Breed Custom Knives H-Tac Preview

 

The first time I heard mention of Breed Custom Knives, and it’s owner Kim Breed was when Clay from Thetruthaboutknives.com came home from Blade show 2014 with one of his knives. Kim’s model 14 fixed blade stopped him in his tracks and was his purchase from that Blade Show.

Ever since then I’ve wanted to get my hands on one of Kim’s designs, and that has finally happened!

Recently Breed Custom Knives has released a new model named the H-Tac. This new knife is a mix between Kim’s hunting knife and a tactical knife which hopes to deliver the best of both worlds. If you’ve never thought about EDC’ing a fixed blade, the H-Tac might change your mind.

Continue reading Breed Custom Knives H-Tac Preview

W.R. Case & Sons Seahorse Whittler Review-reposted from TTAK

W.R. Case & Sons Seahorse Whittler Review

In a world of traditional slip joint pocket knives, the Seahorse Whittler by W.R. Case & Sons stands distinctly out. Forgoing the traditional blade shapes and handle shapes for a very unique look, while still maintaining an exceptional level of performance.

The Seahorse Whittler that was provided to me for the purpose of this review came dressed in smooth persimmon orange bone handles. The smoothness and the handle color remind me of an iced cold orange cream soda, or an orange creamsicle on a hot summer day.

While certainly unique looking, does the Seahorse Whittler from Case have the guts to be a good knife? make the jump to find out.

 

The Specs

Handle length: 4 inches

Handle material: Smooth persimmon orange bone

Overall length(with main blade out): 6.17 inches

Steel: Cases Trusharp Stainless steel

weight: 2.6 ounces

Main Blade: Wharncliffe

Secondary blades: Coping and Pen

MSRP: roughly $100

Street Price: roughly $65

two backsprings, and no half stops

 

I have carried this Seahorse Whittler now for about two months non stop, it rides daily in my pants or shorts pocket and it has seen plenty of use. The first thing that jumps out at you is its very unique look, with a super aggressive wharncliffe styled main knife blade, and two smaller secondary blades it looks unlike any slipjoint I’ve seen in person before.

You will either love or hate the way it looks, personally, I love it. In my opinion, as slipjoints become more popular folks are going to look for pocket knives that stand out, and set themselves apart from other knives out there.

Food Prep

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Due to the main blade being only 2.17 inches long, and very thick towards the end, the Seahorse whittler is not the knife that I would want to bring along with my as a food prep knife. With that being said, there are two instances that I found the Seahorse Whittler to be a fantastic choice at. One is in slicing apples, I work at various job sites throughout the day, and eat apples non stop. The thin tip is perfect for peeling, and the thick base is perfect for splitting them apart.

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The second use I found the wharncliffe knife great for is taking the top off of strawberries. My almost 5 year old devours 2 boxes  of strawberries a week, and the Seahorse has seen a ton of use in this aspect. The tip of the wharncliffe is absolutely perfect for making the small circular cut necessary to do this task easily.

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EDC Tasks

The Seahorse Whittler is such a useful little tool when it comes to your everyday activities. From cutting fishing line, cardboard, paper, rope it does a very good job. The straight edge of the Wharncliffe can be made very sharp( I used my previously reviewed Work Sharp guided field sharpener for the job) and without much effort can be made sharp enough to shave hair off your arm, or make mincemeat of paper and newsprint.

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One of my favorite thing about traditional slip joint knives, is that in general there is no fear factor of them. You can carry them and use them just about anywhere without any second thoughts. It’s for this reason that I always have a slipjoint on me, and when in public is generally the knife I use.

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Wharncliffe styled blades usually excel at this type of cutting task due to the straight blade which is ideal for cutting rope. The knife on the Seahorse whittler is no exception. Whether cutting through a single piece, or 4 pieces of rope, the blade absolutely flies through it.

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For such a diminutive sized knife, the main blade packs a punch way above its weight class.

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Towards the end of this review I happened to purchase our first home, and there was hundreds of cardboard boxes to break down…like hundreds! A perfect test for the Seahorse whittler to be put too. The knife is an absolute joy to use for breaking down cardboard, it slices through it with no issue at all, and can even handle very heavy duty boxes.

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The only issue that did spring up, was occasionally when slicing heavy duty cardboard, the slipjoint nature of the knife got the best of it. The thick bottom stock of the knife would become stuck and when pulling it out would sometimes partially close, but once adjusted for this it wasn’t an issue anymore.

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After about 200 linear feet of cardboard I had to touch up the edge a bit with my WorkSharp guided field sharpener.

Whittling

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I am no whittler, and in fact have absolutely no skill when it comes to the act of whittling. That being said, the Seahorse whittler is uniquely setup to excel in the hands of someone with even a small bit of skill. The main wharncliffe blade bites deeply into wood and can be controlled exceptionally well. The wharncliffe rides on both of the knifes backsprings which gives it a very robust feel, and keeps it from closing as easily on your fingers.

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As well, the two smaller secondary blades compliment that main wharncliffe nicely. There is the small coping knife, and a small pen blade. The coping knife in particular is nice for when you need to make a tight circular cut, or for when you need a small knife with no point. While the pen blade excels at tiny precise straight cuts.

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Final thoughts

The W.R. Case & Sons Seahorse Whittler is a game changer in my mind and should be first and foremost on your list of possible future purchases. With it’s unique design, awesome handle choices, comfortable handle and exceptionally useful blade designs you really can’t go wrong. A strong EDC knife that can go just about anywhere with you and can double as both a work knife, or a slightly thicker gentleman’s(or lady!) knife. I do wish that Case would also offer it in their Chrome Vanadium(or CV), their preferred Carbon steel, or maybe someday in a modern day “supersteel” like S30V.

Continue reading W.R. Case & Sons Seahorse Whittler Review-reposted from TTAK

Accessory review; Custom sheath from ML-Knives.com

(from thetruthaboutknives.com)

As written about previously(here), I own and carry a Smith & Sons Mudbug lockback folding knife as my main work knife. I used to carry it in the coin pocket in my Roundhouse or Carhartt work pants, but every now and then when I’m hanging over the edge of a roof, or am on my back checking out the siding of the house the knife would slide out. Once I even lost it for a few days until a nice customer found it outside and called me to let me know.

Clearly I needed to find a better way to carry the Mudbug. Smith & Sons makes a leather sheath for their knife, but for me the sheath doesn’t work. It rides too high and impedes my bending ability for getting through tight spaces such as a crawlspace under a house, or a tight attic while doing my inspections.

I needed something else.

Lucky for me, one of the premier hand forged knife makers in the countries lives right in my backyard. I’ve developed a relationship for Matt Lesniewski over the past year or so, and have been to his shop several times to check out his awesome knives. I currently own two of them(reviews will be coming at some point), and while his knives are amazing, his leather work is just as good. Pictured below is one of his knives that I currently own.

I dropped him off my knife and only had two requests for the sheath, that it be a traditional snap belt sheath, and be in natural leather. He gave me a two week time table and I was on my way.

It was finished in a little over a week and I went back in to pick it up.

The sheath was perfect. Thick American leather from Wickett and Craig located in Curwensville, Pennsylvania and a producer of leather since 1867. Matt, using his signature durable saddle stitch and 5 twist waxed cord was able to create an awesome leather sheath that should last for years and patina beautifully.

I’ve been wearing it every day for work(6 days a week) since I picked it up 2 months ago. In that time it hasn’t come unsnapped on accident once, gotten caught on any nails or attic hatches, and is barely showing any wear and tear from constantly being scraped along concrete in basements or 2×4’s in attics.

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Matt even made sure to stitch a small piece of leather on the inside of the sheath to sit between the knife and the brass button. This keeps the button from scratching the knife while it’s resting safely in the sheath.

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On the rear of the sheath, very lightly tooled in is the MLknives mark, country of origin, Matt’s last name, and the year it was made.

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All in all I couldn’t be happier with this sheath, the way it was delivered earlier than the time frame given to me, and how it is worn on my belt.

If you are looking for any custom leather work, or hand forged knives for that matter, make sure you check ML-Knives.com out! you will not be disappointed. As well, give him a follow on Instagram @mlknives

Housekeeping

 

As some of you may have noticed my posting frequency over the past two months has gone down. Between work, two kids and a million side projects I’ve had to cut back significantly on the amount of writing/posting I can do.

While I’m still dedicated to the cause of promoting American made gear(rugged gear to be specific), I can’t put the amount of time into the site that it requires to maintain up to date and quality content.

It is for this reason that I am going to be slowly phasing out the amount of original content for RuggedAmericanGear.com.

This doesn’t mean that we are going away though! I have been writing for TheSticksOutfitter.com over the past few months, and have begun writing for Thetruthaboutknives.com just last week(see their announcement here).

There are still several reviews that I am working on, including the Roundhouse and Carhartt work pants, as well as a few others. The blog will continue to be operational, and I will be reposting articles from other blogs here as well.

I’m exceptionally proud of the work I’ve been able to put out on this website, the contacts that I’ve made and the majority of the articles written. I came into this venture looking for a creative outlet with zero website building experience, and relatively computer illiterate.

Please continue to check back in, as I will be updating with content(just not as regularly!), and make sure to follow me via Facebook, twitter and Instagram!

W.R. Case & Sons Seahorse Whittler Preview

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(reposted from thetruthaboutknives.com)

As someone who EDC’s a slip joint pocket knife everyday, there are several old standby models to choose from. Whether your going with a traditional trapper model with a clip point and spey blade, or a large stockman with bone or antler handles, these designs are classic. However, in recent years many companies have come out with much more unique designs that incorporate classic slipjoint styling, in very neat handle and blade configurations.

One such slip joint is the W.R. Case & Sons Seahorse Whittler. The Seahorse Whittler is a medium to large sized 3 bladed slip joint that is designed…you guessed it! to whittle, or in general to slice stuff up!

What makes the knife so unique is two fold. Firstly, it has a unique handle shape. It starts narrow in the middle and curves slightly up as it reaches both ends, with one side noticeably larger than the other. Secondly, is that very pronounced and curved Wharncliffe shapes blade.

Wharncliffe blade

Wharncliffe blade

I’ve been carrying the Seahorse Whittler every other day, switching off between a soon to be previewed W.R. Case & Sons Teardrop Jack(another unique slipjoint!) and my initial impression is very good. Their Tru Sharp Stainless steel while a basic stainless is very easy to sharpen, holds a nice edge and can be gotten very sharp with basic sharpening skills and equipment.

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The main wharncliffe blade flies through paper and newsprint and can slice an apple well. The secondary blades are a pen knife, and coping knife blade. One being a perfectly good utility shape(the pen blade) and the other being a fairly trade specific knife shape(the coping blade) that at one point was popular among carpenters and electricians due to being able to make cuts in tight areas as well as circular cuts.

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coping knife

This specific Seahorse Whittler is dressed in smooth persimmon orange bone handles and operates on a two spring system. The main blade, the wharncliffe opens on both of the springs creating a fairly strong resistance when using the knife. this allows you to be a little more aggressive when whittling or carving. Both of the smaller secondary blades only open on one each of the backsprings respectively.

Part of the appeal about slip joint knives for me is that they can be carried practically anywhere with nary a sideways glance. While I always have a modern folding knife on me(as well as a small fixed blade typically), the knife I go to the most in public is always a slipjoint pocket knife. When you deliberately reach in to your pocket and unfold one of these bad boys with two hands you are more likely to get compliments than anything else.

I’m very excited to fully test this slip joint out, and want to thank W.R. Case & Sons for letting us use the knife for the purposes of this review!

 

Question of the Day: What is your perfect work knife?

 

The following is an article I wrote for Thetruthaboutknives.com and it is partially reposted below. Hit the link here, or at the bottom to read the full post!

 

What is your perfect work knife?

Does such a thing exist?

In short, no, but there are a few that come damn close. Obviously depending on your line of work this knife will vary. For my day job I am an estimator/project manager for a pest control/construction company. My day consists of inspecting attics, crawlspaces, basements, roofs and any other cramped, dark, damp and uncomfortable places that you can think of. I constantly have to cut fiberglass insulation, tips off of caulk tubes and pop cut “peek” holes into sheetrock.

I need a knife that is long enough to do all of these things, slim enough that it doesn’t get in my way while maneuvering through cramped tight places, and non threatening enough not to scare any customer when I take it out.

Continue reading Question of the Day: What is your perfect work knife?

Magtac LED Rechargeable Flashlight Review

 

For the first time ever I’m not going to recommend a product, not even a little bit. Maglite was awesome enough to send me two flashlights to review. The Maglite Magcharger rechargeable LED was amazing, and you can read the review here.

However, the Magtac LED rechargeable tactical flashlight is anything but.

Make the jump to check out the review.

Continue reading Magtac LED Rechargeable Flashlight Review

Filson’s Restoration Department

 

This article from OutsideOnline.com was sent over to me via H. Clay Aalders of TheTruthAboutKnives.com. It goes into the two main folks behind the restoration department of Filson.com.

For those that don’t know, Filson is one of THE original American made brands, and one of the longest American made clothing companies left. Filson has perhaps the absolute best warranty in the clothing business, and it hasn’t changed since the company has started. They spell it out quite simply on their website;

We guarantee every item made by Filson. No more, no less. We believe in our products and stand by the quality of workmanship, craftsmanship and materials in each one. We guarantee the lifetime of each item against failure or damage in its intended usage.”

When you send an item in for a warranty exchange, that item makes its way to Evan Franz and Claire beaumont where the two create unique, one of a kind items from the materials provided to them.

Continue reading Filson’s Restoration Department

How to choose a knife

 

Reposted from TheSticksOutfitter.com;

For any outdoorsman or women a knife is a crucial piece of gear, and selecting the right knife for you is an important decision. Just like a firearm, different knives are meant for different tasks, and not all are created equal. You would never use a filet knife to chop wood or a chopping knife to filet a fish. With all the thousands of different options out there, how do you go about choosing the correct knife for you?

The first step is figuring out what your main use for your knife is going to be. If it’s a hunting knife for deer, then it needs to be different than a hunting knife for squirrels. Or if you’re a hiker/camper and you need a camp knife that can process food, break up some kindling, and carve a tent stake in a pinch you will have different needs.

I personally break up my outdoor knives into three broad categories. General use, hunting, and lastly, heavy use knives.

Continue reading How to choose a knife

Maglite Magcharger LED rechargeable review

 

When Maglite sent me two of their top of the line torch’s I was incredibly excited to test them out. The one I was most excited about was the smaller MagTac(preview here), and I thought this Maglite Magcharger(preview here) would be nice, but it was honestly kind of an afterthought.

It’s too big, and too heavy I thought(both things being true), but the performance is just amazing, and the size and weight lend it to be very good as certain tasks. While not in any way, shape, or form an EDC light, it is most certainly a crucial light to own.

Make the jump to read the full review;

Continue reading Maglite Magcharger LED rechargeable review