• Review: Viking Armament "CRUCIBLE" AR-15

    Most of you reading our blog articles are gun owners or active firearms enthusiasts, and you probably are already aware that there are a plethora of AR-15 rifle manufacturers to choose from. Some are excellent, some are med-level at best and some are not worth the money. [...]

  • Benchmade SOCP Dagger Review

    If you carry a knife everyday for defensive purposes, you’ll probably understand that there are some serious issues with folders…mainly, some are just flat out to slow to deploy when compared to fixed blades. Ever wonder why soldiers aren’t issued folders? That’s because fixed blades generally rule in terms of reliability, effectiveness and speed of deployment. [...]

  • Situational and Spatial Awareness

    I recently read a comment on a popular tactical instructors YouTube video that was referring to that particular instructors style of teaching - based on what the person commenting saw in this instructors video clips. The "commentor" was basically stating that the instructor took too long in his explanations (regarding a firearm shooting drill) and that another popular instructor (we won't mention who) within the industry provided quicker instructions and answers to his students questions. Now, you gotta ask yourself....are short, direct and to the point answers really a good thing, especially considering what subject is being taught?[...]

Saturday, December 5, 2015

You Big Bastard!

It's not very often that a knife and tool company makes a blade that reminds me of my favorite character from an Austin Powers movie, but today I can honestly say it's true. Although their blades aren't in any way named after a movie character; http://www.borneinfire.com still makes some big ass beefy knives - the one pictured above and reviewed here is the BIG BASTARD. Borne In Fire's founder, Thomas Rice, has over 25 years of experience in both the field and shop, as a master metal-smith and soldier. This blade is a testament to the quality in his work.
When the guys from http://www.borneinfire.com approached me to review one of their handmade Big Bastard knives, I immediately noticed its sheer size (I know, I know....that's what she said). The blade length alone is 12" inches! Needless to say, this is NOT an EDC blade by any means. Naturally being the curious minded knife owner that I am, I wondered what the specific purpose would be for such a big knife. According to their website, the Bastard Series of Functional Knives©, are created from ¼ inch thick 1095, hot rolled steel, made right here in the USA and the goal was to take on several roles and are intended to effectively take the place of several knives and/or tools.
A Quick Note About 1095 Steel
There are literally thousands of types of steel. Not all are created equal and not all make great blades. 1095, which is .95% carbon, is probably the most common steel used for knife blades. 1095 steel keeps a great edge, is easy to sharpen and has more wear resistance than most other steels, but would also be less tough. The major drawback to this type of steel is that it rusts easily. Because of this issue, you will often see 1095 blades with some type of coating to combat rust - which http://www.borneinfire.com does offer.
If you're normally one to only carry a big chopper and a small hatchet into the field, then this is your blade. The blade is BIG and THICK enough (.250") to chop like a small machete but with more girth. During our initial testing, it's extra weight really helped break small and medium sized tree beaches and chop larger pieces of fire wood rather easily, which would be great for survival shelter building or batoning firewood. However, if you're into bushcraft, this blade might be too large and beefy, just my opinion. However, some users may like a larger blade for that. Many people seem to prefer big and heavy knives in a "survival" knife because all things being equal, big and heavy = hard to break. This beast isn't breaking. But, with the purpose of survival in mind, would you want to use the Big Bastard to fillet fish or field dress a deer, probably not (however I just recently learned it has been done). This tool is made for bigger, tougher jobs.
Some other badass blades made by the http://www.borneinfire.com
As for ergonomics, the blade feels like a small sword in your hand. It's heavy, but very well balanced. The aggressively checkered G10 grip is a little short even for my average sized hands, and it really bites into your hand as you make contact with whatever you're chopping; which means you'll probably want to wear some decent gloves to protect your dishpan hands. Still, the blade feels very sturdy and adds some additional protection with the use of its unique cross guard - which I thought was a nice touch.
The cross-guard also called a quillon, is produced from a single piece of structural steel, tapped into place and secured with two tool steel pins and the same structural adhesive used to hold assault helicopter rotor blades together. That's some pretty impressive glue! This design has two strike points, one at the base of the cross guard and the other at the butt of the knife. Among other things, this feature allows the knife to be used safely to remove the glass from automobiles windows in order to rescue a trapped occupant. The butt strike point has been tempered for durability as well.
Every Born In Fire knife carries a lifetime warranty against failure in the field. Again, I really don't see one breaking, but in the event it does, you're tool is totally protected. If the knife fails under use, the user only has to return the knife to the company, along with a letter of explanation, a story if you will, and the knife will be repaired or replaced.
In summary, if you're looking for a great quality handmade field blade that you can trust with your life and not be afraid of throwing everything at it....purchase one of these BIG BASTARDS. If you're interested in picking up one of these badass blades for yourself or if you want to learn more about these them, visit http://www.borneinfire.com and tell them we sent you.
Big Bastard Specs:
  • Blade length 12"
  • Blade width: 1.3 inches
  • Blade thickness: .250" (Strong!)
  • OA length: 12 inches
  • Handles: G10, black, 10 lines per inch full depth checkered.
  • Handle length: 4.75 inches
  • Fasteners: 6-32 Flat head Stainless Steel screw and bushing.
  • Cerakote ceramic epoxy weapon's finish, original design.
  • Selective drawdown tempering in areas such as the guard and striking area of the butt.
  • Differential hand tempered blade

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Review: Viking Armament "CRUCIBLE" AR-15

Most of you reading our blog articles are gun owners or active firearms enthusiasts, and you probably are already aware that there are a plethora of AR-15 rifle manufacturers to choose from. Some are excellent, some are med-level at best and some are not worth the money. If you've got the need and the money, you'll probably shell out a good amount of coin for a high-end rifle, but most everyday guys and gals don't have $5-7k to dump onto a custom rifle. Therefore they go to their local gun-store and pick out a ready made AR-15 rifle with all the fixins' off the shelf for $1,000 to $2,000 or so. There are cheaper models available, minus the bling, but you do get what you pay for when it comes to firearms. That's just the reality of it all. Sure we all love to see the Instagram and Facebook promo pictures of the beautiful high-end rifles with some ultra-badass operator ninja super-soldier modeling it, but the reality is, most average people won't pony up the kind of funds required to own a custom rifle like that. Instead these average Joe's live their hot-brass dreams through the use of a low to mid-grade store bought rifle. And honestly, there is nothing wrong with that!

BUT,.... if you could spend less money and get a better quality rifle, why wouldn't you? Let me introduce you to a little know manufacturer from Grand Junction Colorado called Viking ArmamentViking Armament makes several lines of AR styled rifles; CRUCIBLE, ULFBERHT, Ullr, Mjolnir, and the TYR. So, what makes these rifles any better than some of the main stream named rifles out there on the gun-store walls? Well...they may not be better per se as that's all relative to one's opinion, but you definitely get more than what you pay for if you are comparing rifle to rifle.
We did our testing and evaluation using the mid-length CRUCIBLE model (Caliber 5.56 mm/.223 rem), since that is their "base model" rifle, and probably the most likely one to be used by the average budget minded shooter. It's comes standard with a 16.5 inch SOCOM Nitride barrel (inside and out). Nitride barrells are generally cheaper than chrome lined and stainless barrells, as manufacturers use a bath process to impart an extremely hard layer to the surface of the steel. Nitriding is harder and has more lubricity than chrome and does not add inconsistency to the thickness of the bore. The CRUCIBLE model starts off at respectable MSRP of $1,299 and comes with MagPul stock and Sights, Hexmag Magazine, Ergo Grip, Single Point Bungee Sling and a Soft Case. Let me just say, you do not usually get that much product for that kind of a price at most retail gun stores.

First Impressions
My first impression of the rifle was that is was of average build quality. When you first hold the rifle, you'll notice the weight....it appears lighter than other standard AR's that I've used. In fact, everyone that I've let shoot the rifle stated how light it was and how good it felt in your hands. The lower is a Viking Armament patented receiver made in house, while the grip, adjustable stock and upper are outsourced parts. The lower and upper had a slight wiggle (which is common with AR's and easily fixable), the Ergo grip felt perfect and the slim lines of the SLR Solo hand-guard felt just right for easy weapon manipulation during movement and range drills. The weapon felt very well balanced overall and we were eager to begin the testing and evaluation process to see how well it performed. Note: It is important to note that all of the Viking Armament rifles are manufactured in their shop and sourced with 100% USA partners. 
Looking closer at the Viking Armament patented lower receiver, you'll notice the attention to detail they took on the markings and placement of the sling-ring (which is a nice touch). Also, you won't miss that the mag-well is slanted at a 45 degree angle on one side (right or left depending on your rifle configuration). This is a unique design feature difference that sets the rifle apart from the store-bought brands. The slant is there to allow a user to conduct a mag exchange from various side angles, instead of the limited straight up and down exchange of most AR mag-wells. Hypothetically, and with some additional training, this increased area could make it possible to change magazines without ever taking your eyes off your target, no matter your position. During our testing we tried various exchange positions and techniques, and honestly I found it easier to seat the magazine securely in times of high stress, especially while on the move. Admittedly this mag-well design might not be for everyone, but the option of inserting a magazine at an angle while in a tight or awkward position that would otherwise not allow a proper mag-exchange (such as while sitting in a vehicle) was an added bonus. You can still conduct normal mag-exchanges if you don't want to change your technique. Again, it was about options, and it was nice to have them in such a reasonably priced weapon.

Initial Testing and Evaluation
In the short time that we've had the rifle, we've taken it on several range days thus far, placing hundreds if not thousands of rounds downrange and it has performed flawlessly. It has never "jammed" or malfunctioned; it took all the abuse we could throw at it (and still is). In all, the rifle performed very well. More testing is commencing as this article is written, so a follow-up article may appear here shortly.
One thing we did notice during some extended firing sessions was some very minor gas blow-back, particularly near the charging handle area. Initially we thought the weapon was slightly "overlubed" near the BCG, but after further inspection we noticed that the gas ports on the bolt carrier group were angled outward a bit (almost wall-eyed), where as other BCG's are straight in. Normally these ports allow gas to blow out to the side and not back into the shooters face, but in this case, for whatever reason gas blew backwards lightly coating my eye-glasses in a film of Froglube. Could've been a simple fluke, or too much lube, but we wanted to bring it up just in case.

Closing Summary
All in all, I'd rate this a 7 out of a possible 10. I liked the rifle. It's a good firearm for a basic-level shooter, that isn't looking to spend a lot on their first or second rifle. It's light, its quality made, under $1,300 and it's only 16.5". Also, its American made.
16.5″ barrels with mid-length gas, when ported correctly, can be very reliable for everyday work but also still remain useful in a competitive setting. This rifle is probably an ideal combo rifle for a patrol officer wanting a “jack-of-all-trades” rifle for work and maybe even for some minor competition shooting. We'd recommend it for any budget minded shooter looking for a decent rifle. If you'd like more information, be sure to visit www.vikingarmament.com.
Editors Note: 
After initial testing we replaced the stock muzzle brake with a PRI MSTN Quiet Control Brake / Compensator system to reduce any felt recoil or climb of the muzzle (and to the right). The QCB has been cut from solid stainless steel bar stock for greater resistance to heat and burnout and while loud, it worked fine on this weapon system. It does not come stock with this weapon system. We just wanted to be clear about that and avoid any questions as a result of the switch.

Rifle Specs:
Color: Black Anodized Style: AR15/M4 Standard Caliber 5.56mm (223rem) (optional 6.5 Grendel, 300 AAC Blackout, 12.7x42) Barrel: 16.5in SOCOM Nitride inside and out (optional 7.5in, and 10.5in) NFA SBR paperwork required.
All rifles are offered in any Cerakote for an additional up-charge, see dealer pricing for additional information.

Friday, April 17, 2015

The "Safe-Gun" Oxymoron...

As a gun enthusiast I tend to pay close attention to the news when it comes to new products or gun laws, And like me, you've probably seen this feel-good story pop up on social media feeds a lot lately. I figure it's time to speak out against this bad idea. Allow me to explain....
The idea of a "Safe-gun" isn't a new idea as this has been around for nearly a century; we're hearing about it again because the anti-gun groups and the media are pushing it since Obama's gun laws aren't coming to fruition.
Let me just say this...this is a bad, bad,...super bad idea for soo many reasons. I'm sure this kid is doing this under the motives to save kids lives, but this product can actually kill kids more-so than a "non-smart gun". I'm betting that this young man has not had to manipulate and fire a weapon under intense or extreme stress? Think about your grip and how it changes under certain stressful conditions. Now think about the complexity and unreliability of a fingerprint scanner (and how they don't work on your iPhone half the time to unlock your device) and how that will play into a scenario where seconds count to save your life. I don't know about you, but I don't like the idea of trusting a scanner or the software running such a device with my life or the life of a family. 
Will smart-guns save lives? No, I don't believe so...guns are not iPhones and shouldn't be looked at in such a way. I see this as a VERY bad thing actually, because it will cause people to be complacent (or negligent) in gun safety practices. They will inevitably mistreat/misuse their firearms and allow themselves to feel a false sense of security. Technology fails all the time...more so than mechanical devices do. The big selling point of this 'safe-gun' idea is that "A child can’t fire the gun."...well guess what, a child can’t fire a gun that was put away properly either. A child won't handle a firearm if they are properly educated and trained by their parents. Smart guns aren't fully reliable, and I'd hate to see someone deploy it to defend themselves, only to have the firearm version of Siri say that "the device cannot be used at the moment and to try back again later".
Don't get me wrong...I commend the kid for trying to come up with a safe product to save lives, but..hell is paved with good intentions.
-Stay alert, stay alive.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Warrior Mindset: Mental Focus

In the first installment of The Warrior Mindset: Train the Brain, I attempted to define what a "warrior mindset" was as it seems there are several definitions used depending on how the term is being applied. In this write-up, I'll discuss the topic of mental focus and how it pertains to a warrior mindset, along with a couple of proven techniques to help you "train your brain" to develop the skill.
Warrior Mindset‘ is more than aggressiveness and determinationit is about over coming challenge and adversity. It’s about possessing, understanding, and being able to utilize a set of psychological and physical skills that allow someone to be effective, adaptive, and persistent. It also allows someone to use optimal decision-making, psychological techniques, physical and tactical skills learned in training and by experience."
Focusing on behavior if you want a "Warrior Mindset"
How can someone truly pay attention when they are distracted?  The answer is they really can't, not totally anyhow. Next time you are with your friends, family or co-workers, take a look around. The odds are pretty high that you will see people starring at their palms, bypassing the real world to check in on their online identity via a smartphone. The human brain is wired to adapt to what the environment around it requires for survival, but with the technological advances of the last few years it seems that we are headed in a direction where we are re-wiring how the way our brains function; essentially tuning out the environments we live in. We've already become hyper-connected slaves to technology, de-tuned and unfocused with the actual environment around us. While being connected to a powerful global communications device is great for finding a local pizza shop or gas station, it's not great at determining potential threats in your immediate environment - which is obviously not optimal for situational or spatial awareness. Human brains in their natural state however, were designed specifically for identifying threats.
Have you ever seen someone walking down the street wearing headphones while looking at their phone the entire time? Talk about living in a bubble! Some people think that they can still pay attention while doing a complicated task, but it's just not how our brains work. Human ability to pay attention or to maintain focus is a behavioral and cognitive process of selectively concentrating. Many people just chalk the behavior up to the changing times due to technology, or to the concept of multitasking. Sure, multitasking means we can get more done, but it also makes us more prone to making mistakes. It makes us more likely to miss important information and cues about our environment, and makes us less likely to analyze information, which impairs problem solving. 
Regarding the word ‘multitasking,’ cognitive, behavioral, and neurological sciences are moving toward a consensus that such a state does not actually exist in the human brain. We may make many quick ‘thoughts’ in succession, but human performance in any activity that is done without focus (often termed ‘multitasking’) is of significantly lower quality, including an absence of quality and consciousness. The word unfortunately perpetuates a false ideal of the human capacity to perform and succeed” - Annette Liska.
So, what does any of this have to do with having a "Warrior Mindset"? As we covered in The Warrior Mindset: Train the Brain, real warriors have always been encouraged to train and accumulate physical strength. But what good is strength and physical skill without a sharp focused mind to guide it? Before you can develop a 'Warrior Mindset' you will need to have a healthy mental state and you'll need to exhibit behavior that allows you to focus. As a 'Warrior' you will need to control the direction of your attention and focus your attention on your intention (try to say that three times fast). It's difficult to remain fully-focused on the task at hand in the face of distractions at times, that's just life. The human brain continuously scans our internal and external environments, even when you are focused on a particular task (to a certain extent). However, we always have distractions lurking around every corner (anyone with kids will tell you this). Some of us cannot pay attention to tasks because of thoughts, emotions, sounds, or interruptions. Fortunately, the brain is capable of instantly stopping random thoughts, unnecessary actions, and even instinctive emotions from derailing you and getting you off track. Below are two simple techniques you can start to improve your focus - on your own.
“Be Here Now”
The secret to performing at your best under pressure is to control what you’re paying attention to in the moment. If you want to be able to focus in a high stress environment, you'll need to tame your 'frenzy'. Frenzy is an emotional state where your emotions take over, making you feel fear, anger, out of control, etc. A popular phrase that is proven effective in training your brain to focus is “Be Here Now.” Corporations have used it, and school teachers have recommended this popular, yet super simple, technique to their students who find it hard to concentrate. Every time you find your mind wandering elsewhere, tell yourself, “Be Here Now.” This deceptively simple strategy is probably the most effective as it gently brings your attention back to where you want it. It allows you to clear your head of all the distractions, so that you can attain the power to focus.
ABC Technique
So how can you calm your frenzy and clear your head when there are distractions? Distractions can be anything from sounds to objects in your immediate environment that redirect your attention on to something that your brain perceives could be potentially dangerous. However, many of these distractions are false alarms. Fortunately, you can train your brain to automatically stop them from derailing your focus. To be able to do this, you must utilize your brain’s brake pedal—which can be done by using the ABC technique below.
“A” stands for awareness, which allows you to pause whatever you’re doing at the moment and recognize the distraction. Become Aware of your options: you can stop what you are doing and address the distraction, or you can let it go.
“B” stands for breathing deeply and reflecting on your options. Breathe deeply and consider your options.
“C” for choosing mindfully and deciding on what to do with the distraction—either you deal with it or dismiss it. Then Choose thoughtfully: Stop? or Go?
Where Attention goes Energy flows; Where Intention goes Energy flows!” ― James Redfield
Now, think about this, how many times did you get distracted or get your attention pulled away while reading this article? If you didn't get pulled away, excellent! If you did get distracted, I would urge you to direct your attention to the techniques above. One thing humans can do that some other animals cannot due is direct their conscious focus. Remaining fully-focused on the task at hand in the face of distractions demands that you control what you pay attention to. That is the secret to performing at your best and developing a true Warrior Mindset.
Stay alert. Stay alive.

This article originally appeared in the Combat Trade Craft blog  and is re-posted here with the permission.

© 2014 The Ballistic Blog

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Situational and Spatial Awareness

Have you ever had a conversation with someone, only to have them look at someone or something directly behind you or off in the background of your environment, but they still appear to be maintaining their focus point and listening to what you are saying? Most people would probably say that this is an example of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, but in reality it could be a heightened sense of awareness - especially if they have worked at acquiring the skill.  The term 'Situational Awareness' has become a fairly common term within the self-defense and firearms training industry. In the simplest of terms, Situational Awareness is being more aware of your surroundings. But in many cases, that is not enough. Many martial arts and defensive-firearm schools have realized this and are now attempting to teach students techniques to help improve their overall awareness and reaction times during a threat or hostile situation.
Situation awareness is the perception of environmental elements with respect to time or space, the comprehension of their meaning, and the projection of their status after some variable has changed, such as time, or some other variable, such as a predetermined event.
There is another theoretical framework of 'awareness' that is equally as important, Spatial awareness. Before we can begin to understand the concepts of distance, time, speed or depth, we must first learn to understand how other things that are within our environment affect our ability to move or how they position ourselves so as to be the least disruptive to the environment around us. Spatial awareness is just that, an organised knowledge of objects in relation to oneself in a given space, more so than just being aware of other people and things (i.e. Situational Awareness).  
Spatial awareness comes naturally to most of us as children, but as we grow older and we become complacent within our society and environments, we tend to struggle with using the skill. Spatial awareness is both an innate and an acquired skill that needs to be exercised on a regular basis to boost brain activity and improve understanding of the world around you. The development of proper spatial awareness involves an understanding of how the human body moves (i.e. biomechanics) and an understanding of the relationship of objects when there is a change in position. It can therefore be said that spatial awareness is also the ability to see and understand multiple objects in relation to each other and to oneself. This is a complex cognitive skill that people should develop into a daily routine if they want to fully embrace a true self-defense mindset.
When someone has demonstrated the ability to understand where things are in relation to oneself, that cognitive action is what takes the concept of awareness to the next level, as it not only is the perception of your environment, but also the objects within it and how they may interact with you or others. A good example of someone with a solid understanding of situational awareness is when a person sits in a restaurant purposely facing the door to allow themselves the ability to scan for suspicious people entering. In effect, this person is generally aware of his environment and any changes that may occur within it.  Now, someone who has a full understanding of spatial awareness might take a moment before even entering the restaurant to visually scan through the windows to take mental notes of the available exits, the location of possible barriers, suspicious objects, suspicious people, etc.
Members of our armed forces and law enforcement community must work hard to develop heightened awareness levels to perform the essential functions of their daily duties, if they didn't, really bad things might happen more often than they already do. With that being said, it's also a good idea for the average citizen to work on developing these cognitive skills, as the Police won't always be around to help keep you or your environment safe. Plus, it feels great to know that you can become your own personal security agent.
The real question is, can you develop this awareness without being constantly paranoid? The answer is Yes. There is one thing that can be done to help improve both situational and spatial awareness - and that is continuous conditioning and training. What do I mean by conditioning or training? I don't mean enrolling into the next best tacticool-school to learn a fancy skill. It's really more simple than that. All you need to do is slow down and look around, process your environment before you dive into it. That's really all there is to it. When most people enter or leave a building, they usually fixate on their destination, basically focusing on getting from point A to point B without grasping what happens in between or what objects are nearby. If you want to try and boost your spatial awareness skills, simply slow down...take some time every day to look around. Make a habit of it. Define your path, take note of what is around you. You’ll be surprised not only by how much you discover, but by how you can relate to areas more effectively with physical elements, conceptual correlations and senses.
Stay alert. Stay alive.

This article originally appeared in the Combat Trade Craft blog  and is re-posted here with the permission.

© 2014 The Ballistic Blog

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Tex Creek Knife Review

TOPSKnives Tex Creek
TOPSKnives Tex Creek
The Tex Creek blade, by TOPSKNIVES is a tribute knife to the men and women who hunt and fish in the Tex Creek area in Southeast, Idaho. This wildlife management area, which includes 2 national forests, is home to an abundance of diverse wildlife and is accessible starting about 10 miles from the TOPSKNIVES facility. Open range, high rugged mountains, waterways and large forests provide the hunter and fisherman a variety of diverse terrain to acquire: elk, bear, mountain lion, wolf, moose, pheasant, turkey, quail, rabbit, duck, goose, steel-head and salmon. Being that the Tex Creek area is so close to TOPSKNIVES facility, this allows their designers and knife makers’ the ability to field test in their product in their own backyard.
About the Knife
As with all of the TOPSKNIVES blades I've seen, the overall quality of the blade is superb. The grip on the Tex Creek is a very nice black Micarta with a contoured handle for better gripping. The darkened Micarta scales are screwed onto the handle and a large cord holder is accentuated at the back of the handle. The designer, Leo Espinoza designed and built the Tex Creek to have a positive grip that could be used for extended periods of time if needed.
The 7.1 oz Tex Creek comes with a “Black River Washed” clip point style, full tang, 3/16” thick 1095 high carbon steel (56-58 HRC) blade. The overall length of the knife is 9” but the blade is about 4” long, which is just large enough to carry every day and not feel as though you have a huge blade on your side. The uncoated blade finish clearly shows the heat treatment line along the blade edge. The darkened-steel pattern is uniquely different on every blade, making each one a one-of-a-kind. This finish really provides a nice broken in or rustic look to the blade and gives it that unique and ready to use look. The Clip point blade, in my opinion, was a good design choice as it gives the Tex Creek user a bit more control of the blade when using the knife. Clip points are great blade styles for an “all-purpose” knife. Which is exactly what I would call the Tex Creek, a well-rounded, quality built, good looking, all-purpose blade.
Pictured, Creed McCaslin - CEO Full Spectrum Defense
Pictured, Creed McCaslin - CEO Full Spectrum Defense
If you’re thinking of using the Tex Creek as a defensive blade, you may want to consider sharpening the back edge of the clip point to make a second edge. While this certainly isn't needed, it could help improve the function of the tip even more.
The knife does come with a traditional looking leather sheath, which at first I was not very fond of. It’s made well, and of good quality – but I’m just not a fan of leather as I normally prefer Kydex. However, I have been carrying the Tex Creek now for several weeks in the leather sheath, and I must say that it is very comfortable to wear. There is no real retention however, and for some that may be a concern.
All in all, this is a truly great knife; one that literally could be used in almost any environment. Priced at $179 MSRP, it would make a great Christmas gift for any avid hunter and outdoors enthusiast without totally emptying your bank account too.
"This is a knife that performs with excellence in the field and looks and feels like an old trusted friend, anywhere that you go." - Leo Espinoza
  •  O/A Length: 9"
  • Blade Length: 4 3/16" Thickness: 3/16"
  • Steel: 1095 HighCarbon Steel
  • Handle: Black Canvas Micarta
  • Blade Finish: Black River Wash
  • Sheath: Leather
  • Weight: 7.1oz
  • Weight w/ Sheath: 9.8oz
  • Designed by: Leo Espinoza

Keith Sipmann Co-Owner of Full Spectrum Defense, LLC., US Army Veteran, NRA Certified Firearms Instructor, Certified MCCCD Adjunct Faculty, Freelance Photographer, Firearms/Survival Enthusiast, Writer for Western Shooting Journal Magazine and Publisher and Chief Editor of TheBallisticBlog.com.