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Bear Grylls Knife Review
By Dan S. Defense

The Bear Grylls knife (or, by its full name, the Bear Grylls Ultimate Survival Knife) is described by Gerber as the pinnacle of Gerber's Bear Grylls Survival Series. The fixed blade knife is packaged in a special Bear Grylls cover, and comes with a sheath, whistle and fire starter.

This ultimate survival knife was designed by Gerber, a well-known knife maker from Oregon, and Bear Grylls, who's known to viewers of his popular television show "Man vs. Wild". In this article we'll look at this knife, test it for survival functionality, and yes, we'll talk a bit about Bear Grylls too.

First, let's look at the two entities that designed and built this survival knife. Gerber is a US based knife makers that based in Oregon. They have been making knives and tools, in the US, since 1948. Their motto, which I wholeheartedly endorse, is "Fend For Yourself". Words to live by for sure! I think the good folks at Gerber describe themselves best: "We're Gerber.

We design the tools, knives and outdoor gear that are essential, not only for the task at hand, but for bringing back something lost: our self-reliance." Bear Grylls is well known for his survival ability in the most outlandish places. Bear's popular "Man vs. Wild" television show is running strong in the US, and it made Bear Grylls a house hold name.

From a name recognition perspective, I'll venture a guess that more people recognize Bear Grylls than they do Gerber. Regardless of fame, this knife is a standalone product, and we'll see if it's worth purchasing, and if it's really as good as Bear Grylls and Gerber claim it is.

When I first opened the Bear Grylls ultimate knife package, which was an early Christmas gift, I realized that it's very similar to Gerber's LMF II Infantry knife, which I got last year. It appears that the LMF II, which is an excellent knife, was the starting point of the Bear knife.

There's a great story from Iraq that describes how this well built knife saved two of our men in uniform. But we are here to talk about the Bear survival knife. Gerber claims that this knife is loaded with innovation that won't be found on other fixed blade knives. That statement is accurate when you look at the entire package that comes with this survival knife.

The Bear Grylls survival knife package contains: a 10" knife that has a 4.8" fixed bladed that's serrated half way, and made of high carbon stainless steel. It has a drop point blade (I personally prefer Tanto blade) and a textured rubber grip that has an interesting feel to it.

The Bear knife also has a stainless steel pommel, which has serrations and can be used as a hammer. The hand guard has two holes in it, making it possible to attach this survival knife to a stick, turning it into a spear for hunting, fishing or self-defense. The pommel has a lanyard hole which holds an emergency whistle at the end of a lanyard.

You also get a nylon sheath that has an integrated diamond sharpener and special compartment that holds a Ferrocerium rod fire starter. To make fire starting easier, Gerber created a small striker notch on the back on the knife, which keeps the rod on track as you strike it against the steel to produce a spark.

To those who lingered on the word Ferrocerium-"it is a man-made metallic material that has the ability to give off a large number of hot sparks when scraped against a rough surface." The last item in the package is a very nice (but unprotected) "Priorities of Survival", which is a pocket guide contains Bear's survival essentials. It has excellent information but if you don't waterproof it, it won't last through a rainy day, so waterproof it or put it in a zip lock bag.

Let's talk about Bear Grylls for a bit. As any successful man, Bear has fans and critics. I'll just supply a few facts and you can make your own mind up. Bear is known for his TV show and being an extreme adventure. He climbed Everest, broke records that would break most man and he's not done yet. I personally find Bear's background much more impressive.

Bear served in one of the British SAS units (Bear served in the 21st SAS and not the famous 22), and had a severe back injury that would leave most people disabled for life. Bear recovered and then conquered Everest. His will power is amazing and I;m for one, an at owe at his drive and need for constant challenges.

Now, let's go back to the ultimate survival knife. The blade is very sharp and draws blood with little effort. The pommel can certainly be used as a hammer, for building shelter, or breaking your windshield in an emergency. The whistle is very loud and drove my household nuts within a very short time span.

I liked the way the sheath worked. It allowed a traditional vertical knife carry, on the belt with the blade pointing down, but also allowed horizontal carry. I tried the diamond sharpener on a knife that lost its edge due to hard usage. The sharpener worked well and I was able to restore the edge to the TOPS folder.

To test the fire starter, I went outside to start a small fire. We've had snow recently and the ground and most things close to it were wet. I found some lint and a few dry leaves inside one of our bushes. I then collect some wet but not soaked wood and arranged my little emergency fire. It took me a few tries to start the fire, but it worked well and I was happy with the performance of the Gerber gear.

Having tested the fire starter, knife sharpener and whistle, I moved on to the knife. I took a few nails to test the pommel, and managed to hammer them into the support beams of our home. Taking the nails out, on the other hand, wasn't as easy as hammering them in, but the test showed that the pommel worked well. I wouldn't try hammering cement blocks, but for wood work it seems to work perfectly well. Having had to start a fire without matches or a a fire starter, I can truly appreciate the value of this small tool.

I knew the Bear survival knife was sharp, especially after cutting myself, but it was time to test it on materials other than my fingers. I took a large steak and chopped it up.

Cutting the meat was easy and took no effort at all. I then moved to cutting some dog food, which comes in tubes and looks like a very large salami. That meat was harder but the knife sliced it with ease. I washed the blade and went to cut some rope. I have some climbing rope and lots of para-cord. The Bear knife cut them all with ease and without losing its edge. The last test entailed chopping some wood.

I picked a thick branch, took a fairly large rock, placed the blade on the wood and then I started banging away with the stone, until the branch was cut off. While the knife showed wear from my hammering, the blade remained sharp, and I knew that I could build a shelter (e.g. A-Shelter) outdoors with this knife.

In summary, the Ultimate Knife from the Bear Grylls survival series is a good working tool. This knife can stand on its own, and sell well on merit. After testing the knife in different ways, that would resemble an emergency situations, I'd say that this is a good knife to take outdoors.

I would recommend this knife to friends, and suggest you give it a hard look, especially if you are looking for a good SAR or survival knife. In addition, I'd suggest you visit the special page Gerber and Bear put together for more good information on survival.

Until next time, stay safe by staying alert!

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