KnifeTests.com: The Legend Returns
Tony Sculimbrene 12.09.13
Source: Flickr via Sam Agnew
I like knives. You probably like knives, otherwise why would you be reading this? And if you’re anything like me, you probably also like blowing stuff up. You can claim that it’s all scientific and engineer-y, but really there is an unstoppable impulse deep down that likes to see things go boom. It is probably half the reason why I love the Slingshot Channel and why even to this day, everyone likes to watch videos of controlled demolition of buildings.
So what do you get when you combine these two things? You get the knife tests done on KnifeTests.com. For the uninitiated, these were videos (using mostly fixed blades) that demonstrated in graphic and destructive ways the limitations of knives. Punitively they were about “science,” about “product testing,” and “informing the consumer,” but in reality it was a guy in a hockey mask doing things to knives that make Lynn Thompson and his blue jean murdering videos look positively wimpy.
After a few videos you’ll check to see if knives are covered by the Geneva Convention. This was seriously destructive stuff. The dead giveaway that this was more about blowing stuff up than anything else? The “screaming skull” ranking system for knives. Oh, and the hockey mask and heavy metal.
For all the theater and wanton destruction, there was a lot of value in what KnifeTest did. It showed you in real ways the limitations of knives. And even if you were never the going to push your knives to the limit, it showed you what could happen if you absolutely had to. Here’s the thing – why not buy stuff that can handle the crazy tests if you can afford it? Why not get the best bang for your buck (and in some cases its a literal bang, or crash, or smash).
Unfortunately, a while back KnifeTest’s YouTube channel went black and all of the videos fell off YouTube. It was a shame. The information was very reliable, even though there was some unabashed Busse fanboyism mixed in there. (I am not critical of Busse fanboyism, but complaining because I wanted to be the biggest Busse fanboy out there.) It, like some of the resources from Joe Talmadge (such as the knife steel info, found here) was as close to reference materials for knives as there was on the web. Knife knuts everywhere, including me, hung their heads in a moment of silence when KnifeTest went dark.
But it is time to look up again. All of KnifeTest’s videos are coming back. AllOutdoor, recognizing the resources (and entertainment) that they were, purchased all of them and the URL and will be bringing them back and releasing them one at a time, starting with the epic and controversial destruction test of the Busse Nuclear Fusion Battle Mistress. The Battle Mistress is one of the most sought after choppers on the planet, and seeing the steps necessary to take this monster down is the knife equivalent of watching a 19th century whaling ship take a sperm whale. It’s an epic battle pitting crazy man in a hockey mask against one of the greatest brute knives ever made.
It’s pretty exciting that the videos of epic blades being epicly destroyed are coming back, and hopefully it will be something that you will use and enjoy. Over the years I watched almost all of the videos and read a lot of the content. I enjoyed them, and at a certain point I realized that I was never going to buy most of these blades. But there was something unmistakably cool about watching someone blow up a $500 fixed blade. Its pretty simple: knives + blowing stuff up + useful consumer information = awesome.
It Gets Better
This is where I become like the master of sales, Ron Popeil and tell you: BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE!!!
See, KnifeTest and its great videos are coming back, but they will have written introductions by the one and only Cliff Stamp. Cliff is one of the nicest, most knowledgeable knife guys in the entire world. He has books, literally books, about how he sharpens his knives–the tools, the angles, everything. His site, found here, is great with almost clinical-trial level knife reviews. His YouTube channel, with its Knife Challenges, is a great and wonderful learning tool for knife knuts. It’s safe to say that Cliff is knife crazy. Here is a really great lesson that he gave me on the Gear Geeks Live podcast. His scientific approach is a huge breath of fresh air in a community that has a lot of opinions tethered to precious few facts. Here is Cliff’s CATRA TCC data (and here is more about why this stuff is important).
Cliff, as most people with strong and intelligent opinions, is not without detractors. He got booted from Blade Forums (see here) and he made a hilarious parody of YouTube reviewers. He called out ZT for burning their Elmax on their knives, something that others, over time, came to recognize. This is just par for the course for Cliff, whose potent combination of knowledge, opinion, and sardonic wit don’t play well with some. I recommend taking all of these “controversies” with a grain of salt. Just sit back and enjoy the stream of great content.
So there you have it. KnifeTests.com is returning, and intros for the videos will be written by the one of the most knowledgeable and controversial knife knuts on the planet. Watch ’em. You’ll learn a lot. You’ll guffaw at the wanton destruction. You might even send off an angry missive or two to the illustrious Mr. Stamp, but one thing is absolutely for sure: this is great combination for the knife community and folks interesting in gear in general.
And let me carry the Ron Popeil thing one more step to drive home a point.
How much will you pay for this awesome content and colorful commentary? Not $20, not $10, not even $5. All of this infotainment will come to you for the low, low price of nothing. That’s right, nothing at all. So get ready. A legend is back.