Question of the Day: How should we “Unleash the Kraken?”


Batoning a piece of firewood with the Will Wood’s Bladeworks’ Kraken. How would you like me to test this incredibly burly knife?

The motto of Woods’ Bladeworks is “Redefining Elegance through Brutality”. After getting to see/hold/use Will’s creations, I can say that the motto fits his work to a tee. His Titan 2 in particular is something to behold. I am not sure what I would do with a folder the size of a newborn infant, but I sure as heck would like to have one.

The Kraken fixed blade is nothing to sneeze at either. I saw bigger knives at the Blade Show, but most of these simply appeared to be blown up versions of smaller knives. The Kraken is different in that it was specifically designed to be as big as it is. When you start looking more carefully into the design you see an art and subtlety that make this a very functional knife as well. 

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At first glance the Kraken just looks like a very stout, very big fixed blade, but there is considerable subtlety to the design as well.

The sub-hilt is probably the most noticeable feature. Instead of being at the front of the handle, it is set further back. This allows the user to place either one or two fingers in front, depending on the level of leverage or fine control desired. The slightly forward tilt to the blade counteracts the tendency of a typical blade to ride up and lose leverage when making a cut – especially a slash. I spent a bit of time talking blade geometry with Will over the weekend, and this tendency to ride up out of a cut is why Will puts a Wharncliffe blade on many of his knives. The forward tilt of the Kraken serves the same purpose since the pressure/leverage actually increases rather than decreases 2/3 of the way through as it would when reaching the point where the blade rises away from the material being cut. (I hope that made sense). It is also the largest hunk of finished S30V I have ever held. The micarta scales are grippy and will only get more so with moisture or blood.

I haven’t done much with the Kraken yet. But I did spend about a half hour last night cutting stuff and batoning a piece of firewood. So far I am impressed. I intend to put the knife through the same battery of tests as I put the Mora Bushcraft, as I see the Kraken filling the same role – at least for me. But I believe that while I believe I pushed the Mora to the outside of its envelope, there is still considerable reserve capacity within Will’s knife.

I am not setting out to find the Kraken’s failure point, Will does want the knife back. But he wants us to give the knife a workout, and thus I am looking for ideas from you.

What tests would you like to see me put the Kraken through? Be creative. I anticipate cutting meat – maybe dismembering a groundhog. I want to cut, shave and chop wood. I want to test the knife’s piercing power. I want to see how the knife functions in delicate tasks. In short, I want to throw the kitchen sink at it, and see how it holds up. And if the task happens to be a bit silly, so much the better. It makes for fun testing and entertaining reading.



  1. Mike L says:

    Clay here are a couple of quick suggestions LOL

    1 – strap it to a staff and go wild pig hunting. Just like Tred Barta !
    2 – carve a 3 masted British war ship (inside a bottle pls) !
    3 – finally do a timed build of a Malay deadfall trap. Classic from The Most Dangerous Game and later Predator with Arnold !

    1. All good suggestions, but I would rather go pig hunting with a .308.

      I do plan on cutting some saplings down and lashing them into a tripod that could be used for a cooking pot. Its been a while and I want to show my kids.

      Another test I just thought up is to stack about 7″ of 12″x12″ pieces of cardboard and do a piercing/penetration test. I think it is going to become a new addition to the TTAK knife testing protocol, at least for our larger knives.

  2. Roy says:

    Shave half your face, then split up some firewood, then without sharpening, shave the other half of your face.

  3. Will Woods says:

    Personally I think the cardboard stab test is a great place to start. Also consider rope, bone, and denim as good materials to test.

    1. It made it through a piece of 1/4 ply with no problem

  4. kap says:

    try various sizes of Rope, Open a few cans of Beans, take out a few screws Phillips and standard, cut up a dozen card board boxes, use it as a whittler, make tent stakes, process a pig, cut up 50 lbs of meat, cut & trim raw leather of various sizes! shave bark off of dry diamond willow! make a dozen fray sticks! use the pommel to drive a nail or two,

  5. David says:

    Baton a store bought turkey – possibly frozen.

    Use it as an ice pick.

    Gut a deer.

    Hang a dead pig and go stab it ala Gangs of New York.

    Dip it in salt water & let it sit out for a day.

    Stab an old metal barrel.

    Find a tarp/sail and stab and slide down ala The Goonies.

    Food prep w/ it.

    Saw off your callouses w/ it (after food prep).

    Open carry w/ it.

    Try to break glass w/ the pommel.

    Tape the edges & grapple w/ a friend. Try to stab/cut and disarm each other.

    Stab an through old coat on a mannequin.

    Cut coupons w/ it.

    Carve “Kraken” in a tree.

    Throw it at a tree – and a kitchen sink 🙂

  6. Terry Warlock says:

    Have you considered taking a page from the Cold Steel manual of torture testing? 🙂 Pretty tough workout for a blade AND entertaining.

    Seriously though, there’s a thread on Blade Forums that has someone thoroughly abusing a BK2 Campanion to see what kind of abuse and use it can take. Some really good ideas there, even if some of the tests are ah, shall we say, pretty crazy (@_@)

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Question of the Day: How should we “Unleash the Kraken?”

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