ProTech Dark Angel OTF Knife Review

ProTech Dark Angel

The Pro-Tech Dark Angel OTF Knife

 

ProTech Dark Angel
ProTech Dark Angel OTF Knife

Pro-Tech is a family owned company based out of Sante Fe Springs California. Pro-Tech has made its name by producing fantastic automatic knives. They have been building these high quality knives for over 17 years now. This company was founded by Dave Wattenberg in 2001. Since then they have collaborated with knife makers such as Ernest Emerson, Walter Brend, and Allen Elishewitz. Some of the most famous and most popular knives that Pro-Tech has made have been the Godfather, Godson, and the Runt J4.

The company’s mission is to produce high quality knives made out of the finest materials that they can get ahold of. Pro-Tech makes smaller batches of knives than most companies so that they can hand fit and finish each knife to produce higher quality knives than you could find if it was factory made. Because of these smaller batches, they make around 12,000 knives a year.

The fantastic knife that Pro-Tech has developed that we are going to discuss today is the Pro-Tech Dark Angel Out-The-Front knife.

 

The Blade:

The blade on this knife is made out of 154CM steel. 154CM is a high end stainless steel that has been made by Crucible. This is a relatively hard steel. 154CM steel is considered to be an upgrade from 440C steel, because 154CM steel has Molybdenum is added. Because of the added Molybdenum, this type of steel can hold a fantastic edge while it also holds on to its corrosion resistance properties. However, even though this type of steel is a stainless steel, it will rust if it is left in wet or damp environments. To prevent this happening to your knife blade, especially if you live in a humid environment, you should always remember to keep your blade clean and oil it often. You shouldn’t be turned off from this steel just because it might rust—any stainless steel will rust if left in damp environments and neglected. You just need a little extra maintenance with 154CM stainless steel. This steel is also fairly easy to sharpen.  This steel type has pretty good toughness; it has high enough levels of toughness to stand up to most tasks—including the heavier duty tasks that you will throw at this blade. This steel is found commonly in quality pocket knives. In fact, Emerson Knife Company uses this type of steel exclusively. This type of steel maintains lots of good, durable properties, but it is less expensive than a premium steel such as S30V. This steel has a good balance between being hard, tough, and resistant to corrosion. This specific knife design comes in a variety of different blade colors, some being: black, silver, and even a custom Damascus blade. All of these knives have plain edges.

The shape of this blade is a dagger style. This style of knife has also been known as a needle point blade. This shape of blade is a double-edge blade designed to be able to thrust and stab. The blade comes to a very thin, sharp point, providing you with maximum ability to pierce into your target. However, because it has such a fine point, the tip is more prone to breaking, especially if you are stabbing a hard target. The double edge means that instead of a normal knife only being sharpened on one edge and having the back, or spine, unsharpened; this blade does not have an unsharpened side. Both edges on this blade have been sharpened. Because it is able to cut on both sides, this blade shape is a fantastic option for a self-defense weapon. Especially if you are in tight quarters. One disadvantage to having a dagger style blade is that it has no belly and the edges get thick quicker than most styles of knives. These two characteristics make it a poor choice if you want to slice anything. In the center of this blade, there is a thin cut out. This cut out cuts down on weight that the blade would have had otherwise. This blade cut out also offers a unique look that you won’t find on many knives.

 

The Handle:

The handle on this knife is made out of 6061T6 hard anodized aluminum. A hard anodized aluminum creates an oxidation layer on the aluminum that can make your handle up to 30% harder than some stainless steels. When an aluminum is anodized, it provides the aluminum with color. This knife comes in a variety of different colors. Some of your options are silver—with two finishes: satin and stonewash, black, desert sand, or dark desert sand. Anodizing the aluminum also offers extra harness and protection. This is the most common form of finishing aluminum and it makes your aluminum handle very durable. Because aluminum has such a low density for a metal, it offers you a heftier feel without the added weight. Aluminum can be slippery, especially in wet environments, unless properly texturized. When it is properly texturized, your grip on it will be reasonable, but still not fantastic. Another drawback to having an aluminum handle is that it is going to feel so cold in a cold environment and can start to feel very uncomfortable in your hand. Other than feeling cold, aluminum is a comfortable material that is easy to use, even for long periods of time. Aluminum is very resistant to corrosion. However, it can be easy to scratch the surface or ding it up a bit. The handle will still work perfectly after this, but it won’t look as aesthetically pleasing. If you are going for a truly superb handle material, you might want to check out aluminums brother, titanium.

 

The Pocket Clip:

The pocket clip on this knife is newly designed from Pro-Tech. This is a customized part of this knife. This clip actually folds over itself helping allow a deep “hidden” in the pocket look. The benefit of a deep carry pocket clip is that it is not going to slip out of your pocket. With a deep carry clip, you know that your knife is safe and secure in your pocket. This specific pocket clip allows you to conceal your knife better than other pocket clips.

 

The Mechanism:

The Pro-Tech Dark Angel is an automatic out-the-front knife. Like always, automatic knives are not legal in all states or areas. Before you purchase and/or carry this knife, make sure you know your local knife carrying laws. An out the front knife is a unique style of automatic knife. Instead of the blade folding or flipping out of the side of the handle, there is a hole in one end of the handle where the blade pops out of. The blade of an OTF knife travels on an internal channel, at the bottom of this channel, there is a spring that launches the blade out, when the button or trigger is pushed. This is only a single action OTF automatic knife. This means that to deploy the knife, you push the button and the blade will pop out, but to put the blade back in, it takes a little more work. To close this knife, you push the button down and at the same time, you slide the charging bar back along the side. Because there is more of a mechanism that has to lay inside of an automatic OTF knife, the handle has to be thicker or longer than a manual OTF knife.

 

The Sheath:

This knife comes with a nylon sheath. Nylon is a very common material used for knife sheaths. This is a relatively inexpensive material, especially compared to kydex or leather sheaths. However, you do get what you pay for. And while nylon is a cheaper material, it will be more prone to wearing out quicker than these two previous materials. Nylon also has the tendency to stretch out over time, and while the sheath will still work adequately at that point, your knife won’t be held as securely or snugly. However, I shouldn’t be focusing on the negative. There are many fantastic characteristics that nylon sheaths have. For starters, nylon is resistant to rot and mildew. They are not as vulnerable to water as a leather sheath would be. This means that your sheath will need a lot less maintenance than other sheath materials would need. Plus, nylon is not easily scuffed or torn. Another big bonus about nylon sheaths is that the nylon is relatively quiet. If you are trying to be stealthy or conceal yourself, nylon won’t give you away. Nylon is not as silent as leather would be, but it’s not loud, especially when compared to a plastic or kydex sheath. This nylon sheath will get the job done for you and last quite a while.

 

The Specs:

The Pro-Tech Dark Angel’s blade is 3.75 inches long with a blade thickness of .125 inches. When this knife is open, it measures at 8.9 inches long. When this knife is closed, it measures up at 4.5 inches long. This knife weighs in at 3.4 ounces. This size and weight are the perfect size and weight for an everyday carry knife.

 

Pros of the Pro-Tech Dark Angel:

  • The steel is a high end stainless steel.
  • Holds a fantastic edge and is still easy to sharpen.
  • The blade has high corrosion resistance abilities.
  • The blade has high toughness that can take on even the heavier tasks.
  • This steel has good properties and is still cheaper than S30V or other premium knives.
  • The blade comes in multiple different colors.
  • Has a very fine tip, perfect for stabbing.
  • Both edges are sharpened, so it is a perfect weapon for self-defense.
  • Anodized to add color, hardness, and protection.
  • Aluminum handle is durable, but not with the added weight.
  • Aluminum is very corrosion resistant.
  • Aluminum is a very comfortable material to hold.
  • Pocket clip is custom, deep carry.
  • Automatic knife, so it will deploy very quickly.
  • Included nylon sheath has many fantastic properties for a lower cost.

 

Cons of the Pro-Tech Dark Angel:

  • The dagger style has a fine point; it is prone to breaking if used incorrectly.
  • Aluminum handles will feel extremely cold in cold environments.
  • Aluminum can be very slippery, especially when not texturized properly.
  • Automatic knives are not legal in all states or areas, so you have to be careful when purchasing and carrying this knife.
  • Nylon sheaths will not last forever; they will break down eventually.

 

Conclusion:

Pro-Tech is a unique company. They have a hybrid of mass producing knives and building each one custom. They make their knives in small batches, only around 12,000 knives a year. They keep them small so that they have the ability to hand finish each and every knife. They use the highest quality materials to produce the highest quality knives that you can stumble across. Each one has taken time, and care, and they are truly remarkable. Pro-Tech has been around for over 17 years and they have been producing fantastic knives ever since. They have collaborated with knife makers such as Ernest Emerson and Walter Brend. Pro-Tech knows what they are doing when they design, build, and finish all of their knives.

The Dark Angel has been no exception. They started out with a high quality steel that can take on almost any task that you throw at it. This steel can get a fine point and they enhanced this by giving the blade a dagger style shape to it. By giving the knife this shape, they have created an excellent self-defense weapon. They designed a custom pocket clip to top the whole automatic knife off. And with this fantastic knife comes a great nylon sheath. This is a remarkable knife that has been exceptionally produced. The Pro-Tech Dark Angel would be a fantastic addition to your knife collection and it would make a perfect everyday carry knife for you.

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