Benchmade 484-1 Quick Review

Benchmade 484-1            Made in the USA

With the Benchmade Nakamura, the saying “you get what you pay for” has never been truer. The quality of manufacturing, materials and construction are all completely top-notch. Featuring gorgeous carbon fiber handles for lightweight strength, S90V blade steel for optimal resistance to wear and electric blue barrel spacers and pivot pin for a pop of color, this knife strikes the perfect balance of strong performance and detail in design.  All this care and attention to detail make this knife not only functionally flawless, but also pleasing to the eye and to the touch. For an EDC tactical folder like this, where details can make all the difference, these special touches make an already great knife truly exceptional. Carrying this knife every day for a year will cost less than $0.75/day, and will continue to perform year after year. The very definition of good value, grab the Benchmade Nakamura 484-1 today to know you are carrying only the very best from Benchmade in performance, functionality and design.  Pick it up on our website here.

Benchmade 484-1
Benchmade 484-1
Facebooktwitterpinterest
Facebooktwitteryoutubeinstagram

Kershaw Emerson CQC-2K Knife Review

Kershaw Emerson CQC2K, Front View
Kershaw Emerson CQC2K, Front View

The Kershaw Emerson collaboration series features classic Emerson style knives with the production quality of a Kershaw.  With the release of the CQC-2K stinger knife, you get a quick deploying blade, a comfortable handle that ensures a solid grip, as well as a unique opening system.

The 2 3/4″ blade on this knife boasts a modified clip point with a slight recurve.  The recurve makes pull cuts a breeze especially when cutting straps, rope and string.  The outward curve of the belly “holds” the item to be cut and allows the blade to slice through it with greater ease when making pull cuts.  The clip point gives greater strength to the tip of the blade when making piercing cuts.

The blade on this Kershaw knife is 8Cr13MoV stainless steel with a black oxide coat that gives even more corrosion and wear resistance to an already great blade steel.  The blade will be relatively easy to sharpen—I would call it an 9 of 10 on ease of sharpening scale– and should keep a fine edge under heavy use for a reasonable amount of time.  Sharpening the blade will require a small bit of skill to sharpen along the recurve edge.  The recurve isn’t overly aggressive and shouldn’t present much of a problem to any but the absolute novice knife sharpener.

Blade locks in place with a seriously secure frame lock.  The pivot pin can be adjusted with a normal flat screwdriver.  The knife comes a bit stiff out of the box.  I actually prefer this on a manual folder so that the blade doesn’t flop open without cause.  You can loosen the pivot a bit and make it for a “looser” open if you prefer.  The blade does have a ball detent that keeps it “locked” in place when the blade is in the closed position.

To open the blade with the Emerson “wave feature” you just the knife out of your pocket and at the same time pull it backwards toward the area behind you.  As you do this, the “wave feature” hook catches on the edge of your pocket and pulls the blade into the open and frame locked position.  Done properly, this method of pocket retrieval® is simple and quick.  In fact, done right this knife opens faster than most automatic knives because the blade is deployed as soon as you have it fully out of your pocket as opposed to most auto knives that require you to withdraw them from your pocket and then press the fire button.

Kershaw Emerson 6024BLK
Kershaw Emerson 6024BLK, Back View

The handle has a black G10 front scale and a 410 black oxide finished back scale.  There is a nice, deep yet gentle finger groove for your forefinger that is followed by a long curve for the rest of your fingers.  This is a relatively small knife which means that for someone with extremely large hands it may feel too small.  For average to large hands the size should be just right.  Some mild jimping is found on the spine of the handle scales for a bit of extra grip.

Tip up right or left pocket clip.  Lanyard hole for alternate carry.

This knife is specifically shaped for serious slicing and piercing.  A fantastic EDC knife for anyone who wants a well built knife that is easy to use and has serious power.  Check out the Kershaw Emerson CQC-2K on our website here and let me know what you think of it below.

SPECIFICATIONS: 

  • Designed by Emerson, built by Kershaw
  • Thumb disk; “waved shaped opening feature”
  • Manual opening
  • Frame lock
  • Reversible pocketclip (left/right)
  • Steel: 8Cr13MoV, black-oxide coating
  • Handle: Textured G-10 front, 410 black-oxide coated back
  • Blade length: 2.75 in. (7 cm)
  • Closed length: 3.6 in. (9.1 cm)
  • Weight: 2.8 oz. (79.4 g)
Facebooktwitterpinterest
Facebooktwitteryoutubeinstagram

Kershaw Select Fire Knife Review — Quick Review

Kershaw Select Fire
Kershaw Select Fire

The Kershaw Select Fire features a big, bold blade and several useful bits that come in handy when you least expect it.  Designed by Grant and Gavin Hawk, this handy tool isn’t the run of the mill multi tool that gives you a bunch of finicky tools you will never use.

First and foremost, this is a knife.  The manual open classic style drop point blade opens smooth with the ambidextrous thumb studs.  The whopping 3 3/8″ blade is extra wide for serious cutting tasks.  A bead blast finish gives the stainless steel blade even more protection against corrosion and wear.  The 8Cr13MoV steel keeps an edge and is easy to sharpen when tune up time arrives.

The handle is wide and chunky.  The handle flares slightly wider as it moves toward the butt, which gives it an extra comfortable feel in your palm.  Dual finger grooves allow you to hold the knife in a more set back position for normal cutting chores or to choke up on the handle for precision cuts.  Made from glass reinforced nylon, the handle has a series of grooves across the face that add a nice texture to the grip as well as visual appeal.

On the top of the handle, there is a unique cutout that displays the bit driver head.  Grab the bit driver and swing it out towards the handle and you have a perfectly useful tool for those times when you most need a screwdriver and don’t have one.  In the middle of both handle scales you will find two bits in a swing out holder.  The spring set bit holders swing closed when you let go of them, ensuring the bit holders are always in the closed position.  Two included flat drivers and two hex drivers are what come with the knife, but you could easily switch these out for your favorite driver heads.

Most multi tools have one, two or three useful tools and then a bunch of fiddley tools that never get used and when they do, they seem to break or fail at the most inopportune times.  The Select Fire from Kershaw boils it all down to the basics.  You get a knife with a fantastic blade along with a bit driver to screw and unscrew whatever you want.  In my world, that gives me the ability to get nearly everything I need done without taking up any more Pocket Real Estate® than necessary.  Check this knife out on our website and let me know what you think down below.

 

SPECIFICATIONS:

  • 1/4-in. hex drive, 2 flathead, 2 crosshead bits
  • Ruler on bit drive shaft
  • Liner lock
  • Thumbstud
  • Single-position pocketclip
  • Steel: 8CR13MOV, bead-blasted finish
  • Handle: Glass-filled nylon
  • Blade length: 3.4 in. (8.6 cm)
  • Closed length: 4.25 in. (10.8 cm)
  • Overall length: 7.6 in. (19.4 cm)
  • Weight: 5 oz. (141.7 g)
Facebooktwitterpinterest
Facebooktwitteryoutubeinstagram

Kershaw Emerson CQC-4K Knife Review

Kershaw Emerson CQC-4K
Kershaw Emerson CQC-4K

Kershaw and Emerson have just collaborated to release a line of knives built by Kershaw Knives based on the classic Emerson features.  Each of these knives boast the “wave feature” that has made Emerson so popular over the past several years.

The CQC-4K is a slim, ready for action manual knife that is built for serious daily carry or tactical use.  The precision engineered knife has a modified drop point blade with a standard edge.  Finished black for maximum wear resistance and glare control, the blade opens smooth and easy.  The best part is it opens with the “wave feature” as you pull it from your pocket.

The “wave feature” is a small hook built into the blade.  As you pull the knife from your pocket, if you pull it back at the same time, the hook catches on your pants pocket and opens the blade.  By the time you have the knife fully withdrawn from your pocket, the blade is open, locked and ready for action.

The blade is 8Cr13MoV stainless steel.  You can expect solid, workmanlike performance from a blade like this.  This stainless steel is generally tempered to a Rc56-58 range.  Generally comparable to AUS-8 stainless steel, the 8Cr13MoV has slightly more carbon but performs simliarly.  The blade is going to give solid corrosion resistance, keep a good edge and be easy to resharpen when the time comes.  The black oxide coating on the blade adds a bit of corrosion resistance.

Let’s move to the handle.  A solid frame lock system, the front scale is textured, coyote brown G-10 on a 410 stainless steel handle frame.  Lock up is solid with the frame lock achieving a nice secure lock every time.

The pocket clip is tip up, reversible for right and left.

The blade reads Emerson and has the Emerson Skull logo and the pocket clip also displays the Emerson Skull logo.  The back of the blade reads Kershaw and then the model number.

This knife is currently selling for around $36.  Considering a standard Emerson will set you back well over $100, this new Kershaw Emerson knife is a definite bargain.  Check them out on our site and let me know what you think of yours below.


SPECIFICATIONS: 

  • Designed by Emerson, built by Kershaw
  • Thumb disk; “waved shaped opening feature”
  • Manual opening
  • Frame lock
  • Reversible pocketclip (left/right)
  • Steel: 8Cr13MoV, black-oxide coating
  • Handle: textured G-10 front, 410 black-oxide finish back
  • Blade length: 3.25 in. (8.3 cm)
  • Closed length: 4.2 in. (10.7 cm)
  • Weight: 4.1 oz. (116.2 g)
Facebooktwitterpinterest
Facebooktwitteryoutubeinstagram

Kershaw Ultra-Tek Sharpener Review

Kershaw Ultra-Tek
Kershaw Ultra-Tek Sharpener

The Kershaw Ultra-Tek Blade Sharpener is one of the most convenient touch up sharpening steels on the market.  I use the Spyderco Sharpmaker when I want to do a full sharpen job on my blade.  I also have a Ken Onion Sharp Maker which is a fantastic little belt sharpener.  But when I am outdoors, on the go, or just need to put a quick touch up on one of my blades, I go with the Ultra-Tek.

The handle is built from 6060-T6 anodized aluminum.  This means it is made from heavy duty aircraft aluminum and is going to take a beating.  This tool doesn’t mind if you throw it in your pack or gear bag and bang it around.  It is nearly indestructible.  The handle is 5″ long but the main usable part is 4″ long.  The other 1″ is actually attached to the sharpening stone and can screw onto the handle with the stone stored inside the handle or screw onto the handle with the stone out of the handle, ready for use.  At the top of the 4″ part, there is a band of diamond texture pattern for your fingers to get an extra grip.  The top 1″ of the handle has the same texture pattern on the whole of it.   The entire handle piece is simply a hollow tube, which makes it very easy to clean.

When you first open your new Ultra-Tek, the 600 grit, diamond coated oval shaft is stored inside the handle. This grit has been specially chosen for its superior ability to restore an edge.  When your blade is still in good shape, but is just a bit dull, pull out your Ultra-Tek and unscrew the oval shaft from the handle interior.  Flip it around and screw it on.  Now you have a 9″ tool ready to sharpen and realign your blade.

To use the Ultra Tek, you simply hold your blade at a 20° angle and slide your blade across the shaft.  You just pull the blade across the oval shaft in an arcing motion.  Slide and swipe your blade from the heel to the tip.  It works just like a steel or a hone–the kind you probably have in your kitchen for touching up your kitchen knives.  When you do this, you need to put quite a bit of pressure on the knife.  In fact, according to Bob Kramer, a master bladesmith, you should put between 4 and 6 lbs of pressure on your blade as you slide it across the sharpener.

If you do this regularly, you will quickly gain expertise at putting a razor sharp edge back on your knives.  The benefit to you is that your tools will be in better shape which means your cuts will be smoother and safer.

The Ultra-Tek doesn’t need water or oil which makes it a perfect field tool.  It weighs just 2.1 ounces, which means it isn’t going to weigh you down–exellent even for ultra light backpackers who want to keep their tools in tip top shape.  And the whole thing stores in a tiny space of just 5 inches by about 3/4″.

If you already have a nice sharpener for your knives, whether it is stones, a Spyderco Sharpmaker or even a nice electric sharpener, consider getting a Kershaw Ultra-Tek for quick blade touch ups.  You can find it here on our website.  Let me know what you think of yours below.

S

The Ultra-Tek requires no water or oil. It’s lightweight and easy to use. And it stores compactly, making it easy to take with you.

SPECIFICATIONS:

  • Steel: 600-grit, diamond-coated, oval shaft
  • Handle: 6061-T6 anodized aluminum
  • Sharpening steel length: 4 in. (10.1 cm)
  • Overall Length: 9 in. (22.9 cm)
  • Stored length: 5 in. (12.7 cm)
  • Weight: 2.1 oz. (59.5 g)
Facebooktwitterpinterest
Facebooktwitteryoutubeinstagram

Advantages of CPM-S30V Stainless Steel

CPM-S30V has become one of the most used premium steels on the market among knife manufacturers.  Originally developed by both Chris Reeve (a world renowned knife maker) and Dick Barber of Crucible Industries, S30V is a martensitic powder-made stainless steel.

Martensitic is a specific type of stainless steel alloy. There are three main classifications of stainless steels if you want to classify them by their crystalline structure.  They are, austenitic, ferritic and martensitic.  Martensitic steels are carbon steels that are usually tempered and hardened.  This tempering gives the steel good hardness and high toughness.

S30V lands directly in the Martensitic camp.  It is also a powder made, sintered stainless steel.  Sintering is the process of making a solid by using heat and/or pressure without actually taking the substance to the liquid state.  Sintering is often used with materials that have an extremely high melt point, such as molybdenum.  CPM-S30V contains a 1.45% Carbon, 14.00% Chromium, 4.00% Vanadium and 2.00% Molybdenum.  Since it has a small but significant presence of Molybdenum, this high end stainless steel is produced by mixing tiny “ball bearing” bits of each of the appropriate ingredients.  After being thoroughly mixed, the entire batch is sintered or fused with heat and/or pressure.  This allows the atoms in the various materials to fuse together into one solid piece of stainless steel.

The vanadium carbides in S30V give the steel an extremely refined grain.  The uniform grain structure created during the process of making CPM-S30V gives the blade uniform wear and strength across the entire blade.  This means there are no weak points like can occur in many other stainless steels.

If you are looking for a high end stainless steel knife that will keep an edge, that will be durable, and will resist corrosion–definitely consider one made with a CPM-S30V blade.

According to Wikipedia, “CPM-S30V is considered a premium grade knife steel. It is so expensive that it strongly affects the price of the knife, and is largely used in higher-end production and custom knives.”  

Because of its high durability, high corrosion resistance and edge retention, Benchmade Knives entire new line of premium hunting knives, appropriately called the HUNT series, are all made with CPM-S30V.  Many other knife makers use it extensively as well including Spyderco Knives, Piranha Knives, Zero Tolerance and Microtech Knives just to name a few.

Facebooktwitterpinterest
Facebooktwitteryoutubeinstagram

Bear and Son 114 Silver Vein Butterfly Knife Review — Quick Review

Bear & Son 114 Butterfly Knife
Bear & Son 114 Butterfly Knife

Bear & Son Cutlery has been making some of the best, low cost butterfly knives on the market for quite some time.  The classic model 114 consistently delights new and old butterfly users.

The knife features a 440 stainless steel blade attached to silver stardust die cast handles.  The handles boast classic mid level weight.  With five slot holes in each handle, the balance between the handles and the blade is fantastic.

The hollow ground, drop point style blade measures 3 5/8″ long.  It is attached to the handles with pins.  This means you don’t have to worry about maintaining the proper tension with torx screws. The biggest issue with many pin construction butterfly knives is that over time, they get sloppy and are not adjustable to clean up the slop.  The Bear & Son 114 doesn’t seem to suffer from this malady. The blade moves loosely in the slots at the top of the handle but it doesn’t get really sloppy over time like many low cost butterfly knives do.

The construction and materials are such that this butterfly knife stands up to some serious use and abuse.  Like most novice butterfly users, I have dropped and tossed my 114 many times.  It still doesn’t show any serious wear and tear.

One thing I learned is that if you want to learn new moves with your butterfly knife, you are probably going to cut yourself from time to time.  One way to fix this is to run a strip of black electrical tape over the sharp edge of the blade.  When you make a mistake, it still stings a bit but at least it won’t cut.

If you are looking for an entry level butterfly knife that is going to stand the test of time and abuse, check out the Bear and Son 114.  You can find it here on our website.  Let me know what you think of yours down below in the comment section.

 

SPECIFICATIONS:

  • Blade Material : 440 Stainless Steel
  • Handle Material : Zinc (Epoxy Powder Coat)
  • Blade Length : 3-5/8″
  • Overall Length : 9-1/4″
  • Closed Length : 5″
  • Weight : 5 oz.
  • Extras : Hollow Ground Blade
Facebooktwitterpinterest
Facebooktwitteryoutubeinstagram

Kershaw Emerson CQC-5K Knife Review — Quick Review

Kershaw Emerson CQC-5K
Kershaw Emerson CQC-5K

The next installment in the Kershaw Emerson collaboration series features the classic attention to detail and manufacturing excellence you expect from a Kershaw knife along with the design elements that make Emerson knives so incredibly useful in everyday life.  The CQC-5K features olive drab handle scales of G10.  This linerlock knife all the cutting versatility you can imagine from a clip point blade.  And as a kicker, the blade has a black oxide finish for a slightly tactical look, but even more important, it offers an extra layer of corrosion resistance to the stainless steel blade.  Throw in the Emerson “wave feature” and you have a knife that opens fast and is ready for action with a quick pull from the pocket.

If you haven’t had a chance to see the “wave feature” in action, it is something to behold.  As you pull the knife from your pocket, you angle the pull back just a bit more than normal.  This allows the small hook, or “wave feature” to catch on the top corner of your pocket.  As you continue the pull, the blade actually pulls open.  This allows you to have a fully opened and engaged blade as soon as you have the blade out of your pocket.  Definitely a fantastic feature on a manual knife.

 If you have been looking for a manual knife the new CQC line of collaborative knives from Kershaw and Emerson is certainly one to check out.  These knives are relatively inexpensive.  They are built from materials that are going to last a lifetime with proper care.  The “wave feature” turns a manual knife into something special.  Plus they look fantastic.  Check out the CQC-5K on our website here.  Let me know all about your new Kershaw Emerson down below. 

SPECIFICATIONS: 

  • Designed by Emerson, built by Kershaw
  • Thumb disk; “waved shaped opening feature”
  • Manual opening
  • Liner lock
  • Reversible pocketclip (left/right)
  • Steel: 8Cr13MoV, black-oxide coating
  • Handle: Textured G-10
  • Blade length: 3 in. (7.6 cm)
  • Closed length: 4 in. (10.2 cm)
  • Weight: 3.7 oz. (104.9 g)
Facebooktwitterpinterest
Facebooktwitteryoutubeinstagram

Kershaw Emerson CQC-1K Knife Review — Quick Review

Kershaw CQC-1K Knife
Kershaw Emerson CQC-1K Knife

The newest release in the wildly popular Kershaw Emerson collaboration knives, the CQC-1K stinger knife gives you all the advantages of a high end Emerson knife at an extremely budget concious price.  Built with a black oxide finished blade that protects and keeps things low key, the CQC-1K boasts a textured black G10 front handle scale along with a stainless steel black oxide finished back handle scale.

The blade, like all the knives in this series, opens smooth with the “wave feature”.  This mechanism allows you to catch the spine of the blade on the edge of your pocket as you withdraw the knife from your pocket.  As the blade spine “catches” on your pocket, it pulls the blade into the open position so by the time you have withdrawn the knife fully, it is open and in the locked open position.  The blade locks in place with a solid frame lock.  Alternatively, you can open the blade with the thumb plate attached to the spine of the blade.

The modified and elongated clip blade gives you an extremely functional blade for everyday cutting purposes.  A full 3″ blade allows you to get all your daily cuts done whatever your needs may be.

Comes with a tip up, right handed pocket clip.  You can find this new Kershaw knife on our website here.  The product code is KS6094BLK.  Let me know what you think of yours below.


SPECIFICATIONS: 

  • Designed by Emerson, built by Kershaw
  • Thumb disk; “waved shaped opening feature”
  • Manual opening
  • Frame lock
  • Reversible pocketclip (left/right)
  • Steel: 8Cr13MoV, black-oxide coating
  • Handle: G-10 front, 410 black-oxide coated back
  • Blade length: 3 in. (7.6 cm)
  • Closed length: 3.9 in. (9.9 cm)
  • Weight: 2.6 oz. (73.7 g)
Facebooktwitterpinterest
Facebooktwitteryoutubeinstagram

Smith & Wesson SWATL Assist Knife Review

Smith & Wesson SWATL
Smith & Wesson SWATL assist knife

The Smith & Wesson SWAT knives have been delighting knife lovers for quite some time.  Built with the MAGIC assist mechanism, these assist knives blast open with some serious force.

The 3.7″ stainless steel drop point blade gives you a serious blade for serious cutting chores.  The blade opens with the ambidextrous thumb studs.  Or, better yet, you can open the blade with the spine flipper.  The blade snaps out as fast as most automatic knives.  Lock up is nice and tight with a well constructed liner lock.  When the blade is open, you can slide the safety on the front handle scale which then locks the blade in the open position, giving you extra blade security when making heavy cuts.

The handle is anodized aluminum with a natural silver color.  This is nicely accented with grip tape inserts which give you amazing grip on the already comfortably ergonomic handle.  There is mild jimping in all the usual places.  The butt of the handle boasts a countersunk lanyard hole for alternate carry.

The pocket clip is extra wide.  Set in the tip down, right hand carry position, the clip is removable, but not reversible.

This full size assist knife is perfect for anyone looking for a big, well built, durable knife for daily carry and heavy use.  I especially like the blade open speed.  A classic shaped knife under the Smith & Wesson banner.  Comes with a limited lifetime warranty. Check it out here on our website.

Facebooktwitterpinterest
Facebooktwitteryoutubeinstagram