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Knives Illustrated November 2020

Your guide to the best knives -- hunting, chef's, tactical, outdoor, collectibles, and more.

United States
Engaged Media
7 Issues

in this issue

2 min
winning on merit

When I was young, I never cared much about football. In all honesty, I still don’t pay much attention to the NFL, but I am a proud New York Jets fan. (I know… They suck.) Let me explain how I became a supporter of arguably the most dysfunctional franchise in the NFL and how it relates to knives. I became a Jets fan because I moved to North Carolina and everyone justifiably gave me a metric ton of crap about them just because I was from New York. Eventually, I became a fan out of spite. I felt a need to stick up for the home team, no matter how awful they are year in and year out. I could have chosen the Giants or especially the Bills because they’re right…

6 min
american made edc

1. County Comm Titanium Pocket Strong Box If you carry small, loose items with you, it can be hard to keep them secure and accessible. Medication is especially vulnerable to being crushed. I’ve used small zip-close bags before, but they don’t really offer any protection to their contents. The smaller metal tins work well, but even those can easily crush under foot. County Comm has a history of making slick titanium tools and gadgets, and the company has brought that experience to bear with its new Titanium Pocket Strong Box. This little box weighs only 1.7 ounces but is machined from a billet of titanium and is about as indestructible as you can get for something this size. It uses a sliding lid that secures with a spring plunger so that it…

4 min
less is more

It seems to me there are more and more designers and companies in the production knife market every day that are producing more and more models. Combined with social media and direct sales, allowing companies to drop their latest and greatest without waiting for big shows, it seems easier than ever to bring new models to market and everybody’s always launching something new. As a result, it feels like every time I open social media or check my email, somebody is announcing a brand-new model. Now, don’t get me wrong, options are great, and in a perfect world, each one would offer something unique and different. In a perfect world, this incredible abundance would mean every knife lover would find their perfect knife out there somewhere (and if not, well, they’d…

6 min
esee knives xancudo

“WHEN YOU PICK UP AN ESEE KNIFE, YOU KNOW IT’S A TOOL THAT’S BEEN DESIGNED BY PEOPLE WHO’VE ACTUALLY USED THE TOOLS." The folks at ESEE Knives know a thing or two about what works in the field. They should, because they use their knives while teaching, doing search and rescue work, hiking, backpacking, camping, hunting, and shooting. When you pick up an ESEE knife, you know it’s a tool that’s been designed by people who’ve actually used the tools and field-tested them before they’re offered for sale to the rest of us. In the case of the new Xancudo, it’s had a double dose of that testing process, as the design first came to fruition as the Zancudo folder before being transformed into the current fixed-blade version. Meet the Xancudo I’m a fan…

1 min
a warranty to beat all warranties

ESEE stands behind its products, and it knows that folks who buy the company’s knives are going to use them, and even abuse them. The warranty is really simple: If you break it, ESEE will repair or replace it. Period. While I’m sure the crew shakes their heads at some of the stuff that comes back to them, it’s a no-questions-asked warranty, and they hold good to it no matter what you did. The warranty covers the knife itself for its lifetime, too, so it’s transferable if you sell or give a knife away. If you pick one up from someone else, you don’t need any sort of proof of purchase. They don’t cover normal wear and tear like worn or scratched coating (that just adds character!), dulled edges, or…

6 min
tang talk

“THE BENEFITS OF FULL TANG? THAT’S AN EASY ONE: SUPER STRONG CONSTRUCTION AND AN INCREDIBLY LONG LIFE FOR YOUR KNIFE.” Tang is an odd-sounding word mentioned throughout the knife community. For those new to the wide-spanning blade-filled world, you may be perplexed as to what it is, what it’s referring to, and most importantly, how does it affect your blade choice and use? The term, tang, refers to the bottom portion of the blade that will either fit partially into the handle, actually run the length of the handle, or just barely be inserted into the handle. When discussing the tang of a knife, these three options offer both pros and cons, as well as a combination of each, depending upon your intended use, the environment you’re using your blade, and your…