Feb 19, 1999
Okay, I've been talking about it all week and let me start by saying that this was my first Internet purchase of any kind. Bought the MINI from "Knife Center of the Internet." Placed my order late Monday night and the knife arrived at my door on Friday. Pretty good! It'll have to do until somebody invents a "Star Trek" type transporter.

As several here know, I have a fondness for BM knives in general and the AFCK in particular. It's like they took a great knife (Spyderco Police) and made it perfect. IMHO the failings of the Police were unpleasant blade geometry and poorly placed (for me)lock lever. I have been informed that the lock lever is not a problem for most folks, but it is for me. Probably due to ridiculously overdeveloped palm muscles releasing the lock everytime I gripped the Police.(No, not Iron claw training, just lots of work!)

As to the MINI AFCK (plain edge)
Let me start by saying I'm a bit dissapointed. Fit and finish are fine. Not much to complain about in the cosmetics department. The "grain" in the G10 scales is not as straight as I'm used to, but I suppose that's nitpicking.
What bothers me most is the reduced diameter of the blade stop. On the Full size AFCK it measures at .190 inches and on the MINI only .160. I can see no reason for this from an engineering standpoint so it must be cost cutting. (Is it really cheaper to stock a seperate part when you could have made them interchangable?) It could be said that the smaller knife doesn't NEED a blade stop that big, but what's wrong with over-engineering it a little bit? I'd pay the extra dime.

Unlike the AFCK(Ti liners), the MINI has SS liners. The MINI liners measure at .045 inches while the Ti liners in the AFCK measure .055. I know it's not much, but it is a visible difference. Did they really have to thin these out? Seems to me, if they'd stuck with the same diameter stop pin and same thickness liner, this would be one STRONG little knife.
The liner also has a pronounced "tab" sticking out of the "choile"
(Technically speaking this is not a true choile, but it fills that purpose)to facilitate easier closing. Unfortunately, this also means possibly easier opening at the wrong time. When I wrap my big mitt around this little knife, I'm already aware of a tendency to put pressure on this tab. This is an accident looking for a place to happen and it's going to be "Dremel time" tomorrow!

Overall width is thinner, I see this as yet another black mark in the name of cost cutting. A black mark because the handle material (again, theoretically) lends strength to the lockup of the knife. The less the handles can flex, the less the chances of liner failure.

Last is the matter of the tension adjustment/pivot screw. On my old AFCK this is a Hex head. This makes for easy personalization of blade opening tension. On the new MINI, it's another TORX screw. Great, now I get to go buy another of the useless little TORX driver things, just so I can adjust the tension on the new knife!
The blade came shaving sharp, but nowhere near what I call "scary sharp". For an understanding of what scary sharp is, go find a bowhunting friend and feel the edge on one of their new broadhead arrows. Be careful, it's SCARY.
I bought this knife because my PC bosses at work are "skeered" of big old killer knives at work and if they feel uncomforatble, I will feel unemployed! My CHL means nothing to them so I can't even have my gun in the car when I pull into the parking lot. This leaves the MINI as my only defensive tool in the event of the much feared (and overblown) Workplace Violence. I've got to say, it's still a good little knife, but I was hoping for better.

PS This post was edited when an error on my part was pointed out. Please read further in the thread concerning the relative strength of Ti vs. SS liners.

I cut it, and I cut it, and it's STILL too short!

[This message has been edited by Ken Cook (edited 02 March 1999).]
Ken i have noticed a few of the things you said, but have had no problems to date although i don't use mine much anymore.I have an old one 3 years I guess. They should have made the mini ti lined too! But it will serve you well. Mine has always been a stiff opener. My .02
FWIW, I think the M2 Mini I have is a great knife, and a perfect little brother to the full size M2 AFCK.

I haven't seen any performance letdown due to the different materials.

Fit and finish are first rate, and the M2, at least, came scary sharp.

Just another data point.


Live Free or Die

I've had my mini-AFCK in M2 high speed tool steel for 6 months, and I love it! It's a wonderful blade... sharp, strong, easily resharpened, etc.

I do agree, though, that Benchmade's quality control is spotty. While my knife has no really obvious flaws, I do know of several folks who were not so lucky.

One knife to think about in this same vein is the EDI Genesis I. In late April a new model should be hitting dealer shelves... a plain edge done up in M2 steel, with a hard black coating on the blade. The EDI's are like a better built AFCK... the G10 is nicer, the fit & finish are superlative, the blades pivot smoothly, etc. Find one at a blade or gun show, or at a dealer, and try it... you'll be pleasantly surprised.

My $0.02 worth this Sunday morning.


[This message has been edited by AJ (edited 28 February 1999).]
Thanks for the plug! We are very proud of our GENESIS folders and it makes us happy to see endorsments in the forums. Yes, we are making a LIMITED[500 pcs.] and numbered run of GENESIS in tool steel this spring. But, the steel will be A2 tool steel and the coating will be chromiun nitride. We have had great experience with A2 in testing, and feel that it has some advantages, especially when it comes time to resharpen. Chromiun Nitride is the most durable coating that we have tested to date. Very corrosion resistant, with much better durability compared to the 'bake on' paint/teflon coatings that we have tried. But, chromiun nitride is frosty silver/grey in appearence, not black. Just wanted to clear a few points up, so folks would know whats coming. We have taken orders for all 500 to our distributors all ready, and dome of the dealers are already starting lists to reserve knives. We should be shipping them this spring, late April, if murphy doesn't ambush us too bad.

Thanks again for the interest and the support.

Stay Sharp!
Will Fennell
President-EDI Knives
Hey Will,

You forgot to mention that the price is some $70 more than your ATS-34 bladed genesis.
If I remember when Benchmade did a tool steel on their AFCK's they only raised the price about $20 more, Shouln't you guys try and cut down the cost instead of driving up the price for the A-2?

After all, it can't have an edge that stays sharper too much longer than M-2, at least not for a $50 difference. Does anyone disagree?

While I would prefer A2 over ATS-34 I doubt I would pay $70 more for it, that seems like way too much of an increase.

In any case, why pick A2 for a small thin blade? What about the nonstainless CPM offerings that have high impact toughness and excellent abrasion resistance like 3V?

Okay I may be wrong, but my understanding of the liners on AFCK's is the SS is the slightly stronger of the two. The titanium is softer then the steel, and can wear a tad faster. The titanium is nice because it weighs less, and won't rust, but it does wear quicker. Which really isn't a problem with the lifetime warranty. Plus Benchmade thought the SS on the mini's would give them more strength then titanium would(if I'm remembering correctly). Just thought I'd share alittle.
I think you're right, blades. As I understand it, Benchmade originally looked for material for titanium liners for the mini, but couldn't find a good supply in that thickness. That's why they went with stainless, according to Mark McWillis.

However, in any case, I don't have any problems with using stainless for the liners. And no less an authority than Darrel Ralph has questioned the use of titanium for liners, based on titanium's rapid wear. In addition, I believe stainless is stronger but heavier than titanium of the same thickness. (hopefully, somebody will correct me if I'm wrong on any of the above).

As a result, I can't find any fault with the mini's liner execution. In general, I feel when a knife is scaled down, it is reasonable to scale down things like liner thickness, etc.


Please forgive me for saying so, but you may have made some incorrect assumptions about the Mini. Titanium is stronger by weight than steel, but it is not necessarily correct that the thinner stainless liners are weaker than the thicker Ti liners. Stainless is more hardenable, and can thus be made springier and more wear resistant, two factors that have inspired both Darrel Ralph and Alan Elishewitz to state that stainless steel may be superior to Ti for folder liners in some cases.

One of my favorite folders is a M-2 Mini that I carry when I want to pack something small but effective. It provides a great edge, and great ergonomics. I know about what I should be able to expect from it in terms of strength, which is quite a bit for a folding knife that size, and if I imagine the need for something stronger at about the same size, I carry a REKAT Pioneer. If you ever break your Mini AFCK, let us know how you did it.

I have a fully serrated mini AFCK. My only legitimate gripe (I can list a lot of illegitamate gripes
) is that the "fully" serrated blade is only about 75% serrated. There is too much plain edge near the tip.

This is a problem when you are cutting something like a steak and it's difficult to cut on the serrated part of the blade. It's also a problem if you're cutting something like heavy plastic wrap on a box and just want to gently "slash" at it to cut it. Unfortunately, you can't really use the serrated section of the blade very easily at all. In these situations, you usually end up cutting with the "tooth" where the serrations end and the plain edge begins.

I let BM know what I thought but, they said that they wanted a good amount of plain edge on the fully serrated blade. To me, it defeats the purpose of having a "fully" serrated blade.


[This message has been edited by Bernie (edited 01 March 1999).]
We must have a little miss information floating around about our knives; pricing at MSRP follows.....

Genesis 1 bead blast finished ATS-34 $140

Genesis 1 Black Ti coated ATS-34 $160

Genesis 1 Grey Chromiun Nitride coated
A2 tool steel..... $175 for a limited run of a special steel that we have to buy a small quanity of[ and pay a higher price for than if we bought A2 in larger quanity], run through the blade laser cutting, grinding, and heat treating process separately from our standard ATS-34 blades, because the different steels 'grind'and heat treat differently, we're upcharging the MSRP only $15. Oh yeah, we'll throw in the chromiun nitride coating which is an upgrade from the coating that we normally use, both in performance and cost, and we'll number the whole production run, which totals only 500 pieces. That very well be the only A2 tool steel Genesis folders we make. We are very happy with the performance of the A2, but we want to see how our customers like it. We're gonna make them, and see if ya'll like them. If they are popular we may be able to put them into the regular line-up. Maybe next year, way to early to say. If we are able to put the A2 version of the Genesis into regular production, we will re-evaulate the price structure at that point.

So, we are offering a limited run of knives featuring a blade steel and a coating that we don't normally offer, that require seperate manufacturing operations, and we are numbering the knives for those that keep up with that, all for a $15 upcharge at MSRP. Its not my place to comment on my competitors[and friends] pricing. We hope that our customers will find this price fair.

If you are looking for a lower cost Genesis, we have the Genesis 2 with molded scales[lower cost to us/you] and a single Ti liner, at MSRP $110 bead blast,...$130 coated. The Genesis 2 is only offered with our standard ATS-34 as a blade steel. I hope this answered your questions. Thanks for the interest.

Stay Sharp!
Will Fennell
President-EDI Knives

[This message has been edited by Will Fennell (edited 01 March 1999).]

What a great deal. I'm a big fan of any company that keeps pushing the envelope, especially stepping into the scary world of non-stainless (scary because too many customers don't realize how well a non-stainless can perform). Hope it works out for you!

Okay, now how 'bout that Rock Lock folder?
You're right, my bust. I was thinking it terms of tensile strength and had not considered the wear factor. I was not aware of this and I will edit the review. not to hide the mistake, just so that any who read only the review and no further will not be mislead. Thanks for pointing it out to me.

I cut it, and I cut it, and it's STILL too short!

Mr. Taylor of REKAT recently corrected me on the liner in the Carnivour. Said, he uses steel which he deems stronger than titanium, weight not withstanding.


Regarding your politically correct bosses... do you have to wear come kind of clothing such that you can't hide a larger knife? I work in an office where I am allowed to wear pretty much anything I want, fortunately. Well, within reason. I currently carry the BM Axis lock (I have heard some call it the Vortex?) inside my waistband, and no one has any idea it is there. I used to carry the BM Eclipse with 3.5 in blade (before the 840 came out), and no one knew about it either. Now, I don't whip either one of them out for every cutting task, as I also carry a small Buck pocket knife, and a Victorinox executive knife, for those mundane cutting tasks. The Axis is strictly for emergencies.

Have you considered carrying the AFCK inside your waistband? Or is that where you already carry it?

Just trying to help. It works for me very well, thought I'd suggest it.

$15 for all that is a good deal. But looking around one can find a Genesis for a little upwards of $100.

And ABC-direct is aking backorders at around $170

that is where I got the $70 difference from. Give or take. And I am not looking for a lower priced folder, I was just wondering why the difference was so much. Dont worry, you are still going to get my money.

In comparing prices, it's a good idea to compare apples to apples, and not apples to pears. For regular production knives, hardly anybody pays "list price" on the Internet, so a $20 difference in "list price" will translate to a $15, more or less, difference in the actual selling price. In the case of limited edition knives, where there may be more willing customers than there is product to satisfy them, retailers who normally sell at a discount may well charge "list price" or even add a premium. Benchmade made a small number of AFCK's in M2 last year. There were very few offered on the Internet, and there were very few dealer discounts on them. Supply and demand.