Not Used it Yet
I Purchased this kinfe because I own the Gerber LMF2 and I love that blade. The LMF 2 is a military survival knife and although Im not a fan of serations on a camping/survival knife, the LMF is designed to cut your way out of a downed aircraft and it does I've seen it.
The blade is shorter and narrower than the LMF. I am getting ready to use it here pretty soon and going to use it to batton wood and tent spike hammering, etc. We'll see if its as good as the LMF.
The fire starter throws a good spark and attaches well to the sheath. I took the emergency whistle off the handle and attached it to the starter. Its too small for a lynard. The blade holds a good edge and the sharpener works kinda well (screw holes in the way). The blade has a nitch cut out on the back of the knife with a little fire icon to show you where to strike the fire starter. Thats handy.
I had to design a calf/ankle strap to wear it low. I like my knives on my calf, and having to construct a strap to attach my ankle strap to was annoying. The serations are a bad idea with any survival knife but I can choke up on the blade back with my thumb if I need to fashion anything like a stake or something. Gerber fixed the pommel breaking problem according to multiple online forums. Its 1st run had that problem, but best of all..Gerber will fix this knife for free, or replace it. They are a good knife company that way.
Over all I would give this knife a good review. The blade is a good thickness and keeps a decent edge. The serrations are unfortunate and as it seems after a bit of abuse they will start to chip and dull. The grip of the knife is wonderful, it offers a lot of control and comfort. The fire starter works well and throws a nice spark. I am worried about the amount of plastic on the base that has been worn down in the attempts to make a fire. The sheath is great. Can be worn on a belt in a drop leg fashion or scout style, however, a thick belt of cloth will be hard to get through the loops. The sharpener on the back of the plastic is a nice stone. A few swipes to clean up the edge a little was very handy. I know some of the early models had a problem with the pommel coming off but I did not have this problem. It dealt well with tent pegs and even sinking nails on a fence......had to give it a go. All in all a good knife, I had Gerber LMF II that I loved and this reminds of it fondly.
Good knife for a novice camper through an intermediate
I have several Gerber knives along with a couple of Benchmade's. I have to say at first I was a little skeptical based on some bad reviews of this knife. Seems that Gerber had some manufacturing issues when this knife first came out. I've owned the knife for approx 6 months now and have beat the thing to hell. It still is very sharp and the handle is fine. I've used it on various backpacking trips along with believe it or not, helped build my new kitchen (dont ask!). For the money I can honestly say, you get a lot of value here. The Firestarter still throws a good spark. I have done things to this knife to almost try to damage it but unsuccessful. I believe reviewers who might have complained early on with the quality issues have nothing to complain about any more. Customer service is top notch with this company and the employees at my local REI store have been very helpful with questions I orginally had before purchasing this product.
Let me explain
Ok, their are a lot of reviews that are saying this is "poor craftsmanship" or that the pummel breaks and it has a fatal flaw. When this knife first came out this was true. The pummel broke and the knife was pretty much just a good idea, not actually one that came through. However Gerber was contacted about this and now it is in my opinion, a great knife. Make sure that when you buy this that by the base of the knife the orange stripe between the handle and the pummel that it is pretty thick (about 2 mm)
Very sturdy knife, great at what it says. You can chop down branches pretty easily, very sharp blade for shaving or widdling. Also a nice grip, good fire starter, and very handy sharpener.
I removed the whistle from the knife to the sheath, i prefer it to having it on the knife because then it doest whip around.
The perfect camping/hiking knife
Since I bought this knife a few months back, I no longer use anything else on my backpacking trips. The blade stays sharp (sharpened it once after my first trip, then none since), and the firestarter worked very well for me after a few swipes - if anything, there are too many sparks. I've used it to cut tree roots and dig holes, then, after a rinse in the river, pieces of fruit for dinner. Just for fun, I tied a tree limb to the end of the handle (where two holes are placed specifically for this purpose) and made a spear, which flew reasonably well. After months of abuse, it still looks fairly new, though some of the blade's coating is starting to rub off in places. The only thing I haven't used extensively is the pommel - I know some people have reported problems with this, but I used it once to pound a nail and didn't encounter any issues.
Did what its supposed to do!
Due to the fact it is a Gerber, and I am a huge bear grylls fan, i had to give this knife a try. It was more comfortable than it looked in the packaging. it has a good weight to it, and is comfy and very sharp. the firestarter is kinda dinky and not sure how long it will last, the metal part ont he knife to strike it is cool, but its kinda sad i have to get my knife all dirty to make a spark. the sheath is ok, wish it was less mass produced, but it works. great knife! i love it. I also have a bear grylls adventure shirt, and it is so perfect for everything from hiking to 4 wheeling to whatever. get it now!
This knife was a very worthy buy! The some things that annoy me is the serated edge that covers half the blade and how soft the medal is. Also it says that the medal is high carbon but i found that gerbers mysterious steel is actually 1055 carbon wich isnt bad but not high carbon. The fire starter was tricky to get used to but I eventually found my personal best way to use it I have used it in almost every outdoor situation along with its brother the parang the only chage I made was paintinf the handle and sheath jet black for tactical purposes granted this isn't the best knife ever but it still deserves four stars.
This knife, simply put is beyond beastly. When Gerber made it for Bear Grylls, they had clearly been watching his shows, and anticipated more crazy tasks for his knives. I did remove the whistle, I do already have a whistle in my pack, but frankly it was annoying. The loops on the back of the knife could be a bit more loose, but they have loosened up over time, and should continue to do so. This knife has been put through many difficult tasks, cutting through bamboo, wood, making spears, stabbing through the hindquarters of a rabid Coyotee, this knife can do it all. Plain and simple, get it, it could save your life like it did mine.
I use this knife as the primary knife in my 24hour pack for Search and Rescue. Knife has a nice feel, fits with gloves, and is easy to find if you set in on the ground while doing something else because of the orange color. Sheath is nice, has a diamond stone built in as well as a flint (have not tried the flint) and the knife has a ground edge on the back of the blade for striking the flint saving the cutting edge. The hammer on the base of the handle is a nice feature which I am sure I will find a use for.
One of the best knives for the money
I picked this knife up to see if it really would live up to it's name. To my surprise it did. I really put this knfe to the test and it performed very well. The only thing I did not like was how soft the serraded edge is. I was able to remove several points just by splitting small wet wood to get to the dry center. I used the sharpener to staighten out the bent ones. The fire steel worked well. I field tested this knife as if my life depended on it and couldn't be more satisfied.