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AG Russell's Deer hunter?

Oct 8, 1998
Heard many people said that it is
a good fixed-balde, I notice that
it has the thickness is 0.08".
Could any one tell me is it tough
enough with this thickness?
can it be used as camp knife for
choping and other heavy job?
The Deerhunter is easily one of my all-time fave fixed blades, especially for camping.

Let me answer your last question first. No, the Deerhunter is not a chopper. But that's not a matter of being "tough enough", it's a matter of blade length and weight. No knife in this class is going to be used for chopping, not even a 3/16" CS Master Hunter. You'll want to bring along a machete, kukri, axe, etc. for chopping if you're going to do that.

That said, the Deerhunter is one of the best camp knives ever. 90% of camp knife use for most people is food prep, whittling walking sticks or marshmellow sticks, cutting out moleskin patches or bandages, and other miscellaneous cutting. The thin-bladed Deerhunter will BLOW AWAY just about anything else you might use. You won't believe the efficiency of a thin flat-ground blade until you cut with it.

For all your small-job usage, this knife is tough enough, and will do the job better than just about anything else. Drop point and plenty of belly makes it perfect for just about everything, from field dressing to food prep.

The sheath is also a perfect fit for camping. It's a one-handed lightweight zytel sheath that swivel-clips on to you. Clip it on to you, and it swings out of the way when you sit or lie -- you're always comfortable. And you don't have to take off your belt or go through any other acrobatics to move the sheath around. Going on a hike? Unclip from your belt and hang it from the back of your pack, so anyone else in your party can grab it if they need it.

Now if you want something a little bigger and tougher, check out the T.H. Rinaldi TTKK. It's got the same general philosophy -- flat ground drop-point blade. But the blade is a little thicker (1/8"), so though it cuts like you can't believe, it won't quite match the Deerhunter. But it's bigger and tougher, and is a drop-blade format so it's even more suitable for food prep. You can get a Deerhunter-like swivel-clip sheath, or a slip sheath, or a multi-carry sheath with it. The TTKK is my idea of the perfect small-job camp knife.

If you're used to taking along (say) a 7" knife that's mediocre at little jobs like food prep and mediocre at big jobs like clearing or splitting kindling, you won't believe how happy you'll be after you split the chores up between a big-job specialist (machete, kukri, etc.) and little-job specialist (puukko, Deerhunter, TTKK, Spyderco Moran, etc.) Trust me, you'll be happy you did. Judging by the fact that everyone in my camp party brings big knives and they all end up fighting over my Deerhunter, I think it's the best way to go!


[This message has been edited by Joe Talmadge (edited 31 March 1999).]
The primary bevel is ground low as well and this makes the edge really thin so it cuts exceptionally well. However this would also make it more fragile than a thicker grind (which would give lower cutting performance). The edge would probably not hold up well if you tried to chop down a tree but I would be surprised it you actually saw blade failure. I wouldn't do much prying with it.

I have wanted to get one for awhile now and just keep getting put off because of the blade steel. Is it still just offered in AUS-8A and ATS-34? Are there any plans for a decent tool or high-speed steel? Any non-custom knives with similar geometry and materials?