There’s a certain obviousness about a fixed blade dangling from your hip. It’s not that it lacks usefulness or flair, but rarely is it subtle. Trolling the streets in the wake of a community-wide incident with 13 inches strapped to your leg will undoubtedly gain a lot of attention. And most of it will be unwelcomed. A prepared man is a well-heeled man, and people might take advantage of that. Sometimes, it is necessary to avoid suspicion and to easily blend in to the crowds, and the best way to do that—especially during troubled times—is by discreetly carrying a well-outfitted folding knife in your pocket.
Easy to access thanks to the pocket clip and quick to deploy because of the thumb flipper on the spine of the blade, Kilimanjaro’s Morsa is a drop-point blade made from 8Cr13MoV stainless steel. This type of steel is similar to AUS-8, which has a carbon content close to 0.75 percent, giving the Morsa the ability to take and keep a sharp edge. The downside to this grade of steel is that it isn’t as abrasion resistant as a VG-10 or S30V (which have a higher carbon content), and that is why Kilimanjaro coated the blade with a titanium nitride finish, besides the fact that it just looks cool. Titanium nitride is a non-stick surface that is wear resistant, scratch resistant, and enhances the corrosion protection of the blade.
The material in the handle is G10, which is a fiberglass-based laminate. Layers of fiberglass cloth are soaked in resin and are compressed and baked. The resulting material is very hard, lightweight, and strong. The wood surface texture is added to form checkering, which adds to the ability to better grip, along with the nine grooves pressed into the sides. G10 is an ideal material for tactical folders because of its ruggedness and lightness.
The knife is assembled via three Allen screws and a larger Allen screw as the blade’s pivot point. In addition to the thumb flip, there are thumb posts on either sides of the blade to ease its opening. Though there is no thumb ramp on the spine of the blade itself, there are three areas of jimping to increase the knife’s grip. In addition, the locking mechanism is slightly serrated which increases the stability of the handle. The belly of the blade is bowed out, which ergonomically fits the hand very well. A small hole on the pommel allows for the addition of a lanyard.
Overall, the eight-inch knife is solidly built, and the blade’s thickness lends to its strength and confidence under pressure.
Overall Length: 8.3 inches
Blade Length: 3.5 inches
Closed Length: 4.8 inches
Weight: 5.2 ounces
Blade Material: 8Cr13MoV Stainless Steel
Handle Material: G10 Composite
Editor’s note: A version of this article first appeared in the June 2015 print issue of American Survival Guide.