Back when SOG Specialty Knives introduced the Tomcat in the late ’80s, it was not only the first folder from the company but it also won the award for Overall Knife of the Year. Nearly 20 years later, the third generation of the Tomcat continues to prove it is no one-hit wonder.
The SOG Tomcat 3.0 boasts a timeless look with a design that balances finesse with sheer strength. This gorgeous knife is a force to be reckoned with and features advances that any knife enthusiast can appreciate.
Here is a good overview of the knife from Tactical on YouTube:
It starts with the large 3.75-inch blade made from VG-10 stainless steel, which is a true workers’ steel, thanks to its excellent corrosion resistance and ability to easily take and hold an edge. The satin clip-point blade also features jimping for better control and dual thumb studs for quick one-handed opening.
In the pantheon of insane weapons, it’s easy to look at more modern offerings like the PHASR or vomit gun. But one of the fiercest and most difficult weapons to use is the ancient whip sword known as the urumi.
The urumi may very well be one of the most dangerous melee weapons ever — not only for foes but also for the person using the weapon. While the weapon hasn’t been used as such for generations, it is still wielded in demonstrations and Indian martial arts.
This unusual blade is essentially a bendy piece of sharp metal that the user wields like a whip. Here is a look at a fighting demonstration with the urumi sword.
The urumi, which translates to curling blade and is sometimes known as the aara or chuttuval, comes from southern India where it was used as a weapon back in the day. Eventually, it fell out of favor but became incorporated into Kalaripayattu martial arts, one of the oldest fighting styles in the world.
I know your dad always told you, “Never ever use your knife to pry.” But he’s clearly never used the latest Badass Knife of the Week.
The KA-BAR BK3 Becker Tac Tool is the ultimate tactical fixed blade that takes the definition of hard-use knives to a whole new level. This knife is designed to be used and abused, tortured and beaten, and pushed to the extreme.
Legendary knifemaker Ethan Becker and 37-year police veteran John Benner designed the Becker Tac Tool for urban SWAT teams who would need a reliable tool that could pry, chop, hack, chisel, hammer, and more. Although the boys delivered a remarkable tool for SWAT teams, the BK3 has taken on life as an all-around survival tool.
The heart of the Tac Tool is the beastly blade. Coming in at a hefty 7 inches, the blade is made from 1095 Cro-Van steel with a thickness of a quarter of an inch. The partially serrated blade is powerful enough to pry open doors without breaking a sweat and a slot on the black offers another method for cutting rope or saving lives.
The karambit is an ancient agricultural tool created by the Minangkabau people of Indonesia and modeled after the claws of big cats. These days, the karambit has entered the knife realm as a versatile self-defense tool that allows for different fighting techniques, thanks to its curved design and finger ring.
While karambits are probably best known for their self-defense qualifications, they can also make great everyday carry tools. Not only do they have comfortable, ergonomic designs but the blades also sometimes work much better than straight edged blades in certain situations (like cutting rope, for example).
While you may want to carry a secondary straight-edged knife for good measure, these five folding karambit knives have worked well as EDCs for many people.
1. Smith & Wesson Extreme Ops Karambit
I’ll start things off with one of the most understated folding karambits. The Smith & Wesson Extreme Ops Karambit features a 3.5-inch blade with less of a curve than other models. This gives the blade more versatility than a pure karambit style blade and reduces the overall “scare” factor.
The knife still retains the claw-like design with G-10 handle scales and a stainless steel finger ring. The blade opens via ambidextrous thumb studs and stays engaged with a liner lock. There’s a reason this knife is a best-seller at Knife Depot.
2. Cold Steel Tiger Claw
Sure, Cold Steel is known for its aggressive designs and focus on self-defense, but this Andrew Demko creation is actually made with everyday carry in mind. The Cold Steel Tiger Claw was designed after Demko aimed to make a multipurpose folder that could perform while he was on the job as an electrician or engineer.
Normally, these videos only elicit a shrug in me, but some are just really captivating. In the latest video, the Backyard Scientist created a rail to act as a track for a knife to be shot 150 miles per hour at an object. To add to the insanity, he also heated the knife up to a temperature of about 1000 degrees before it’s propelled.
The vast forests of Finland are home to an estimated 1,500 brown bears — creatures that can go from docile and majestic to fierce and intimidating in a moments notice.
Cold Steel combines elements of the popular Finnish puukko knife with the spirit of the bear in the Finn Bear.
If you’ve never carried a fixed blade as your everyday carry, this is the perfect knife to get you started. It all begins with the 4-inch blade made of German 4116 stainless steel, which is known for its corrosion resistance and ability to be resharpened easily. The hollow grind edge coupled with the blade’s shape makes this a practical knife that people have been using in some iteration for centuries.
This knife is robust enough to skin a moose and delicate enough to slice an apple, making it a master of the outdoors.
This year is already shaping up to be a great one for knife lovers. We’ve got a ton of new innovations coming out of the knife community, and some interesting new designs.
As always, Kershaw is releasing more than 30 knives that’ll sure to appeal to the masses. While there tends to be an overreliance on 8Cr13MoV steel and the SpeedSafe mechanism, the diversity of designs is encouraging.
You can find the full list of new knives on the Kershaw website, but here are the 10 we’re most excited to get in the coming months.
10. Kershaw Reverb
The first knife we’re looking forward to is the Reverb. This lightweight knife weighs 1.6 ounces and is billed as a knife for outdoor activities. With a 2.5-inch blade made from 8Cr13MoV steel, the Reverb features a multifaceted handle. The front is G-10 with carbon fiber overlays and the back is steel.
And another appealing aspect is the carabiner clip. I wrote an article a while back about the best knives with carabiners and this will surely make the list.
9. Kershaw Fraxion
I’m a fan of Jens Anso, so I was pretty excited to see the Anso-designed Fraxion. This is a sleek and slim knife with an all-black profile. It also has G-10 handles with carbon fiber overlays. It’s a manual knife with a flipper and uses 8CR13MoV stainless steel.
Kershaw is famous for making affordable folders with outstanding craftsmanship and top-notch technology. And our latest Badass Knife of the Week is the perfect example of this.
The Kershaw Oso Sweet is an exceptional everyday carry that proves you can get a well-made knife by one of the top-rated knife brands around without selling a kidney. That’s why it’s no surprise this oh so sweet (get it?) pocket knife from Kershaw is among the brand’s best-selling.
Its qualification as an EDC starts with the knife’s speed. With a gentle pull of the ambidextrous flipper mechanism, the blade shoots to life using Kershaw’s patented SpeedSafe assisted opening.
When the first modern multitool was introduced in the late 1800s, it was truly revolutionary and groundbreaking. While the idea of combining a few tools into a single gadget dates back hundreds of years, this design was so well-conceived it remains in production to this day. Yes, I’m talking about the Swiss Army knife.
If you take a look at the design of the Modell 1890, one of the first iterations of the SAK, you’ll notice how surprisingly similar it looks to current Swiss Army knives. It just means that the design was near perfection.
Swiss Army Modell 1890
The design of multitools stayed relatively unchanged for decades until a young man spent time traveling abroad after graduating from Oregon State University with a degree in mechanical engineering. During his travels, he realized that the one thing multitools was missing were functional pliers.
That man was named Tim Leatherman.
In 1983, Tim completely changed the multitool landscape with his first design called the Pocket Survival Tool (PST). Now retired, the knife set the standard for what a multitool with pliers should look like — tools coming out of the two handles and the ability to fold into a rectangle.
Unfortunately, the way things work is that one company makes something revolutionary and the others just try to copy it and add small changes. It’s no coincidence that most multitools these days look like the Leatherman Skeletool (a very good design).
More than 30 years after that last true innovation in the multitool world, we’ve been waiting for the next big thing.
SOG may have found it.
SOG Baton Series Rethinks the Multitool
Most multitools fold up into thick bricks that take up way too much space in your pocket. That includes both SAKs and Leatherman types.
So SOG decided to do something a little different.
In conjunction with global design and consulting firm IDEO, which is responsible for such innovations as Apple’s first mouse and the convenient Swiffer, SOG created a new line of multitools called the Baton series.
Here is a quick look from GearSight:
When the tools are in the open position with the pliers (or scissors) engaged, it looks like any other pliers multitool. The difference is that the tool folds up into a relatively thin vertical design that’s more in line with a marker than a brick.
The minds behind ESEE Knives and Randall’s Adventure & Training know a thing or two about making a darn good knife. Jeff Randall and Mike Perrin became frustrated with the bloated and unnecessary offerings of survival gear and made their own line of field grade knives called ESEE Knives.
The ESEE-6 is the perfect representation of what Randall and Perrin were hoping to achieve with their line of knives.
Boasting an overall blade length of 6.5 inches, the ESEE-6 is a no-holds-barred knife that will do everything from batoning logs to chopping carrots.