Hard Use Fixed Blade

Joined
Feb 4, 2007
Messages
129
I've been going bonkers trying to find the perfect (to me) hard use fixed blade knife. I have a BK2 but like my GK&CO 11" kukri it fatigues my hand too much for constant all day use in the woods. I got a Mora Garberg and while I really like that a lot I want something a little heavier.

For the time being my go-to is an Ontario RAT 5 and it ticks off nearly every one of my desires in this kind of knife:

-5 to 6" blade
-full tang
-1095 powder coated steel
-micarta handles
-full flat grind
-extended pommel (I prefer it to be flat like the BK2 instead of pointed like the RAT 5 but either way is acceptable)
-3/16 to .200" blade thickness maximum
-lanyard hole
-drop point style blade

The only thing that I just can't stand about the RAT 5 is the enormous finger choil cut into the blade. I get that some people like that, I am in the OPPOSITE camp from those people. I don't want to start any arguments about it with anyone but it bothers me to the point that despite everything else being just about perfect I'm wanting to replace it if I can find something better. The handle shape of the RAT 5 sure isn't perfect for me, but I could deal with it if it wasn't for that giant chunk missing out of the blade.

If anyone can think of a knife that fits my criteria please let me know and I'll be happy to check it out. I'm wanting to keep it under $150 and I don't care about sheaths since I have a Spec Ops Combat Master short for it now.

Thanks knife people! Hope you are all having a Happy St. Patty's Day!
 
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Joined
Sep 14, 2004
Messages
607
The Buck 891 Ground Combat Knife in tan micarta meets most of your listed specs. It's carbon steel but 5160 cerakote instead of 1095 powder coated, and sabre ground instead of FFG, all other specs match what you listed.
 
Joined
Mar 5, 2021
Messages
51
Can't remember all the specs, but just off the top of my head it sounds like the Architect series from The Knife Connection is what you're looking for.
 
Joined
Feb 4, 2007
Messages
129
That's awesome, I never heard of The Knife Connection before. Their Field Buddy 5.5 was almost exactly what I want except for a high Saber grind instead of a full flat grind. I would have preferred full flat grind, but it looks like their high Saber grind is pretty close to that and maybe I'll like it even better for splitting kindling.

I went ahead and ordered one with green and black 2x2 G10 handles. That's a bonus that their blade blanks are made and hardened by Tops Knives too! I've been wanting one of their blades for awhile now.

Thanks brother!
 

Blue Sky

Gold Member
Joined
Jun 16, 2002
Messages
2,949
That's awesome, I never heard of The Knife Connection before. Their Field Buddy 5.5 was almost exactly what I want except for a high Saber grind instead of a full flat grind. I would have preferred full flat grind, but it looks like their high Saber grind is pretty close to that and maybe I'll like it even better for splitting kindling.

I went ahead and ordered one with green and black 2x2 G10 handles. That's a bonus that their blade blanks are made and hardened by Tops Knives too! I've been wanting one of their blades for awhile now.

Thanks brother!

Wow, fastest decision ever lol! Hope you like it. I was going to suggest the Buck GCK also, I like that one myself.
 

Sonnydaze

Gold Member
Joined
Jul 6, 2009
Messages
11,276
I would suggest two possible manufacturers:
Busse fixed blades....they have their own forum here in BF. Outstanding product. I've had five or six...NOT cheap.
SurviveKnives....available on the Exchange often... their knives and steels are great; their delivery on
new purchases has been terrible. Reasonably priced...usually low $200's.
I've had maybe seven models in various lengths from 2.8" to 4.5".
Steels 20CV and 3V... On the Exchange, many of these are "as new" and highly reco'd. They are also
offered in "seconds" which are cheaper and usually one cannot find the visual defect or whatever.
 
Joined
Feb 4, 2007
Messages
129
Wow, I wasn't aware of the ESEE 6hm, but that sure does look nice. I might end up getting one of those down the line, I really like the look of it and that black leather sheath with ESEE stamped in the leather looks sharp.

I'm excited for the Architect Field Buddy 5.5, I really like just about everything about it. I would have preferred a black blade with a FFG but the clear ceracoat should be interesting and maybe I'll end up loving the high Saber grind. I don't think I've had anything with that kind of grind before, maybe it will be the best of both worlds. And if not...well, that ESEE 6hm is now gnawing away at the back of my mind!

I've always liked Busse Combat Knives, but I could never find a place where I could shop through all their models and pick one I liked. It always seemed like they only had a limited number of models available at any given time and they would be out of stock on the ones I may have liked. I lived across the street from an older kid when growing up and he always had sweet blades. I caught up with him 5 years or so ago and found out that he collects Busse Combat knives and makes his own custom micarta scales for them. I was always interested in their INFI steel, I don't think the composition of that is much of a mystery anymore and I always heard guys rave about how great it is. Maybe someday I'll own a Busse Combat. I always liked the Swamp Rat knives too.

I've never heard of Survive Knives but I'll be sure to look them up. Thanks for the good tips!
 
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d762nato

Gold Member
Joined
Dec 16, 2009
Messages
8,059
Maybe find a custom maker here and have one made from Z-Tuff, S7 or 3V. There are some good makers here on BladeForums with reasonable prices.
 

Mossyhorn

Enlightened Rogue
Gold Member
Joined
Dec 6, 2009
Messages
33,365
A1 X-1-reduced.png Falkniven A1x. I'm having one reground to a full flat grind to allow better cutting capability. I also have one that is original with the factory convex edge. This knife is a beast.
 
Joined
Mar 5, 2021
Messages
51
Sweet! I think you'll really dig the Field Buddy 5.5. l love full flat grinds too, but this sabre grind is pretty high and the blade stock is a tad thinner so it shouldn't feel as awkward going through stuff like some sabres do. Maybe consider posting a review once you get some time with it!
 
Joined
Feb 4, 2007
Messages
129
I'm really excited to get it, hopefully the lead time won't be too long since they only need to attach the handles to the blade and send it out.

I am going to be building a small campsite in the woods for my 10 year old daughter so we have a place where I can teach her some good woodsmanship skills like firebuilding, shelter construction, spoon carving, trap making, feather sticking, fire lays, cooking, etc. I can take some pictures of stuff I do with the FB5.5 and review how it works compared to other similar knives I own and have used.

My daughter also raises Silver Fox meat rabbits and has 5 or 6 little ones right now that should be ready to process in 8 weeks or so. I normally use my Bear and Son Upswept Skinner for bunny processing chores but I can put this FB5.5 through the paces and see how it does for dressing small game. Maybe even use it to flesh out some hides for tanning too (I normally use an Alaskan ulu along with the Bear and Son Skinner for that). I got a spring turkey hunt next month so if I breast out a bird I can use the FB5.5 for that.

We're taking a weekend trip up north to attend a morel mushroom festival in May so the FB5.5 can come along on that trip too. I might even see how the FB5.5 does at whacking up Blue Gills if I manage to get out fishing this spring, although that is usually another task I enjoy using the Bear and Son Upswept Skinner or one of my Schrade Sharpfingers for.

Thanks for all the tips. I looked at some of those SurviveKnives but nothing grabbed my interest. I guess after seeing that hall of shame post I'm glad I didn't fall in love with any of their offerings. I've always eyed the Fallkniven products but they're a bit pricey and I certainly don't want to have to incur the additional costs and time spent waiting to have a production knife reground when there are so many other options that cost less and fit my needs out-of-the-box. I'm not knocking Fallkniven, I've never read any complaints about them. For that money though I'd probably opt to add another Bark River to my collection.
 
Joined
Oct 23, 2010
Messages
1,109
5 or 5-1/2" is just not a blade length I have gravitated to. After 40 years, I have no 5-ish" blades, sold or traded them all. My EDC preference is 4 to 4-1/2". I have light and thin as well as thick and heavy, so covered for most daily type tasks. after that, 6+" blades get the nod.

Glad you found one you like without too much drama. Seems to be an awful lot of people waiting for someone else to make up their minds for them. In my opinion.
 
Joined
Feb 4, 2007
Messages
129
I like my 6+" blades too. Kukris, machetes, Kabars, bowies, I use some and the others I just collect as they are mostly just fighting-style blades. I also very much like the 4 - 4.5" range as well. I have a bunch of Mora Companions and Heavy Duty editions, a Kansbol and now a Garberg. I'm really liking the Garberg. I'm waiting for a custom kydex neck sheath to arrive that I ordered for it. It's a great blade and will most likely be what I carry when I go backpacking or want to travel light. I like the versatility of the 5" blade because the right weight and geometry blade coupled with a good lanyard does a pretty fair amount of chopping to trim branches and stubs off of poles for rough construction and little jobs like that. And when you add batoning then it becomes even more valuable. I usually don't baton anything a 5" blade can't handle and the 5" models are small enough to carry comfortably on my belt or in my pack when not in use. If I need to do any heavy chopping I'm using my GK&CO Kukri, Estwing hatchet, Ontario Backwoods Machete or Council Tools Boy's Axe depending on the nature of the job at hand. I could probably step up to a 6" blade and not feel too encumbered but I think this Architect Field Buddy 5.5 that I have coming is going to be a real sweet-spot of a blade for my needs!
 
Joined
Feb 4, 2007
Messages
129
I received my Architect Field Buddy 5.5 today. Really fast delivery, I was so happy to get it. So far I haven't used it for much, but it is everything I hoped it would be. It feels so good in hand, fit and finish of blade and grips is outstanding, the stonewashed/clear cerakote finish looks awesome and the balance and weight and blade geometry and everything is just perfect. I can't wait to get out in the woods with this one tomorrow and see how it performs. I'm still looking at the ESEE 6hm, but I can't imagine liking it more than this FB5.5. I'll try to put together a good review to post in another thread later.

Thanks so much for this recommendation, I'm so glad I posted here at bladeforums.com. I knew there was something special out there I was overlooking!
 

deltablade

Gold Member
Joined
Jul 29, 2006
Messages
1,687
I highly recommend this Jakkit knife. The blade is a touch shorter than your criteria, yet for me the length is perfect for an allaround using knife. the specs are as follows:
Specifications
Blade material 99Cr18MoV

Blade hardness HRC 59

Handle TPE Dryflex

Sheath Kydex

Weight: 7.231 oz

Overall length: 9.21″

Blade length: 4.33″

Blade thickness: 0.2″

This knife is a delight to use and hold. The flat ground blade comes razor sharp out of the box. The handle is contoured very well for comfort in use. It is my favorite knife for general purpose use. It feels much more refined and better in hand that my Cold Steel srk or master hunter or Rat 5. It is also available with VG-10 steel.
16979_JKTKNV2-01.jpg
 
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