Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Review - Mora of Sweden Knives

I'm sure that you were excitedly awaiting the arrival of this next blog post. With the way that I had hyped up Mora knives, I expected you to be.

My experience with Moras actually goes back to my childhood. My father had purchased a Mora (actually a Frosts Mora) for me for my 10th birthday. I had no idea that it was a Mora. I just knew that it cut well and looked really cool. Only later, when I gained an appreciation for knives, did I realize that it was a Mora. I still have that knife to this day.

The Mora 711 has a rubber overmolded handle.
Fast forward to today. My fascination with Moras has never ended. In fact, I appreciate them now more than ever. In my opinion, they are the sharpest and highest quality knives for the money. I would put a Mora up against any blade on the market in terms of edge sharpness.

History

Mora of Sweden, as a company, has only existed since 2005. It was formed from the merger of Frosts Knivfabrik and KJ Eriksson. However, these two companies have been manufacturing knives for over a century. The name Mora, which comes from the town of Mora, where these knives are manufactured. The merger of these two companies has propelled Mora forward in terms of popularity and the variety of knives that they manufacture.

All Mora knives are made in Sweden, which is phenomenal considering that their basic model (Craftline Q 511) sells for less than $8. There are low-quality Chinese knock-offs out there, but since these blades are so inexpensive, why not get the real deal?

Mora Knife Construction

To have an inexpensive, but quality knife, Mora invests in the parts of the knife that matter, and saves money on less critical parts. With this philosophy in mind, they are able to give you one heck of a bang for your buck.

The basic construction of Mora knives is very simple. Mora gives you a razor-sharp knife in either Sanvik Stainless Steel or Carbon Steel. These blades are precisely ground and nicely polished. They do not look or feel cheap at all! The only drawback that I can realistically find is that most Mora knives do not have a full tang, meaning that the steel from the blade only extends partially into the handle. I have never found this to be a problem personally, but you probably wouldn't want to pound on the handle of a Mora too much or it might break.

The Mora Classic No. 2 is a simple, no-nonsense fixed blade.
Moras are known for their Scandinavian Grind (Scandi Grind), which creates a very strong blade edge. A Scandinavian Grind forms an edge profile that starts halfway down the blade and goes all the way to the tip. There is no secondary edge, which is found on most knives. When you look at the blade with the point facing you, you will see a triangularly shaped blade edge. This triangle gives amazing structural support for one of the strongest edge geometries available!

The handle on Moras is usually made of injection molded plastic, but can be made of wood. On more expensive models, the handles may have a rubber grip area. The sheath is also made of injection molded plastic. However, none of these handles or sheaths are poorly designed and perform very well. They aren't fancy, but they work.

Basically, a Mora is a knife that you can use for a season or two, and then afford to throw away. It's also a knife that you can afford to abuse, or even practice sharpening with, without having to worry about ruining an expensive knife.

Types of Mora Knives

The Craftline TopQ Electrician has a blade specific
to a certain job. In this case, the job is stripping wire.

There are dozens of different types of Mora knives. They range from standard fixed blades such as the Mora Classic Series, to specialized tools such as the Craftline TopQ Chisel or the Comfort Fishing 155 Filet Knife. Most standard Moras have about a 4-5" blade and offer slight variations on the handle, sheath or blade geometry. For an all-around knife, one of my favorites is the Companion MG, in either Carbon Steel or Stainless (they're both great).

Why a Mora?

As far as EDC (everyday carry) is concerned, a Mora would be an excellent choice if you are working outdoors, where concealment isn't a requirement. Normally, people carry folding knives so as not to scare others, while still having a functional cutting tool available. When working in the field, it is normal to see someone carrying a fixed blade knife, so having a larger knife such as the Mora isn't as big of a deal.

I hope that I have given you enough reasons to go out and get a Mora. Normally, I don't command people to buy something. However, if you're a knife enthusiast and haven't yet tried one out, then what are you waiting for. Go and get one now!

Have any of you had experiences with Moras? If so, let me know in the comments below.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Fixed Blades for EDC?

For the most part on EDC Blog, when I have talked about knives, it's mainly been about folding knives since these are the knives most likely to be carried daily. This hasn't really been fair, since there I have closed you guys off to the amazing world of fixed blade knives. The selection for fixed blades is even greater than that of folding knives, since they are used far more often in various tasks.

The handle of the CRKT M21 G10 are nice,
but not as comfortable as many fixed blades.
There are times when you may carry a fixed blade knife as part of your EDC (everyday carry) gear. These would probably be times that you are hiking, camping, working outdoors or about to enter an environment other than the suburban or urban places where many of us live and work.

Advantages to fixed blades are that they usually offer a better grip, can have more job-specific blade shapes, and are usually stronger than folding knives. If you're anticipating putting your knife to hard use, then a fixed blade should definitely be your carry knife for that day.

Another great reason to carry a fixed blade, is that, for the money, they're usually of higher quality. The intricate mechanisms that go into some folding knives can make them more expensive than fixed blades.

This Mora 511 may be the best value knife their is.
A great example when it comes to ultra high-value fixed blades is the knife manufacturer, Mora of Sweden. The knives that Mora makes are simple in their construction and design, but have some of the sharpest, nicest factory blade edges that I've seen. When you look at the price, you may be shocked to find that many of their knives sell for less than $20. A particular favorite of mine is the Mora 511, which comes it at under $10. I guarantee that you won't find a better blade for that price.

Look to this blog for a more detailed look into the knife manufacturer, Mora, in my next post.