|Like many emergency tools, the KLAX offered a limited assortment of wrenches, a hammer head, a knife edge and what appears to be a gut hook or seat belt cutter-style edge.|
Friday, February 7, 2020
Klecker Knives has, like many start-up companies, has closed its door and gone out of business.
I never like hearing about businesses failing. They, I’ve always believed, are the engine of American prosperity. While the mega companies spend and hire more, I’ve always believed they have no loyalty to a community other than the financial balance sheet. The small companies, with its roots in the community, hiring from the community is better for the community.
Enough of my soap box on that.
Klecker Knives was started by Glenn Klecker, former Marine who started the company in 2011 with his son, Nathan. They made a range of interesting products, ranging from plastic knife-making kits for children to his award-winning KLAX, a folding axe head. The KLAX was his headliner.
I remember the excitement about this axe head at the Blade Show when it was first announced. The axe head uses an ingenious clamp system to allow you to slide the relatively thin head down a split wood branch and then rotate the clamping arms out of the plane of the axe head. Tightening the clamping arms fixed the axe head to the branch.
The implication being all you need to pack, when traveling light, is the light axe head and you can make an emergency hand axe. The few videos and examples I saw were made with branches that were sawn off, which suggests an important limitation. Even so, the concept is very intriguing.
The only difficulty I saw was in harvesting the branch and splitting it, both activities would benefit from having a hand axe. A prepared wooden shaft would solve that complication and allow for easier packing in bug-out or three-day pack.
Their inventory has been auctioned off but I don’t know about the name rights, I suspect Glenn will keep ownership to Klecker Knife. Many companies are interested in purchasing designs so we may see Glenn involved with sharp edges in the future again.
Will the KLAX become a collector item? Find one and let me know in a decade.