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Thread: Buck 110 Review

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Confederate View Post
    I've never really understood how well the 420HC steel Buck uses compares to other polished steels. Would a Buck 110 with 420HC blade be better than, say, a Cold Steel Voyager with an AUS 8 polished blade? I've heard folks say that Buck uses a very effective heat treating process that make it better than most other 420HC bladed knives, but I'm skeptical. I've also heard one fellow say it was as good or better than many premium steels, but in what ways? As steel becomes more edge retentive, it becomes less tough and vice versa.

    I think Buck's heat treating is probably as good as it can be, but other than that I wonder how it would compare with AUS 8, VG-1 and 440A/440C.

    Has anyone ever done any cutting tests?
    Nothing official, but it stacks up pretty well with the heat treat and geometry. 110's are still one of the best deals in the knife world, bar none!

  2. #22
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    I would like to mention that Buck uses the supervision of the famous heat treater, Paul Bos, which probably accounts for the great heat treat of their 420 HC and others.

    The Cabala's Alaskan Guide 110 is made with CPM S30V and it is stamped with the bos logo. It costs about twice what the regular 110 one does. Cabala claims this blade ( S30V ) holds an edge 45% longer than 420 HC. The few knives that I have made, with S30V, were heat treated by Paul Bos, and their performance has been just great!

  3. #23
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    The 3 little brass rods serve as the pivot and end pins. The steel one is the rocker arm pivot. All are about the same length, 4 pins all together.

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by A.P.F. View Post
    Here is one from the Buck forum. I forget who took it.


    ...That's one of Chickentrax's many project knives and he took the pic...He could be a "Guru" among us "tinkerers"...

  5. #25
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    Thanks for giving credit where due, Darryl. I hope Trax doesn't mind.

  6. #26
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    As far as edge retention testing goes....while it's not the most scientific method out there, I like to test the blade on cutting cardboard. I had a couple of large boxes left over after a move a couple of years back and for the heck of it, decided to test out one of my 110s. It's just a plain Jane version, 420 steel and all. Anyway, I made full top-to-bottom cuts on these two boxes and spaced the cuts I think a couple of inches apart. I honestly lost count of how many cuts I made (40 or more?) but I completely destroyed those two boxes and the 110 was still close to shaving sharp. It sounds crazy I know, but I swear it to be true. I've always used a Buck fixed blade for cleaning deer and carrying during hunting season, but this year I'm going to try my 110 in the woods more for cleaning game, clearing trails out, etc. From what I've seen, once you get used to the weight on your side, you've got one heck of a cutting machine there!

  7. #27
    Funny, I am not a fan of 420HC but Buck, using Paul Bos for heat treat has done a very good job with the steel. I would strongly prefer 420HC over any AUS steel, but that, like all steel discussion, is just me...

  8. #28
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    I bought a slightly used 110 (made in 1993) for $30 at an antique store locally. I've had several Bucks in my lifetime, but not a 110, because I always happened to have a SchradeUSA LB7, or 60T, or 70T, or something very similar in size and appearance from another manufacturer. So, I never really had the "need" for a new knife of that type.

    That all changed when I bought the 110; the "walk & talk" on this knife is better than anything I've owned. The fit and finish is better as well. I especially like the fact that the handle edges are not only radiused, but radiused perfectly.

    For the price, you won't find a better deal. And, made in the USA, for only $30-35.

    thx - cpr

  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by jtb49er2000 View Post
    ...I honestly lost count of how many cuts I made (40 or more?) but I completely destroyed those two boxes and the 110 was still close to shaving sharp. It sounds crazy I know, but I swear it to be true....
    I believe it.
    After all, there's more to edge performance than just the blade-steel....there's also edge geometry and blade design.
    And in my opinion, the Buck 110 is outstanding in both respects.

  10. #30
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    Has anyone tried the Buck 110 made for Bass Pro in 154cm (I think) steel? I hear the Cabela's version in SV30 is quite good.

  11. #31
    I too saw that version at bass pro shops and it is 154cm. The only reason I didn't get it was because I had my heart set on a different knife at the time, but I should have gotten it while I had the chance. I would like to hear a review on that blade as well.

  12. #32
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    OK, this is my first post on this forum.
    I bought my 110 back around 1974. (For about $22). Does anyone have any idea what steel Buck was using back then?

    Thanks

  13. #33
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    The near mysticism that surrounds Buck's 110 steel is one of the more fascinating aspects of knife lore.

    But heat treating isn't a lost art. It's not rocket science, either. So I read how thrilled people are with their Buck 110s, but I wonder why owners of Cold Steel Voyagers aren't equally as vocal. Those knives have very similar 4-inch polished stainless steel blades. They can be sharpened to frightfully sharp levels and they probably hold their edges better (if AUS8/VG-1 is better than 420HC), that is.

    I'd like to get a Buck 110 with finger grooves and an S30V blade. I'd also like to have those disk top blade openers to allow one-handed opening.

  14. #34
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    Keeencutter--a hearty welcome to you! I believe the early Buck 110s used 440C. Head on over to the Buck sub-forum here. You'll find plenty of info and great camaraderie.
    Friend to all here.

    God bless John Wayne, Sam Colt, John Browning, and Charles M. Russell!

  15. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Keencutter View Post
    OK, this is my first post on this forum.
    I bought my 110 back around 1974. (For about $22). Does anyone have any idea what steel Buck was using back then?

    Thanks
    Buck used 440C on the 110's until about 1982.

  16. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by batosai117 View Post
    I too saw that version at bass pro shops and it is 154cm. The only reason I didn't get it was because I had my heart set on a different knife at the time, but I should have gotten it while I had the chance. I would like to hear a review on that blade as well.
    The Bass Pro 110 is CPM154. It is different and a tad better than 154CM.

    It is a powdered metal, and if you head over to the Buck forums here, there is a few threads about all of these 110 models

  17. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Confederate View Post
    The near mysticism that surrounds Buck's 110 steel is one of the more fascinating aspects of knife lore.
    But heat treating isn't a lost art. It's not rocket science, either. So I read how thrilled people are with their Buck 110s, but I wonder why owners of Cold Steel Voyagers aren't equally as vocal. Those knives have very similar 4-inch polished stainless steel blades. They can be sharpened to frightfully sharp levels and they probably hold their edges better (if AUS8/VG-1 is better than 420HC), that is.
    .
    Yes, but Confederate, you left out a variable. The edge profile has as much to do with cutting performance as the steel or the heat treat. Actually, in some cases, more. There was a post by Cliff IIRC in which he cited data showing that a 420HC blade outcut a D2 blade cutting manila rope. Now the D2 blade was sharp, but it had a thick edge. When the D2 was thinned out, reprofiled, it easily outcut the 420HC.

    Can't remember where I read it, but I remember a comment stating that in the 90's? Buck did a lot a CATRA testing and came up with a new profile to optimize the cutting ability of its blades. Cold Steel did not. So it is quite possible that a Buck 110 with its optimized profile could outcut the Cold Steel knife, even if the Cold Steel blade were made from steel with better inherent edge retension, which it is quite possible that the AUS8 and VG1 have.
    Last edited by knarfeng; 11-10-2007 at 09:53 AM. Reason: fixed quote to appear as quote

  18. #38
    Just wanted to chime in for a second. I love the Buck 110s. I have one and also one of the later titanium handled versions w/ the same steel. While the geometry is excellent, and they take a very good edge, mine did not seem to keep that edge all that long.
    Never any side by side testing, but the Aus8 Voyager I had seemed to keep an edge MUCH longer. It also had good geometry and a stronger tip.
    As far as Buck's heat treat, it did do better than a chinese made 440 steel knife I had. Not sure what difference that makes.
    Also, the things that seem to dull knives are things like cardboard, paper, and rubber. If you are not cutting those things, then most any blade will stay sharp much longer.

  19. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by knarfeng View Post
    The edge profile has as much to do with cutting performance as the steel or the heat treat. Actually, in some cases, more. ... Buck did a lot a CATRA testing and came up with a new profile to optimize the cutting ability of its blades. Cold Steel did not. So it is quite possible that a Buck 110 with its optimized profile.
    Thanks. This makes sense.

    Just makes me wonder: was the 440C Buck formerly used superior to their current 420HC? Also, why did they change? Finally, where's the best place to get an S30V Buck 110?

  20. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Confederate View Post
    Thanks. This makes sense.

    Just makes me wonder: was the 440C Buck formerly used superior to their current 420HC?
    You know I've been wondering the same thing. I still have my 110 from ~1969. I need to get one of the new ones and compare the performance. It's on my To-Do List. I just haven't done it yet.

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