The Latest Prototype

Grizzly Brown

Grizzly Black

Grizzly & Boar

Grizzly Sheath

We have a new prototype on test at the moment and I must say that I am very impressed. It is a hybrid of a Bushcraft Knife and a full blown Survival knife and it has been performing faultlessly.

It is made from 6mm (1/4″) thick High Carbon Tool Steel and there will likely be two different blade variants, one as a simple satin finish and the other with a black traction coating. The blades will naturally have a full Scandi Grind making them super easy to maintain and sharpen. There is also a small depression/cut out on the back of the blade that is designed to make striking a fire steel easier.

They are handled with removable Micarta Scales that a very ergonomically shaped to make them super comfortable for prolonged use. Many Survival type knives like ESEE simply make them from slab sided Micarta.

The knife is essentially the same design as the very successful Boar Bushcraft Knife but put on a steroid regime as it is 50% thicker, the blade is deeper and the handle is also slightly thicker.

We haven’t made any final decisions on the sheath yet but the most likely combination will have a Kydex sheath as standard with the ability to upgrade to have an additional, fully ambidextrous, US made cordura product that has an additional fire kit packed in the front pouch.

I welcome any feedback you may have as we haven’t gone into full production yet, we are simply testing and tweeking at the moment. The main design is very unlikely to change as it has been performing so well, even in chopping tests!

***One thing I would like to add is concerning the angle of the Scandi grind. The proportion percentages are exactly the same as The Boar. What I mean by that is that it is made of 50% thicker steel and the grind has been increased to make it 50% deeper. It may not show up well in the images but you are talking millimetres and with the Prototype being a much deeper blade it is quite deceptive in the picture.***

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Categories: Bushcraft & Survival Equipment, Knives & Tools | 47 Comments

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47 thoughts on “The Latest Prototype

  1. Paul Hichens

    Good looking knife spec sounds good also, would be curious to see how it performs against the main competition, like the f1, bravo 1, esee 3/4 etc.

    Also it would be nice to see multiple buying options…..
    s30v steel for those who live near or on water, high carbon for the bushcraft types, different handles/different steels/different sheaths.

    Variety is the spice of life! :mrgreen:

    • It is intended to be a serious rival for knives like an ESEE 5 as it has very similar dimensions. I think we already have it beat in a couple of areas as the handle on this prototype is much more comfortable and the grind is a proper Scandi.
      As for a bit more variety it will surely follow, we obviously can’t do everything in one go so we will start with a good all round Survival/Bushcraft knife with Micarta handles and progress from there. I have looked into a couple of very tough stainless steels and it is always a possibility for the future with more handle variations to follow.
      We will be offering the blades on their own as well so people can handle them how they see fit.

  2. gary

    hi
    the knife looks great, and is definatley something i would be interested in.. i have one small concern that from the pictures supplied, the scandi grind looks far too low for the thickness of the blade. for optimum cutting i would imagine (although admittedly im no expert)that the grind should be higher as some of the thicker blades with a low single bevel that i have used have not been that effective in my own experience.

    this is by no-way a critizism as i think what you are doing looks great
    thanks for listening
    gary

    • I know what you mean and we did consider it. I have seen various knives with higher grinds and also secondary bevels but after some testing this gave a great balance between cutting ability and toughness. This is a prototype and we will see how it progresses but at the moment it performs well in all sorts of tests, even chopping and very heavy tasks and the edge holds up very well.

  3. Harv Stembridge

    Looks really nice, and I will be interested in purchasing when they get into production.
    I cant stress highly enough to put as much thought and effort into the sheath as the knife.
    Kydex for sure, give as much versatility as possible to the carry and mounting options, are there correctly positioned holes to allow tek-lok mounting, can it be carried horizontally without using a tek-lok, will it molle mount, dont restrict customers to having to buy the extra nylon pouch just to carry a fire steel, I cant tell you how many knives I have rejected simply because, when I spend in excess of a hundred or so quid I dont expect to have to buy a custom sheath to gain full functionality and versatility. in my opinion one of the best sheaths in terms of build quality and options is the esee 5, if yours can match that, with a couple of tweaks then, you will surely have a winner.
    All the best.
    Harv

    • We do have multiple sheath options on the table. We have already rejected 2 and the front runner is the Cordura model (in the picture) as it also has a front pouch for additional kit, will mount on just about anything and has a Kydex insert for additional security. We have a full Kydex model being made as well which we will get next week and I will post additional pictures as things progress.
      In the end we are 99% sure that we will offer 2 different sheath options, 1 Cordura model and 1 Kydex model so that people can pick and choose or have both.

  4. Tom

    I think that this blank is perfect for what you have in mind. I’m not sure about the asthetics of the handle material and I also think that a cordura sheath always make a knife look cheap. Hey but that’s just me!

    • The sheath will be a US made product which is super high quality. It is not a cheap Chinese knock off. There will also likely be a Kydex variant available.

  5. David Wigmore

    Hi

    A handle in fossilised mammoth ivory would be nice. I always think of man hunting these huge animals and making fire, seems fitting really.

    regards

    David Wigmore

  6. Phil

    It looks just the ticket. How much do you think it will go for? Oh and can I have a go at testing it?

    • It will be in 3 different colours and we expect the top model (with a cordura sheath with Kydex insert and accessories) to be around £150. There will also likely be a variant with a Kydex sheath that will be a little less (around £135). We haven’t completely finalised the costs yet but those are what is currently projected.

  7. Dennis

    It looks nice but I don’t know about the grind. It looks a bit too steep. It doesn’t seem much higher than on the Boar. If it’s 6mm thick I think the grind should be higher. The problem I had with my ESEE-5.. It was not very efficient. It has this thick saber grind, it was relatively thick behind the edge and heavy. In years of use, I sharpened it at an acuter angle, I even removed the shoulders and convexed the secondary bevel.. And after that the performance was much much better than before but still, the BushProwler I bought (I think about 2-3 years ago?) at your store completely destroyed the ESEE-5 and I sold it without regrets. Do you know the sharpening angle on this new design?

    Ps: Orange G10 scales would be nice.

    • I did consider all sorts of grinds but still settled for a scandi as it is so easy to maintain a razor sharp edge on a simple stone. In tests it has performed faultlessly and was never designed to be a fine carver, rather a heavy duty Bushcraft Survival knife, hence the thickness, steel choice and grind. All tried and tested formulas with little and easy maintenance.
      Ultimately I can only design/make a knife that I would like to use and hope that others like it as well. It is obviously impossible to make everyone happy unless you had an endless pot of money and produced a thousand different models. Other knife models will develop over time and we will continue to innovate and design.

  8. Mike

    Looks good to me,But would perfer grips to totally enclose handle.rather than leaving “the Glass Breaker”!,Its overal increase in size I’m sure will be welcomed by people with larger hands.

  9. chris camilleri

    Great looking knife and proportion! Given it’s size and weight, hadn’t you considered giving it a convex edge rather than a scandi grind?

    • I did consider all sorts of grinds but still settled for a scandi as it is so easy to maintain a razor sharp edge on a simple stone. In tests it has performed faultlessly and was never designed to be a fine carver, rather a heavy duty Bushcraft Survival knife, hence the thickness, steel choice and grind. All tried and tested formulas with little and easy maintenance.
      Ultimately I can only design/make a knife that I would like to use and hope that others like it as well. It is obviously impossible to make everyone happy unless you had an endless pot of money and produced a thousand different models. Other knife models will develop over time and we will continue to innovate and design.

      • chris camilleri

        Totally in agreement with you Jim!! You ultimately have to design what you are most comfortable with!! I personally own a timberwolf and also bob knife, and a fallkniven. . .I must say that the easiest to maintain is the timberwolf with its scandi grind, although the most adapt for the type of terrain which we have in Malta is the Tops BOB or the fallkniven as their convex edge is more robust for the type of wood that we have over here!!

        I love the proportion of this knife though!!! Looking great and must feel awesome too!!

        Chris

  10. Richard

    Nice looking knife !! Who is going to make this

    knife and where will it be made ?? Also, please

    definitely consider an” all Kydex sheath “option!

    And , please make the ” cordura sheath ” a high

    quality ,well made sheath which ” does the knife

    justice” if you take my meaning !! Regards ,

    Richard.

    • It is all European made with quality European materials. The only element that may be made elsewhere is one of the sheath options that will likely be made in the USA.

      We have 2 current options for sheaths and we will most likely be offering a choice, one model is all Kydex and the other is High Spec Cordura with a Kydex insert (made in the USA). There will NOT be any cheap Far Eastern materials in ANY TBS Knives product. Steels will always be European (mainly German or Swedish), handle materials, sheaths etc. etc.

  11. Johnny Hernandez

    SHUT UP AND TAKE MY MONEY!
    I can’t wait to get my hands on one! 😀

    • I am glad you like it, we certainly do! They will likely be in stock in 6 – 8 weeks and we are going to be offering them in Natural Brown Micarta, Green Micarta and Black Micarta. There will also be various sheath options so that you can tailor your knife how you would like it.

  12. Johnny Hernandez

    Have you guys considered putting a bow drill divot on the knife handle like the ESEE5? It will be considered a bush craft/survival hybrid so a divot would add more versatility to the knife imho. Also, I love the angle of the depression on the back of the blade for the fire steel.The parabola on my Habilis Bushtool is too deep and it limits the size of the rods that I can use on it.

    • We did consider putting a bow drill divot in the handle but decided against it in the end. This knife is designed to as comfortable and as ambidextrous as possible so having a divot in the handle would restrict comfort.

  13. Simon Lester

    I’d like to see a deeper scandi grind on this, something like the Bushprowler, but not so extreme. I think it would make cutting feather sticks and shaving/shaping easier without losing any strength in the blade

    • I have had a few people say they would like to see it with a deeper grind but through testing it has performed extremely well. It has cut feather sticks with ease, cut all manner of wood and even been used for chopping and after all this it is still shave sharp. The grind gives the edge a lot of strength and keeps things simple.
      I have used a Bush Prowler extensively and it does have a very high grind but this can only be achieved by using a specific spring steel and tempering the edge differently from the spine. This works well for the Bush Prowler as it is made in very small quantities and can only really be done on individually forged knives. It simply isn’t practical if you want to make more than a couple a week as it is extremely labour intensive.

  14. Stewart R

    You’re teasing us with this! I have the TBS Boar EDC in curly birch and I love it. Best knife I own! I’m sure demand will be pretty high for one of these beauties!

  15. George Arnold

    I love that you are trying out the Scandi grind on this, and I agree it should facilitate maintenance in the field. The shaped handle is a wonderful thought: many of my woodland trekkers sought custom and contoured handles for their Becker BK2’s and ESEE 5’s. I think you have got it right, and folks can buy slabs if they prefer. I really like the Cordura sheath with the dressed out options already in place. We use these knives for so many things out there in the bush, it is great to carry so many small things in the sheath, and on your pack. Like many have said before, I look forward to your production, and hope to be among the early users! Nice work, and thanks for all the great gear you provide!

  16. Stewpot

    Why no wooden handled versions? I fancy one of these in curly birch.

    • I know what you mean and it would be a natural choice to have a wooden handled version, we have definitely considered a Curly Birch and Turkish Walnut variant.
      This knife was designed as a hybrid Bushcraft/Survival Knife so Micarta handles with an artificial material sheath was the natural choice but we haven’t ruled out a timber scaled model with a leather sheath. The initial run will all be micarta but we may produce some timber variants 3 – 6 months down the line.
      There will be small supply of blades available so you can always consider handling a model yourself if you would like.

  17. Calvin

    I want to purchase this knife. When will it be ready for the public? Tx.

  18. Mihai

    Hi, is there a stainless steel version, or just carbon steel?
    The knife looks really good, but i would only be interested in a stainless version.
    How long is the blade, handle?

    • There is no stainless variant yet but it may be a model added in the future. The blade is 5 inches (125mm) long and the handle is around the same length.

  19. chips

    hi
    im not up to speed on the ‘knife speak’but i have been useing knives in the field for many years, mostly ive ‘made do’ but the one knife that spent most of its time on my webbing was a heavy knife i bought off a T/A SAS chap, they got rid of these type when the SA80 rifle and bayonet was issued. this was a knife that was more for chopping than cutting, not a fighting knife. but the cutting edge was more like a log splitter, i didnt like it as it was difficult to sharpen. so, i got a engineer friend to re-grind it at a better angle, and hay presto, i had a very sharp blade good for cutting and chopping and as it was carbon steel it was easy to sharpen. result it was my main field knife and still is used on the alottment and garden bbq etc. i had no idea at the time but, it seems i had got what you call a ‘SCANDI GRIND, so’, stick with it, and carbon steel, its by far more versatile and easy to maintain. ide like to see a nice pocket folder and small 2″ or 2 1/2″ fixed blade in scandi/carbon. as for pouches/sheaths, cordura type that fits both verticly and horizontely even for the folder.

  20. Andy Gardner

    That is,quite simply,a beautiful toy! You can consider another one sold! I was going to pull the trigger on an ESEE 4 but having seen this majestic piece of cutlery I’ll suffer the 6-8 weeks of not sleeping until I get me sticky little mits on one. Dennis was right about the orange G 10. Superb bit of ironmongery!!

  21. Jon Nicholson

    Looks rather sexy. I would think a deeper grind would be better for slicing and cutting though. I would also like some knife makers to get a little more up to date and start using VG10 or SV3 steels on blades.I like the hybrid look a lot though.

    • The grind is exactly the same angle and depth (relative to thickness) as all Scandi Ground TBS Knives and it works very well. The pictures can look deceiving as the blade is so much deeper than a lot of other knives.
      As for the steel I am afraid that this is a case of “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. There are a lot of fancy steels out there but this high carbon tool steel simply does the job – holds an edge well and is relatively easy to maintain.
      I have just come back from the IWA show in Germany which is a big hunting Trade Show and if I can compare it to the rifle industry there are many new and fancy action designs out there. The thing is that by far the most popular type of modern hunting or sniper rifle on the market today are Mauser action bolt action products that were originally designed well over 100 years ago. It still hasn’t been bettered and is super reliable and practically maintenance free.

  22. Florin

    I like it a lot!
    Just when I thought I had enough knives and almost swore never to buy any new ones, you had to bring out this beauty!
    Maybe this will be the last knife I buy 🙂

    I think micarta is an excellent choice for handle material. I love wood and leather, but micarta is the perfect compromise – it looks great, it feels great, and it doesn’t care about water, salt, etc.

    As far as the design is concerned, my personal preferences would be:
    – remove the firesteel notch: while no doubt practical, it somehow breaks the overall symmetry of the knife design, it just doesn’t look right; in addition, a square, sharp spine of the blade would do just fine as a scraper (Fallkniven F1 is a good example).
    – the lanyard hole would be of little/no practical use to me. Instead, I’d be much happier with a flat butt that could be used for light hammering (driving tent pegs into hard ground, breaking hazelnut/walnut and other hard-shell fruit, using it as a meat tenderizer, etc. etc. etc.)
    – and last, but not least, I would be a lot happier with a thinner blade. Just a tad bit thinner. This “the-thicker-the-better” trend nowadays is threatening to transform knives into small hatches, ignoring the main purpose of a knife blade – that of cutting, slicing and whittling – and not chopping and splitting large wood blocks. I never found any in the wilderness 🙂 And splitting smaller pieces of wood can be easily done with a thinner knife too.

    That being said, I really like the overall design, size, and the cordura sheath. I’ll look forward to the final product!

  23. G*****d

    How resistant will the black traction coating be? With other knives by other manufacturers the traction coating gets damaged easily. You always have the option to strip it but underneath they tend not to have the same high quality satin finish.
    Also, when will these be available? (estimate).
    Thanks A lot!

    • We are not actually producing the black traction coated variant at this time, it tested very well but I am not sure it was worth the extra costs involved. It essentially added £20 to the final product for not a lot of additional benefit so we have shelved it for now.
      All current production knives will be a satin finish with different coloured handles. They are in production and should be with us in 6 – 8 weeks.

      • G*****d

        Thats very fair!

        Cant wait for it to come in stock.

        Is there any chance we would be able to buy both sheaths separately or together as an option? Im undecided between them.

        Thanks!

        • The Cordura sheath will be available separately so the simplest thing to do would be to purchase the Kydex variant and then buy a separate cordura sheath as well.

  24. Andy Gardner

    Hi I just forward ordered one of these beauties the other day. How popular are they proving thus far? Obviously I hope they do well. I can’t recall seeing a nicer specimen. Apart from Spartan blades but one is paying ott for aesthetics there.

    • Hi Andy,
      They are proving to be very popular. I know it will just sound like “sales” type speak but one the prototypes has become my favourite, go to knife.
      It is obviously the one that is the final model (the one in the pictures) and it is one of those tools that needs nothing more done to it as it just works. I have had all sorts of advice and tips about how we should have used different steels, different designs and a vast array of different suggestions on materials but you just can’t beat the tried and tested formula we have put together. Clean, simple, good tough steel – and no Chinese crap!
      A great compliment I had the other day was from a customer in our High Street Store. I had just come in after doing some more testing on the knife (it never stops!) and I was re-arranging axes on the axe wall as we had just had our first delivery from Wetterlings. I had brought the knife in and it was behind the counter when he saw it and asked to take a look. One of the guys handed it over and purposely didn’t give him any information on it at all so that he would give an honest, un-biased opinion. He removed it from the sheath and was quietly examining both the knife and sheath and after 5 minutes simply said “I want it, how much?” – I explained that it was our own design and this was just the “final” prototype and the full production model will be in stock in a month or so (identical except with logos) and the reply came back – “No I want it now – how much”?
      I went on to explain that in that configuration it will be around £150, – “Sounds good, how much for the sheath”?, “No” I said “that is for the knife and sheath”, he didn’t believe me and it took another few minutes to explain that it was for the whole package – needless to say he has placed an order and wants the first one off the production line!
      I think that as soon as they arrive we will be VERY busy packing orders as we have had loads of enquiries. I suspect we will have to put the second batch into production almost immediately, which is nice.

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