Benchmade 940-1 Osborne Knife Review

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, they continue to innovate with the goal of taking performance and reliability to the next level. To exceed what is expected. Benchmade says, “Whether you are using a Griptilian® for every day duties or taking the fight to the enemy with the Infidel®, our knives are built to perform. When you choose to purchase a Benchmade, you do so because you want the best. You demand it. And programs like our LifeSharp Lifetime Service and Warranty are the foundation of our commitment to excellence. We live it and breathe it, and we know what you mean when you say: It’s not a knife. It’s my Benchmade.”

So what really sets them apart? Well, it starts with 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 select premium blade steels and pair them with aerospace-grade handle materials to create premium-grade knives and tools that provide great value for their customers.

The next thing that sets them apart is the mechanisms. Benchmade says, “The mechanics of opening and closing a knife are essential to its function. 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? These are critical considerations when it comes to the mechanism.”

Lastly 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 a human hair. Their 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 Benchmade 940-1 Osborne everyday knife.

 

The Designer:

This knife was made designed by Warren Osborne. Being raised in the farming and ranching industry taught Warren early on what great utility a quality knife can offer. How a knife feels in the hand over extended use, blade design/edge configurations, and the types of materials used are all mandatory considerations of an Osborne design.

 

The Blade:

The blade on this knife is made out of S90Vsteel. This is an ultra-premium steel made by Crucible Industries. When Crucible is describing this knife they say, “It is a martensitic stainless steel to which vanadium and carbon have been added for exceptionally good wear resistance. CPM S90V offers substantial improvements in wear resistance over 440C and D2, and other high chromium steels, with corrosion resistance equal to or better than 440C. CPM S90V’s high vanadium content favors the formation of hard vanadium carbides instead of chromium carbides for wear resistance, leaving more free chromium available to provide corrosion resistance.” Because this stele has extremely high wear and corrosion resistance, it is a better steel than 440C, especially in situations where increased wear is a major concern. And when you are worried about increased corrosion resistance, this steel can even replace D2 or other tool steels. However, this steel does have a high vanadium carbide content, which means that its machinability and grindability is going to be more difficult than steels such as D2 or even 440C. To sharpen this steel, you are going to need the best sharpening equipment.

The blade has been finished with a satin finish, which is one of the most popular blade finishes in the cutlery industry to date. This finish is created by repeatedly sanding the blade in one direction with an increasing degree of a fine abrasive. The most common abrasive that is used is a very fine sandpaper. As a key, the finer the abrasive and the more even the lines, the cleaner the finish is going to look. Because this is a Benchmade knife, you can expect a very clean satin finish. The satin finish is traditional as well as helping to reduce reflections, glares, and even corrosion.

The blade on the 940-1 Osborne has been carved into a Reverse Tanto blade shape. The While the regular tanto has no belly, the reverse tanto has a very slight belly. This belly is going to be almost non-existent when you compare it to a drop or clip point blade, but it will allow you to use this knife as an everyday knife, while a regular tanto would prohibit that. One of the characteristics that the regular tanto as well as the reverse tanto have in common is the extremely strong tip. This is what a tanto knife is designed for. There is excess steel near the tip so that it can withstand being repeatedly pierced through things. And because there is not much of a belly, the tip is broader, instead of fine, which also increases the strength of the tip considerably. This knife has been designed as an everyday carry as well as an outdoors knife. The slight belly is going to allow you to take on a wider variety of tasks, which is ideal for your everyday carry uses. The broad tip is going to give you the strength that you need when you are in the great outdoors. No matter which of these purposes you choose to use the 940-1 for, the reverse tanto was a great addition.

The blade is a plain edge, which equips you to take on a wider variety of chores. The plain edge is also easier to sharpen because you don’t have to worry about the teeth. However, the plain edge is going to get dull more quickly than a serrated edge would. The plain edge gives cleaner cuts as well.

 

The Handle:

             The handle on this knife is made out of dark grey carbon fiber. Carbon fiber is the term that is given to any material that is made by having thin strands of carbon that have been tightly woven together and then set in a resin. Carbon fiber is extremely strong, but also lightweight. This is ideal because you know that you are going to have the heft that you need to take on any task, be it your everyday chores to an extreme adventure outside, but you won’t feel like you are being weighed down. However, because of the labor and time it takes to make carbon fiber, this is a very expensive material.

Even though carbon fiber is strong, it is not an indestructible material and it does suffer from being brittle. This is because all of the strands of carbon have been woven together in one direction. When they are stressed in that specific direction the material is going to remain intact and very strong. However, as soon as they are stressed in other directions, they will begin to break apart. Since this is a brittle material, it can crack if it is subjected to hard or sharp impacts. The overall benefits of a carbon fiber handle is that it is going to be strong, lightweight, and look very nice. The overall disadvantages of having a carbon fiber handle is that it is going to be expensive and a little bit brittle.

The handle on this knife has been woven together in an eye-catching pattern. The weave will also provide the user with a little bit of extra texture. Other than that, the handle is pretty simple. The spine of the handle does bulge out slightly towards the middle, which will give you a more comfortable grip. The belly of the handle is relatively straight, which matches the handle aesthetic nicely. Although the belly of the handle is straight, you will still feel like this is a comfortable handle to hold and use—even if it is for long periods of time. There is a slight fiber groove that does have a little bit of shallow jimping to further provide a more secure grip. There is also a finger guard, which will help protect your fingers in case of slippage.

Benchmade 940-1 Osborne
Benchmade 940-1 Osborne

All of the hardware on this knife is a darker grey, which matches the handle well. Except for the locking mechanisms, which is a bright silver, contrasting nicely with the handle and matching the blade of this knife.

 

The Pocket Clip:

The pocket clip on this knife is not a deep carry clip, which is a little bit of a drawback. The handle has only been drilled to attach this clip for tip-up carry. However, it is reversible for either left or right hand carry, which helps to make this knife completely ambidextrous.

 

The Mechanism:

This is a manual opening knife. In terms of legality, having a manual opening knife is a major benefit. It is going to be legal for carry in more states, cities, and areas. Of course, you should always check your local knife laws before purchasing or carrying a knife. In terms of efficiency, the manual opening lock can be a disadvantage. This knife is not going to be as quick or smooth as an automatic knife would.

The blade has been equipped with a thumb stud to help you open the knife. The thumb stud is one of the most common one-handed opening mechanisms. The thumb stud sits on the blade about the position where the blade pivots on the handle. This mechanism is good for a comfortable way to open the knife with only one hand. However, it does put your hand very close to the blade itself. There are plenty of stories of someone trying to open their knife with their thumb stud and slicing themselves in the process. Keep this in mind and always be cautious when you are using the thumb stud.

This knife has always been equipped with an AXIS lock. A patented Benchmade exclusive, AXIS® has been turning heads and winning fans ever since its introduction. A 100 percent ambidextrous design, 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. As a result, the tang is wedged solidly between a sizable stop pin and the AXIS® bar itself

 

The Specs:

The blade on this knife measures in at 3.4 inches long with a blade thickness of 0.115 inches. The handle on this knife measures in at 4.47 inches long with a handle thickness of 0.44 inches. When the 940-1 is opened, it measures in at an overall length of 7.87 inches long. This knife weighs in at 2.44 ounces. This knife was also made in the United States of America, so you can feel proud to own, carry, and use it.

 

Conclusion:

When Benchmade is discussing this knife, they say, “Highly regarded as one of the most quintessential EDCs of all time, the 940 and 943 are slim, stylish and after over a decade have performed in just about any situation imaginable.” The S90V steel is durable and extremely wear and corrosion resistant. With the blade made out of this steel, you won’t have to worry too much about maintenance. The satin finish is gives this knife a very traditional look, so you know that your knife won’t go out of style, but it also won’t be too attention-grabbing. The reverse tanto allows this knife to be a perfect option for either an everyday carry knife, or even an outdoors knife. The thumb stud makes for quick, easy, one-handed opening. The AXIS lock and the pocket clip help to make this knife an ambidextrous design. The carbon fiber handle is durable and low maintenance, while still looking nice. You can pick up this knife today at BladeOps.