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Old 11-10-2012, 18:16   #1
Senior Member
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 2,978
ka bar short knife review

The ka bar short knife comes with two options: partially serrated blade or not; and, leather or other material sheath.

The knife is a shortened version of the Marine Corp Ka bar.

I received the short, smooth edge version with the leather sheath.

Pros - the knife and sheath (made in Mexico) show the same high quality control for which ka bar is famous. Obviously, leather will suffer more in the field than the nylon sheath option.

Negatives. The handle is too short. I had the same complaint about the Esee-4 and replaced the scales.
The girth (swell) of the handle is insufficient. I will try to correct it by wrapping 550 cord.
I have a Mora Knife robust on the table for comparison in those two areas. The Robust is ideal on length and handle swell.
I like the carbon steel. However, it will have to undergo extensive sharpening.

I observe that the blade is nearly the same length as the ontario blackbird and about 1/2 inch longer than an Esee -4 and an inch or so longer than a Mora Robust.

The knife is distincly lighter than the Ontario blackbird or the Esee-4 because the blade is substantially smaller than either and I have no idea of whether it is full tang.

The Mora Robust is slightly lighter and balances much better in the hand.
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Old 11-30-2012, 15:39   #2
Lt Scott 14
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Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: N.W. Indiana
Posts: 723
I own the same Kabar Shorty w/ leather sheath. Been on many day hikes, deer hunting, squirrel and rabbit hunting. Never an issue, holds an edge, and use a pull through sharpener to make it keen. The size of the grip fits my hand.

Added a Mora #2, neck style(Cody Lundin inspired)with a piece of paracord. A decent knife, carbon steel also. Easy to work, and added a small paracord loop to avoid losing it on the handle. No complaints, Kabar is a little heavier on the belt, both good knives.

Enter #3. Full size Kabar USMC. Big Daddy to the shorty! Plastic sheath has a ton of mounting options, belt carry loop is well sized, like the Shorty. Used the pull through to keen up the blade, wasn't bad out of the box. Heavy compared to the others, a real tool that could survive a baton session, as long as you use the blade to work.

Enter #4. Cold Steel Bushman w/ Bowie Blade. Big knife also, used some 550 para on the handle, and crazy glued the front as no guard on the knife. Sharpened up well, but not quite the blade as the full size Kabar. did a little baton on small branches, does okay, but chips the blade, so re sharpened. Belt loop sucked, barely got on my trouser belt(BDU style-nylon), did have a little pouch on the front, so put my Altoids Survival kit inside- good carry option. Handle is hollow, so not sure what to fill up with and maybe a wine bottle cork to seal up the hole?
Just a quick review of some of my newer knives. All are pretty good, watch for specials and add as you may to your collection.
Lt.Scott 14
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