Last week I headed for the woods and Dave headed for the desert Mountains. Both of us were anxious to put a couple of new Fallkniven knives through their paces. Dave recently picked up one the Fallkniven HK9Cx knives with the Damascus Cowry x blades. It’s unusual for someone to actually use a knife in this price range in the field, but it sure is refreshing to know someone appreciates a knife of this quality for exactly what it is. One Fine Tool!
Thursday, August 28, 2014……………
“I just returned from my favorite camp a quarter mile above the old cavalry trail over Middle March Pass in the Dragoon Mountains. I enjoyed three days and two nights of having the mountains all to myself thanks to the remote location of my little camp. After using the Fallkniven HK9cx as my only knife I can now say absolutely that this is the best all around knife I have ever owned. The more I use this knife the more I like and appreciate it.
Upon arriving in camp the first order of business was to find a Yucca plant with a good straight stalk to cut and trim for a walking stick, which was done. A good supply of dry firewood was gathered and I spent the afternoon cutting fuzz sticks for morning and evening cook fires. Although not necessary on this trip, sometimes during the wet season the only way to get dry kindling for fire starting is to split it to get to the dry inner wood, so just for an additional field test I used the HK9cx to split some kindling size sticks. This was easily accomplished due to the convex grind of the blade and required little effort.
A major thunder storm arrived briefly on the second night, (it is monsoon season here), so I broke out the emergency blanket I usually pack along, some paracord, plus a variety of small stones, found some high ground with good drainage and rigged a shelter for the night, again using the HK9cx for the work. Spent the night dry and comfortable with room for myself along with my pack and my dry morning firewood.
While I do not generally care for a guard on my sheath knives, the guard on the HK9cx is relatively small yet adequate for protection. The guard did get in the way a bit for a few food prep chores but, when I consider the sharpness I can expect from this blade, I am thinking this minimal yet adequate little guard might not be such a bad feature on this knife after all. The blade is deadly sharp out of the box and stayed that way throughout the entire camp with no attention on my part. After using the knife for everything during the entire outing I have to say there was very little, if any, deterioration of the cutting edge and when I returned home it would still slice ribbons of bond paper with ease. The Cowry X core steel in the laminated blade is truly amazing for edge retention.
The Fallkniven HK9cx probably got a bit more use than normal on this trip because I wanted to see just what it would do so I kept looking for stuff to cut. As mentioned, the more I use this knife the better I like it. A lot of thought and design went into creating the knife and I am especially impressed with the balance and feel of it in the hand. It just has to be held and used to really appreciate it. It does not appear to be a “show piece” but it is extremely well finished throughout and the real beauty of it lies in the way it feels and performs. Fallkniven calls it “Luxury in Practice”, and I have to say, they are dead right.
This really is the best knife I have ever owned.
Now I will put my own edge on the blade, at 18 degrees per side, polished out to 6000 grit, and continue the adventure. At 64 H-Rc I do not expect to experience any chipping or rolling of the Cowry X powdered steel edge, but I want to see for myself.
More to come………
Friday August 29, 2014……………………….
“I just wanted to share an update on the Fallkniven HK9cx knife.
I sharpened the blade at 18 degrees, polished to 6000 grit on my Edge Pro system, razor sharp. I have been meaning to trim out some dead branches on one of my large bushes here that have been dead for some time so they are seasoned and very hard. It was a job for a hatchet or saw, not a knife, but when I looked at it again this morning I thought, why not see what the HK9cx, Cowry X, is capable of?
The branches were extremely hard, as big around as my thumb, and there were six of them. I forced the knife blade as far into the dry wood as I could using my full strength, then twisted and torqued the blade to be able to cut deeper, continuing this until each branch was cut through and removed. This took all the effort I had and I knew I was abusing the blade with the twisting against the edge in a hard material but I wanted to see just what this treatment would do.
After I finished I cleaned up the blade and examined it under bright light. The blade would still shave, and only showed very minor edge deformation in select areas where it was twisted forcefully, but no rolling of the edge anywhere. In a very few areas where the blade received the most abuse there was some very minor chipping noticeable at the extreme edge. Nothing serious, and as mentioned the blade was still shaving sharp.
A half dozen passes with the 600 grit stone on the Edge Pro system, again at 18 degrees per side, restored the edge to the blade, followed by the 1000 grit stone and polished out to 6000 grit which brought the blade to its razor edge that it had prior to cutting the dead branches. Took all of about 15 minutes work total. All of this demonstrated to me that, when the Cowry X blade is sharpened at an extremely low angle and then abused by forceful twisting in a hard material against the edge of the blade, the edge will deform very slightly but not roll. Minor chipping can occur at those areas of extreme abuse, but this would not occur in normal use of the blade and it was easily removed in subsequent sharpening.
I feel that, under the circumstances, the Cowry X is an outstanding blade steel that holds up very well, even under extreme conditions. It feels sharper to me than any blade steel I have, including the LamCoS, Cobalt steel which was my “go to” steel for sharpness before I got the HK9cx with the Cowry X.
Once again I have an enhanced appreciation for the HK9cx and the Cowry X blade steel.
This is truly the finest knife I have ever owned and I will continue to carry it and enjoy it in daily use.