Anyone familiar with knives knows that the Benchmade brand is synonymous with a strong, sharp, dependable knife made of premium blade steel. The newly released HUNT line of knives by Benchmade is no exception. The Benchmade HUNT line was designed specifically for the hunter requiring the most out of their blades.
A good hunting knife will have the three following qualities: Durability, corrosion resistance, and edge retention. All three qualities play an important role in your hunting knife being able to perform the tasks you use it for. With those qualities in mind, Benchmade set out to find the perfect blade steel with the hunter in mind, and chose CPM-S30V for the entire Benchmade HUNT line.
CPM-S30V is a high carbon, high vanadium stainless steel alloy with a hardness of 58-60 HRC. The uniform grain structure of CPM-S30V steel creates a stronger blade, thereby making it a more durable knife. While the longitudinal toughness of CPM-S30V is equivalent to 440C and 154CM, the traverse toughness has been shown to be almost four (4) times higher than both 440C and 154CM steels. Traverse toughness is a measurement of the resistance the blade has to breaking and/or chipping due to side loading the blade.
Corrosion resistance of the blade is also a very important factor to consider when looking for your next hunting knife. The outdoors can be very unforgiving to steels and other knife materials. The last thing you want to see when pulling your skinning/gutting knife out of its sheath is a rusted or pitted blade. The CPM-S30V steel used in the HUNT line of knives has been tested to be equal to or better than 440C steel in most corrosive environments and has been shown to exceed the corrosion resistance of D2 steel by over 600% in lab tests.
Edge retention. While it may be the last quality we look at in this article, it certainly is not the least important to us as a hunter. We rely on a sharp knife to quickly and efficiently field dress, skin, quarter and cape out our game. A dull knife not only slows down this process, but also requires you to stop and resharpen countless times to finish up the job. Along with the blade steel, the blade edge angle also plays a part in how well the blade retains its sharp edge. All HUNT knives are sharpened to a desirable 30-35° angle. CPM-S30V has been shown to outperform both 440C and 154CM in industry tests for edge retention.
While the CPM-S30V blade steel has shown great marks for edge retention, at some point it will need to be resharpened. If for some reason you are unable to properly resharpen your blade, or you have just simply neglected it, Benchmade offers a LifeSharp service. Benchmade will resharpen your knife, inspect it for any warrantied repairs, and tune it for only a minimal fee to cover return shipping and handling.
Benchmade HUNT offers several configurations of knives to suit the needs of all outdoorsman and hunters, and all are 100% made in the USA. First up are the fixed blade configurations. All fixed blades offer a modified clip-point blade and your choice of either a G10 or Dymondwood handle.
Saddle Mountain Hunter (15007-1/15007-2)
blade length – 4.05″
blade thickness – 0.120″
overall length – 8.59″
handle thickness – 0.56″
weight – 4.09 oz. (15016-1) – 3.59 oz. (15016-2)
Big Summit Lake (15051-2)
blade length – 3.77″
blade thickness – 0.124″
overall length – 8.34″
folded length – 4.57″
handle thickness – 0.57″
weight – 4.59 oz.
Finally, we come to the AXIS® folders. The AXIS® folders offer a modified drop-point blade with dual thumb-stud, stainless steel liners, your choice of either G10 or Dymondwood handle, and Benchmade’s patented AXIS® locking mechanism. The Grizzly Creek also features a folding gut hook that deploys from the rear spine.
For more information on the all new, 100% made in the USA lineup of Benchmade HUNT knives, and to get more information on Benchmade’s LifeSharp service, stop by their website at hunt.benchmade.com/.
Crucible Industries, “Crucible CPM S30V,” dsS30Vv1 data sheet, Feb. 2010.
Benchmade Knife Company. 2014 Commercial Professional Catalog. 2014. Print.