Boker traces its origin to the 17th century as a tool maker in Germany graduating to swords and blades by the 1800s. The company claims it was producing 2000 sabres a week by 1839 for use in various wars. By the 1860s the company had fractured with a branch of the family emigrating to North America and setting up plants in Canada, New York, and Mexico. The German and North American factories produced similar knives and used the “Tree Brand” trademark. This continued until World War II when the Solingen factory was destroyed and Boker USA took control of the trademark until the German factory was rebuilt in the 1950s. In the 1960s and 1970s the company changed hands several times, with the New York facility shutting down in 1983. In 1986, Boker reacquired the rights to the American brand and Boker USA was started in Denver, Colorado for US production.
Boker USA actually has four lines of knives that they produce. The first one is the Boker Premium Collection that focuses on high-quality, handmade sports, and collectible knives form the Boker manufacture in Solingen. The next line is the Boker Tradition—these are handmade hunting and leisure time knife from the Boker knife manufacture in Buenos Aires. Third is Magnum by Boker which focuses on Price and Performance—this line focuses on attractive sports and leisure time knife for the daily use and collectible swords. The last line is the Boker Plus line. This is the line of knives that produces the Sulaco knife. This line is in close cooperation with international acknowledged experts form military, police, and security to develop and test tactical knives for the professional user. Boker Plus knives are innovative in terms of function and design, as well as guaranteed for everyday use. Conception, design, and construction of these knives are carried out in Solingen, and production takes place in Europe, the USA, and Asia.
Today we are going to focus on the Boker Sulaco Titanium Folder knife with a stonewashed blade.
The blade on this knife is made out of 440C stainless steel. 440C is a 400 series stainless steel and it is the highest carbon content from 400 stainless steel series. It is usually heat treated to reach hardness of 58-60 HRC. It is a bearing steel and is used to make knife blades. This is an upper mid-range steel that was once considered the high-end in US knife steels, 440C is a good all-around steel that has now been overshadowed by many of the newer super-steels on the block, although that does not take away from the qualities that it still possesses. This is a stainless steel that is most commonly found on mass-manufactured pocket knives and is so popular because it is a solid, affordable, all-around choice. This steel is reasonably tough and wear resistant, but it excels most at how stain resistant it is. This steel does hold an edge better than its 400-sereis counterpart 420HC but, you do lose some of its corrosion resistance. This steel can easily be sharpened. It does have the highest levels of carbon and chromium in 400 series of stainless steels. This steel does have good resistance to the atmosphere, fresh water, and mild acids. It has the best resistance in the hardened, tempered, and passivated condition. This steel allows for razor sharp edges.
To create this finish, the blade starts with a dark wash to give the blade an initial protective finish Then the blade is washed with stones, or literally rolled around with pebbles, which marks it, bringing out the underlying color of the steel. The finished stone wash gives the knife an interesting pattern, while still maintaining the protective properties of the dark wash. This finish helps hide wear and tear on the knife as the knife is used. One of the stonewash finishes biggest advantage is that it preserves the look of the blade overtime. The stonewash finish gives you a textured, rugged look. This blade finish helps to hide scratches and fingerprints, so you won’t have to polish your blade as often as you would with other blade finishes. Also, depending on the manufacturer, a stonewash finish can often look satin from a distance.
This blade has been carved into a spear point style blade. This style of blade is very similar to the needle-point style of blade, because of how good it is for piercing. But, the spear point does have a stronger tip and it does contain a small belly that can be used for slicing, unlike the needle point blade shape. The spear point shape is a symmetrically pointed blade with a point that is in line with the center line of the blade’s long axis. Both edges of the knife rise and fall equally to create a point that line sup exactly with the equator of the bade. The spear point blade shape is a great choice if you are looking for a good balance between piercing and slicing ability. This blade shape combines the sharp point of a dagger with the strength of a drop point blade, while also maintaining some of the “belly” that is used for slicing. All in all, it is a great hybrid blade design that is extremely functional. With this blade, the point controllability is excellent and the point is extremely strong, so you can easily use this knife for detail and tip work. To help with overall controllability, the entire spine of the knife has thick, shallow jimping. This gives your fingers a little bit of grip to really have full control over your blade at all times and in all environments. This blade does sport a plain edged blade, which gives you the ability to use this knife in a wider variety of tasks. However, some people do love the serrated edge because they with a serrated edge you can saw through some of the tougher and thicker materials. On the other hand, serrated edges leave you with jagged cuts, while a plain edge will give you clean cuts and slices.
The handle on this knife is made out of titanium. Titanium is truly a phenomenal material for knife handles. For how light the material is, it is amazing how durable and tough it is. On the flip side, it is also the most expensive common metal used in knife handles. It offers an extremely high resistance to corrosion, it doesn’t conduct and retain cold as much as its counterparts, and it can be anodized just the same as aluminum. Surprisingly, titanium is actually less resistant to scratching than stainless steel, but the upside of lightness outweighs the downside.
Some of the pros of this material is that it is strong—titanium is ideal for high-end, high performance knives and gear because it is light and strong. Titanium has a very high tensile strength. The next advantage is that it is low weight—titanium has a very low density. This characteristic strength to weight ratio is absolutely crucial when making a decision on your everyday knife. Titanium is also very corrosion resistant—it is even resistant in saltwater environments; this trait is due to a continuous oxide outer layer when exposed to air. Unfortunately, with all of those pros, titanium will cost you a decent amount.
A rare characteristic of titanium is that it is one of those rare metals that has a warm feel to it, so it won’t make your hands suffer nearly as much in the winter time, especially when being compared to aluminum.
The handle on this Boker knife has a very deep finger groove with a shallower finger groove following it, to give you a very comfortable and safe grip. There is jimping on the spine of the knife as well as a small portion on the bottom of the handle. The handle is two-toned; with lighter grey in the middle and darker grey framing it. Across the palm of the handle, there is a lot of thick texturing to give you a very secure grip. And, as a bonus and a benefit to using this as your EDC of choice, there is a lanyard hole carved into the butt of this handle.
The Pocket Clip:
The pocket clip on this knife is statically designed for tip up carry only on the traditional side of the handle. This is a deep carry pocket clip in a stonewash finish. This clip is kept in place by two small silver screws that match the rest of the hardware on the Boker Sulaco.
This is a manual folding knife that uses dual-thumb lugs and a frame lock design. A thumb lug is just a large thumb stud. This is arguably the most common one-hand-opening feature, and you can find this opening system through most knife manufacturers. A thumb lug 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 swing the blade through its arc until the blade is fully open. Because the thumb lugs extend through both sides of the blade, the knife becomes ambidextrous.
The locking mechanism that this knife is equipped with is a frame lock mechanism. You can think of a frame lock as a beefed up version of the liner lock. They are very similar to liner lock mechanisms, except instead of an internal spring bar moving into place, tis part of the handle itself. Frame lock knives tend to be stronger than liner locks, as the piece of metal that slips into place is more substantial than that in a liner. Because of their similarity to liner locks, closing a frame lock knife is virtually the same—you push down on the spring bar so it no longer blocks the butt of the blade, remove your thumb from the path, then fold the knife closed.
This type of locking system puts a large portion of metal against the blade, ensuring a strong lockup for piercing, cutting, slicing, and other heavy duty tasks. Frame locks are seen in lots of mid to upper range knives, typically rafted from titanium. Frame locks are known for their strength and thickness, but it is only with the correct construction that they operate at full capacity. In the angle of the blade bottom is not matched correctly with the lock, the lock may not travel the correct distance, damaging its effectiveness.
The blade on the Boker Sulaco measures in at 3.7 inches long with the handle measuring in at 4.8 inches. The overall length of the knife is 8.5 inches long. This knife weighs in at 4.8 ounces.
Ram Maramba, late owner/operator of Zero Knives, is a Texas-born knife maker who was remembered for his contemporary non-nonsense forms and eye-catching conceptions. Each frame lock designed model sports a milled handle that is not only aesthetically pleasing but promotes plenty of grip security. Couple that with the dual over-sized thumb lugs and this folder is ready to go right out of the gate. The Boker Plus line of knives are designed in cooperation with knife experts worldwide and provide innovative knife concepts for every task. This model features an all-titanium handle, a modified spear point style blade in a stonewash finish and the pocket clip is statically designed for tip up carry only on the traditional side of the handle. The titanium handle is strong and durable, so you can take on all of your heavy duty tasks that come your way throughout your day. The spear point blade style is the perfect balance between point strength and belly, which helps with versatility. The stonewash finish and 440C stainless steel help preserve the look of your knife, because both of them are low maintenance. Pick up your Boker Plus 01BO034 Sulaco Titanium Folder Knife with a stonewashed blade today at BladeOps.