SO I was kinda just minding my own business, looking at knife pics, when I ran into another over sized knife with a little too much on it’s mind:

The Raven

The Raven

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Now much like the last target of scrutiny, this blade has also fallen victim to extraneous design “features” that attempt to solve problems that do not exist while at the same time seriously compromising the utility of the blade. In this blade, I’d have to say it is a pretty heinous compromise as well. In fact, many times more so than the last.

Basically what we have here is a big knife. With a blowgun built into the grip. Seems like a good idea in theory right? A survival knife with a blow gun? Sure. I mean if you get stranded somewhere, the three (yes, only 3) darts would come in handy for hunting dinner right? After all, if you run out of darts, you could always make more out of local materials right? You could even offer a local poisonous toad a back rub with said darts and you’d have a winner.

Which, incidentally, always begs the question, if the poison doesn’t break down in the cooking process or something, aren’t you eventually also poisoning yourself when you hunt your dinner with poisoned projectiles? Some food for thought… But I digress. My point is, a blow gun would seem like a nice addition to a survival blade. Or is it? Well, unfortunately I’d have to respond, at least in this case, with a resounding NO!

You see, in order to get this blowgun into the handle, they had to do away with a very, very, important part of any well constructed survival knife. The blade tang. And I mean all of it. Look at this thing. Can’t be more than an inch of tang (if that) going into that skeletonized handle. I’m sorry but that just doesn’t work for me.

Actually, many commercially available “survival knives” make the same mistake. They replace a proper grip with a hollow tube that contains all sorts of cool things like fishing wire, a compass, mirror, flint, etc. But what people don’t realize is how much that design compromises the strength of the blade. Yeah, you have all this cool stuff, but your actual knife isn’t worth jack squat because it has no tang, and thus no strength, and it’s gonna break the first time you hack at wayward branch with it… πŸ™

Survival indeed. I’d much prefer a solid well constructed knife, over the fancy, schmancy fishing line, compass, etc. They are nice things to have, yes, but not at the expense of a good strong knife. All you need to survive in most places (barring extreme weather conditions) is a reliable cutting implement. The rest you can usually get from what’s around you. Bah. Ok, ok, fine. I’ll stop with the ranting.

Getting back to my original point. This knife is a dud. It’s black and cool looking and all, but you have a blade that is effectively attached to a perforated black grip by a really short nub of steel. The grip and the blades will not stay friends for long under duress. It’s an Epic Phail waiting to happen.

In fact I think the blow gun is probably the only good feature of this whole deal. At least with that you can do some target soda can shooting with the darts in your back yard…

The Raven – [Collectors Edge]