Enlan EL 02 and Navy K-603 review (Pic heavy)

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Oct 13, 2010
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So I picked up a few more Sanrenmu esque folders. The first is an Enlan EL 02 and the other is a Navy K-603. Here they are with my RAT3 for scale.

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Specs:

Enlan EL 02 Axis-Lock
Total Length: 21.5cm
Closed: 120 mm
Blade length: 105 mm
Blade thickness: 3.5mm
Blade material: 8Cr13mov
Handle material: (Black) Micarta
Blade hardness: 58-60HRC

Navy K-603
Lock Type: liner lock
Blade Length: 3 4/5"〔98MM〕
Blade Thickness: 1/8"〔3MM〕
Blade Material: 440C
Blade Hardness: 56-58HRC
Lock Mechanism: Monolock
Overall Length: 8 3/5"〔220MM〕
Closed Length: 4 9/10"〔125MM〕

My initial take on the Enlan was amazement. I picked it up for around ten bucks, minus shipping, and this thing is solid! It locks up well, is buttery smooth, and has a nice finish. Easily worth it's value and then some. For some reason I thought before I opened the box that the handles were G10 but they are micarta. Granted, not the best micarta, but micarta none the less. The axis lock works well and seems to be quite sturdy. My only two caveats about the Enlan EL-02 is that it tip up only carry and it seems built for left-hand carry. Nothing to worry about and nothing you can't get used to. The grind is good, feel is good, lock is good, and the price is great. Buy ten and give them to friends! Pics:

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Now for the Navy K-603. When I pulled this one out of the box (actually it came in a little camo bag) I was disappointed.

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Not only did it feel cheap, it was dirty. By dirty I don't mean a little bit of dust, I mean I'm pretty sure someone's blood spilled onto this blade. Granted, it was $12, but still. I purchased this one because it was basically a knock off of the benchmade skirmish. In 440C, how could I complain with $12? The blade was chipped when I pulled it out of its bag.

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Maybe I am being too pickey for a $12 Chinese knockoff knife, but is it really that difficult to keep a blade decent until it reaches its buyer? Anywhoozle, after cleaning it up and giving it a nice dunk in some isopropyl alcohol followed by an oil bath and polishing with microfiber cloth, it began to grow on me. It is smooth, feels good in the mitt, and the blade is huge. The liner lock barely moves under the blade, so lord knows I am going to end up shutting this thing onto my finger after heavy use. I got a feel for the steel after grinding the chip out and refinishing the edge and it at least feels like 440C. Overall, for $12, I can't complain. It wasn't what I hoped for but it certainly isn't terrible either. Pics:

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glad there are a few more chinese enthusiasts round these parts

sad to hear about the condition of the 603, but QC isnt something i really expect, to me its more of a diamond in the rough deal

id also suggest the Navy 631, came in a nylon sheath and is like a byrd cara cara but with a spydie hole, mine had held up amazingly well and has become one of the major 3 that hogs my pocket
 
Nothing like cheap Chinese knives made by companies that rip off other designs. I wouldn't carry one of those if I was given a whole box full of them.

You can spend a little bit more money and get a quality knife made by a good company.

Different strokes for different folks.
 
Well Navy and ganzo do have some rip-offs, but enlan and Sanrenmu dont and it is widely known that american companies contract work out to SanRenmu.
 
That navy doesn't look very safe but the enlan looks like a very solid and high value knife. I am a big fan of sanrenmu and kin and i hope it motivates other companies to step up in quality like taylor brands and gerber.
 
That Enlan EL 02 just keeps looking better & better.

Really regretting not picking up a couple at Exduct when they were still in stock, especially since I was there buying Sanrenmu 763s at the time.

They really sold out fast. I think the solid quality and micarta handles had a lot to do with it.
 
What makes it left-hand carry? :confused:

Just the way the blade faces when in the pocket. Mine, when in my right pocket, the tip is up and the blade would flip out away from me. I have to pull out the knife and rotate it to get to the thumbstuds. In the left pocket I just grab it and it is in position to be opened. Maybe not left-hand carry but easier lefty than righty.
 
That Enlan EL 02 just keeps looking better & better.

Really regretting not picking up a couple at Exduct when they were still in stock, especially since I was there buying Sanrenmu 763s at the time.

They really sold out fast. I think the solid quality and micarta handles had a lot to do with it.

You can get them on the bay still for under $20. Shipping still takes at least two weeks but if you buy a bunch, they can bundle shipping then you have a enough to last you and your family a lifetime.
 
Just the way the blade faces when in the pocket. Mine, when in my right pocket, the tip is up and the blade would flip out away from me. I have to pull out the knife and rotate it to get to the thumbstuds. In the left pocket I just grab it and it is in position to be opened. Maybe not left-hand carry but easier lefty than righty.

Right front pocket carry, I just pull it out & open. Can't do the same on left pocket carry & using left hand if that's what you mean.
Or perhaps you mean back pocket? If back pocket, I find left is easier.
 
Well, Enlan EL02,

I took out the thumb studs, remove the pocket clip & rebevel it. The grind is uneven (expected), most noticeable at tip & the end near choil. After many sessions, these two parts are not yet completely rebeveled.
It shows Enlan heat treat is of higher RC than Sanrenmu, based on my sharpening experienc (see my other posts)

Overall, it's a very nic EDC & with thinner bevel & hollow ground, a real slicer. I put about 25 -30 inclusive :D
 
exduct. com is one place, ebay another there arent many places that import these chinese knives
 
Not sure if they have as good a reputation, but I have had success with discoverbargain. They have the best prices that I have seen, but not quite the model selection. I have gotten a few 763's from them and they now have both EL-02 models.
 
i have a K602 as well and it seems to chip because of the pins that hold the knife together
 
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