BM Mini-Griptilian: 555 vs 556

Joined
Feb 4, 2006
Messages
11
I'm looking for a good utility knife for camping and backpacking and general messing around. Reading this forum and scoping websites has pretty much convinced me that it's the Mini-Griptilian. The Doug Ritter looks cooler, but reading this site has saved me $50.

So, do I get the 555 (Thumb hole, modified sheeps foot) or 556 (modified drop point, thumb peg)? Opening it very quickly is not a huge issue for me, although I don't want something that's a hassle to open. So what are the relative advantages of the blade shapes?

Many thanks!
 
Joined
Dec 31, 2004
Messages
1,907
I'm going with two reasons for the 556. 1- I own a 555 (1st real knife) and thought the elongated opening hole was fine until I got my 1st Spyderco. BMs thumb-studs are fine, as they don't hang up on your pants pockets, etc... 2- over the years, I have become fond of drop point blades. This is purely personal preference, but between the two shapes, I like the 556.

****good news is, looks like BM has upgraded the steel to 154cm. I don't know if this effects price though.

Good luck with your new knife, though you won't go wrong either way.

Walter
 
Joined
Jan 10, 2004
Messages
1,035
The Benchmade thumbhole is beveled which makes it hard to use. I have both and the thumbstud is much nicer.
 
Joined
Feb 4, 2006
Messages
11
Thanks guys, it's great to tap into all's expertise. Any thoughts on the modified sheepsfoot blade shape vs. modified drop point?
 

ljg

Joined
Jul 14, 2004
Messages
109
I have a 555 and I like it. Generally I'm a fan of Spyderco style holes rather than thumbstuds, but I have both kinds of knives. Then mini-grip is a nice size (although the handle can be a tad short if you have big hands due to the sweep of the handle turning into a guard.)
I agree that an opening oval is not nearly as good as a round hole, but I took a file to the bevelled hole and roughed it up. This greatly improves opening the knife. I like not having thumbstuds to worry about when I strop.

I really like the modified sheepsfoot blade. I think it's a nice all around comprimise. So unlike the other folks here I'm going to say get the 555.

Good luck whatever you chose!
LJG
 
Joined
May 3, 2005
Messages
959
Well, I usually don't ask here for which one to buy but I was actually about to pull the trigger on a 555. I am specifically looking for the sheepsfoot blade... although not exactly (just a compromise; I want the AXIS). My quest is for a broad tipped Wharnncliffe blade... more or less like reverse tanto but as straight edged as possible... no upsweep.
 
Joined
Jan 21, 2006
Messages
557
CrazyGunNut said:
Thanks guys, it's great to tap into all's expertise. Any thoughts on the modified sheepsfoot blade shape vs. modified drop point?
It comes down to personal preference really. In my opinion, since both knives have Axis lock it just pushes the thumb stud/opening oval to a secondary opening option. I'm pretty new to knives myself, but I think the sheepsfoot might have a slightly stronger point--just get whatever's aesthetically pleasing to you, or just wait for some more input from other members
 

Joe Dirt

Banned
Joined
Jan 26, 2006
Messages
855
I really like the 555 and the 550. I love the blade shape better than the 556 and 551.

I also like the opening hole. I even like how the edge is beveled. Can't go wrong with either.
 
Joined
Jun 18, 2000
Messages
10,724
My thumb frequently slipped off the 555 without opening the blade, but the studs of the 556 worked everytime.
 
Joined
Nov 25, 2005
Messages
3,777
I have the 556 and find this to be easy to open with the stud, drop point is very handy.
Img_0003.jpg
 
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
496
If I were you, I'd handle both the Mini and Full size Grips to see which you think will be more useful for camping, backpacking, etc. I got my brother the Cabela's D2 Full-size Grip, and it's the perfect size for camping. The smaller version might be easier to carry/fit in a pocket better, but for general cutting purposes (even if it's just cheese and summer sausage) the Full-size seems much more convenient, and it's also the one to have if you need to build a shelter or do anything in an emergency situation.

BTW--what turned you off the Ritter Grip? I've got the M2 on order, and am really looking forward to receiving it. I love the blade design. IMHO, the sheeps foot design isn't ideal for camping/backpacking.

Cheers,
Daniel
 
Joined
Feb 4, 2006
Messages
11
expwmbt - Only backed off the Ritter b/c it cost much more, and there were some other threads on this site talking about how the 440c steel is fine for a general user, and that it takes a more hardcore knife afficionado to notice the difference w/ the better Ritter steel. Basically, if money were not an object I'd just by the Ritter, but gotta save where I can
 
Joined
Jan 5, 2006
Messages
496
I still sprung for the Ritter, as I really like the upgraded blade geometry.

Still, I suggest trying to get a feel for the Mini and Full size. You may find that although the Full-size seems a little bigger than you want the blade length makes it much more useful.

I really dig small useful knives myself, and thought the 3.5" blade would be too big, but after getting one for my brother and looking it over, it's WAY more useful of a size for hiking/camping/backpacking duties.

Cheers,
Daniel
 
Joined
Apr 7, 2002
Messages
2,167
allenC said:
My thumb frequently slipped off the 555 without opening the blade, but the studs of the 556 worked everytime.

Me too!!

The 555 was my first Benchmade, but every one since has had thumbstuds.
All twelve of them.
 
Joined
Sep 30, 2004
Messages
6,997
I don't own either, so take this with a grain of salt.
I use an Emerson CQC-10 nearly every day. It has an oval-shaped opening hole, which I like just fine. Maybe not as much as my round-hole Spydies, but I've no complaints. It's defninitely not as fast as a thumbstud, although this knife has the Wave feature so I don't mind.
On days when I'm not using the Emerson, chances are it's my BM 710, which (of course) has a thumbstud. Flicks open much faster than the Emerson (when opened using the hole, not using the Wave).

If I were going to buy a Grip, I'd get the drop point.
However... I think for my venture into this realm of the knife market, I'll probably get the Spyderco D'Allara drop point, which is Spyderco's answer to the Griptillian (and a very good comeback, I think).

Peace.
Alex.
 
Joined
Apr 7, 2002
Messages
2,167
The D'Allara may be Spyderco's answer to the Griptilian, but the thread is about Mini Griptilians.

The D'Allara is a much larger, heavier knife.
 
Joined
Oct 22, 2002
Messages
2,624
The 555HG has a larger round hole not the smaller oval hole. Awesome knife. Love BM 154 steel.
 
Joined
May 23, 2003
Messages
5,952
556, more general purpose blade shape, though I can use a tanto as a general purpose without probs

Or the Ritter
 
Joined
Jan 22, 2007
Messages
3,130
Dudes, this thread is over 2 years old. Why, in the name of all that is holy, was it resurrected?
 
Top