Review Viper Knives Swayback Jack (A CK Exclusive)

Discussion in 'Traditional Folders and Fixed Blades' started by Pàdruig, Apr 23, 2020.

  1. Norcaldude

    Norcaldude Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 19, 2014
    I would be very interested in a lambsfoot made by Viper or Lionsteel.
    chuck4570 and blademan 13 like this.
  2. Student762


    Mar 7, 2014
    Epic review my friend. I personally am loving the modern traditional knives that are on the market at the moment. It's a trend that I'd love to see continue and expand, provided the manufacturers maintain sensitivity to the traditional heritage and aesthetics of the patterns they revitalise, of course.
    After spending a significant time purchasing and using modern knives I've definitely become accustomed to the advantages of modern metallurgy and steels such as m390, so to see them being woven into the fabric of the most aesthetically pleasing knife manufacturing tradition (in my opinion) is a definite treat.
    chuck4570, Pàdruig, gaj999 and 2 others like this.
  3. Fire Beard

    Fire Beard Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 1, 2013
    Amazing review and fantastic pics. This thread made me a believer and I just ordered one. I’ll post pictures when it comes in. Thanks for being an enabler!
    chuck4570, Pàdruig and Pinemoon like this.
  4. Wild Ben

    Wild Ben Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 16, 2016
    IMG_2278.JPG IMG_2279.JPG Got mine yesterday! Excuse the poor photos - dark rainy day here.
    So, in a word: love it! There's really nothing to not like about it! Perfect size, solid and secure feel in hand. The action is smooth and snappy. Fit and finish couldn't be much if any better. They just totally nailed the traditional profile.
    I love the juxtaposition between the modern machined, mechanical look and the very organic look of the stag. I normally like the patina changes and easy sharpening of carbon steel, but the stag will age over time and the modern powder metal stainless is worry-free reliable.
    Speaking of the steel, normally the first thing I do with a knife is sharpen it up, but this baby is really great right out of the box! Ready to go in my pocket right away.
    A big thank you to Dylan for your write-up, no sarcasm this time! The dollars spent will be forgotten, but the quality will remain to be marveled over!
  5. Fire Beard

    Fire Beard Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 1, 2013
    @Wild Ben
    Beautiful example! I just got mine today and here it is straight from the box. I’m absolutely smitten. Just look at her, boys!

    E8528B0F-3A77-4F1F-870C-FEF84FED01C6.jpeg 7B680915-FA2C-4CAB-9D3B-377F4416FE3E.jpeg E5F63ABB-B2EA-40DA-A2AD-3CCDCE8D27ED.jpeg
    untytled, chuck4570, FOG2 and 8 others like this.
  6. AnW

    AnW Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 15, 2019
    I should have one in the mail tomorrow or Friday. I went with Micarta over stag but man those stags look so nice!
    chuck4570 and knifethetank like this.
  7. Wild Ben

    Wild Ben Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 16, 2016
    chuck4570 likes this.
  8. AnW

    AnW Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 15, 2019
    So, my OD Micarta Swayback arrived today. I'm pleased! I may use some mineral oil on the Micarta to darken it up, but I kind of like it in its natural state.


    Here it is with some of my favorites ...
    Prester John, chuck4570, FOG2 and 4 others like this.
  9. Matt_WY

    Matt_WY Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 30, 2018
    the Case swayback arrived, not bad fit and finish, blades a bit off center. Arrived sharp, without that toothy grind that seems prevalent these days with Case. Love the jigging, would have preferred the chestnut color but the red was substantially discounted and I like a good deal. Friendly pull at around 5. Only real draw back is it’s size. Feels small in hand. I’ve been carrying it last couple days but prefer the Viper. Just so much right with that knife. Even our pet husky prefers it, he’s gotten it off the counter a couple times. Note the chew marks around the lanyard hole.
    mbkr, Shurke, chuck4570 and 5 others like this.
  10. knifethetank

    knifethetank Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 18, 2018
    Looks good, mine was also on the light side and it didn’t bother me at all. Since I carry and use it often it started to darken without oil but I added mineral oil anyway. Enjoy
    chuck4570 and AnW like this.
  11. Norcaldude

    Norcaldude Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 19, 2014
    Comparison shot. Case, Viper, GEC, RR

    mbkr, chuck4570, FOG2 and 3 others like this.
  12. Pàdruig

    Pàdruig Live and Let Die Platinum Member

    Dec 1, 2016
    I meant to post these pics the other day and just plumb forgot.

    @Norcaldude very kindly sent me this RR Swayback. I have to say it's an excellent knife, especially for being as inexpensive as they are purported to be. It is a bit bigger than the Viper and is likely closer to GEC's Viper in comparison. The action is excellent though and will make for a tremendous user.

    Thanks again, my friend, I very much appreciate it.

    (I didn't get a pic of the half stop but note the pic that Norcaldude posted - the Viper has an interesting cant when at the half stop - unlike the others that are more at a right angle)



    mbkr, chuck4570, Llasi and 2 others like this.
  13. Bartleby


    Oct 28, 2005
    Nice to see the traditional Sheffield Tackler pattern modernized. I seldom find screw construction knives of interest personally, but this works well, nicely done!
    chuck4570 likes this.
  14. Norcaldude

    Norcaldude Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 19, 2014
    The RR is almost the same as the GEC in size.
    chuck4570 and Pàdruig like this.
  15. joeradza

    joeradza Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 6, 2014
    I had the Case but it was too small for my needs but overall an excellent smaller single blade knife. I have the GEC and the RR and like @Norcaldude said they are nearly identical in size although to the eye the RR is slightly thicker.
    I haven't handled the viper but if the sowbelly is any indication it has superior quality. IMG_2756-01_copy_1024x735.jpeg IMG_2849_copy_1024x769.jpg
    chuck4570, Pàdruig and Llasi like this.
  16. lambertiana

    lambertiana Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 7, 2000
    This thread just killed me. As the Borg say, resistance is futile.

    @knifeswapper This is a very well done knife. I hate to think what will happen to my wallet when you bring out the other patterns to which you alluded. I am normally very picky about stag and therefore quite hesitant to buy sight unseen, but I know that in the past you have made comments about people not needing to make specific requests, or have pictures of every last knife on your website. Based on the pictures in this thread I figured the odds were in my favor, and I am happy with what I got. I assume this is European red deer stag, most of the images look like that rather than Sambar.
    Wild Ben, chuck4570 and Pàdruig like this.
  17. chuck4570

    chuck4570 Basic Member Basic Member

    Aug 21, 2010
    Seeing a Swayback with a spear point blade would be upsetting but to me it seems like the Swayback was designed around the Wharncliffe blade, I have a Case Swayback Jack but really need to get the Gent. The Viper looks fantastic that will have to go on the list also.
  18. PirateSeulb


    Jun 6, 2017
    I am disappointed atm I got mine out the other day and noticed the tip on mine is damaged I don't know when or how it happened too is the real kicker.
  19. Ultiman

    Ultiman Gold Member Gold Member

    Oct 29, 2019
    Excellent review and quite enjoyable to read. I've been considering one of these for a little while now, and this may just put me over the edge. I'm torn between the Viper and Fox Livri, but can't find much user experience for the Livri.

    Anyone have hands-on with the Viper in micarta?
  20. AnW

    AnW Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 15, 2019
    I've got the Viper Swayback in Micarta. I like it a lot. The micarta was quite light when it was new, after a week or so of carry it had naturally darkened a bit. I will likely rub a bit of mineral oil on it today as I have some oiling to do on a number of knives. It's not as pretty as the stag, but I'm a micarta nut. I will post some photos later post oiling.

    New ...

    Week old ...

    After oiling...
    Last edited: May 16, 2020

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