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Knives Illustrated September - October 2021

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

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United States
Engaged Media
7 Issues

in this issue

3 min
the lucky knife

Do you feel lucky? Well, do you? And if you do, then I wonder if you think it has anything to do with what you’re carrying in your pocket this minute. I don’t consider myself to be superstitious. And normally I don’t believe my destiny can be swayed one way or the other by the presence or absence of some charm or talisman. Yet to be on the safe side, yes, I have at times put my trust in one mystical object whose magic has yet to be explained by modern science. I speak, of course, of the lucky knife. The theory of the lucky knife holds that luck is a type of energy that can be stored in objects or living creatures in a similar way that electricity is stored in…

6 min
benchmade’s claymore auto: sleek and strong

1. Benchmade Claymore Auto SPECS: > Benchmade Claymore Auto • Overall Length: 8.60 inches• Closed Length: 5.00 inches• Blade Length: 3.60 inches• Blade Thickness: 0.114 inch• Handle Thickness: 0.60 inch• Blade Material: CPM-D2 tool steel• Blade Hardness: 60-62HRC• Blade Style: Drop point• Blade Finish: Cobalt black• Weight: 3.50 ounces• Pocket Clip: Deep carry, tip up, right or left• Handle Material: Black or Ranger Green Grivory• Lock Mechanism: Push button• Origin: USA• MSRP: $230 Benchmade.com With 44 states allowing the ownership and carry of at least some form of automatic knife, auto knives are becoming more popular than ever. Benchmade has long been a top tier producer of automatics, and its new Claymore shows that history and experience with autos in its refined design. Benchmade manages to pack power and strength into a slim, lightweight…

7 min
surgical precision

“I’VE OWNED HUNDREDS OF KNIVES AND THIS ONE EASILY RANKS IN THE TOP FIVE OF THEM ALL.” A few years ago, I was in Escanaba, Michigan, visiting a couple of knifemakers in the area. While I was sitting in Mike Stewart’s office at Bark River Knives, Dan Tope walked in, spoke with Mike for a second, and then left in a hurry, presumably to get back to a grinder. Mike told me that Dan was an up-and-coming maker to watch. He wasn’t wrong, not by a long shot, and Tope’s Covert Field Scalpel is just one example why. Ever since that trip to Michigan, I’ve been keeping an eye on Dan and his work. I’m not the only one, either. His Facebook group, Tope Nation, has close to 10,000 rabid fans of…

1 min
delta sheath, llc offers variety of standard sheaths

Based in Escanaba, Michigan, Delta Sheath is a premier provider of production and semi-production sheaths. It has a longstanding relationship with a number of knifemakers, including Bark River Knives, Blue Ridge Knives, Parker River Knife, and Rapid River Knifeworks. While the company offers one-off sheaths and other leather projects on its website, what it refers to as “Therapy Builds” due to the comfort and fun they provide to the staff, it produces a large line of standard sheaths that are distributed through DLT Trading and Blade HQ. They are available in a few different sizes and a range of colors. If you’re in doubt as to which style or size sheath you need for your knife, Delta Sheath’s experts are simply a phone call away.…

1 min
just in case

It seems that everything is labeled “tactical” these days. The dictionary meaning can be very broad: “of or relating to a maneuver or plan of action designed as an expedient toward gaining a desired end or temporary advantage,” according to Dictionary.com. It’s most often used in reference to military operations. As civilians, we want things to be expedient to gain an advantage too. When it comes to an everyday carry knife, most often we refer to it as “tactical” if we have it in mind as a possible last-resort tool for self-defense. In the following section, we present reviews of several knives that we might see as taking on a potential life-saving role in desperate circumstances. Here we present some karambits—surely defensive—as well as some small, affordable Cold Steel fixed blades,…

7 min
sinbad's edc

I know I’m dating myself by saying this, but I grew up watching Ray Harryhausen’s amazing stop-motion animation on films such as “Jason and the Argonauts,” “The Golden Voyage of Sinbad,” and “Clash of the Titans.” Tell you what: If I ever did have to face an angry mob of skeletons and the classic scimitar wasn’t available, the CRKT Ritual wouldn’t be a bad choice for armament. From the moment you pick it up, the Ritual calls to mind riding horseback in the desert, chasing down a lamp that hides a djinn that will grant your wishes…for a price. This was one of the most highly anticipated 2021 releases from CRKT, and for good reason. Just look at it! BY THE NUMBERS Make no mistake, this is a big knife. It is just…