For the July 2014 issue of TACTICAL KNIVES, contributor Fred Demara reviewed the new Kraken blade from Rustick Knives. The no-frills combat blade was designed by renowned bladesmith Jack Stottlemire, whose 27 years of military experience inspired the Kraken’s design and have earned Rustick Knives a loyal following among soldiers at nearby Fort Bragg, in North Carolina.

“What you first notice about the Rustick Kraken is what is not there: There are no bells, whistles, mindless aesthetic sculpturing nor extraneous features. This is a serious tool designed and built for the war-fighter. It suffers no “catalog photo” clutter that would detract from its raison d’ etre,” says Demara in his review. “This clean engineering allows the Kraken the elegance of functional design, and the precisely detailed workmanship and finish treatment give it a robust and attractive utilitarian demeanor.”

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After examining the Kraken’s design, Demara came away impressed by the labor-intensive edge geometry achieved on the Kraken’s 11.3-inch blade. According to Demara, “The business end of the Kraken reflects a unique but mature design. It’s one of those unusual configurations that leaves you wondering, why hasn’t everybody done something like this? Fair question. The Kraken’s differential edge geometry is a feature not common on production knives simply because it takes quite a bit more effort—and skill—to do it like this.”

In the field, Rustick’s Kraken proved its durability and refined ergonomics through a series of routine tests designed by the author. “Any test or task we threw at the Kraken seemed to indicate that it has benefited from the same level of care in the hardening and tempering part of its manufacture as it has from the skillful way the steel is formed, finished and coated. It held an edge both in the hollow-ground and obtusely-ground parts of the blade, and it quickly touched up with a flat diamond hone,” says Demara. “This knife was very steady and responsive in the hand, no doubt in part because of the secure grip it offers and the comfortable, curved angle of the handle.”

For more information on the Rustick Kraken Knife, visit:

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Also check out the July 2014 issue of TACTICAL KNIVES, available on newsstands. To order, go to

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