For those of you familiar with Schrade knives you may have heard the buzz or recognize their beefy ultimate survival knife the SCHF9. I took out the SCHF9 for a review and brought along the SCHF26 as well as a few other Schrade knives. While I thought that the SCHF9 was going to be the best knife in the lot for the money, I was quickly drawn to the SCHF26.
Before I jump into why I fell in love with this knife, let me run down the specs of the SCHF26. The knife is 10.4” overall with a cutting edge of 5.4”. The knife features quarter inch 8CR13MOV sharpened to absolute perfection with TPE rubber handle scales. The knife features jimping on the blade and around the handle’s full-tang design. The knife comes in at a hefty 13.6 ounces. You can find this knife for a street price of around $30.
I found myself analyzing this knife and not thinking very highly of it when I saw the steel was 8CR13 and the no-thrills nylon sheath it comes with. If I am honest, I usually try to stay away from survival knives in the $30 range for obvious reasons. I figured that the intended purpose of this knife was to be the baby brother to the SCHF9 at a lower cost. Boy was I wrong.
Once I started putting this knife through its paces I realized that it had all the features I loved about the 9 and made it more user friendly in the 26 model. The handle scales are significantly smaller, but still fit well in big hands while accommodating smaller hands at the same time. The handle is also more comfortable during longer periods of use by a mile compared to the 9. One of the biggest complaints seen on the SCHF9 is that the handles were too big for people with smaller hands and had some hot spots with extended use. The 26 tackles those problems head on.
Another concern was the 8CR13MOV steel used in the knife. This steel is typical of budget pocket knives and is known to be softer steel that often dulls quickly with extended use. Although this seems to be an issue, Schrade has a phenomenal heat-treat on this knife allowing it to stay sharp even with abuse. It also helps that the steel is quarter inch, making for a thicker knife capable of holding that edge. The best part of the 8CR13 is that it is quickly honed in the field acquiring a scary sharp edge with ease.
I grew to love this blade very quickly. The recurve portion of the blade made for great carving and smaller camp tasks such as making tent pegs and feather-sticking fatwood for my fire. The belly of this knife is an incredible slicer that is capable of felling trees and batoning wood. The blade stood up the abuse without the edge rolling or chipping out on me. The black powder coating of this knife took a real beating and stood up to some of the brutally hard wood I processed it with.
The handles are very comfortable and allow the user to hold and position their hands for different knife positioning. Even with extended use, the handles did not create any hot spots on my hand with or without the use of gloves. The handles texturing aids in a comfortable grip that channels water and dirt, allowing the user to always have maximum control of the knife at all times.
Even though the sheath of the knife is not the best I’ve ever used, I found it to be incredibly simplistic. The nylon sheath sports Velcro straps that keep the knife from falling out along with the plastic insert. The sheath also has rivet holes for a lanyard or leg tie down. A decent sized front pouch makes for a great place to store a mini survival kit, fishing gear, or a sharpening stone. If you’re crazy like my buddies and I, you’ll also find the pouch accommodates up to 50 rounds of .22 long rifle ammunition (a great survival round to carry!). Although I would have liked to have seen this knife in Schrade’s awesome kydex, I can live with the sheaths functionality.
What can I say; at $30 you absolutely cannot beat the value in this knife. Chopping, batoning, and feather-sticking are a dream with the SCHF26. The knife craves abuse and urns for outdoor trips, camping, and showing off to your friends. My only complaint with this knife is the sheath, but it still gets the job done. Even with the no-frills nylon sheath, one has to keep in mind the price point. I would rather have the price of the knife kept low as to allow me to acquire a custom sheath.
This is a fantastic blade at a great value. The SCHF26 demands respect and a place in your arsenal of knives. Throw it in a bug-out bag, take it camping, or bring it on your next outing! Find this knife online at Taylorbrandsllc.com or on Amazon and own a knife that will stand the test of time and may even save your life!
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