Busse Combat Knives test at the Blade Show!

Oct 2, 1998
Jerry and I talked about doing a test at the Blade Show and we did just that. Unfortunately we could not make a big scene about it so we went out back and just whacked away at some 1" hemp rope. The test was a simple rope cutting test. He held the blade against the rope and pushed it through the hemp rope. Jerry wanted to show me that his basic line (Which I just picked up as a distributor) would do everything he claimed.

Up to this point all tests on Busse's knives where done in house without anyone outside of the Busse camp witnessing the results. Well not this time. We did this test right out in the open and many BladeForums members could watch the test. Several people came by and watched at least part of the test which went on for quite a while, nearly 3 hours!

Those who watched at least part of the test were:
Les De Asis, Kit Carson, Rob Simonich, Bob Taylor, Field & Stream magazine and many forum members plus several people I did not know.

The test was simple. We placed a 2X4 on a table and clamped it down. We made guides, to lay the rope down on the 1&1/2" track the rope would lay on, for the cut by simply drilling some screws into the wood. Then Jerry took out a HUGE roll of hemp from his van. Jennifer (Jerry's wife) and I both would count the cuts. We each had a calculator and simply added each cut as it went through.

We used a Basic #9 for the test. We marked the blade with a marker so Jerry would be able to easily see and use the same part of the blade. I was amazed Jerry wanted to do this test even though his hand is still recovering from his accident.

Anyway I will cut to the chase as I am still tired from the show and this very poorly written review is a Testament to that.

Jerry's previous rope cut test with a Basic #9 made it to 1,254 cuts. This is truly amazing but the fact was that he video taped this test and he told me the reason they stopped at that count was because he was running out of video tape. Well for our test he did not need a video tape as I witnessed the entire test from start to finish.

How many cuts did we get?
And we only stopped there because we ran out of rope!

After the 2,000th cut I was still able to shave my arm! At the 2,500 mark it lost the ability to shave but still sliced through paper really well. Lori took several pics of me shaving my arm and I will post those soon as well as the pics of the test.

Folks this is the most amazing thing I have ever scene when it comes to knives. During the test I wondered if the knife was actually just getting buffed by the rope. We even had hit the screws on the board at least 6 or so times. I was truly impressed and this has wet my appetite for a more complete test of the Basic line as soon a they ship.

I am tired and must get some sleep so look for more posts later.

Best Regards,
Mike Turber
BladeForums Site Owner and Administrator
Do it! Do it right! Do it right NOW!

Mike no edge deformation after glancing across the screws? That sounds pretty good. Are the basics convex or v-ground?


I have yet to even make my new Battle Mistress show any wear at all on either the finish or the edge.

Does the modified INFI have the same or slightly less performance capability than the regular INFI?

I'm glad I got hold of one of the BM's. Once the Basics get into regular distribution, I'm sure that ALL of the Busse line will be in even greater demand.


Chris Canis

"Tolerance is the vice of those who have no convictions of their own"
Does anyone have any ideas as to when the Basics will be available to the ELU?
"Then Jerry took out a HUGE roll of hemp from his van. Jennifer (Jerry's wife) and I both would count the cuts. We each had a calculator and simply added each cut as it went through."

Uh, are you guys sure you were at the *BLADE* Show, and not the *BUD* Show?

Seriously though, those results do seem a little hard to believe. I'm with you up until the shaving part. Was this cutting done with the same part of the blade, or using a large area/whole blade?

I got the impression that the rope was being cut like a cheff cuts carrots.
Snickersnee, I have seen other reports of Busse's INFI compared in terms of edge holding and it always comes out on top and is always refered to as being significantly better than whatever it was being compared against - which are often high-end customs. Do a little searching in the review sections both here and on KnifeForums and you can turn them up.

I am more surprised that he actually made the cuts than the performance of the knife. I would be curious to have the results of a wear resistance test by Spyderco. Sal has said before that they are willing to do stuff like this. I would love to see an INFI and an A2 model both tested. The A2 one would give a good benchmark for wear resistance as its performance vs other steels is well known.

Sal, would you do this if I sent you a BM and would I be able to release the information?

A roughly two inch section of the blade was marked with a magic marker, with vertical lines on each side of the two inch portion. This was so the rope would be cut with the same portion of the blade each time.

You are correct, Jerry cut the rope in a method similar to cutting carrots, pushing straight down with the same part of the edge each time. No slicing. No hacking. Just pushing. At the end, it looked like a the barber shop floor after the first day of basic training when everyone loses their hair. There were piles of hemp everywhere.

It was truly impressive. I'd like to see what happens with a FULL roll of rope.


Kevin Jon Schlossberg
SysOp and Administrator for BladeForums.com

Insert witty quip here
Well then, I think that warrants further investigation. That INFI stuff might actualy be something unique.

Wear resistance in and of itself is nothing impressive. I can take some simple carbon steel, make it excessively hard and case-harden it and it'll hold an edge a long time. Of course, it'll be brittle.

But these things are said to be pretty tough. Definately warrants further investigation.
I really wish I could have been there. And i am surprised CS didn't send someone to observe...or did they?!?
This is getting to be like Glock / HK USP.

Both are great - It boils down to which FEELS better to the user.

Busse sounds like it does great - But the CS feels better to me.

I mean, if I went around saying I was an Emperor because some
moistened bint had lobbed a scimitar at me, people would put me away!


It is worth checking out and look for my full review soon. I will be comparing the Busse Basic #9 with a Cold Steel Trailmaster to settle the arguement once and for all.

It truly made all 2,771 cuts and I counted each one! No BS folks this stuff is legit. Several members were their to witness the test so anyone who watched speak up.

The Basic line will be available in a few weeks.

Best Regards,
Mike Turber
BladeForums Site Owner and Administrator
Do it! Do it right! Do it right NOW!


I would be surprised if the Cold Steel is in the same class as the Busse knives. It is more then just feel, there is real performance to compare.

The 9" Busse still feels a little light to me, that is feel. If you are not using it as an axe to chop down trees, how much does it matter?

Someone will procure enough rope eventually to measure both the Busse and Cold Steel to the number of push cuts that still shave hair and cut paper.

At some point, someone will burn both handles, soak them in deet, diesel and, other stuff. Can someone measure how much force is required to pull the handles off?

With a good vice mounted properly, we should be able to flex both to a point they do not return to true and then to a point of failure. That will provide more empirical data of performance beyond feel and hype.

For the ultimate test, perhaps we need to send one of each to Cliff for side by side testing

Stay sharp,

[This message has been edited by Sid Post (edited 15 June 1999).]
The Busse line is impressive. I liked the way they felt. They are definetly a serious working knife. I do have a question, who has actually used a knife to the point of failure? I don't mean sharpening a knife until there is no blade left. Whether it is a Busse or a Trailmaster, that is a lot of knife. I think the Busse will win out in most comparisons. I still prefer a Trailmaster.
Case hardening has come up several times recently, and that got me thinking. Busse knives are coated, ceramic or something, right? If so, that might partialy explain their wear resistance. But only if there's s coating on the edge I would think.

'Can't wait for the review. I don't think I'd give up my Project 1, I like it's style of handle too much, but my intrest is certainly aroussed.

Incedently, fuel oils and fires have no effect on a Project's handle. I wouldn't want to be the one trying to yank the handle of one of those things either.
Besides the pictures I found on the WOW.com page, does anyone have some scans of the Busse 9 & Busse 3 including sheath? Please e-mail me if you do.
Ryan Malpiede
The Busse line is very impressive! and I get to drool over a kick @rss picture of a Mil. BM all this month on my Blade calendar!

"All of our knives open with one hand, in case you're busy with the other"
Ogre, there is a significant difference in performance in what has been reported about Busses INFI steel and what I have seen with regular high-carbon steels. Specific to edge holding, I can blunt the Trailmaster to the point of where I can draw it across my arm safely, after one day of heavy working. What I have read on the INFI blades is that it does take a good deal more than that. Note the Trailmaster will resharpen very easily with just a steel and a ceramic rod. The Busse blades are also reported to be very easy to resharpen as well.

Snickersnee made one of the more important points, its not the fact that the edge holding is as good as it is that is of importance, but the fact that the knife does not have a reputation for being brittle. Its not difficult to get a knife that does really well in any one of the main respects (edge holding, durability, corrosion resistance), but combining them all is somewhat difficult.

From what I have experienced with the Trailmaster so far it is a very good knife and easily worth the cost. My main problem is that I don't like the ergonomics of the slim handle (personal preference) and it seems to be lacking in durability a little. I can twist it around and pull some of the material off by hand. My main concern in regards to toughness is the tip because of the false edge. I don't think I will fault the main blade body.

Looking forward to your review Mike.

Joel..., all the regular Busse line is now available in Infi. Busse had several of each knife, except for the Battle Mistress, available for sale at the Blade show. *All* we Infi.
This was a fine question, Sid:

"Can someone measure how much force is required to pull the handles off?"

If you have a look at Cold Steel's now-famous picture of four burly gents hanging off a TrailMaster handle, you'll notice that they appear to have driven a large hex-key through the lanyard tube. Why? I figure it's to keep the thin tube from shearing and letting the Kraton pull off the tang like a sock, as is known to happen to CS knives. Ever here them mention this in their test description? I haven't either. Also have a look at how close the rope the four individuals are using comes to the base of the blade. Effect: less leverage.

I think Mr. Turber's test was a fairly good one and I hope we see more controlled experiemnting to follow on both Busse and CS knives. I'm posting this to warn of the danger when a company is "showboating" rather than performing real tests.


(Why else would a bear want a pocket?)