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  1. This is a thread on a knife that has been designed after extensive testing of a great number of production and semi production knives for the safari hunter. It will not be used to skin lots of animals as the skinning staff will do that but it has to be able to do so. It would be best if I post the important parts of the thread that lead to this series of knives so you will have the background understanding for the design concept for both the knife and the sheath. A reasonably long test report but it sets the paremeters for the eventual design I will make up for aproval. I have C&P the relevant bits from the African Hunting forum where I have been for a number of years. Best Safari Knife Shoot Out – 2017 D. Troy Moritz & Austringer Outfitters What makes a knife a “safari knife” and who does it best? We logged hundreds of hours distilling the core requirements for a proper safari knife, created testing criterion and ran some of the best knives in the world through their paces. Who reigns supreme? Our requirements which we determined based upon reasonable use cases can best be described as follows, although none of the entrants actually achieved all functional and non-functional requirements: 1.) Suitable for General Field Craft. Examples of this trait would be cutting a few branches from a blind here and there, sharpening a stick or two for grilling up the sand grouse skewers for lunch over the mopane wood fire and other basic bushcraft duties. 2.) Fit for use as a Standard Hunting Knife. Can the knife dress a large game animal at least to the point of quartering, removing loins and backstraps, basic bird/fish cleaning and other standard and customary hunting duties. 3.) The tourist’s Odd Jobs while on safari. Is the knife razor sharp enough to do the near impossible task of cutting a fine Cuban cigar in the bush without destroying a fine stick? Can it act as a cigar cutter 10x in a row without being dull? What about cutting into biltong all day as you try to snack on dried cross grain cut meats and jerkys? 4.) The multi-tool of unforeseen and inappropriate jobs. Contrary to all good sense and fair judgment, can the knife do things you ought not due like pry open rusted small lock to get at the tools or tire? Can the knife endure the abuse of use as an emergency ice pick to get perfect size shavings for your gin and tonic? In short, can it endure misuse and abuse that in good conscience should void the warranty on any knife? 5.) Maintains its edge and sharpens with minimal effort. Dull knives are not useful and they serve as a particular nuisance when you’re 8,000 miles from your Japanese Whetstone. Does the knife have a Scandinavian single bevel grind that makes sharpening imbecile proof in the field? Does the steel alloy make touch ups of the blade against a leather scabbard or inside of your leather belt possible? We dulled all the blades and went on to see how easy they touch up with a quick strop knowing a proper sharpening is not likely. 6.) Proportionally appropriate for the tasks of a safari in both form and function. The knives tested all were fixed blade models that could provide slashing, thrusting and <gulp> prying abilities. Proper handles that fit adult hands with good indexing and blade geometry, reasonable 3-4” blades, quality sheaths and all within the realms of suitable “bushcraft style” knives that are clearly multi-purpose knives that would be suitable proxies for traditional hunting knives when called upon. We ran a great many contestants through their paces under many different conditions in a three phase process. Phase 1 – Over 30 knives were tested in the USA in backyard conditions to see if they held any promise as contenders. In addition to the knives featured here we looked at everything from classic WWII Kabars, Case, Bucks, Beckers, Condors, Ontario, Benchmade, Gerber, Helle, Spyderco and Moro. Phase 2 – More than a dozen knives made it past the initial testing and got to be used on an actual hunt in Texas. During this field test we field dressed several deer, started fires with ferocium rods, cut a few cigars to celebrate the day’s successes and even used them as utensils at some dinners. Phase 3 – The preliminary finalists were sent for final testing in Zimbabwe for more than two weeks of rigorous use and carry in real world safari conditions. During this third phase Professional Hunters, Clients, National Parks Rangers, Skinners and Trackers all got to put these knives through rigorous endurance tests to see just what sort of punishment was endured. In the end, we had four winners that will surely guide your decision making towards the right knife for your upcoming safari. The winners are:
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