It’s Benchmade time again, folks, and we are back with the classic review. You all know how much I love the Mini Griptilian and other knives operating on Axis-lock. For me, it has always been great pleasure to get and use new blades from the company with a butterfly logo. What we have now is collaboration between Benchmade and acclaimed knife maker Warren Osborne. Yes, all the Rift, Contego and Barrage knives are the legacy of the very same Osborne. Now, stay awhile and read a story about why this knife actually rocks!
To start with, Benchmade 940 Osborne is probably the only knife that bears its creators name as a model. I mean, duh, there are numbers, but serial numbers are usually assigned to all the Benchmade (and other company’s) folders. Just a fact. Anyway, the blade comes in a standard blue box with the proud “Benchmade Knife Company, USA” imprint. It is American made, has a lifetime warranty and the MSRP of $200. The price actually depends on the blade shape, edge, finish and handles material. The model sent for our review is the basic 940 with reverse-tanto blade and green aluminum handles. The knife has overall length of 7.87 inches and a 3.40 inch blade.
- Blade length: 3.40″
- Overall length: 7.87″
- Closed length: 4.47″
- Weight: 2.90oz.
- Blade material: S30V Premium Steel
- Country of origin: USA
The first thing I liked about this knife from the box is the blade shape. Although being a fan of more classic forms, this reverse-tanto once and for all became a one love for me (such a knife-head I am, guilty as charged). The name is, by the way, mostly suggested by the designer and the official website. You can also hear people call it a drop-point or by mistake a wharncliffe. Anyhow, the blade has flat grind which starts about halfway down the blade stock. This makes the tip of the blade fat and strong enough not to break on you. However I personally didn’t have troubles piercing wood and cardboard with it. All thanks to the prominent 2/3 blade length swedge, which runs straight to the tip. Cutting with 940 Osborne is absolute pleasure. But again, name me at least one American Benchmade knife, that cuts awfully bad. That’swhen we get to talk about the blade steel.
The blade steel material on Benchmade 940 Osborne is, I would say, “standard” CPM-S30V. This premium steel hardened to 58-60 HRC makes the knife an excellent all-round tool good for both urban and bushcraft tasks. I personally carried this model for a week in the country, did some carving and feather sticking. And the knife worked well. Yes, it won’t process wood as good as any scandi-grind blade. But, after all, nothing does the job with wood as good as the old-school puukko knives. Cardboard and letter opening are not worth mentioning. Check and check. Sharpening S30V sacrifices some time. So just take a deep breath, turn on your favorite 80s flick and sharpen that beast. Yes, it is tiresome. But, look, you can always send it back to LIFESHARP service for Benchmade to hone. Been there, done that. Trust me: this cutting edge will last for real long this time.
Another thing to highlight is the blade finish. Although the official website calls it satin, in practice the blade has blackened stonewash touch. And it looks just fantastic. The blade tone adds something tactical to the overall gentleman’s green anodized scales. Additionally this bead-blasted finish is extremely scratch resistant. So again, no worries about the annoying notches on the blade. Long story short, the blade works superb andlooks even better.
Literary, the second thing that catches the eye with this here knife are the scales. Man, ain’t they gorgeous? I don’t know why the green color. Why not olive drab, orange or grey. But this green here anodized aluminum scales work awesome with the slim profile and overall aesthetics of Benchmade
Osborne. The slightly bent shape with the good index-finger choil and jimping makes this knife stick to your hand and stay there for good. There isn’t much of a thumb ramp, but is this really what you need in a slim blade like this? It won’t let you down anyway, so why bother. Finally, the icing on the cake…the color anodized titanium back spacer. I rarely see stuff like that on custom blades. But, hell, on a serial manufactured knife like this – this is definitely worth an additional buck. Not only it looks great, but the overall weight of Benchmade Osborne appears to be 2.90 ounces. And isn’t that a miracle for a knife with 3.4 inch blade. No seriously, my Kershaw Scallion weighs more in hand than this here full sized folder. Consequently making my think about the ergonomics part of my review.
Ergonomics (belt-clip, lock, deployment)
I’ve been always writing spoilers in every preface of the ergonomics part for a long time. Will I change anything? Won’t even think about it! So hear this – the knife feels and works absolutely fantastic. Man, I start looking for some new words to tell you how good it is. Anyway, let’s not make a hustle and just go through all the main features step by step.
The belt clip on 940 Osborne is the same you see on most Benchmade knives (Griptilian including). It’s wide, stiff and reliable. Had no problems clipping the blade to my pocket one handed, at least. Same goes with taking the knife off my pants. So in terms of how good the belt clip works, I’d say it works perfect. A thing we rarely notice appears to be useful when most needed. So you won’t stumble over the cloth folds when putting the knife into your pocket anyway. Good job, Benchmade, you did it again.
The lock, as mentioned before, is the Axis-mother-of-all-Lock. You know, it sometimes becomes boring to describe how good some frame or liner locks work. But never with this Axis here! Yes it is complicated, yes the dirt can get inside, and blah, blah, blah. Come on, it’s obvious. That is not why we love or hate it. The fact is – this spring operated locking mechanism works. Deal with it. The blade stays in place now and will stay there in a year, in two generations, whenever. Another thing is of course the deployment.
My hobbies include mountain biking, drawing, camping, knives… and playing with Benchmade 940 Osborne. Opening and closing a Benchmade knife has never been so smooth and fast at the same time. No, seriously, you should try it. Due to quite a blade length and weight this thing shoots out blade like crazy. It is not assisted but actually feels like one. I don’t know, guys, what they did to 940 Osborne, but it definitely works better than Griptillian. Again, you can open the knife using the dual thumb studs or by depressing the lock. Anyway – it is a great pleasure seeing your pocket blade work like that.
In the end of every day it’s quite important to ask yourself – have you done what you’ve planned? Like so, Benchmade company along with Warren Osborne designed a really good and functional knife. Have they actually made the Knife as planned? Yes, sir. And with flying colors! There are few knives I recommend holding in hand and testing. Benchmade 940 Osborne is definitely among those favorites. Check it out in the nearest Arms store and decide what’s right for you. Good luck and stay sharp.