Poltergeist Works Sidus Added to Real Steel’s Free Series

[CORRECTION 6/30/20: In the original article we stated that the Sidus FREE was a non-locking slipjoint; this is incorrect. It is still a liner lock folder, albeit one with a non-locking blade. The article has been changed to reflect this.]

Poltergeist Works and Real Steel’s newest release is rolling out in the form of the Sidus FREE. The Sidus FREE brings the same feature set as the original 2019 release but with an altered, more widely legal opening method.

The Sidus debuted as a sort of sequel to the Terra design. It maintained a similar large footprint as that knife, packing in a 3.54-inch drop point blade with a full flat grind. This well-balanced shape gave the Sidus the capabilities to tackle smaller chores as well as ones that require a larger, more robust tool.

The Sidus FREE doesn’t make any changes to the blade shape itself, but there is an alteration in the opening method. In lieu of an thumb cutout for one-handed opening, the FREE has a long groove cut into the blade for two-handed opening.

In comparison to the Terra, the Sidus took the biggest departure from its predecessor in the handle design, favoring a more refined, organic profile: a large forward finger groove and a swelling area behind it to fill the palm. Unsurprisingly, there are no changes to the handle design for the Free variation, and it retains the liner lock we saw on the original.

The Sidus is the sixth model to join the FREE series, following other releases like the Horus and the Bushcraft Folder. This is a series reserved exclusively for models that also have a two-hand opening counterpart; thus the Ostap Hel-designed Gslip, which is only available as a slipjoint, isn’t part of this series.

RSK is turning handle options into a key part of its strategy. We’ve seen that take form this year with the introduction of their customization service, but there were feints towards this direction last year: when the locking Sidus came out it sported some unusual scale material options. Out of the gate, the FREE is available in three different handle materials: the expected black G-10 and black Micarta, or the more exotic shredded carbon fiber with glow in the dark element that turned heads on the original.

Knife in Featured Image: Real Steel Sidus FREE