www.RationalSelfDefense.com
 
Help Us Keep this Site FREE!
Please Visit Our Sponsors.
  
Inventive home improvement
www.Rationalselfdefense.com

 

 

Home

accessories

Ammunition

firearms

Knives

lights

lasers

optics

News

Pictures

tactics

 

 

Follow Dan_S_Defense on Twitter
Review:
TOPS Knives by Sky Marshall

By Dan S. Defense

A Serious, Functional Hiking and Hunting Knife

TOPS Knives are based in the Rocky Mountains. For over ten years TOPS Knives have been making tough and rock solid combat knifes, that can also be used for hunting and self defense. Fixed TOPS Knives blades, such as the one featured in this review--the Sky Marshall, are designed and handcrafted right here in the US. The design of TOPS Knives is unique and based on real life experience ,of folks who actually use or used knifes in their day to day existence.

While I find TOPS Knives advertising to be a bit over the top, with way too much bravado, I can understand the pride TOPS Knives makers take in their product. As a combat soldier I had several occasions to use different blades and I only wish I had my TOPS Knives blades with me back in those days. But, and there is always a but, since TOPS Knives are high quality combat knifes, which are made here in the US, they aren't cheap. in fact some models can be quite expensive.

The question is simple--is a TOPS Knives blade right for you? Is A TOPS Knives worth the extra money? Are the TOPS Knives really as good as the advertisement makes them to be? In this review we will look at the TOPS Knives Sky Marshall and answer each of the previous questions.

TOPS Knives puts it well when they say: "Our Knives are TOOLS designed, and built, using the extensive knowledge and REAL LIFE Experiences of 12 Operators with backgrounds in the Military, Law Enforcement, Outdoor Professions, and the Martial Arts." and that's seen in the attention to detail and focus on functionality. No fluff and shiny things here. The Sky Marshall isn't a fancy knife and it isn't very handsome. It's short and thick and lacks any artificial elements of "Shiny, Black, Tactical, Commando, Macho, blah blah, Coolness" stuff. And because of that and the fact that this is a true combat knife, I find it to be a beautiful and functional work of art. So what makes the Sky Marshall special? It's design and the flawless execution.

The first thing you notice when you grab a TOPS Knives Sky Marshall is its bulk. The blade is twice as thick as most knifes, the handle is solid and grips your palm, even if your paws are sweaty or wet ,and it fits naturally in several striking positions. The Blade is solid, black and very sharp. It didn't take the Sky Marshall long to draw blood from my testing hand. It feels much heavier than a knife that size should weigh, but its small size and functional Kydex sheath make it easy to carry. The blade itself is also surprisingly balanced and can even be used as a throwing knife.

Some specifics: The Sky Marshall has a blade that measures 4 3/8" in length and 1/4" thick. The overall length is 9 1/2", out of which 4 1/8" can be used for cutting. The handle is made from one of my favorite materials--the G10. It offers a solid grip in hot and cold weather and i prefer that my carry 1911 grips be made of G10. The business end of the Sky Marshall is made from 1095 High Carbon Alloy RC-58 and you can even use the tip of the handle as a striking weapon. You could give someone the "good news" with both ends.

TOPS Knifes says that the SKY Marshall was defined by a police officer with solid military background. From the TOPS Knives site: "OFFICER ALLEN GARCIA HAS BEEN A POLICE OFFICER IN MIDDLETOWN, R.I. SINCE 1988. PRIOR TO THAT, HE SERVED AS A SERGEANT IN THE US ARMY'S 82ND AIRBORNE DIVISION. HE HAS BEEN ASSIGNED TO BOTH DEPARTMENT A REGIONALIZED SWAT TEAMS SINCE 1991.. AND A MEMBER OF THE NTOA (NATIONAL TACTICAL OFFICERS ASSOC.) AND IALEFI." That is certainly a qualifying resume.

I appreciate the Sky Marshall for two main reasons: Firstly, it is easy to carry when hiking and its small size assures it doesn't tangle, hang, pull or otherwise interfere with any other gear. Secondly, it's very sharp and very hard, which means that no matter what I'd want to do with it, I'll be able to do so and not damage the blade. I was pretty sure that the coating would come off as soon as I used it to chop stuff off. I was wrong. The Black Traction Coating is as tough as the knife itself. I also like the Kydex sheath which keeps the Sky Marshall close to my body and hold on tightly to my belt. The fact that the sheet has a rotating steel spring clip makes it even more versatile and useful.

In summary, The TOPS Knives Sky Marshall is as tough as the advertisement claims. While reading this review, I'm sure you noticed my admiration for the functional design and durable execution. The Sky Marshall is black has a MSRP price tag of $179.00 while the camo finish costs an additional $30.00 (2010). I opted for the black version and after owning and using it for several month I can state that I'm delighted with it.

Typically, knifes wear down and in the long run cost more to maintain. In the case of the Sky Marshall, the initial cost is higher but overall cost of ownership is lower. Therefore, if you are interested in a high quality and durable knife, I highly recommend you give TOPS Knives a hard look and see if there's a model that's right for you. For me, the Sky Marshall is a handy and respectful companion that I intend to use for many years to come.

Until next time, stay safe by staying alert.

Comments? Questions? Email us
More Self Defense Articles
Handgun laser reviews Gun Laser Reviews

A handgun laser offers a tactical advantage in a threatening situation, as well as a great training tool. We'll review different types of lasers, discuss their applications, and see how to get the most out of them.  
Handgun Reviews

In-depth handgun reviews ranging from pocket guns to combat revolvers and full-size semi-automatics. We'll evaluate each gun for accuracy and reliability and look at pros and cons, with the goal of giving you the information you need to make an informed decision when buying a gun.   
 © Rational Self Defense, 2010
Contact Webmaster