A Possible Alternative

The last post about my neck knife seemed to get a lot of attention and Notwende (https://notwende.com/) commented that he had just finished making a dagger blade from a file.  Great steel!  I recently decided to purchase a dagger (that would make 4 blades for EDC) though I doubt I really need it. 

But of course, when one asks the question “How many knives/guns do you need?” the answer is always “One more.”  So I started looking at daggers.  Of course, the first thing was the combination of price and quality.  I didn’t want a piece of junk that was cheap steel and poorly manufactured, but I also saw no need to spend a couple of hundred dollars on a custom-made blade. 

A dagger has one basic purpose, and that is to introduce a sharp, pointy piece of metal into the soft vulnerable parts of a meat sack.  I was absolutely amazed at how many people didn’t get this idea.  Go to Amazon (one of my favorite sites for product ratings) and see how many idiots complain about how a tool made for one purpose does not work for a totally different purpose.  So many moron commenters apparently think that an axe should be good to stab with, and a dagger should be a good camp knife or tree-felling tool.  Idiots!  You wouldn’t hunt elephants with a .22LR, and you wouldn’t hunt rabbits with a Win 458 mag.  Well, maybe some people would.  Who knows?

My youngest happens to own a S&W H.R.T. dagger which he bought for its ‘tacti-cool’ looks.  Yep, I have to say that to the average Joe it is a baddass looking blade.  Looks do count sometimes, and I would rather scare someone into compliance that have to use force.  It’s safer for all involved.  I remember an old episode of ‘COPS’ where one state trooper said to another that the subject decided to quit resisting after he was introduced to ‘Mr SIG .45.’  Looking down a large caliber barrel is definitely intimidating. 

The S&W HRT is basically a 440 steel, though it seems to be one of the better ones.  It is a full-tang and the handle is pretty comfortable and has a rubberized finish.  One of these days I’m going to get out the olive oil and do a non-scientific grip test to see how well one can maintain their grip on a slippery handle.  Blood is very slippery!  I do like the HRT grip.


The sheath is decent leather, though my preference for sheath material is Kydex.  It has a steel clip on it that works for most belts.  This knife is listed as a ‘boot knife,’ though I think that term is pretty silly.  I’ve never worn a knife clipped to my boot and cannot imagine it to be comfortable.  Of course, the sheath goes inside the boot and the clip is on the outside, but I still am not sold on the idea.

Now, since I’m a real cheapskate, or at least like to find the best deal, I looked at all the competing blades in the dagger style.  I found one I liked that had almost exactly the same steel as the HRT, though I’m sure that there are differences in hardening and tempering.  The difference in price was about $5, so it wasn’t that much of a better deal, but it was cheap enough that I thought I’d get one and compare it side-by-side with my son’s HRT. 


Dimensions of the MTech MX8059 are almost identical to the HRT, both being about 9 inches overall with blades just under 5 inches.  The grip is flat-sided compared to the HRT’s slightly more oval shape and has G10 scales, which provide an excellent grip.  Gotta do that olive oil test!  I liked the serrations which give the blade shape a little more utility over non-serrated.  Serrations are great for cutting cordage of any sort, or cutting any fibrous material.  If you like the non-serrated, MTech makes that, too.

Both of these blades are made in China and sell for under $20, so such a knife is not a major investment for most people.  The sheaths are identical, possibly contracted from the same manufacturer.  The steel clip on the sheath would be handy to secure the knife in an EDC bag, purse, or on a belt.  My son liked the MTech so well that last time he was home he took mine with him and I had to order another.  Sneaky little devil, but it was close to his birthday so I let it slide.

So there you have it, another knife for EDC, albeit this one is rather specialized.  If I kit up fully, I have about 8 or so blades on my person.  Just proof that you always need one more blade.


10 comments on “A Possible Alternative

  1. Notwende says:

    I’m just trying to imagine the looks of some security guy asking you to please leave all kind of weapon at his desk before entering the secured area.
    So Mr. Deputy draws a knife, puts it on the table, draws another one … while the guard’s eyes grow bigger and bigger 😂😂

    • Some of us carry more stuff than others. Lots of officers carry backup pistols and knives. So, yes it can be interesting when one ‘unloads’ their gear to enter a secure area. Usually, when this happens we are out of public view, so we don’t freak out too many people. But I have stood next to other deputies at the gun lockers outside the secure area of the jail while we divested ourselves of weapons and it takes some guys more time than others. It also provides an opportunity to get to know your co-workers and share info about your EDC, etc. I once met a deputy at the gun lockers and found that he did not carry a round in his gun’s chamber. Where he learned that crap I don’t know, but I avoided him after that experience since I could not count on him being ready to save my life if necessary. Perhaps he had some other issues because he didn’t last long at the department.

      • Notwende says:

        Well I was something like that guy during my military service term. Whenever I was ordered guard duty me and a comrade had to do several rounds on the compound along the fence.
        I figured I wouldn’t shoot anyone climbing the fence so I always unchambered the round and put it back into the magazine. We called that status “half-loaded”.
        One just had to pull the bolt and the rifle was loaded and ready to shoot.
        I felt a lot safer like that – but guard duty with a rifle sans ammunition?
        No way.

      • I have pulled guard duty with an unloaded M-16. We were not even issued ammo, and would have been court-martialed if caught with any. This was about 20 clicks north of Frankfurt near Giessen in the early 70’s. But being on duty as an LEO is different. Your situation can go from total boredom to life and death is just a heartbeat. Not like guard duty, more like being in a combat area that is not totally secure.

  2. Notwende says:

    Btw I wouldn’t like a dagger with a saw/serrated blade.
    It may do a little bit more damage but on the other hand it will be harder to pull the blade out again (you’ll have to overcom not just the suction but also the resistance of the entangled sawing part) and I’d regard it more of a danger to the knife’s handler.

    • You could be right about the serrations. Guess I need to look into this, but I don’t think that the serrations will hang up on any tissue due to their sharpness. I was looking at a much larger knife, a Fairbairn Sykes, but didn’t want to spend the money at the time. I’ll probably get one at a future date.

  3. steveknife says:

    The purpose of a dagger is pretty much a push plunge meant to disable an attacker. What you have there is fine, as long as it has a sharp point. Two others I would recommend are the CRKT Sting and the other is the A.G. Russell who basically designed the knife for CRKT and then offered his own version. Good steel, that should not break. The sheath on the CRKT requires some practice to open smoothly and quickly.

  4. steveknife says:

    Yes, for the most part a knife is a knife to people. In fact different styles and designs perform different tasks. Make wise choices our life may depend on it.

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