Buck Impact Auto Knife Review

A young Kansas blacksmith apprentice named Hoyt Buck was looking for a better way to temper steel so it would hold an edge longer. His unique approach produced the first Buck Knife in 1902. Hoyt made each knife by hand, using worn-out file blades as raw material. His handiwork was greatly appreciated during World War II. Hoyt’s eldest son Al relocated from the Pacific Northwest to San Diego California after finishing a stint in the navy a decade earlier. Hoyt, and his wife Daisy, moved in with Al and his young family in 1945 and set up shot as H.H. Buck and Son.

Following the death of his father, Al kept the fledgling custom knife business going until incorporating Buck Knives, Inc. in 1961. Al introduced his son, Chuck, to the knife business at an early age and Chuck and his wife, Lori, were both involved when the company was incorporated. In 1964, the knife industry was revolutionized with the introduction of the Model 110 Folding Hunter, making Buck Knives a leader in the field. A position we hold proudly today.

Chuck worked his way up through the company serving as President and CEO for many years before handing over the reins to his son, CJ, in 1999. Chuck remained active as Chairman of the Board until his passing in 2015. Lori now serves on the Board of Directors and is actively involved with buck promotional events throughout the US, continuing Chuck’s legacy.

CJ, the 4th generation family member to run Buck Knives and current CEO, President and Chairman, started out with the company on the production line in 1978. He has been quoted saying, “We have been helping people thrive with reliable and trustworthy edged products for over a century. Since our name is on the knife, our quality, focus, and attention to detail is very personal.”

Hoyt and Al Buck’s ingenuity may have put the company on the map. But it is their ongoing commitment to developing innovative new products and improving what they have by third and fourth generation Buck family members that have made Buck the successful knife maker it is today. Frankly, it is what their customers expect forma Buck.

 

The Blade:

The blade is made out of S30V Stainless Steel. This steel formula is made by US based Crucible. The full name is CPM S30V steel, but it so often referred to as S30V steel. It has excellent edge retention and resists rust effortlessly. It was designed in the US and is typically used of the high end premium pocket knives and expensive kitchen cutlery. The introduction of vanadium carbides brings extreme hardness into the steel alloy matrix. Dollar for dollar, this is generally regarded as one of the finest knife blade steels with the optimal balance of edge retention, harness, and toughness. However, S30V is a little bit tricky to work with or to sharpen, which is one of the only drawbacks that you are going to find in this steel. It used to be a more expensive steel, but since Crucible released CPM S30VN steel, the price has significantly released. S30V is a pretty common steel these days and it is one of my favorites for my knife’s blades.

A satin finish is the most typical knife finish. It is slightly less shiny than a polished finish, and it less expensive than both the mirror and polished finishes. It has decent corrosion resistance, but less than polish of mirror finished knives. This is a semi-shiny finish with a luster falling between bead blasted and mirror polish. The most popular finish on production knife blades, it shows fine buffing lines with two directional finishes that better display the bevels of a blade.

The blade on the Impact has a drop point blade shape. A drop point blade’s spine curves, or drops, slightly down toward its point. Its convex profile gives it strength and makes it easy to stow in a sheath, contributing to its popularity as a utility knife among pointed blade styles. Its handling characteristics resemble those of clipped point styles, but with greater thickness at the tip that produces a sharp, strong point less usable for piercing. It excels at cutting tasks and those that resemble carving techniques. The single edge blade profile has earned wide adoption as a general purpose EDC knife, and in hunting, tactical, and survival knives. You’ll also find this shape on chefs’ knives and the larger blades in Swiss Army pocket knives. The drop point blade profile creates a blade with a strong, robust tip that is easy to direct when cutting or piercing. This is ideal for everyday carry and simple chores, the drop point profile is very popular and sued on a variety of pocket knives and fixed blade knives. This is one of the most common blade types. The only downside is that this blade’s broad tip isn’t suited for piercing, especially compared to clip or spear point blades.

Buck Impact Auto Knife
Buck Impact Auto Knife

The blade on this knife has a plain edge. Plain blades are one continuous sharp edge and are for more traditional. The plain edge is also best at what most of us think of when we think of using a knife: a strong, steady pressure. In general, the plain edge is better than the serrated when the application involves push cuts. Also, the plain edge is superior when extreme control, accuracy, and clean cuts are necessary, regardless of whether or not the job is push cuts or slices. The plain edge will work better for applications like shaving, skinning an apple, or skinning a deer. All those applications involve either mostly push cuts, or the need for extreme control. Generally, the more push cuts are used, the more necessary it is for the plain edge to have a “razor polished” edge. A knife edge becomes more polished when you move to higher and higher grit stones.

 

The Handle:

The handle on the Impact Auto is made out of aluminum and rubber. Aluminum is aery durable material for knife handles. It is a low density metal that provides for a nice, hefty feel to the knife without weighing the knife down. When it’s properly texturized, an aluminum handle can provide a reasonably secure grip that is also comfortable and easy for extended use. On the downside, if you use your knife quite a bit during colder winter months, you might find the handle uncomfortably cold given its conductive properties. Aluminum is generally considered inferior to its stronger, yet more expensive brother Titanium, which tends to be found on the more premium knives. To help add grip to the handle, Buck has added a rubber inlay to the palm of the knife. The rubber will give you a secure grip in almost any environment.

The handle has a slow curve across the spine of the handle to fit comfortably in your palm. The butt of the handle is slightly flared out opt give you a better grip. At the top of the handle, there is also a flare, that works as a finger guard.

 

The Pocket Clip:

The pocket clip is a deep carry pocket clip that is statically designed for tip up carry only on the traditional side of the handle. The pocket clip is a cured clip that has a cut out at the top of the clip. The deep carry pocket clip is perfect if you are trying to conceal this knife throughout everyday tasks. The deep carry pocket clip will also keep your knife safer, because it can rest deeper and more securely in your pocket without the worry about it slipping and falling out when you are going about your everyday tasks. However, with a deep carry pocket clip, it will take slightly longer to draw out of your pocket when you do need to use it. In the majority of situations, this time is miniscule and will not make a difference, but if you are planning on using this as a tactical knife, keep that in mind.

 

The Mechanism:

The Buck Impact is an automatic knife. But it does feature a thumb hole. The first company to use the thumb hole was Spyderco, but over the years, other knife makers have jumped on the bandwagon and there is good reason for this industrial mimicry—the thumb hole works. Opening a folder equipped with a thumb hole is just like using a thumb stud. By its very design, it is ambidextrous. And many knife lovers favor a hole because, unlike a stud, it doesn’t protrude from the blade.

This is an automatic knife, which is also known as a switchblade or a pushbutton knife. This is a type of knife with a folding or sliding blade contained in the handle which is opened automatically by a lever on the handle is activated. Most switchblade designs incorporate a locking blade, in which the blade is locked against closure when the spring extends the blade to the fully opened position. The blade is unlocked by manually operating a mechanism that unlocks the blade and allows it to be folded and locked in the closed position.

Switchblade knives date from the mdi-18th century. The earliest known examples of spring loaded blades were constructed by craftsmen in Europe, who developed an automatic folding spike bayonet for use on flintlock pistol and coach guns. Examples of steel automatic folding knives from Sheffield England have crown markings that date to 1840.

However, in 1954, Democratic Representative James J Delaney of New York authored the first bill submitted to the US Congress banning the manufacture and sale of switchblades, beginning a wave of legal restrictions worldwide and a consequent decline in their popularity.

Because this is an automatic knife, you will need to know your local knife laws before purchasing or carrying this knife because it could very well be illegal where you live.

 

The Specs:

The blade on the Impact is 3.125 inches long. The overall length of this knife is 7.75 inches long with a handle length of 4.625 inches. This knife weighs in at 4.1 ounces.

 

The Pros of the Buck Impact Auto:

  • The steel has the perfect balance between hardness, toughness, and edge retention.
  • The steel is stainless, so it does resist rust effortlessly.
  • This steel has good value for the qualities that you get out of it.
  • The satin finish is a very traditional finish.
  • The drop point blade shape is a great all-purpose blade shape.
  • The drop point blade shape is very versatile because of the strong tip.
  • The drop point blade shape has a large belly that is perfect for slicing.
  • The plain edge well suited for the widest variety of tasks.
  • The aluminum handle is durable.
  • The aluminum handle is rust resistant.
  • The rubber inlay on the handle gives you plenty of grip for almost any situation.
  • The pocket clip is deep carry.
  • This is an automatic knife, so it will open quickly and efficiently.

 

The Cons of the Buck Impact Auto:

  • The S30V steel is harder to sharpen than less quality steels.
  • The drop point blade shape does not have piercing capabilities.

 

Conclusion:

Introducing Buck’s first automatic, the 898 Impact. The Impact engages with the push of a button and includes a safety slide. Once the safety switch is moved to the red, you simply push the button. The button lock style keeps the knife locked open and closed to prevent accidental deployment. The handle features a textured inlay for added grip. Weighing only 4.1 oz., this automatic knife is lightweight and easy to carry. The blade and handle are made out of very durable materials and the blade has a very durable blade shape—all of this means that this knife is going to be able to take a beating. Pick up your Buck Impact Automatic Knife today at BladeOps.

 

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