First Look: Hogue Debuts EX-06 at USN Show

The Usual Suspects Network held their annual knife show this weekend at Planet Hollywood in Las Vegas. It is one of the higher profile national shows at this point, but I believe it is unusual for a production company to debut a knife there.

Hogue has not yet released any public statement about their new EX-06 flipper, but designer Allen Elishewitz has apparently let the cat out of the bag on Instagram with the post above.


As I said, there are no details available at this point, but rest assured I will work my contacts at Hogue on Tuesday to try to find out more. They also apparently announced a sponsorship of MMA heavyweight champion Frank Mir.


For those who are unfamiliar with the Usual Suspects Network (which I imagine is most of you), Blade Magazine profiled the group a while back:

In January 2002, a group of online knife-collector friends graduated from IRC (Internet Relay Chat) to a Forum of their own with 20 members.

They were called the “Usual Suspects” by a prominent Knife Purveyor for their mutual love of Emerson Custom Knives. As their numbers grew, they began to dominate local and national knife shows like the Blade Show in Atlanta. Their green badges conspicuous along with miles of para-cord, numerous knife clips protruding from their pockets, high-end packs, titanium gadgets, and silver jewelry made them stand out in the crowd.

Just who are these guys?

I first heard of the Usual Suspects in late 2002 from Knife maker Ernest Emerson at a California show.  I had seen my first Emerson Knife in 1989 while I was a Marine at Camp Pendleton and had been an Emerson collector since the 90’s.  After logging in, I was interested in all the other tactical knives and lights on the site, but kept seeing the acronym “USN”.  Being a Marine and knowing Emerson’s connection to the Naval Specwar community, I quickly felt like a fish out of water and logged out. I thought they were talking about the “US Navy”.  At a later show I ran into Emerson’s then shop foreman, Derek Russell (a former sailor, himself) who corrected me that USN meant “Usual Suspects Network”.  OK, so acronyms were never my strong suit!

I joined again in 2003 and have been there ever since.  In 2004 I was honored with the title of “Usual Suspect”, the highest tier in the community and most coveted title.  In 2005, I was asked to join the Admin Team to assist in the day-to-day running of the forum.

By 2008, the original forum had grown to some 20,000 members; at the Shot show in Las Vegas that year one of them remarked off-handedly…”There are enough of us to start our own Knife Show!”

In September 2009, that dream became a reality with the First Annual Usual Suspects Gathering at Planet Hollywood Hotel and casino in Las Vegas, Nevada.  It was followed up my a more successful sequel in 2010!  Promoted by Larry Brahms of BladeArt, a successful music and motion picture producer; the show has received critical acclaim for the unconventional, yet effective layout to the show.

I know a number of people who are members of USN, but I haven’t paid particularly close attention. As their show continues to grow in influence and popularity, I imagine I will be doing more so in the future.


  1. Crenshaw says:

    The dramatic stepped bevel will probably be replaced with a ground bevel in the production pieces.

    As to the USN gathering, after Blade it is now one of the largest national level knife shows.

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First Look: Hogue Debuts EX-06 at USN Show

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