Coming Soon: Benchmade Proper 318
Joshua Wussow 10.26.17
Hot on the heels of one of their most surprising successes, Benchmade has announced a followup to their 319 Proper folding knife. This latest entry, dubbed the 318, has a clip point blade in place of the original’s friendly sheepsfoot design. This second slipjoint is slated for an early-November 2017 release, with preorders currently available on KnifeCenter and BladeHQ. Prices appear to be hovering in the $115 neighborhood.
Like the 319, this new version is an entry into the hotly-contested “Modern Traditional” market. There’s no locking mechanism to be found, though Benchmade has included a half-stop. The 318 is just a touch smaller than its predecessor, featuring a 0.04 drop in two aspects – weight (2.28 oz vs. 2.32 oz) and blade length (2.82” vs. 2.86”). The Proper’s cutting edge will be wrought in CPM-S30V, with a French-style nail nick for two-hand deployment. Overall open length reaches 6.65”, with a closed measurement of 3.85”. This is a knife that should disappear in the pocket, especially considering its 0.4” handle thickness.
Speaking of handles, Benchmade is switching things up a bit with the 318. While the red G-10 is still available, this knife’s micarta cladding will feature a brown coloration. This latter option looks to be quite grippy, and I’m looking forward to sampling it in-hand.
Of particular interest are the fasteners. While most traditional knives rely on pinned construction, Benchmade has assembled the Proper with torx screws. This will allow takedown enthusiasts like me to disassemble and service the 318, which should help with overall longevity. I’m interested to see what sort of bushings or bearings (if any) Benchmade uses in this non-locking design.
I plan to take a closer look at this knife in the near future. Stay tuned for first impressions once we’ve been Proper-ly introduced.