I have liked the looks of the TOPS machete since it came out, but I haven't had much need for a long machete in the Tennessee hills. While I had no intentions or desire to take on feral hogs or alligators with a machete, I was inspired by the environment to get a longer blade than what I had and decided to give the TOPS machete a go and see if I liked the handle as much as I thought I would. (handles are one of my issues with most machetes), and put in the order. When it arrived I made an improvised, easy-on/easy-off, baldric rig from para-cord, and built a basic kit around the machete sheath as it has dual utility pouches. That (along with my snake boots) became a go-to piece of equipment for the duration of the trip.
I do really like the handle, it's a lot more comfortable than other production machetes I've had, and I like first finger notches in handles on chopping blades for improved purchase.
It made short work of the tangling brier vines in the area
I like the way it handles, it came with a very nice edge, and green vegetation like palmetto and palm branches were no challenge at all. Pardon the dirt and sweat, it had been a long day in a hot humid area.
Dead pine proved to be very little challenge for the impact of the long blade and sharp edge.
Attacking a tree top laying across the road after the storms I learned that green hard wood wasn't much of a task for it.
It even handled seasoned hard wood well.
I know some people say it's a little pricey for a machete, but the last machete I bought cost $30.00, the “good” sheath was another $30.00 plus tax on both...and I liked neither anywhere near as much. I'm finally, for the first time, happy with a production machete, and I have no complaints at all.