Mora Companion: Heavy duty or Regular?


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Centurian22
June 29, 2014, 01:20 PM
Hey all! I'm looking at the Morakniv Companion, high carbon, regular (0.10" wide blade) or heavy duty (0.125" wide blade) both 4.1" long. Mostly will be used for skinning / processing deer but also will be my fire starting, emergency, woods knife as well. Thoughts?

Regular: Morakniv Companion Fixed Blade Outdoor Knife with Sandvik Carbon Steel Blade, Military Green, 4.1-Inch by Morakniv http://www.amazon.com/dp/B004TNWD40/ref=cm_sw_r_udp_awd_cPeStb08JF9GX

Heavy duty: Morakniv Companion Heavy Duty Knife with Sandvik Carbon Steel Blade, 0.125/4.1-Inch by Morakniv http://www.amazon.com/dp/B009NZVZ3E/ref=cm_sw_r_udp_awd_RPeStb0YDHNKY

At 4.1" I don't expect to baton this knife, I like things tough and overbuilt even though I am very cautious with my gear. Will there be any major downfall to the heavy duty blade in terms of cutting, edge, skinning or processing deer?

Thanks!

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Sam Cade
June 29, 2014, 02:56 PM
. Will there be any major downfall to the heavy duty blade in terms of cutting, edge, skinning or processing deer?


Yes and no. For general utility use there isn't much difference.

When making deep cuts or slices the added thickness is going to have a pretty serious negative effect on cutting efficiency.


Brief thoughts on the Mora HD/Robust with lots of pictures comparing the two here:

http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?t=747127&highlight=mora

A HD/Robust Mora doesn't so much slice an apple as beat it into submission, despite being hair-poppin', mono-molecular edge sharp.

jerkface11
June 29, 2014, 03:12 PM
At that price point you could get both and still come in under $30.

Centurian22
June 29, 2014, 03:25 PM
Awesome pictures and review, Thanks! Were it only up to me, at that price I would certainly purchase both. However as it is I will probably catch 'flack' from the wife for spending money on 'another knife I don't need' but these just seem too good to pass up. I just want to make the right call the first time so I don't have to explain why I need yet another.

I guess I need to narrow down what I am more likely to need / appreciate: the thicker durability of the HD or the better cutting / slicing of the standard. I believe it will likely be the standard. I can always go thick on a longer blade for batoning.

Thanks again

Yo Mama
June 29, 2014, 11:32 PM
You'll love the Mora. It's my go to outdoors thrash on and don't care blade. I'd recommend going with the Companion. It is stainless instead of the carbon, but Mora does stainless so perfectly.

I got it for my kid, her first blade, but I've been using it so much more than her:

http://i1188.photobucket.com/albums/z409/heathl1/SAM_1045_zps935b843b.jpg

Mp7
June 30, 2014, 02:55 AM
I keep a stainless Companion in the car at all times.

Could not be happier. Serves as the don't-care-cut-shizzle knife,
and also comes into play, when outdoor BBQs take place and other
people have what i call "edged spoons" in their toolbox.


..... on the other hand:
The cold steel pocket Bushman is a good choice, too :D



(I keep at least a dozen blades in my Campervan at all times. Half of them
are Scandi style blades :-) )

Centurian22
June 30, 2014, 03:31 AM
The companion and companion heavy duty are available in both stainless and carbon/high carbon blades. I have stainless knives and really want to try a high carbon. Glad to hear so many people are so happy with theirs.

GLOOB
June 30, 2014, 05:08 AM
A lot of the drawbacks with the scandi grind happen in the first few tenths of an inch, already. To slice cardboard or thick plastic, you gotta hold a scandi grind a little more diagonal than a thinner edged knife. The thicker version is going to be similar, assuming same edge angle. Unless it's really thick plastic/cardboard, the difference won't be too much.

For skinning the HD should be pretty similar. For splitting/batonning wood, it might be significantly better. For whittling/shaving wood, it should be the same. For processing cold or frozen meat, I think the HD would be pretty darn bad. But that's just a guess, and that shouldn't be a concern.

OTOH, the only major advantage of a scandi grind is for shaving wood and maybe for splitting wood with a baton. If there's any other great thing about it, I'm unaware. Well, I suppose you can add ease of sharpening for some folks. I generally prefer my hair popping, mono-molecular, super sharp edges to have less meat behind them.

Deltaboy
July 4, 2014, 09:12 AM
I got 2 of the regular ones with red handles and the are in my cars and in my work Pac. I am going to get some stainless ones to use in the Kitchen.

Dirty Bob
July 11, 2014, 06:39 PM
I'd go with a stainless Companion. Great knives: I have a few.

Could I also suggest at least looking at the Svord Peasant Knife? It's just about my favorite utility folder. That broad, thin, flat-ground blade slices like crazy. I've travelled all over Europe with one in my checked luggage. Light, non-threatening, inexpensive and useful. It's also easy to take completely apart for cleaning after it's covered with blood, fish guts, etc.

Back to the Moras: the thinner blades -- carbon or stainless -- are a solid choice in a hunting/outdoors blade. I carry a lightweight saw for bigger jobs. If I need to chop, I bring an ax or hatchet with me. I also like compact pry bars, so I'm not tempted to abuse my knives.

All my best,
Dirty Bob

dullone
July 11, 2014, 09:00 PM
oops

dullone
July 11, 2014, 09:03 PM
I'd suggest you also look at Hultafors knives. They come from a 130 year old Swedish company. Hard to find (if neigh on impossible) here in the states. I buy on flea bay from an English source. $11 to $16 depending on style/blade material w/free shipping.
I much prefer Hultafors sheaths to Mora's. YMMV

Sam Cade
July 11, 2014, 09:24 PM
Hard to find (if neigh on impossible) here in the states.

A vendor on Amazon has them.

$13 and free shipping from the UK.

http://www.amazon.com/Hultafors-380020-GK-Handle-Sheath/dp/B004O9MIE4

http://www.thehighroad.org/attachment.php?attachmentid=194207&stc=1&d=1390966300

dullone
July 11, 2014, 09:33 PM
A vendor on Amazon has them.

Same company I buy from on flea bay, slightly less on flea bay.

Centurian22
July 12, 2014, 10:34 AM
Awesome suggestions thanks! I'll look into those other knives before placing an order. Heck at the price I may just sneak in an order for all of them, then give away the ones that don't make the top cuts as stocking stuffers or something.

Deltaboy
July 14, 2014, 04:00 PM
I got all mine off Amazon.

joneb
July 16, 2014, 01:25 AM
I think the thicker blade would be good for splitting, I am thinking of this for a back up dive knife http://www.amazon.com/Morakniv-Bushcraft-Sandvik-Stainless-4-3-Inch/dp/B00B90H1T8/ref=sr_1_21?ie=UTF8&qid=1405471676&sr=8-21&keywords=morakniv or this http://www.amazon.com/Morakniv-Companion-Serrated-3-9-Inch-Stainless/dp/B007C1V8YW/ref=sr_1_45?ie=UTF8&qid=1405488113&sr=8-45&keywords=morakniv not sure how well they will hold up to salt water?

Sam Cade
July 16, 2014, 01:36 AM
not sure how well they will hold up to salt water?
12C27 rust resistance is very good..but it will rust eventually if not maintained.

I think the retention on the might leave something to be desired for dive knife.

hso
July 16, 2014, 01:44 AM
Wonder how that would perform with a full height convex grind applied? Hmmmmmm.

Sam Cade
July 16, 2014, 02:01 AM
Wonder how that would perform with a full height convex grind applied? Hmmmmmm.

The Hultafors GK? Much better no doubt.

Note that it isn't scandi ground. It is a low saber with secondary bevel.

joneb
July 16, 2014, 03:30 AM
I don't mind the Scandi grind for a utility knife, for the money these Swedish knives are worth it. The problem is they are like rabbits, it's hard tellin how many you will have.
200629

joneb
July 16, 2014, 05:54 PM
I have stainless knives and really want to try a high carbon.
This carbon steel Mora scout is a good knife,200654 it seems sharper than their stainless knives and holds a edge better.

GLOOB
July 16, 2014, 07:18 PM
Wonder how that would perform with a full height convex grind applied? Hmmmmmm.

Even the HD is kinda light for a very thick convex grind. Convex is great for chopping.

I have 7 or 8 moras, and all but the carving knives now sport a thin convex. Works great.

Centurian22
July 16, 2014, 09:37 PM
Ok who wants to send me a link to school me on knife grinds? I feel like I'm being left out of a conversation in a different language lol.

joneb
July 16, 2014, 11:58 PM
At that price point you could get both and still come in under $30.
I agree,
I doubt these knives will get any cheaper.

Centurian22
July 25, 2014, 09:53 PM
So after checking out the other knives mentioned, I ended up buying both the companion and the heavy duty companion. Just couldn't say no for the prices. I HAD planned on either giving one to a friend, or using it as my knife to practice sharpening, or something..... Well they arrived today along with my smiths 8" diamond tri-hone sharpening stone.

I.... Am...... Speachless...... These are both by far the sharpest edges I have ever felt on anything other than a fillet knife, and the reg companion rivals and out performs some fillets I've used! I can't bring myself to go anywhere near these edges with a stone. I could do nothing but destroy them! The regular companion did have a pretty rough unfinished spine. That gave me something to play with on the stones and a way to break them in. Should have taken before and after pics but I didn't. Its nice and finished / polished now.

Next up is exploring some of the natural patina ideas. I know I'll never be able to go back to stainless steel again.... What have I done, what have I done? Lol

Thanks for all the help.

22-rimfire
July 25, 2014, 11:16 PM
My personal opinion is that either will work very well for your stated purpose and my guess is you will carry the thicker steel version (heavy duty) on the off chance you feel more comfortable with a bit more blade strength. The Mora's make a great fishing knife too. I have a companion and have been pleased with it. It was my second Mora, but I wanted to try one of these out. If I have any complaint with the Mora knives I own (Scout knife and Carbon Steel Companion), they feel much like kitchen knives and lack the "heft" that I am used to with fixed blades. But they are sharp as the dickens and are easy to maintain an edge on them. I hope you enjoy using them.

joneb
July 25, 2014, 11:34 PM
Glad you like them. I use water stones 600,1000 and finish with a very fine translucent oil stone guessing 2000- 3000 grit. Do some research on sharpening.

Deltaboy
July 26, 2014, 08:42 PM
You be happy with them both. And you will get more.

Centurian22
July 27, 2014, 12:48 AM
I'm just finishing my second attempt at a forced Apple cider vinegar patina on the heavy duty. First try went horribly horribly wrong in so many ways. Second try seems to be going much better. So much of the darkness rubs off even just with a cotton rag (old shirt). We'll see how dark it finishes out this time (second soaking for a little over an hour.

I've looked a little into sharpening and know the basics. I bought a smiths 8" diamond tri-hone with the knives. Coarse and fine diamond and very fine Arkansas stone (don't have the grits handy at the moment. When these blades finally need attention I hope I can do them justice.

Dirty Bob
July 27, 2014, 12:59 AM
There's sharpening info at the Ragweed Forge (http://www.ragweedforge.com/) site. Ragnar's also great to deal with if you decide to buy something. :D

Regards,
Dirty Bob

Centurian22
July 27, 2014, 02:08 AM
So here are the results of patina round 2:

http://i559.photobucket.com/albums/ss35/CaptainChadB/8DFC5C6A-25F3-4E42-8B1E-792A2EFEAA71.jpg

I did it on the heavy duty to start. Now I need to decide if I want to make them match and do the same to the regular or keep them differentiated. For those who don't patina, do you polish, just keep oiled, what? It seems the oil holds better on the patina surface compared to beading up on the non patina so far.

Where its possible to likely that one or both of these could be stored for a month at a time while I'm away at work, I want the best rust protection I can give them. Heck even if I patina the second I might leave them in a jar of oil. I'm afraid to come back after a month and find my new favorite knives pitted rusted and in pain.

Sam Cade
July 27, 2014, 10:44 AM
It seems the oil holds better on the patina surface compared to beading up on the non patina so far.


It does. The surface of the blade is now covered in tiny pits and crevices that the oil (or any other, possibly corrosive, fluid) can cling to, and that is about all it does.

Remember, a patina is corrosion.

Dirty Bob
July 27, 2014, 10:56 AM
Depends on what you use them for. I wipe down food knives, cast iron pans, and a French mild steel pan (my favorite pan!) with cooking oil. I've never had a problem, even with items that are used infrequently, like my plain steel wok.

Knives that aren't used on food get a tiny amount RIG grease. I keep a small piece of cotton cloth with a bit of the stuff on it in a ziploc bag. A little goes a LOOOONG way. This is what I wipe down knives, tools, machetes, etc. with when putting them away after use.

Other preservative oils and greases are available from Midway or from Brownells. I think in your shoes I'd call Brownells tomorrow and talk to one of their techs about rust preventatives. There are tons of great choices available. You could also just search rust prevention in these forums. The results might surprise you. Some people even use paste wax for a preservative, and it can work very well. Avoid Rem Oil, by the way. It's cheap and widely available, but I'm not impressed with it. It's very thin, and I don't trust it for lubrication or rust prevention. BTW, although it's about lubrication, this article by Grant Cunningham might be helpful:

Lubrication 101 (http://www.grantcunningham.com/lubricants101.html)

Regards,
Dirty Bob

Centurian22
July 27, 2014, 02:07 PM
Thanks for the links and info, I'll check them out. There is always a possibility either of these could be used for food so thus far I've been using veg. oil on both. For tools and firearms I've turned to a 50/50 mix of mobil 1 and synthetic ATF. So far no problems. I'm also starting to use Eezox after reading several comparison articles / threads.

joneb
July 27, 2014, 10:05 PM
http://www.amazon.com/Frosts-Carbon-Clipper-Utility-Knife/dp/B000HAOTB4
The sheath looks a bit suspect :scrutiny:

ugaarguy
July 27, 2014, 10:59 PM
There is always a possibility either of these could be used for food so thus far I've been using veg. oil on both.
Thanks to hso's tips, on blades that may come in contact with food I've switched to food grade mineral oil as a lubricant, or food grade paraffin wax (i.e. Canning Wax from the grocery store) as a dry film corrosion inhibitor. I like paraffin on fixed blades because they don't have pivots that need lubrication; and because the wax is dry it stays put and isn't messy.

The sheath looks a bit suspect
It's a variant of the low cost injection molded plastic sheath that all the low cost Moras come with. It's not much to look it, and I was skeptical of the Mora plastic sheaths too. I've found out they're actually quite sturdy and secure though.

Hunter125
July 27, 2014, 11:50 PM
If you are looking to further your collection and were impressed with the Moras, check out J. Marttiini knives. My Mora was sharp when it arrived, but my Marttiini put it to shame. BTW, Marttiini is who makes the nice Rapala filet knives. Very nice knives, very sharp right out of the box, and still pretty inexpensive.

Centurian22
July 28, 2014, 05:28 PM
I like the canning wax idea. I'll be giving that a try. What improvment does food grade mineral oil offer over just plain vegetable oil?

ugaarguy
July 28, 2014, 05:55 PM
The advantage to mineral oils over vegetable oils is that mineral oils are petroleum based. So, they won't spoil, and they break down much more slowly. FGMO is very similar in composition to food grade paraffin wax, but (obviously) liquid at room temperature rather than solid.

hso
July 28, 2014, 10:44 PM
Your patina treatment has also damaged the edge of your new knives along with the surface so you'll probably need to sharpen them. Get an angle guide and stay off the diamond.

People should not experiment with patinas until they've actually had a chance to work with their knives a bit keeping corrosion at bay with wax or mineral oil (or WD40 Specialist AntiCorrosion if you're not going to do food) and if they're going to do it they take a gentle and gradual approach instead of being aggressive.

Centurian22
July 29, 2014, 05:22 AM
hso, as I was researching the patina I became curious what if any affect it would have on the edge, expecting some potential deterioration. I would have been ok with this if it had happened to any noticeable degree as I also want to learn, practice and improve my sharpening and honing abilities. However, thus far I have been unable to detect any loss of sharpness in the edge. Maybe I just don't know how to proper test an edge to the degree to see the difference, or maybe with use the edge will wear more than if I had not applied the patina, I'm not sure. Comeing from someone who was perfectly happy with stainless steel blades like my leatherman wave, and 154cm steel like my benchmade, these two knives have really rocked my world and will continue to be a great learning experience for me especially at less than $30. Thats the best part to me. If I somehow totally screwed up one or both of theses knives beyond any possible repair (which I think would be pretty difficult to do) its not a big deal for me to replace them after having learned some lessons.

Is the hatred of patina here a 'high end knife guy' thing or what? I know you can't believe everything / anything you read online but I did what I considered to be some significant research and found that many sources indicated that a forced patina could significantly reduce the likelihood of the blade rusting if I used it in a less than ideal environment and was unable to properly clean and oil it for some time. I'm not trying to refute what you've said, I appreciate any information and education I can get on things I know little about (high carbon being one of them), I just want to better understand.

Thanks.

Dirty Bob
July 29, 2014, 09:25 AM
I, for one, don't hate forced patinas. I've used vinegar most times. Others use something like vinegar for a light gray, then apply mustard or something similar to do "stripes". Not my style. I usually just let a carbon steel blade go gray naturally with use.

I hope that Ragnar's sharpening instructions (http://ragweedforge.com/scanshrp.html) helped. He also links to some videos on the topic. I'm sure YouTube has plenty on the topic.

I'm sure you're going to enjoy your knives. My all-time fave is the Eriksson #546-G (http://ragweedforge.com/546-g.jpg). It has a 3-3/4" stainless blade that's .079" thick. The hard green hilt is textured and has a single guard. I cut off the belt loop and use it as a pocket knife. I like it so much that I look for pants and shorts with "tube" pockets that allow discrete carry of the 546-G. I also like the #511 (http://ragweedforge.com/511.jpg), which is the same knife in carbon steel with an orange hilt and black sheath. There's one in my pocket right now. Ragnar sells them for $8.

At-home "EDC" is often just a .32 pistol and an Eriksson 546-G or 511. Light, useful tools.

BTW, Ragnar now has the Eriksson #510 (http://ragweedforge.com/510-black.jpg) once again. It's like the 546, but in carbon steel with no guard and a black handle and sheath, for $12. Unfortunately, Ragnar's on break and doesn't return until Aug. 11. :(

All my best,
Dirty Bob

hso
July 29, 2014, 01:06 PM
A difference that makes no difference is no difference. IOW, if you don't see a problem in this case there isn't any worth worrying about.

I consider forcing a patina on a blade to be pretty advanced as a technique and pretty risky if you don't go very slow so I "hate" the whole internet advocacy of it from the standpoint of damaging perfectly good blades. If done carefully and cautiously, a little at a time, it can help crate a somewhat protective layer, BUT it is mostly a decorative thing since there are so many more effective ways to prevent corrosion.

GLOOB
July 29, 2014, 09:17 PM
Come the hot and humid summer season, any of my carbon steel knives and chisels which are stored outdoors grow plenty of surface rust. I find a forced patina conveniently cleans off the rust and adds protection.

When you put a patina on a knife, you are using acid to etch the surface. Oxidized metal (rust) reacts with the acid much faster than unoxidized metal. I.e., most of the things you use to put a patina on a knife also work to remove red rust.

Due to sharpening and stropping, this patina is mostly gone by the time the hot and rainy season comes around again. So it's kind of an annual thing. When stuff starts to rust, I apply the patina.

I'm sure a thorough cleaning and application of oil and wax would be beneficial in itself. But a patina sure helps. The etched surface holds oil better than untreated metal, and that IS a good thing. A big part of the protection given by parkerizing is due to this phenomenon.

On my outdoor tools, I use actual parkerizing solution, simply because I already have some, and it is fast. In fact, I just went through this ritual the other day. A little late this year, and there was plenty of surface rust. Maybe I'll post some "after" pics.

Because they are regularly exposed to water and acids before being wiped down and returned to a climate controlled environment, my kitchen knives develop and maintain a patina on their own. But if they start to get any red rust (usually thru laziness and leaving them wet), I might eventually wipe them down and apply some vinegar... this cleans the rust off and restores the patina to those spots. Maybe you can think of this as converting bad rust into good rust.

So other than occasionally playing around with a new knife, I usually put a patina on a blade in the process of cleaning off existing rust. It would certainly help to apply it preemptively. But since the way I sharpen my knives removes a good bit of the patina, anyway, I don't often bother to do it until my hand is forced.

Gottahaveone
July 30, 2014, 06:56 PM
The regular companion did have a pretty rough unfinished spine.

FWIW, I left the spines on my companions exactly as the factory did, because I found they run a fire steel much better with that roughness. YMMV :)

Centurian22
July 30, 2014, 08:46 PM
I thought about leaving it and if it had been a more even unfinished spine I might have but I wanted it evened out. I can play with the spine to find what will work for fire striking.

joneb
July 30, 2014, 11:11 PM
I like a flat sharp spine on these knives for scraping stuff, this is a advantage for me.

GLOOB
August 10, 2014, 02:59 PM
Here's a pic of my outdoor Mora knives next to their indoor brothers. You can see where I sharpened the #2 since putting on the patina.
http://i688.photobucket.com/albums/vv241/gloob27x/DSCF59751_zpsa56516bb.jpg

Here's a closeup of where the rust was worst. On this laminated 106, the harder inner layer of steel rusts the worst. The darker area of the edge near the tip was completely covered in rust. The regular #2 had surface rust all over, but not as bad. You probably can't see the darker spots throughout the patina in the first pic. Parkerizing solution wiped on with a cloth transforms the rust before your eyes. Even at room temp, it only takes a few minutes.
http://i688.photobucket.com/albums/vv241/gloob27x/DSCF59741_zps8998797c.jpg

I like a flat sharp spine on these knives for scraping stuff, this is a advantage for me.
I like a flat spine for scraping and for steeling. This is one reason I keep two knives on my workbench. They clean each other of glue/residue and sharpen each other. If you zoom in on the first pic you can see where the soft outer layer of the laminated knife gets dinged up from this chore.

This patina is not for show. It's a 50% byproduct of cleaning and 50% functional rust protection, making it a maintenance thing as opposed to a one-time application of a coating. I rarely find a need to resharpen a knife after the patina. The edge is barely affected. On a razor edge, it might take a couple strokes on a hone and strop, at most. Nothing that you wouldn't do on that kind of edge for regular maintenance, anyway.

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