Knife impressions/review


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Chrome
August 6, 2008, 05:16 PM
I carry a Victorinox Mini Champ, a Victorinox Alox Cadet, and some sort of larger folding knife, typically pocket clipped, for the bigger stuff. For the past 6 months, I've carried a CRKT M-16-10K EDC. It has disappeared (more on that in a bit) so I did some looking around for a new knife. My impressions on the knives I looked at are below. First, I'll start with the knife I had been using previously.

CRKT M-16-10Z EDC
https://www.shopatron.com/product/part_number=M16-10KZ/638.0
My first encounter with CRKT knives was with a M-16-14 that a friend brought home from Iraq with him. It was a special edition sold only through the PX for the troops. (To my knowledge the only difference was the color of the handles and the coating on the blade) The knife locked up super tight and was still sharp even after all the use and abuse it had taken. I loved the balance and the look of the knife. But, it was a bit too large for everyday pocket carry.

When CRKT introduced the EDC line of the M16 knives, I purchased the M-16-10Z with the Zytel handles, Auto-Lawks, and black coated tanto blade. Initial impressions were good. The familiar lock up was there, the Auto-Lawks system was nice, and it looked good. The blade was sharp and super tough. Through 6 months of use I did begin to find some fault with it.

My first gripe came from the fact it began to lose it's tight lockup. It was only side to side wiggle, so I tightened the blade a bit. This cured the lockup issue, but did make the Carson flipper much more difficult to use.

The pocket clip that was tight when I bought it began to relax on me. I bought special bits to take it off and bend it tighter, but it relaxed yet again. Several times it fell out of my pocket while I was sitting, eventually I lost it completely.

Overall Impressions
My overall impression of the knife is that it represents good value for the $20 I paid for it. Some Wal-Marts carry this knife for less than that. It is made in Tiwan if that is a detractor for some of you. The reason I didn't replace the lost knife with another one of the same is because I wanted something American this time.

After hearing many,many of you Spyderco, SOG, Benchmade, and Kershaw fans rant and rave, I decided to give them a look. Unfortunately, the only two places here that carry those brands are Wal-Mart and Dicks. Two of my least favorite places to shop.

Kershaw Vapor 1640
http://www.kershawknives.com/productdetails.php?id=94
This was the first Kershaw knife I ever handled and I was thoroughly unimpressed. First issue was the lock. When I opened the knife, I tried to close it without undoing the lock. It closed on me! Again I tried and looked closer, the lock was not fully engaging when it was opened. I then noticed the writing on the blade "China." I thought all Kershaw knives were made in the USA? The blade was razor sharp, but I just handed the knife back. Poor craftsmanship or poor QC, I don't know. Luckily, I decided to look at another Kershaw kinfe.

Kershaw Storm 1470ST.
http://www.kershawknives.com/productdetails.php?id=93
This was the second Kershaw knife I ever handled. It quickly redeemed Kershaw in my eyes. Wicked sharp blade, bank vault lockup, and it felt great. I love steel handled knives. The only issue with this one I had was the rubber/plastic grips set into the knife. In my experience, these come off after a some use. However, I found another issue with them. When it was clipped to my pocket and I reached in for my keys, the rubber scraped my knuckles. I imagine after several times a day of doing that I'd have calluses. I thought I might be able to live with it, but I kept looking anyways.

Spyderco Delica VG-10 - same as in link below with non-serrated blade
http://www.spyderco.com/catalog/details.php?product=209
Again, a knife brand didn't live up to my expectations. The black polymer handles were not metal lined. For me, this is an issue. Another problem was the pocket clip. It was "upside down" in that the knife clipped with the blade point up. If the blade was very resistant to opening, this would be acceptable. However, the blade seemed to open too easily for my taste and I feared reaching into a pocket with an open blade. The blade itself was very sharp and the knife felt solid and well balanced. I didn't see a country of origin, but I was "assured" by the guy in a blue vest it was American made. Didn't matter much as I had already decided to skip on it. I won't use this knife to judge Spyderco as a whole, but the one example has left me unimpressed.

Kershaw "Needs Work"
http://www.kershawknives.com/productdetails.php?id=385
After leaving Wal-Mart and comming to the sad realization that Dicks only had two brands of knives made in America (SOG and Kershaw, and only 5 models between two brands) I decided to look at the Kershaw "Needs Work." The guy at the counter was more than happy to take the knife out of it's blister pack for me so I could examine it. I don't understand who thought blister packs were a good way to sell knives. You never see Craftsman tools in blister packs! Anyway, this knife, finally, impressed the crap out of me.

It has the same razor sharp edge all the knives I looked at had, but this one was straight. No fancy curves, no serrations, just a straight razor sharp knife. Just the way I like my blades. The handles were polymer, but were steel lined so I was okay with that. I wish the knife handle was a 1/2 inch longer, but other than that it's perfect. The speed assist opening is VERY nice and isn't considered a switch blade by WV law. This was the knife I decided to buy. It's a bit thick and borderline too big, but it's still small enough to disappear and the clip is so tight it's hard to get it into my pocket!

I with Dick's had had SOG knives that fit the bill, unfortunately they only had the Seal Pup (fixed blade and not what I was looking for) and another smaller knife that was too small. Now that I've practically written a book, I hope someone can get some use out of this info.

Later,
Chrome...

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T.R.
August 9, 2008, 10:10 PM
COLD STEEL Master Hunter in carbon V steel is a keeper! You'll have to surf eBay to find one since production of this model ceased a couple years ago.

This large knife reminds me of the Scandinavian leuko in shape and weight.

TR

http://i26.photobucket.com/albums/c146/rushmoreman/coldsteel.jpg

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