The Kizer Horn is Another New Azo Mai Release

The Kizer Horn, another design from the prolific Azo Mai, is set to release this year in both Bladesmith and Vanguard trim after a long delay. The Horn hits the EDC sweet spot in terms of size, but spices things up with a quirky design and, in its Vanguard variant, an unusual extra feature.

With a 3.19-inch blade, the Horn lands comfortably in the EDC category. Its blade shape is a showy take on the wharncliffe concept: it starts fairly wide at the base of the blade, but makes a vertiginous drop as it runs out to its lowered tip. The blade’s flamboyant profile doesn’t change the fact that it is, fundamentally, a wharncliffe, which means that it excels at detail-oriented slicing and piercing. The steel, naturally, varies between the Bladesmith and Vanguard variants, with S35VN and N690 on offer, respectively.

In either flavor, the Horn opens via flipper or blade cutout. But there are still a couple of key differences between the Vanguard and Bladesmith iterations when it comes to the opening method. The Vanguard model’s cutout is partially filled with a stepped steel element and its flipper tab is actually completely removable.

Now, given that the first time we saw the Horn was in its Bladesmith incarnation in January 2020, and the delay in its released presumably caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Bladesmith model may also be set to receive the revised cutout and removable tab; but as of now it lacks both of them.

There are the expected differences between the handles, too: the Bladesmith Horn has a titanium handle and frame lock mechanism, while the Vanguard model goes for a steel liner lock covered by micarta scales. The Vanguard Horn also has a reversible, loop-over, steel pocket clip instead of the sculpted titanium number like that on its higher-end counterpart. The Vanguard model is notably lighter, too, with a 3.25 oz. weight compared to the Bladesmith’s 4.1 oz.

The Horn is another design by the prolific Azo Mai. Most people will be familiar with Mai’s work through his many Kizer collaborations like the Begleiter; and he has more on the way later this year.

Knife in Featured Image: Kizer Horn