Knife

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Nighthiker
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Knife

Post by Nighthiker » Apr 29 2003 7:27 am

I noted a lot more folks are packing knifes out on the trails. While mtn. biking from Dead Horse State Park two weeks ago I even noted a person had a large knife strapped to their lower leg. This past weekend I noted some folks were packing large knifes, several K-bars, throwing axe, machetes (boy scouts). I also came across one person with a large water bottle and a bigger knife more like a mini sword.

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ck_1
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Post by ck_1 » Jul 17 2003 10:02 am

Knives don't bother me on the trail...I think it's kinda funny to see guys with those big knives. I always wonder what the heck they'll do with a knife that big. Just seems like added weight to me.

I'll stick to my Leatherman.
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'The Journey is the Destination!'

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J&SHike
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Post by J&SHike » Jul 17 2003 12:41 pm

Ever since man walked he has needed a good cutting tool. Yes, I agree rambo type knives serve no real purpose in the bush. I carry a Frosts-Mora Sweeden, nine inches total length, four inch blade. Good basics you want in a knife are: A full tang, comfortable handle, wide sharpening bevel, straight pointed tip, and a high carbon steel blade. Stainless steel looks "pretty" but cannot be sharpened easily and doesn't retain it's sharpness as well as high carbon. As far as "swiss-army" knives go they're worthless in a real situation where you rely on your knife. Multi-tools have their place, in your glove box. I have a leatherman wave, it has it's uses around the house but I never carry it on the trail. If your life depends on that screwdriver on the trail then you seriously need to rethink what you bring on the trail. Above all, you need to practice using a knife, what good is a tool when you need it the most if you don't have the experience of using it, especially in the time of dire need. The less moving parts the better.
Joe
"That which does not kill us makes us stronger" F.N.

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BoyNhisDog
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Post by BoyNhisDog » Jul 17 2003 1:09 pm

While I don't quite agree with all you say Joe, the Frost's Mora is one of the best fixed blades available. We do agree on that. If I am going to higher altitude hikes which take me out of the lower sonoran desert I do include a light-weight Sandanavian style fixed blade. You can do a lot with one of those if needed. That is my favorite style fixed blade.

I just had Jukka Hankala in Finland build me a puukko of his own design. The Finnish puukko is a traditional knife that has evolved for 1000 years in a harsh climate and is used for general utility and day to day survival. The Vikings used these much more than those swords they carried. The Mora is a very affordable type of puukko. Here is my Hankala. It has a four inch blade and weighs 4.5 oz. I like the curly birch handle. He forges the carbon blade by hand. This master craftsman has won awards for his work. He lives on a working farm way up there in the arctic light, but makes these fine knives almost full time now.

Hankala Tuhkuri


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Glen

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Snick33
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Post by Snick33 » Jul 18 2003 10:10 am

I still carry my Boy Scout knife I got in 1958. It has a large 3" blade, a small 1 3/4" blade, an awl, a can opener, and a bottle opener / screwdriver combo. Its ability to keep an edge has always been questionable, but I carry a small "Arkansas Stone" that puts an edge on it quickly. The blade will fold onto your thumb in a heartbeat, (something I've grown used to in 45 years), and I'm sure it fails any number of modern safety tests. I've lost it a dozen times but it always comes back to me. Last year I left it at the stone cabin on Deer Creek but it was still there two weeks later when I returned. I carefully keep it in my hiking backpack, my frame pack, with my digital camera, the glove compartment of my Jeep, my briefcase, or the kitchen drawer. I recall leaving it at the America West Club at Sky Harbor, because I found it in my briefcase and knew I'd never make it through screening. I recall thinking then, that men had changed the world forever with knives far smaller than mine It's always a pleasant surprise when I find it, and I'm sad when I lose it. I remember filleting brookies with it while fishing with my dad in the UP of Michigan in the 60’s. I remember dad showing me how to use that knife to make the final tweaks when you mortise hinges on a door. I remember whittling a whistle for my son Teddy with it, and I remember removing a splinter from my son Kyle's finger with it last year. I gave it to my daughter Kerry in the 90’s because she turned out to be the “outdoorsy” one of the trio. A few years later, she and I were camping and I noticed she wasn’t using it. She was carrying a shiny new Gerber. I asked if I could borrow it back because I missed it. She agreed. I own several other knives, some of which are far better quality, and some are far safer; but none have the memories that it does.

I'd state in my will that it be buried with me, but I'd probably lose it for good then.
Mother nature seems to like humans, and not just because they taste like chicken

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olesma
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Post by olesma » Jul 18 2003 1:15 pm

BoyNhisDog wrote:Here is my Hankala.
That is one darned fine looking knife Glenn - where can I get one. I am a big lover of finely crafted knives. It's hard to find one that is both beautiful, functional, and durable. That one looks like it fits the bill.

Very impressive.
'Weird is a relative, not an absolute.' - A. Einstein

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Snick33
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PS Joe

Post by Snick33 » Jul 18 2003 1:32 pm

I sometimes take my "useless" Swiss Army knife with me to play with when I get to where I'm going. I open up all the implements and pretend they are hydraulically operated, I even make noises when I open them. Or I put the whole thing in my hand and play "Edward Scissor Hands". I also have some buttons on my shirt that I don't button, but I carry them along with me hiking too! I'm into the "total hiking experience". :wink:
Mother nature seems to like humans, and not just because they taste like chicken

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BoyNhisDog
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Post by BoyNhisDog » Jul 18 2003 2:11 pm

olesma wrote:
BoyNhisDog wrote:Here is my Hankala.
That is one darned fine looking knife Glenn - where can I get one. I am a big lover of finely crafted knives. It's hard to find one that is both beautiful, functional, and durable. That one looks like it fits the bill.

Very impressive.
Olesma, here is the site: Hankala's Tuhkuri site

As you can see he has other offerings as well. The Tuhkuri set me back 130 euros plus shipping. That is extremely cheap for a handcrafted, forged knife made the old world way. The sheath is one of the best I have seen. It has a thin wooden liner and the knife snaps into place, the tolerances are so perfect. The flat of the blade is left in the natural state after forging. You can still see some hammer marks. He makes others that are polished perfectly too.

This one is the sharpest knife I have ever used. The Finns are, well finnicky about sharp. This one is meant to be used for all manner of chores, cooking, woodwork, you name it. I doubt you will find another style knife that will do such good general utility work.
Glen

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J&SHike
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Post by J&SHike » Jul 20 2003 5:48 pm

Yes Glen the swedes do make the best cutting edges around. :) Leave it to the vikings to produce good steel :wink: . I also have a Gransfors axe, wow now thats sharp!
Joe

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BoyNhisDog
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Post by BoyNhisDog » Jul 20 2003 6:21 pm

Joe, you are a man who knows his tools. I have the Granfors Mini Hatchet and the Wildlife Hatchet as well. I have never used an axe so sharp and so comfortable as a GB. I would like to add the Small Forest axe sometime. I have a wood stove that heats the place in Winter. Those hachets make life a whole lot easier.

Forged and crafted Nordic tools are still the best IMHO. 8)
Glen

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mttgilbert
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Post by mttgilbert » Jul 21 2003 12:28 am

So, you two seem to advocate fixed blade knives (albeit relatively short ones). Aside from the strength generated through the full tang, what functional benefits does a non-folding knife have?

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olesma
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Post by olesma » Jul 21 2003 10:54 am

matt gilbert wrote:So, you two seem to advocate fixed blade knives (albeit relatively short ones). Aside from the strength generated through the full tang, what functional benefits does a non-folding knife have?
I'm actually a fairly big advocate of fixed bladed knives myself. I find that the strength is the major benefit. That strength also leads to greater control and greater safety.

Oddly enough, I treat a fixed bladed knife with much more respect than a folding knife. Even though I've been injured by folding blades far more often than by a fixed blade (as a young pup I should add - back when I was young and inexperienced). I started out with a k-bar my dad gave me - but didn't get much utility out of it - too big and it was always in the way. My favorite for years was the Air Force Survival knife. Loved that blade. Then it was stolen a few years ago and has not been replaced. (my decreased outdoor activity has precluded the need for it)

I carry two folding blades at all times (except at the airport) a small Victorinox Penn knife, and a Spyderco rescue knife (I'm pretty sure its a Dragonfly) with a split blade, half serrated, half normal. I get plenty of utility from both of them doing my daily stuff - but out in the field I really prefer a fixed blade knife.

I'm seriously considering shelling out for that knife of Glenn's - of course I'll have to get buyoff from the wife, so the most likely eventuality is a re-purchase of another Air Force model.

Oh, well.

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BoyNhisDog
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Post by BoyNhisDog » Jul 21 2003 11:16 am

Matt, you touched on one of the major attributes of a fixed blade, strength. They are easier to keep clean and they do not fold. Any folder, no matter how good a lock it has can and will fold. Get a little sand in the wrong place and you may get some very bad news. That happened recently to one of my best locking knives but I caught it and no problem.

The folder has a lot of very good things going for it though. In some ways it is just more convenient. They are easy to carry and to keep close at hand. On most lower desert trail hikes they will do just fine. I did break the lock on a very strong well know model once at 10,000' trying to stay alive when a major unforcasted storm came down on us. We did survive and learned a lot from that experience. At the higher altitudes like that a storm can just form as we all know on a 110 degree day and the temps up there can drop into the danger zone if you are wet. It was on my mind during a hike I did yesterday with Lizard. The weather stayed fine but things could have been different of course. It is good to just be prepared. A group of scouts who went up there a few decades ago were not and three died. Here is my account of a pleasant hike to altitudes where things can and will go awry at times. Summit Adventure Hope you enjoy.

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mttgilbert
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Post by mttgilbert » Jul 21 2003 12:21 pm

I used to carry a USAF survivor knife too, the camillus one. I gave it up and went back to a folding blade because I never felt like I was using it too its full potential and because it was heavy. I'm really considering making the investment in a good (short) fixed blade again. So, this turned out to be a timely discussion. Thank you.

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J&SHike
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Post by J&SHike » Jul 27 2003 9:13 pm

Matt, just like Glenn said every folder has a "pin" and when put to the test will break and then your SOL. This is one of the main reasons, besides strength that I don't carry a folder. In fact my backup knife is the same knife I carry as my primary, a Frosts-Mora sweeden. They're fairly cheap, around $15-$20 and not too heavy, around 4oz.
Glen, I really like that H.K. and by the way I have the small forest axe from Gransfors, and man can it deliver! :)
Joe and Sara

"That which does not kill us makes us stronger" F.N.

Http://www.Gransfors.com/

Http://www.swedishknives.com
Click on the "Clipper" series

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Brothermak
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Post by Brothermak » Sep 06 2003 4:34 am

I use:
SOG Seal Pup(fixed blade, 5oz, 4.75"blade) and a multitool for backpacking. Mini Swiss Knife(with cool LED light) and my CRKT M16-03 for everyday carry.
~Michael

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BoyNhisDog
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Post by BoyNhisDog » Sep 06 2003 2:41 pm

There are a lot of good choices here.

Hey Joe, look what I recently got, a Mora 2000, a lightweight inexpensive Swedish answer to the survival knife. I carry this dayhiking now. This blade takes an extremely sharp edge as you are well used to. ->Mora 2000

Here is a photo of my Custom Hankala and my new Granfors Bruks Small Forest Axe on top of my woodstove. -> Excellent Woodsbumming Combo

Another view-> Finnish Blade, Swedish Axe, both forged

I have found these to be some of the finest tools on this planet. No I would not carry the Small Forest Axe while hiking. :lol:
Glen

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merwin
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Post by merwin » Oct 13 2003 10:33 am

Last edited by merwin on Oct 14 2003 8:20 am, edited 1 time in total.

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pfredricks
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hmmmmmm!

Post by pfredricks » Oct 13 2003 11:42 am

merwin wrote:

As for the “overcompensation mechanism” attitudes, give the high school psychology a rest. Should I assume that smaller the knife, the more endowed one must be? I may perform one task with small blade and minutes later another task with a large blade. What are the psychological or physiological deviances evident in this behavior? “Perhaps the increase in knife ownership and brandishing them is an outward overcompensation mechanism.” Well, I certainly am “compensating” for not having the more powerful claws and teeth of other animals to accomplish tasks just as I use binoculars to see farther and wear clothes to protect me from the environment. Is that all about sex as well?
ahhhh......whew!
Since my comments were referred to directly as "high school" I feel that I should be kind enough to reply and clear up some things, as well as, respond to the questions posed.
First of all, I would like to make clear that my comments were made in jest. (I cant believe that i have to say that)
The knife as hoo hoo poker symbol is hardly an unheard of concept. It struck me as funny at the time so I mentioned it. Maybe its "flaming" or perhaps it made someone laugh, like it did me. It am sorry for seemingly having upset you and sorry if it hit too close to home.
Insofar as the wearing clothes and using binoculars having to do with sex.......Don't be silly. It has nothing to do with sex. Clearly it has much more to do with one's relationship with their father. (again that was kidding) :lol:

Rarely has a post struck such a nerve with me. I do find it fascinating that someone has taken so much time to decry the "holier than thou attitude" yet on the other hand takes direct aim on other posters, in fact, denouncing others' words, in an attempt to place this posters words above the others. And to use such a trifle attempt at belittlement. Very weak indeed. I did learn a little psychology in high school and "delusions of grandeur" keep coming to mind. Everyone has an opinion... silly or not. But, I do get what is being expressed here. I think the different views keep it interesting. That's why it's called a forum. Otherwise it would be called a lecture.

I very much enjoyed reading this post and all the posts. I must admit that I never gave any thought to fixed vs folding. I always carried a folding knife. I will reconsider thanks to the exceptional wisdom of the HAZ members. Thanks for sharing your knowledge.
regards,
Pete
Maybe, I'm out of place-----I dunno... PM me and let me know.
Back to the topic at hand-thanks
Last edited by pfredricks on Oct 13 2003 2:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
"I'd feel better if we had some crampons. Oh, what the hell, let's go for it..." — Common climbing last words.

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merwin
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Post by merwin » Oct 13 2003 1:55 pm

Last edited by merwin on Oct 14 2003 8:21 am, edited 2 times in total.

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merwin
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Post by merwin » Oct 13 2003 2:29 pm

Let’s try this again (new and improved posting) :oops:

Matt,

Hygiene can be a strong reason to go with a fixed blade as well as durability. Think condiments, peanut butter, fish guts, etc… Simpler to clean - and simple can be a good thing. There are a number of high quality lightweight fixed blades out there. Many will weigh less than a folder of equivalent strength. It’s a rather personal thing when it comes to what feels right in your hand and fits with your gear load.

Sometimes the method of carry is more of an issue than the knife itself as long as the knife is of good quality. A poorly executed sheath can make a fixed blade knife a hassle or even unsafe to carry. Good examples of lightweight, useful and safe knives can be seen in BoyNhisDog' posts.

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