Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Mora Bushcraft Force Review

About a year ago Mora came out with a line of knives targeted at the bushcraft community. The marketing strategy was reflected in the names of the knives, this one being the Bushcraft Force.

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Specifications:
Knife Length: 9 1/4 inches (235 mm)
Blade Length: 4 1/4 inches (108 mm)
Blade Thickness: 3/32 inches (2.4 mm)
Blade Width: 15/16 inches (23.5 mm)
Blade Material: 12C27 Sandvik stainless steel
Blade Hardness: HRC 58 on the Rockwell Scale
Type of Tang: Partial concealed
Blade Grind: Scandinavian/single bevel
Handle Material: Plastic
Sheath Material: Plastic

Cost: $30.00

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In terms of price, this is a lower mid range knife. Coming in at $30, it is about three times as expensive as a regular Mora knife, but is still quite a it less than many popular options on the market.

When compared to the Mora 1, the Mora Bushcraft Force is a much more robust knife. The blade is a bit longer, in length being closer to the Mora 2. It is also significantly wider, although the thickness has remained the same as the Mora 1. The grind is single bevel, just like with most other Mora knives. The handle is also larger, both in length and thickness. It is comfortable, but I find it not to be as good as that of the Mora 1. The fact that the handle has finger grooves, makes it less comfortable when switching holds, although it is very comfortable when using a forward grip.

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I have broken Mora knives before. Most of the time the failure has occurred in the handle, by having the partial tang (of a Clipper) come up through the handle. The Bushcraft Force has a longer tang, which should lessen that problem.

Bushcraft Force

I believe this was reflected in the performance of the knife. When batoning, even though the thin blade was understandably not the best splitter, the knife proved to be very strong. The piece of wood I was batoning turned out to be particularly stubborn. This knife took a very serious pounding without getting damaged. I was sure that it would fail at some point, but there was so sign of stress or damage.

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Similarly with truncating, the knife did well. There was no damage caused to the blade, even though it is very thin.

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Feather sticks were relatively easy to make. The Bushcraft Force has a very thin blade, so you can get it very sharp. The overall design made the knife a bit uncomfortable for me to hold and use, but it performed well.

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Overall, the Mora Bushcraft Force is a good knife. In my opinion it is stronger than the old Clippers. At no point did I notice any cracking of the handle or movement in the blade, which I have seen with the old Clippers. I was truly surprised by the strength of the knife.

The design has moved significantly away from the traditional Mora designs. It is far from the puukko shape that is utilized in most other Mora knives. As a result the feel of it is very different. It is a more robust knife is all respects, but I believe that a lot is lost with the new design. It is simply a different knife from the old models like the Mora 1. I personally do not think that this makes it a better bushcraft knife. On the other hand, if you have always wished for a much more robust and less puukko-like Mora knife, this is the one for you.

In terms of value, while I am not happy that this knife is three times more expensive that most other Mora knives, it is worth the price. At least a very good part of that price increase seems to have gone in improving the quality (if not the design). The materials seem to be better quality, the connection between the handle and blade are better than on the Clipper, and the sheath, even though plastic, is of much higher quality. I would not hesitate to spend $30 on a knife with this quality, although I definitely prefer the more understated design of the traditional Mora knives.

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