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Review First Impressions: Benchmade 940

Discussion in 'Knife Reviews & Testing' started by Smaug, Nov 15, 2018.

  1. Smaug

    Smaug Gold Member Gold Member

    755
    Jun 30, 2003
    It was with a little trepidation that I ordered a 940 Osborne last week. I had read about bad QC @ Benchmade lately, but sometimes, things get blown out of proportion on the internet. Passed down and repeated, so it sounds like the problem is bigger than it is. That's what I was hoping for here.

    Blade shape: 10/10. Love it in pix, love it in person too. I particularly like how the swedge starts narrow and gets wider. It's a really complex blade shape, but is just really attractive to my eye.

    Grip: 8/10. The shape is good, but it's not exactly hand-filling, is it? Gerber, Spyderco, Buck and many others have done the shape better, although not as handsome.

    Action: 9/10. I flipped it open probably 150 times to wear off any sharp edges, then applied a drop of oil to each bushing and one to each Axis lock button. Wow is it smooth now, and just the right tension on the lock. The only thing I would change is to have some kind of damping so that when the lock is pulled and blade is closed, it doesn't bounce back out. It's hard to get the closing just right: it either slams shut and bounces back out, or doesn't close all the way. Maybe with some more hours of practice. I couldn't in good conscience deduct a point for this.

    Blade Steel: 10/10. I think S30V is a good compromise between hardness, stainlessness and sharpenability.

    Edge Grind: 4/10. This is the one place the 940 fell right on its face. It's got the grind like a gas station knife; feathered toward one side and kind of coarse too. It took a good while to grind a micro-bevel on the cutting edge with just the medium rods on my Sharpmaker. I shouldn't have to do this on a $183 knife. Before I received it, I thought about returning the knife if it had this problem. But I couldn't do it. Everything else is just too nice. I've heard that Benchmades are mostly hand-made. I can certainly tell the edge is hand-sharpened, but this is one area they should have a mahine do it. This is not where we want to encounter human error for the sake of charm. We want machine perfection!

    Flickability: 9/10. Only a balisong can really beat it here. The Axis lock does a great job of being both an opening and closing device. I find myself using the thumb stud just to do the speed flick, but in reality, using centripetal force is more practical on this knife.

    Value: 3/10. At this price point, it should be about flawless and have the very best materials. Although I like S30V, I feel like up here, it should have something a bit more exotic. Or should be $60 less. Also, the edge grind. They're really feeding the copycats with this kind of pricing vs. workmanship and materials. I can spend 1/3 this amount on a Spyderco, and everything is perfect.

    Fit & Finish: 8/10. Minus a couple points for the bevel grind and a bit of crunchiness in the action at first. This may seem nitpicky, but other companies' knives come super smooth, right out of the box.

    Clip: ?/10. WAY too tight, at first. It's noticeably better after an overnight clipped onto a magazine. I don't mind that it's shallow carry. It seems to be a proper spring steel. I'll reserve judgment on this until it has seen some more hours.

    Looks: 9/10. MAN does it ever look The Business.

    Cutting: ?/10. It's a little early, but it sure did a fine job on my pot roast last night! I'll update this later, when I turn it into a full-on review.

    Overall: 8/10. For now. We'll see how she holds up over time!

    Pictures later. I gotta hit the shower and bed; it's too late...
     
  2. Smaug

    Smaug Gold Member Gold Member

    755
    Jun 30, 2003
    I've been carrying this for a few days now. The action is slicking up nicely. The aggravation of the uneven bevel is nearly forgotten. (there's STILL no excuse though. ;)

    I can see why this is a classic. I don't feel the need for another Benchmade.

    I like how it can be flipped out lazily, just by pulling back the Axis lock. If I don't want to use the lock for deployment, it is easy enough to give it that quick downward jerk, then flip up, and she still pops out easily. This is one of the best fiddly knives I've ever had.

    Spydiechef just landed, so now this goes back in the box for a bit. I'll get some more miles on 'er, then do a proper video review.
     
  3. Pilsner

    Pilsner Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Oct 28, 2017
    I assume you have a 710? ;)
     
    oatmeal likes this.
  4. Smaug

    Smaug Gold Member Gold Member

    755
    Jun 30, 2003
    Looks like a 940, but with all the corners melted off... And it's discontinued.
     
    Pilsner likes this.
  5. Pilsner

    Pilsner Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Oct 28, 2017
    No no no no NO! :mad:

    The 940 looks like the ugly sister of the 710, the equivalent of a certain female presidential candidate wearing the boxiest of all possible suits! And yeah, it’s discontinued and I ain’t sellling either of mine. :p
     
    whp, Smaug and Daniel like this.
  6. sgt244

    sgt244 Gold Member Gold Member

    814
    Mar 15, 2010
    The 940 is an amazing knife... No complaints to be made on my end for the price point. If you want flawless / perfect.. get a CRK =D
    Good day sir.
     
    rexromic likes this.
  7. Smaug

    Smaug Gold Member Gold Member

    755
    Jun 30, 2003
    ...or maybe a stretched-out Griptilian? (or rather, the Griptilian is a smushed-down 710)
     
  8. Pilsner

    Pilsner Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Oct 28, 2017
    :rolleyes:

    Nope. Griptillian is simply fugly. Not as fugly as the 940 admittedly, which fell out of the fugly tree and hit every branch on the way down. :D
     
  9. sgt244

    sgt244 Gold Member Gold Member

    814
    Mar 15, 2010
    lol very true, grips are not good looking knives in any way shape or form.... They are great knives, and function well enough especially at the price point. But I need to be attracted to my blades aesthetics as well for me to enjoy carrying and using the knife.

    The 940 looks good imo...

    even the 710 was a decent looking knife, just prob gave too many people a hard time sharpening that recurve it had on it! hence they discontinued it, haha...
     
    Pilsner likes this.

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