Amateur review of the REKAT Carnivour


Very nice review. I think your tests have shown what REKAT is trying to promote....Their knives are meant to be worked hard and still be around for the next time you need them.

Labeling your review as "amateur" is self-deprication at its best
! I certainly wouldn't classify it as such and can readily find published reviews that weren't as comprehensive or honest about the authors biases.

My only concern was with the bat. I had thought that the A.T. Barr test involved a light to medium impact on the spline... I may be wrong here. It just looked like the impact you get with the leverage associated with the extension the bat affords may be overly heavy. Then again you didn't shatter the knives so you may indeed have hit upon a better (read safer) mousetrap for home lockwork testing.

I really enjoyed your review... damn site better than those I've posted. And it held a special interest for me as I have a custom Talonite bladed Carnivour on order

Again, great job!


I did NOT escape from the institution! They gave me a day pass!

I'm still so exhilarated from reading the review, so maybe I'll repeat what I just said on the KnifeForums.

Long, yes (13 pages printed), arduous, no way!. Haven't read any review with this much enthusiasm in a long, long time, and it got better the farther I got. Like a critical treatise and a good novel in one! I'd like to stress the word 'critical', in particular. The review didn't give me an irresistible urge to go and order a Carnivore right away, but now I know that if I'll decide to purchase one (or two), I won't be disappointed afterwards. I know exactly what to expect. That alone means an awful lot to me. And, for me, that's what reviews are for.

One small question, though. Did the Endura really get/deserve an A for combat ergonomics??

Excellent job SB, not a knife that I am interested in, but a very informative description none the less. Markku stated my main feeling exacty :

The review didn't give me an irresistible urge to go and order a Carnivore right away, but now I know that if I'll decide to purchase one (or two), I won't be disappointed afterwards. I know exactly what to expect. That alone means an awful lot to me. And, for me, that's what reviews are for.

I am interested in a more utility based design from REKAT and your review certainly gave me significant information to work with in making my future decisions in that area.


[This message has been edited by Cliff Stamp (edited 09 June 1999).]
Yeah, the T-Ball Bat test is a bit dramatic. But boy was it fun!
And quite controversial. Is it unreasonable? IMHO, no, because the Rolling Lock withstood the test, which to me meant it's still within the lock's performance envelope. I was pretty confident that all three knives could have survived A.T. Barr's version. So I couldn't really use it as a measure unless I dramatically increased the amount of force. But doing so also meant that in the event of a failure, I would severely injure my hand. In that respect, I think the T-Ball Bat test was a safer alternative to test a large amount of force without ending up in the hospital. Not to say this is completely safe either. All through the whole thing, I was worried the knife might fly out of the bat and head towards me. Hehe. Nothing I'd do again anytime soon.

I gave Endura's ergonomics an 'A' because it didn't hurt my hand. On the other hand, I suppose it didn't hurt because it was slipping so much.
The grade report was only for the purposes of a quick recap. It's hard to describe everything accurately with a single letter, but think I should change it to something else anyways? Anyhow, I'll repeat a short version of this over KnifeForums.

Thank you guys for the pat in the back. That means a lot as your collective opinions holds quite a bit of weight to me. And it goes without saying that all comments and critiques, especially on how to improve things in the future, are welcome.

[This message has been edited by SB (edited 09 June 1999).]
SB --

Everything a review should be! Great job. I think I'll start doing a mud test also.

I've maintained for years that for a sport-utility folder, once you buy an endura, you've reached the point of diminishing returns. You might get marginal improvements on a knife that costs double what the endura costs (*might*), but nowhere near double the performance.

I didn't have time to read the entire review in detail, but I didn't notice a long-term ergonomic test. 10 minutes of hard cutting with each knife is enough to bring out the hot spots in the handle, and this is the place highly-contoured handles (like the Carnivore's) tend to break down. You've already done more than enough, but if there's no such test in your review, could I trouble you to try it out? If not, don't sweat it, I have a Carnivore coming and I'll try it with all 3 knives.

One thing I've noticed is that the AFCK's forward rake really adds to long-term comfort. Whittling with the endura and AFCK, at first performance is similar (with endura possibly having a slight edge). But in the long term, the forward rake of the AFCK puts my wrist in a much more comfortable position, and I can whittle a wood stake much harder for much longer.

You saw some results in endura vs. AFCK that I didn't see, which leads me to a question: were the edges on the endura and AFCK close to the factory edges, or were the edges identical? When I sharpened both knives to the exact same edge on my AFCK, I saw some differences in performance that you didn't.


[This message has been edited by Joe Talmadge (edited 09 June 1999).]
One of the best reviews I have ever read, bar none! Exactly how reviews should be done! Nothing amatuerish about this one!

Nice Job!You have the makings of a true knife-breaker

I have to agree somewhat with Joe. The AFCK remains a top utility pick for me just because of sheer comfort over time.
However, the blade to handle ratio blows,and the edge is a hair too thick and that turns me way off.

The Carnivour is an excellent effort by a great company. Bob and crew seem to always have a neat trick up their sleeves.

I am very impressed with the quality of my Carnivour's blade grinding,sharpness, the nice recurve, and the well finished G10 scales.

The lock is more than adequate for any encounter IMHO. I would also like to see ambi studs, as well as a higher clip. Maybe they can do something about the 6.5 ounce weight also, it tends to grag down my drawers a bit.

Anyway, not to take up too much space.
Nice job again.

Batter Up..
Good one! Did any non-knfe knut see you performing the bat test?

Tea drinker and hellraiser from Northern Sweden, above the arctic circle.

[This message has been edited by Cousin Cinnamon (edited 09 June 1999).]

Great review! I am awaiting delivery of my Rolling lock KFF from Pat Crawford. I'll be sure to keep it out of the mud. I stopped using the saber grip for thrusts because the ramp notches can tear up your thumb and because the knife is not held as securely as with the natural grip. Of course you need a knife with a very deep finger notch to use the natural grip without anxiety. I reserve the saber grip for snap cuts. I agree that the slide bar is the weak point of the lock. I also wish that it was less accesible to inadvertant contact. I had Pat leave a section of blunt edge near the hinge for some added insurance in the event of an accidental lock release.


Not to sound too critical, but there were several weaknesses to the review. One of them was the edge. Again, I broke my cheap sharpener a little while back. With financial constraints, it's quite hard to convince my wife to get me a sharpener.. mostly because what I really want costs a pretty penny. I have been able to reach a compromise with her. She's agreed to allow me to have a Spyderco Sharpmaker and I should have that sometime soon. But getting back to the topic, no, the edges on the AFCK and the Endura were not factory sharp. They've already gone through some use prior to the testing, and that's probably what skewed the results.

The only person to witness the bat test was my 9-year old son, who was quite proud of himself by the way. It was his first time holding the camera. Otherwise, no one else was there to see it. Just that I didn't want to take too long to do this review; I casually mentioned on a different thread that I'd get it done some time this week and I wanted to keep my word. So, I grabbed the most expedient pair of hands at the time....

Yeah, I agree the natural grip is the best overall grip to use whenever possible. Only trouble is, natural grips doesn't agree with the Side Rolling Lock. That was probably the biggest personal letdown for me. But it's not a major problem that can't be fixed. For example, I've made the suggestion to make it smaller. If necessary, the button release can be moved to the other side and that would solve the problem as well... until you switch hands.
But again, I've never actually got the lock to disengage when delibrately white-knuckling, only half-way disengaged. It's comforting to know in case I fall back on my muscle memory for any reason. Hehe.

Speaking of Saber grip, I realized that snap cuts are taught not just because they're better or something, but because they're about the ONLY type of techniques you can count on with the saber. I mean, we're dealing with a combination of a relatively weak grip and retention, but having exceptional, intuitive indexing. But my gut instinct still tells me that you can get a knife to index as good as the saber in natural given the proper designs. Exactly what that is, though, I'm not for sure... yet. Oh well, just an observation.

[This message has been edited by SB (edited 10 June 1999).]
Among the best reviews I've read so far. Very informative and entertaining. My fave was your battle with those nasty weeds:

I deployed my folders instead. Ready for the grueling bouts of hand-to-hand combat, I brought out my Carnivour first. It
made an incredible showing in the classic chopsocky-like fashion. Even Jackie Chan would have been proud. Snap cuts flew out like a chain of lightning accompanied by the thunderous boom of a blood-curdling battle cry. Time seemed to slow down at this point. Beads of sweat trickled down the hero's heavy brow as he slowly scanned the war torn battlefield with his eyes.
Everywhere he looked, the once mighty giants amongst them began to slowly separate and fall from the crisp, clean, surgically cut lines. Unfortunately, even with its keen edge, the foes are proving to be a match for the dark predator. With the more supple ones, our hero can only grab, chop, and curse at these abominations until they have been cut in half or their vile tendrils are evicted from the bosom of Mother Earth.

I rank it: **** (four stars!)
Great review. I especially liked your T-Ball bat test.

Thanks for taking the time to do all this testing. Your inclusion of all those pictures really helped give the review more impact and made it easier to understand. Reading it has helped me determine where the Carnivour fits on my purchase list.
SB -- okay, that explains some things. I actually don't want the AFCK to be "factory sharp", because the edges tend to come from the factory too thick and smooth. Spyderco edges from the factory are pretty smooth also, but tend to be thinner. As a result, a factory Endura might very well outcut a factory AFCK. But when I put the same edge on both knives -- 15 degree thinning bevels plus a 20-degree main bevel w/ most of the edge left coarse -- the AFCK's superior ergonomics and forward rake let the AFCK match or beat the endura on just about everything. But it means spending some time at the stone thinning the AFCK for a while. Factory edge vs. factory edge, I would more expect the results you saw.

Thanks again for the great review, you're setting a standard that'll be hard to match!

Thanks for the great review! You were right, it is long, but also thorough. I don't really mind length anyway, 500 pages is a short book to me. I especially liked your "weed battle" and T-ball bat test. The mud test was great as well. I do a lot of 4-wheeler riding in the mud, and it would be nice to know how a folder would perform in the mud before I bought it. Abouyt your sharpening difficulty, I know the feeling! I don't have a wife, but I am "financially challenged". Anyway, thanks a gain for a great and well written review.
I liked your pepper spray review!

How bout finishing up the test and let us know how pepper spray works as a mouth wash?
Geez, no thanks. I'll take other people's word on that one.

Thanks again for all your positive comments. Needless to say, I am quite happy about how well it was received.
I searching through some old threads and rediscovered this one. Excellent review. Do you have plans to review anything else?

Dennis Bible
Hi shootist16. Thanks for thinking so highly about my review. Every time you put up that link, I would think to myself, "Oh geez! I gotta go clean it up!" Hehe.

There are tons of high caliber people (many on here) who can and has done lots of stuff in the knife area and beyond. So, if they already did it, I have little motivation to duplicate it.

And again, because there are so much good information floating out there, even if I am only doing an amateur site, I want it to be of the highest quality I can muster.

In short, I am emphasizing on originality and quality. Well, that and because my site has a focal theme. That's why my site has remained small.

But yes. I am working on a personal home defense package that I think many of you might find interesting, or at least amusing. But I'm afraid I won't be ready for at least 3 more months.

In the meantime, something may or may not come along. I'm always looking for contributions. Even though the site is considered mine, I'd prefer to see it as more of a public repository where the we can gather good information together. So, if anybody feels like contributing, by all means, please contact me. I can't guarantee anything, but I'm always willing to listen and work with you.

[This message has been edited by SB (edited 27 December 1999).]