According to our friends over at Knifenews.com (full story HERE) the famous firearms manufacturer Smith & Wesson has purchased Taylor Brands LLC for $85 million. For those who don't know, Taylor has long produced knives and multitools with the Smith & Wesson name on them, and I have often commented on the quality (more accurately, the lack therof) of Taylor knives, whether they are marked S&W, Schrade, Uncle Henry or Imperial.
For years I had labored under the impression that the folks at S&W were blissfully unaware of the crap that Taylor was producing with their name on it- I am a big fan of Smith & Wesson firearms, and that name has become (in my mind at least) synonomous with quality revolvers. I had assumed that someone at Taylor had arranged for a dump truck full of cash to arrive on a bi-monthly schedule at the house of S&W's licensing manager, and that as a result, he or she just didn't ask any questions. It seems that isn't the case, and that S&W is fully aware of the crap that Taylor is producing, and that is very disapointing to me.
The worst part is that S&W doesn't appear to even want to fix it- they seem content to merely take advantage of the distribution network that Taylor has, so that they can make their own in house accessories more available. As if having their name on crappy knives wasn't damaging enough to the brand, now Smith & Wesson will be selling their actual merchandise on the shelves right next to crud, strengthening the connection.
This is one of those times when I really hope I am wrong. As I said, I have lots of respect for S&W, and I hate to see them take a bad decision (like giving a license to Taylor in the first place) and make it worse.
Were you looking for an expert on multitools, Swiss army knives, outdoor gear and more? Well, you won't find just one here. You'll find a few thousand. This is easily the best place to find up to date and historical information on multitools and more.
What kind of people would write collect and review multitools?
Quite simple really- we are designers and do-ers, outdoors types and indoor types, mechanics, doctors, problem solvers and problem makers. As such, we have, as a world spanning community, put every type, size and version of multitool, multifunction knife, pocket knife and all related products to every test we could manage in as many places and environments as there are.
The results are quite exceptional- we have a vast and comprehensive shared experience with virtually any tool that one can be curious about- and we continue to push the boundaries with more tools in more places and situation.
Multitool.org is the brainchild of Grant Lamontagne, a guy with the desire to do more and go further than he did yesterday. Respected in the outdoor gear industry, Grant made his mark testing and using multitools, knives and many other outdoors products while shooting, kayaking, camping, cycling and Jeeping his way across the vast Canadian Wilderness. On lazy days he stays home and clears plugged drains, changes locks and paints walls and fixes things.
Grant is joined by his partner Megan Blumenthal, a former outdoor gear marketer and avid outdoorswoman with a love of archery, paddling, fishing and campfire cooking. Anything but a glamper, Megan dreams of tenting in every Canadian National Park. The second she leaves the office she's outdoors cycling, kayaking, camping and more.
Multitool.org has a crack team of technicians and designers such as Micah Johnson and Esteban Soler, who maintain the vehicle that brings Grant’s testing and experiences, plus those of a planet full of members via our forum and Facebook page.
Here is my fancy, shiny new blog. Isn’t it neat? Anyone who knows me or follows some of my posts on our forum here at Multitool.org knows that I can get a bit cheesy so I have decided to start it all off with some cheese. No, not the Adam West as Batman style cheese, but something just as odd- specifically Moon Cheese. And what better way to eat Moon Cheese than with a tactical spork?
I picked up this Moon Cheese on a whim yesterday while buying a couple of Opinel knives and a SOGZilla (more on those later!) at my local Mountain Equipment Co-Op- me being a lover of cheese made me figure I had to try it, and now that I am munching away on the little orange moon rocks I am quite glad I did. It tastes very much like cheddar, which, you know, is probably largely because it IS cheddar, albeit freeze dried.
In fact, it actually tastes an awful lot like Cheese Nips crackers, only more cheesy since there’s no cracker portion, despite the fact that it is crunchy like a cracker. What will science contort and pervert for us next?
Now that we have the discussion of cheese out of the way, what can you expect from this blog in the future- you know, since I wasted your time talking about Moon Cheese, why the heck should you continue reading? Well, quite honestly, I think it’s all downhill after Moon Cheese, but I do all kinds of odd things outdoors, from shooting to kayaking to occasionally blowing myself up a little bit. This blog will detail some of those adventures as well as discuss the equipment and gear that I take with me- how I decided what to take, how it performed, and whether I’d consider taking it again next time.
Maybe I’ll review some stuff, maybe I’ll just talk about something I bought to put away for when the zombies come calling, maybe I’ll build something…. Honestly I hate planning things out, so expect to see blog posts about whatever happens to cross my path (or my wallet!) that particular day.
Plus there’s always a good chance that we might have another Close Encounter of the Dairy Kind.
I got this bag a few weeks ago, but for one reason or another I was unable to post some initial thoughts until now.
I had wanted a bag a little smaller than my usual Maxpedition Tactical Operator bag that I usually carry- it gets a bit heavy what with a laptop (old, heavy Toshiba Satellite), a tablet, miscellaneous accessories, paperwork, pens, a few tools and so on, so I wanted something that was going to hold all the essential stuff but force me to minimize the clutter. I found what I hope will be the bag I'm looking for at http://directactiongear.com/ although they do have their work cut out for them. I am hard on bags and few last more than a year with me. But, on to some pictures so you know what I'm talking about!
While not necessarily a multitool, the new RESCOM from Boker has more in line with tools than it does knives.
Following the latest trend of “Tool Knives” SOG has released the Kilowatt, which is basically a one handed opening tactical type knife with some wire stripping features. While I was curious, I have to say I wasn’t overly enthusiastic about this one, but then again, electricity has never been my strong suit.
Anyone who reads my reviews or ramblings on the forums knows that I have a fascination with rescue oriented tools. With all the traveling and security work I do, and have done over the years, I have witnessed more accidents than tactical knife-y situations, and I like tools that are oriented to helping victims rather than slaughtering ninjas.
Tool Logic is one of those companies that everyone has heard about, but no one seems to really know much about. This is a bit of a crime as ToolLogic has some excellent and innovative products, including the SLPro, Law Enforcement Model. In case you are wondering what qualifies the SLPro as a multitool, or at least worthy of being reviewed on a multitool site like this one, remember that the SLPro is more than just a one handed opening, locking tactical type knife.
Having done so many different things with their tool line, Leatherman decided a few years ago to get into pocket knives. However, being Leatherman, they had to do it their own way, and look at knives with tools added, rather than their more typical method of making tools with knife blades on them. The top dog in this particular line was the now discontinued h502.
Recently the knife and tool industry has been leaning more and more towards rescue oriented tools such as Benchmade's ERT-1/Houdini tools, the Victorinox Rescue Tool and more traditional offerings like NOV8's ResQMe tool. Jumping on the bandwagon is traditional US knifemaker Utica/Kutmaster with their latest rescue tools.