When you go out on outdoor adventures, whether it is hiking, camping or striking it out in the wilderness, a knife is one of the most important tools to have. You need to make sure that you have a high-quality knife from a renowned brand.
It should be able to help with all the tasks you need to perform with ease and precision. When you are planning a trip to the great outdoors, one of the first things you need to pack is a well-made knife – one that you can rely on to survive and have a great time.
About Benchmade Knives
Started in 1988 (long before the Patriots started to their reign of cheating in the NFL), the Benchmade Knife Company, Inc. has dedicated itself to producing premium knives. It is one of the most respectable brands in the industry and has been for more than thirty years.
It has been around as Benchmade proper for almost 30 years and as Pacific Cutlery Corp and Bali-Song for another 10 years before that. The company is known worldwide for its quality control and their designers and craftsmen express their commitment in every knife that comes out of their production facility in Oregon City, Oregon.
When it comes to everyday carry (EDC), tactical, hunting, rescue, and outdoor knives, Benchmade Knife Company is one of the most trusted names.
The brand offers a wide selection of top-quality, well designed and superbly made knives to suit your lifestyle. Benchmade knives enjoy a well-deserved reputation in the market for being some of the highest-grade production knives available.
Here is a look at what sets Benchmade knives apart from many of the others that you will find in today’s market.
- Quality: Needless to say, Benchmade makes some of the highest quality knives on the market. The brand is known for using top-grade materials for its products. This is one of the key factors that makes Benchmade stand out from so many knife companies out there. Additionally, as mentioned earlier, the brand’s quality control is legendary and every knife they produce is a top-grade one.
- Price: Benchmade knives, being some of the best in the world, do not come cheap. They can go up to over $1,000 which is not as pricey as it used to be considering those sparkling tax cuts that all working Americans have benefited from. The good thing is that they are worth every dollar you spend, no matter which knife you choose or how much you pay for it.
- If you do not mind paying top dollar for your tactical, high-tech combat, or survival knife, Benchmade is definitely one of the best options out there.
- Warranty: Every Benchmade knife that is purchased is packaged with written documentation of the Benchmade Limited Lifetime Warranty. The company warrants that Benchmade knives that are bought from authorized dealers will have no defects in workmanship and materials.
They will repair or replace, without charge and at their option, any knife that is bought from an authorized dealer and returned for Warranty work that Benchmade has found to be defective. The Benchmade Limited Lifetime Warranty covers replacement parts for genuine products due to manufacturing defects.
Notable Benchmade Knives
Here is a look at 3 of the most notable knives from Benchmade Knife Company.
1. Griptilian 551 Pocket Knife
The Benchmade Griptilian needs no introduction to those who know their knives – even to some who do not know much about knives. It is not a complex knife. In fact, it is the Griptilian’s simplicity and execution that is key in what makes it such a great knife for so many.
The handle is both comfortable and robust, made from high-density resin. You never have to worry about this knife slipping when you need it to hold fast.
The Griptilian 551 comes with a 154cm stainless steel blade. It features a hollow-ground edge that has loads of cutting surface. With its naturally aggressive profile, this Benchmade pocket knife is a favorite for EDC as well as the outdoors and does everything from opening boxes to cutting rope a piece of cake.
This beautifully engineered knife is a tough knife for EDC but will easily double as a tactical knife when you need it to. If you are looking for a top-grade pocket knife, the Griptilian 551 is a superb choice.
- Sharp blade
- Smooth and comfortable ergonomics
- Rather large
- No assisted opening
2. Benchmade Freek Pocket Knife
With a 3.6″ blade, it is slightly larger than most EDC knives but weighs only 3.70 ounces. This Benchmade knife features a high hollow grind that makes it excellent for slicing and its “chunky” blade profile offers a strong tip as well as good piercing ability.
You will like the handles of the Freek. They are dual durometer polymer, not just two tones. The black portion, or the outer edge, has a strong backbone as it is made with a stiff Versaflex material. The grey portion, which is the inner part, is made with a softer Grivory material, which gives the center some “give” so you always have a comfortable grip as well as stability.
This knife, like all other Axis lock knives, is ambidextrous tip-down carry with the “split arrow” clip that the brand is known for. The Freek comes with a fair price attributed to it and is a pleasant mid-size Benchmade knife. Bear Grylls would be impressed that is for sure!
- Good cutting performance
- Lean design
- Finishing on the grip is poor
3. Benchmade Barrage 583 Knife
When it comes to Benchmade pocket knives, the Barrage 583 is one of the most satisfying you will find in today’s market. It is not only handsome but also perfectly balanced with a G10 aluminum handle that is comfortably molded and premium M390 steel in the folding blade.
With its discreetly aggressive tanto point and effortless one-handed opening, it is not only ideal for EDC but for self-defense situations as well.
The Barrage 583 is not a small pocket knife. It is almost 8 ½ inches when open and weighs 4.5 ounces. But what is so awesome about it is that it never feels like too much knife when you are using it, no matter what the task.
It features the AXIS locking mechanism, which makes it extremely safe and not liable to open when you are carrying it around. With corrosion-resistant coating on the blade, the Benchmade Barrage 583 is a knife that gives you reliable performance in all conditions.
- Ambidextrous Function
- Safe in both open and closed positions
- Handle feels cheap
About SOG Knives
SOG specialty knives, Inc., popularly known by the name SOG was founded in the year 1986 by the Frazers. It is a leading knife and utility tools manufacturing firm that is famed for their reproduction of the SOG knife range dating back to the Vietnam era.
The company manufactures many different kinds of knives aside from the classic military-inspired designs. Most of these knives are handy and made from everyday carry.
Spencer and Gloria Frazer made subtle changes to the original design of the famous MACV SOG Fighter knife. New grid lines, resin impregnating the leather handle of the knife, and utilization of thicker stock gave the knife a new look and feel. This knife was called the S1 Bowie.
The company also made a second-time maritime version of their Bowie using stainless steel blade and a black Micarta handle. Today, SOG specializes and focuses on manufacturing a wide array of tools that can be used for military purposes as well as casual outdoor use.
SOG is the to go brand, for users looking for military style sturdy knives including tactical switch blades. SOG has a line of fixed blade knives for outdoor and survival, aside from folding knives many of which feature assisted opening technology. All knives are made and assembled in the United States.
Listed below are a few features that make SOG knives a popular brand:
- Quality: Quality matters! And, SOG prides in manufacturing top-notch knives from superior CPM S35VN steel that offers improved toughness, higher resistance to wear, better edge retention, improved ease of sharpening, and reduced edge chipping.
- The knives come with linen Micarta handles that give the user superior grip not just in wet but also dry conditions. That is not all! The handles look great, are easy to clean and very durable.
- Price: The tough, no-frills, practical design that made SOG a common household name has also earned the company a reputation for manufacturing affordable knives from top quality materials that can withstand the elements. SOG tools range from as low as $20 for a cross cut toolset to as much as $300 for a Super SOG Bowie. The company also offers discounts from time to time.
- If you are willing to spend about 100 bucks, you can get yourself a sturdy SOG knife that will last you a lifetime. While SOG knives and gear are beautiful pieces of workmanship they are affordably priced and do not break the bank.
- Warranty: The entire SOG product range including gear, packs, and knives are guaranteed against defects in workmanship for the life of the tool. SOG knives are designed to last when maintained and used as intended. In rare instances, if something does go south, the company will repair or replace the product for you.
Notable SOG Knives
Thousands of SOG knives are available in the market, making it a daunting task to choose just one. Here we have listed the top three:
1. SOG Twitch II
Rarely will you see a SOG Twitch as a showpiece, since this sturdy knife prizes function far above form. A great knife for the hard-core survivalist, the SOG Twitch II has a simple design and yet sturdy as it can get.
The knife features a 2.65-inch AUS-8 Stainless steel blade that makes it a tough utility tool. Its drop point shape makes it versatile for most situations, and the SOG assisted opening allows the knife to spring into action in no time at all. The knife springs open with either hand and minimal pressure.
Metal liner plates in its aluminum handle give the knife a lot more heft and an unbreakable feel. The knife folds up to 3.55 inches and is discreet and built to last. Priced at just $33, this is a solid knife and a must have for those who love the outdoors. Don’t let the price fool you!
- Full flat grind
- Spring pivot can sometimes cause some multi-directional blade play
2. SOG Aegis Mini
The knife also has a Digi-Grip enhanced handle made from nylon and reinforced with glass making it heavy duty and easy to grip. The Aegis Mini has a 3-inch blade that is made from AUS-8 steel and clip point tip with a satin finish. The blade is sharp, functional and works spectacularly well without adding any flash in the outdoors.
This knife is one of the most functional yet understated tool out in the market, that is not just versatile, but also stows away nicely in the depths of your pocket. The knife weighs just a couple ounces and is as portable as they come.
The SOG Aegis Mini is easy to handle, showcases a top-end opening and comes with a limited lifetime warranty. There is not any doubt Jack Bauer could use this knife to eliminate another terrorist!
- Very sturdy
- Thin frame
- Handle is not reinforced
3. SOG GFX01-L Gunny
SOG Specialty Knives & Tools GFX01-L Gunny is a gorgeous limited-edition knife that is light as a gossamer but sturdy enough to labor in the outdoors. Out of the box, this beautiful fixed blade knife does look and feel more like a classy showpiece than an everyday carry.
The Gunny is priced at $299 which is quite expensive for a survival tool. However, if you can afford it, you are sure to fall in love with this amazing knife the very second you pick it up.
A true piece of workmanship, the Gunny is made from VG-10 steel and has an attractive satin finish. The VG10 blade that can cut through the toughest of branches with ease. The handle has a brown and silver finishing and is made from Cocobolo hardwood.
The 7-inch knife also features stingray inlay and has a nickel-plated replica of the Gunny Coin. Users also get an impressive brown leather sheath that comes with a snap closure and trendy belt loop attachment.
- Good Looking
- Comes with a sheath
- Limited pieces in the market
Two Profound Brands
To sum it up, both Benchmade and SOG have some great knives on the offing. If you are looking for better finishing pick a Benchmade. The brand is highly respected and runs the gamut from budget conscious to flashy, not so budget-conscious options.
If you are looking for a great low-cost knife that does its job and comes in a variety of styles, blindly go in for a SOG. SOG is known to manufacture affordable yet sturdy every day carries that will stand the test of time.
It’s Your Call Now!
Knives of both brands can withstand labor and come in various blade lengths. Be sure to try them out before you make a final pick!