Location: Camp Victory – Baghdad, Iraq
Year : AUG 2005
I remember it as being hot and dusty, but that’s pretty much the definition of an understatement for Baghdad in the summer. Using an old school, wet bulb thermometer, we had recently registered a stunning 132 degrees so it was more than just hot. You know when you’re baking something in the oven and you open the door to check on it. Like a dummy you bend over to get a peek and that first wave of heated air makes you squint your eyes and pinch your face? Yeah, it was that kind of hot, only all day long.
We were assigned as firefighter/paramedics to protect the US military personnel assigned to Operation Iraqi Freedom. Looking back on it now, I think it was the most significant thing that I’ve done in my life. We had a motto that summed it up. Protecting Those Who Protect Peace. It was truly an honor to be the First Responder for those brave men and women as they rested on base in between combat missions.
But with that being said, it was also boring as hell. There’s an old saying in our industry that our days are made up of 99% boredom and 1% pure terror/adrenaline. That pretty much sums up the Iraq experience. From a firefighter’s perspective, our customer (the military) made for pretty good residents so we really didn’t have a lot of structure fires or cats in trees. In 2005 we had a lot of indirect fire coming at us from over the wire, but for the most part, we spent our days trying to keep busy and maintaining our training levels.
The one escape from the boredom, outside of calls to home, was mail-call.
A package or a letter from home was not only a break in the monotony, it was a reminder of why we were doing what we were doing, and why protecting our way of life is so important.
So there I was on that hot and dusty day in August of 2005, sitting in our Heavy Rescue unit outside of the US Army postal center at Camp Victory (adjacent to the Baghdad International Airport / BIAP).
I had small cardboard box in my lap and I was contemplating the irony of the fact that I needed a knife to open my box that contained a knife. I’d searched around on-line and found a really bad-ass OTF knife made by Microtech. I’d been eagerly awaiting its arrival for nearly three weeks and the time had finally come. Using the edge of a fireman’s axe, I sliced the tape from the box and unwrapped my new toy. The knife was everything I’d hoped it to be. Sleek, well made and with a hefty OTF spring that made a satisfying; “CLICK” when it sprang into action. For the next several days I abused that spring religiously. In and Out, In and Out. “Hey wanna see my new knife?” In and Out, In and Out.
As obnoxious as it was, it’s hard to resist the fun of playing around with good OTF knife. Even if it involves multiple band-aids from the self -inflicted “training” along the way.
When I think of good knives that I’ve had in my life, I think of that one and I see it in my head, with the sandy, dust filled light of a Baghdad sunrise in the background.
Looking for a high quality side open automatic from Microtech Knives? Check out the DOC collaboration series designed and built by Anthony Marfione and Mick Strider. This knife features fast, hard open and tight lock up. The firing button boasts a very unique setup that makes it virtually impossible to fire without meaning to do so. Find your favorite DOC here on our website.
The DOC Killswitch, an automatic knife collaboration project between Anthony Marfione and Mic Strider, features a fast opening blade that is built for tactical situations. The knife boasts an anodized aluminum handle with traction inserts that offers an uncompromisingly secure grip. A titanium sub lock keeps the blade securely open.
The first thing you notice about the DOC Killswitch is the unique geometry on the spear point blade. The shape gives the blade extra strength near the tip. Which makes the knife perfect for combat and tactical situations where heavy pressure is often exerted on the end of your knife blade. The blade also boasts a choil that allows you to “choke up” on the grip when you need to make controlled cuts. A set of wide, shallow jimping sits atop the spine of the blade and gives your thumb extra purchase when you are holding the knife in the choked up position.
More jimping is found along the angled butt of the handle. This allows you to get a very secure grip when you hold the knife in a reverse grip.
The blade snaps out with serious authority when the trigger button is depressed. The blade is kept securely open with a titanium sub lock. The activation button is a unique shape. When the blade is closed or open, you can swing the button over to a locked position. This will make it impossible to either open or close the blade. When you swing the button back into the active position, you are then able to depress the switch to open the blade. If the blade is open, you can depress the button, which unlocks the blade, and then close the blade with your other hand.
The handle is a classic Strider shape with three large indentations on the front scale. Grip tape is inserted into the indentations to give you an extra solid grip. The two handle scales have a large, shallow finger groove that fits your forefinger just perfectly. It also gives your pinkie finger a nice grip spot when you use the knife in a reverse grip.
An oversized pivot screw features a triangular indentation that gives the knife a great look. Each of the five smaller frame screws have a similar triangular shape.
An extra wide tip up pocket clip is found on the back scale. The pocket clip reads A. Marfione and then below that it reads M. Strider.
This fantastic automatic knife does everything you want from a serious tactical knife. It offers you a fast opening blade that locks up tight. The blade gives you maximum strength at the tip for heavy piercing cuts. The spear point blade makes this blade ideal for slashing cuts. The handle is comfortable in a variety of positions. And the materials are top notch. This auto knife is one I would recommend to a friend that was looking for a serious combat automatic knife. Find the entire line of DOC Killswitch knives from Microtech Knives here on our website. Let me know what you think of yours down below.