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Testing a #73 Great Eastern Phase 1

Sometimes, you have to do your own research and I’ve decided to make the sacrifice. 

I sell a fair number of Great Easterns and have yet to talk to anyone that’s actually used one!!!!  Unfortunately, it seems like most of these have turned into ‘safe queens’.   Well, let’s see if I can be objective and I’d love to hear from any of you that actually use and carry a Great Eastern.

To set some ground work let me explain that while I think Great Eastern makes some great looking knives, I can’t say that this is the only brand of knife I’d ever own.  Primarily because I’ve never actually used one and I’ve yet to come across one that seemed to be made to carry in a pocket.

One of the criticisms I’ve had about the GEC’s, from a purely ‘functional’ standpoint, has always been that the #23’s are HUGE!  There meant to be and that’s fine.  But unless you’re carrying them in a belt sheath (check out  you’d better be wearing suspenders.  That is definitely not a pocket knife.   The #53 was a major improvement, but I don’t really need more then one blade and it still feels a bit bulky in my pocket. 

When the #73 Single Blades came out I started paying attention.  The Beavertails were interesting, but I’m not a great fan of the skinning type blades.  Finally, I got the pictured knife and knew I’d hit a combination I found appealing as a carry knife.  The slim handles and the muskrat clip blade looked to be my kinda knife.  Measuring 3.75″ closed and weighing in at 2.6 ounces, it’s not a flyweight, but that’s what $3 worth of quarters weigh.  Not too bad.

Fit and finish,…. let’s get unreasonably critical. 

The cut (I’ll call it a ‘stop’) that contacts the spring wasn’t completely polished smooth.  

The closed blade doesn’t center between the liners when closed, but most important…it doesn’t contact the liner.   

The point I’m making is that I really had to look to find any cosmetic flaws to even mention.  Quite frankly, you’ll find the same in 99.99% of the production knives that are out there today.  In fact, I have a CSC 4 blade Congress that makes the fit and finish of this GEC look like a custom knife.   This is one superbly finished knife.

Now, I’ll give you my first real complaint.  I’ve been using this knife for about 2 weeks and have gone through 2 tubes of super glue.  NOT to repair the knife, but to glue my thumb nail back together.  The #23’s are probably the worst, but the Great Easterns have springs in them that are unbelievably stiff.  Once they’re opened up, you’d almost think you have a lockback.  A ladies knife it ain’t.  Unless you’ve got fingernails like a gorilla, you want to use a little caution.  You also want to make sure nothing is in the way when the blade snaps shut.  That’s another story.  One minor thing I’ve tried, is putting a drop of oil on the pivot point and I do think it may have helped.  I’m also hopeful that with a bit of use it’ll smooth out.

Enough for now, but so far, it’s looking good. 

TSA Knives, LLC

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