Down Under Razorback Backcountry Knife Review

Down Under Knives is a new cutlery company started by founders with a decade of full-time experience in the knife industry. In fact, the founders of Down Under Knives have been making and selling knives, evaluating hundreds of designs for both business and pleasure, and working with metal and leather for most of their lives.

After noting the minor deficiencies in other bowie knife designs, the company was conceived around the shared vision to create the ultimate bowie knife– a knife that should have been designed and built decades ago and yet no one has done so.

After accomplishing their goal of designing and building the “perfect” bowie knife in the form of “The Outback” bowie knife, the designers at Down Under turned their attention to the construction of a slightly smaller survival knife that they chose to name “The Razorback.”

The Down Under “Razorback” survival knife features an overall length of 12 inches with a highly polished, 7 inch, drop point blade made from 1/4”, 440C, stainless steel (Rockwell Hardness unknown) with a recurved edge, a shallow saber grind and a sharpened section along the back of the spine for splitting kindling or severing bone. In addition, it also features a brass quillion and pommel with a semi-full tang covered by a stacked leather handle. Last, the knife is supplied with a heavy-duty leather sheath.

As far as what it’s manufacturer have to say about the knife, Down Under states

We have seen a lot of heavy-blade style hunting knives that almost got it right. In fact, we have seen so many that we finally made it our mission to remove the “almost” part and see what this style is really capable of.

Enter the Razorback with all of the features that worked and none of the awkward blockiness often associated with this kind of knife. Not satisfied with making yet another slat of metal with as many sharp angles as you can fit into 12 inches of steel, we elected to give it the pleasing curves and traditional materials that our customers have grown to know and love in our other products.

This one feels even better that it looks too!

In addition, the back of the blade has a gentle downward curve for easy skinning and a bone cracker cut to avoid accidental piercing and to provide help in guiding the blade. Plus, the rear portion of the spine has a razor sharp whittling edge for easy kindling and, the front heavy blade profile provides all the chopping and cutting power this style is famous for.

Also, the semi-full tang construction and full leather handle provide a sure grip in all conditions, wet or dry. Add a uniquely styled, heavy leather, sheath with genuine bone ornaments and a quick-release catch, and we figure this one’s going to be tough to beat for a specialized hunting/camping knife.

To those words we say “Amen!!!!

Although we don’t usually use someone else’s words to state my opinion of any knife that we write about on this web site, in this case, we felt that an exception was in order since someone at Down Under has so eloquently stated the case for us!

However, I would like to add that in my opinion, this is one gorgeous survival knife! In addition, both the blade and the handle are VERY well designed and the materials they have used to construct the knife are an excellent choice. As a matter of fact, my only complaint about the knife (and it is a very minor one) is that the designers used brass for the quillion and pommel-  I would have preferred for them to use stainless steel like they have on some others instead because it’s harder and it doesn’t tarnish.

However, the choice of 440C for the blade is a very wise one since 440C is a very hard steel (0.95-1.20% Carbon) and yet, it also contains Manganese (1.0%) and Molybdenum (0.75%) which increases toughness and hardenability as well as containing 16% to 18% Chromium which makes it highly corrosion resistant.

In addition, the use of stacked leather for the handle is also a wise choice because it is a very tough material that is comfortable in the hand and yet, is impervious to water, abrasion, cracking, chipping or splitting and it provide the user with a positive grip when his hands are wet.

Thus, overall, we am VERY impressed with the Down Under “Razorback” survival knife. In fact of all of the large survival knives I have reviewed on this web site, this knife is definitely in our top five. Also, with a reasonable price point, it is not over priced for such a large, well designed, and meticulously finished survival knife of such high quality. Consequently, I would personally love to own one!

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