CRKT Fossil Knife Review

Columbia River Knife and Tool company, or CRKT, is an American company that is known for distinction in design, selection, and quality. For more than 20 years, CRKT has put innovation and integrity first, making a commitment to build products that inspire and endure. They collaborate with the best designers in the world and operate on a simple principle: that the greatest thing they can give their customers is Confidence in Hand. This company was founded in 1994 and is currently based in Tualatin, Oregon. This company was founded by Paul Gillespi and Rod Bremer.

CRKT did not truly take off until the Shot Show in 1997. This was when they introduced their knife the K.I.S.S. This was a small folder that had been designed by Ed Halligan and it was a success. Within the opening days of the Shot Show, the years’ worth of the knife had sold out.

CRKT produces a wide range of fixed blades and folding knives, multi tools, sharpeners, and carrying systems. They have collaborated with custom knife makers such as Ken Onion, Harold Carson, Allen Elishewitz, Pat Crawford, Liong Mah, Steven James, Greg Lightfoot, Michael Walker, Ron Lake, Tom Veff, Steve Ryan, and the Graham Brothers.

As of right now, CRKT owns fifteen different patents and they have multiple patents pending. Some of the patents that they currently own is the Outburst Assist opening mechanism, Lock Back Safety mechanism, and Veff Serrated Edges.

CRKT knives are durable, reliable, and will last a lifetime with you. They are committed to innovation, so you know that when you purchase a CRKT knife, you are purchasing a knife with the newest technology on the market. One of their newest releases is the Fossil, and it is a game changer.


The Designer:

This knife was designed by Flavio Ikoma, who is from Presidente Prudente, Brazil. He says that ever since he was a young kid, he has wanted to be a knife maker. In his adolescence, he worked on knives of the Japanese sword variety in his father’s shop. He has gone on to learn metallurgy, to work with Ken Onion, and to become a force for innovation. Flavio brought to market the revolutionary IKBS ball bearing pivot system, along with Rick Lala. He has also evolved the classic locking liner with the ILS safety, which is exclusively available from CRKT in the No Time Off knives.

CRKT Fossil Knife
CRKT Fossil Knife

The Blade:

The blade on the Fossil is made out of 8Cr13MoV steel. This is a Chinese steel that actually belongs in a series of different Cr formulas. The most quality out of the Cr steels is 9Cr, however, 8Cr is close behind. This steel is most commonly compared to AUS 8 steel. AUS 8 steel is the superior steel out of the two though. 8Cr steel is softer, less durable, and more prone to rusting and corrosion. But don’t let yourself be turned away from this steel because of that. Just because this steel doesn’t resist rust and corrosion as well as AUS 8, it is still considered to be a stainless steel and will resist rust and corrosion with the help of good maintenance and the proper environment. And because this steel is a little bit softer, it is a breeze to sharpen. Many knife sharpeners could sharpen 8Cr steel in their sleep. This steel also holds an edge very well and you can get a very fine edge on this steel. One of the biggest advantages that this steel boasts is how inexpensive it is. But, with steel, you do get what you pay for, so while this is an average steel that can get the job done, it will not excel at anything.

The finish on the 8Cr13MoV steel is a satin finish. This finish is created by sanding the steel in one direction with increasing levels of an abrasive material. This material is usually sandpaper. This finish is usually considered to be in the middle of all of the finishes. It does help to resist rust, but there are finishes that resist rust easier. And while it does cut down on glares and reflections, it is nowhere near matte. However, it is also not a super shiny finish like a mirror finish. This is a classic finish that will provide you with an elegant look. The biggest characteristic that the satin finish has it how it showcases the lines of the steel.

This steel has been carved into a drop point blade shape. This blade shape is created by having the unsharpened edge of the blade, or the back of the blade, slowly curve until it reaches the sharpened edge of the blade, forming a lowered point. The lowered, or dropped, point, is where this blade shape gets its name from. This dropped point provides the user with a variety of different advantages. One of these advantages is that with a lowered point, you have more control over your cuts and slices. This is open of the reasons that it is such a popular blade shape among hunters. They don’t have to worry about slipping or nicking any of the organs or damaging the game’s meat. One of the other advantages that the lowered point provides is that it makes it a broader point. Because of this, the knife has much more strength behind the tip, so you can take on the heavier duty tasks without worrying about snapping the point of your blade. This shape of blade is known as one of the most versatile blade shapes on the market. While the strong tip is one of the reasons it is so versatile, the biggest reason why it is so versatile is because of the large belly. This blade has a big belly with plenty of length to make slices a breeze. Most of your everyday tasks involve some form of slicing, so having a blade that can easily slice is a big feature that you should be looking for in an everyday carry blade.

On back end of the blade, near the handle, there is a cut out portion of the blade. This cut out portion adds a unique look to the blade, but you can also use it to flip the knife open if you prefer.


The Handle:

The handle on the Fossil is made out of stainless steel with a G10 overlay. Stainless steel is one of the most durable handle materials that you are going to find. It is also extremely resistant to corrosion, which does cut down on maintenance time. However, this material is not lightweight at all; it adds quite a bit of heftiness to your knife. One of the other drawbacks to a stainless steel knife handle is that it can be rather slippery. To combat this, the manufacturer has to add some sort of texture to the handle. In the Fossil’s case, CRKT has carved out dimples in the stainless steel and the G10 overlay to make it look like an aged fossil.

The stainless steel portion of the handle has a G10 overlay. G10 is a laminate composite that is made out of fiberglass. This material has similar properties to carbon fiber, except that it is much cheaper to produce. To make this material, the manufacturer takes layers of fiberglass cloth and soaks them in resin, then compresses them and bakes them under pressure. The resulting material is crazy tough, hard, very lightweight, yet still strong. Because it is such a lightweight material, it helps to keep down the weight, because the stainless steel is so heavy. G10 is actually considered to be the toughest of all the fiberglass resin laminates. To make for a solid and comfortable grip, the manufacturer will add texture to the G10. Like I mentioned, this G10 has had dimpling added to make it look like an actual fossil. The G10 overlay on the Fossil is a dark brown color, which adds a nice contrast to the silver stainless steel. Where the dimples have been formed, the G10 has more of a black color to it.

On this handle, there is a deep finger groove to provide you with a secure grip no matter what the environment is. CRKT has also added a finger guard to keep your fingers safe from slipping and cutting yourself on the sharp blade. On the butt of the handle, there is some shallow, thick jimping.


The Pocket Clip:

The pocket clip is kept in place by three small, silver screws. The silver screws and pocket clip match the rest of the hardware on this knife. This is a tip up pocket clip that can be carried on the right hand side.


The Mechanism:

This is folding knife with that sports a frame lock. The frame lock is situated with the liner inward and the tip engage the bottom of the blade. The frame lock is released by applying pressure to the frame to move it away from the blade. When it is opened, the pressure on the lock forces it to snap across the blade, engaging at its furthest point. Frame locks are known for their strength and thickness.

This knife uses a flipper mechanism to deploy the blade. The flipper is a triangular, sharks fin shaped protrusion that juts out of the back of the handle when the blade is closed. To deploy the knife, you pull back on the flipper, which puts enough of pressure on the blade to “flip” it open. Once the blade is opened, it locks into place because of the frame lock. The flipper protrusion is also the piece of the blade that turns into the finger guard when the blade is opened.

The Fossil also sports the IKBS ball bearing opening mechanism. This mechanism was invented by the designers Flavio Ikoma and Rick Lala. This is a system that sets lube ball bearings into the folding knife pivot. The result is a rapid blade deployment that is smooth and fast.

Even though this is a manual opening knife, it won’t feel old fashioned at all. This knife opens quickly, smoothly, and efficiently. Because it is a manual opening knife, there won’t be any of the pesky knife laws that come with having a switchblade.


The Specs:

The Fossil comes with a lifetime warranty. The blade on this folding knife is 3.96 inches long, with a thickness of 0.15 inches. When the knife is opened, it measures in at 8.88 inches long, and has a closed length of 4.95 inches long. This knife weighs in at 6.1 ounces.



Even though Columbia River Knife and Tool company took around three years to truly take off, they haven’t really slowed down since. They have developed a reputation of designing and making quality knives that stand the test of time. They have a commitment to innovation, so they are always trying to collaborate with the best knife makers and designers in the world. Because of this, they can provide you with some of the newest, most innovative, and ground breaking technology that is around. When you purchase one of CRKT’s knives, you know that it will be able to take a beating and survive with you throughout your adventures.

The Fossil was designed by Flavio Ikoma. This knife will really be able to take on anything that you throw at it. To start off, Flavio chose 8Cr13MoV steel, which is a durable steel that can get a crazy fine and sharp edge. This steel is able to get the job done. The blade sports a pain edge and a satin finish that effectively shows off the lines in this blade. To match a great blade, Flavio chose to make the handle out of a stainless steel that sports G10 overlays. The dimpling in the handle provides you with an exceptional grip, while also making it look like an actual fossil. This is a manual opening knife that sports a flipper, a frame lock, and the IKBS Ball Bearing Pivot System. This knife will be a fantastic addition to your knife collection. Pick yours up today at BladeOps.


CRKT Burnley Squid Knife Review

The Squid is not your typical everyday carry folding knife. From knife designer Lucas Burnley of Albuquerque, New Mexico comes this compact knife with great potential. He has based this knife on the concept of a compact pistol, meaning it can still fully function without the extra fluff. It is a tactically inspired knife that can stand up to any opposition.


CRKT Squid
CRKT Squid


As a compact knife, the Squid might be small in size, but not in stature. Listed below are the specs for this mighty knife.

  • Product Type: Folder
  • Locking Mechanism: Frame Lock
  • Overall Length: 5.70″
  • Weight:  3.50 oz.
  • Handle Length: 3.40”
  • Blade Length: 2.10″
  • Blade Thickness: 0.110″
  • Blade Steel: 8Cr13MoV
  • Blade Edge: Plain
  • Blade Style: Drop Back
  • Blade Finish: Stonewash
  • Handle Material: 2Cr13
  • Handle Color: Gray
  • Sheath Included: No
  • Lanyard Hole Included: Yes
  • Pocket Clip: Tip-Up


As you can see, the knife isn’t that large. Both in weight and in length it is small, but there is potential in the squid. In the wild, squids are pretty average in size (around 24 inches in length). However, there are those giant squids that always seem to wreak havoc in horror or action films. Although the CRKT Squid will not break into a rampage, the knife will still put up a good fight and be a great everyday tool.


Burnley Design

Burnley Knives was founded in 2003 by Lucas Burnley in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Their mission is to “create custom knives with a superlative level of design and function utilizing ever evolving techniques and materials.” Much of Burnley’s inspiration comes from spending time with his father, time out among Mother Nature, and action packed survival stories and films. Over the years, he has experimented with a range of styles to combine classical knife designs with modern materials and techniques. His goal in creating the Squid was to make a great quality knife, which is readily available to a broader spectrum of people to own and use. Even though the Burnley design is compact, it is still able to function at 100%.



While there are other opening mechanisms out in the market (spring assist, fixed, automatic, etc.) there is a reason why a folder knife is a viable tool, especially as an everyday carry. One reason a folder knife is beneficial to own is because of how quiet it opens. Another point to note is that in some places, having a spring assisted or automatic knife can get you into legal trouble whereas a folder knife will not. This isn’t true is all cases, but something to point out. One more thing to make mention of is that the more parts that move in the knife, can mean a greater potential to wear out and break down over time. Also, when compared to fixed blades, a folder can be more discrete when carrying it every day. It doesn’t draw as much attention to it compared to the attitude people have about the serious nature of fixed blades. It simply is much easier to carry around in the city. Plus a folder tends to be more compact than a fixed blade. This is especially true with the tiny size of the Squid.


Locking Mechanism

The frame lock on the CRKT Squid is a type of locking system that was first introduced with the Sebenza Folder. The Frame or Integral Lock was created by Chris Reeve of Chris Reeve Knives and first appeared on the Sebenza. Chris Reeve calls it an Integral Lock, but the common name used in the industry now is simply “Frame Lock”. The original Integral Lock was developed in 1987. It is used when a portion of the back handle is slotted in a groove on the knife to lock the knife into place. This groove is in place behind the blade to refrain it from closing. Many suggest that this is one of the best locking mechanisms for its life-long durability and its reliability. The locking system makes the Squid more reliable during use because of its ability to resist slipping while retaining its strength.

The Frame Lock is a modification of the Liner Lock created by Michael Walker to simplify and strengthen the design. This is done by removing the handle scales and thin liners from the knife and using thicker liners to serve as both the handles, and the integrated locking bar. Frame locks are stronger than normal liner locks and are simpler in design. While holding the knife, the lock is being reinforced since it is integrated into the handle. Having this type of lock improves the overall quality of the knife.


Blade Style

The drop point on the Squid is an all-purpose blade that is able to stand up to anything that it comes across. Its blade is one of the most popular blade shapes in use today. The unsharpened edge of the knife runs straight from the handle to the tip of the knife in a slow curved manner. The large edge for cutting makes it perfect for slicing. Another advantage that the drop point has is its tip. The point on the blade is sharp and is thicker than other styles, thus allowing for a stronger tip. The point is also great when it comes to controlling the blade. Accuracy is key, especially when it comes to fine tune cutting. The drop point is an all-around good blade to have on a knife and is popular on knives because of the controllable point and large slicing area.


Blade Steel

The steel used in the blade on the CRKT Squid is 8Cr13MoV stainless steel. For a knife that is very inexpensive, 8Cr13MoV is a tough steel to compete with. It is a Chinese steel with similar qualities to the Japanese AUS-8 stainless steel. 8Cr13Mov and its variations are excellent steels considering how little it costs to produce. Similar to AUS-8, 8Cr13MoV lacks the edge retention of the higher end steels. This is considerable based on the cost of making the steel. It can, however, take a sharp edge. It is considerably tough, and corrosion resistant. Owning a stainless steel knife does not require too much attention. Even though they are a little harder to sharpen, stainless steel blades are a popular choice because of the environment where the knife will be used; i.e. working in less than ideal weather conditions, dealing with corrosive liquids, etc.


Blade Finish

One of my all-time favorite finishes is a nice stonewash blade. It is the finish on the CRKT Squid. The process of getting a blade to look this way begins when the blade is rolled and tumbled with pebbles and an acid of sorts, then smoothed. In theory, it can hide scratches or other abrasions to the blade. This is a favorable characteristic that many knife owners desire. Because of the tumbling process to create this finish, it looks as if there are already hundreds of markings on it. Yet, the markings are done in a natural way to form a work of art. Similar to a snowflake, no two stonewashes are the same. The finish has a different look to it. It is able to reflect direct light off the surface blade. With all of the noticeable artistic markings on the knife, there is no need to worry about other markings that may come with using the knife. The knife can be used for its intended purpose of cutting and doing any other type of work while taking on any marking. Some suggest that because of the process, a stonewashed knife can become more resistant to rust as well. The acid oxidation it goes through in the process enhances a blade’s rust resistance with a stable oxide barrier between the steel and its surrounding. Another benefit of stonewashing a blade is their low maintenance and their ability to preserve their original look overtime. I am in love with this blade. It is amazing to look at, and it comes with benefits.



Stainless steel handles, such as that on the Squid, contain a minimum of 10-13% chromium. The chromium in the steel alloy helps to make the knife corrosive resistant. Chromium creates a barrier to oxygen and moisture which makes is rust resistant, but not rust proof. While it does provide excellent durability and resistance to corrosion, it is not particularly lightweight. Stainless steel handles can also be rather slick. The main advantages to having a stainless steel handle is that it is strong, durable, and corrosion resistant. The Squid is practically made solely from stainless steel. This will help extend the life of the knife. The pocket clip on the Squid runs half the length of the handle. Though not quite a discreet carry, it is pretty close. Though the clip is only available in one position, it still works great for any knife user out there.


Small Everyday Carry

As an everyday carry knife, it is important to know how the CRKT Squid feels when being carried around all the time. Especially as a small carry knife. Those criteria include its carry depth, its weight, its thickness and width, and its appearance.

Carry Depth

The CRKT Squid is comfortable to carry in your pocket. The slim design takes up minimal pocket real-estate. Because of its smaller size, it sacrifices the potential for a really secure and comfortable grip.  When closed, the knife is 3.40 inches long. You’ll find that most comfortable carry knives are anywhere between 3.5 to 5 inches long when closed. The knife rests just near the edge that range. Frequently, before any knife purchase, I ask myself, “Will the knife fit in my pant pocket?” But I also ask “Will the knife fall out of my pocket?” The knife isn’t too deep when resting in the pocket. However, the pocket clip allows the majority of the knife to fit within my pocket.


One of the more important aspects to consider when choosing an everyday carry is its weight. One of the worst feelings that can happen on a day to day basis is carrying something heavy in your pocket. A good knife weight ranges anywhere from as little as 3.0 ounces to 5.0 ounces. The CRKT Squid barely fits right into this range. Weighing in at 3.50 ounces, this knife is fairly lightweight. For the size of the knife, it is a good idea to take precaution when carrying it around. Because of its lack of weight, the knife has a greater potential to fly out of your pocket.

Thickness and Width

Like we mentioned before, the knife is very slim. At most, the knife is just about an inch thick. And the knife is just about a quarter of an inch wide from handle scale to handle scale. There is hardly anything to the CRKT Squid.


The goal for the CRKT Squid is a simple look, nothing to extreme. It isn’t too dull, or to flamboyant. The conservative look is one of the advantages that this knife has. One other goal for this knife was to make it legal to carry all over the place. Though you are still responsible in keeping the law, it’s nice to know that there are some people out there trying to help you to have a decent knife that is legal, and useful.


The Test

The CRKT Squid is a tough knife that can the job done. To best show you how it gets the job done, there are certain tests that the blade undergoes to demonstrate its skill. Below are the results of these tests.

Paper- The Squid was easily able to cut through multiple layers of paper. But because of the tip on the blade, penetration wasn’t as good as other blade styles (such as a dagger or tanto). Shredding all of that unwanted mail will be easy with the Squid.

Cardboard- This is probably where the Squid excelled the most. The cuts were much simpler than those of the other tests. I was worried that the size of the Squid would prevent me from using the knife to its full capacity. Nevertheless, I was taken back.

Plastic- Again, the penetration problem persisted primarily in cutting the plastic. But once it had pushed through the tough material, it was easily able to slice through the rest of the plastic.

Rope/Paracord- Cutting the rope was pretty normal when compared to other knives. It got the job done, but nothing too impressive.



CRKT and Lucas Burnley did an excellent job at creating an inexpensive knife that is highly functional. I would be surprised if anyone couldn’t own this knife. It is supposedly legal everywhere, it is inexpensive, the size is small and comfortable, and it is good quality for what it is worth. I highly recommend this knife. Pick up the CRKT Squid today!