cheap cold-steel

Discussion in 'Blades' started by Tango3, Jan 7, 2008.

  1. Tango3

    Tango3 Aimless wanderer

    Cold -Steel is my first foray into decent quality knives, a good friend always had a tanto on the night stand that was scary sharp.I see a rash of dirt cheap cold steel copies on e-bay How do you tell the real deal ??Price? are the san mai knives the real good quality cold steel knives? ( I'm not very knowledgable about quality knives: Is cold steel considered a quality knife?( their torture tests seem to be pretty impressive).
  2. Valkman

    Valkman Knifemaker Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    It's funny that people would copy CS since CS has copied so many. No, I don't like CS or the owner. You can do much better!
  3. Brokor

    Brokor Live Free or Cry Moderator Site Supporter+++ Founding Member

    Cold Steel is impressive; I have carried one for about 15 years now, and have a few models. The Gunsight tanto is amazing, and I have stabbed through many quarters showing it off. I carry a small Voyager folder currently, and it holds an edge very well.

    For the money, it beats most knives out there for twice the price. Are there better knives out there? Wouldn't doubt it. I just can't justify spending $200 on a blade. Unless it's a sword.
  4. Tango3

    Tango3 Aimless wanderer

    thanks B, yes I feel the same way, its a tool, I'll never use a knife as a pry bar (I hope).Reading "knife boards"Seems to be some bad blood between Lyn thompson and some of the custom makers...I know you can't get a $300 knife for $65.00 on ebay...or a stingray wrapped chromium unobtanium hand finished blade,but a trailmaster, tanto or military is a"cut above"my simple issue kabar..
  5. Brokor

    Brokor Live Free or Cry Moderator Site Supporter+++ Founding Member

    Haha, I hear ya. My dad still carries an old Buck pocket knife that he bought for about $20. He's had that thing for a half a century, I swear...long time.

    I don't know what some of these guys are doing buying a $400 pocket knife, but that's consumer capitalism for you. I think that Melbo has a few nice ones that are borderline... ;) Of course, I would love to buy a Llewelyn one of these days. There's just something about the design and functionality of a knife that draws me in -but above all, PRACTICALITY wins. If I can get away with an AUS-8 Coldsteel that keeps a razor edge and never folds on my fingers, that's fine. My issue is with a brandname knife company that sells "adequate" level knives at ridiculous prices. And then some stooge says something like: "...but it costs like, eighteen thousand dollars, it MUST be a terriffic knife!"


    In all fairness, the ones that I have seen Melbo post are all nice knives. But, I'll stick with my Coldsteel. :)
  6. Valkman

    Valkman Knifemaker Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Now I love this thread and agree with everything in it! W00T!
  7. Tango3

    Tango3 Aimless wanderer

    Hey you make nice stuff,No ones denying a beatifully crafted quality hand made knife is a thing to be coveted.We're just saying sometimes "good" is enough....
  8. DesertDawg

    DesertDawg Monkey+++

    I think that "Cold Steel" knives have been over-rated, but they ARE of high quality.

    I don't know if they still do this, but "Cold Steel" used to show up at the major gun shows, and they'd often have a large box that was filled with "seconds". I bought a "Ranger" (I think that's what it's called) that was a "second", and couldn't find a thing wrong with it! The "firsts" were selling for about $100 at the time, but the "seconds" were going for $25, with a nylon scabbard!
  9. Valkman

    Valkman Knifemaker Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Well that's pretty insulting, not to mention wrong. Many are happy with whatever they can buy at Wal-Mart but many are not. To compare cheap production knives with customs is ridiculous and to say they're just as good shows total ignorance of the subject. To say a $30 folder is as good as a $400 Strider really shows ignorance and the fact you've never owned a Strider - you're making assumptions based on what you've read and not what you've owned. When that $30 POS is broken and laying the dirt the Strider will still be going strong - but you'd know that if you ever owned one.

    Speaking of customs, everyone who buys them now does so from "snob appeal". Man. talk about insulting a bunch of people, including those here who've bought my knives! Funny how they talk about "treasured knives" when no one would talk about a $30 knife that way. Customs are made to be one-of-a-kind and whether used or not mean something special to the owner. Thank God many do not have this totally ignorant POV and see customs as something they really enjoy owning.
  10. hartage

    hartage Monkey+++

    Treasured, one-of-a-kind, custom these are same words lavished on rolls royces, lambos and other high-end cars jewelry and other pricy items. The main draw being rarity and frankly price. I choose to use the words "snob appeal" to describe the draw. You can use whatever words you want to.

    I don't mean to insult the people willing to spend money on expensive knives. This thread is "cheap cold-steel" and my intention was to ease those that don't want to spend $400 on a knife.

    I wanted to point out that the expensive knives that are 14 or so times more in price are not 1400 percent better. Are expensive knives more durable ? yes but the breaking strength of the "superior" steels used are single or tens of percentage points better. They may be 10% stronger yes but not 14 times stronger. Sharpening they may be rockewell 59-61 instead of 57-59. They might cut 30 feet of cardboard before dulling instead of 25 feet.

    Those buying cold steel knives are not going to have some toilet paper fragile knife that will melt at the first rains. Compared to upper end knives cold steel knives in the real world will have to be sharpened a tad bit more often thats about it. 95% or better performance of the high end knives at fractions of the price. Those of us with cold steel or crkt and such budgets don't need to feel like we are buying garbage. In the real world our knives will accomplish 100% of the things a knife is used for. Just not as nice, or as pretty, or as rare.
  11. hartage

    hartage Monkey+++

    Valkman, after reading your post again I guess your only issue with it is just the choice of word "snob". Perhaps I could have used a better word to describe the draw to rarity. I'll just delete that post.
  12. Valkman

    Valkman Knifemaker Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    My problem with CS is the owner. I have never handled a CS knife and never will because he is a slug who (with a couple of others) has gone after Mick Strider for no apparent reason other than jealousy. When you buy a CS knife you're supporting a guy who has ripped off other's designs and has put himself in the catagory of scumbag to a lot of us in the knife world.

    I have no problem with cheaper knives - I own many of them including Case, Spyderco, Buck and others. I also own Benchmade, Emerson and Strider and they are way better than the cheaper ones - you get what you pay for. But I don't buy from companies where I don't like the owner and CS is in that catagory.
  13. phishi

    phishi Psy-Ops Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    If I may add something here.......

    Politics aside, I do not believe that Cold Steele makes a superior blade to others whom I would rank in the same price range. Companies such as Columbia River Knife and Tool, Kershaw, Buck, SOG, Spyderco, Gerber or Benchmade I would rank higher in quality and design. In some cases I feel this applies to only one or two blades (such as the SOG Seal line vs. the rest of the company's current offering), in other cases it spreads to most of what the company offers (such as Benchmade or Columbia River Knife and Tool).

    Tango, you did not specify what you where hoping to do with the blade. You mentioned some of the CS Tantos, but in my opinion this is a better fighting knife than a survival knife. Defining what you want the blade to do might be better than just purchasing a blade for a feeling of nostalgia.....

    The tantos that CS offers did define a period of knife design. In their day they where well made, however, I'm not impressed with some of their new offerings. Blades I might be tempted to carry include some of their original Peace Keeper push daggers and the SRK. That being said, I can think of knives from any of the above companies that I would choose first for either concealed carry or for camping/survival.

    In my opinion, most CS designs are poorly executed, either in shape, feel, or materials used. While their designs would do in a pinch, they are a far cry from what would be my first choice.

    Just my .02,

    Closing note: +1 for what Valkman has said this far. CS has some poor business practices which I personally find hard to support. It will be a long time before they see my money in their pockets.
  14. Tango3

    Tango3 Aimless wanderer

    I had no idea behind the bad feelings aimed at thompson from what I've read, now I have a better feel for the situation.Guess I was looking for more of a "fighter",saw some nice folfding crkt's at fleet tonight, I los my gerber LSt (and my spyderco, years ago)being as we dont have ccw , i would like a quality folder the spydercos are scary sharp but I don'twant to live with a full serrated blade(too limiting in my opinion.) Knives are a relatively cheap treat so like most folks I have a shoe box full of of buck shrade,camilius etc, I carry my simple swiss army; none really satify that "itch ". . .
    Someday I would like to own a custom. remembering my buddy's exquisitely sharp CS tanto, it was some thing I aways thought thought would make a bloody mess as a slashing weapon. A big bowie should handle chopping duty in the woods and personal protection."'Ats not a knoife mate!"
    " 'Ats a knoife!"
    Let me say I haveabsolutely No knife training, all I've ever heard is there is no real "winner"in a "knife fight" one goes to the morgue the other to the hospital, think I'd rather be shot than slashed with a razor...
    So I would never knowingly get into a "knife fight", but as a hidden last ditch weapon, I'd rather have at least a folder available,
  15. hartage

    hartage Monkey+++

    Tango3 if you want a folder try crkt b.u.l.l. It's the fastest blade deploying folder I've come across. There is a spur one the end of the knife where the blade connects to the handle. (not the thumb notch most people use) Using your thumb the blade can be deployed so fast it sounds like a switchblade. For some reason the proportions on the knife just feels right. Ignore the $39 price of it (even if it sounds cheap) and at least try the knife. I've had it daily in my pocket with coins for the past 3 years and still looks new. Not a scratch on it.
  16. Brokor

    Brokor Live Free or Cry Moderator Site Supporter+++ Founding Member

    I disagree with you, Phishi. I don't see Gerber as being anywhere near the same quality for strength and durability as Cold Steel. I have three Gerber Knives (two as gifts), and none of them come close to standing up to any of my CS blades. I have taken my old CS tanto gunsight out and stabbed through dozens of quarters, old washing machine lids, and even a couple parts on automobiles, like car doors and hoods. It is still perfectly sharp and the tip is just as it was on the day I got it. I have had other tantos, by numerous manufacturers, and none of them can do the same thing.

    What does all this mean? Will I ever get attacked by a car or a washing machine, NO. It shows durability. Now, I'm not saying CS is the greatest blade ever...but I have never had one break in the 15 years or so I have owned them. And the Gerbers? Only one is functional today. I like the Gerber multitools, however. I own two of those, and the tools work fine.

    I am no expert by far. I consider Valk and others here who actually make knives to be far more capable of giving educated opinions, but I also see the fact that their thoughts come from a different perspective. I do not make knives. I have only used them. I do not compete with huge companies, and I do not try to compare similar quality knives based on personal preference -I try to guage what the best blade could be that is within my price range, BUT I will not lavish myself with a BRANDNAME knife just because it retails for more cash, either. A quality blade which is hand made, however...that's another story. I would be willing to invest a little more for one because I know that time and care has gone into it, and I would test it out and see how well it functions. But, like I said, I am no expert. I only know what I have used and what hasn't worked out.

    The owner of CS may very well be an idiot, but I'll be damned if the blades aren't decent and priced well. It's not like the guy is funding black ops programs and donating to anti-gun lobbyists. ;)
  17. Seacowboys

    Seacowboys Senior Member Founding Member

    I got an old Cold Steel knife that is sort of an over-sized version of the K-Bar with a half-serrated blade. It has gone through so much abuse that the serrated blade is now gone but it still hacks away and chops and keeps an edge pretty good. It was never a fancy knife (I own some fancy knives, even a couple of Valkman's fine blades), but it is a good utility knife that has served me well through abuse that I would never subject one of my Randalls too. That old CS is my camp knife. I dig a fire trench with it , cut brush, shave tender, skin a squirrel, camp stuff. It does the job just fine and BTW, I am too a knife snob!
  18. Tango3

    Tango3 Aimless wanderer

    Crkt bull looks like "just the ticket",thanks for the heads up!Hartage:) [beer][beer]
  19. phishi

    phishi Psy-Ops Moderator Emeritus Founding Member

    Brokor, Part of our agree to disagree probably stems from perspective. I do not know which Gerbers you have, but I would guess that they are fairly new designs, ones made in the last decade or so. If that is true, then I would have to agree that those blades do leave something to be desired in terms of design or execution. These are not the Gerbers of the 70's or 80's........

    That being said, I believe that CS has slipped a bit also. The Tantos that put this company on the map, during the same time frame, are still available, but the newer designs are lacking IMO. They don't feel good in my hands, seem to have features which I do not desire (Or conversely, lack feature that I do desire), or seem to be poorly executed designs. As such, I find myself turning elsewhere, even to higher end makers, in an effort to meet my needs.

    Perhaps it is not fair to just target CS, as these complaints of mine I find to be systemic across the knife industry. For instance, SOG of the late 80's, early 90's used to make some great blades. Their Tomcat folder was top of the line for design and execution. Their Seal Pup was what I used to carry on my pack and what I have personally handed to two different soldiers going into harms way. That being said, their newer designs are poor at best IMO, and after holding a late production Seal Pup while sitting in Melbo's truck one afternoon, I must say their quality control has slipped as the grind line on that blade was all over hell's half acre when compared from one side to the other.............I'm pretty sure that they won't be seeing my cash any time soon either.

    There are very few companies who makes a complete line of blades that I feel are up to my expectations. There are many companies that make one or two blades which I find to be outstanding. CS, IMO, offers nothing that can't be found by another maker. As for the hype of cutting metal, I've got a twelve dollar pair of EMT shears that will do the same thing.......

    Parting thought, few years ago, in response to the Strider add where a guy batons a Strider blade through a roof of a car, some knife rag did some similar tests with a series of production blades. I believe that rather than baton, they did multiple ice pick grip stabs into the hood of a Honda Civic to see if the blade would break, and to test for edge retention. All the knives in the test passed the hood stick without breaking, and then held their own in the kitchen preparing dinner. I say this as I do not believe that CS alone holds the title of king of stabbing metal objects.

    Would some knives fail the tests you discribe, yes. Would other knives pass, yes. Would some knives surpass CS designs and continue to function in conditions which a CS blade had already thrown in the towel, sure......

    In the end it comes down to what you think you knife needs to do and how much you are willing to pay for it. If CS fills your requirements, good, go get some. I just think that there are equal and or better companies out there in the same price range. Ones who make better knives, and engage in better business practices.

    Again, just my .02,
  20. Bear

    Bear Monkey+++ Founding Member Iron Monkey

    Too much "knife drama" in the world today....[boozingbuddies]

    The one I use 100% of the time for 99% of my cutting chores... simple Victorinox... one blade and a can opener... oh and the tweezers came in mighty handy more than a couple times... I can do without the tooth pick :0)

    Yeah... hard for me to hold or own a knife from a owner or make I just don't respect... most of those are all gone now... except for a couple that are still looking for homes....

    Personal choice though... nowadays... simple works... no matter what the price... must just be turning into an old fart....[lolol]

    (except for the simple tools I forge out of W2, 5160, 52100, 1084 or 1095... those are for fun ! :0)[beer]
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