There have been a lot of pieces of gear, knives especially, that I have reviewed on other sites, places where I don’t have the word count to use my scoring system. Because of that people have regularly asked me what a given knife would score, if it were reviewed in the scoring system. So, after some time, I have a big enough back catalog of off-site reviews to make this worthwhile.
Canal Street Cutlery Boy’s Knife in AG Russell Exclusive Gold G10 (Review; Out of Production)
This knife is, for me, the perfect traditional knife. It is one of the finest made blades I have handled, comparing well to a number of custom knives with tight lines and clean materials. The translucent yellow (aka “gold”) G10 is a wonderful material—charming enough to be traditional, but without the expansion and contraction of natural materials. The blade of 440C is ground paper thin and slices like it belongs in a delicatessen. I don’t know how, if I were given free reign, how I would make this knife better. Even an upgraded steel wouldn’t really make much of a difference to me—the blade geometry and the mirror finish make this 440C punch well above its weight. The knife is also the ideal size and shape to be people friendly. Sadly, the CSC Boy’s Knife is out of production because Canal Street went out of business. What a shame. This is one of the best knives in my collection and easily gets a perfect score. If you can find one on the open market, buy it. You won’t be disappointed. Even at twice the original retail price, this blade is worth it. Think about that—when was the last time you could double the price of a product and have it still be easily worth it? This is one of the reasons I don’t feel the need to own a Mnandi. This is like a Mnandi but with much more charm. I also like the Boy’s Knife pattern, which is essentially a 85% sized Barlow with a smaller bolster. So great, so gone, so sad.
Score: 20 out of 20, PERFECT
So the deployment method, the hollow thumb ramp (HTR) is good. No question it works. It is a bit of a gunk magnet, but so are a lot of thumb studs. But the real attraction here is that Cold Steel used a premium steel (S35VN), ground it thin, put it in a thin handle, and gave the whole package the great Tri-Ad lock. In many ways this knife is Cold Steel’s best competition for the all-time great Paramilitiary II. I like the PM2 a smidge better, but the fact that I am even mentioning the Golden Eye in the same breath is a big deal. This is a good, even great knife. If you like blades bigger than 3” you should consider the Golden Eye. It is a bit overpriced, but the fit and finish is fine.
Score: 18 out of 20 (1 off for Design because of the gappy exposed tang, 1 off for Deployment Method for the gunk attracting nature of the HTR)
Tuff Thumbz has always been one of my favorites and seeing a design of his instantiated in a high end production knife is pretty cool. The Slimfoot isn't my favorite of his designs (that would be the Mini Catalyst) but it is certainly unique. And good thing because this is a very by the numbers knife featureswise. I am sure I have had enough TFFs to last me a lifetime, but just in case, here is another. I like the flipper tab, the blade shape, the chamfered handles, and the steel (S35VN), but I do not like the girth of this blade. Its massively thick and a lot of different aspects of the knife are negatively effected by that. I also dislike the sculpted titanium pocket clip (stop me if you have heard this before). And if I were a petty person (oh, I am don't worry), I'd be upset about the screws in the carbon fiber. Talk about a way to break up the flow. All of this comes together for a decent, but not great knife. The price is outrageous, given other knives in this Quick Hits list.
Score: 16 out of 20 (1 off for Design, 1 off for carry, 1 off for grip, 1 off for clip)
This knife is a great chopper. I can’t think of a better mid-budget beater than this knife. I have owned my BK-9 for years. I have chopped, sliced, and hacked for years. The finish is coming off. It looks like something that has been in a war and come back. I have sharpened this knife many, many times. But thanks to the very good heat treated 1095 Cro-Van, the knife always bounces back. This steel is very good in the role of a hard use fixed blade. I also love the Becker handle. It’s one of the best ever. The nylon sheath is awful in so many ways, but there are dozens of aftermarket sheaths available, as Beckerheads love modding and upgrading their gear more than Jeep owners (Beckerheads:knives::Jeepers:automobiles, BTW). You need to ignore the score here. Just like with the Bravo 1, a shitty sheath drags down the score on an amazing knife.
Score: 16 out of 20 (2 off for sheath carry and 2 off for sheath accessibility)
LA Police Gear TBFK (Review)
Want a value reset? Here you go. S35VN steel on a $35 knife really upsets the entire steel/value equation. This is the beauty of capitalism—competition breeds greatness and here there is no way around it, this knife is an all time great value. The TBFK is not perfect. The lock bar sticks out like a snaggletooth. The entire knife is way too heavy for what it is, but these are nits to pick. This is a good knife, a great beater, and one of the best values I have ever seen.
Score: 18 out of 20 (1 off for Design and 1 off for Lock)
Oh man, the best knife made better. I literally can't think of anything to write. You know this is a great knife in every way and even I can't pick at it. If you want a Sebenza, and you should, get this one. It is clearly the best version of the knife available and that is saying a lot given how good the stock version is. See, there, I figured out something to write. NO BRAINER.
Overall Score: 20 out of 20; PERFECT