Benchmade says, “For over thirty years, Benchmade has been designing and manufacturing world-class products for world class-customers. When Benchmade was founded, the mission was to create something better; something exceptional. Today, we continue to innovate with the goal of taking performance and reliability to the next level. To exceed what is expected.”
Benchmade has an edge on the industry that stems from a variety of different reasons.
For starters, there are the materials. Benchmade builds knives for the most demanding customers, from special operations forces to elite backcountry hunters, and building for the best requires the best raw materials. They only select premium blade steels and pair them with aerospace-grade handle materials to create premium-grade knives and tools that provide value for their customers.
Next is the mechanisms. The mechanics of opening and closing a knife are essential to its function. They ask, “is it easy to actuate? Can it be opened with one hand? Is it ambidextrous? Will it absolutely not fail when you need it the most?” They ask these questions because they know that those are critical considerations when it comes to the mechanism.
The third reason that they have the Benchmade edge is the manufacturing. The Benchmade factory employs modern laser cutters and CNC machining centers that offer control and tolerances commonly found in the aerospace industry—often to tolerances half the width of the human hair. They say, “Our commitment to modern machining techniques and rigid quality control has allowed Benchmade to bridge the gap between custom and manufactured.”
Today, we will be talking about the brand new Benchmade Grizzly Ridge.
The Grizzly Ridge is in the Benchmade HUNT series. Benchmade says, “Research projects, R&D lab tests and many miles of field research provided the foundation for the design and development of Benchmade HUNT. Built from advanced materials usually reserved for spaceships and surgical equipment, these technologically advanced hunting knives provide refined performance and rugged durability.”
The blade on this knife is made out of CPM S30V steel. This steel is made by US based steel company Crucible Steel Industries. They say, “CPM S30V is a martensitic stainless steel designed to offer the best combination of toughness, wear resistance and corrosion resistance. Its chemistry has been specially balance dot promote the formation of vanadium carbides which are harder and more effective than chromium carbides in providing wear resistance.” This means that the steel will be extremely tough, especially when compared to other high hardness steel such as 440C and D2. Plus, it’s corrosion resistance is equal to or better than 440C in various environments. This steel resists rusting and corroding with ease. This quality is ideal in a hunting knife, because you don’t want to deal with maintenance while you are in the field. So while you will need to wipe it down, you won’t have to worry too much about rusting like you would if the steel rusts easily. And, dollar for dollar, this steel is known for having the perfect balance between edge retention, hardness, and toughness. This is a surprisingly hard balance to maintain because the harder the steel is, the less tough it is going to be. The harder the steel, the better the edge retention. So what is CPM? Crucible says, “The CPM process produces very homogeneous, high quality steel characterized by superior dimensional stability, grind-ability, and toughness compared to steels produced by conventional processes.” This steel really only has one drawback, which is because of the hardness, it is going to prove hard to sharpen.
The blade has been finished satin, which is created by repeatedly sanding the blade in one direction with an increasing level of fine abrasive, which is normally a sandpaper. This is the most traditional blade finish and the most popular blade finish that is used today. The satin finish reduces glares, reflections, and corrosion.
The blade has been carved into a drop point blade shape. This is a great all-purpose knife that is able to stand up to anything. It is also one of the more popular blade shapes that are used in the cutlery industry today; the most common place that you are going to find this style of blade is on hunting knives. The blade shape is formed by having the back edge of the knife run straight from the handle to the tip of the knife in a slow, curving manner, which creates a lowered point. Lowered points give the knife more control and add strength to the tip. It is because of how controllable the drop point blade is that makes it such a good option on hunting knives, such as this one. The lowered, controllable point makes it easier to avoid accidentally nicking internal organs and ruining the meat. Another feature of the drop point style blade that it makes it exceptional for hunting is the large belly. The belly is going to make slicing a breeze, perfect for field dressing your game. The drop point blade shape does have one major disadvantage, which is the broad tip does reduce your ability to pierce or stab. This shouldn’t be a big deal when it comes to your hunting knife, but if you are looking for a knife that is going to excel at piercing, you should look for a knife with a clip point blade shape.
Of course, like all good hunting knives, the Grizzly Ridge features a plain edge.
The handle is made out of Grivory with a Versaflex inlay. This material is the proven material for metal replacement. Grivory is used in knives, especially hunting knives, because it has high levels of strength. This ensures that your handle won’t break when you are out in the field and cannot replace your knife. Also, Grivory is not known for absorbing liquids, which is ideal for when the job gets messy, as hunting jobs always do. Grivory also has good chemical resistance, so you don’t need to worry about the acidity of your game’s body fluids to compromise the quality of this handle. The Grivory used on this knife is a tan-gray. All of the components of this knife handle have been outlined in orange to match the Versaflex inlay. The inlay provides plenty of texture so that you don’t have to worry about slipping and injuring yourself.
The spine of the handle is relatively straight, as is the bottom of the handle. Although, the bottom of the handle does have a finger groove and a large finger guard. This guard is perfect for when things get slippery.
On the butt of the handle, a lanyard hole has been carved into it. The lanyard is a huge deal for a hunting knife for a couple of reasons. For starters, it allows you to tie this knife onto your belt loop, your backpack, or just tuck it into your pocket a little deeper. However, if you are in the middle of an extra slippery job and you are worried about how much texture you have, you can wrap the lanyard around the handle to provide a more solid grip. Lastly, if you loop the lanyard around your wrist, you don’t have to worry about losing your knife inside of the game that you are dressing if you do happen to lose grip on it.
The Pocket Clip:
The pocket clip on this knife is a split arrow pocket clip, which means that it is shaped like an arrow and is mostly skeletonize. This helps the clip attach more efficiently to your pocket while also cutting down on weight because of the skeletonized handle. This is a benefit, because when you are out hunting, you don’t want to worry about what is going on with your knife, you want to be able to trust that it is securely attached inside of your pocket. Plus, every ounce counts when you are on a long hunting trip. By skeletonizing the clip, the weight of the entire knife is reduced—just for you. The pocket clip has only been designed to be attached for tip-up carry. The clip is also reversible for either left or right hand carry, which helps to make this knife more ambidextrous.
This is a manual opening knife that uses a thumb stud as well as Benchmade’s AXIS locking system. Because it is a manual knife, you don’t have to worry about the strict knife laws that are in your area and that surround automatic knives. Of course, always know your local knife laws regardless.
The thumb stud is one of the most common one-hand opening features that you are going to be able to find. It is used by a wide variety of knife manufacturers and designers, including Benchmade. The thumb stud has been designed to replace the nail nick that is found on more traditional knives as well as older folding knives. The concept is very straightforward—you hold the folded knife in one hand, place the tip of your flexed thumb on the stud and extend your thumb to swing the blade through its arc until the blade is fully open. Knives’ with a thumb stud will include a locking mechanism of some sort, in this case, the AXIS mechanism. Some people complain that the thumb stud gets in the way because it does protrude directly out of the blade. Another issue with the thumb stud is that your hand ends up in the path of the blade throughout the opening process, which makes it one of the less safe opening mechanisms. However, this is also one of the easiest opening features that you are going to find; you will be able to figure it out quickly. The pocket clip on this knife is bright orange.
A patented Benchmade exclusive, AXIS has been turning heads and winning fans ever since its introduction. A 100 percent ambidextrous designs, AXIS gets its function from a small, hardened steel bar that rides forward and back in a slot machined into both steel liners. The bar extends to both sides of the knife, spans the liners and is positioned over the rear of the blade. It engages a ramped tang portion of the knife blade when it is opened. Two omega-style springs, one on each liner, give the locking bar its inertia to engage the knife tang. A s a result, the tang is wedged solidly between a sizable stop pin and the AXIS bar itself.
The blade on this knife measures in at 3.50 inches long, with a blade thickness of 0.124 inches. The handle measures in at 4.34 inches long, with a thickness of 0.58 inches. The overall length of the Grizzly Ridge is 7.84 inches long. This knife weighs in at 3.77 ounces. This Benchmade knife was made in the United States of America.
Benchmade says, “Based on the highly regarded Grizzly Creek, the Grizzly Ridge brings the comfort and sure grip of a dual durometer handle, a blade designed for all around hunting utility, and unique orange accents.” The Blade steel is very resistant to rusting and corrosion, which means that maintenance is going to be a breeze—perfect for when you are on a long hunting trip and cannot worry about cleaning the blade well. The satin finish is classic. And the drop point blade shape is perfectly designed for hunting knives. The lowered tip allows you to expertly dress your game while the large belly makes slicing a breeze. The handle is durable, strong, low maintenance, and does not absorb liquids—the ideal combination for your new hunting knife. The Versaflex overlays add plenty of texture for when things get messy. The AXIS lock keeps this knife safe to use while also allowing for quick and easy one-hand opening. The thumb stud also lets you open the knife easily with only one-hand. You can pick up this brand new Benchmade knife today at BladeOps and have your new favorite hunting knife—the Grizzly Ridge.