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A Review of the Benchmade 15500 Meatcrafter Knife

I finally got my hands on the elusive Meatcrafter knife. I have been using Benchmade knives for several years – started with the Hidden Canyon Hunter, then the Crooked River, and lastly the Altitude.  Each one was well designed, and have been an indispensable part of my kill kit at one point.  However, the Meatcrafter takes the cake.  Heck, you could probably even use it as a cake knife in a pinch.

Unpacking

First thing I noticed when I unpacked it was “holy $#@t this thing is sharp!”  All of my Benchmade knives were sharp from the get-go, but this was something special.  The Meatcrafter has a slightly sharper edge than normal with their new “Select Edge” 14 degree edge.  We used it to slice up some venison summer sausage during a recent trip and it was like a hot knife through butter. So much so, that when I went to wipe it with a paper towel a little later I managed to fillet my finger.  Be careful with this one!

Even though this has a finer edge than your typical Benchmade knives, the edge has held up well so far without a touch up.  The CPM-154 steel is one of the most premium steels you can get, and I can see why.  

Size and Stiffness

Despite the large size, I’m tempted to bring this one into my backcountry pack.  While the over six-inch blade is large, the profile and stiff, yet flexible blade would do well with quartering or de-boning any large game.  The (just over) eleven inch knife would disappear in your pack.  The Meatcrafter also doubles as a damn-good fillet knife as well.  Whether covered in elk blood or fish slime, the santoprene handle helps you keep control. 

Kitchen and Kill Kit

The Meatcrafter is equally at home in the kitchen as it is in the backcountry.  If you want to slice the thinnest tomato slices you’ve ever seen, this is a good knife to do it.  Right after that it’ll debone that quarter you just brought in, or perfectly trim that backstrap. It really is an all-around workhorse.

While for a while the Meatcrafter was the unicorn of the knife world – extremely hard to find – it’s now in-stock and available at most places that sell Benchmade knives, as well as their website Benchmade.com for $170.  They also have a couple higher-end versions of their Meatcrafter knife as well. One featuring a carbon-fiber handle and harder steel that looks pretty darn sweet if you ask me. However, at a $400 retail and 1.25oz heavier, it’s more a piece of art than a knife I’d feel comfortable taking into the field with me.  

Benchmade MeatCrafter 15500 Specifications:

  • Blade length: 6.08″
  • Blade thickness: 0.09″
  • Length: 11.06″
  • Handle thickness: 0.67″
  • Weight: 3.24 0z
  • Sheath weight: 1.77 oz
  • Blade Steel: CPM-154 (58-61 HRC)

Benchmade MeatCrafter 15500 Features:

  • Blade edge: Plain
  • Blade finish/color: BeadBlast
  • Blade style/shape: Trailing Point
  • Handle material: Santoprene
  • Lanyard hole: Yes
  • Sheath type: Boltaron
  • MSRP: $170 USD

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