The New Year keeps bringing good news for knife people: yesterday, Cold Steel announced their new products for 2016. After an ambitious 2015 that saw a rebrand and a significant steel upgrade on many of their blades, Cold Steel is holding steady for 2016.
Among the many new swords, rubber trainers, historical weapons, kitchen knives, and axes that Cold Steel has in store were several standout new blades. The Colossus is certainly hard to overlook – with an extra-broad 4” blade and 10” overall length, this folder lives up to its name, and might just displace everything else from your pocket. “That super-wide leaf shaped blade offers a huge amount of shearing potential,” says a Cold Steel spokesperson. “I would say it slices better than almost any other blade we’ve made.” Designed by knifemaker Mike Wallace, the Colossus comes in a choice of satin or black DLC coated blades and features ‘cratered’ sculpted G-10 handles and Cold Steel’s proprietary Tri-Ad lock.
Also new is the Broken Skull, a limited edition knife that takes its name from the Texas ranch of its design collaborator, ‘Stone Cold’ Steve Austin. Austin is an outspoken advocate for carrying a knife, and often insists that nobody should ever be caught without one on his popular podcast. Cold Steel founder and martial arts expert Lynn Thompson himself was a guest on the show last year, where the two talked knives, self-defense, and big-game hunting. “Steve is a long-time friend of ours at Cold Steel… He has a lot of experience with knives and for him they are a daily tool that he depends upon,” said Cold Steel. Austin has been spotted with a Chris Reeve Knives Sebenza in the past, but sounded his approval of the Andrew Demko-designed Cold Steel Swift last year when he tweeted about it to his three million followers. This collaboration seems natural given Austin’s lifelong love of knives and should prove quite popular given his considerable fame.
The Broken Skull folder itself is a long but svelte knife inspired by Cold Steel’s classic Lone Star design, a knife long discontinued but still remembered by Cold Steel fans. “[Austin] wanted a EDC knife that was capable of all the everyday chores that a ranch owner and hunter might encounter, but he also wanted something incredibly lightweight and easy to carry,” said Cold Steel. Weighting in at just 3.1 oz with a 4” CTS-XHP steel blade, the Broken Skull comes in a number of different colored solid G10 handles, and should prove to be a trustworthy companion with its reliable Tri-Ad lock.
Cold Steel’s first assisted opener, the Demko-designed Swift, receives an incremental change this year: a secondary safety designed to keep the blade from deploying unintentionally and reinforce the lockup when engaged. “The XS safety is another Demko innovation, offering not only an extra level of safety on an assisted knife by locking it closed in the pocket, but by actually reinforcing a Tri-Ad lock when open, making it even stronger,” says Cold Steel.
Following on the heels of the featherweight Lucky two-blade slipjoint released last year, Cold Steel unveiled a version with a single plain-edged blade that further reduces the weight and thickness. And the Finn Hawk is a new fixed-blade version of their popular Finn Wolf, a scandi-ground knife that should compare favorably to similar knives from Mora of Sweden.
Cold Steel fans are still waiting to get their hands on the 4-Max, a production version of one of Andrew Demko’s own custom designs that will be 100% made in America. And according to Cold Steel, it may be close – “I’m hoping to see the 4-Max released very soon .. [it] is eagerly awaited by everyone,” says Cold Steel. “It posed a huge number of challenges, and it’s been a real battle… the knife is made to Andrew’s exact specifications, not only in terms of high end materials, but in fit, finish and performance.”
Knife featured in image: Cold Steel Colossus