Laser Strike Problem - Please read

Anyone who has purchased a Laser Strike knife with the following serial numbers: 054, 056, 058, 059, 061, 062, 063, 064, 065, 066, 067

TOPS Knives did not correctly heat treat the raised area above the handle slabs and these knives will not throw sparks from true flint. This does not affect the knife in any other way. In fact, it makes the blade stronger since it is differentially treated. All serial number preceding the above numbers are heat treated correctly. If you wish to have this problem rectified, then contact Mike Fuller at TOPS Knives for instructions on how to return your knife for repair. Phone: (208)542-0113 or If you do not get a response then contact me at home: (256) 570-0175 or by cell phone (256) 441-5757.

Please be sure to check the knife for spark throwing capabilities before you return it. Any of you who are satisfied with the knife as is, then email us and Randall's Adventure & Training will send you a Swedish Military Fire Steel (same as used on the Laser Strike) as a token of our apology. Even if you decide to return the knife for repair, please contact us and we will send you a free Fire Steel to cover your shipping costs to TOPS. If you are totally upset with us, then we will refund your money.

We at Randall's Adventure & Training sincerely apologize for this error in manufacture. It is not our policy to produce or sell any product that does not perform as promised. We are holding all sales of knives in stock until they are sent back to TOPS and verified for spine and tang hardness.

Special thanks to Mr. Flanagan (Bladeforums member) for bringing this problem to our attention. Since striking true flint scratches the back portion of the knife, we are not at liberty to test every knife and have to trust that the proper manufacturing process is followed. We believe in the quality of TOPS knives and will continue to work with them on the Laser Strike project and other projects. This is simply a mistake in the process since TOPS' heat treaters undoubtedly assumed that all of TOPS knives are differentially treated.

Again, our apologies.

Jeff Randall

This information is also posted on our web site at:
Now that is integrity! A good and honest way of handling things Jeff. I am impressed, and I didn't even order a Laser Strike!
Hi Jeff: I have always believed the mark of excellence shines bright when an honest mistake takes place and the participants step up and say..hey, no problem we will correct the situation and thanks for bringing it to our attention. If I had NEVER made a mistake in my life, I might cast the first stone at anyone who did. Can you imagine how sore your arm would become.

I have used the Laser Strike for a number of tasks around the house and this weekend I'll gather the material for the bow-drill method while camping at a remote location in the Huron National Forrest.

Thank you Jeff Randall and Mike Fuller for designing and producing a product that TRULY can help save a life(s) "out there" any day of the week. Little old bump in the road, that's the way I look at it.

Fred Flanagan:)

Just got off the phone with Mike Fuller at TOPS. I have to say this is one class act gentleman. The problem with the Laser Strikes came about due to heat treating as we suspected. To make a long story short, Mike hired a new employee to do heat treating in the shop at the same time as buying a new forge. The new man was use to heat treating TOPS knives the standard way and the Laser Strikes require a special heat treating process. It was a simple over-sight on the employee which left the tang and raised area above the handles soft. Having said that, neither Mike or myself are passing the buck. We carry the ultimate responsibility of delivering a good product to the customer and that's exactly what we will be doing. We will be contacting all owners of Laser Strikes to notify them of this problem and offer a generous and quick resolution.

TOPS is working overtime to finish out more blades as we speak to replace any that slipped out. This turn around process will be very quick according to Mike.

If you have one of the above serial numbers stated in the original post, then please contact TOPS at to have your knife replaced.

Mike does not have access to a computer but he wanted me to pass on his apology and to assure everyone that TOPS will do whatever it takes to satisfy the customer.

Over the years I have dealt with a lot of folks in the cutlery industry and I have to say Mike Fuller and TOPS are definitley top of the list when it comes to integrity, service, and quality. The thing I like about this whole mess is TOPS immediately stepped up to the plate and accepted responsibility without hesitation. They're first concern is the customer - period! This situation and its resolution has simply reaffirmed my belief in companies such as TOPS knives.

The good thing about this is only 11 blades slipped past us before it was caught. Thanks Fred!

We should have Laser Strikes back in stock and ready for sale in about 2 weeks...unless you want one without the special heat treat :)


Jeff Randall
Just received a test knife from Mike Fuller at TOPS after re-heat treating. This one throws sparks like the 4th of July with true flint. Looks as though the problem has been resolved and things are back on track. We should have knives back in stock within 10 days.

Thanks for your patience.

Jeff Randall