Master bladesmith Daniel Winkler developed his WKII series of custom knives to reflect the “warrior’s experience.” As a supplier to U.S. Special Forces teams, Winkler has a unique insight into that “experience,” and with it he has made a series of stripped-down, high-performance knives for his WKII line. For the March 2014 issue of Tactical Knives, reviewer Steven Dick examined two of these designs in detail—the WKII Belt Knife and WKII Utility Knife.

To test edge retention, Dick put the 9-inch Belt Knife to work in the kitchen, breaking down multiple chicken carcasses. “The knife was used in a combination of cutting and chopping blows to break up the bones with zero damage to the edge,” Dick noted. “In fact, the bones didn’t even seem to dull the blade to any major degree.”

For the Utility Knife, Dick assigned the daunting task of stripping bark from recently chopped cherry wood, a task that becomes difficult because, according to Dick, “the bark forms something like a leather belt around the wood that often doesn’t break when splitting.” The 9.5-inch Utility Knife was more than ready for the job. In Dick’s words, “The Winkler Utility was perfect for the task, slicing through the cherry bark like it was tissue paper.”

For the full review, check out the March 2014 issue of Tactical Knives, available on newsstands and digitally November 19, 2013. To subscribe, go to

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