Thursday, January 3, 2013

Cold Steel Kukri Machete

I originally bought the Cold Steel Kukri Machete as a novelty, inspired by the khukuris carried by Milla Jovovich in "Resident Evil: Extinction".

(This isn't a great picture of the khukuri, but that's only part of the point.)

It wasn't a novelty for very long. It quickly became one of the most useful yard tools I own. It easily cuts small limbs, saplings and tall grass. If I need to clear brush, this is the first thing I go for. It would make a great backpacking tool also.

The blade measures 13 inches long by about 2.75 inches at the widest point. It is 18 inches long overall. The handle is made of injection molded plastic and was not very comfortable at first. There was a sharp ridge along the molding seam which I removed with 220 grit sandpaper. I would like for the handle to be a little bit fatter, but I usually wear gloves, so it's no big deal.

At 25-30 dollars, this is a great value and an awesome addition to anyone's kit.

Semper Paratus

CRKT M16-13M Folder

This knife by Columbia River Knife and Tool is another of my favorite EDC items. I can't remember how long I've had it, I think about five years. I got it for around fifty dollars at a gun show.

The half-serrated blade measures 4 inches from the tip to the center of the pivot. It opens easily with one hand. Total open length is about eight inches. The handle is covered with a kind of hard anodized coating that feels slightly waxy to the touch. After five years of daily carry, it's still mostly intact.

This is a liner-lock style knife. The little lever just below the pivot is for locking the blade open, effectively turning it into a fixed-blade.

Overall, this is a durable and well-made knife. It's served me well for years and will do so for many more.

Semper Paratus

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Oakley Half Jacket S.I.

It's been a while since I've posted, so I want to do a few quick reviews of some items I've been using for a while. One true test of a product's quality is how well it stands up over time. I want to share a few that have served me well.

I have been an avid Oakley user since 1990. The fit, feel, clarity, durability and light weight make Oakley eyewear worth every penny I've paid for them. Cheap sunglasses don't even compare. I have had several pairs in different styles, but I want to focus on my favorite, the Half Jacket S.I.

The "S.I." stands for "Standard Issue" and designates this model as intended for military personnel. The only real difference is the matte black frame. The "civilian" version is shiny. There is a version with polarized lenses, but mine are not.

I have worn these frequently for about five years and they show very little wear. The lenses are not even scratched. The view is undistorted and they are ANSI-approved for impact resistance. They are also comfortable and durable. These are the first sunglasses I reach for. Another quality product from Oakley.

Semper Paratus.