole wide world. The Buck 110 is all of America, made into a folding knife. It’s NASCAR, Apple Pie, Pump Action Shotguns, and ZZ TOP all rolled in together. Continue reading Buck 110 Ecolite
Any time I’ve been looking at any knife on Amazon.com, Eafengrow knives are always popping up as recommended items. So tried to look into them and couldn’t find anything via a Google Search. Other than links back to Amazon.
Continue reading Eafengrow EF227 Folding Knife
One of the things I always have with me, is a small fixed bladed knife. Sure, I always have one or two folders with me as well… But I like having a small fixed blade on me. Here’s the three I usually rotate though, depending on what the day has planned.
Left to Right:
Benchmade’s Adamas Push Dagger.
Benchmade’s SOCP Dagger.
Ka-Bar’s Becker Necker.
Reason for these three is the light weight, small profile. I never wear them around the neck, but they do well in a Boot or on the Belt. Or other places one might hide a little knife. The SOCP though, sometimes I’ll clip it to the front of the shirt like a pen. Just easy that way, and quite fast to use.
The Necker has a nice usable shape. I use it quite often for regular cutting tasks. Cooking Prep and such. It is one of my favorite all time knives. I like the bottle opener too. Quite handy. This one has a lot of utility while the others are strictly defensive tools.
The Adamas is an interesting bit of kit. The chisel grind makes it not so useful for normal cutting tasks… but the double edge blade is wicked sharp. For it’s purpose, it is scary effective.
The SOCP is the cool guy blade. The point is like a needle. The blade… not so sharp. It’s not supposed to be. This one is all about the deep puncture, with little other utility. This is a rip cord type tool. You pull it when there is no other option. I know a lot of guys like to modify their SOCPs… but I’ve not done so yet. I may in the future though. Were I to do so… I think I’d strip the coating off it, bevel some edges, and acid etch the steel to give it some more character. Of all the three, this is the one that comes with me most often.
To me, my Carry Knife is just as important, if not more so, than my Carry Gun. Because I USE my carry knife for all kinds of things… even things in a manner not recommended by the manufacturer.
Here’s four of my favorites. More importantly, these knives are the ones that are most special to me.
I’m tired of Tantos. Once again the Tanto Rage is in full swing and all the new blades I’ve been seeing… the ones other guys are all “Look at this” all about… They are all Tantos. The Tanto design is completely over rated. While it has it’s Pro’s, I’ve found over time that the Cons are out-weighting them. I’m not going to go into a Nut’n Fancy detailed breakdown of all the points and elements. These should be apparent to you… you’re a big boy and Google is your friend.
I use my knives a lot. My “Tactical” knives – most guys keep them well oiled and unused in their “Kit”. Totally razor sharp. In case of Zombies, or a call from SECDEF requesting the use of their particular sets of skills. I’m not that guy anymore. So all my throat slitting, 4/5 rib punchers get used for other things. Like what they are designed to actually do – cut things. Not “Testing” by chopping tree limbs, bending the blade sideways or all the other “Torture” tests people do. No, I used them to cut things. Like food. My Combat Bowie? That’s become my favorite BBQ knife. I don’t care if a blade is forged by Hephaestus himself out of meteorite and the souls of fallen Samurai. It’s pulling KP over here. It’s going to open packages. It’s going to slice sheets of vinyl. It’s going to do the every day menial tasks that is of the peasant class, not the warrior class.
I’ve found that Tanto knives are cool looking, but they don’t like to really work. For the most part, much of the cutting ends up happening at the point of the blade where there should be a wide curve. Instead there is a sharp angle. This is an exaggeration of the original design and is a modern invention from fantasy. And it puts all the cutting in real world use at that point. Which will dull easily and quickly regardless of how elite the steel is. Now, I’m not talking about swords or sword length blades. I’m talking about knives. One handed, and generally under 18 inches of blade length.
I feel no sense of history or belonging with a Tanto. It’s not culturally connected to my heritage. Of course, the blade that does connect with me culturally is of little actual field use either… but I know it’s a part of my family history in early times before they came to America. These are actually good for deboning and slicing baked goods. But that’s not entirely the point either. When I pick up a Tanto, there is no connection to my past in any way. They feel hollow to me these days. There is no feeling patriotism. I have one tanto bladed knife left. It was a gift from friends… I will never part with it. All my other Tantos have been given away or just lost and I’ve not bothered searching for them.
My favorite blade, that touches on my American Heritage, and makes me feel that sense of “this belongs here”… are the Bowie Knives.
Bowies can be big and beautiful. They can be elegant and refined. They speak of our Frontier History as a razor sharp national icon. The Bowie is as American as the 1911 pistol and a Harley Davidson motorcycle. The actual history of the Bowie has some questions as to the design. The first Bowie Knife designed by Jim Bowie, carried and used famously by Jim Bowie… we don’t know what that knife looks like. Or the actual size. It was just reported to be a big freaking knife. But the modern style of what we call a Bowie fills the void of details just fine. The style is unique in a large blade, and translates well into smaller blades. It’s beautiful and it’s effective… and best yet it actually works.
Now, I’m not about high polished elegance and all that. I like working blades. Just like my guns. They need to speak of their use and capability. They need to tell you just by their appearance that they will do horrible things to you. They need to tell you to be careful with them… and that they don’t care if they have to hurt. That’s a real Bowie to me. One of my favorites that says all that is from ZOMBIE TOOLS. These guys got the Bowie just right. And added some serious DGAF attitude.
I think that’s probably the #1 thing that Tantos just don’t have. Attitude. They don’t don’t have that machismo. CHARACTER. The most interesting man in the world wouldn’t carry or use a Tanto. Most importantly… a Tanto is unfit for use in preparing and serving BBQ and spending the day Grilling.
Go get yourself a damn Bowie Knife.
I have a lot of favorite knives, but most are from only a few sources. I’m set in my ways… so mostly I like the Plain and Plain Edged versions of these knives instead of Serrated or Coated if those are options. And some are no longer in production . I also favor larger knives as a bigger blade makes work easier. The Spyderco Native is probably the smallest of the knives on this list outside of the Spikes. Why I like the Spikes so much? I’ve no idea – I just do.
Is there a knife on this list that you like too? Or is there a knife on this list that you just hate? Let me know.
Ka-Bar Becker BK9 Combat Bowie*
Ka-Bar Becker BK2 Companion*
Ka-Bar Becker BK11 Necker*
Ka-Bar “Big Brother”.
Buck Omni Hunter 12pt*
Cold Steel Recon Tanto
Cold Steel SRK
Cold Steel Trail Master
Cold Steel Marauder
Cold Steel Scottish Spike
Cold Steel Tokyo Spike
Spyderco Warrior (Formerly known as the REKAT Hobbit Warrior**)
Ontario Marine Raider
Buck 110 Paperstone*
Spyderco Native Stainless**
Cold Steel AK-47*
Cold Steel Voyager
Cold Steel Recon Clip Point
Cold Steel Vaquero Grande*
Cold Steel Espada XL G-10*
Cold Steel Talwar XL G-10*
Benchmade Rift Osbourne
Anything Designed by RMJ Tactical
** Unicorn Knife – Always wanted, never been able to snag.
*** Wish they would bring back!
So I finally made it to the Blade Show. It was fun and I saw many wonderfully crafted bits of sharp metal. I was tempted greatly to buy many of the wonderfully crafted bits of sharp metal.
A couple of the blades I really liked were from Fremont Knives in Wyoming. The one they call the Farson Blade, I found most interesting and think it would be very useful. They also have it in a hatchet style tool. Of course this is too light to be used like some camp hatchets… But damn if that wouldn’t be awesome for use as a cleaver. These would be put to great use in the Ogre’s Grilling While Armed Echo Laboratory.
Now, the coolest stuff that resonated with me, was Zombie Tools.
ZT was holding court in style in the lounge, chilling and drinking cold ones, and talking blades with whoever wanted to talk. They have a wicked Gladius type blade that I love, their axe, (which they call the Traumahawk – shit, I love their names) the cleavers… Gotta have me the Rat Bastard… Freaking everything they make is just badass to the bone. Finally meeting them face to face was the highlight.
Remember me talking about this knife… like back in the Spring? Well the order I put in for one never showed up so I did a One Click order on Amazon.com and bam. I finally have it in my ogerish paws.
The Buck 110 Folding Hunter is the lock-blade knife that legitimized folding knives for any serious use. It wasn’t the first, but it was at the time the best. Good sized clip point blade, good steel, and a solid lock that just flat out works. It was the Folder to have for years.
Now the Buck 110 is still popular among the Outdoorsmen, but the Tactical community looks askance at it. It is heavy. It is shiny. It doesn’t have a pocket clip, assisted opening mechanism, or any gadget or do-dad to make it tacticool. It’s simply a knife. And that’s what I like about it.
The Ecolite version (I got the green one – don’t be shocked) fixes two of the 110’s major complaints from the Tactical Guys. It’s not shiny and its not heavy. I do wish it had a pocket clip, but I can live without it. I mean, don’t we have enough pockets and pouches and things we can carry it in? If not, it comes with its own. It’s nylon and black and can be worn vertically or horizontally. It’s a little off the beaten path for those that want to be Contractor Cool, but it’s worth looking at. Why? I’m seeing the Buck 110 as being the edged equivalent of the 1911. It’s a pioneer and its still every bit as good now as it was back in the day. In fact, the day is far from over for both of these classics.
The 110 Ecolite is sporting handles made of what Buck is called Paperstone. It’s a strong compound material that looks handsome, and really does keep the knife light. It might, I dare say, it even makes the knife more useful, as one is going to be less prone to leave the at home and use something else. And don’t think it’s too large. That’s crap. Your cell phone is probably the size of four of these knives.
I really like the knife. Wish I had it a lot sooner.