Monday, February 22, 2016

Gifts

There are few gifts nicer than a pocketknife. 

If you don’t agree with that statement it is probable because no one ever gave you a pocket knife.  Recently I’ve been gifted with two.   Honestly, it’s impossible to determine if I like one more than the other.  It’s quite possible I like both of them equally.

My friend Tom sent me a nice Buck Slimline from customer appreciation days at Buck HQ.  As I understand it, many of the knives available at these days are of limited production and one and done uniqueness. 

Buck knives

Thanks Tom! 
The Buck Slimline is a nice one hand opening lock blade.  The steel is 420HC that has been cryogenically quenched.  Buck likes this steel a lot and with good reason.  It makes a great blade for general use.  420HC contains 0.45% carbon and 13% chromium.  The cryogenic heat treatment helps ensure the best combination of steel phases.  This all adds up to a stainless steel blade with a RHC of 58.  The blade is stain resistant and is hard enough to hold an edge, not be brittle and can be sharpened with ordinary stones. 

I love the black handle with blood red drizzle.  My love of Bucks started in college with the Buck 110.  I can’t tell you how many camp fires I’ve built with that Buck.  Now I have another, but it’s just too pretty to use!  I’m deeply touched by this Buck.


1996 Bullet
1996 Bullet Knife

My friend Paul passed on a number of years ago.  I met him because I was a shooting buddy of his wife and we grew close. Paul was a soft spoken man and I always found him to be dependable and keeper of his word.  These are virtues I value.  

I recently got his Remington 1996 bullet knife.  It’s in great shape, Paul seldom carried anything he thought was too fancy.  The knife has a master blade as well as a smaller blade.  It also comes with an awl, corkscrew, bottle opener/straight blade screwdriver and a nasty looking can opener. The blades are 440 stainless and the bolsters are nickel silver, a copper alloy containing copper, nickel and zinc, but despite its name, no silver.

The boxed knife lived in a drawer mostly because Paul, I suspect, was saving it for when he would really need it.  But I saw a very different connection.  The knife is called the Trailhand and Paul was a good man to ride the trail with.



P.S.  That is pretty tacky of you, Kevin, to post your price list as a comment on my blog without asking me.  If I had to guess, I would suspect you're friendless and will probably die alone and forgotten.  Make changes now while you still can.

Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Shadow Tech’s Claw


ST Folding Karambit
The large prototype folding Karambit
Originally, like so many martial art weapons, the karambit originated in southeast Asia. Inspired by the claws of big cats, the natives initially used this design for mundane activities, like raking roots, gathering threshing and planting rice.  Over time. circumstances forced the development of farm and every day implements into weapons of self-defense.


“The karambit is held with the blade pointing downward from the bottom of the fist, usually curving forwards however occasionally backwards. While it is primarily used in a slashing or hooking motion, karambit with a finger ring are also used in a punching motion hitting the opponent with the finger ring. Some karambit are designed to be used in a hammering motion. This flexibility of striking methods is what makes it so useful in self-defense situations. The finger guard makes it difficult to disarm and allows the knife to be maneuvered in the fingers without losing one's grip.
The short Filipino karambit has found some favor in the West because such proponents allege the biomehanics of the weapon allow for more powerful cutting strokes and painful "ripping" wounds, and because its usability is hypothesized as more intuitive, though there continues to be debate about this matter.”
It takes hardly any effort to find self-promoting YouTube videos of how to use a fightin’ karambit.  Any of these complete videos can be purchased, …our operators are standing by…

The problem with fixed knives is they are not easy to conceal, a necessary condition of modern society.  Shadow Tech has been making fixed blade karambits for some time now.  They are currently, in a secret laboratory/dojo, developing two folding karambits.  And joking aside, they look pretty great.  I’ve only seen prototypes but they were very close to production models. 

Two almost ready for manufacturing prototypes
Make that 2 to go, please.
I expect a there will be a little tweeking before and possible after release.  After all it is only mythology in which Venus springs forth from the ocean in all her perfection.  I do know the knives will be made from Crucible’s 154CM steel.  Some of the best knife companies use 154CM steel for their blades.  ST is using it for liners, liner lock and clips also.  The clip will be reversible and the knife rides tip up.  At least that was the plan when John and I talked about it.


liner lock has full thickness of lock behind the blade
Many knives, many fine knives have only a portion of the liner lock behind the blade

The liner lock will throw its complete thickness behind the blade spreading out the force of folding over a wide surface.  My limited experience suggests that may require a little more effort on your part to unlock the knife.  Pushing the liner lock over may require you to dig your thumb a little deeper in the lock, but you can image the painful consequences of having the lock fail.

ST tells me they will have two sizes, a large aggressive blade,
Large size

And a smaller blade. 

The small size

John tells me there will be several ways of snagging the blade’s opening stud and/or geometry to open the blade as you draw it from your pocket.  That’s very cool.  

Still remember what one veteran told me:
“I carry in my pocket.  If there could be trouble I move the knife from my pocket to behind my belt.  If I think there is going to be trouble, the unopened knife is carried in my hand.”

A karambit has the potential to increase even an unskilled person’s survival potential.  Give that and Shadow Tech some consideration.