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"Who you callin' a RIGGER?!" - cut testing

Discussion in 'Daniel Fairly Knives' started by fast14riot, Jun 21, 2012.

  1. fast14riot

    fast14riot Gold Member Gold Member

    Oct 27, 2010
    I first had ordered this knife way back in October of 2011, it was a design project by Daniel, to my desired needs and uses. I in no way gave him a design to make, but told him the basic parameters of what I needed. The basics of it were; sheep's foot like point, knuckle clearance, 3.5 - 5 inch blade with a little belly, and a lanyard hole. That's it. I had asked if he could taper the tang, purely for aesthetics, but it balances beautifully. Many of you have followed along with the build log Daniel did, so I'll list the important specs.

    DFK Rigger
    154CM stainless steel, heat treated by DFK
    8.75" LOA
    4" sharpened
    0.227" thick at ricasso
    Weight: 6.2 oz
    Balance point: ~0.25" in front of forward tube
    Lightly tapered tang
    Stabilized curly teak scales
    Two 0.25" stainless flared tubes/pins



    I race sailboats semi professionally as a bow man, which includes maintaining the standing and running rigging. I also make running rigging for boats. I use a knife on board and ashore. I requested that a "toothy" edge be utilized to aid in cutting line (there are only two "ropes" on a sail boat). I believe it is a 400# edge, perfect for slicing tough stuff.

    I don't have a need to do a brass rod test, or baton dry wood, or chop a 2x4 with this knife. I need it to cut line in hand, one handed while aloft in the rig, or on the bench while making sheets and halyards. It will also have the very important task of cutting limes for my rum and coke! I chose an assortment of line types, construction, and materials in sizes I commonly encounter.

    Clockwise from middle top: (the NS logo)
    5/16" Vectran (aramid based, very strong tensil)
    Old halyard containing, 7/16" UV coated Vectran, partial Polyester covered, and Kevlar/Poly core in the tail
    3/8" Stay-set Poly/poly core
    3/8" Technora (aramid based, very tough and abrasion resistant)
    3/8" Spectra (aramid based, very light)
    3/16" Vectran "un-set"
    1/4" Shock cord (bungee)

    In this mix there are new unused lines and used, some were used in purchase (over a sheave) and some in tension (Halyards/sheets). This can change the dynamics of a line, compacting the weave and making it tougher to cut. While the unused lines tend to flatten out on the edge and roll around, making things difficult at times.


    Now doing this cut testing alone I couldn't get any video or pics in action, I only have two hands. This is typically how I cut loose line


    I am VERY impressed with the ease this knife cut through anything I put across the edge! I suspected that the green Vectran halyard would be the most difficult, requiring much effort or a second swipe of the blade, but as I tensed up to pull the blade through I realized that it was already cut before much effort was even needed!

    The quality of the cut edge was also worthy of noting, a nice clean cut with even ends and very little fraying. I normally would wrap a turn or two of tape tightly around the line and cut through the tape, but for testing I opted not too because I don't always have that luxury on board.

    As expected, the stressed lines left a much smoother cut edge than the unused lines, but that is not to say they were frayed at all. Very neat and tidy ends that can be seized and whipped very easily. The two that really stand out for me were the 7/16" UV coated Vectran and the 1/4" shock cord. I actually had to cut the shock cord a second time because I thought it just parted due to age, it was cut so cleanly, but no, it was a perfectly clean cut with all the rubber strands nice and even. The green Vectran, because of its size took the most effort, but it took maybe 10lbs of force. Not much effort was needed at all. 1-10 scale, it went from 2-5. 1/4" shock cord was the easiest and the 7/16" vectran the hardest.



    The least important aspect for me is the sheath, but don't discount how important it can be. It included a "taco" style kydex sheath with the fold at the spine. A leather one would look nice, but for wet conditions it would just mean more maintenance. It also has an opening at the fold on the bottom so it does not retain any water, and retention is just right. It uses a small tec-lok mounted just below the forward edge of the scales giving a nice ride height that does not poke the car seat or your ribs. It tilts slightly forward for a quick deployment when needed. I guess because all these little aspects were addressed, it disappears on my belt and becomes unimportant. Very nicely done.


    Overall this has been one first-class experience! When entering this project with Daniel, I told him to make this a back burner project and I never once bugged him about it. He gave me updates every so often when he had time to work on it, or when he had a question. Really did a fantastic job as a service provider, and as a craftsman. Even through some big time changes like building a new shop and having a baby! The fit and finish are just what I expected, clean, tight, and good user grade. I am one very satisfied customer, and will gladly be one again.

    Proud supporter of Daniel Fairly Knives!

    -Xander Holman
    Stockton, CA
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2012
  2. pilgrimuk


    Apr 18, 2006
    That's really nice!

    I work on the coast and go on boats and think a good knife for cutting the various rope and lines is essential, without a doubt this knife can handle 'em!

    Good bye! Enjoy the knife and thanks for the review.

  3. 0037ksm


    Feb 23, 2007
    Great, great review and amazing photographs. Thanks for sharing.
  4. flatblackcapo

    flatblackcapo Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 25, 2012
    Xander if you want to do a video I will be the camera man. let me know.nice review.
  5. Daniel Fairly Knives

    Daniel Fairly Knives Full Time Knifemaker Moderator

    Jan 9, 2011
    Xander, seeing this really makes my week!

    Thanks so much for the incredible photos and for taking the time to review my work.

    The rope testing takes it to another level, thanks again for all the effort :thumbup: :thumbup:
  6. GrueNZ


    Oct 20, 2011
    Awesome knife, and thanks for the photos! Well done Daniel, another beauty.

    Loving the wood grain! Oiled or sealed?

    IMWILSON Gold Member Gold Member

    May 20, 2011
    Damn fine review Xander. That Teak turned out really nice Daniel.
  8. Daniel Fairly Knives

    Daniel Fairly Knives Full Time Knifemaker Moderator

    Jan 9, 2011
    The teak was stabilized when I got it, it took a reasonably high polish on it's own. I used some Danish oil to bring out even more shine at the end, it made a nice difference.

    I took the wood up to 2000 grit and hand buffed the Danish oil finish with leather then an old t-shirt.

    Much appreciated!

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