CRKT came to SHOT Show 2017 with nearly 50 new knives and tools on display, and quite frankly blew the major knife competitors off of the showroom floor. These new designs are coming from an ever-increasing line of high quality designers with backgrounds that vary as far as a knife user could imagine. The Rakkasan is an entry from CRKT’s “Forged by War” series, where each designer is a military veteran. CRKT also expanded their Ruger licensed knives that we’ll post on later.
CRKT Rakkasan Knife
Based out of Columbus, Georgia (adjacent to the massive Army Fort Benning), Austin McGlaun has remained very close to his military roots. McGlaun served three combat tours for the U.S. military in Afghanistan, giving him a unique perspective of what a multi-purpose fixed blade knife should entail.
As a part of the Forged By War® program, war veteran Austin McGlaun designed the Rakkasan™ in his Columbus, Georgia shop. The Rakkasan name comes from WWII Japanese soldiers remarking on the 187th Parachute Regiment’s deployment in what the soldiers described as “umbrellas for falling.” The Japanese troops were unfamiliar with this military tactic that took them by surprise, just as the Rakkasan will pleasantly surprise onlookers and users alike.
The Rakkasan™ takes on a very sleek profile with subtle, but attractive lines that draw both the eye and the hand of the user. McGlaun designed the Rakkasan™ as a mission-ready knife for his brothers and sisters still deployed in hostile foreign lands. With that in mind, you know he did not produce a knife that would fail in the harshest of conditions, when life or death are on the line.
McGlaun states the Rakkasan™ is more universal than his previous designs, such as the extremely popular Clever Girl™ knife (another CRKT production). Designed to be a powerful self-defense knife, the Rakkasan™ is sturdy enough to also be a great utility knife. This opens up a wide range of uses, from cutting wood and rope, to opening crates, boxes, or even MRE’s.
McGlaun chose SK5 Japanese steel for his Rakkasan™, which has been widely praised for its strength, durability and ability to maintain an edge. Comparable to U.S. 1080 steel, SK5 steel has a very good balance of carbon and manganese and is considered a good selection for high quality knives or tools.
In addition to a mission-ready utility knife, the Rakkasan™ comes with a durable, and long-lasting Kydex sheath as well. The sheath takes on a very concealable profile and is purpose-built with paracord or other tie strap rivet holes for mounting to packs, armor carriers, or belts.
CRKT Rakkasan Features
- High quality SK5 carbon steel blade
- Drop point tip with plain razor edge
- Full tang construction
- Black powder blade coating for corrosion protection
- Contoured G10 handles
- Kydex sheath with rivets and paracord attachments.
CRKT Rakkasan Specifications
- Knife Style: Fixed blade with sheath
- Blade Material: SK5 carbon steel, HRC 55-58
- Blade Edge: Plain razor
- Blade Thickness: 0.147 inches
- Blade Finish: Black powder coated
- Overall Length: 10.438 inches
- Blade Length: 4.894 inches
- Weight: 9.2 ounces
- Handle Material: Contoured G10
- Sheath Material: Black Kydex
- MSRP: $125.00.
It was an honor to get to talk to Austin McGlaun at SHOT Show. He is humble and friendly enough to be approachable, but is clearly proud by his knife productions. Last year McGlaun introduced his Clever Girl knife, which was on of the most popular CRKT knives of the year. McGlaun’s war-time experiences are pretty obvious in his designs. In fact, when talking about the Clever Girl he bluntly stated, “there’s no doubt what that knife is for, it’s for stabbin’ dudes.”
With the Rakkasan, McGlaun sought to expand the versatility and work options for his knife. Bulking up the blade and handle, the Rakkasan can be used for chopping and prying actions in addition to all the traditional knife roles. The picture of McGlaun’s original Rakkasan above clearly shows sign of extensive and heavy use. I really like the Rakkasan’s simple format, that has been greatly enhanced with outstanding materials and strategic lines.
Overall I was very impressed with the Rakkasan. The contoured G10 grip really molded to my hands and provided an outstanding texture for grasping. The blade on the Rakkasan is stout and gives me a good deal of confidence to perform a wide range of jobs. Though I have not used the Rakkasan in the field yet, I am planning on purchasing one very soon. Keep an eye on this knife, and expect great things!
EDITOR’S NOTE: BlueSheepdog.com does not accept paid advertising on our site. This allows us to provide objective reviews without pressure from manufacturers. We have not been provided financial compensation from CRKT for this article, and the opinions are based upon the author’s personal experience with the Rakkasan. The BlueSheepdog Crew are big fans of CRKT, but remain selective about the products we promote. The Rakkasan has every appearance of being a product that we would gladly recommend.
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