After a tactical class that dealt with knives as weapons, one of the biggest points was the speed factor of deployment of a folding knife versus a fixed blade. Since my daily carry knife is a rather large folder (crkt M16-14) I decided I needed a dedicated self-defense blade for areas when a firearm is either not legally allowed or practical.
My choice was a Ka-Bar TDI. I picked the large blade after handling both large and small at a gun show. The Large has significantly more weight, a thicker blade and when gripped, the bottom of the handle can also be used as a weapon if necessary. I’ve been a tanto-tip fan because of their added strength and ease of cutting deep even at shallow angles. The model I found on ebay had serrations, but they were pretty much pointless….so I decided to attempt to replicate the “Veff” serrations on my folder.
This is what the blade started as:
I laid out the pattern with painters tape on the blade itself and set out with my Dremel. I started with a carbide cutoff wheel to cut new serrations using the olds ones as a pattern marker. Then the grinding wheel to shape the overall edge of the serrations. I used a diamond grinder to fine-shape the edge of each serration and finally a steel wire brush wheel to get rid of any inconsistencies in the surface of each serration. Finally with a round diamond hand-sharpener, I went at it for about half an hour.
The end result shown next to the folder and the custom 5 o’clock IWB sheath.
Close up comparison of the serrations:
One might ask “why” would I put such serrations on a personal defense knife. The angled setup of the TDI lends itself very well to slashing as well as stabbing allowing equal control for both.
1. In a slashing motion, the serrations will start the cut faster, significantly extend the inflicted wound and inflict significantly more damage to both muscle and nerves than a plain edge.
2. In a stabbing motion, serrations will cause significantly more trauma upon removal than a fixed blade. It also easily converts a stab into a longer slash pending the manner of removal.
3. A serrated blade like this one is not as likely to glance off of clothing. While it may not completely penetrate to the skin when put up against something like thick jackets, it will fair much better than a plain-edged blade.
God-forbid I ever have a real-world test of my skills and equipment, but If I am in a situation where for whatever reason I don’t have, or can’t use my gun, I’m confident this is the next best tool.