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OKC Blackbird SK-5 vs new Ka-Bar BK-62

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by natchezz, May 17, 2019.

  1. natchezz

    natchezz Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 6, 2006
    I have a SK-5 and I'm contemplating a BK-62 purchase, but the more I read about the new Ka-Bar I don't see where it really offers anything better than the OKC. If you have and/or used both, I'd like to read about how you'd compare the two. Both are FFG and 5" spearpoints. The BK-62 1095 is probably easier to sharpen than the stainless SK-5, but needs more attention to keep it from rusting. Maybe the 62 is one of those knives destined to have a cult following because of the great H Kephart?
    vba likes this.
  2. Brad "the butcher"

    Brad "the butcher"

    Dec 15, 2008
    Sk5 is not stainless and the blackbird is clunky with ok fit finish
    The 62 is a slicing comfortable light user with great ergonomics better steel imop, it is a perfect belt and camp knife for many uses for hunting fishing skinning cooking
  3. sabre cat

    sabre cat Basic Member Basic Member

    Jul 4, 2014
    My understanding it is 154 CM.
    vba likes this.
  4. knarfeng

    knarfeng senex morosus moderator Staff Member Super Mod Moderator

    Jul 30, 2006
    There is a Japanese alloy called SK5. It's reasonably close to 1085 carbon steel in composition. However, that's not the topic here.

    Ontario makes a knife they call "The Blackbird SK-5". The blade steel for that knife is 154CM
  5. Bad Ninja

    Bad Ninja

    Dec 19, 2018
    Everyone is getting into the Kephart game and squeezing it for all the money they can get.
    Excellent design.
    Fit and finish better be on point at those prices.
    If it isn't, the Condor version would still be my choice for the money.
  6. cbach8tw

    cbach8tw Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 9, 2006
    The Becker Kephart has peaked my interest, especially with the handle specs, but if Condor opts to offer their Kephart in 1095, as I believe I may heard, then I wonder if that is a good choice to try, much better ergonomics than the Ontario, and still less than the Becker. Anyone else hear if Condor will upgrade it to 1095?
    Last edited: May 18, 2019
  7. Bad Ninja

    Bad Ninja

    Dec 19, 2018
    It's already an excellent blade in 1075, especially for the tasks it was designed for.
    And at under $60 it's a fantastic deal and a helluva field knife.
  8. 22-rimfire

    22-rimfire Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 20, 2005
    The Condor Kephart needs edge thinning for it to be reasonably slicey. As built, it doesn't perform very well in the cutting department. The Becker BK-62 is a great knife if you are comfortable with the 5" blade length which I am. Is the Becker worth double the price of the Condor? Probably.

    I believe the Condor Mini Kephart (Companion I believe) is done in 1095. Haven't seen it listed yet retail and I will probably get one.
    Uncle Timbo likes this.
  9. bikerector

    bikerector KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Nov 16, 2016
    The handles are hugely different, and that's as important as the blade shape making them very different knives. The OKC blackbird has been touted as a great rendition of the Kephart design with a modern take in that it has a very different handle than the original. The BK62 is as close to the original design as you can get using the manufacturing capabilities that Kabar has available.

    Keep in mind, 1095 Cro-Van isn't really like standard 1095 so there will be some difference between it and condor's 1095.
    http://zknives.com/knives/steels/steelgraph.php?nm=1095,1095 Cro-Van,1095CV&ni=360,380,2363

    They're all fair values for what you get, I have the BK62 and have had the condor. The condor did not fit my hand at all and created bad hot spots. The OKC simply is a bad design for how I use a woods knife since anything with an aggressive pinky ramp is a negative for reverse-grip for chest-lever cutting.

    My bushcraft MK II from LT is still my favorite, but it's in a much different price bracket than the OKC and BK62.
    vba, Uncle Timbo and natchezz like this.
  10. justjed


    Oct 23, 2010
    1095Cro-Van is also known as 0170-6c, which is also known as Carbon-V. Good stuff, easy to sharpen, takes a fine edge, and holds it acceptably well. I have a BK-4 and a BK-5 in this steel, and it's excellent, in my opinion. However, edge geometry and proper heat treatment are more important than the steel type. Kabar does a good job in this regard. If I wanted another 5" fixed blade(I already have several), I'd give the BK-62 a good look. Excellent, time tested design...
    vba likes this.
  11. SALTY

    SALTY Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 19, 2000
    As for the SK5 and BK62, I own all three - as the Condor has to be included.
    That being said, and nit just because I am a Beckerhead, I like the BK62 best.
    The Becker Kephart is the most authenticate replication and is made of carbon steel. Carbon steel has soul and the 1095 CroVan has proven itself to me as the right blend of toughness, durability and easy for an non-expert sharpener such as myself to keep keen.

    The SK5, a very good knife in it's own right, is larger and trespasses upon the terrain already claimed by larger, more robust, tools that I have - can anyone say BK2, BK7, BK9? You get the idea. Smaller and we are now in the realm of good folders and dedicated slicers. The Becker BK62 hits the sweet spot that Horace obviously recognized as, well the sweet spot.
    Last edited: May 19, 2019
    vba and natchezz like this.
  12. Blue Sky

    Blue Sky Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 16, 2002
    I suggest anyone interested in the SK5 do an image search and review actual pics instead of just stock website artwork. They look a little different, and better, in real life IMO. Looks aren’t everything of course, but if you’re on the fence maybe it makes a difference.
    vba likes this.
  13. bearfacedkiller


    Jan 23, 2014
    Here is a comparison pic. They are really quite different. I like both. The Becker is a Kephart and the Blackbird is a kephart like survival knife.


    vba, Uncle Timbo, AmosPaul and 5 others like this.
  14. Blue Sky

    Blue Sky Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 16, 2002
    ^^Nice, thanks bfk
  15. eveled

    eveled Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 11, 2016
    Looks like the 62 is the only one with a tapered tang. From experience I can say it is well balanced as a result. Also the handle is perfect in its simplicity. The 62 is a joy to use and carry.
    vba, Uncle Timbo and bikerector like this.
  16. SALTY

    SALTY Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 19, 2000
    Not a bad one in the bunch, but the BK62 just has that feel.
    eveled and Uncle Timbo like this.
  17. bearfacedkiller


    Jan 23, 2014
    -Sharp spine.
    -Stainless steel.
    -Large, hand filling handle.
    -Quality USA made nylon sheath with molle.

    -Natural walnut handle that feels nice.
    -Tapered tang.
    -Decent quality USA made leather sheath.

    The Blackbird's handle is comfortable, hand filling and very secure. A typically blocky Ontario handle. Good for a survival knife because you are not apt to hurt yourself while using it. Unfortunately it favors just the hammer grip for me.

    The BK62 has a thin but comfortable handle that works in a variety of grips. It is not stabilized wood so it will need to be cared for. Stabilized wood is nice but some oiled walnut feels great in the hand. I find the Becker handle much more versatile.

    The Ontario sheath is nylon and good quality. It has a some felt/fabric in the sleeve so it has no rattle at all. The Becker sheath is decent. Definitely better than the standard Kabar sheaths. It fits the BK62 very well.

    The BK62 is more my style and it is a dream to use. It would be a good camping, bushcraft or hunting knife. I bought the Blackbird because it is a stainless kephart blade. It is 1/8 inch of 154cm and flat ground. It is a nice bushcraft/survival knife for our wet spring weather.

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