Hultafors is a Swedish brand known for their reliable, state-of-the-art hand tools such as axes, popular among bushcraft and outdoor enthusiasts. Last year they decided to expand their offer of knives by two typically outdoor models – OK1 and OK4. By courtesy of Laplander.pl, we’re going to take a closer look at the first one.
CONSTRUCTION AND CRAFTSMANSHIP
The set contains the knife and a two-element sheath.
OK1 is an example of a hidden tang knife construction. It’s a partial tang, which means that a considerable portion of the blade extends into the handle (a picture below).
Infographics depicting a cross-section of the knife (based on materials provided by a member of the Internet forum knives.pl).
The knife features a drop-point blade with a scandi grind. The blade is 93 mm long, 21 mm wide, and 3 mm thick. The spine of the blade is ground flat, which makes it work well with a ferro rod. Unfortunately, the OK1 I got has a small defect / cavity in the top part of the spine, but it hasn’t affected the use of the knife.
The blade is made from Japanese carbon steel hardened to 58-60 HRC. A black electrophoretic deposition coating is to protect it from corrosion. Additionally, the blade features engraved information on the material it was made from, the logo of the manufacturer and a small scale in inches and centimeters.
Made from a durable PP plastic, a rough-textured dark-green handle is around 130 mm long. It also features the producer’s logo.
A slip guard prevents the hand from sliding down the handle onto the blade and cutting yourself. The butt is flat 😉 and can be used as e.g. a hammer.
The black sheath constists of two elements: the main plastic part to carry a knife in and a textile beltloop.
The plastic part has been equipped with a snap-on belt clip (with an extra hole to attach the holster to a button), a loop for a leash or a cord and a drainage hole in the bottom.
The aforementioned textile beltloop with a metal clasp allows for mounting the sheath on wide (up to 80cm) belts. It’s also equipped with a special “pocket” for a ferro rod. Both sides of the sheath feature the logo of Hultafors.
I’ve been using Hultafors OK1 for about two and a half months. Currently, it’s become my main knife which I take for various field trips (often accompanied by an axe). Due to its small size and weight, OK1 neither hinders nor causes any discomfort while wearing it on a belt.
The thick blade makes the knife very durable and reliable, and hence suitable for tough tasks in the field, including batoning wood, cutting, levering things up, etc.
Ok1 remains sharp for a long time and the scandi grind makes it easy to resharpen it. Interestingly, I haven’t resharpened my knife yet and it still cuts decently. The only sign of wear and tear is the abrasion of the anti-corrosion coating.
The spine of the blade is sharp enough to scrape off some fat wood to obtain excellent fire starting tinder. The spine is also perfect as a striker for a ferro rod, which is easily accesible thanks to the mentioned “pocket”.
In my opinion, the scale engraved on the blade is nothing but a fancy detail, rather esthetic than practical one. It’s difficult to find a use for it in the field. I personally used it to show the size of photographed objects (below: the knife confronted with a wolf trail).
The handle is very solid and resistant to mechanical damage. It also grips perfectly. A simple construction makes it easy to keep the knife clean.
The sheath holds the knife firmly and it provides several options for attaching it either to a belt or to a backpack with the molle system. My only concern is the plastic belt clip which started to wear out after a couple of uses. A plastic hinge is also worringly thin, but so far both the clip and the hinge work fine. However, the easiest solution to this potential problem is simply to attach the holster to a belt using the textile loop that comes along with it.
To sum up, OK1 is a great, budget friendly outdoor knife. If you’re looking for a tool you can rely on without worrying that it will get damaged, I strongly recommend the product from Hultafors. It’s much more than OK! 😉
+ a “pocket” for a ferro rod,
+ staying sharp for a long time,
+ excellent value for money.
– anti-corrosion coating coming off.