The Inexpensive Tac-Force Speedster Outdoor Knife

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I have a habit of suggesting this piece of gear or that, especially when it is value priced.  This is not to say that a bargain priced piece of equipment is going to perform the same as something more expensive but that sometimes, for the task at hand, inexpensive or even cheap will do just fine.

Over the years I have suggested bargain-priced deals on whistles, knives, fire-starters, and flashlights. Many times I refer to these items as “almost free” because at under $5 or $10, they are practically giveaways.  That being said, my primary bug-out-bag and survival kit includes higher quality items that I know will stand up to the rigors of a SHTF world – if it ever gets to that, of course.

Tac Force Knife

Today I would like to share some thoughts on one of those items that I consider an inexpensive favorite: the Tac-Force Speedster Outdoor Knife.  I have recruited Shelly, known around here as the Survival Husband, to help out since he is never without a knife on his person.

Review of the Tac-Force TF-705 Tactical, Rescue and Outdoor Knife

Before I start, let me first say I love my Kershaw “Oh So Sweet” knife.  It goes everywhere with me 24/7 and the only time it is not on my person is when I am on an airplane of sleeping.  When Gaye asked me to evaluate the Tac-Force Speedster, I felt it would be no contest.

Surprisingly, though, for an inexpensive alternative, I did like the Tac-Force Speedster and consider it a great value at under $10.00.

Features and Observations

Here are the basic features along with my observations.

The knife has an anodized stainless steel blade that is approximately 3.5 inches long.  A nice feature is that the back half of the blade is serrated.  It is a little heavier than the Kershaw plus it is a bit larger and bulkier.

The knife has an industrial look that is not surprising since it is marketed as a tactical knife.  On the other hand, while the one we have is black, it can be purchased in various colors, everything from red, to green to pink, to cammo.  There is nothing industrial about the color pink!

I found the variable open notch in upper back of blade handy for all sorts of things and most particularly removing nails.  On the negative side, I found the belt clip to be a bit large and the knife itself a little too bulky and heavy to carry around in a pants pocket.   (I always carry my “oh so sweet” in my pants pocket – always.)

The blade is extremely sharp out of the box, and the serrated part of blade is much more usable than most other knives with a similar serrated edge.  This would be very useful if I ever needed to cut myself or someone else out of their seat belt following a moving vehicle accident.

The Tac-Force has a flip, swing-out blade similar to the”oh so sweet”.  You can manually release the blade lock to open the blade to bypass the flip function.  The flip  function is a little bit more difficult than the Kershaw but may loosen after a bit of use.

I am very impressed with this knife – so much so I’m having Gaye order one for each of our cars, each of our secondary bug-out bags, and one for her purse, maybe in pink.  My recommendation is that if you can only afford to purchase an inexpensive folding knife, the Tac-Force is a good choice at under $10 plus it won’t won’t break the bank.

One last thing:  the Tac-Force Speedster is advertised as a tactical style knife and I would agree.  I personally consider the Kershaw OSO Sweet to be more utilitarian, but then again, it is more than double the price although still an excellent value.

The Final Word

Not to disagree, but I find the blade on the Tac-Force much easier to open and close than the Kershaw.  Perhaps it is just me but I get a bit intimated by the spring mechanism on the OSO Sweet.  My guess, however, is that I do not use it enough to be comfortable with it.  Also, Shelly is always around to do the heavy lifting so I rely on him to do most of the blade work.

I actually weighed the two knives and as a reference point, the Kershaw OSO Sweet weighed in at 3.2 ounces and the Tac-Force at 4.4 ounces.  That is a significant difference and something to keep in mind if you plan to carry this knife in your pocket.

Enjoy your next adventure through common sense and thoughtful preparation!
Gaye

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Bargain Bin:  Here are links to three of my favorite knives as well as some other bargain priced items.

Tac Force TF-705BK Tactical Assisted Opening Folding Knife 4.5-Inch Closed: This is a great knife that is currently priced at $8.73 with free shopping.  Not only that, it is ranked as the #1 best seller at Amazon in both the camping and hunting knives categories.  The reviews raved about this knife so I bought one, used it, and and can recommend it.

Kershaw OSO Sweet Knife:  You can’t beat a Kershaw knife for quality at a reasonable price point.  Typically under $23, this knife will become your favorite for every day carry.  And that includes the ladies, too.

Morakniv Craftline Q Allround Fixed Blade Utility Knife: FAVORITE! Also known as the Mora 511, this is now my favorite knife. It is made of Swedish steel and is super sharp.  Many Backdoor Survival have emailed me indicating this is now their favorite knife too. I paid $12 for this knife; it was worth $12 and of course is a steal at $8.77.

Striker Hand Tools Magnetic Hands-Free Task Light: I just ordered this so I can’t endorse it from first hand experience BUT the concept seems solid, the reviews are good, and it is only $6.  You know how I love a bargain!

FordEx Group 300lm Mini Cree Led FlashlightFAVORITE! Here we go with another flashlight.  At the time of this writing, this one is only $3.80 with free shipping.  It is super mini sized, bright and waterproof.  Plus, it uses a single, standard AA sized battery.

Smith’s PP1 Pocket Pal Multifunction Sharpener:  I wrote about this is in the article The Easy Way to Sharpen a Knife Without Spending a Lot of Money.  It sharpens everything from pocket knives to kitchen blades.  Portable and easy to use and for about $8.

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Comments

The Inexpensive Tac-Force Speedster Outdoor Knife — 6 Comments

  1. I was in the store one day and bought a $2 lock back knife. I knew that I was going to be tying some things in the back of my pickup and that I had left my pocket knife at home. That was about 6 months ago. I thought that if it lasted for that one day it was worth the two dollars. I’ve still got it and it works fine for the jobs I use it for. So, my feeling is that it was a good bargain, even if it breaks today. I don’t mind if it gets banged around, wet, oily or even lost – it’s paid for itself.
    So, occasionally a super cheap item, that you expect to be trash, will surprise you!

    • Another example is those mini-cree flashlights for $3.80. They are a good value especially when used with recharged alkaline batteries. I had expected the flashlight to be a throwaway but my gosh, it is a sturdy little thing. I keep adding to my flashlight collection LOL.

    • It is a decent knife for MacGyvering stuff but does not take the place of a heavy duty, fixed-blade tactical knife. In my opinion, the blade of a folding pocket knife is not long enough or strong enough to chop up bark, clear debris, or perform other wilderness functions.

      That said, it is a great knife that can do all of the things that a pocket knife can do and more. It is better than no knife or a flimsy blade. Plus it is very affordable.

  2. If you are using a knife for a survival situation where your life may depend on it, I would go for the best you can afford. For a good analysis of what knife to have check the United States Rescue and Special Operations Group web site. These are former USA special forces. They have been there and done that. Their motto is “Hard Professionals for Hard Operations.” Anyway following site gives their explanation, and their choice of blades.

    http://usrsog.org/blades.htm

  3. Just came across this article – nice review. My background is military, and we’ve always considered things like knives, flashlights, etc. to be expendable items – not to be carelessly treated or abused, of course, but no need to treat them with kid gloves. They have to be good enough to do their job, that’s it. The A.F. Survival Knife costs about $25 (Gov’t price) and is positively crude – machining marks all over it, asymmetrical machining, something a knife connoisseur would turn their nose up at. Thing is, it works.

    My wife got a similar knife “free”, just pay S&H”. It’s not a bad knife, with a seat belt cutter and a glass breaker. I keep it in the car – we cart the grand kids around a lot and if we ever had to get them out of the car in a hurry….. And if it gets left behind in the car, or lost on scene, so what?

    Gaye, I love your reviews of inexpensive yet cost effective items. The idea of spending a couple of hundred dollars + or even a hundred dollars on a knife or flashlight is totally foreign to me, and I have never felt under equipped with less than “top drawer” stuff.

    Keep up the good work – and stay warm and dry.

    soupbone

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