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I'm thinking I'm going to buy that Cold Steel Master Hunter in San Mai.
I can't say from personal experience though if San Mai is superior - only from what I've read over the years and input from other folks. Sure sounds good.
Cold Steel company - I like 'em based on other products of theirs I've had and their service. But the owner is disliked by some because he... let's say, he's not shy about promoting himself and his products. Obviously that p.o's some people.
Doesn't bother me though.
Let us know how that Trail Master works out for you!
 

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VG1, the center layer of san mai is slightly behind aus-8. So that is a lot of money for a non premium steel, with a 420 covering. For the price of a cold steel that should be d-2 in the center. If you can find the old carbon 5 you will have a much better knife. San mai was to cut costs, but the price to us did not drop.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I know I have read that the TM knives are too small for true camp fire chores cutting firewood. Where an ax would be better and it is too big for game processing, better knives for skinning, gutting ect.
Cold steel sure has made some wild claims about no other knive company matching there knives for sharpness and or strength, or some such claim of which I am not sure is true. Well I do have my share of knives and many are cold steel brand. Two master hunters an SRK, recon tanto, many roach belly, canadian belt knives and a few folders to go along. Might as well add one more to the list, when it comes in the mail.
Thanks for the replies
 

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No folly there. As long as you get enjoyment out of it money was not wasted.
BTW survival knives don't need to be big. A good knife like this http://www.ratcutlery.com/rc-5.htm can be used for most situations without having a big blade slinging around to cut the user. You can use a hunk of wood hitting the spine of the blade to chop down a tree. That way the blade wont slip out of the hand if slinging like a machete. That tm should have a thick enough spine to do that.
 

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Man, that Rat RC5 is a practical looking knife. But $150? Too much for this ol' boy.
Also, I'm not sure I want a knife with a picture of a skull on it.
It'd be tough to come up with the cash (<$100), but how about this one?
Same concept at the Rat RC5, but a little more affordable, US-made, better steel?, LEATHER sheath, and looks better to my eye.
http://www.knifesupply.com/eshop/10Expand.asp?ProductCode=BA131MGC
It IS lighter, .17 thick instead of the RC5's .25,and4.5 ozs. to the RC5's 16 (that light weight could be a good thing!) but seems tough enough.
 

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Arier said:
Good knife but the spine needs to be straight on a small survival knife that you are going to use as chopping. That one has a swept spine to aid in slicing, be a better skinning/boning knife.
Becker makes a skulless drop point similar to the rat pattern.
http://www.knknives.com/product/KBBK2
Interesting. Good looking knife. But you mean batoning? Not chopping, right?
Both the Bark River and the RC5 seem to have mostly straight spines ahead of the grip, but I do see the Bark River is curved some, handle to blade.
Does it really make that much difference?
I do need more time in the field.
 

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The blade is put on the tree at a 45 degree angle and the spine struck with a piece of wood. Then alternated to below at 45 degrees much like you would swing an axe. But the blade stays stationary. The wood is used to drive the blade. Angled spines will send some of the energy away into the hand instead of the tree. Blade can also be used in same fashion to split wood with the wood driving the knife through chopping off kindling.

Most knives do not have a knob on the end like a machete to strike a sapling and retain in hand safely. It is safer to strike the knife to prevent injury. A knife will never replace a kukri or axe but good to carry one that can improvise for light chopping work in an emergency situation. I carry a rat-3 daily for that purpose. And a rat-5 when afield. A good knife with around an 1/8" spine will hold up to the abuse of striking with wood. Some strike with rocks as well. I can't afford to replace the knives so never tried it.
 

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I have many CS knives and am continually impressed with them. Even there "cheap" line are well made and work perfectly. I think you will be very satisfied. I have a trail master and LOVE it!!

CW
 

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I'd heard they were going out of business. Anyone else heard this?
 

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not heard about them going out of business. But if their prices keep as high
as they are, it may not be long. I quit buying them when they started being made in Taiwan.
Most of them now look like fantasy knives to me. IMO they are not near the quality
they used to be. I have several old ones and do like them but quality was much different then.
 

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I think you will be very happy with it 45north. Probably close to 15-20 years ago I bought one of the then new SanMia master tanto. I still have it and out of all the knifes I have had before or since it is by far the sharpest sucker in the collection, a few strokes on the Sharpmaker and you can shave your face with that blade. The Tanto is one wicked blade but not real practical. SanMia and the Trail Master should make a great combination! Wana trade ;)
 

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I'm not real fond of the fact that they're made in Taiwan now, but I've had a few of the Voyagers and they've always been fabulous knives. I lost one while hunting several years ago. I think that someone in camp stole it out of my pack, honestly. But I haven't seen it since then, so...

Get on YouTube, Cold Steel has a ton of videos showing the testing of the knives. No matter what any other person or company says, I've NEVER seen another factory knife company that will put stuff like that on video to show consumers. The only people that I know that are willing to put on "shows" like that are some of the custom makers, but there are only a few of them too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Well I did finally get it in the mail. It has a nice balance to it. And it does shave dry hair right off my arm. Some of there stuff may be made in taiwan but this knife says made in japan right on the blade. Not sure it's worth what they were asking for it. But I have wanted one for 15 years or more. I'll have to watch Crocodile dundee tonight.

In time I will report on how it turns out.

Thanks for the replys
 

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I have a collection of CS knives that I got about 10 yrs ago. My Trailmaster is made of the older Carbon V steel and it is superb. Keeps a perfect edge. I carry mine afield and it has done everything from clearing light brush for a blind, to dispatching a pig with a lung piercing. I have used it to field dress a deer on one occasion but it was a chore because the blade is so long. Overall I have not been disappointed with the Trailmaster. Hope you enjoy yours.
 
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