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Designed and Written by Brian Griffin


If you spend enough time discussing knives the subject of "survival," knives will inevitably pop up. Following that train of thought the opinion of "the best survival knife is the one you have on you" will always be expressed. There is a lot of truth in that statement in as much as the knife you carry the most is more likely to be the cutting tool you will have available should you encounter a survival situation, that is only logical. This is in essence the philosophy the TIBO was designed under after forty years of experience in wilderness travels and over a decade of intensive study in small knife use under various conditions in the wilds.

It is quite common that at the end of the journey, or on long breaks, that packs will be dropped and heavier equipment will be removed in order to allow the body the opportunity to rest and relax. At this moment the gear you have on your person will be the gear you have to work with while going about gathering fire wood, collecting water, or going about other business of setting camp. Should you become separated from the group or the camp, by what ever means, be it because of; a weather event, and encounter with a wild animal, disorientation, or a fall then the only tools you will have to work with will be what you have in your pockets or around your neck.

I designed the TIBO to perform as a back up knife in case of separation from primary gear. I designed it to be light enough not to be a burden so that keeping it handy was easy to do. I also designed the knife to be very functional in multiple roles in a wilderness environment whether opening freeze-dried meals, skinning game, scaling fish, or in fire craft. Beginning at the tip it has a distal taper and sharp point for ease of penetration in various materials, and tasks like removing splinters and boring small holes. It has 2.5-inch blade that is adequate for most common cutting task that will be encountered. It has a continuous-curve edge geometry and high grind for great slicing capability, but with a radius plunge and some steel left in the spine to increase strength and enhance durability in hard use. It has an ample handle that offers secure purchase which is skeletonized to minimize weight, but is reinforced in strategic locations for added strength. The texture on the handle and blade is also strategically placed to ensure a secure purchase in various overhand, underhand, and pinch-grip holds under whatever conditions may come. This offers the user a secure purchase even under the slick conditions of dealing with fat and talo encountered when skinning game, the oils encountered when scaling fish, or starting fire with muddy, cold, or fatigued hands even in muddy conditions.

The features that are built into this knife make it a very versatile tool, one that not only functions as a back-up neck knife but at 6.25-inches total length and 1.9 ounces it will serve very well as a stand-alone fixed blade for minimalist backpackers who count every gram as well . It is also well suited to being carried in a piggy-back role paired up with a larger knife, and it fits well in the utility pouch of the ballistic nylon sheaths that are supplied with many larger TOPS knives. If you are wanting a very functional and light-weight small knife, one that multitasks well in various roles and offers a secure grip in even very bad conditions then the TOPS TIBO was purpose-designed to meet your needs.

Knife review click: HERE.

Knife Type Fixed Blade, Neck
Overall Length 6.50"
Blade Length 2.75"
Blade Thickness 0.130"
Blade Shape Hunters Point
Blade Steel 1095 RC 56-58
Blade Finish Black Traction Coating
Handle Style Skeletonized
Sheath Included Yes
Sheath Material Kydex
Designer Brian Griffin

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