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TOPS knives, How good are they?

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by Space_Monkey, Mar 7, 2010.

  1. Space_Monkey


    Dec 13, 2009
    I've been looking for some time now into getting a fixed blade survival type knife. I've looked through the whole RAT RC line and I will certainly be purchasing one, likely an RC-4 or RC-6, or both ;) . BUT I was surfing through the net and found this. http://newgraham.com/store/product/6183/Moccasin-Ranger-Black-PE/ I really like the way it looks, and to be honest it seems alot like RAT knives. I know that TOPS knives were manufactured by ROWEN previously, the same as RAT is now, but it is my understanding that they split ways recently. Are they quality knives? Anybody have any experience? Thanks for any help!!1
  2. Thalestin


    Jul 20, 2006
    I think they are quality, but I find they tend to be gimmicky and often very odd and useless designs IMO. YMMV
  3. Space_Monkey


    Dec 13, 2009
    mmmm, I think I'll just stick to what I know is good ;) better to spend the money on a RAT :D
  4. VR4


    Jan 29, 2010
    Jeff Randall spent a while in the Amazon with a couple TOPS knives and if I'm not mistaken, only had good things to say about them. I also remember reading somewhere that he has a TOPS knife in his BOB.

    TOPS has some wild designs and they may be a little pricey for some, but I don't think anyone questions that they make good solid blades.
    KELAMA likes this.
  5. jakeyjake4528


    Jul 31, 2006
    VR4 said it perfectly.

    Some of their designs are indeed far out there, but so what? I own a few TOPS, one a grim ripper. Silly name, but its a quality piece, and certainly would fulfill its purpose.
    Lapedog likes this.
  6. James0723


    Mar 25, 2009
    I don't like how the sheaths say "TOPS" in big letters on the plastic buckle.
  7. mar12duk


    Mar 1, 2009
    I have a TOPS Tom Brown Tracker, after re-profiling the blade, and getting a better sheath, i'm happy with it
  8. bearcut


    Sep 3, 2006
    TOPS knives are very good knives.
    RAT knives are very good knives.

    Get the design you want and forget about who makes it.
    KELAMA likes this.
  9. FortyTwoBlades

    FortyTwoBlades Baryonyx walkeri Dealer / Materials Provider

    Mar 8, 2008
    If you sift through the TOPS models you can find some quite nice ones. The Shango for instance, is a fantastic little necker. :)
    Lapedog likes this.
  10. Anthony kisner

    Anthony kisner

    Oct 19, 2017
    Tops tahoma field knife, and the Tops el chete are my main camping blades
    ScooterG likes this.
  11. Anthony kisner

    Anthony kisner

    Oct 19, 2017
    I prefer my Tops over my busse. 1095 steel holds a good edge, and easy to sharpen. Also Tops does a killer heat treat
  12. fielder


    Jan 25, 2011
    I love my Tops Desert Nomad. A well thought out design with a great sheath.
  13. chambelona59


    May 4, 2012
    Not into TOPS at all.
  14. LukeTheSpook


    Jan 2, 2015
    The marketing and names turn a lot of People off but Tops makes great knives. They make a ton of different models and I'd grab a tops and hit the woods, anytime.

    Also, what tops does really well: handles. Great handles, great shape and materials. I'm a guy more interested in the handle than the name or the steel.
    19-3ben and KELAMA like this.
  15. CookieRawwr

    CookieRawwr Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 23, 2014
    I really like the looks of that Wild Boar Hunter. I might give Tops another chance and add one to my full Ti ZT 0452 order. I did sell my Brothers of Bushcraft.
  16. Lapedog

    Lapedog Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 7, 2016
    Love tops. I was shocked at how easy their 1095 was to sharpen. Some of their knives are very good. Some like the BOB are practical and well recieved. Some are designed by a grizzled ex vet with a useless set of features. Like a special nose picker attatchment, but it only works on asian noses.

    Still everything they make is good quality. I find some of their grinds to be abit obtuse. Even my tops BOB is WAY thicker than it needs to be.
  17. ThePeacent


    Sep 15, 2013
    they are very nice "sharpened prybars" in that they will stand up to abuse, prying, batoning and all wild uses, being thick and heavy as a result.

    Their 1095 is spot-on and their handles praised a lot, plus their warranty seems to be very nice and the variety of designs wide and big.
    Some of the collabs are a bit too gimmicky and some models' names a bit too "tactical operator" but they are serviceable, sturdy blades for the most part
  18. W. Anderson

    W. Anderson Basic Member Basic Member

    Jun 22, 2016
    I had a Back Bite back when Rowan was doing the heat treat. Deffinitely a quality piece. Fit and finish were spot on. It didn't come as sharp as I prefer, but it took a shaving edge quickly on the sharpmaker. I've also had the chance to put a friend's newer Steel Eagle to good use around the camp mostly processing wood and it functioned well in that role. They seem to have a lot in common quality-wise with ESEE. I'd say you can't go wrong, they're a solid brand at a good price.
  19. Wolverine666

    Wolverine666 Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 7, 2009
    I love my TOPS SXB.

    Just wish they'd make some knives with stainless.
    Nocturnal13 likes this.
  20. unklfranco


    Apr 2, 2011
    Yes, TOPS makes good knives. Some of their designs are a bit wacky but the materials and heat treat have always been high quality. If you see one you like, try it.
    Lapedog likes this.

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