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Need EDC help from those more knowledgeable

Discussion in 'Busse Combat Knives' started by mayfly-1970, Aug 26, 2019.

  1. mayfly-1970

    mayfly-1970 Gold Member Gold Member

    54
    Apr 26, 2005
    I have spent a couple weeks reading many different forums and opinions. I can make some assumptions based off the info, but wanted to ask my question directly to a group I trust and have learned from in the past.

    I am trying to make a decision on whether to keep a recently acquired Infi Whiskey Warden. My goal in purchasing it was to have a superior EDC that I could take everywhere and perform basic urban tasks and also accompany me on camping outings. I want it to perform slicing, food prep, gut a fish, cut a line, open a box- nothing too aggressive (I have an Infidu for the heavy lifting and it is my only knife in Infi with convex blade, so completely different purpose- I have also owned plenty of kin in other steels)- my concern is that with the Infi steel on the W. Warden I am giving up edge retention for toughness- while edge retention is my main priority. Should I look into something else? I am liking what I read about M390 holding an edge and tempted by a Bradford 3.5, or a Big Chris knife in a "super steel". Is the loss in edge retention with Infi enough to consider going another route?

    I realize I am asking this on a Busse forum, but you guys know Infi better than anywhere else and I have never used Infi on a small blade (my 2 Howling Rats, and Mean Street have done well but have gone to my 3 college kids)- I also love each of the Busse kin knives that I have collected over the past 10 years. However, if possible, I would like honest feedback of options I should consider for a "stay sharp" EDC, without showing disrespect to Jerry and the gang for asking.
     
  2. WatermanChris

    WatermanChris Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Aug 30, 2018
    The coolest thing about INFI is it's malleability. It typically doesn't break or chip. So, while this might not stay as sharp as long as some "super steels", it is extremely easy to bring back to hair-shaving sharpness with any piece of steel including a vehicle bumper if that's all you have. No need to even carry a stone. That's why I prefer INFI. I also like to be able to pry, baton, hammer, etc without having to worry about breaking it and knowing that if I do manage to break it, the manufacturer has my back.

    I know you have your INFIdu for the heavy lifting but sometimes a smaller blade works better depending on logistics.
     
    inkynate likes this.
  3. Bigfattyt

    Bigfattyt Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 23, 2007
    I have EDC'd a few smaller Busse. A Game Warden, mini Sus Scrofa. And two Bony Active Duties. The bony Active Duties were thin, and harder. They made the best EDC's, and held an edge a little longer.

    I never had an issue with edge retention causing me any grief. But I always knew they could handle any tasks needed.

    I have a pair of fixed blade EDC customs in CPM3V

    I can tell you which steel is much easier to sharpen and reprofile. INFI.

    INFI gives up points on edge retention for abrasive cutting tasks, but is also tough, and hard to damage.

    There are high wesr resistance steels that are nonwhere near as tough, but will cut exponentially longer in cardboard, or rope, etc.


    Just realistically assess how much abrasive curing you do in a day vs likely hood you will have to do something "hard use" or "abusive" with your knife. ..

    Ad in that INFI is basically rust proof (in my uses, including multi day canoe trips, swimming with INFI, and one pool rescue of a little toddler, in full clothing, where I did not dry the knife off and wore it in the set sheath the rest of the day).

    For me, it does not really matter to much.

    I buy and use customs in other steels too. CPM3v, L6, AEBL, and others.

    If you like the GW, carry and use it. If you want to try a custom, sell the GW and buy one.

    Heck, I even EDC traditionals in 1095, and other steels that have less edge retention than INFI.... I'm still happy with them.
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2019
    PeteyTwoPointOne likes this.
  4. David Brown

    David Brown Kydex Sheath and Holster Artist :) Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jun 4, 2001
    Any of the Elmax offering will serve you very well.
    Max Warden
    Max Duty
    Lil Smokie
    Steak knives

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    Apocalyps, tom jones and Bigfattyt like this.
  5. JohnTheTexican

    JohnTheTexican Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 1, 2006
    Much as I love Busse knives, I don't have one that I'd consider suitable for EDC. For that, I want a folder. I tried a lot of different folders from a lot of different manufacturers -- Chris Reeve, Emerson, Spyderco, Strider, ZT, etc. -- but settled on a Benchmade Nakamura 484 (M390), which for me was the best combination of ergonomics, edge retention, and general performance for EDC-type tasks. It's slicey, stays sharp, feels good in my hand, opens smoothly, and is easy to carry. Not nearly as easy to sharpen as INFI, though.

    Unfortunately, I lost it a week or so ago, but I now have a 484-1 (CPM-S90V) on the way, which is supposed to have somewhat better edge retention (albeit at the cost of some ease of sharpening and toughness), but I haven't tried it yet. I'm currently carrying a Benchmade North Fork (CPM-S30V) which is also nice, but not in the same league as the Nakamura. IMO.

    All that said, I'm just going by my own experience with an EDC for basic urban tasks. I'm not much of an outdoorsman and I don't have any metallurgical expertise or anything like that.
     
  6. Warbow150

    Warbow150

    283
    Dec 23, 2013
    From Busse, the AMS is an awesome EDC. Perhaps not the best for the fish gutting you mentioned, but it'll do the job. Smallish, handy, tough, holds an edge more than well enough. To me the choice of steel is far less important than the overall shape and geometry of the blade.

    For general EDC and slicing I like spyderco mules, they cut like lasers. I have one in CPM20CV and it's near perfect. The LT Wright Small Northern Hunter is in AEB-L and it's another great little EDC for a very reasonable price. Good for all the things you mentioned. Carothers EDCs are top notch if you want something a little more suited to a job site which is tough and holds an edge well. They're a little thicker, more like an AMS.

    Regarding edge retention, INFI is fine. It's not as good as the M390/S110V/M4 ilk, but you don't really need to to be. Just sharpen it a bit more. If you're happy with your Warden just stick with it. It's a good knife.
     
    sixplymaple and inkynate like this.
  7. inkynate

    inkynate Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 4, 2010
    Only speaking for myself, but I got to the point a few years ago where all the discussion around edge retention, wear resistance, carbides, and "super steels" became flat out nauseating.

    Experience tells me that "geometry cuts, geometry cuts, geometry cuts" and that I prefer steels that take a hair popping edge with the least amount of effort possible. Busse's factory edge geometries are generally optimized for abuse over slicing, but they can be reprofiled or reground to whatever you want.

    Btw, I just picked up a Spyderco Bow River, which may be a fantastic option for the uses described. Except that it's a budget model in boring old 8Cr13MoV.
     
  8. mayfly-1970

    mayfly-1970 Gold Member Gold Member

    54
    Apr 26, 2005
    Thanks for the replies- your feedback really helps.
     
  9. nydude

    nydude Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 10, 2009
    I've started using the Park Ranger a lot. The ergos are awesome. As for edge retention the things that really hit it for me are cardboard and if I cut through something onto a plate. Other than that I rarely touch it up and if I do, I use a "Block" sharpener which doesn't take really any metal off.

    As for alternative EDC's, can't speak for all "super steels" haven't tried enough, but have had very good luck with an Esee Izula, and a little VG10 Spiderco, both great knives, really, but wouldn't grab either over anything in INFI.
     
  10. Blueoak

    Blueoak

    202
    May 12, 2015
    I have been around knives for a long time. I feel a lot of this super steel stuff is marketing. I have tried a lot of different steels over the years. Are the differences real? Yes. Will it make much of a difference for a guy who is opening a few boxes and cutting an occasional steak. No.

    I see people bragging about this new knife they bought with this super steel and how great it is and how it is the best steel they ever used. I see the same guy selling the knife new in the box six months later.
     
  11. PeteyTwoPointOne

    PeteyTwoPointOne Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Jun 10, 2014
    I've had excellent luck with ScrapMax 460, it's geometry is for slicing and the Elmax is a breeze to touch up on SharpMaker.

    It's my go-to cardboard processor.

    Jerry seems to have nailed the HT on it...good stuff!

    So I'd say go for a ScrapMax model when it pops up on the Exchange, they usually go for a song...I paid $120 for my 460 and I snagged a 340 even cheaper!

    they come in 340 = 3.4" blade, 360 = 3.6", and 460 you get the idea :rolleyes:
     
  12. JohnTheTexican

    JohnTheTexican Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 1, 2006
    It's not technically a box. I think it's called a "tactical cardboard sheath." HTH.
     
    blackhat and WatermanChris like this.
  13. Currawong

    Currawong Gold Member Gold Member

    May 19, 2012
    Bussekin in elmax is the way to go :thumbsup:
     
  14. David Brown

    David Brown Kydex Sheath and Holster Artist :) Moderator Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jun 4, 2001
    well I don't know about all this "Super Steel" stuff.
    What I do know is these elmax steak knives are some of the toughest and edge holdingest knives I have used.

    Real world use by me, not reading what the internet has said

    Drilled through a 2X4 by popping and drilling the wood out with a thin bladed knife like this un-heard of.
    Cut through tons of leather
    whittled countless fuzz sticks
    Started fires after shaving fatwood
    cut lots of steaks and other meats

    [​IMG]

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    tom jones, duramax, Béma and 4 others like this.
  15. zanussi01

    zanussi01

    240
    Jan 3, 2012
    I have an AMS which is an awesome little knife,convex grind and INFI,whats not to like!
    However I do find it a little short for some things,so now I have a Boss Jack,much better size as
    and all rounder.
    Similar size to my much loved ol' SRK,and my venerable ol' 5-6.:thumbsup:
    [​IMG]
     
    duramax likes this.
  16. Busto

    Busto KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Jul 26, 2011
    For EDC purpose INFI checks all the boxes for a carbon steel blade material. INFI is easy to sharpen takes a keen edge and has superior stain resistance for a carbon blade. M390 is STAINLESS so yes it has an assumed higher level of stain resistance, but that comes at a elevated price and loss of ease of sharpening. It's been my experience that all higher Alloy stainless with Tungsten and Vanadium are a pain to sharpen, and I prefer not to spend more time than necessary to touch up an edge. One good suggestion is ELMAX all the attributes of M390 without Tungsten or Vanadium (I personally love this Stainless) Holds a terrific hair popping sharp edge and No overinflated "Super Steel" price tag!
     
  17. hhmoore

    hhmoore Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 7, 2014
    My thought is that it sounds like you want your smaller knife to excel at knifey, slicey tasks...and I'd probably look elsewhere for that. I've got small fixed blades that are 0.18" thick; and I rarely use them, these days... unless I'm planning on doing something that suggests the extra beef will be beneficial. At that size, I lean more toward thinner blades (0.08-0.12"), as they're better at the jobs I want them to do.
    Of course, I'm not opposed to carrying/ bringing other knives; so one knife doesn't have to do it all.
     
  18. mayfly-1970

    mayfly-1970 Gold Member Gold Member

    54
    Apr 26, 2005
    Again, I appreciate the real-world feedback from you guys. Based on it, I just purchased a Scrapmax 460, which appears to be an outstanding slicer and could handle all my food prep, and camp chores while being able to trust that it will be sharp and ready when needed. I ended up adding a knife to the collection instead of switching out, but that is how it goes in Busse-land.
     
  19. clampdaddy

    clampdaddy Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 31, 2013
    The Scrapmax line is awesome. You will be happy with it. I had a 375 and the blade was everything I could ask for. For me, the handle was a bit big for the blade size but on the 460 it should be about perfect.

    One thing I will mention is to not look past SR101. While it isn't stain resistant like INFI, in my personal experience it will hold a hair popping edge markedly better than INFI during routine every day use. Anymore, when I grab a blade to do regular EDC/hunting type knife stuff, 9 times out of 10 the Rodent trail is what ends up on my belt.
     
    PeteyTwoPointOne likes this.
  20. JACKMANDU

    JACKMANDU Gold Member Gold Member

    693
    Feb 10, 2019
    I use my scrapmax 460 in the kitchen all the time. It is an amazing slicer. I also bring it on all camping trips to handle the food prep. The handle is perfect size, and very comfortable. Nice choice!
     
  21. JACKMANDU

    JACKMANDU Gold Member Gold Member

    693
    Feb 10, 2019
    I thought this thread needed some scrapmax pics 8EA7C25C-0660-42AF-96A2-28D4B9F2B29E.jpeg A793DDDF-85D6-4C18-B377-8D8C2E3AB0DE.jpeg 9224D1B8-27EB-400B-A409-0C90A8E7092F.jpeg 6D7EB47C-D732-4A03-AE35-EC6DA2935ADA.jpeg
     
    mayfly-1970, Busto and Currawong like this.

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