Monday, June 4, 2012

Final Thoughts on Malodorous Thoughts aka The End

With my posts growing more and more infrequent it is time to give this blog some closure rather than just let rot.  I shall be leaving the blogging to those folks more interested in the world and motivation. Malodorous Thoughts will no longer be updating. Is Game Over. But at least I don't get a xenomorph implanted in me.

I've had some fun here and I hope I've either informed or entertained at least a few visitors. A big thank you very much for your readership and comments. Special thanks go out to Breda for getting me into the blog world through her blog. Alan for letting me be heard several times on Vicious Circle and even the Squirrel Report. Dan for being my top commenter and supporter. FarmDad for putting up with my pestering about knife posts. Gay Cynic for being a supportive and funny rascal in general. And much thanks to the entirety of the GunBlogger Conspiracy IRC channel. There are so many of you that I want to mention, that I can't cause there are too damn many of you!  Also, to the gun and knife blogosphere at large. There are so many good people and great reads out there. Thank you all so very much for your support and be well. Carry your guns and your knives proudly and safely. -Roadkill

Ka-bar/Becker BK-17 Clip Point Review

I've had some time to use the BK-17 some and to gather my thoughts on it. First and foremost, the finish was a terrible idea. It is simply too rough. The powdercoat on my Ontario SP46 is not super slick or anything but it is miles smoother than the skateboard tape finish on the BK. I am very glad I removed the finish.  That concludes the serious cons of this knife. The following is a gushing report of this knife's superiority.

I shall be extra blunt about the BK-17's grip. This is the most ergonomically comfortable knife I've ever handled. Gentlemen, if your penis was as ergonomic as this, your wives and girlfriends would not give you any rest. My hand feels damn near good enough to effect an orgasm. 

The scales are zytel, which is a very common plastic used for knife handles.  In fact, the BK-17 came with both a black pair and a tan pair.  These handles both have an perfect palm swell. The outline of the grip includes a solid choil along with a modest saber curve at the butt.  Despite the zytel being smooth these features give the knife excellent retention even when wet.  The jimping is properly placed, though could stand to be just a tad deeper. This knife is great for use in a saber grip(blade up, thumb on spine).  However, it is also very comfortable in a hammer grip(blade up, fist around the grip) or even a reverse grip(blade down and edge forward). What is more surprising is that it is reasonably comfy for the newfangled pikal grip(blade down, edge rearward) that the cool kids are all talking about!

The sheath is a jump rated nylon military style job that is simple and works. It has two snaps to hold the grip, a plastic insert to protect the edge and the sheath from the edge, MOLLE mountings, belt loop, and even an extra pocket that fits a Leatherman Fuse rather nicely.  It is fine for field carry and some belt carry. However, it is not suitable for concealed carry or for a quick draw.

The steel is a good quality tool steel.  1095 Cro-Van is a high carbon steel, with a tiny bit of chromium and vanadium.  It is very strong and is well known for holding a good edge, but of course it is not terribly corrosion resistant. All carbon steel blades should be kept oiled and cleaned often.  I could get a serviceable edge on it, but not a great one. I am starting to think that my crock sticks simply do not like carbon steel blades. I shall see about getting a new system to try soon.

This knife is not intended for offensive use. It just isn't long enough.  However, the excellent retention, mid-size, reasonable weight, and clip point design make it very functional as a defensive blade with a proper carry sheath. 

For outdoor use, the clip point will make short work of game and take care of most cooking and other small camp tasks.  However, batoning is not going to be as easy as with the drop point version.  Just over 4 inches is a bit short for batoning and the false edge will cause damage to your baton.

The BK-17 and its brothers the drop point 16 and the trailing point 15 are certainly winner for Becker and Kabar. They are the right size for a lot of work and carry. They need to dump the finish or offer versions without. Kabar/Becker should also offer a kydex belt sheath as well. As just an extra to buy or as a replacement for the cordura MOLLE one. Either way, I think they'll pick up some sales on it.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Becker BK-17 Modification

A few days ago, I decided I didn't like the finish on the BK-17. It is much similar to skateboard tape in its appearance and texture. I find that somewhat strange for a knife to be so rough. Therefore, I decided I wanted to strip the finish off and go with a classic stainless look.

Hitting the forums I found several other folks that shared my opinion and whom had stripped their Beckers. One agent often used is Citrusstrip.  This paint and finish remover is none fuming and biodegradable.  I dunked my BK-17 in this gloop and threw it into a disposable cake pan and waited for 20 hours.

I rinsed the agent off with hot water and tried removing the finish with a wire brush. I had expected the finish to come right off but had no results.  I was stumped for a while until I remembered I had a dental pick.  I was able to put a scratch into the finish and amazingly the pick slid under the coating. The coating had become like a latex. By sticking the pick under this skin I was able to raise it up enough to pull large bits off.  Together with the pick and a razor blade, I managed to scrape off of the old coating off within an hour.

It will nose need lots of sanding to give it a a bright finish and remove the scratches that the coating removal left behind. I look forward to a finish product in a few days!

UPDATE: After discussing my finishing options with some of the guys in #sharpthings, I decided to clean up the blade really good before I choose my route.  Under the extremely rough traction coating is a stonewash finish.  All it took was a good scrub with hot water and dish soap to make this knife look pretty darn good.  I'll leave it like this for a while.

Friday, May 11, 2012

First Look at the Becker BK-17 Clip Point


Finally, the main production version of the carbon steel Becker Knife & Tool/Ka-Bar BK-17 clip point is out! The grip is comfy and has a very solid feel and heft. Balance is very nice. Jimping has a good depth. Sharpness is passable, but I think a few minutes on my croc sticks should get it going a bit better.


This one just came in a few hours ago from BladeHQ. I used the free shipping option and surprisingly USPS got this to me from Utah within 3 days. I am not so pleased with the fact that it was ordered Friday night and didn't ship until Wednesday.  There are both bigger knife shops and smaller ones that could have worst had it gone on Tuesday. Many could have had it out by Monday night.



Shortly, I'll be hitting the yard for some much needed mowing and this fellow will be on my hip. Perhaps, there will be something to test it on out there.  I'll have more on this knife in the following weeks.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

WTF Becker & Kabar?!

I've been going on about the new Kabar/Becker Tweener series of mid-sized carbon steel knives since the ShotShow in January. Since they were supposed to be shipping this month I started digging around and found that the initial shipments have gone out and slowly folks are getting knives of the first production run. I was naturally very excited until I found this photo of a BK17, the bowie/clip point.

Really guys? Really? That is one shit-tastic fucking huge 'first production run' label on that knife. I've been slobbering for this damn knife and pimping it out for 3 months now, only to be blind sided by some tasteless tacky labeling. Could it be worse if you just had the word "PENIS" emblazoned in rhinestones?

I certainly will not be ordering one of these knives until they reach their 2nd production run. If I choose to buy it then anyway. The prices on these knives are a little high for the size and steel type, too. Maybe they will go down in cost by then. Or just perhaps, I will find something better by then. We shall have to see. Way to go Kabar & Becker.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Update: Meyerco Wharning in the Kitchen

Since my first night used review, I've gotten to use the Wharning a good bit more and also managed to get it into the kitchen a few times. Naturally, I cleaned it well before using it. For cutting up sirloin for stir-fry, the two day old resharpened edge it didn't seem to cut the meat so much as slide through it. This leaves me with no doubt about it's ability to deal with flesh. However, there were some scallions and potatoes that needed work too. The scallion chopped up easily no problem. Working on a large idaho potato and a large sweet potato for a pot of Japanese Curry was a bit more of a story. The high belly makes it even a good cutter for dense tubers. It pure cutting, it out preformed my Benchmade fixed Griptilian, which I tested out with much the same chores once upon a time. Unfortunately, he shortness of the blade was the limitation for dealing with such large tubers. When using this for kitchen work you might want to use mostly small vegetables. It is trickier with big ones, but it will do it if you are careful.

It also has prerformed well at work. However, I am asking my wife to make a paracord harness so this will work with my favored carbiner carry system.

Judging so far by its use and abilities, it would certainly do well as a companion knife to much larger stronger blades in the woods. I can see this little guy gutting a lot of fish and game, and as a cooking tool or just a inexpensive blade for the small tasks.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Review: Lansky Crock Sticks

In a recent post on, Dan posts his top 5 must have items for maintaining knives. First on the list is a sharpening system. I could not agree more. As I've tried to maintain knives over the years, I've been frustrated by my lack of skill with most flat stones. I've often gotten people to sharpening my knives for me or even just bought a new knife when the edge of the old becomes totally useless.

Sharpening systems with guides to help you maintain or resharpen edges at consistent angles are a huge help to those of us who don't have the experience. I had seen them and even used to cheap Smith Sharpener some time ago, but one day I saw a set of Lansky Crock Sticks at a local sporting goods store, and I decided to give it a try. Now my knives stay sharp.

The Lansky Turn Box Crock Sticks is a surprisingly simple yet effective design without bells or whistles. It is effectively a wooden block, with two left and right facing 20 degree and 25 degree holes cut into the top. There two medium grit and two fine grit 5" long alumina ceramic rods will rest. The four rods are stored horizontally from the end where a turning door keeps them inside when not in use.

Setup consists of placing the rods of the desired grit into the holes of the desired edge angle. I prefer the 20 degree edge using medium grit if the knife has gotten pretty dull or the fine grit when touching up or finishing. Then, starting from the top, the edge is kept point downward as you run the knife down the rod while drawing it towards you. You then do the same action for the other side of the blade with the parallel rod. Simple, keep this up in even strokes until the edge smooths out. Easy!

For maintenance, I run the rods under warm water and then scrub them with a rag or paper towels after a few uses. Mind the guide holes and check for debris, blow them out if necessary. Remember those guide holes need to stay uniform so your edges do likewise.

I've had great luck with bringing VG10, AUS-8, 7CR17, and 154cm blade to shaving sharpness. I have had less luck with the 5CR15MoV. I'm unsure about carbon steel. Both my carbon steel knives I've tried to use with this, I found a bit too long to use properly. The 5inch sticks are just too short. However, Lansky makes a kitchen version of this with 9inch sticks. I feel that I really need to pick one up soon.

The Spyderco Sharpmaker that Dan recommends is effectively a much nicer and more elaborate setup than the Lansky. However, the simple Lansky is a third of the price and certainly has less to lose. Having had solid luck with the Lansky, I'll admit that I might want something similar with more features. The Sharpmaker is certainly that.

The Lansky Crock Sticks are simple, inexpensive, and effective. They are by no means perfect. However, they are an excellent starting point for the beginning knife sharpener. This system will pay for itself quickly and tell you if you want or need something more advanced. Even after going with something nicer like the Sharpmaker, you might find the Lanskey going into your kitchen knife drawer or put into your trunk or truck box to serve as a backup.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

First Night Review: Meyerco/Pinkerton Wharning

Recently, I've been visiting's IRC channel and talking knives with the folks there. One of the regulars, Dr. Snubnose, a professional martial arts teacher, NFA qualified firearms instructor, and knife guru, has a lot of interesting things to say about cutting power in knives. Doc is well known on various knife forums for his meat tests for cutting ability. He wraps a large slab of meat in several layers of plastic wrap and then denim to see what knives work the best. Among his top performers included three Wharncliffe style blades. Two of which, the Ronin and Yojimbo, are out of production Spydercos that retailed in the $100 range. However, the third was the Dirk Pinkerton designed Meyerco Wharning. According to the good Doc, this extremely humble $17 knife matched the folding Yojimbo in making 3"- 3 ½” on cuts and slashes with it's 2.75 inch blade. When my wife bade me to order her some paracord to craft with, I also slipped this little guy into the order from BladeHQ for $16.95.

The Wharning is a wharncliffe style blade made from 7CR17 steel. This is not a premium steel in any way. Its roughly equal to 440A. While, this steel will not hold an edge too long, I can safely say that it is simple to resharpen to an effective shaving edge. After cutting open about fifteen thick dense cardboard cases of Tide, it went from a barely shaving factory edge to just sharp. However, less than ten minutes sharpening had it to shaving sharp. Easy!

The blade itself is huge for its stubby length. The stock is pretty thick and stays that way for about half the blade before hitting a slight swedge and sharp straight decline to tip. It is an extremely broad blade with a massive belly. It is a good cutter and the tip control is excellent.

The grips are a cheap micarta canvas. They are semi-smooth. They worked well enough for my dry hands, but I dunno about how well they will hold up against blood or grease. There is a good finger choil that naturally improves grip and retention. While, the grip is rather thin, the belly on the grip is pretty generous. This fills the hand better and makes the short grip work well. On the big negative, there is no jimping past the grips. Control with a thumb well forward on the spine is pretty damn good but it would be perfect with jimping.

The sheath is a pretty basic molded Kydex affair with a metal reversible belt clip. There is enough of a rim where the thumb naturally rests to help push the sheath off when drawing the blade. The choil is exposed and makes drawing much easier. Unfortunately, this taco fold sheath doesn't have any rivet holes that I can use for carbiner carry without using a long tether to the bottom of the sheath.

Overall the Wharning performed well. Cutting boxes, tape, and wrap well. The tip control was great. Ease of resharpening is excellent. Edge retention isn't great, the grips need to be bit rougher, and jimping for the thumb will have to to be added yourself. For $17, the Wharning is a bargain even with its deficiencies. It is replacing my cold steel tanto for now.

On Warriortalk, Dirk Pinkerton himself posted some interesting news for the Wharning. Meyerco has taken the old version off production and is working with Pinkerton to bring an enhanced version with full jimping, textured G10 grips, and even a changed sheath that will be compatible with tec-loks for around the same price as the original. No idea when that will be released, but be assured, I will be picking one up.

UPDATE: The Wharning in the kitchen.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

On Hiatus

Lately nothing really interesting is coming my way for blogging. So, I'm closing up shop for now. I dunno when I'll be back. Whether it become permanent or not, I want to thank you all for reading and for your comments.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Self-Defender Aquitted but Now Homeless in Des Moines

Certainly, when JayG hears of this, his rage-o-meter will go through the roof.

Jay Rodney Lewis, a former guard and law enforcement officer, was assaulted by two scumbags in a road rage incident. In the 911 call, he is heard to repeatedly them to get away from him before he was forced to shoot. However, the police force decided that he should have done more to get away from the situation and he was formally charged and told to post $225,000 cash bail. Unable to post, Lewis was forced to endure 112 days in jail while a week after the shooting, his apartment complex started going through eviction actions when they decided that he was "clear and present danger to the health or safety of the other tenants.” The court notices were only served to the apartment. No attempt was made to serve them to him in jail. Therefore, the apartment complex won by default and threw all of his belongings, save for the guns which were confiscated by the evicting deputy, out on the curb. Finally free, Lewis has been rendered homeless, though he does have his IRS call center job back now.

This has me pretty hot. The local PD trying to railroad a man for a self-defense action, and the apartment and court fuck up on a grand scale and allow this man's possessions to be stolen with no change to defend himself. I do believe that the DA has zero business being a civil servant in any capacity beyond condom disposal at the local park. His bail was totally unreasonable and charges were totally bogus. There is no valid reason for the apartment complex's lawyers or the court not to know that Lewis was in lock up. It is impossibly loathsome to commit such acts against a man who even then was innocent until proven guilty. I hope for robust legal action. A pity the bastard that decided to have him evicted can't be thrown into a pit of cobras. He is truly a swine of the proportions of the titular character in a certain Australian horror movie.

I can only hope that Lewis can fully get his life back together. He deserves a break. I would totally understand him moving. I wouldn't want to be anywhere near such a concentration of vermin.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Final Thoughts on the CRKT S.P.E.W.

I've carried the CRKT production version of Alan Folts S.P.E.W. for several days at work stocking the endless shelves of my dark corporate masters. Ai, profit! While, certainly not the sort of job that one respects, it is a good habitat to judge the abilities of a blade.

The E in SPEW stands for Every Day Carry and being carried is exactly what this knife excels at. The excellent sheath system and the fantastic ergonomics of the knife itself work together to produce awesome results. The sheath system as mentioned before is solid for both belt and pocket carry. It retains well, but also isn't hard to get out when needed. The opening has something of a flair that awesome for a bit better re-sheathing once you're used to it. The jimping, the handle shape, and the textured G10 scales are a one-two-three punch that cannot be denied. The grip contour and choil provide excellent and secure purchase for the hand to pull this blade free even without thumbing the sheath off. The jimping, while partially obsurced, keeps the thumb in the proper position. Lastly, the g10 grips have an excellent rough texture that will keep this stable in a sweaty palm. Also, the light weight and small size certainly contributed their fair share of making this blade a true joy to carry.

I knew that the blade steel would weak point of this knife from the beginning. I found the edge catching on plastic wrap. While, it cut paper at first, it did so very jaggedly. It would cut cardboard but rapidly started to loose cutting power. 5Cr15MoV is similar to 420HC which is found in many Gerber blades. It is soft and has paltry .45% of carbon content versus the .75% of AUS-8 which along with 440C serve as the base standard for quality knife steels. It is a soft steel, that I, and other reviewers, found hard to put a good edge on.

Dan at Blade Reviews managed to finally get a decent paper cutting edge after using his considerably greater knowledge and skill of sharpening. Whereas, my skills are very poor and Irely upon a set of lansky Crock Sticks, to take care of my sharpening needs. While, quickly able to restore my AUS-8 and 154CM blades to a proper edge quickly, I was unable to get a good edge on the SPEW myself. However, at work, an ex-meat cutter used a honing steel from the meat cutting room and managed to give the blade enough to barely, poorly shave my arm hair. My Benchmade Griptilian did a better job after 15 minutes on my crock sticks. I have long held that one of advantages for a wharncliffe is ease of sharpening. Sadly, using this steel, I can't say that for the SPEW.

In the end, I grudgingly pronounce this a decent blade at a fair price. However, I say this with clenched teeth and glare angrily at CRKT. This design is flat out one of the best I've had to opportunity to handle and use. The ergonomics and sheath are spot on for what an awesome carry knife should be. They make up partially for the poor choice of blade steel and allow this to be a decent knife, but it should have been an awesome production knife.

It is deeply frustrating that CRKT decided to adhere to a price point rather than go the extra mile and tack on maybe $10 more to the price to provide this with at least something equal to AUS-8 or 440C. Right now, I should be raving about how you all should be hitting BladeHQ, Knife Center, Ebay, and Amazon ordering this knife. It kills me after falling in love with this knives good points. Fortunately, the SPEW is not one of Alan Folts' more expensive custom blades. GP Knives list several with various kinds of G10 grips and in the excellent ATS-34 blade steel for the very reasonable price range of $155-180. If I had the money to spend, I would not hesitate to order one.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Inital Review of the CRKT S.P.E.W. Small Pocket EDC Wharncliffe

The SPEW got here a little over an hour ago and I've been busy checking this neat little knife out. I'm not huge on the blade steel and I can't decide if the name is crap or a memorable trademark, but I think Alan Folts and CRKT are going to make a tidy sum over this new blade.

The blade steel is 5CR15MoV which is also used in the Folts Minimalists. It takes a decent edge and be resharpened very easily, but it will not hold long. It is not especially strong and being a wharncliff means that the tip is the weakest part of the whole knife. I've had two other wharns, the Kershaw Leek and the Cold Steel Kiridashi, that both have bent tips. There is already a 2 Star review from AZ on Knife Center where someone broke the tip off theirs from a "slight amount of abuse". I personally don't know how to take this. Saying abuse indicates misuse on the part of the user. Stainless steel is very unforgiving of physical abuse but very forgiving of neglect.

The factory edge will not win contests. It cuts paper ok, but is a bit on the ragged side. So it is sharp enough to do good work. It is still miles ahead of the edge on the Timberline previously reviewed. Fortunately, being a straight edge, this wharncliffe should be no problem for even the greenest knife sharpener to take proper care of.

The grip on this blade is very comfortable. It feels good in hammer, saber, and reverse grip. The textured G10 looks great and has a good roughness that will aid in retention. The jimping is rough but shallow and unfortunately flawed. The grips do not share the ridges of the passing jimping. Thus only the tip of the thumb ramp has a good roughness for control. A nice choil helps keep this knife in place. The paracord end helps get a better saber grip, but it is somewhat useless in reverse grip.

The sheath is somewhat above average. The choil is exposed and can be gripped when drawing the blade. Also, it is easy to thumb the sheath off of the knife. This means that it could be carried in the pocket without and mounting parts. However, I've found it works well for my normal karbiner carry technique. It comes with paracord for neck carry. Being so light, it should work nicely for that.

It comes with a belt clip, that just manages to work with the thick velcro parts of my rigger's belt. The clip can be fixed for vertical or horizontal carry. The package is slim. It rides well and conceals well offhand and strong hand in both modes of carry.

However, the design of the sheath means that the clip will be mounted at the bottom so it is something of a high ride in horizontal. In vertical, it is easy to configure to draw from hammer, saber, and even reverse grips. It especially disappears in small of the back vertical carry. The knife is too small and flexy to cause spine damage should you fall.

For defensive use, it's reasonably sharp and fast. I'm sure it'll hurt someone very badly if they go for your gun. Not sure if it will survive a bone hit.

Going to be EDCing this to work for a few weeks in place of my Cold Steel Mini-tac Tanto. As much as I wish for better steel, I think this knife will sell well at the price point. It is a very neat design. I hate to see potential so limited by cheap steel.

Update: Final thoughts on the SPEW.

Fenix P2D Review Repost

This is a repost of my review on the Fenix P2D I made over on

I just got stable power and internet back here in lower western Kentucky. As most of you know we got hit by a nasty icy storm. Ice has destroyed countless trees, poles, and power lines. Its been cold and nasty. When the lights went out, I was at work, a Walmart. When a Walmart's power goes out, there's a lot of work to do. First, customers must be quickly ushered to the cashier lanes, as register backup power is limited. Next, the store must be closed and all customers out, or gathered in a safe place. The freezers must be kept closed and the cold walls and bunkers must be covered in cardboard and plastic to keep the temperature from rising. If things do not improve within a few hours, cold things must be quickly removed from the floor, and put in coolers. Sadly, generators are 'ordered' from Home Office, and as Kentucky was being crushed by ice, Home Office told us we were on our own.

Many months ago, I decided that I needed a good EDC flashlight. Something small that would keep out of the way but be bright and long lasting enough in case of disaster. After some research I ordered a Fenix P2D Premium Q5 Cree XR-E. A small LED flashlight powered by a 123 lithium battery. These batteries are expensive in retail stores, but inexpensive from online sources. I ordered a 20pack case of Rayovac batteries for it and my wife and my Surefire g2 LED lights.

The p2d q5 has multiple light modes. 12 lumen - 30hrs, 55 lumen - 5.5 hours, 107 lumen - 2.5 hours, SOS mode(blinks the SOS signal), and also has a one hour turbo mode of 180 lumens and a strobe at the same brightness.

The 12 lumen mode was plenty of light for basic movement through the store(Supercenter) with or without the security lights. For checking aisles, I used the 107 lumen mode the most. The throw could illuminate from at least 100 yards once the security lights were out. The basic 55 lumen mode was the most useful. Turned skyward or set down, it would act as a electric candle and provide enough illumination to move around reasonably well for at least at a 30 ft radius on the salesfloor. About 15ft radius for actual work. In the narrow back areas, the 12 lumen mode was ample for good illumination. The higher power modes were mostly unused except for checking for customers or illuminating important work. A single fresh 123 battery lasted all night, while I pocketed the already used battery for backup. It kept going afterwards at home too. Where it was used from just finding our stock of candles, flashlights, and batteries to reading, to going to the bathroom.

After all the heavy use, I think I got about 16 hours of use out of that one fresh battery. There are some issues with this light. The light is that it is a bit slippery and the lanyard doesn't come with any adjustably. I had already addressed the lanyard issue by adding a spring fastener from a tippman marker's barrel cover. This kept the light secured to my wrist while I generally carried the light in cigar fashion.

This is one incredible light, and one that came in very handy and has continued to serve me well in the absence of electricity. I've just found out that there is a new version, the P2D0 that looks to be even more grippy and should serve very well in cigar carry. I think my wife needs a good EDC light, and she might end up with one.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Surprise Knife Buy, CRKT Dragon

Went shopping with the wife today and got to visit this area's biggest and best knife seller. I got to check out several awesome knives that I've been wanting to handle.

The Benchmade Bedlam Axis felt awesome in the hand and was an awesome blade. However $130 was a bit out of budget. I also got to handle an AUS8 version of Cold Steel's Subhilt OSS fighter. I must have the San Mai version of this blade! The grip is great! Then in the CRKT area, I found one that I've considered for a long time and the price was dead on at $27 even. The CRKT Dragon.

The Dragon is a Kasper Crawford designed Warncliffe blade fighter made of a passable midrange steel. It has G10 scales, a lackluster Kydex sheath complete with subpar belt clip, and a choil deep enough to be considered a subhilt! Yes, folks. SUB. HILT. It feels great in a normal and reverse grip. The jimping is sharp and good. The grip curves to provide even more retention and the pommel is a decent chunk of exposed steel that could break a window or a skull. All for $27!

Some folks say that the Dragon looks like a kitchen knife. Well, I've used plenty of my carry knives in the kitchen. If it can cut raw vegetables and meat well, it'll cut a human from throat to groin with equal aplomb.

It looks like a rather nice companion for my Sig 245. It'll be useful to compare the S.P.E.W. when it comes in this weekend. Hopefully. Warncliffes are everywhere!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Dratted Weakness, New Knife Inbound

Man, two weeks without updating? Am I lazy or what? But really hasn't been much going on or really interesting since Shot Show. Meh.

However, I do have a new knife incoming from Knife Center. It is the horribly named CRKT SPEW or Small Pocket EDC Warncliffe. A very cool design made of a very mediocre steel. Perhaps it will exceed my expectations. I wasn't going to order it until I noticed that shipping it would only cost me $2.99... At a paltry $31.94 combined, I was unable to resist. I should stop checking the new arrival sections of Knife Center and BladeHQ.

I am hoping that this will tide me over until the release of the Becker BK17 in April.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Kabar's 2012 Catalog Released & Pricing Info

Kabar released the PDF to their 2012 Catalog a few days ago. In it are the new Beckers I'm so excited about and also some more exact stats on them.

The BK15, the largest of these new tweeners, is an Asian tanto style with a 5-1/2" blade and 10 3/8" over all.

The BK16 is a drop point and Ethan Becker's own pick of the litter. It is smaller than the tanto with a 4-3/8" blade and 9-1/4" overall.

The handsome BK17 is a clip point with the same blade and overall length as the BK16.

All three are made in the USA from 1095 cro-van high carbon steel blades, come with both black & brown zytel polymer grips, and a cordura sheath. The MSRP is $107.49.

Traditionally, the dealer cost for Kabar knives is one half of the MSRP. Doing up a few averages based on KnifeCenter's asking price for various Kabar made Beckers, I'm estimating the mark up to be around 22% so we should see these going for about $65.95 at Knife Center. I expect for most sites $60-80 will be the normal range.

That's not a horrible cost for what should be one of the best medium fixed blade knives coming out this year. Especially considering that ESEE-4's are going for around $125. Those should be the medium sized carbon steel blades that these knives will be compared to the most.

I doubt the Becker sheaths are going to be much count. However, for the price savings a decent custom sheath shouldn't be too onerous a purchase. Especially if the performance and quality is up to expectations. Kabar might want to invest in making some good sheaths for customers to buy later or go ahead and offer a more expensive package.

I like all these designs and sizes are right for so many uses. If I like the BK17, I will most likely get the other two as well. They're just that cool.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

2012 Boker Fixed Blades

Boker is starting off the year right with several new additions to the Boker Plus fixed blade line. Several of these are in the small EDC/Neck knife niche. Boker has really been impressing me with their small EDC knives lately. They're usually in good old 440C and the Boker Plus line is usually a hell of a bargain. They've added three that I found rather appealing.

The 440C, Nippon Necker, is an interesting 3inch bladed true tanto, rather than double pointed American Tanto. The scales are G10 and it looks like a really solid choice for an EDC fixed blade. Good lines!

The MTT, is what I refer to as a 'Scalpel-style' knife. The blade is very short in comparison to the grip. It really looks like a great multi-purpose knife with a highly controllable tip. I could see someone using this one a lot as a fixed box cutter or as a hobby knife. Also, featuring G10 grips and 440C steel.

A little more bizzare is this Karambit inspired, Newton Martin K-Bit. This is a classic claw style. Claws are great for opening boxes, cutting lines, and hurting goblins. The ring on this differs from the popular LaGriff-style claw knives, in that the ring is for the middle or the ring finger depending on normal or reverse grip. 440C here again too.

Boker is making a lot of nice small knives these days. I wish they'd use better steels sometimes, but many of today's neck knives are made of sub-par steels and have poor fit and finish so I don't feel I have a lot of room to complain. I look forward to the reviews on these. The K-Bit might be just the thing to replace my poor lost Emerson LaGriff.

Monday, January 23, 2012

CRKT SPEW: Cool New Design, but Who Named it?

One CRKT's 2012 catalog items is coming out is the S.P.E.W. or Small Pocket Everyday Warncliffe. It is a very handsome warncliffe sporting G10 grips with a blade around 3inches designed by Alan Folts, who designed the Minimalist. Looks like a great choice for an EDC knife except that 'SPEW' is what I think when I looked up the steel it's made of. 5CR15MoV is to be better than my personal whipping boy 420hc. 420hc has a place, but I think that is in liners and other parts of knives that don't involve sharp edges. AUS8 and 440C are really a minimum for a serious knife in my opinion.

Also, SPEW? Really? You want to name a knife with an acronym that involves vomiting? Was P.O.O.P already taken?

I'm really liking the design on this. It looks slick as hell. Handsome little blade. Looks right for EDC or for a little emergency goblin shanking. It is going to retail for around $30. If I found one of these local, I might impulse buy. Heck for $20bucks shipped, I'd preorder one now. Close to $40? I'm going to have to really think about it. There's flashlights and Beckers to buy.

Edit: Alan Folts named this one. I was wanting to think that CRKT for some brainfarty reason. Sorry, Alan. I'd love a custom version of this, but man, the name stinks!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Ethan Becker Video of the Becker Line

Here's a great video I found posted on the Shot Show thread in the Becker Knife & Tool subforum on BladeForum. Here Ethan Becker himself shows off the classic Becker knives and the newest ones from Kabar. There's a few in lines in here I love too. I really wish I could get to meet and talk to Mr. Becker!

The reintroduced BK4 actually looks like an awesome small kukri style. Modern, but classically functional. And this is a 30 year old design!

However, the real drooling happens with the new small drop point, tanto, and clip point. They look like the mid sized multi-role blades I and a lot of other folks have been waiting for. The grips look wonderful and very comfortable. Blades are going to have good deep bellies and good grinds.

I've heard that they're going to be shipping in March if all goes well. I may need to preorder the bowie. Not too keen on the sheath for carry, so I'll have to get the lead out and learn how to make my own.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

New Beckers from Kabar at Shot Show 2012

Some pictures from Moose, a poster at BladeForums, show several new Becker knives coming out this year in a Shot Show Thread.

Becker Knife and Tool has been well known for their large size modern tactical carbon steel knives and also has had good success from their small sized 'Becker Neckers'. Three of these new blades are smaller versions of some of their larger models. A bowie, a drop point, and an Asian tanto. They're most likely around 4inches in blade length. Their handles are zytel and are using a new finish.

I'm really excited about these knives. They're the right size for serious working EDC or defensive use. They're most likely high carbon steel, so they're going to be very strong too. I can't wait to see the price, too.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Drugs & Anti-gunners

If you look around at the NRA Anti-gun organization, celebrity, and business page. You find the paragons of virtue that denounce guns as ultimate evil tools. However, if you just alone take the celebrity list and look into their records you find the worst sort of hypocrisy. Buyers and users of illegal drugs.

I am of a libertarian stint, I believe that drugs should be made legal. However, I totally and utterly oppose the purchase and use of them until the day they become legal. Criminal empires are fueled by those drugs. Tens of thousands of criminals and innocent civilians die each year thanks to the drug trade. They die in direct conflict between criminals, in robberies, in transport of drugs, and in the crossfire of these crimes. Behind each of those deaths is someone who bought those illegal drugs. That bloody money is what makes those murders profitable and also what pays for the arms used to commit them.

Anyone who claims to be anti-gun and has used illegal drugs has done more to support murder and death than your average pro-gunner. Most pro-gunners are rather drug free. After all, we have background checks to pass when we support rights.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Don't Think I'll Be Using GunsAmerica Again Any Time Soon...

One of GunsAmerica's boys, Paul Helinski, just stuck his foot in his mouth, badly. In the comments on an official Shot Show post about GunBloggers and Viral Media:
Now the question is when you are going to start qualifying internet media? We have to crawl over nobodies who can install wordpress and have nobody reading anything they write, It isn't so hard to qualify internet media using and Why do you waste the manufacturers' time and make the real internet media have to deal with wish I were internet journalists who are just using your stamp of approve to solicit review guns and accessories? You've created this giant gorilla in the room and we all have to deal with it, and you may think the industry takes your numbers seriously, but everyone sees things for what they are. If you are serious about bringing value to your exhibitors, you need to vet the press list.
It isn't about regular readership. Not everyone is a SaysUncle or JayG or GunBlast or the FirearmBlog. They don't have to be. Lemme explain the words:

Bloggers post about things they see. These posts end up on the Google search engine. People want to know more about things, so they search. Then they find these posts. These posts help them decide to purchase things or even just promote talking about them. Even little guys will get hits if they get something out that folks are searching for information on.

A lot of people shun professional gun rags, because do you ever see bad reviews? The blogger seems more personal and more like the reader. Readers want to read about the bad and the good. Your average blogger will do this. And if the industry throws the little guy some bones? He might just be a little nicer in his reporting.

However, Mr. "MyNameSoundsLiketheBradyCampaignsBigWig", just fucked himself and his company. Those same bloggers are now unhappy. They will not be so nice to GunsAmerica. They will tell others that, too. GunsAmerica might find their profits down as less people decide to shop there. You damn fool. We nobodies were on your side.

Update: Things are still gone over on this. It is on the verge of going into a flame war. Jeff Quinn of GunBlast has actually spoken up and is on the side of Paul. Paul also makes mention of how 'bloggers' have marginalized print magazines. Sorry, Mr. Quinn. I respect what you do, but I have to give my honest opinion.

GunBlast is an internet print mag in that you rarely find anything bad about he has up for review. Print mags have an economic reason to do this. They can't piss off their advertisers! Neither can Jeff piss of the sources of his review guns and equipment. He may be getting guns that are tinkered with by the manufacturers to make them perfect. I cannot say. But considering the lack of negative, I'll take his words with a grain of salt.

The one thing I truly love the most about Quinn and GunBlast is the shot show coverage every year. I get to see what is new and cool for the new year. It is almost like an information Christmas! Sure, he worked hard and for long years. However, when he got his foot in the door, the years weren't so long then. How would he have taken the same words back then?

h/t from SaysUncle So sorry I didn't get this in there sooner!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Model 1909 Argentine Artillery Hanger

One of the oldest pieces in my collection. This a 13inch bladed Artillery Hanger, a type of short sword, made in Weyersberg Germany out of Solingen steel back when it REALLY meant something. Bought for $30 from a pawn shop in my teenage years. I tried to have someone sharpen it, but he let a young relative scratch it up. I was foolish then, and didn't understand to leave it be. They go for $150 and up in better condition.

It has some rust that I need to take care of. Any suggestions?

WishList for Shot Show 2012!

Once again it is one of my favorite times of the year, Shot Show! The magical time when we get to see what the firearms, accessory, and knife industries think we need, want, or will buy. So what do I want to see this year?

A domestic semi-auto pistol carbine that is better than a kel-tec, but not as overpriced as a Beretta Storm Carbine. Should take available pistol magazines! At least one version in 9mm. Would be extra sweet if it was very short and around 5lbs or less.

Smith & Wesson Bodyguard semi-auto up-scaled and chambered for 9x19mm. Maybe my biggest want for this year. Because I'll most likely get one for my wife who needs a CCW piece.

Crimson Trace Lightguard for revolvers like the GP-100 or the S&W j-frames.

A good looking carbon steel bowie style knife over 9inches in size but under $100.

Smith & Wesson 6rd J-frame + revolver. Taurus has one that will fit in my 638 holster, but I like S&W better. GIMME.

Mossberg semi-auto shotgun done up like a 590a1 so it can take a bayonet and has all that lovely extra metal! That would rock so hard.

A surefire-like LED shotgun forearm light system. Surefire's are stupidly expensive. Fenix or Streamlight could do this with no problems and still be just as good as a surefire.

Modern pump action .357 or 44mag rifle.

Apex Tactical trigger kits for Sig-Sauer's like the 2022.

Subhilt defensive, fighting, and EDC knives!

I could come up with more, and I might still, but this is enough for now.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Cold Steel's 2012 New Product List

Cold Steel has finally produced its list of upcoming products for 2012. I am TOTALLY disappointed. Instead of the drop or spear point Mini-Tac that I have been lusting for, we have the tanto and the skinner types coming in serrated... Woopdy fucking doo.

There are 5 swords(no kindjal meh), an axe, 2 spears, a naval dirk, 2 sword machetes, an expensive Kukri in sk5 carbon steel, a few stainless fixed blades, and a several new lockbacks including a mini and micro size for the Recon I series. At least all three sizes will have a spearpoint version now.

I am feeling depressingly underwhelmed. I was really looking forward to Cold Steel's new product list this year. Well, at least Benchmade looks like they're going to have a great year for new goods.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Light a Candle Against Violence

My candle lantern is lit against violence and my first lines of defense against violence in home and abroad, respectively, remain vigilant in both light and darkness.

From left to right: Ruger GP-100 .357 magnum 3", Boker Trench Dagger 5.5", Cold Steel Mini-Tac Tanto 3.5", Smith & Wesson 639 Bodyguard .38 Special 1 & 7/8"

For more of this head over to Weerd Beard's master post.

Friday, January 6, 2012

Finally! Fenix Tk50 & BokerPlus Rambler!

Thirty minutes after returning from a successful trip to the much improved shooting range, the brown truck of joy graced me with a package from BladeHQ. Inside was the Fenix Tk50 and the Boker Plus Rambler.

The TK50 is a powerful 2 D-Cell LED light and the Rambler is small EDC fixed blade made from 440C.

I'll have to wait until tonight to get some beamshots of the Fenix. They should be most illuminating. Har har.

A Neat Upcoming Benchmade/Harley Davidson Fixed Blade

2012 is already shaping up to be a good year for knives. Several nice looking blades have shown up on BladeForums in a thread for new Benchmade knives. One is part of Benchmade's line of blades made for Harley Davidson. One fixed blade has really caught my eye, the Madcap.

This blade is a modest 4.66 inch long, an excellent defensive blade size. It is on the higher end size for what I like to be made out of 440C stainless, but still within acceptable limits. The shape looks to be a modified drop point recurve. Very similar to a SOG Spec Elite I or II. The grips are g10, which is my favorite grip material. It also has a deep choil which is much like the sub hilts I rant and gibber on about like a Cthulhu cultist with a blasphemous idol. The pommel terminates at an near point that would enable breaking both auto glass and faces with equal aplomb.

This is a sexy blade that is going to be retailing for about $88.95 according to BladeHQ. I am always looking for knives of this size. A little bigger than the normal 3-4 inch range of small defensive knives, but under $100. Since it is 440c, I wish it were about 15 bucks cheaper at least. If the sheath is decent, it might be worth checking out. Oh hell, who am I kidding? I'm going to check it out anyway.

On another note, the package mentioned a week ago is finally out for delivery this morning. About time! Also, I'll be headed to the range this morning to test out my Sig 245 and also to get some much needed trigger time in with my primary carry, the S&W 638 j-frame.

Update: Its not Madcap as BladeHQ's site says, instead it is Mad Cat.

Update2: Benchmade lists it as Madcap. *sigh*

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Teenage Self-Defense in Florida

Daniels in the Gunblogger Conspiracy IRC channel, posted this link about the criminal charges brought against a teenager who used a pocket knife lethally in self-defense against another teen in Florida.

The short version is that one fourteen year old boy, who had a pocket knife, attempted to avoid a fight with another older boy by getting off the bus several stops before where the fight was supposed to take place. Unfortunately, the aggressor exited the bus with some friends at his back and assaulted the victim cravenly from behind and continued the attack. This caused the victim to draw a pocket knife and begin to fight back. Out of twelve knife strikes, two managed to be lethal for the still attacking older teen. The local authorities charged the fourteen year old with second degree murder and went to court. However, under Florida's "Stand your ground law", a judge threw out the charges.

The judge made it clear that the boy had attempted to avoid the fight, while armed, and was under assault from the first hit to the fatal blow with his blade in a place he had every single right to be in. He had reason to believe that his life was in danger and he acted in a legal fashion.

Of course plenty of people are calling the victim a murderer. People have some sort of weird idea that it was the boy's duty to accept his 'beat down'. That he was a girl to avoid the attack. Those people are so very wrong.

The boy acted exactly how a CCWer should act. He was armed for his own protection, and took steps to avoid conflict knowing that. That failed. He was chased down and assaulted, sucker punched from the onset.

The attacker also had friends with him. When things go south for the attacker, friends often step in. Then it would have degraded into a gang beating. To me that's a big motivator to fight back with everything. I've been in situations similar. Being at the total mercy of teenagers is nothing anyone wants.

Lastly, in the end the victim fought back with an utterly inadequate weapon. Then he only made two lethal hits out of twelve. His blade will have been in the range of 2.5 to 3.5 inches. Almost impossible to deliver an instant fight stopping hit. When knives come out there are often far more hits than that.

People just don't understand the world of a youth. It is not so much sunshine and smiles. Horrible things happen and never get reported. There is a weird code of honor and a lot of fear to back it up. Children are extorted, tortured, sexually assaulted, and robbed. Crimes that merit violent and lethal self-defense among adults are laughed off as kids being kids. Teenagers are not totally children, but not totally adults. They often have the physical power of adults, but not the brains in their skulls to keep them from misusing it.

One kid is dead, he might have made something of his life, I'd rather he have gotten some good wounds and learned. Yet, he reaped what he sowed. When cornered people fight. That kid that fought back will have to live with his actions. He is one of us. One of the CCWers out there. He's no murderer, but he's a killer. Any one of us could be him one day.