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Cold Steel Hold Out 1.

Discussion in 'Knife Reviews & Testing' started by Joshua J., Jun 19, 2012.

  1. Joshua J.

    Joshua J.

    Feb 27, 2005
    This is one of those knives that's more than a little unusual, you won't find much else out there like it. The last knife I can remember that would come close to this design was the Camillus Cuda Maxx from about eight years ago, available in 5.5" and a limited run of 7" blade lengths.

    This knife is still distinctly its own though, the overall pattern is very clean, just a single rod of thick, grippy G-10 (.530" thick) and a beautiful distal taper full flat ground AUS-8 blade (.15" bladestock). The edge and tip are about average thickness for a folder (.020" to .025" thick at the shoulder), but given the size of this knife it makes the blade (especially the tip) much more delicate than you would find on your average knife this size.
    As a result this blade will excel at kitchen duty, which is half the reason I bought it. It's approaching the Spyderco Military in cutting ability, but the taper on the spine is a little less aggressive than Spyderco puts on their premium utility folder. Still, I find it incredible to think that any production company would put this profile on a blade of this size. Cold Steel may be many things, but they are definitely not out of touch with what makes a knife cut well.
    On top of the amazing blade you have the Tri Ad lock, pretty much the best there is in regard to both strength and reliability. The knife locks open with no play in any direction, just like the 2011 Voyager series. The spring on this is stiffer than the 2011 Voyagers though, probably in large part to increase blade retention.

    The clip works very well. At first the tip of seemed excessively close to the handle scale, I was sure I would never get my thick denim pocket seam underneath of it, but to my amazement it worked! The trick is that the tip is positioned directly overtop of a hole in the handle, so your pocket seam has lots of room to fit underneath the clip even though there definitely wouldn't be enough room without the hole. The really cool thing about this is that with the tip of the clip so close to the handle scale it will be much less likely to accidentally catch on things as you're going about your day, they even made the middle section of the clip twice as tall, so if the clip is sliding along a wall or large surface, the tip itself won't be digging in trying to catch on everything.

    The jimping is nice, not overly aggressive and not excessive in quantity.
    While I don't feel that the holes in the handle are necessary, and I would have preferred that they just use deep dimples instead, they do seem to make handling the knife easier so I will say that they are a positive aspect of the design.




    Beautiful blade grind.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Thick and grippy G-10.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    Birds of a feather.

    [​IMG]

    Distal taper, and the thumb studs aren't too annoying.

    [​IMG]

    Amazing clip (and the backspacer is aluminum).

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 19, 2012
  2. Joshua J.

    Joshua J.

    Feb 27, 2005
    That was the good, new here's the bad.

    They screwed up the grind at the heel of the blade, the stock edge is dull about half an inch up from the sharpening choil. I wonder if anyone actually looked at the production prototypes? Or if the person who approved the final design was actually the same person that designed the knife? Because this is the first knife I've ever seen with a sharpening choil that has thick, flat faced blade on both sides of it.
    They should either grind the blade right or not put the sharpening choil in. It took me about an hour with a drum sander to rectify the situation, but I'm happy with the results overall.
    Yes, the thumbstuds are now permanently removed, it didn't bother me too much since I've done the same on virtually every other knife I've used.


    Useless sharpening choil.

    [​IMG]

    Post grinding, nice and sharp at the heel.

    [​IMG]

    Side view of the lock while I was putting it back together. The contact patch between the stop pin and blade looks really good.

    [​IMG]
     
  3. kingjamez

    kingjamez

    2
    Jan 4, 2010
    Great review, thanks! Is it difficult to open because of the aggressive locking mechanism?
     
  4. longbow

    longbow Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 9, 1999
    Mine is about the smoothest opening folder of the tri ad lock I've owned. Mine is sharp too all the way back to the choil. However it is BIG and long. Never carried it but bought it just to examine it. Which I did and now it sits in it's box. It is easy to open and close too. keepem sharp
     
  5. Nate805

    Nate805 Banned BANNED

    110
    May 22, 2012
    Do you think this is a better knife then the ti lite 6"?
     
  6. Joshua J.

    Joshua J.

    Feb 27, 2005
    The stiff lock just means it takes a little more effort than I'm used to in unlocking the knife, it still opens very smoothly (as mentioned, though I would still put the Voyagers ahead by a smidge).

    Is it better than the Ti Lite?
    As a cutting tool, the blade geometry, handle design and lock reliability are light-years ahead.

    As far as being a pointy thing that can open your mail they're about the same, except the Ti Lite can wave open so that might put it ahead for some people.


    Longbow, are you saying your knife arrived sharp all the way to the choil?
     
  7. czombie

    czombie

    289
    May 26, 2011
    I really really like the holdout 3.... I just think it's priced too high.

    I'll prolly pick one up anyways.
     
  8. longbow

    longbow Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 9, 1999
    Yep blade is sharp right out to the point. keepem sharp
     
  9. powernoodle

    powernoodle Power Member Gold Member

    Jul 21, 2004
    I have mixed feelings about the design. One one hand, it has unique styling which is hard to come by in the knife world these days as it seems that everything has already been done. The flip side is the lack of anything to keep your hand from sliding up the blade. The Hold Out series does have very grippy G10, at least a little jimping (albeit not very functional) and those stylistic holes on the G10 also add grip. The locks are stiff, but this just adds to the satisfying thwack you get on deployment. Thumbs up from me overall though. Thanks Joshua for your take on the Big Momma.

    [​IMG]
    Hold Out II.
     
  10. philwar

    philwar

    Mar 27, 2009
    I like the design a lot. I agree with powernoodle (but then don't I always :D) that the blade seems to need a guard of some form, but apparently the G10 manages a safe grip on its own.
    I will probably get the medium model, this one is a bit large to edc comfortably. Thx for the cutout pic btw, it shows the genius of the Tri-Ad lock once more. I never noticed how contact between the tang and the stop pin is distributed over a much larger area this way, than is the case with a conventional tang/stop pin.
     
  11. Joshua J.

    Joshua J.

    Feb 27, 2005
    The lack of a guard is part of the appeal, like a giant folding Puukko. We already have the Espada, Voyager, Spartan and Rajah with big lumpy handles, I like this one the way it is.
     
  12. philwar

    philwar

    Mar 27, 2009
    The design works visually, esthetically. For the purpose of stabbing, or just the feeling of safety, some extra way of preventing sliding forward would be nice. Effective jimping would be one way. The grippy G10 certainly helps.
    What I'm saying is, it's a trade-off. I like it the way it is too. It just looks a bit less than secure.
     
  13. whetrock

    whetrock

    Nov 13, 2010
    I like the looks of the Hold Out in general. The blade profile isn't too extreme by any means, however it is IMO a bit different than what's currently being offered from their competition. I'm actually kinda a fan of larger folders with thinner profiles. In this day and age of "hard use" this and that it's refreshing to see a folder of this size that isn't completely overbuilt.
     
  14. zeus36

    zeus36

    175
    Jan 28, 2004
    Good review! I just handled a few of these at the CS retail store. I may pick one up as it has the Triad lock.
     
  15. Confederate

    Confederate

    Sep 5, 2005
    The knife is an astounding addition to the Cold Steel line. Yes, it's better than the Ti-Lite in that the blade has more belly. But the Ti-Lite opens more quickly. The new Voyager Vaqureo also is a good tactical design as is the clip point. I think Andrew Demko's joining CS was the best thing that ever happened to the company...with the exception of the Pocket Bushmaster's problems. I love the flat grinds but miss the beatiful polished stainless steel. I also like the Voyager Tanto, a very heavy duty knife with a heavy spine and tip.
     
  16. Confederate

    Confederate

    Sep 5, 2005
    Having played around with my Hold-Out for a few days, another bad aspect about the knife is that at times it is difficult, if not impossible, to close. Opening it is a breeze; however, I'm hoping that closing it will eventually become easier.

    The size of the blade is impressive and thin. It can be used in the kitchen as well as for self defense. It's also exceedingly light and it's a pleasure just to sit around and play with. I've carried it for SD but am leaning towards a CS Voyager Vaquero and the older Voyagers/Gunsite as my standard SD knives. And while the Hold-Outs are great in the kitchen, they're a bit expensive for such use.

    [​IMG]

    A Hold-Out 1 shown with a CS 2010 Voyager 6-inch plain edge.


    [​IMG]

    Shown with the 2011 Voyager Vaquero plain edge.


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    Shown with the CS Ti-Lite 6-inch.
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2012
  17. zeus36

    zeus36

    175
    Jan 28, 2004
    The Triad lock can be too aggressive and therefore hard to release with your thumb. The Hold-Out display knife's lock bar in the Cold Steel store had to be pressed against the counter top edge to get it to close by one of the staff! It is a fairly simple design (There is a video on Youtube showing the components) and I know it can be made easier to release. I have adjusted the spring tension on three of mine to lessen the pressure required to unlock the bar, but I still get a solid lockup when flipping them open. You could remove one side scale and check the fitment of the Triad components to see why it is difficult to release.
     
  18. Splat

    Splat

    890
    Nov 19, 2006
    I own the American Lawman and HOII and it took a while to get it but after that I had no problems closing the knife. This HO is just stupid big but if that's your thing, then good for you, but I'll pass. I wish they would shorten the HOII from 4" to 3.5" blade. Then it would be as close to the perfect EDC as you could get.
     
  19. Confederate

    Confederate

    Sep 5, 2005
    The 4-inch really isn't made for most people's EDC, nor would I care much for it in a 3.5-inch blade. Cold Steel is into making BIG knives with BIG blades, and 4-inch knives are still made for defensive use or aggressive cutting. Those who want smallish blades can still get the 3-inchers (which seem to be the standard for many EDCs). I'm not going to EDC any of the Hold-Outs, though, because I can only deal with so many EDCs and I have enough.

    Does anyone else have any views of the Hold-Out? I've been hoping it would pick up a little in sales, but people are still pretty quiet about it.
     
  20. zeus36

    zeus36

    175
    Jan 28, 2004
    I just bought a Hold Out 1 and adjusted everything to my liking, even the tension on the Triad lock bar. (It flicks open quite fast now). I find it is just too long for back pocket carry as it sticks up twice as high as my other EDC models and only half the clip engages the pants material. This Hold Out may be relegated to boot carry.
    I usually carry a large Espada in my back pocket and sometimes a customized Rajah 2 depending on my attire, so I have no problems with the bigger blades. I really like them, but those knives have curved handles and blades.
    Due to the very straight design of the HO1, it's like holding a ruler in the middle when opened. I feel they should bring out a 5 inch blade in this series. 4 inches is too short- 6 inches is a bit too long for this design.
     

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