Cold Steel Delta Dart Fixed Blade Knife Review

Cold Steel is a Ventura, California seller of knives, swords, and other edged weapons and tools. Cold Steel products are manufactured worldwide, including in the United States, Japan, People’s Republic of China, Taiwan, India, and South Africa.

The company’s products include fixed blade knives, folding knives, swords, machetes, tomahawks, kukris, blowguns, walking sticks, and other martial arts items and training equipment. Their knives are used by military and law-enforcement personnel worldwide.

Cold Steel is credited with popularizing the American tanto in 1980. Cold Steel marketed knives made for them in the U.S. by Camillus using a carbon steel given the trademarked name “Carbon V,” read Carbon five. Their imported knives were nearly all made in Seki Japan using Aus8 which Cold Steel labelled “400 Series Stainless.” They also had two models made in Taiwan, both of which switched to Japan in 2000. In 2007 Camillus New York went bankrupt and Cold Steel was force to find a new manufacturer for their carbon steel fixed blades. Cold Steel first went to China but allegedly due to quality issues they switched to Taiwan production. At the same time Cold Steel moved all of their folding knife manufacturing from Seki japan to Taiwan. The carbon steel was Sk5 and stainless was AUS 8 both imported to Taiwan from Japan. However, the Sanmai II models remained strictly Seki Japan production.

Today the knives made in Japan us VG-1 stainless steel and VG1 core Sanmai III, the Taiwan models use German 4116 stainless steel, D2 steel, 1055 high carbon steel, O-1 high carbon, SK-5 high carbon steel, Japanese AUS 8A stainless steel and American CPM 3V tool steel. The largest Sanmai III fixed blades are made by Hattori. Cold Steel’s folding knives are renowned for their lock strength, due primarily to the introduction of the TRI-AD locking mechanism, designed by custom knife maker Andrew Demko.

Cold Steel’s products feature heavily in movies, TV shows, games and web series. Their knives have seen prominent use in numerous action movies since the early 1980s.

Many of Cold Steel’s employees are martial artists and weapons experts, who feature in their notorious marketing videos. Some of the members of their “crew” are also Hollywood stunt men, fight choreographers, and trainers, most notably, Ron Balicki, Luke LaFontaine, and Anthony DeLongis.

The founder also writes regular articles regarding the use of knives for self-defense.

Today we are going to be discussing the Cold Steel Delta Dart fixed blade.

Cold Steel Delta Dart Fixed Blade
Cold Steel Delta Dart Fixed Blade

The Blade:

The blade on this knife is actually non-metallic and made out of Zytel. Zytel is a trademark owned by DuPont and sued for a number of different high strength, abrasion, and impact resistant thermoplastics. Zytel is a family of cost-effective, high-performance polyamides offering strength, durability, and ease of processing. When the goal is to reduce weigh, improve strength, enhance durability, increase thermal performance, or simplifying the process, Zytel is the logical choice to go. This high performance resin is available in specific grades that sustain high strength and stiffness over a wide range of temperatures, chemicals, and moisture exposure. Zytel can be used to replace metal parts while increasing the durability, and reducing the total cost and weigh through parts consolidation. Some of the key attributes are stiffness, high strength, and fatigue resistance.

The blade on this knife has been exactly designed for self-defense and piercing, so naturally it sports a needle point blade style. This style of blade is also called a dagger blade and is the opposite of a sheepsfoot blade: it is all about the point. The blade on this knife is double edged, with the primary purpose of piercing and stabbing. The blade is formed of 2 symmetrically sharpened blades that taper to a thin sharp point, which easily pierces into soft targets. The two sharp edges reduce the profile of the knife and let it cut in on both sides equally. This makes the blade style a favorite design for self-defense in close combat situations. The needle point blade is popular among military and police personnel because of their ability to be easily concealed and easily withdrawn. While this blade does excel in self-defense situations, there are a handful of disadvantages to this style of blade. Because the blade lacks a belly and does contain quickly-thickening edges, this blade is not going to be good for slicing or slashing. And, because the tip is very sharp and thin, it does have a tendency to break when used on harder targets, because it is pretty weak. While this blade is not going to be an all-purpose blade, it is designed exceptionally for self-defense and piercing. In fact, you are going to be hard pressed to find a better knife to help defend for yourself.

Like most self-defense weapons, the Delta Dart sports a plain edge. This is so that it can more efficiently be pushed into soft targets. Plus, it is easier to get a finer edge on the blade because you don’t have to worry about all the teeth that a serrated edge would give.

 

The Handle:

The handle on this knife is also made out of Zytel. So I’ll go over some of the other qualities of Zytel and why it is such a good option for a handle. Zytel is the name brand version of either Fiberglass Reinforced Nylon (FRN) or Glass Reinforced Nylon (GRN), which are all three the same materials. This material is crazy strong, resistant to bending, abrasion, and is practically indestructible. Plus, as a cherry on top, it’s a cheap material to manufacture and purchase. This is an inexpensive material to produce because it can be injection molded into any desired shape and textured in a multitude of ways in the production process. All of these characteristics lends well to high volume manufacturing and hence low cost.

This material is similar to G-10, Carbon Fiber, and Micarta, but it is less brittle than those other materials. The other materials are more brittle because the nylon fibers are arranged in a single direction, so when the handle is stressed in another direction it begins to break apart or crack. With Zytel, the nylon fibers are arranged haphazardly throughout which results in it being strong in all directions.

However, many people did not warm up to this material because they felt like it was cheap and somewhat hollow. Plus, this handle is not as grippy as G-10, which is what many people desire.

The handle is completely rounded, and is knurled on all the parts that you would be holding. This knurling is going to help you maintain a very secure grip even if your hands are sweating because of nerves or you’re in a wetter environment.

The butt of the handle has an O-ring attached, which is ideal for attaching to carabiners or even a keychain. It is this O-ring that will allow you to keep this self-defense knife with you at all times so that you are prepared whenever you need it.

 

The Mechanism:

This is a fixed blade, full tang knife, which is the perfect option for self-defense. A full tang is when the piece of metal, or in this Cold Steel knife’s case, Zytel for the blade continues on and turns into the handle. It means that there is no portion where’re the blade and the handle had to be welded together which means that there is not going to be any weaker spots. Because this knife is a full tang, you can rely on it and won’t have to worry about it letting you down ever. You can take on those tougher materials without needing to consider if this knife is going to be able to manage it or not.

There are plenty of advantages to this knife being a fixed blade and they all related back to how well it is going to be able to assist and defend you. For starters, fixed blades are sornger and bigger. Because the blade does not have to fit inside of the handle, it is thicker and longer than if it were a folding knife. This means that you will be better capable of defending yourself. And, like I previously mentioned, it is a full tang which makes it much stronger and won’t break.

One of the other major benefits of this knife being a fixed blade is that it is going to be much easier to maintain. There are no inner workings which could break or rust. And, cleaning is much easier because all you have to do is wipe down the handle and blade. You don’t have to worry about taking the knife apart to clean the inside—it’s all a very simple process.

One of the most important advantages about the Delta Dart being a fixed blade is that it can be brought into play faster than a folding knife. With a folding knife, you have to take the knife out of your pocket or boot, then deploy it, and then it can defend you. With a fixed blade, all you have to do is pull it out and you are able to defend yourself.

 

The Specs:

The blade on this knife measures in at 3 3/8 inches long, with a handle length of 4 ¾ inches long. The overall length of this fixed blade measures in at 8 1/8 inches long. Because of how lightweight Zytel is, this knife weighs in at a measly 1 ounce.

 

The Pros of the Cold Steel Delta Dart:

  • This is a very lightweight knife, which is perfect for self-defense because you can have it with you at all times and not feel like it is weighing you down.
  • The Zytel blade cuts down on wear and weight.
  • The Zytel blade is extremely durable.
  • The very sharp point does excel at self-defense and piercing into other soft targets.
  • The plain edge will allow you to push into soft targets slightly easier than you could if you the blade had teeth.
  • The Zytel handle is very strong.
  • The Zytel handle is very tough.
  • The Zytel handle has zero maintenance because it is not metal, which means that it cannot corrode.
  • The Zytel handle is very inexpensive, which means that the cost of the knife is reduced.
  • Because of the way that the Zytel is manufactured, it is practically indestructible—perfect for a self-defense handle because you need your self-defense knife to be durable and reliable.
  • The handle is knurled where you will be gripping it, which gives you the most secure grip.
  • There is an O-ring on the butt of the handle that is easily attached to a carabiner.
  • The knife is a full tang, which means there are no weak spots where it has been molded together.
  • The fixed blade can be brought into play quickly and efficiently.
  • Fixed blades are long, strong, and down to get the friction on.
  • Fixed blades are easy to maintain.

 

The Cons of the Cold Steel Delta Dart:

  • While it is lightweight, that also means that it is not going to have a ton of heft behind it.
  • The needle point style of blade does have a weak point that can break on hard targets.
  • The blade style does not have a cutting edge, or belly, that you would normally use for slicing.
  • The Zytel handle has a cheap plastic feel.
  • The Zytel handle is less grippy than G-10.
  • Fixed blades are harder to conceal than a folding knife.

 

 

Conclusion:

The Cold Steel Delta Dart fixed blade knife is made entirely out of Zytel which offers incredible durability despite only weighing 1 oz. Completely designed for piercing, the non-metallic 3 3/8″ blade consists of a fine point and a triangular cross section–ideal for self-defense. The handle is almost completely knurled which gives the added advantage of extra gripping power even with such a thin profile and the end of the knife offers a rounded base for comfortable thumb placement. Finally, the metal O-ring attachment allows you to easily attach it to a carabiner. Pick up this perfect self-defense weapon today at BladeOps.

 

Airsoft and My Cold Steel Leatherneck, by M.A.

A LITTLE WORD ABOUT AIRSOFT IN THE WORLD

Airsoft is some kind of joke for any serious military or firearms enthusiast, and for many good reasons. Airsoft ‘guns’ – even the most expensive ones – are nothing more than toys for kids, or movie props at best: unreliable, lightweight replicas, very cool to grab and shoot, but without any value for any serious shooting-range enthusiast. Airsoft ammunitions also lacks any marking system, so airsoft skirmishing should never be considered a real sport, but a game for ‘old aged kids’ trying to feel ‘inside movies’ or – in the worst ‘human cases’ – inside computer games.

THE ITALIAN AIRSOFT CHAMPIONSHIP

Despite that sad basic truths, Italy got crazy for airsoft and in a few years we found ‘our’ way to transform it in something REALLY serious. The most doesn’t know but here in Italy there is a well established (around 20 years) italian airsoft championship that solved the problem of the marking system using only one very smart rule.  Teams DON’T play against each other (as in football, soccer, Formula One, etc) but fight against arbitrators. In simple words, arbitrators act as the ‘bad guys’ and set up the very same mission for every playing team, and the one that accomplish this very same mission better than any other, is the final winner of that event.

Each championship run is made by five events in two years and I personally play my region’s championship from more years than I want to admit to myself (fifteen…. Yep).
In the nineties – when the championship was still ‘young’ – the events were short and simple, they weren’t physical demanding and didn’t required any land navigation skill.
But year after year, the championship always got harder and harder, to the point that nowadays the average difficulty sounds crazy to the most.
The hardest events usually require players to march up to 60 kilometers in 30 hours, without any real pause to sleep and under ANY weather (rain, snow, etc).
No matter how tired, cold, wet, sleepy you are… You have to never give up with both mind and body, because when you are too tired/wet/cold/sleep, fighting well is much more difficult.
My team’s best result ever, was 28th on 260 teams from all Italy in 2009.

THE BLADEOPS STORY

Cold Steel Tanto Leatherneck
Cold Steel Tanto Leatherneck

What I am going to tell you didn’t happen during one of those hardcore championship events, but during a ‘movie inspired’ non-sporting event, mostly made to entertain people and without any final classification at all. Anyway, most players were coming from the local championship, and I finally had the pleasure to have the italian champions right on my side during a couple of missions (the ‘Blackhawks’ of Pastrengo, really funny guys I am a friend of from a long time).

Most of the fun of the event came from the fact that every player had his own fictional character and had to act accordingly, so to create a fictional, movie-like world.. So, here’s what happened.

My four men patrol was radio-ordered from headquarter to go on certain coordinates on the field, to check some ‘unknown movements’.

It was night, and when we reached the place, we found two relaxed, armed guardsmen talking aloud, as if they had nothing to do. Thinking they weren’t enemies and dangerous neither, we didn’t opened up fire and approached them peacefully, saying we were army regulars. They told us that they were guards of a nearby bank and that we kindly had to ‘back off’, which we did. We then hide back in the woods and radioed our headquarter who the guys were, and what they were doing.

“Stay in place, team 7” was the reply.
“We are going to give you a mission”

After a couple of minutes the orders arrived: we had to conquer the bank with ‘extreme prejudice’, but first we had to try to convince the two guards to simply go away.
Then I had an idea, so I offered myself to my team to talk again with the guards.

I pulled out my Cold Steel ‘leatherneck’ training (hard rubber) knife from its sheath, then I reverse gripped it, covering it with my wrist and forearm.  Since the pockets of my woodland-BDU pants are very large, I also put half of it inside my pocket.
From the front point of view, it was invisible. My plan was to put my rifle on the ground and go to talk with the guards, but with the hidden knife at the ready. Then, I realized I was making a bad mistake.

My rifle has a three points sling and I was wearing it around my neck, so there was no way I could put my rifle down on the ground using one hand only. And using two, I would have surely exposed the knife in the pocket. So I took the sling out from my neck and hold the rifle with one hand only. When I was ready, my team mates hide themselves in the woods while I stayed in plain sight, waiting for the guards to return.

A couple of minutes later, they were back in place. This time they were silent and their rifle were at the ready. Anyway, seeing me on the open and right in front of them with the rifle pointed muzzle down, they thought I had no bad intentions.

“Can I talk with you again?” I said but they didn’t reply.
So I added: “I put my rifle down on the ground. You see? I leave it here and come to you”
“Okay then. Come here”

Seeing I left the rifle far away, the two guards relaxed a lot, and lowered their weapons from at-the-ready to down on their slings. I walked to them than I started to talk:

“The army told me to stay on guard in this sector but they didn’t talk me about any bank”
“Anyway, here there’s a bank for sure, and it’s our duty to watch it. Regular army or not, you can’t stay here”
“It probably is just a map misunderstanding, but we have a job to do. Can you please simply get away?”
“Of course we can’t. That’s a problem of yours, not ours”
“I don’t know how to say that to you guys. So I will put it plain and simple: you should really get the XXX away from here”
“We are not going anyway you stupid –

With a single movement, I slid my rubber knife under both the necks in front of me.
Cold Steel’s training rubber is quite hard, so for safety reasons I slid it a little lower than the real throats were and before the talking guard could end his phrase, everything was already over. A little while of silence followed up.

“I just slit both of your throats” I said.
“You did it for sure” said one guard.
“I don’t know if rubber knives are covered in our rules” said the other.
“As you wish – I said – but my team is hidden right behind you. You see? And they are ready to fire”

The guards turned themselves and saw the rest of my team coming out from the darkness of the nearby trees.

“It doesn’t matter – said one guard to the other -, I liked the way he did it and his acting too. Go on with your mission right now, guys. Time is clicking”

IN THE PHOTO:
Me just a few minutes before the events told here.
I wear a woodland BDU with an english ARKTIS ‘long range’ chest.
My airsoft weapons weapons were:
+ a PANTHER ARMS short barrel version of the M4
+ a WILSON COMBAT CQB (1911 clone in the inner holster of the ARKTIS, not visible)
+ a Cold Steel Leatherneck training knife (near the neck, barely visible)
+ an ATN NVM-14 night vision monocular

Freedom Isn’t Free, by W.H.

Freedom Isn't Free
Freedom Isn’t Free

This is my Cold Steel Ti-Lite. I own many knives that are far more extravagant looking, made of better materials, and carry a heavier price tag, but this knife is truly my favorite. It has not to do with its capabilities as a blade, or what utilitarian function it serves, but the memory of my dear friend Matt Smith, or as some in his battalion knew him as ” Lance Cpl. Mathew Smith”.

Matt was my good friend all through high school. We played football together, we fished together, we hunted together, we talked about guns and knives together. We were two peas in a pod. After we graduated high school, Matt immediately enlisted in the Marines. As a joke referring to a YouTuber known as ParkourDude91, I got Matt a Kabar knife with ” Semper Fi ” written on the side of it in silver sharpie marker. On the day that Matt left for his deployment, he gave me a Cold Steel Ti-Lite knowing how much I disliked Cold Steel. On May 10, 2003, Matt’s mother called me and told me something that I was not ready for. At the young age of 21, and only 8 days before returning home, Matt’s Humvee was involved in a non-hostile accident which took his life.

Other than the missing thumb stud, the knife is mint condition. I’m afraid to carry it, afraid to use it, afraid to lose or break the one thing I have left of Matt. I keep it on my desk along with a picture of him and I standing on the banks of Lake Erie right before we set out to go Walleye fishing.

Freedom isn’t free, and he will not be forgotten.

Cold Steel Swords Have Arrived at BladeOps.com

Cold Steel Katana Warrior Series
Cold Steel Katana Warrior Series

We have started, due to the huge demand, to carry a limited selection of Cold Steel Swords.  Cold Steel has a long tradition of creating battle ready swords that aren’t just pretty on a wall.  These swords are built to exacting specifications and are real performance swords that are made for actual battles. They are most often based on historical patterns with modern materials for even greater strength and reliability.  If you want a great sword–get a Cold Steel.  Over the next few weeks, you will see various swords appear in our New Products section.  If there is a specific sword you would like to order–shoot us a message and we will get one ordered in for you.

 

 

Cold Steel Marauder

Cold Steel 39LSWB Marauder
Cold Steel 39LSWB Marauder

Just in, the new Cold Steel Marauder fixed blade knife.  This battle ready combat knife got inspiration from the formidable combat knives or World War II.  Merrill’s Marauders worked deep penetration missions during WWII in the China-Burma-India region.  This knife is named in honor of Merrill and his men.  This bowie style knife features a huge blade that is extra broad.  The Japanese AUS8A blade can handle chopping, slashing, cutting, piercing, slicing, shearing, and pretty much anything else you ask it to do.  It is built for heavy duty use.  The full tang blade is encased in a double quillion sub hilt Kray Ex handle that can handle any type of weather conditions.  Plus it is comfortable in your hand.  Check out this new Cold Steel knife and see why it is taking the market by storm.