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Considering a Shirogorov

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by dilinger, Jul 27, 2019.

  1. gazz98

    gazz98 Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 3, 2008
    If you really want a Shiro, buy a Shiro.

    I tend to suggest to LEOs or military spend a little less in case it gets lost, stolen, etc.

    If country of origin is important to you, another vote for ZT.

    Otherwise, I tend to suggest a Cold Steel Recon 1 ~$99 or Ultimate Hunter ~$110. If you can get past the cheesy marketing, they are great knives with solid locks.
    dilinger and jlauffer like this.
  2. rxavage


    Aug 16, 2014
    The 550 is one of my absolute favorite edc knives. It’s a rugged beast, and very capable. I’d recommend it to anyone the plans on using their knife for more than opening packages and slicing apples
    dilinger likes this.
  3. dilinger

    dilinger Gold Member Gold Member Basic Member

    Jun 25, 2009
    Thanks for all of the insight, folks! I'm not really a collector of things, and tend to buy one quality item and use it regularly.

    I only own one knife, and this is it:

    This is my gun, a Nighthawk built by Joe Leher.
    archieblue, sechip, Tigerden and 2 others like this.
  4. Centermass


    Feb 25, 2016
    Cop here, too. While, like most of us, I certainly appreciate the quality of the uber high end knives, I usually stick with a more “pedestrian” Benchmade, Cold Steel, or Spyderco for work. Usually, it’s my Presidio 5200 axis auto. I like it because I t’s easy to actuate with my offside hand, with a stout enough blade that I can rely on to cut more than adequately without worrying about busting it, and it’s of a decent steel that I can sharpen back easily (154cm). Most important for me is that I won’t lose too much sleep over if it falls out on a work-related “jog”, or have to watch it skitter across the pavement if I drop it, or worry about it if I fall on it and grind it into the ground. Let’s not forget it may also end up banging around in the laundry with your uniform after one or a few of “those” shifts...

    I’m not saying DON’T get yourself a Shiro, hell, get me one too ;) but I think there are more “practical” knives for work that will serve you just as well, come with decent parts/warranty service if it’s ever needed, and you won’t have to worry so much about it on duty, when we got enough other stuff to worry about doing what we do. Just my two cents. Stay safe, brother.
    dilinger and Cosmodragoon like this.
  5. Cosmodragoon


    Jan 1, 2019
    I know that well-made higher-end knives can do amazing things but once past a certain price point, I get reluctant to use them. Part of that is me being on a budget. Part of that is the ramp of diminishing return. Being a cop can mean a lot of different kinds of work. I'd be curious to see more on the specific tasks here.

    I'm not a cop and I'm not as active as I used to be. Even so, I prefer a good budget knife that can take wear, tear, or loss without worry. Don't get me wrong. It's nice to have nice things. In the firearms community, we have something called a "barbecue gun". It's usually something fancy that we only carry on special occasions.
    dilinger likes this.
  6. Stumpy72

    Stumpy72 Basic Member Basic Member

    Jul 5, 2018
    I have a Shiro NeOn UltraLite, a 95T and a CF/M390 111. They’re all highest quality knives. That said, I wouldn’t want to put my 95T through months and years of hard use on patrol, cutting zip-ties, etc. I wouldn’t want to deal with the anguish caused by losing or snapping the tip off of my 95T. If I was in your position, I’d probably use an all-Ti ZT 0562 (Hinderer design, ZT quality, built like an Abrams tank and ~ 1/4 the price of a 95T) for work and carry my 95T when off duty.
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2019
    dilinger and Cscotttsss like this.
  7. marchone

    marchone Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 13, 2013
    I would consider a single row bearing One Bear F3 liner lock in Elmax. It’s currently the entry level Shiro and it’s built like a tank.
  8. Pilot1

    Pilot1 Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 24, 2005
    I agree with some of the others. For daily, potentially hard use, a durable knife from ZT, Spyderco, Benchmade, CS, etc will serve you well. They are also, for the most part VERY nice knives.
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2019
    dilinger likes this.
  9. cashville

    cashville Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 12, 2017
    Honestly OP already has a Zaan. I'd expect that to hold up at least as well as a ZT. If I were OP I'd stick with that and maybe grab whatever he really wants. If he ends up really wanting to buy/use Shiro on duty on occasions, so be it. Just know that the Umnumzaan is a rather robust folder. I would personally be a little more careful using the Shiro, but that's just me.
    dilinger and Sharp & Fiery like this.
  10. Sharp & Fiery

    Sharp & Fiery Always Embellish Platinum Member

    May 14, 2012
    I concur, that Zaan is an excellent folder for light to medium heavy use!!
    I would stick on the “considering” side of shirogorov’s. Because its hard to buy just one!
    I do feel like the tip on the Zaan is more robust than any Shiro, and ive owned 5 shiros, 2 i still have. Whenever i go to my bush for a walk, i leave the shiros and take a 21.
    Just my thoughts. :)
    Keep ‘em Sharp!
    dilinger likes this.
  11. Ajack60

    Ajack60 Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Apr 21, 2013
    Do you carry the Umnumzaan for work ? Can you swallow losing/ damaging a $400.00+ knife ? What’s your definition of hard use ?
    Is the three bears worth the extra money ? Only you can answer that. I have looked at them side by side from pictures to understand the difference between the two. If the physical difference isn’t enough to justify the extra money, then actually handling one is useless.
    I’ve had both, the entry level 95T and the 3 bears which I own now, and didn’t noticed a big difference between the two. I also own a F95R and a F95NL and to me, I can tell a difference between the two.
    dilinger likes this.
  12. ChazzyP

    ChazzyP Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Dec 27, 2014
    As someone very much into Shiros, I have two of them in my carpenter work user rotation. Both are older models--an SRBS F95T in M390 and a Hati on washers in that same steel. They both get used without restriction, though I don't pry with any knife nor do I cut into or against drywall, metal, or concrete with anything but my 2nd carry beater. My work users also include CRKs, RHKs, and a few other higher end knives along with numerous Spydies, BMKs, and a few ZTs. If you carry your 'Zaan for work, OP, there's no reason that the appropriate Shiro wouldn't fit the bill as well.

    As to which Shiro would work best for you, @marchone and @Ajack60 both had good suggestions with the One Bear F3 and F95NL respectively. I had 3 weeks with the F95NL World Tour knife and its Micarta inlays are great in hand and Shiro's iteration of Elmax is excellent. These SRBS knives would be easier to maintain than MRBS perhaps and while the latter might provide greater lateral stability than the former, I've not found my older SRBS Turtle to be lacking in that regard. The price point on these knives new is extremely favorable compared to the newer R Series (3 Bear) knives.

    An older Hati on washers would also be a good choice for ease of maintenance as well. Some might presume washers more stable than BBs. Hatis (half Ti) are wicked light for their size with one composite side and even the older ones feature internal lightening pockets. Buying an older knife off the Exchange, whatever model, would also be a great way to try out a model, save some $, and afford the best re-sale recovery should one decide to reverse field.

    One last note--best in hand security for Shiros IMO, goes to the F3, a liner lock with 3D scales that affords a very hand filling grip. I believe that Marchone's 1 Bear knife also has external milling similar to the Hati for even better traction.

    There's lots of Shiros to check out over at the Bears' Den thread, though the vast majority of opinions expressed therein are those of loyal Denizens.
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2019
  13. Pharmagator

    Pharmagator Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 17, 2010
    Not to beat a dead horse... and I wholeheartedly support Spyderco, ZT, and other American companies...

    but to say that purchasing a Shirogorov knife is upholding the 'Putin' government... pfft.... believe it or not, the Russian economy is much more capitalistic than say, Communist China...

    Now I personally refuse to purchase knives made in China... because I refuse to support that communist dictatorship... but I will not libel a outstanding knife company just because their leader is a strong-man heading toward dictatorship...

    again... PFFT!!!!
    dilinger and ChazzyP like this.
  14. CPP

    CPP Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 8, 2014
    I second @ChazzyP's recommendation for a an F3, in particular the F3R which is a folding knife that feels like a fixed blade in hand due to its contoured handles. That said, it is thicker than an F95 as it is a liner lock so it might not carry as discretely. It is more than the F3 base model so you would be putting more money in Putin's pocket. Shiro no longer uses the One, Two and Three Bear designations as there was beginning to be overlap.
    dilinger, ChazzyP and Pharmagator like this.
  15. JimMD

    JimMD Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 6, 2017
    I think you've made a great choice if you're OK with the price, and I presume you are. The Shiro F3 is a liner lock with the same blade and a thicker handle, in case that would be preferable. I love the grip on my F3R. The only knife whose handle grip I prefer to it is the Koenig Arius, and for myself in your circumstances, I'd probably prefer the Arius. The base models are less expensive, although harder to come by. But my F3R is one of my favorite knives at any price. It's thinner behind the edge than the Arius but still with a sturdy blade.
  16. JimMD

    JimMD Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 6, 2017
    Didn’t see this before I posted below you, but clearly I agree on the point that the F3/F3R has a great grip, one of the best.
    dilinger, ChazzyP and CPP like this.
  17. AshKramer

    AshKramer Gold Member Gold Member

    May 7, 2019
    I couldn't agree more. No knife I own feels as perfect in my hand as my F3. Many feel good, some feel great, but the F3 is on another level. Probably why I carry it so much.
  18. dilinger

    dilinger Gold Member Gold Member Basic Member

    Jun 25, 2009
    Thanks for all the replies, gents!
    mpjustin likes this.
  19. Victorian Squid

    Victorian Squid Gold Member Gold Member

    May 9, 2017
    Everybody is going to have an opinion on a "user" knife, I suppose it depends on how much use it gets as a first responder type of knife. It sounds to me like hard use, but not stabbing a burning tree and using the knife to climb on.

    Shiros are among the best production knives out there. But already you're looking at bearings in most and with anything but the T's, liner locks. Most people would nix both of these things for a hard use knife.

    Nothing feels like Russian knives, they're unique. And, the Russians like them big.The US distributorship is Recon1, I don't think anybody else is "official". I'd feel remiss in not pointing you to look at Cheburkov knives, which are typically frame lock/bearings and have similar action, full flat grinds and happen to sell for a lot less than Shiros. Check fromrussiawithknives.com for Cheburkov - first time there's been an easy source. If you want a Chinese sourced Russian assembled knife, then CKF has some pretty nice midrange price models in collaboration with fantastic makers.

    For an American Shiro, check out US made Edgar Cole knives. (review from my buddy Frank) They run on PBW's, which might be a better hard use choice. They're frame locks, and also a bit less than a Shiro with very similar ergonomics. I'd assume you're more than familiar with every hard use choice - and I see the usual suspects mentioned here. If you're sold on the Shiro but haven't had one in hand for long - I'd recommend trying to find one on the secondary, and not spending extra for roller bearings etc. until you know you're sold. Another advantage is that the older frame locks and washer models for some reason aren't as desirable (the action on PBW's can be insanely hydraulic) so they can be had for $600-700ish easy. Most Shiros, even the CD's take a hit on the secondary, I've taken a bath on a few of the higher end versions. This is my F3R with Vanax 37 - which I started to sell a few days ago and snapped out of it! It's $900ish on Recon1, I'd need to sell it for about $120 less to move it. The advantage here is the Vanax is rare, most are M390.


    I could go on and on with makers I'd recommend, but figure you've pretty much honed in on the size and style of knife - so I'm just mentioning those that are very similar.
    Pharmagator likes this.

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