SOG Strat Ops Auto Knife Review

Unlike the usual history of a knife company, SOG began years before the company actually became a company. And, to make the story more unique, SOG began in Vietnam. There was a group of highly classified US Special Ops that were officially known as MACV-SOG. The members of this group were working primarily in the jungle of Vietnam, so they needed special knives to be able to actually accomplish tasks and survive. Years later, around 1986, Spencer Frazer, who was a young knife designer, came across the story of that special ops units and was inspired by the knife that they used. He had a mission: to reproduce the original SOG Bowie knife and help to pay tribute to the special ops unit that created it. He named his company SOG Specialty Knives. This replication, which was a commemorative model, became extremely popular and soon became a full line of innovative tools. These knives and tools have been field proven by US Special Forces and even honored as the Navy SEAL knife of choice.

Now SOG knives are carried with confidence even when you are carrying them in the most demanding of situations. These knives and tools have been forged out of tradition, hardened in the field, honed for you. SOG says, “So whether you’re protecting others or leading an epic hunting expedition, tackling one of life’s everyday challenges, or facing your most extreme conditions yet, lead the way with SOG.” And lucky for us, SOG has just come out with another durable knife. They call it the Strat Ops Auto.

 

The Blade:

The blade on this knife has been forged out of S35VN steel. This steel is a high end steel that has been developed by Crucible and Chris Reeve. Years ago, Crucible released S30V steel which became known as one of the best blade steels that money could buy. This steel was developed specifically for knives, which gave the user all of the qualities that they could ask for from their blade steel. This steel had the perfect balance between toughness, hardness, and edge retention. The steel was also extremely resistant to corrosion. There was one drawback to the steel though: it was relatively tricky to sharpen. So in 2009, Crucible and Chris Reeves upgraded this near perfect steel and named it the S35VN steel. They added Niobium, which is where the N comes from in the name. This Niobium and the much finer grain structure that they chose to use makes the blade much easier to sharpen. Not only that, but they also upgraded the other features of the steel. Now, the steel is slightly tougher, while still having the hardness behind it. And it’s not brittle, which is normally a problem when a steel is extremely hard. One of the other aspects that have been upgraded with S35VN steel is that it is even more resistant to corrosion. All in all, this is one of the best steels out there. It will give you a durable blade that is able to take on all your challenges.

This steel has a Hardcased Black finish. This finish provides the steel with a black look, which cuts down on glares and reflections. Having a finish on the steel helps to cut back on rust or corrosion, even though the S35VN doesn’t necessarily need the help. This finish adds a little bit of hardness and a little bit of durability, further enhancing the excellent steel.

The blade shape on this knife is a straight back blade. This is one of the simplest shapes for a knife. Like the name implies, the back, or unsharpened edge of this blade shape is straight. The sharpened edge starts at the bottom of the tang, follows a straight line for a little bit, then curves up to meet the point of the blade. There are a handful of advantages that come with having this blade shape. One of the biggest is that this is a very strong blade shape because the spine is thicker. Another big benefit of this blade shape is that you can rest your thumb on the back of the knife, which adds pressure when slicing or chopping. Because the straight back is dull, it won’t hurt your thumb when you are adding a lot of pressure. Another big benefit to this blade shape is that it has a large belly, which gives you plenty of ability to slice, cut, and perform all of your daily activities.

On the unsharpened edge of the Strat Ops, there is some thick jimping near the handle area.

 

The Handle:

The handle on this knife is made out of linen micarta. The most popular version of a micarta material is a linen micarta. This is when thin layers of linen cloths are soaked in a phenolic resin, which produces a material that is not only strong, but also lightweight, and provides you with a little bit classier of a look when being compared to G-10. When this material was first introduced to the world, it had been designed as an electrical insulator. However, it is now one of the best plastics out there for making knife handles. However, there are a few drawbacks to the linen micarta. One of the biggest disadvantages is that linen micarta really has no surface texture. To provide the user with a secure grip, the manufacturer has to hand carve or etch texture into the knife handle. Because this takes time and hand labor, this increases the cost of this handle material steeply. On the Strat Ops, SOG has etched four deep grooves into the palm of the knife handle. This will provide you with a secure grip, whether you are in a wet or dry environment. They also carved in the “SOG” initials. Other benefits of a linen micarta knife handle is that Micarta is extremely hard to scratch because of how hard the material actually is. Compared to G-10 or Carbon Fiber, it holds up very well. One of the other drawbacks to this knife handle material is that it does tend to be brittle. This is because the linen is all facing one direction, so while it is extremely strong in that direction, when it is being stressed in the other directions, it does have the tendency to crack or break. If this handle material is impacted with a hard or sharp object, it might crack or break. SOG says that the more this handle is used, the better it will look.

The Strat Ops sports stainless steel liners.

 

The Pocket Clip:

The pocket clip on this knife is a low carry clip. This clip is skeletonized with “SOG” carved in the middle of it. This is a reversible pocket clip, which means that you can carry it on the left or right side, depending on which is more comfortable for you. This helps to make this knife ambidextrous friendly. However, you cannot reverse whether you carry this knife tip up or down.

 

The Mechanism:

This is an automatic folding knife. Like always, because this is an

SOG Strat Ops Automatic
SOG Strat Ops Automatic

automatic knife, and automatic knives have some strict laws surrounding them, make sure that you know your local knife laws before purchasing or carrying this knife. This knife won’t be legal in all states, cities, or areas. An automatic knife is a knife that has its blade stored inside of the handle. Also inside of the handle are a variety of small mechanisms and moving parts. One of the most important mechanisms in the knife is a spring with tension on it. When you push the button on the handle to deploy the knife, the tension of the spring is released and the blade pops out of the handle and locks into place. This lock helps to keep your blade locked into place while you are using it to help avoid accidents and injuries. When you want to close the knife, you push down on the handle button again and fold the blade back down into the handle. One of the reasons that many people love automatic knives is that they are quick, efficient, and easy to use. You can quickly have your knife deployed in a tactical, survival, or self-defense situation. However, because there are many inner mechanisms and moving parts, an automatic knife is more prone to breaking. Maintaining an automatic knife will take a little extra time, but if you treat your knife right, your knife will treat you right as well.

 

The Specs:

The blade on the Strat Ops is 3.5 inches long with a blade thickness of 0.11 inches long. When the knife is opened, it measures in at 7.9 inches long overall, with a closed length of 4.4 inches. This knife weighs in at 3.70 ounces. The Strat Ops is made in the USA.

 

The Designer:

SOG is a unique company because the founder of the company is also the chief designer: Spencer Frazer. As a kid, he was always filled with curiosity for the world around him. He was constantly intrigued with the ways that the world worked. When he was in Boy Scouts, he started to become interested in knives and axes. However, it would still be years before he created a career out of knives and axis. He actually graduated college as a math and science major and began his own company in the professional audio industry. He also worked with the aerospace defense industry, in the Top Secret Black Projects Division making tools and models. Around that same time, he worked in the modern art movement and met with many of the top artists. When he became interested in the SOG Bowie knife, he felt like all of his life experiences had led him to this and prepared him to recreate it. When he first started the company, he had only designed that knife. Since then, he has gone on to create many different knives that have been innovative and durable. He has also won many industry awards.

 

The Pros of the Strat Ops Auto:

  • The steel is a high end steel that has the perfect balance between toughness, hardness, and edge retention.
  • The steel is easy to sharpen.
  • Because of the fine grain structure, the finishing look on the blade is more polished than with many other steel options.
  • The steel is extremely resistant to corrosion.
  • The Hardcased Black finish provides the steel with extra corrosion resistance, hardness, and durability, all while cutting down on glares and reflections.
  • The straight back has a strong spine.
  • The straight back provides you with a big enough belly to slice, which makes it great for everyday use.
  • The linen micarta handle is durable and hard.
  • The linen micarta handle will provide you with a great grip, whether in wet or dry conditions.
  • The pocket clip is reversible, helping to make this knife ambidextrous friendly.
  • The automatic knife works quickly and efficiently to deploy your blade.
  • The blade locks securely into place after it has been deployed.

 

The Cons of the Strat Ops Auto:

  • The pocket clip is not deep carry.
  • The pocket clip cannot be tip carry reversed.

 

Conclusion:

SOG has been a reliable company since the 1980’s. Spencer Frazer has designed many reliable knives that have become extremely popular and have helped many people in a variety of circumstances. These knives are built to last whether you are in a survival situation or just going through your daily tasks.

This new knife combines exceptional steel, a great, versatile blade shape, and a durable handle to give you a knife that will last through the years. The all black knife looks classy and sleek making this knife a perfect addition to your collection. You can get your Strat Ops here on our website.

 

 

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SOG Terminus Knife Review

The history of SOG Specialty Knives began years ago in Vietnam. There was a highly classified US special ops unit that was known as MACV-SOG. The members in this unit carried a unique combat knife because their covert missions were in the jungle. It was in 1986, years after this group existed, that Spencer Frazer happened across the bowie knife and founded SOG Specialty knives. His founding mission with the company was to reproduce the original SOG Bowie knife and pay tribute to the special ops unit that created it.

What began as a single knife soon became a full line of innovative tools. Not only that, but this line of tools has been field proven by US Special Forces and has even been honored as the Navy SEAL knife of choice. Now, SOG knives are carried with confidence into the most demanding situations. So whether you’re protecting others, leading an epic hunting expedition, tackling one of life’s everyday challenges, or facing your most extreme conditions yet, lead the way with SOG. “Forged out of tradition, hardened in the field, honed for you.”

Spencer Frazer is not only the founder of SOG, but also the chief designer. He was born in 1955 and was always a creative kid that had a curiosity for how things worked. He joined the boy scouts when he was older and gained an affinity for knives and axes. He later graduated from UCLA as a math and science major and then started his own company in the professional audio industry. He went on to work in the aerospace defense industry, in the top Secrete Black Projects Division. Spencer has also been involved in the modern art movement and even went on to work in product development creating toys. He says that all of these life experiences converged the moment he first saw the Vietnam SOG Bowie knife. He says, “The knife was magical in how it looked and felt. You could see the history as well as the function aspects of the knife.” He quickly made a goal to reproduce this knife and has definitely succeeded. Spencer says that SOG “doesn’t settle for ordinary. We never did, and we never will.”

SOG has just released a brand new knife called the Terminus. There are two versions of the same design and both of them are going to be game changers.

 

The Blade:

The blades on these two knives are both made out of CTS-BD1 steel. This is a carpenter’s steel. Something that is very unique about the steel is that it is melted in a vacuum. This is a high carbon chromium steel that provides stainless properties with high hardness and excellent wear resistance. This steel has a hardness of Rockwell C 58-60. This steel has been used for cutlery, ball bearings, and small machinery parts that are normally subjected to high wear conditions, because it can last. This steel has a fairly high corrosion resistance and can resist corrosion from mild atmospheres as well as fresh water, steam, ammonia, and many organic materials.

The finish on both of the knives is where the versions start to differ. One of the versions, the blade sports a dual directional satin finish. The satin finish is created by sanding the knife in one direction with increasing levels of a fine abrasive. In the case of this knife, after the blade has been sanded in one direction, it will then be sanded in the other direction. The satin finish works to showcase the lines in the steel and is one of the most popular blade finishes that you can find. This is a classic blade finish that has a medium level of shine—it is more matte than a mirror finish, but shinier than a matte finish. A satin finish actually works to reduce the glares and reflections that your knife will come across.

On the other version of the knife, the blade sports a black hard cased finish. One of the main purposes for this type of finish is to add a sleek, black look to the blade. This effectively cuts down on glares and reflections, and gives you more of a stealth look to it. However, it is a coating finish, and like all coating finishes, it has the tendency to chip, scratch, or flake off. The finish does work to reduce rusting and corroding that will happen to your blade over time.

Both versions of the knife sport a clip point blade shape. This is a great all-purpose blade shape as well as being one of the most popular blade shapes on the market. This blade shape has often been confused with a drop point blade shape, because they are both very versatile, great for most tasks, and very popular. However, they do sport a handful of differences and we will go over those differences today. To form the shape of a clip point, the back, or unsharpened, edge of the knife runs straight form the handle and then stops about halfway up the knife. It then turns and continues to the point of the knife. This area looks to be cut out, or clipped out, and is referred to as the “clip”, which is where this blade shape got its name. This clipped out area can be straight or curved, but on the Terminus, it is a straight portion. Because of this clipped out area, the point on this blade shape is lowered, which provides you with more control when cutting or slicing with this knife. The biggest difference between a drop point and a clip point blade shape is the point. On a drop point, the tip is also lowered, however it is broader and sports more metal near the tip, providing you with more strength behind the tip. Because there is more metal near the tip, you do lose out on most stabbing capabilities with a drop point tip.  A clip point has a lowered point but it is skinnier and sharper. While this is a drawback because the tip is now weaker and more prone to breaking, it is also an advantage because you do have the stabbing capabilities once again. Because the tip is controllable, sharp and thinner at the spine, a clip point knife lends itself to quicker stabbing with less drag during insertion and faster withdrawal. One of the other reasons that a clip point blade shape is so versatile is because of the large belly area that lends itself perfectly for slicing. With a clip point blade shape, you will be prepared for all of the expected, everyday tasks that you happen across, but you will also be prepared for the unexpected moments and emergencies.

The blade on both versions of the Terminus sports a straight edge, which is the more traditional edge and lends itself to completing a wider variety of tasks.

On the unsharpened edge of the knife, there is a row of thick jimping that offers improved control during use.

 

The Handle:

Both versions of the Terminus have a handle that is made out of G10. But, each version of the knife has a different colored handle.

G10 is a grade of Garolite that is a laminate composite made of fiberglass. This material has similar properties to carbon fiber, but because it is only slightly inferior, you can get it for a fraction of the cost. However, it does still have to be cut and machined into shape, which is not as economical as the injection molding process used in FRN handles, so it still has a significant cost to it. To make this material, the manufacturer takes layers of fiberglass cloth and soaks them in a resin. The next step is to compress the layers of the soaked cloth and then baking them under pressure. The material that you get from this process is super tough, very hard, still lightweight, and strong. An interesting fact: G10 is considered to be the toughest of all the fiberglass resin laminates and even stronger than Micarta. However, it is more brittle than these other materials as well. To add texture to give you a secure grip on the Terminus, SOG has added intense checkering to the handle of this knife. To add to your grip on this knife, SOG has also added an extremely elongated finger groove to the bottom of the handle. To keep your fingers safe, there is also a finger guard.

On the version with the satin blade, the handle is a tan color with black hardware. On the version with the black hard cased blade, the handle is black with black hardware.

 

The Pocket Clip:

The pocket clip on these knives match the color of the blade. These pocket clips are the classic SOG skeletonized pocket clips, because in the middle, they have carved their logo. These pocket clips are reversible, which does help to make this knife design ambidextrous. The clip is also a low carry clip, so it won’t be quite as concealed as a deep carry clip.

 

The Mechanism:

This is a folding knife that sports a slip joint locking mechanism. The slip joint is one of the most commonly found types of locking mechanisms. This type of locking system is also very commonly seen in Swiss Army Knives. These knives typically take two hands to open and close the knife safely. They’re made up of a spring bar and a specially shaped blade. To open the knife, you pull on the blade to overcome the pressure form the

SOG Terminus
SOG Terminus

spring, snapping the blade into place. To close it, make sure your fingers are out of the ay of the sharp edge and push back down. One of the main advantages to this type of locking mechanism is the legality. They are also nice to carry because they are simple and easy to use. However, in technical terms, they don’t sport a true “lock”, so this type of mechanism is not the best if you are taking on the heavier duty tasks.

The terminus sports a nail nick, which is one of the oldest forms of knife opening systems. This type of opening system is pretty difficult to open one handedly. The nail nick is a small groove that has been carved into the top of the blade. This provides you with a divot that you can use to get a grip on and flick the knife open.

 

The Specs:

The blade on the Terminus is an even three inches long, with a blade thickness of 0.11 inches. The overall length of the knife is seven inches long, with a closed length of four inches. This knife weighs in at 2.9 ounces. The country of origin for the Terminus is China.

 

Conclusion:

SOG has a reputation of designing and manufacturing durable and reliable knives that have been filed tested for you. These knives are going to get you through your everyday tasks as well as the unexpected situations and through all of your adventures.

The Terminus is an all-purpose slip joint folding knife that is legal in many places. It features a quality 3 inches CTS Bd1 stainless steel blade and g10 handles. Slip joint knives are easier to clean, maintain, and have fewer mechanical bits to get dirty and cause problems. The versatile clip point BD1 blade features a straight edge and a nail nick for opening. Textured G10 handles and jimping on the blade offer improved control during use. The small guard on the blade prevents accidental closure of the blade on fingers. Its slim profile makes it easy to carry with or without the reversible low carry pocket clip. In many places around the world including parts of Europe and cities like New York City, folding knives that lock open are not legal to carry. Knife carry laws vary by region, so make sure to consult your local laws for specific details.

The Terminus is ready to take on your life challenges with you.  You can find the sand handle version here and the black handle version here.

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SOG TAC Ops Automatic Knife Review

SOG has an interesting history. Instead of the usual beginning to a knife company, SOG’s story actually began in Vietnam. There was a highly classified US special ops unit, with the name of MACV-SOG, where the members would carry a unique combat knife that would last the challenges of the jungle. Fast forward to 1986, where Spencer Frazer was inspired by these specialty knives. Because of them, he founded SOG Specialty Knives. Spencer’s founding mission was to reproduce the original SOG Bowie knife and pay tribute to the special ops unit that created it. He achieved this goal, and the company quickly went from being a single commemorative model to a full line of innovative tools. These knives and tools are field proven by US Special Forces, and have even received the honor of the Navy SEAL knife of choice.

To this day, SOG knives are carried with confidence in any situation, from everyday carry knives, to some of the most demanding situations. “Forged out of tradition, hardened in the field, honed for you.” With this slogan, you can be confident in purchasing and using a SOG knife. These knives are going to help you accomplish whatever task you need it to. And luckily enough for us, SOG has just released a new knife: The Tac Ops Auto.

 

The Blade:

The blade on this knife has been carved out of CPM S35VN steel. This blade steel was introduced to the knife community in 2009 by Crucible and Chris Reeve. This is a slightly superior version of the S30V steel that they had previously created just for knives. To make it a more superior steel, they used a finer grain structure and actually added small quantities of niobium, which is where they get the N in the name from. By using the finer grain structure, they were able to make this steel easier to sharpen, which is one of the only drawbacks to the S30V steel.  They also improved the toughness of the steel, while maintaining the strength levels. This steel has all the abilities to maintain an excellent edge for long periods of time while also resisting rust and corrosion easily. This steel was also designed specifically for knives, so you know that you are getting all of the qualities you could want in a blade’s steel. The previous version (S30V) was regarded as one of the finest blade steels because it provides you with the best balance of edge retention, hardness, and toughness, so just imagine how great this superior version will be.

This steel has been finished with a hardcased black finish. This provides the steel with a sleek black color, more durability, and more resistance to corrosion.

The blade shape on this knife is a straight back blade shape. This knife has a wide curve towards the bottom of the blade. And of course, the back of the blade is completely straight. This is one of the simplest blade shapes. On the SOG Tac Ops, there is some jimping located on the unsharpened edge of the blade, near the handle. The straight back blade shape has a few advantages to it. One is that this is a strong blade shape, so you are going to be able to chop or cut through thicker materials. And, because the back of the blade is flat, the knife can easily be batoned. Because the sharpened edge of the blade is so curved, you can easily skin, slice, and cut with the blade. The tip is oriented towards the top of the blade, but you can actually still use this for drilling. This blade shape is a great all around shape for hunting, survival, and camping. All in all, the two biggest advantages to this blade shape is the strength that is behind the knife, because of the thick spine, and the ability to rest your thumb or fingers on the dull edge of the knife for added pressure while cutting or chopping.

 

The Handle:

The handle on this knife is made out of linen micarta, which is the most common versions of micarta. Micarta is made by soaking thin layers of linen clothes in a phenolic resin. This process will produce a material that is strong, lightweight, and has more personality than the similar G-10. This material was actually originally introduced as an electrical insulator, but is one of the best plastics that you could make a knife handle out of. While this is material does provide you with some excellent benefits, there are a few drawbacks to linen micarta. One of the biggest is that it has no surface texture whatsoever; it is extremely smooth, which makes it very slippery. To combat the fact that linen micarta provides you with almost no grip, the manufacture has to use hand labor to carve texture into the knife. On the Tac Ops, SOG has carved five deep grooves going down the length of the handle. And, they also carved out their initials “SOG” into the handle. With these carvings in the knife, you will have an excellent grip on your knife in wet or dry conditions. Because of the hand labor, the cost of linen micarta goes is pretty expensive, which does add cost to the knife overall. Some of the other benefits of linen micarta is that it is a very hard material that is hard to scratch. Micarta has a reputation of being easy to scratch, because to add texture, the manufacturer has to “scratch it up”. This is not a true statement; it is so hard to scratch and will hold up better than G-10 or carbon fiber. However, just like G-10, linen micarta is a brittle material. This is because the linen is all going in one direction, so while it is extremely strong in that direction, when it gets stressed in other ways, it has the tendency to break. If your knife handle is bumped against a hard or sharp object, the handle does have a tendency to break or chip. The linen micarta handle on the Tac Ops is black.

Another aspect of the knife handle that provides you with a quality grip is that there are deep finger grooves going down the length of the handle. These grooves help the handle contour perfectly in your palm. This is a comfortable knife to hold and use, even for long periods of time.

 

The Pocket Clip:

The pocket clip that is included on this knife is black to blend in with the handle, the blade, and the hardware. This is a skeletonized pocket clip, with an outline of “SOG” carved into the middle of the pocket clip. This is a low carry pocket knife. This pocket clip is a reversible pocket clip, which makes it ambidextrous friendly, because you are able to carry it on your right or left side.

 

The Mechanism:

This is a folding automatic knife. Like always, because this is an automatic knife, or a switchblade, there are some strict rules and laws surrounding it. Switchblades are not legal in all areas or states, so before purchasing this knife and definitely before carrying this knife, make sure that you know your local knife laws. An automatic knife is a knife that has its blade stored inside of its handle. When you push the button that is on the handle of the Tac Ops, it releases the pressure on the spring inside of the handle and deploys the blade. The blade will then lock into place, so that

SOG TAC Ops Knife
SOG TAC Ops Knife

you don’t have to worry about it collapsing during use. To close the knife, you push the button down and fold the blade back into the handle. There are a couple of major advantages to having an automatic blade. One of them is that you can open your knife quicker than if it was a purely manual knife. However, there are also some drawbacks, one I already covered: it is not legal in all states or cities. Another is that there is are many small, moving parts inside of the handle that have the ability to rust or corrode. If these parts do rust, the mechanism can work slower, or not work at all. You just have to make sure that you are maintaining and up keeping your knife, including the inner mechanisms to maintain its high quality.

 

The Specs:

The Tac Ops is made in the United States of America. The blade on this knife is 3.5 inches long with a blade thickness of 0.11 inches. The overall length of the Tac Ops is 8.2 inches long, with a closed length measuring in at 4.7 inches long. This knife weighs 4.6 ounces.

 

The Pros of the Tac Ops Auto:

  • The steel chosen for the blade is a superior steel.
  • The steel has a fine grain which makes sharpening easier and gives the finished product a more polished look.
  • This steel resists rust and corrosion effortlessly.
  • This steel has a high toughness, without sacrificing any of its strength.
  • This steel maintains its edge for long periods of time.
  • Because this steel has been specifically designed for knives, it provides you with all of the qualities that you could desire in a blade.
  • The finish on the blade is a hardcased black finish, helping the blade to resist corrosion while also adding strength and durability.
  • The straight back blade shape provides you with a thicker steel, thus more strength.
  • Because the back is straight and unsharpened, you can easily rest your fingers or thumbs on it to add more pressure.
  • There is a large, curved belly, which is excellent for slicing or skinning.
  • This blade is an excellent all around blade.
  • The linen micarta handle is strong while still maintaining its lightweight characteristics.
  • The linen micarta handle is hard to scratch up.
  • The finger grooves contour perfectly in your palm, making this a very comfortable knife to use.
  • You will have a secure grip on this knife always, whether it is in wet or dry conditions.
  • The pocket clip is reversible.
  • The automatic knife opens quickly and efficiently.
  • This knife is made in the USA.

 

Cons of the Tac Ops Auto:

  • The steel is one of the more expensive options on the market.
  • The tip is fine, which makes it more prone to snapping off if used incorrectly.

 

Conclusion:

Spencer Frazer based his original knife design off of the highly specialized special ops group that had to battle in the jungle. These knives were built to be durable and capable of accomplishing almost any survival task. After his first knife was such a hit, he expanded his product base and his knives have been widely popular. His company has developed a reputation of producing classic knives that are able to stand up to almost any task that you can throw at it. SOG has recently released a new knife called the Tac Ops Auto.

Spencer started this knife off with a superior steel. This steel has been designed specifically for knives, so you know that you are getting all of the benefits out of it. It has the perfect balance between strength, toughness, and edge retention, all while being easy to sharpen and very resistant to corrosion. The blade is finished with a black finish. The straight back blade shape provides the user with strength to perform most survival tasks while having the belly for your daily tasks. The linen micarta handle is black to match everything else, while providing you with strength without weighing you down. The reversible pocket clip is an excellent addition.  Get your TAC Ops knife here at BladeOps.

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SOG Sync Belt Buckle Review

Spencer Frazer, the man who founded SOG had a unique mission when he started his company. He had found the SOG Bowie knife, which is the knife that members of a highly classified US Special Ops unit carried. The knife had been designed for this specific group, MACV-SOG, because they were working on covert missions in the Vietnam jungles. Spencer’s mission was to reproduce the original SOG Bowie knife and pay tribute to the special ops unit that created it. SOG Specialty Knives began as a single commemorative model but quickly expanded to become a full line of innovative tools. These tools are filed proven by US Special Forces and have even been honored as the Navy SEAL knife of choice. Now when you carry a SOG knife, you can carry it with confidence, knowing that it will stand up to the most extreme conditions and craziest adventures. SOG tools are forged out of tradition, hardened in the field, and honed for you.

SOG has recently released a brand new series of multi tools. This series is called the Sync Belt Buck series. Right now, it has two separate multi tools called the Sync I and the Sync II. These will help you get almost any job done and are a fantastic addition to your tool collection.

 

The Steels:

The Tool Steel:

The steel that has been used for these multi tools is 5Cr15MoV stainless steel. This is a Chinese steel that comes from the Cr steel series. This is a low end steel, but because of that, it is very inexpensive. This inexpensive property is what helps to keep the cost of the entire tool down. This is a very soft steel that does not hold its edge for long periods of time. However, because of its softness, this steel is extremely easy to sharpen. This steel is widely used to make kitchen knives, high end scissors, folding knives, and hunting knives because it is very resistant to staining and rusting. The Rockwell Hardness on this steel is around a 54-56. However, the bigger the knife or tool is, the softer this steel will be.

The Handle Steel:

The handle is made out of a stainless steel. This is a very durable material for a handle material. Another major benefit of having a stainless steel handle is that it is very resistant to corrosion. However, stainless steel is a heavier material. Because the handle is made out of stainless steel, you are going to be able to feel your tool in your pocket or wherever you are keeping it. The stainless steel really does add a significant amount of weight. However, because the tool is on the smaller side, it’s not going to feel like a rock in your pocket, and will add some desired heftiness. One of the other drawbacks to stainless steel is that it is a pretty slippery material that does not provide you with exceptional grip. To combat this, SOG has added jimping along the sides of the handles when the tool is unfolded. There are also some etchings along the handles to help give you a good grip. All in all, SOG has worked with the stainless steel very well and you will be able to have a secure grip on it at all times.

 

The Finishes:

The tool and handle steel have been finished with a bead blasted finish. This finish is created by blasting small ceramic or glass beads at the steel with a high pressure. This finish creates an even gray finish. This finish works to reduce reflections and glares because it does create an even matte surface. However, because the bead blasting does create micro abrasions in the steel, the tool will be more likely to rust or corrode. Because of this, you do need to make sure that you are maintaining and up keeping this tool or else it will rust.

 

The Purposes/Design:

The Syncs are multi tools that have been designed to be easily worn. The Syncs have a detachable base that can be worn as a belt buckle or even clipped onto a backpack or boot. Because of the design, you can be sure to always have your multi tool with you. You can easily detach the tool with only one hand, but it will stay locked and secure when it has been clipped on and is not needed.

 

The Designer:

Spencer Frazer is the man behind SOG. He just so happens to also be the head designer. Since he was a young kid, he has always bene interested in the way that the world works. When he was in boy scouts, he gained an interest for knives and axes, but he never really considered making them a career until much later. He graduated with a math and science major and actually began his own company in the professional audio industry. This is when he learned to work with different materials and build models and prototypes. He went on to work in the aerospace defense industry as a R&D tool/die and model maker. Around the same time as that, he became involved in the modern art movement and met many of the top artists. During this time of his life, he learned a lot about scale and color. He says that he felt like all of his life experiences converged the moment that he saw the Vietnam SOG Bowie knife. This is the knife that encouraged him to start his own company as a knife designer. Since then, he has designed hundreds of innovative, ground breaking tools.

 

The Sync I:

The Specs:

This product originated in china. It has a closed length of 2.4 inches and weighs in at 2.6 ounces. This multi tool sports 11 different tools. The Sync I fits belts up to 1 3/8 inches.

The Tools:

  1. The Awl:

The awl comes out of the left side of the handle when the tool has been unfolded. This tool comes out of the butt of the handle. An awl is a long, pointed spike that can be used for making holes in wood or making markings on wood.

  1. The Blade:

The blade on this tool is located at the butt of the left side of the handle. This is a straight edged blade.

  1. The Bolt/Nut Gripper:

This tool is located at the top of the unfolded tool, right in the center. The pliers actually make up the framing for this tool.

  1. The Bottle Opener:

The bottle opener is located at the butt of the right side of the handle. The jewelry driver actually extends off of the bottle opener.

  1. The Crimpers:

The crimpers are located right in between the two handles, but is on the lower end, under the pliers. Crimpers are often used for fishing. This is a quick and reliable method for making joins in monofilament and cable.

  1. The File:

The file is a three sided file that folds out of the butt of the right handle. At the end of the file. There is a flat screwdriver.

  1. The Flat Screwdriver:

At the butt of the right handle, where the file folds out, there is a flat screwdriver. This screwdriver is in a size small.

  1. The Jewelry Driver:

This tool also extends out of the butt of the right handle. This specific tool is at the tip of the bottle opener.

  1. The Pliers:

The Pliers are located at the very top of the Sync 1 when it is unfolded.

  1. The Ruler:

When this tool is unfolded, the ruler goes up the inside of the two handles. Each of the sides carries about 2.4 inches. When you extend the ruler and make it into one long stick, it spans a little over 5 inches long.

  1. The Wire Cutter:

The last tool that this multi tool sports is the wire cutter. This wire cutter can cut through soft wire. It is located at the top of the tool when it is unfolded. The wire cutters lie directly below the bolt and nut gripper.

The Sync I has been designed to give you the tools that you need on a daily basis. This tool will be able to get you through your daily life whether you are encountering the expected or the unexpected.

 

The Sync II:

The Specs:

This tool originated in China. It has a closed length of 3.1 inches long, an overall length of 5.8 inches long, and weighs 5 ounces. The Sync II sports 12 different tools. This tool fits belts up to 1 ¾ inches wide.

The Tools:

  1. The Blade:

The blade is located at the butt of the right handle. This is a straight edge blade.

  1. The Bolt/Nut Gripper:

The bolt/nut gripper is located at the top of the unfolded tool. It is made up of the pliers.

  1. The Bottle Opener:

This tool folds out of the inner side of the right handle. At the top of the bottle opener, there is a flat screwdriver.

  1. The Crimpers:

The crimpers are located in between the two handles. Crimpers are often used in fishing, to make joins in lines or cords.

  1. The File:

The file is a three sided file. It folds out of the butt of the right handle and is attached to the small flat screwdriver.

  1. The Flat Screwdriver:

This flat screwdriver is located on the bottle opener, and folds out of the inner side of the right handle. This screwdriver is in a size medium.

  1. The Flat Screwdriver:

This flat screwdriver is in a size small. It folds out of the butt of the right handle and is connected to the end of the file.

  1. The Phillips Screwdriver:

This screwdriver folds out of the butt of the left handle.

  1. The Pliers:

The pliers are located at the top of the unfolded tool. These pliers are needle nosed pliers.

  1. The Ruler:

The ruler extends on both of the inner sides of the handles. When the tool is closed, each side of the handle has bout three and a half inches. However, you can unfold the tool so that the ruler lines up. When you unfold the tool in that manner, the ruler will measure 7 inches.

  1. The Scissors:

The scissors are located on the left side of the handle, where they fold out of the butt.

  1. The Wire Cutters:

The wire cutters are located at the top of the unfolded tool. The cutters lie at the bottom portion of the pliers, directly under the nut/bolt gripper. These are soft wire cutters.

The Sync II has been equipped with a selection of frequently used components that are available at a moment’s notice to save the day anytime and anywhere.

 

Conclusion:

SOG is a reliable company that you will help you carry their products with confidence. Their tools have been US Special Forces approved and have even been honored as the knife of the year. The tools are built and designed to stand up to the roughest of environments and the most extreme of situations. They have been built to help you lead, protect, save, and have fun while doing it. They use high quality materials to complete the high quality designs that Spencer Frazer has introduced to the world. They just released a brand new line of multi tools called the Belt Buckle Sync series, and it will change the way you do everyday life.

They looked at the common dilemma of forgetting your tool or knife and designed a multi tool that you can wear at all times. This belt buckle design has a detachable base, so you can also attach it to a boot or pack strap. The Sync I and II can fit on belts up to 1 ¾ inch wide. The tools that SOG chose to incorporate on the two are tools that you can use frequently in a variety of different scenarios. This tool will be a great investment that will constantly pay itself off when you encounter the unexpected.

 

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SOG Vision ARC Knife Review

The story about SOG knife company begins long before there was even the thought of SOG knife company. This story begins in Vietnam, with a highly classified US Special ops unit. The unit was known as MACV-SOG, and the members had to carry a unique combat knife into the jungle on covert missions. It was years later that Spencer Frazer, a young knife designer, founded SOG Specialty Knives. The year was 1986 and his mission was to reproduce the original SOG Bowie knife and pay tribute to the special ops unit that created it. SOG Knife Company began as a single commemorative model, but quickly became a full line of innovative tools. These tools are field proven by US Special Forces and have even been honored as the Navy SEAL knife of choice.

Today, SOG knives are carried with confidence into the most demanding situations. So whether you are protecting others, leading an epic hunting expedition, tackling one of life’s everyday challenges, or facing your most extreme conditions yet, lead the way with SOG. These tools are forged out of tradition, hardened in the field, honed for you.

Spencer Frazer is the founder of this company as well as the chief designer. He has said, “SOG started some 25 years ago in my apartment with a simple mission: to create innovative products that stand apart from the pack. While SOG has grown, our commitment to that original mission has remained the same. Today, it’s one of my greatest satisfactions to receive letters from SOG enthusiasts the world over, expressing the fact that our products have lived up to their highest standards. IT inspires us to continue to build superior products that last… knives and tools that help you meet the challenges of a demanding world.”

Recently, SOG has released a new knife called the Vision Arc. This knife lives up to the SOG reputation and will be able to assist you through the challenges of your life.

 

The Blade:

The blade on this knife is forged out of VG 10 steel. This is a well-known, high end Japanese steel. It is considered to be a premium level steel. The G in the name stands for “gold”, which refers to the “gold standard” that his level of stainless steel is considered to have met. This steel has been designed for high quality blades and is often used in Japanese cutlery. And even though it was the high end cutlery that really put this type of steel on the market, many top of the line pocket, hunting, and tactical knives have used and are now using VG 10 steel. The reason that it makes such a good kitchen cutlery steel is because of how well it holds and edge as well as its ability to withstand rust. And while those are important characteristics of a kitchen knife, those characteristics will make your everyday carry knife stand apart from the pack. And because of how well this steel resists rust, you can often go longer periods of time without wiping or oiling them. The edge holding abilities are almost second to none. This steel is easy to sharpen, even a beginner will be able to pull it off, and you can get the finest edge on them. Not only that, but it holds that fine edge for very long periods of time. This steel also contains some vanadium, which is why this knife is so tough. This steel is also very durable and very hard without seeming brittle. The steel chosen for this blade is what helps to really set this blade apart.

This knife has been finished with a black TiNi coating. TiNi is short for Titanium Nitride. This is one of the best coating finishes that can be applied to steel. Not only does it provide the user with a smooth, black finish, it also works to increase durability. The TiNi finish is known to be both extremely scratch resistant as well as very peel resistant. This type of finish is actually applied to the steel through a unique process of plasma deposition performed in a complete air-sealed vacuum. Because it is applied in a vacuum, this finish is going to be one of the smoothest and most even coated finishes that you will come across. There will be no portions on the blade where the coating will have run or been applied to thick, especially around the edges. This is a top notch type of coating that won’t disappoint.

The steel has been carved into a clip point blade shape. This blade shape is one of the most popular blade shapes on the market today, and for good reason. You can use this blade shape for all purposes and it is extremely versatile. This shape of blade is most commonly found on the Bowie knife, but it is also very popular on pocket knives or fixed blades. To form this blade shape, the back, or the unsharpened, edge of the knife runs straight form the handle and then stops about halfway up the knife. Then, it turns and continues to the point of the knife. This portion looks as if it is “cut-out” or “clipped-out” and is where this knife shape gets its name form. This clipped out portion can be straight or curved, but on the Vision Arc, it is a very shallow curve. It almost looks straight, but it lacks the hard angles that would accompany a straight clipped area. The point on this blade shape is lowered, so you will have more control when you are suing this knife. Plus, because the tip is more controllable, sharper and thinner at the spine, this blade shape is perfect for quick stabbing, because it has less drag during insertion and faster withdrawal. Another reason that makes this such a perfect all-purpose knife is because of the large belly that it sports. The belly will easily assist you in your everyday tasks, which mostly include some form of slicing. The clip point blade shape is often confused with the drop point blade shape, because they are both pretty popular and great all-purpose knives. The biggest difference between the two different designs is the point. The drop point has a broader tip that provides you with more strength, but denies you the ability to pierce. The clip point blade shape has a much thinner point that lets you pierce very well. However, it doesn’t have as much strength behind it, and is prone to breaking fairly easily. This blade shape prepares you to perform all of the common, daily tasks that you might come across, such as opening boxes. But, it will also arm you to take on the unexpected challenges that you will come across as time goes by.

The Vision Arc sports a straight, or plain, edge. This style of edge is definitely the more traditional edge that can be found on knives. The straight edge excels at push cuts, slicing, peeling, and skinning. As a bonus, this type of edge is much easier to sharpen and you can get a finer edge on it. Some people are worried that if they don’t have a serrated edge, or a combo edge, that they won’t be able to cut through the tougher or thicker materials. While the serrated edge does help cut through the thicker materials because you can saw instead of slice, when the plain edge is sharp enough, it can also manage cutting through those tougher materials.

 

The Handle:

SOG Vision ARC
SOG Vision ARC

The handle on the Vision Arc is made out of black Glass Reinforced Nylon, or GRN. This material is a super strong, resistant to bending, abrasion, and is practically indestructible. Plus, it is relatively inexpensive. This is a similar material to G 10, Carbon Fiber, and Micarta, but it is much stronger. This is because in GRN, the fibers are arranged haphazardly throughout which means that it doesn’t matter which direction the handle is stressed, it is going to stand up to it. With the other materials that I mentioned, the fibers are all arranged in one direction, so they are extremely strong in that direction, but tend to fall apart when the fibers are stressed in other ways. This is why GRN is less brittle than the other materials. This is an inexpensive material because it can be injection molded into any desired shape and texture. Because of this, the manufacturer can produce high volume amounts at a lower price. However, many knife enthusiasts did not warm up to this material because they felt like it was cheap and plastic-y. One of the other drawbacks to this material is that it provides you with less grip than G 10 does.

To provide you with a stellar grip, SOG has added some intense texture throughout the palm portion of the handle. They have also carved “SOG” into the middle of the handle.

To keep your grip comfortable for long periods of use, SOG has added a medium deep finger groove. The rest of the handle is fairly straight. And to keep your grip safe and protected, SOG has added a finger guard to keep you from cutting your fingers.

 

The Pocket Clip:

The pocket clip is SOG’s classic style of pocket clip. It is skeletonized, with their logo in being carved out in the middle of the clip. This pocket clip is black to blend in with the all black knife and to match the black hardware. This is a low carry pocket clip, which means that it won’t be as snug in your pocket as a deep carry would. But, it is a reversible pocket clip, which means that you can carry it on the left or right side of the knife, helping ot make this an ambidextrous friendly knife.

 

The Mechanism:

This knife is a folding knife that sports the Arc-Lock. The Arc-Lock is ambidextrous. This locking mechanism uses a pivotal block to lock the blade into place. This is considered to be one of the finest locks available. This is a crazy strong locking system. SOG has tested this to withstand over 1000 pounds of force (measured at the lock), which far surpasses the conventional lock strength. This is also a very fast mechanism to use. Many people say that it is lightening quick, and because you can deploy this blade with only one hand, it helps everything go more efficiently. This is also a very safe locking mechanism to use. It uses spring action that securely retains the blade closed, and it keeps fingers safely clear while unlocking. This is also a very durable locking mechanism because it is self-adjusting over time and is easily cleaned for long term optimal performance.

 

The Specs:

The blade on the Vision Arc knife measures in at 3.8 inches in length. The blade has a thickness of 0.12 inches. The overall length of this knife is 8.5 inches, with a closed length of 4.7 inches. This is a slim knife and weighs in at 4.20 ounces.

 

Conclusion:

SOG knives and tools are built to last a lifetime. And not just a lifetime of performing the easy, daily tasks, but the unexpected tasks that accompany adventures. These knives have been field tested, so you can be confident when you are carrying a SOG knife. These knives are built to be durable, so that they can last with you through the ages. When you purchase a SOG knife, you are purchasing the only knife that you will need, but with the high quality that they are, you are going to want to buy a few more.

To perfect the Vision Arc knife, SOG started out with a premium steel that is durable, resistant to rust and corrosion, and can get a crazy fine edge that it holds onto for long periods of time. The handle is made out of the durable and lightweight GRN. Because the handle is so lightweight, you can easily have this knife with you at all times without it weighing you down. The reversible pocket clip and perfected locking mechanism are just the cherry on top of an already fantastic knife. Get yours today at BladeOps.

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SOG Banner Assist Knife Review

While many knife company stories begin with one person and their love of knives, this company begins years before that. It actually begins in Vietnam. This is where members of a highly classified US special ops unit known as MACV-SOG were fighting. These members needed special tools because they were working in the jungle on covert missions. So, they carried a unique combat knife. It was years later, in 1986, where that knife inspired a young designer, named Spencer Frazer, to found SOG Specialty Knives. His mission was to reproduce the original SOG Bowie knife and pay tribute to the special ops unit that created it. What began as a single commemorative model soon became a full line of innovative tools. These tool are field proven by US Special Forces, and has even been honored as the Navy SEAL knife of choice.

Today, SOG knives are carried with confidence into the most demanding situations. These tools are forged out of tradition, hardened in the field, honed for you. So whether you’re protecting others or leading an epic hunting expedition, tackling one of life’s everyday challenges or facing your most extreme conditions yet, lead the way with SOG.

 

The Blade:

The blade on this knife is cut out of CPM S35VN steel. This steel was made by Crucible and Chris Reeve. Years before, Crucible release the CPM S30V steel. This steel had excellent edge retention and resists rust effortlessly. This was designed in the US and was typically used for the high end premium pocket knives and expensive kitchen cutlery. Because Crucible added vanadium carbides into the steel, it brought out the extreme hardness. This steel was considered to have the perfect balance between edge retention, hardness, and toughness. However, this was a tricky steel to sharpen, and that was the biggest complaint from knife lovers. That is why Chris Reeve and Crucible set out to improve it and improve it they did. In the S35VN steel, they added small quantities of niobium, which is where the N in the name comes from. They also chose to use a much finer grain structure. Because of these two changes, they were able to make the steel much easier to machine while also improving the toughness and the ability to sharpen this steel. This steel also resists rust effortlessly. When the first steel was so perfect, just imagine how excellent this improved version is.

The steel on the Banner was finished with a black TiNi finish. TiNi is short for Titanium Nitride. This is one of the best coatings that can be applied to a steel. Not only does it create a sleek, black look, it also works to increase durability of the steel. The TiNi finish is known to be both extremely scratch resistant as well as peel resistant. This finish is applied to the steel in a unique process of plasma deposition performed in a complete air-sealed vacuum. This means that the coating is applied as evenly as you will find; there are no spots where the finish will be uneven or where it ran, like a painted finish can get.

The steel on this knife has been carved into a clip point blade shape. This is a great all-purpose blade shape because of how versatile the blade shape is. It is also one of the most popular blade shapes that is in use today. This blade shape is most commonly found on Bowie Knives, but it is also a popular blade shape on many pocket knives and fixed blade knives. The back, or unsharpened, edge of the knife runs straight form the handle and then stops about halfway up the knife. Then, it turns and continues to the point of the knife. This area looks to be cut out, or clipped out, which is where the knife gets its name from. This clipped out portion can be curved or straight, but on the Banner, it is a straight clipped out portion. The point on this blade shape is lowered, which means that you are going to have more control over your slices and while you are using the knife. Because the tip is controllable, and sharper and thinner at the spine, the clip point blade shape lends itself to quicker stabbing with less drag during insertion and faster withdrawal. While the drop point and the clip point blade shapes are often confused, the biggest difference between the two is the point. On the drop point blade shape, the point is much broader and provides you with a lot more strength. However, because it is broader, you do not have any stabbing capabilities. The clip point blade shape features a much thinner blade point. So while you do possess stabbing capabilities with this blade shape, it is much weaker and more prone to breaking or snapping. With a drop point blade shape, you are able to perform harder or heavier duty tasks than with a clip point blade shape. One of the other reasons that this is such a versatile blade shape is that it features a large belly area that is perfect for slicing. One of the biggest features that you should look for in an everyday knife is one that can be used for slicing. The clip point blade shape helps make the Banner a perfect option for your everyday carry knife.

This blade features a plain edge. This means that it will be easier to sharpen and you will be able to get a finer edge on this knife. Plain edged blades are the perfect option if the tasks that you are looking to perform include a lot of push cuts. The Banner will also be able to skin, peel, and slice because of its plain edge. The Banner has truly been designed to make your everyday tasks much easier.

On the back of the knife blade, near the handle, there is a series of jimping.

 

The Handle:

SOG Banner Knife
SOG Banner Knife

The handle on this knife is made out of aluminum. Aluminum is anodized for a handful of reasons. One of the most obvious reasons that aluminum is anodized is to add a color to the metal. In the Banner’s case, SOG chose to anodize the handle black. A few of the other reasons that it has been anodize is to add hardness and protection. Aluminum is a very durable material, especially when it is used of knife handles. Plus, this material is a low density metal. This means that you will have a nice, hefty feel to your knife without your knife actually weighing too much. When Aluminum is properly texturized, you can have a secure grip on your knife. Aluminum is also a comfortable material to use for extended use. One of the biggest drawbacks to aluminum is that it is a very cold material. So, if you are working in the winter months or a cold environment, this handle might feel like it is biting into your hand. It can be very uncomfortable because of its conductive properties. One of the other reasons that aluminum is such a good knife handle material is that it is extremely resistant to rusting or corroding. The last drawback to an aluminum handle is that it is very susceptible to scratches and dings.

To add texture to this handle, SOG has carved in three grooves into the palm portion of the handle. They have also carved “SOG” into the handle. To help keep your fingers safe and your hand comfortable, they have carved out a deep finger groove. This is the perfect place to rest your finger as you grip the handle. One of the other safety features that SOG has added is a finger guard.

 

The Pocket Clip:

The pocket clip on this knife is skeletonized. In the middle of the pocket clip, SOG has added their logo, which is also skeletonized. The pocket clip on this knife is a low carry pocket clip, but it is a reversible pocket clip. This helps to make the Banner a little more ambidextrous friendly.

 

The Mechanism:

This is an assisted opening knife. The assisted mechanism that supports you is a thumb stud. This is arguably the most common one hand opening feature. The thumb stud is employed by many companies and designers. A thumb stud essentially replaces the nail nick found on more traditional knives. The principle is pretty straightforward. You grasp the folded knife, place the tip of your flexed thumb on the stud and extend your thumb to wing the blade through its arc until the blade is fully open. Knives with a thumb stud usually incorporate a locking mechanism of some sort. If the stud extends through the blade, the knife can be opened with either hand.

 

The Specs:

The blade on this knife is 3.5 inches long. The overall length of this knife is 7.1 inches long, with a closed length of 4.6 inches long. This knife weighs in at 4.6 ounces. This knife was designed and made in the United States of America.

 

The Pros of the Banner:

  • The steel chosen for the blade is excellent at holding an edge.
  • The steel chosen for the blade resists rust effortlessly.
  • The steel chosen for the blade is very durable.
  • The blade’s steel is easy to machine and sharpen.
  • The steel is very tough, yet still durable.
  • The steel is hard, yet not brittle, which is a rarer combination to find.
  • The coating is applied in a vacuum, so you don’t get buildup of painted on coating.
  • Because the coating is applied in a vacuum setting, the coating is extremely even.
  • The coating is one of the most quality coating finishes, and will take much more to scratch off the coating.
  • The aluminum handle is extremely durable.
  • The aluminum handle is very resistant to rusting or corroding.
  • The aluminum handle makes maintenance a breeze.
  • The pocket clip is reversible.
  • The aluminum handle has plenty of texture added to it, to provide you with a very secure grip.
  • The aluminum handle provides you with a very hefty feel, but it is actually a very lightweight handle material.
  • The handle has a finger groove and a finger guard to keep you safe.
  • The clip point blade shape is versatile.
  • The clip point blade shape provides you with stabbing capabilities.
  • The clip point blade shape gives you a large belly that is perfect for slicing.
  • The thumb stud makes it a breeze to open your knife one handedly.

 

The Cons of the Banner:

  • Because it is a coating finish, the black will eventually scratch off.
  • The pocket clip is a low carry pocket clip.
  • The aluminum handle is a very cold material, so if you are trying to use this knife in a cold environment, it will feel like its biting into your hand.
  • The clip point blade shape has a weak tip that is prone to breaking or snapping.

 

Conclusion:

SOG’s story begins in Vietnam with a group of special ops that had to carry a special knife. Years later, Spencer Frazer found that knife and wanted to recreate it. At the beginning of SOG, there was only one knife and it was the tribute knife. But as they became a more popular company, they began to design and sell many other types of knives. Now, when you purchase a SOG knife, you know you are getting your money’s worth because these knives have been field tested for you.

For this perfect knife, SOG started out with a premium steel that has the perfect balance between edge retention, hardness, and toughness. Plus, it resists rust effortlessly and maintenance is a piece of cake. The handle is made out of aluminum, which is an incredibly durable material that also requires very little maintenance. The thumb stud allows you to open your knife with only one hand and the pocket clip is reversible. The reversible pocket clip helps to make this knife ambidextrous friendly. This everyday carry knife is truly a game changer. Get yours today at BladeOps.

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Spectacular SOG Knives

Something interesting about SOG knives is that they actually began in Vietnam. There were members of a highly classified US special ops unit who all carried a special combat knife for their jungle missions. It wasn’t until 1986 when Spencer Frazer founded SOG Specialty Knives, he wanted to reproduce and design this original knife. He commemorated that bowie knife model and then went on to produce a full line of knives and tools. Lots of these knives have been field-proved by US Special Forces. Some have received the Navy SEAL choice knife. These knives are reliable, durable, and trusted. They can be used from hunting, self-protecting, or even just your everyday knife and you know that your knife will stand up to the challenges that you throw at it.

 

SOG Trident
SOG Trident

The Trident:

The blade on this knife is 3.75 inches made out of AUS-8 steel. This steel has a coating that helps resist rust. SOG has produced many variations of this knife, so you can get the coating in a few different options: A Black Tini or a satin finish if that is what you want. This steel is a perfect hardness, because it holds an edge for quite a while and then is easy to re-sharpen when needed. The hardness of this knife can stand up to safety missions or work as a utility knife. You can get this blade in a full straight edge or a combo edge, whichever you prefer. Some bonuses about having serrations on your blade is that they can help cut through materials such as rope or branches. Plus, if you are using this knife as your everyday carry knife, serrations making cutting through cardboard a breeze. The thickness of the blade is .13 inches, which can seem to be on the thinner side. However, because it is a folding knife, if you added any thickness, you add weight and bulkiness, neither are ideal for a perfect folding knife. The blade sports a clip point silhouette and has a spring assisted opening mechanism. On the blade is an ambidextrous thumb stud which helps opening the blade easy and quickly.

The handle on this knife is made out of glass-reinforced nylon scales with a rubber over mold and you can get these in many different colors. Some of those colors being black, digital desert camo, tiger stripe camo, and a few other camo patters/colors. The locking system on this knife is a Piston Lock, which is similar to Benchmade’s locking system. Something about this knife that many people don’t like is the pocket clip; it isn’t reversible, it isn’t as long as many people would want, and it does have an awkward flair at the bottom. However, this is really the only complaint that people have, so don’t get turned away because of the pocket clip.

The overall length of this knife is 8.5 inches and the closed length is 4.75 inches long. The knife weighs 3.6 ounces. Something unique about this knife is that if the spring breaks, the knife can still open and close. If this does happen, you will end up with a manual folder, but that is a huge bonus.  Find all our Trident SOG knife models here.

Pros of the Trident:

  • The coating on this knife helps resist rust, even if the knife ends up being submerged in water for long periods of time.
  • You can get the blade coated in two different coatings, depending on your preference.
  • The edge on this knife is held for long periods of time and is easy to sharpen.
  • You can get a straight edge blade or a combo edge blade.
  • You can get the handle in many different colors.
  • If the spring on this knife breaks, the knife will still open and close, you will just have a manual folding knife.

Cons of the Trident:

  • Many people have complaints about the pocket clip.
  • The blade is a little on the thin side.

 

The Twitch II:

SOG Twitch II
SOG Twitch II

The blade on this knife is 2.65 inches long made out of AUS-8 steel. The steel is then treated with a “cryogenic heat treatment” which is done by slowly reducing the blade temperature to -300 degrees Fahrenheit and then slowly bringing it back up again. This treatment improves the strength and the sharpness of the steel. This blade is crazy sharp, which makes cutting a very easy task. Just like the Trident, you can get this knife in either a plain edge or a combo edge. The blade also will come in gray, black, or rosewood. Because of the lock back mechanism, the blade can be held securely in either the open or the closed positon. The knife is an assisted opening knife, which makes it easy to open with only one hand. To close the knife, you push the lock bar and then fold the blade down, which is usually a two-handed operation. But, with lots of practice, it is possible to achieve this maneuver one-handed, making life a little easier.

The handle on this knife is made out of Anodized Aluminum 6061-T6. SOG has created many different designs for this knife, and you can get the handle in a variety of different colors. Some of these colors are gray, black, digital camo, and a unique wood handle. This handle material gives you enough grip for lighter tasks and work, but the material might make heavy duty tasks a little bit trickier. The handle features a very strong pocket clip. The sturdiness of this pocket clip actually requires a firm push onto your pocket or a firm pull off of it. However, the pocket clip is not reversible, which does turn off some people.

SOG outdid themselves when they re-designed the Twitch to get this updated version. This knife is an extremely high-quality knife.  The overall length of this knife is 6.2 inches long and the closed length of this knife is 3.55 inches long. It isn’t too expensive, but it isn’t cheap. The price is worth the quality that you get, especially if you are using this knife for your everyday carry.  Find the entire line of SOG Twitch II knives on our website here.

Pros of the Twitch II:

  • The steel has a cryogenic heat treatment, which improves the strength and sharpness of the steel.
  • The blade is crazy sharp.
  • You can get a straight edge or a combo edge.
  • You can get a variety of different handle colors.
  • The pocket clip is very strong.
  • Not too expensive, especially for the quality that you get.

Cons of the Twitch II:

  • The pocket clip is not reversible.
  • To close the knife, you will have to use two hands until you get practice in.

 

The Flash II:

SOG Flash II Rescue Knife
SOG Flash II Rescue Knife

The blade on this knife is 3.5 inches long made out of AUS-8 steel which is a good quality Japanese steel. Like I said, this steel is good, it does hold its edge well, it is easy to re-sharpen, but it isn’t great. To make up for the quality that it is missing, some of the Flash II versions are coated in a Titanium Nitride. You can get this blade in a partially serrated version or a straight edge version. Like the two previously mentioned knives, this is also a spring assisted opener; it boasts SOG’s Assisted Technology which is just a very fast spring assisted opening mechanism. The blade sports a drop point shape.

The handle on this knife is Zytel, which is a fiberglass-reinforced nylon. This material is a little easier to understand if I call it a reinforced plastic, because that’s really what it is. The handle comes in a ton of different color options. The Zytel material is a light material, so you don’t have to worry about your knife weighing you down. But, it doesn’t feel like a cheap material, it feels sturdy. This handle is frameless, which makes the weight of the knife go down quite a bit. Plus, without the metal frames, when you are carrying this weight in cold temperatures you won’t have to worry about the metal freezing your hand. The handle sports a deep carry pocket clip and SOG’s deep carry pocket clips are at the top of deep carry pocket clips. Some people think that this clip is a little bit too tight, but it does loosen up as you use it. This handle is a comfortable shape to hold, so you can use it for long periods, but it isn’t the most comfortable handle that you’d be able to find.

The overall length of this knife is 8 inches long and when the knife is folded, it is 4.5 inches long. The knife weighs 3.1 ounces. This knife has a poor reputation of being just for beginners and not something that most knife connoisseurs would want, but this is a fantastic knife. The reputation is wrong. This is a durable, reliable knife that won’t let you down when you need it. Don’t overlook this knife–find all the Flash II SOG knives here, in stock and ready to ship.

Pros of the Flash II:

  • The blade has a coating to help improve the hardness and durability of the steel.
  • Comes in a straight edge or a combo edge blade.
  • The Zytel handle is a lightweight material yet it still feels sturdy.
  • The handle is frameless, so you don’t have to worry about excess weight or freezing metal on your hand.
  • The handle comes in a variety of colors.
  • Has a deep carry pocket clip.

Cons of the Flash II:

  • Because the handle is frameless, it does lose some of its durability.
  • Is known for being just for beginners.
  • The AUS-8 steel is not the highest steel choice.

 

The SEAL Pup:

SOG Seal Pup
SOG Seal Pup

This is a fixed blade knife with a blade that is 4.75 inches long. It is made out of AUS-8 stainless steel that is powder coated adding more corrosion resistance than it would have originally had. At the broadest point it is 1.125 inches wide and the thickness of the blade is .19 inches. You can get this knife in either a plain edge blade or a combo edge blade. If you get the combo version, it has 1.5 inches of serrations and the rest of the edge is a plain edge. This blade is crazy sharp, even right out of the package.

The handle on this knife is a glass-reinforced nylon. It sports finger grooves and has a small guard. This guard is important because of how sharp the blade actually is. The handle has extreme texture all around it except for the front of the handle and the finger grooves. You will have extreme grip even when it is wet or dirty. You’ll have grip in almost any situation. Another unique thing about this handle is that it doesn’t retain heat or cold, so you can use it in any weather.

The sheath of this knife is made out of reinforced Nylon that has a Kydex insert to hold the blade. The sheath sports a pocket that seal with Velcro, so you can keep any small survival instruments in it, such as a fire starter.

Overall, this knife is 9 inches long and weighs 5.4 ounces. If you are looking for a fixed blade, this one is going to meet all of your expectations and then some.  Find all the SOG Seal Pup variations here.

Pros of the SEAL Pup:

  • The steel has a powder coating that adds to its corrosion resistance properties.
  • You can get this in a straight edge or a combo edge blade.
  • The blade is extremely sharp.
  • The handle has perfectly designed finger grooves.
  • The handle has a finger guard, which you do need because of how sharp the blade is.
  • The handle has great grip.
  • The handle doesn’t retain heat or cold.
  • The sheath has a pocket to keep a small item in.

Cons of the SEAL Pup:

  • The steel on the blade doesn’t hold an edge as well as other steels would.
  • The choil is very small and can injure your finger if you put your finger there.

 

Conclusion:

SOG is a fantastic option for any of your knife needs, but they excel at tactical knives because the original knife was designed from a knife that a Special Ops group used. With so many spectacular knives from this brand, it can be hard to choose the best one for you. I compiled this list of the four best SOG knives out there–you can find all the SOG knives on our website here–in stock and ready to ship.

 

 

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SOG Kiku Assisted Knife Review

The story about how SOG came to be begins long before SOG existed. The story actually begins in Vietnam, with members of a highly classified US special ops unit, known as MACV-SOG. These members needed to carry a unique combat knife because most of their covert missions were in the jungle. It was years later, in 1986, that Spencer Frazer came across this bowie knife. The knife inspired him to found SOG Specialty Knives. His mission for the company was to reproduce the original SOG Bowie knife and pay tribute to the special ops unit that created it. What began as a single commemorative model soon became a full line of innovative tools. These tools have been filed proven by the US Special Forces and have even been honored as the Navy SEAL knife of choice.

Today, SOG knives are carried with confidence into the most demanding situations. It doesn’t matter if you are protecting others, leading an epic hunting expedition, tackling one of life’s every day challenges, or facing your most extreme conditions yet, you should lead the way with SOG. This tools are forged out of tradition, hardened in the field, and honed for you.

Spencer Frazer is the founder and chief designer at SOG. He has always been a creative person who has had a great curiosity of how things worked. While he was in the Boy Scouts, he gained an affinity for knives and axes, but it was much later in his life that that interest would be channeled into actually creating knives and tools. He graduated from UCLA as a math and science major and started his own company in the professional audio industry. Then he went on to work in the aerospace defense industry as a n R&D tool/die and model maker. He also became involved in the modern art movement and began meeting with top artists. This is where he learned about scale and color. Spencer feels as if all of his life experiences converged the moment Spencer saw his first Vietnam SOG Bowie. He has said, “the knife was magical in how it looked and felt. You could see the history as well as the functional aspects of the this knife.” Later on, Spencer said, “We don’t settle for ordinary. We never did, and we never will.”

Recently, SOG has released a brand new knife called the Kiku Assisted, and let me tell you, it is anything but ordinary.

SOG Kiku Assist Knife
SOG Kiku Assist Knife

The Blade:

The blade on the Kiku Assisted is made out of VG-10 steel. This steel is a well-known, high end Japanese steel. This steel is considered premium, in fact, the G in the name stands for “gold” because this steel has reached a “gold standard”. This steel was designed for high quality blades that are used in kitchen cutlery. One of the reasons that makes this steel such a great option for kitchen knives is it’s ability to withstand rust and corrosion. People who use this blade every single day, can go about a week without washing or oiling the blade and the blade still refuses to rust. But, that feature also comes in handy in other knife types, so this stainless steel has been used for top of the line hunting, pocket, and tactical knives. This type of steel always excels. This steel can also take a crazy sharp edge. Not only can you get a crazy sharp edge on the knife, but it is a very easy steel to sharpen. Most beginners will be able to pull off sharpening this knife. And the last major benefit to the edge on this steel is that it holds an edge for long periods of time. This is also a very durable knife and because of the vanadium in the steel, it is also known for its toughness. A big benefit to this type of steel is that it is a very hard steel but it doesn’t seem to be brittle.

There are two different finishes that you can choose from when purchasing this blade. The first option is a black TiNi finish. This is short for Titanium Nitride. This is actually the very best coating finish that can be applied to steel. The main purpose that it achieves is adding a sleek, black finish to the knife as well as increasing durability. This type of finish is known to be both extremely scratch resistant as well as extremely peel resistant. Something that makes this type of coated finish unique is that it is applied to the steel through a unique process of plasma deposition that is performed in a completely air-sealed vacuum. This sets the TiNi finish apart from the other finish in the manner of how smooth and even the finish is on the steel. A big complaint about many of the coated finishes is that near the edges, it appears as if the coating has run or built up, but you won’t get that with this finish.

The other finish option that you have is a satin finish. This is a semi-shiny finish with a luster falling between bead blasted, which is matte, and mirror polish, which is a high gloss. This is the most popular finish on production knife blades. It excels at showing off the fine lines of the steel. This is a very classic finish.

The blade on this knife has been carved into a tanto blade shape. The tanto blade shape isn’t designed to be an all-purpose knife, it is designed to do one thing and one thing really well. The tanto shape has been designed for piercing through tough materials. This type of blade was originally designed for piercing through armor and is similar to the Japanese long and short swords. However, in the early 80’s Cold Steel modernized it and popularized it. To form the shape, the tanto has a high point with a flat grind, leading to an extremely strong point that is perfect for stabbing into hard materials. The point is much thicker than most knife shapes and contains a lot of metal near the tip. Because of those two characteristics, it is able to absorb the impact from repeated piercing that would cause most other knives to snap or break. The front edge of the blade meets the unsharpened edge at an angle, rather than the traditional curve. This means that the tanto shape does not have a belly. Because the shape is lacking a belly, slicing is not going to be as smooth, and these knives are not as useful in a general utility sense. But, because you sacrifice the belly, you get a much stronger tip that can be used in tough situations. One of the other drawbacks to this knife is that it is harder to control the point.

This knife sports a straight edge. There are a variety of benefits about having a straight, or plain, edge. Some of them are that they excel at push cuts (which are the more common cuts), they are easier to sharpen, you can get a finer edge on them, they can peel, they can slice, and they can skin. The straight edge is definitely the more traditional edge. Some people are worried that they aren’t going to be able to cut through the tougher or thicker materials, because with a serrated edge, you can saw through those. While serrated edges do perform better in those situations, if your straight edge is sharp enough, it will be able to manage those same tasks. And because the blade on the Kiku Assisted is made out of VG-10 steel, you will be able to manage those tasks.

 

SOG Kiku Assist Kknife, Satin
SOG Kiku Assist Kknife, Satin

The Handle:

The handle on this knife has been made out of a linen Micarta. This is a material that has been made with the organic compound Phenol, which is a type of resin. To make the Micarta, thin layers of linen cloths are soaked in a phenolic resin, which makes a product that is lightweight, strong, and looks a little classier than G-10. This material was actually originally introduced to the world as an electrical insulator and is now one of the best plastics out there for making knife handles. However, Micarta actually has no surface texture and is very slippery and smooth. This means that it requires a lot of hand labor to produce and then carve some sort of texture into the knife handle. This makes Micarta a pricier material, which means that your knife is going to be more expensive because of it. The linen Micarta on the Kiku Assisted knife is a green Micarta that has plenty of grooves carved into the spine and the bottom of the handle. These grooves will provide you with a secure grip in most situations. This is a brittle material that can break if impacted with a very hard or very sharp object. To keep your fingers safe, there is an elongated, shallow finger groove and a finger guard.

 

The Pocket Clip:

The pocket clip on the Kiku Assisted knife is the classic SOG pocket clip. It has been skeletonized because “SOG” has been carved into the middle of it. This is a low carry clip that is reversible. This means that you can carry it on either the traditional or nontraditional side of the knife, helping to make this knife ambidextrous. This is a black pocket clip that matches the black hardware on this knife.

 

The Mechanism:

This is an assisted opening folding knife. The assisted mechanism on it is the thumb stud. The thumb stud is a small stud that lies on the butt of the blade, near the handle. The thumb stud sits on the side of the blade near where the blade pivots on the handle. This makes for an easy and smooth opening operation. This is also one of the most common opening mechanisms on the market. This is a very comfortable way to open your knife with only one hand. However, the drawback to having the thumb stud mechanism is that it puts your hand very close to moving blade. There are plenty of people who have slipped while deploying their knife and slicing their thumb. While using a thumb stud, you do have to be careful.

This knife also sports the SOG Assisted Technology, which works through the balance of opposing high tension coil springs. As you initiate the opening action, the force propelling your blade open becomes greater than the force keeping it closed. The result is a blade that springs open instantly once it is engaged, seemingly on its own.

The Kiku Assisted knife sports a button lock.

 

The Specs:

The Kiku Assisted boasts a blade that is 3.5 inches long with a blade thickness of 0.12 inches. When the knife is closed, it measures in at 4.6 inches, and has an overall length of 8.1 inches long. This knife weighs in at 5.6 ounces. This knife originated in Taiwan.

 

Conclusion:

SOG has a reputation of designing and building trusted knives that can take a beating. They build durable knives to get you through not only your everyday tasks, but also the challenges that accompany any adventure. These knives are field tested, so you know that they are going to be able to take on whatever you throw at them. These tools are tools that you can trust and rely on. The Kiku Assisted knife is no different.

To create an impeccable knife, they started out with one of the highest quality steels. This steel is easy to sharpen, you can get a crazy sharp edge, and the edge will last long. Because of how stainless this steel is, maintenance is a breeze. The tanto style blade is the perfect blade for piercing through even the toughest of materials. The handle is durable and strong, but also lightweight, so you don’t have to worry about this knife weighing you down. The thumb stud is an efficient way to get this knife open and you don’t have to worry about it closing on you because of the button lock. Get your brand new Kiku Assisted today at BladeOps.

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SOG Mini Instinct Knife

Looking for a great neck knife?  Look no further than the new SOG Mini Instinct.  Available with a skeletonized or a G10 handle (as pictured), the Mini Instinct boasts a 1.9″ clip point blade.  Built for heavy use, this fantastic knife is ideal for neck, pocket or gear bag carry and allows you to have all the power and cutting strength of a big knife in a small package.

SOG Mini Instinct
SOG Mini Instinct

SPECIFICATIONS:

  • Overall Length: 4.8″
  • Blade Length: 1.9″
  • Blade Thickness: .16″
  • Weight: 1.60 oz
  • Blade Finish: Satin
  • Hardness: 53-57RC
  • Blade Steel: 5Cr15MoV
  • Blade Style: Clip Point
  • Edge: Plain
  • Handle: G10
  • Sheath: Hard Molded Nylon
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