THE white box with the stylized red hawk is pure Ruger, but the contents are a new direction for the world’s largest firearms company. Ruger is in the knife business!
Several knives are offered, and I have been able to test two of the first available. Bill Harsey designed these for Columbia River Knife & Tool (CRKT), Ruger’s partner in the project.
The Ruger Go-N-Heavy folder weighs a solid 10¼ ounces. While this may seem heavy for a folder, the heft and balance of the Go-N-Heavy are excellent. The Ruger knife features a liner lock and thumb opening stud. As the blade is opened, a portion of the liner pops into place to lock the blade open. This section of the liner is tensioned in order to offer a good spring fit to the blade.
I conducted the usual test of rapping the back of the blade against a hard wooden desk to test the lock. Half a dozen hard raps failed to dislodge the Go-N-Heavy lock.
Even when cutting with a knife that has been properly vetted for reliable locking, I like to angle the blade in such a way that lock failure isn’t invited, but this is a sturdy lock.
The knife opens by use of twin studs in the upper blade. Jimping just to the rear of the opening studs helps with control in close cutting chores. Despite the size of the Ruger knife, I found the geometry of the blade is such that the knife may be rapidly opened and locked with one-handed use.
The knife blade itself is well finished in a satin polish. The blade is a full five inches long. A synthetic spacer at the rear of the handles serves as a recess for the point.
The grind is high, which should make for ease of cleaning and sharpening.
The drop point is a common style for hunting knives and will serve well for skinning, chopping, and slashing.
While a knife makes a poor crowbar, this blade is as sturdy as any folder blade available. While the Go-N-Heavy knife is a big knife for big chores, it is not so large and heavy that it could not be used for peeling an apple or preparing food.
The handle offers a finger groove at the lock for good retention. When testing the knife in cutting chores and also a number of martial arts workouts with a heavy grip, the fingers did not deactivate the liner lock. This is something that must be addressed when choosing a heavy-duty outdoors folder, whether the Ruger Go-N-Heavy or any other.
The handles are interesting in both appearance and function and are reminiscent of a Picatinny rail. The aluminum scales are hard anodized black.
The Ruger Go-N-Heavy comes with a well-designed sheath. When space is at a premium, the Ruger folder may ride in the sturdy belt pouch supplied, and would be a great all-around edged tool.
When I tested the Ruger Go-NHeavy, the knife exhibited good heft, excellent balance, and presented the blade edge properly for cutting chores. This is a heavy knife well suited to outdoors cutting chores. I find the knife well made, useful, and definitely worth its $99.95 price tag.
For many users, this knife would be the first choice for field use. Another Bill Harsey design, the Accurate is a traditional knife with the general outline of a classic skinning knife. The synthetic handles are similar to Ruger handguns such as on the SR series. The red Ruger medallion sets this knife off. Scales are nylon-fabric resin.
The Accurate is available with both a drop point and a rising clip blade. I chose the latter. This design offers excellent control when dealing with cutting chores such as skinning and gutting small game.
The grind is high and the edge is excellent. It is in fact shaving sharp. Some factory knives are not delivered with a truly sharp edge and require some time with the sharpener. The Ruger line is delivered sharp.
In common with the Go-N-Heavy folder, this knife features a blade of 8Cr13MoV stainless steel. RC hardness is 58-59. All stainless steel is just that, stainless, but the combination should give good service. The handle offers excellent retention for normal cutting chores. Blade construction is full tang.
The sheath is well designed, demonstrating good retention and little rebound when worn on the belt. Suggested retail of the Accurate is also $99.95.
After testing the Ruger knives for several weeks, I concluded that they are good designs, well executed and available at a fair price. They are impressive examples of modern steel and the result of a happy partnership between Ruger and CRKT.