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Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by PMCsoldier, May 30, 2019.

  1. DocJD


    Jan 29, 2016
    I'd like to play with this one :

  2. DocJD


    Jan 29, 2016
    And a somewhat similar knife , with much less knowledgable dudes showing it :

  3. dirc


    Jan 31, 2018
    tops seems expensive to me, compared with the kabar becker (or just kabar overall) models
    (check out the turok model)
    and since I know you like karambits - this TDI is almost a must buy - s35vn steel, excellent
  4. Lapedog

    Lapedog Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 7, 2016
    Honestly alot of their models strike me as knives for guys who are prone to breaking their knives. As prybars with an edge they seem to perform admirably.
    bikerector likes this.
  5. eveled

    eveled Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 11, 2016
    I never thought of the TDI as a karambit. I still don’t.

    Its a knife with a curve at the handle. Not a knife with a curved blade.

    PMCsoldier. Becker has its own identity because they are designed by Ethan Becker. He has partnered with others before KaBar.

    So Becker is not just another product line from KaBar. Check out the Becker sub forum here on blade forums. Great bunch of people there. Ethan is there a lot too.
    Lapedog and dirc like this.
  6. bikerector

    bikerector Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 16, 2016
    Nope, that's right according the the subtle link I dropped in for zknives. Bark River also calls it 50-110B. Same stuff. Good user steel
  7. bikerector

    bikerector Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 16, 2016
    @PMCsoldier as you tend to like combat-ish knives, the Tops Al-Mar mini-SERE operator is a pretty sweet knife from tops. I had one for a short while from a trade package, but it's clearly not a woods or kitchen knife, so I have no use for. Maybe you already have it. I know you're not looking for recommendations but some of your other posts around the forum makes it seem like you really should have one. Handle is a little small for gorilla hands, but still fairly decent. It can still stab the shit out of an MRE :D. You could show it off to the gun/knife shop commandos.
    PMCsoldier, B Griffin and Lapedog like this.
  8. Lodd

    Lodd Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 23, 2015
    I have the TOPS BOB in 154CM. The fit and finish was perfect. The design is promising too. Sadly, I almost always leave it home in favour of other knives. The blade stock is so thick, it feels more like a chisel than a knife. It really ruins what could have been a great knife.

    Looking at the rest of their line-up, I see more knives have this problem. It's also a shame that so many of their knives are 1095 steel. And those prices!

    For me, this is one of those brands that sometimes draws my interest, but at this rate, I don't think I'll be buying another one of their products.
    Lapedog likes this.
  9. bikerector

    bikerector Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 16, 2016
    This is a very common complaint about that model.
    Lodd and Lapedog like this.
  10. Lapedog

    Lapedog Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 7, 2016
    I bought the BOB in 1095 and had the same experience. Every time I look at it all I can think is “it’s a nice knife but a bushcraft knife it certainly is not.” (I’m no Bushcraft expert but it doesn’t take one to see this.)

    Sometimes I wonder who is this Brotherhood of Bushcraft that they put their name on it.
    B Griffin, Lodd and bikerector like this.
  11. DocJD


    Jan 29, 2016
    Nope ! NOT at all a karambit . More just a pistol angled grip designed to be drawn like a sidearm and thrust forward to stab , as a simple "instinctive" backup / gun protector for cops . Proper technique for karambits is more complicated and needs much more training / practice .
  12. AntDog

    AntDog Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 3, 2001
    Nice knives and I’m a sucker for Al Mar designs.

    palonej, PMCsoldier, Lapedog and 4 others like this.
  13. BitingSarcasm


    Feb 25, 2014
    I have a TOPS Little Bugger, it's a great little EDC whittler and doesn't suffer from thick blade or grind syndrome. I sometimes carry a Wolf Pax knife/hatchet combo when hiking, and I rather like it. The hatchet is small but robust, takes and holds an edge, and the Wolf Pup is a little knife that takes care of everything the hatchet doesn't do well. I don't have a lot of TOPS, but I am happy with what I have used.
    jmh33 and DocJD like this.
  14. B Griffin

    B Griffin Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    The last I heard they had licensing issues with that one and had to discontinue it. Pity too. It was the only new one I had liked in quite some time
    bikerector likes this.
  15. Makael

    Makael KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 17, 2015
    Im a huge fan of both Tops and Becker. Both make great users and all of them will do the job they were designed to do. I will give the nod to Becker for value but the difference shrinks with the addition of upgraded scales. Both companies have a great following and great customer service. I give Tops kudos for having the ability to stop drop and roll for new models. They seem to be able to come up with a new design when tbey feel like it. If you notice lately their lineup of knives are including smaller, thinner knives with more finesse. I have zero complaints with either brand..

    The Tops Dragonfly, 3rd knife from the top is a great thin design which feels like a longer version of the Becker Bk16. Both are favorites.
    IMG_20190601_011132_848.jpg IMG_20190601_011119_929.jpg 20190601_010831.jpg 20190601_010135.jpg
  16. Makael

    Makael KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider

    Oct 17, 2015
    Looks like its available everywhere and still on Tops website. Where did you hear it?
    B Griffin and bikerector like this.
  17. CVamberbonehead


    Nov 6, 2017
    I have a Tops Tibo that I use and its a good knife. My favorite neck knife that Ive used. I think Tops is a pretty decent company with some stupid designs.
    B Griffin likes this.
  18. bobobama

    bobobama Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 15, 2017
    I've got one of these; my only TOPS knife. It is definitely sweet! Very comfortable in the hand, nice size and fairly lightweight. I got the model with the top edge sharpened, which is an option they offer. Takes it out of the all-around user mode and makes it strictly tactical. Problem is, I'm not really a tactical knife guy. My bad.

    Like it's been noted before on the forum, TOPS sheaths often leave something to be desired, and the one that comes with this knife is no exception. The sheath itself is OK but the rotating clip is not; it's a nice concept but poorly executed. Mine rotated itself right off the sheath, so I hooked up a Tek-Lok to it instead and now everything's fine.
    AntDog and bikerector like this.
  19. Jocephus1


    May 30, 2007
    I like TOPS and have a few models, but do have some gripes. Overall, I tend to prefer my ESSEE stuff though.

    It seems to me like Tops has way to many models. There's some great designs, but I think that sometimes they get lost in the shuffle. Their blades also tend to be on the thicker side, which has its pros/cons. Overall, I think their marketing/design team could be revamped.

    I did have a little issue with a Mil Spie 3.5 H-01 that I had and their service department/warranty stuff were really good, but that's the only time I've ever had an issue. They took care of it and I'm totally satisfied with my experience there.

    I've beat up the BOB, mini-scandi, Airwolfe, and Backpackers Bowie on my land, hunting, and backpacking. Overall, I've never been disappointed. (Didn't bond with the Mil Spie so I sold it)

    They're definitely what I consider a "tool", and they have some gimmick stuff that kinda raises my eyebrows, however, I don't rule them out when I'm looking around.
    bobobama likes this.
  20. B Griffin

    B Griffin Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 22, 2007
    From Craig and Leo the year it released at Blade, and then later in their face book group. I guess they got the licensing issues straightened out, or maybe they are just leaving it up until they sell all of the first batch. That's what they did with a couple of other models they ran into legal issues with years ago.

    Good I'm glad you like it. I designed that one for me personally to suit my needs. I originally wanted to just have a small run made in a good stainless steel for close-to-the-body for myself and my students, but Mike Fuller liked it and wanted to put it in production. I wanted to make a couple of tweaks after the first batch that would have improved comfort and performance a little bit, but they wouldn't do it.. They eventually did a few small runs in stainless, the last being CPM S35VN which is what I carry now. But between them not wanting to do a stainless option, not letting me do the tweaks it needs to really suit me, and the personality differences I ran into with the new leadership, I asked them to cease and desist production of it so I can do another iteration elsewhere, without having to also compete with a version of my own design I'm not 100% happy with for what it was supposed to be. The Tibos didn't get the differential heat treat. The blade was too small. That's why there were several other colors of it, but never a Black River Wash run of them.
    PNWhovian, jmh33 and CVamberbonehead like this.

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