Adamas issues - UPDATE back from Benchmade

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Jan 21, 2015
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I just bought a new full size Adamas in Cruwear.

The action has a gritty feel and both of the washers rotate with the blade.

Have there been other reports of the washers rotating in the Adamas? What's the fix? I'll take the knife apart and clean it up to see if the grittiness will go away. It's certainly not smooth out of the box.
 
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Try adjusting the pivot and see if that fixes the issue. If not, I would take apart the knife and clean it.
 
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Jan 21, 2015
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Try adjusting the pivot and see if that fixes the issue. If not, I would take apart the knife and clean it.

I found some cerakote on the both sides of the blade where the washers sit. I removed it, and it feels a little smoother, but still not very good. I can't eliminate side to side blade play without locking the blade. There's not much pressure from the omega spring either. There's hardly any detent keeping the knife closed. The axis lock on my Freek snaps into place with much more authority and has a very strong detent compared to the Adamas.
 
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Yes the finish is the same as the mini under the washers. Mine had some cerakote gunked up under the washers. I removed it and it's smoother now.

Still has up/down and side to side play.
 
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Let it break in a little bit. Washers rotate with the blade. It's normal. Some of the smoothest Benchmades I have are ones that came a little gritty from the factory, but I let them break in and they get super smooth.
 
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Let it break in a little bit. Washers rotate with the blade. It's normal. Some of the smoothest Benchmades I have are ones that came a little gritty from the factory, but I let them break in and they get super smooth.

I wouldn't mind doing that, but I think the main problem now is the weak omega spring. The knife is set up a little tight to try and eliminate some of the blade play, but there is almost no tension keeping the knife closed anymore.

I called BM and they will not ship a new spring, so I need to either send it in or buy one from Etsy.
 

DMG

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I
I wouldn't mind doing that, but I think the main problem now is the weak omega spring. The knife is set up a little tight to try and eliminate some of the blade play, but there is almost no tension keeping the knife closed anymore.

I called BM and they will not ship a new spring, so I need to either send it in or buy one from Etsy.

it Isn’t a weak spring. The knife needs to be broken in.
 
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The most common reason a new Benchmade has blade play and poor action is that the washers have burrs or are not flat or both. They use punched instead of machined washers to save a few cents. If you are handy enough to disassemble and reassemble a knife, you can often improve matters by polishing them on a flat sharpening stone. Don't thin them too much or you'll create a different problem.
Another reason for play/poor action is varying coating thickness on blade or liners. This can be fixed by polishing.
All new Benchmades need to be taken apart and checked and tuned. For example, on many the springs rub on the inside of the handles. If so, the springs will eventually break. Conversely, if no rub then springs last forever. You fix this with a little Dremel action. There's other stuff to look out for, that's enough for now.
 
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it Isn’t a weak spring. The knife needs to be broken in.

You've experienced this before and breaking in the knife made the spring pressure stronger? I can feel how much weaker the spring is than the one in my Freek just by moving the axis lock. I've only had 4 BMs and this is the first time I've felt an omega spring that was this weak.
 

DMG

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You've experienced this before and breaking in the knife made the spring pressure stronger? I can feel how much weaker the spring is than the one in my Freek just by moving the axis lock. I've only had 4 BMs and this is the first time I've felt an omega spring that was this weak.

i suspect something is binding and that resistance is using up some of the spring in the omega spring.
 
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Apr 13, 2021
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You've experienced this before and breaking in the knife made the spring pressure stronger? I can feel how much weaker the spring is than the one in my Freek just by moving the axis lock. I've only had 4 BMs and this is the first time I've felt an omega spring that was this weak.
My bet is that one Omega spring broke and you're only feeling the remaining spring's pressure on the axis lock. I bought two sets of springs from the Etsy seller (EDCaccord) after my first Benchmade, a mini bugout, broke a spring within a week of my purchase. I returned that, and now have a full-size Bugout with the aftermarket springs installed (with a color-swapped axis bar from the same seller), and I'm very happy with it.

Like you, I see no sense in the decreased Axis bar pressure from the Omega springs that could be related to break-in, just breaking.
 
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Use it and let the parts seat. There is no reason to polish, clean, etc a new knife. If you want a smooth opener, do not lube the washers. Let them wear in, and get a bit scratched-up (completely smooth washers hinder the action). My Mini-Adamas' washers both spin against the liners, not the blade. Knife is extremely smooth without fancy "snake" oil nano particles, polishing, etc.
 
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My bet is that one Omega spring broke and you're only feeling the remaining spring's pressure on the axis lock. I bought two sets of springs from the Etsy seller (EDCaccord) after my first Benchmade, a mini bugout, broke a spring within a week of my purchase. I returned that, and now have a full-size Bugout with the aftermarket springs installed (with a color-swapped axis bar from the same seller), and I'm very happy with it.

Like you, I see no sense in the decreased Axis bar pressure from the Omega springs that could be related to break-in, just breaking.

I took the knife apart and lubricated everything. The omega springs were intact. I adjusted the body screws and the action feels better now, but I still have vertical /horizontal blade play.

I sent the knife to Benchmade so they could fix it, or at least give me stronger omega springs. It was delivered to BM today, I'll update this post when I get my knife back.
 

Judge Luco

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My mini had vertical play. Not sure what BM did but it came back perfect. Smooth as butter and no play.
 
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There is another reason a Benchmade can have a gritty action. This happened on 2 of about 30 BMs I've had. If the axis bar is soft, you get galling between the axis bar and the tang. That means material transfers between the two surfaces. You feel roughness, and you can see the roughness with a loupe. When this happens, no amount of wear or lubrication will stop it. I knew it was the axis bar and not the tang that was soft because I could see flat spots on the axis bar. When this happens, you either live with it or replace the axis bar.
The situation is like a trigger sear. These are made very hard to wear smooth under high pressure. I wouldn't have thought an axis bar would do this if I hadn't seen it myself, since the contact pressure doesn't seem that high.
I suspect the axis bars are hardened ordinarily, occasionally a soft one must slip through. Most users might not even notice it. The gritty feel ruins my enjoyment, though.
 
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Jan 21, 2015
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Update

I got the knife back last night. Some changes:

1) Axis lock bar looks like it was polished somewhat.
2) Omega springs feel very slightly stiffer.
3) Blade now drops shut.
4) Action feels smoother, it looks like they polished the side of the liners where the Axis lock bar was making a lot of contact.
5) They replaced the pocket clip with one that has more tension.
6) Knife was re lubricated
7) The washers look newer, and it looks like they re applied that copper colored rust resistant coating to the blade pivot area.

Blade play:
Knife came back with vertical and horizontal blade play. But the action felt good. I removed the blade from the handle and cleaned out all the powdered metal and re lubricated it. I've got it tightened down now to where the action still feels good, and there is very little blade play. I think I've got the horizontal play adjusted out of it, now there is only vertical play which is typical for BMs in my experience.

Overall I'm happy now. I'll probably try to Etsy springs in the future, but for now I'll enjoy my knife.

The thickness behind the edge is about 22 thou, it's about the same as my BM Freek in M4. The Cru Wear sharpens to a very nice edge.

On a side note, the blade comes out of tension easily if you adjust it and don't apply loc tite afterwards. It's not a huge deal, but if you spent some time getting the perfect tension on the pivot screw, you might be annoyed when it loses some tension and you have to start over.
 
Last edited:
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Jan 21, 2015
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I tried the Etsy springs and they were actually weaker than the new springs BM gave me. The Etsy springs were a little longer and thinner than the BM ones. Etsy springs were 23 thou thick and BM were 26 thou thick.
 
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May 13, 2019
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Sorry to hear about your troubles with your Adamas. I'm glad benchmade took care of it. I just unboxed my new LG Adamas Fri night and must say that my knife I received was absolutely perfect fit and finish wise. No blade play whatsoever, locks up tighter than a drum. Honestly this knife feels more robust and rugged than my Hinderer xm18 time will tell.
 

kingston73

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Oct 14, 2013
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There is another reason a Benchmade can have a gritty action. This happened on 2 of about 30 BMs I've had. If the axis bar is soft, you get galling between the axis bar and the tang. That means material transfers between the two surfaces. You feel roughness, and you can see the roughness with a loupe. When this happens, no amount of wear or lubrication will stop it. I knew it was the axis bar and not the tang that was soft because I could see flat spots on the axis bar. When this happens, you either live with it or replace the axis bar.
The situation is like a trigger sear. These are made very hard to wear smooth under high pressure. I wouldn't have thought an axis bar would do this if I hadn't seen it myself, since the contact pressure doesn't seem that high.
I suspect the axis bars are hardened ordinarily, occasionally a soft one must slip through. Most users might not even notice it. The gritty feel ruins my enjoyment, though.

I had this happen with a bugout, on mine I could see the lock bar rotating. I understand people saying “break it in” but sometimes there’s nothing to do other than send it back.
 
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