Hogue EX01

Type: Folding
Blade: 102mm
Lock: Button
Avg Price: $140.00

Based on 1 User Reviews

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-Price Paid: $140.00
-Used for Every Day Carry
-Owned for 3 months


NOTE: This review is of the 3.5-inch drop point blade with aluminum handles.

At first glance, this looks like a seriously beefy blade, and in hand it does not disappoint. At 4.6oz of tank-like aluminum and steel, this is not a knife to be trifled with. I personally use it for every day carry, but it can fulfill the role of a dedicated or dual-duty self defense knife quite ably. The 154CM blade came with a notably sharp, mirror polished edge and a handsome tumbled-type finish. Despite the edge keenness, the almost 4mm thick blade stock and partial-flat primary grind make this more battle axe than surgical scalpel (not better or worse, just thought you should know).

In hand, the knife sets the user's hand back significantly away from the blade itself, which extends reach in martial bladecraft situations. The texturing/jimping is far coarser than what I'm used to, but between this and the deep finger choil, my hand isn't slipping forward at all under heavy use. The anodized aluminum has a matte-type finish on it, not too chalky but still retains enough texture to aid grip.

To open the EX01, Hogue and Allen Elishewitz have provided ambidextrous thumbstuds. However, these terraced studs just do not provide enough grip for a confident authoritative opening. When trying to flip this knife open, about 25% of the time I only manage to get it halfway out, despite flicking my wrist and pushing forward on the thumbstud. On the plus side, these studs are sufficiently low-profile that they don't abrade my hands when retrieving other items stowed in my pockets.

The EX01 uses a button-style lock augmented by a sliding secondary lock that helps ensure the blade is not inadvertently folded during use. The button lock is quite robust and provides positive feedback, but I found myself accidentally activating the sliding lock from time to time, which made closing the blade a minute-long exercise in frustration. I ended up sticking a tiny piece of gaffers tape inside the handle to hold the slider in the unlocked position. Another niggle is that the pivot pin/screw and button lock are roughly the same size and positioned next to one another on the handle. I occasionally find myself trying futilely bearing down the pivot screw with my thumb instead of pressing the release button to close the blade.

In pocket, the reversible spoon-style pocket clip strikes a great balance of sitting low enough and being tight enough for dependable retention, being loose enough to accommodate cargo pants or jeans pockets easily, and not abrading clothing after some use.

On the aesthetic front, the level of build quality from Hogue and attention to detail in this Allen Elishewitz design is clearly evident. From the polished hardware to the intricate handle texturing, this thing just oozes pride of ownership to me.

The doppleganger release button and blade pivot are a bit unsettling, the thumbstuds need work and for $140 I'd much prefer a more exotic steel than 154CM, but this is one gorgeous and extremely well-built knife that takes on jobs with aplomb and looks great doing it.

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