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Thread: Condor Golok

  1. #1
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    Condor Golok


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    Condor Tool & Knife has some very unique tools; their machetes are what drew me into their product line.


    I'm a big golok and parang fan, so when I heard they were coming out with a carbon steel golok, I anxiously waited my turn for one. Almost five months later, I got mine. This is model CTK410-14HC, the Condor Golok. It's made in El Salvador and costs around $25 in stores.

    Before I start the actual review, I need to point out some flaws in my specimen. Sentences ending with a (*) are referencing my thread in the W&SS sub-forum. These are detailed flaws with photos that have already been covered, but I've linked to the thread for reference and brevity...
    http://www.bladeforums.com/forums/sh...d.php?t=702616





    The Handle: The Golok has a very unique handle shape; there's a golfball-sized pommel on it. The handle is 6" long (including the pommel) and a whopping 1-1/4" thick. There's a handle space of 4" not counting the pommel, and I find these dimensions to be perfect for my size XL hands. Without going into the defects*, the handle is pretty nice. The walnut handle is medium hardness and is stained well. Three brass pins (1/4" thick) hold the tang into the handle.


    The tang goes into the handle all the way up to the beginning of the pommel.

    The underside of the handle...


    The spine side...


    The lanyard hole is brass-lined will accomodate cordage up to 5/16" thick.


    The blade tapers from 1/4" thick in the handle to just under 1/8" thick at the tip. This gives the golok a nice handle-heavy feel that I prefer...


    I really like this handle size and shape; it's hard to find a handle sized for my hands...


    Last edited by JNieporte; 12-30-2009 at 09:52 AM.

  2. #2
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    Continued...

    The Blade: The Golok has a blade made of 1070 carbon steel at a Rockwell hardness of 54-56. It's 15" long with 14" of cutting edge, and as mentioned before, the blade tapers from 1/4" thick at the handle to just under 1/8" thick at the tip.


    The blade has the Condor name stamped on the left side...


    And an easily-removable sticker on the right side...


    From the box, my Golok was very dull* except for the first 3" or 4" of the tip...


    After a bit of sharpening, the Golok would slice paper nicely...


    The blade is convex-ground and has a baked-on black finish*. I'm not sure how this will hold up with use, but it looks nice.

    I've not used the Golok much except for slicing cardbard mailing tubes, but I must say that edge retention was excellent. The Golok went through many tubes, each of them in one slice, and could still shave afterward.





    No sheath is provided and I've yet to see any on-line places with the factory Condor ones in stock, so I cobbled one together from plastic and duct tape. It does the job...


    You can also use a stock 18" machete sheath, but the fit will be a little snug...


    Overall, I really like the Condor Golok. I know this isn't as in-depth as my normal reviews are, simply because I don't have much use with this machete at all and I don't want to give you false information. For me, this is very close to perfect as far as goloks go. Great edge retention, great feel and size, and very good comfort in my limited use. I hope to do some limbing with it and maybe some small tree felling, but until then I'll be slicing cardboard tubes and boxes with a smile on my face.

    Flanked by an Ontario 18" and Tramontina 18" for size reference...


    Again, in the interest of fairness and impartiality, I encourage you to read my thread about the Golok's flaws here...
    http://www.bladeforums.com/forums/sh...d.php?t=702616

    These flaws won't keep me from getting another Golok at all, but it's worth taking a look at.

  3. #3
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    The Golok that you got is obviously flawed. I am sorry that you did not get a chance to review it back to back with the sample that I sent you. Please contact me for a replacement.

  4. #4
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    Cool write up, look forward to hearing how it handles.

    I'm also looking forward to the Condor Kukri! Might have to get one of them!

  5. #5
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    A Brief Update

    I received Joezilla's package today, and am able to comment further on the Condor Golok. It's as nice as I said, and after using them both for a little bit, I'm still very pleased with it.

    Joe's machete was very sharp, and the handle wasn't loose at all from his trip to Peru, where he used the Golok...


    Joe's came with a black plastic sheath that he trimmed down to 15" in length, and it fits better than my cobbled one...


    I also found out that a Marble's bolo machete sheath will do quite nicely for fit...


    Showing how it seats...


    Joe's Golok was a first-generation model and mine is a second-generation, so I'll be doing a comparison when I have the time to type it out. I love these things...

  6. #6
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    Joe mentioned in another thread that the second gen. is tapered from spine to edge (primary grind) making it lighter than the first gen.

    You've got both in front of you...what do you see?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by AF View Post
    Joe mentioned in another thread that the second gen. is tapered from spine to edge (primary grind) making it lighter than the first gen.

    You've got both in front of you...what do you see?
    The one with the thicker pins is mine (the second generation model). It's a tad lighter, but I don't have a scale, just my hands, and I can feel a weight difference.

  8. #8
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    The differences between the first and second-generation Goloks are here...
    http://www.bladeforums.com/forums/sh...d.php?t=704235

  9. #9
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    Sheath Issue

    Another sheath option is the Cold Steel Bolo Machete sheath.

    The sheath is designed for a 16" bolo blade and the Golok's blade is 15" long, so there's a small gap in there.


    Showing how it seats...


    You can also put the Golok in the sheath a tad lower, but retention doesn't improve much...


    The only problem that I have with the fit is the Golok can be pulled out without undoing any of the snaps.


    Now, this isn't a major thing since you'll be carrying the Golok and sheath on your hip; it certainly won't fall out in this normal position. You can also insert the Golok without undoing any of the snaps, but I advise against this because if you miss the safety toe, the sharp tip of the Golok is exposed.

    Just another option of carrying your Condor.

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