Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Know Your Tactical Knives

*This is a "live" glossary for knife. Will be updated as they are encountered in future review
I am not very much a collector of knives but i am appreciative of a well made purpose-built cutter. When we were growing up in the 80's with shows such as MacGyver, A-Team and Airwolf; together with heroic cartoon such as Thundercats and Dungeon & Dragon, it is a little wonder that most of them my age could not outlive these series.
Owning a knife is just one of them. Before i continue, let me put it in writing that this interest of collecting knives is just like collecting other collectibles - they are harmless. At best, the features that "sing song" about the knife is akin to a geek talking about his supercomputer that he just built.
Today, I will start off by reviewing one of the knife i have. Here is some glossary to help some of you along. I will continue to update the glossary as i use them in the future articles.

Common Glossary
CRKT - Columbia River Knife & Tools. A knife maker. Most of the knifes i have are from this company.
EDC - Every Day Carry. Meaning they are meant for everyday use.
Folder - foldable knife
Foldie - see Folder
Fixed - well, not a foldie.
LAWKS - Lake And Walker Knife Safety system. This system convert a foldie into a virtual fixed. So, when you go on a stabbing spree (like to tenderize that piece of 1kg beef for barbeque-ing), the foldie won't fold into your hands and add your blood as marinate). One need to manually LAWKS the blade via a toggle on the foldie.
AutoLAWKS - Just like LAWKS, but automatically locks the blade.
VEFF Serration - An unique serration invented by Tom Veff that cuts through virtually anything. For deboning, you still need a cleaver. Should it be attempted, will just take more time (on bone).
Flipper - No reference to Willy the Whale. This is a tang or extension that allows a blade to be flipped open with one finger operation in one swift motion. Don't hesitate here. Just.Flip.It.
Hissatsu - Think Japanese Samurai sword. Only smaller.
Tanto -  Not to be mistaken for the local thugs. This blade is unlike the conventional Spearhead where there is two distinct angled cutting edge
Spearhead - As the name implies. It is spear-like.
Clip - a metal thingy that attaches to the knife body that allows you to clip it in your belt, shoes, socks, underwear or wherever that is comfortable for you.
Locking liner - basically a simple mechanism to lock the knife in place. One would need to press it down, usually with the thumb to a foldie back. Works well with the LAWKS and AutoLAWKS.
OutBurst - Assisted opening by CRKT. You flip the knife 30 degree and it spring into action. No Viagra needed.
High Hollow Grind - Refers to the sharpening technique that provides a very sharp cutting edge very suitable for skinning and slicing purposes. It does not refer to anyone grinding on your body at high places.

Handle material
G10 - Not referring to some rap posse that called themselves G-Unit. Unlike the rappers, G-10 refers to a process where glass fiber (fiberglass) are bonded by high pressure. They do not absorb water and are not conductive to electricity. They are usually used on knife handle and are textured. They are used extensively in tactical weapons as they are cooler to grip in hot weather and warmer to grip in cold weather.  Now you don't need to worry that the knife will leave your hand if you swing it around - even if your hands are wet. (disclaimer : you are supposed to grip the knife handle firmly for it not to leave your hand)
Zytel - High Strength, abrasion resistant and impact resistant material. They are light and strong. Used by Ben Johnson in his spike shoe when he created the world record (100m). Shoe is 30grams only.

Blade material
8Cr14MoV - a stainless steel originated from China with same characteristic as an AUS-8 steel. It offer best cut for the buck, so to say. Making knives build with this material to have lower cost with same performance of the more expensive material.
AUS-8 - Japanese made stainless steel with medium carbon content with high chromium that provide good balance of toughness, edge sharpness and corrossion resistance
HRC - Not Hard Rock Cafe but refers to the Rockwell hardness index (HR). The C behind denotes that the indention test used a 120degrees angled diamond cone at 150kilogram force (kgf). The harder the steel, the higher the number. However, there got to be balance as the harder steel would be more brittle. As comparison, an average Axe has HRC 40-45.
Deep Belly - Refers directly to the unmistaken bulge at the front tip to mid blade that resemble a "belly". Now you can tell the girls you drink with on Friday afterwork that your Deep Belly are good for cutting.

*This is a "live" glossary for knife. Will be updated as they are encountered in future review.

Upcoming Review : CRKT M21-12G, CRKT Hissatsu Folder


  1. Nice one bro... You should also check out the knifenuts forum i pointed you out to before, there are lots to learn from the sifus there!!

  2. :D will only get better once the reviews comes in. TQ Sinsei!

  3. King - :) Noted. I a bit shy lah...i am not a collector per se...just some wannabe.

  4. No need so shy, there are serious (and I mean real serious) collectors there, and there are those who are just keen (no pun intended) on sharp stuff. Gadgets also sometimes included... Irregardless, everyone who is there are willing to share knowledge for all to learn. Can join and just be a lurker if you're really that shy lah... :)

    Hope to see you on board soon bro!!

  5. Gotta say, it's pretty awesome that you have this list here. It's hard for some of us to know all the specifics and jargon of all topics. I wish other websites did the same thing. Thanks!