Secure-ex sheath too tight

Dec 28, 2018
Hey all,
I recently picked up a Tanto Lite; first Cold Steel blade, and first tanto. Very impressed with the knife, grippy handle, keen edge, and nicely balanced.

My only gripe is with the plastic sheath that comes with it. It’s such a tight fit and locks in so solidly that I have to yank hard to draw the knife and it’s always a two-hand operation. One of these days I’m going to lose a digit!

I’m going to build a leather sheath for it eventually, but in the meantime, has anyone modded the sheath to make a slightly less tight fit?
I have an osi like that. almost seems like it's the wrong sheath for the knife. very hard to get in unless put in perfectly. taking out impossible without opening the top wide with one hand to let it come out. not an easy task. cant carry and use it as is. someone modified a too tight secure x sheath with heat, I think, but maybe better to call cold steel and warranty it.
That’s an option for sure, but I can’t resist playing around with stuff like this myself. It seems like it *should* be able to be made to fit.
The Tanto Lite is a great inexpensive knife that can be used for self-defense, if you have a proper sheath set up. I've been using one for that since they first came out and only had a cordura sheath provided. I prefer fixed blades for that role, and the Tanto Lite is great for when I'm wearing "sweats" or running shorts and not wearing a belt to support a large Bowie. I have an advantage though, as I've been making sheaths geared for serious usage for a good 30 years now. Factory sheaths are made to fit a wide range of knives that are all similar in shape (same model), but not all similar knives will have the same fit in that factory sheath, especially if it is done in one of the thermoplastics. There are many variables in the manufacturing process so that there is absolutely no guarantee that each knife will be an exact clone of another. Key words: exact and similar. Knife manufacturers provide sheaths that will work for large numbers of knives manufactured over time, plus they make them geared for general use, as opposed to specific, while keeping the overall unit price (knife and sheath) at a competitive level. There will always be more compromises made with the sheath than with the knife, especially with the less expensive models, but some of those only need a sheath upgrade to make them highly efficient users. IMHO Cold Steel does a better job with their provided sheaths than most other manufacturers. From my interactions with LCT over the years, I know he is always striving to improve his products.

If you don't like the sheath that come with your knife, you basically have three choices; modify it, get a custom, or make your own. Modifying works sometimes, but you are already working with a compromise. Getting a custom sheath can be expensive, and also give you mixed results, depending on the makers knowledge and skill at giving you a sheath to meet your particular use. Since only you know how you will use it and what you want in a sheath, learning to make your own makes good sense. It's not that hard, but does take a little practice, good preplanning, and being able to visualize exactly what you want, then to execute it. To give you an idea, I'll enclose some pics that will show you what can be done to turn a CS Tanto Lite into a system you can bet your life on.

TL_IWBloop.jpg Lift.jpg
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Thank you very much for these observations and photos. I think I’ll have some fun messing around with the sheath and then making my own.