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Benchmade is capping off a year-long campaign of updating classic designs with a Cabela’s exclusive rendition of the iconic Osborne 940.
In 2015, Benchmade introduced new boxes and updated its website with a new, slick interface. If 2015 was the ‘Year of New Packaging’ for the company, then 2016 has been the ‘Year of New Product.’ The 2016 catalog, which debuted the likes of the Crooked River, proved that Benchmade wasn’t afraid to move in new directions. But even as the company stepped out of its comfort zone, old favorites like the 940 weren’t forgotten.
The Cabela’s exclusive 940-1601 is the latest in a long line of 2016 product variations from Benchmade. Earlier this year the Griptilian family saw a comprehensive update, with better steel, a deep carry clip, and G-10 handle scales. The G-10 940-2 debuted, as did the G-10 580 Barrage, another Warren Osborne design. These variant models didn’t replace the originals. Instead, they’re offered alongside them, giving customers options at different price points.
Befitting Benchmade’s recent direction, the 940-1601 is a fusion of modern and traditional materials. It clearly takes cues from two of Benchmade’s most well-received releases: the Crooked River and the 940-1. The knife’s ¾ carbon fiber handle scale is capped by a handsome wood bolster. The classic 3.4” Osborne reverse tanto blade is made of D2, a utilitarian tool steel that has been popular in hunting knives for years. In the hand, the 940-1601 might be the best iteration of this knife yet, with a near-perfect center of gravity that feels lively and balanced.
The 940-1601 should help reassure Cabela’s fans that the hunting/outdoor chain is still going strong despite recent changes. Cabela’s was acquired by Bass Pro Shops last week in a $5.5 billion cash deal that will combine two of the largest outdoor retailers in the United States. Both Bass Pro and Cabela’s will continue to operate under their own brands. The merger is expected to close in the first half of 2017.
Knife featured in image: Benchmade 940-1601 Cabela’s Exclusive