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Knife knowledge

Knives maintenance

After use, always clean the knife, particularly blade. Use the dry piece of cotton. If the stains are burdensome then use maintenance olive for weapons, which also protects the steel from corrosion. If the blade was exposed on contact with salt water, be sure to clean it by immersing in water with a small addition of dishwashing liquid. Then thoroughly rinse it under running water and wipe with a dry cloth, for extra protection lubricate it with weapon maintenance olive, that protects the steel from corrosion.
Store the knife in a dry place. Humid conditions may cause corrosion of steel, deformation leather handles, sheaths. If you see any rust signs on the blade then remove it, with weapon maintenance olive or delicate polishing compund.
Use a good quality sharpening hones. To get a good cutting edge, use different grit sharpening stones (Coarse, Fine). For sharpening hard D2 steel use ceramic or diamond hand hones. The manufacturer does not recommend sharpening with honing machines, grinding machines, etc. This can lead to the destruction of knife cutting edge.

KA-BAR products testing methods

C.A.T.R.A. Testing
Cutlery and Allied Trades Research Association (CATRA) Testing - One of a handful of machines like it in the world, the CATRA tester uses controlled pressure, stroke length, number of cycles and a certified sand-impregnated paper to determine the sharpness and edge-holding capabilities of a blade.
Rockwell Testing
KA-BAR Rockwell tests knives to determine the hardness of the steel. A diamond brale presses into the blade and makes an indentation. The harder the steel is the higher the Rockwell reading.
Goniometer Testing
A goniometer measures the edge angles of a KA-BAR knife by using a laser beam. The laser beam is aimed at the cutting edge of the blade and is split by the honed edge onto a protractor that reads the edge angle of each side of the blade.
Field Testing
KA-BAR puts prototype knives and sheaths through vigorous field tests to find and eliminate problems before introducing new products to the public.

Glossary of Terms

1095 Cro-Van Steel
Easy to sharpen, plain carbon steel used in knife making. Proven to be one of the most popular steels used in KA-BAR knives.
440A Steel
A high-carbon stainless steel used in many American production knives.
Carbon Stainless Metal
A carbon steel core of Hitachi White Steel sandwiched between two layers of 410 stainless steel.

Quenching (CR)
The process of freezing blades to improve blade performance

D2 Steel
A high-carbon, high-chrome tool steel often used for blanking dies. This steel has excellent edge holding ability but is very difficult to process.
Epoxy Coating
A coating process that protects blades from corrosion and also makes them non-reflective.
Flat Ground
A grind that tapers from the top of the blade down to the cutting edge. Also known as a "V" grind.
Frame Lock
A side lock that uses the frame for the locking mechanism.
Full Tang
A tang that shows all around the handle of the knife between two pieces of handle material.
Full Length Tang
Extension of the blade steel that runs completely through the handle to the end of the knife.
G10 ®
An extremely durable material made of woven fiberglass soaked in epoxy resin, then highly compressed and baked.
Game Hook
Also known as a gut hook, this blade shape is best for opening the flesh of game.
Glass-Filled Nylon
Material used to make sheaths. Nylon is reinforced with glass particles and other materials to provide strength and durability while still allowing some flexibility.
Also known as a hilt, is the piece of steel that separates the handle and the blade. Serves to keep the hand from slipping on the blade when cutting. Can be single or double.
Hollow Ground
The ground surface of the blade is concave. Used to create a fine cutting edge.
Kraton G ®
Referred to simply as Kraton, is a synthetic rubber that can be molded into knife handles. Provides a non-slip grip. GLS trademark.
A folding knife that has a lock release on the back of the handle.
Micarta ®
A man made material, made by layering resin and cloth. Used to make very fine knife handles. Westinghouse trademark.
An acronym which stands for National Stock Number, a 13-digit number used to identify an item of material in the supply distribution system of the United States Government.
Powdered Metal
A process used to make shaped metal pieces. Fine metal particles are molded under pressure and then fused under high heat. Also known as sintered metal.
Reclaimed American Chestnut
Back in the early 1900's, Chestnut blight caused a fungus that eventually killed off three and one half billion American Chestnut trees. KA-BAR'S Traditional Dog's Head Folders are made with handles created from the wood of a deconstructed barn in Hopkinsville, KY, that was primarily framed and sided before the blight with American Chestnut.
Also known as a linerlock. A locking mechanism that features a tab cut out of the liner which is used as a stop to lock the blade in an open position. To close, the liner tab is pushed back to its original position
Zytel ®
A glass-filled nylon material used in making handles for knives. DuPont trademark.