First Time For Everything...CS RECON TANTO

Oct 20, 1999
I would first like to state that although I have only been an avid knife collector/user for the past two years, I have been able to purchase pretty much anything I wanted, as well as do to those I own, whatever my heart desires! I am an engineer, so I feel that even though it does not make me any type of expert, it allows me to better analyze whatever it is I am doing/testing/attempting. My spelling, however, does not reflect my years of higher education, so on that note I ask you to be somewhat forgiving! I plan to add a review weekly on every knife I own, or have had any experience with. I hope to learn from your comments, whether I am doing things correctly.

This week I will go over my feelings about the CS RECON TANTO. I realize that this piece may have been discussed before, but I am working a different angle here-it is a factory second!

Internet prices are terrific, and we all want as many knives for the least amount of money as possible, without sacrificing quality. I therefore decided to deal directly with CS-great people in my experience of about ten issues-when I decided to purchase a knife. So, I opted to save some money and go with the cheaper Factory Second. This knife would not be for collecting...the huge "2" on the pommel made that a reality, it would be used rather, as a cheap, all purpose, outdoor utility "toy."

This knife came to me as razor sharp as any other CS product I sharp in fact! CS and sharp factory pieces go together like bacon and eggs. The blade was mildly lubed, and was NOT in its sheath...but in a protective, mositure dissipating sleeve...good thing I guess, considering that the steel is not all that stainless, and the sheath accompanying the 2nd was not as good as the leather/kydex it would normally have shipped with.

Keeping in mind that this piece was a 2nd, I looked for ANY trace of machining marks, or heating mishaps I could find. ALL I FOUND WAS SOME UNEVENESS IN THE BLACK EPOXY COATING!!! Two small bubbles, nothing more, are all that I can say separate this piece from one I would pay twice as much for!

TIME TO CUT! And boy could this knife cut! Ok,,, belly...very impractical knife, right...maybe. I did a few things to test this piece out to verify sliced tomatos, diced carrots, chopped 2" diameter sticks, then, although not as silky, still chopped tomatos!!! I was exstatic! After putting a more utility edge on the rear half, and razor edge up front, I was able to go two months without having to do this again! And as far as functionality, due to its price, we reached for it more than other knives to do tasks for which it wasn't designed, and performed OK in nearly all situations...not a filet knife, and not a skinner(but a hell of a bone breaker!) What's more-this knife is one hell of any easy thrower!

The only gripe I have is the grip...chopping causes blisters, and it is unwieldly for delicate work. I have problems with HEAVY WeAR to my kraton as well...tossing it didn't help too much, I'm sure!

Sharp enough to thin chicken cutlets, tough enough to cut 2"x2"'s, and cool enough looking to keep the misses happy...I have nothing but good things to say about my Recon Tanto. Overall, my most used fixed blade to date...and the cheapest! (Ka-Bar was $50).

Next week I will talk about my CS Desperado..a knife for the....truly strange!

God's choices in inflicicting suffering are unsatisfactory to us, nor are they understandable, unless innocence offends him. Clearly he needs some help in directing the blind fury with which he flogs the earth...

[This message has been edited by DANGELO (edited 12 November 1999).]
The cs recon tanto is a great knife. I used mine in the field during my years as an infantry soldier. I was able to cut down sapplings and still keep an edge that would shave. The occasional crock stick touch up was all that was needed to keep it razor sharp.
Stay Sharp,