I do not have a lot of experience with TOPS knives, though I have been meaning to remedy that. While I do not limit myself to American-made knives the way that some do, I appreciate any company that is dedicated to creating jobs and making products in the USA. I am going to make a point of becoming more familiar with their offerings at this year’s Blade Show.
For some reason I missed their SHOT Show releases this year, but their new bushcraft knife, the Brakimo, caught my eye when it crossed my content trawl. It was designed by Joe Flowers, an expert in all things survival and bushcraft related (and a few other fields besides) and he is the purveyor of Bushcraft Global – a survival field school which takes its students to Central and South America for the ultimate survival experience. The Brakimo prototype was tested extensively in Colombia during a September 2015 school.
From TOPS Knives:
The purpose of the Brakimo (pronounced BRAH-key-moe), designed by Joe Flowers, was to be a backup to a machete or to serve as a main camp knife. He runs a survival school of sorts called Bushcraft Global, which takes people of all skill levels into the Amazonian jungle to teach them survival skills. Not just skills specific to the jungle, but a mindset that will serve people regardless of location. He needed a knife that could be the flagship knife of the company and has designed the Brakimo to fit that need.
It has a fairly wide blade profile combined with TOPS’ modified Scandi grind that gives it great cutting and splitting power. The tip narrows dramatically to make it useful for drilling holes for bow-drill fires, blow gun mouth pieces, traps, etc. The simple design is perfect for many different uses. Made with 1095 high carbon steel, it’s easy to maintain the edge while out in the field. We found through testing on the 2015 Bushcraft Global trip that by keeping it dry whenever possible, rust was not an issue.
The word Brakimo comes from the Matis language (which is unwritten as far as we are aware). The Matis is a tribe found in Brazil that was uncontacted by the modern world until 1975-1976. The tribe has a unique way of life that would challenge the survival skills of any survival expert. If you’re lucky enough to participate in a Bushcraft Global adventure, odds are that you’ll get to meet one of these extraordinary people and learn a few of the skills they use to survive daily life in the jungle.
There is depression in the micarta handle which holds the top of a spindle when using a fire-drill and the knife comes with a Kydex sheath.
Knife Type Fixed Blade Overall Length 10.00″ Blade Length 5.25″ Cutting Edge 5.25″ Blade Thickness 0.190″ Blade Steel 1095 RC 56-58 Blade Finish Tumble Finish Handle Material Green Canvas Micarta Knife Weight 9.4oz Weight w/ Sheath 12.0oz Sheath Included Yes Sheath Material Black Kydex Sheath Clip Rotating Injection Molded Nylon Designer Joe Flowers
Our friend Tim at Everyday Tactical Vids had a chance to check out the Brakimo at SHOT as well as the companion machete. Good looking blades.
The Brakimo is on special at TOPS right now. You can buy one for a limited time for $160, a $40 savings from MSRP.