DPx Gear Hest 2.0 - Review
DPx Gear Hest F/2.0 Specifications:
Blade is German D2 tool steel polished then milspec phosphate coated
Tumble finish 6AL4v GR5 titanium alloy frame and spring frame lock
Patented LionSTEEL RotoBlock(R) system
American-made G10 handle scale
Removable stainless steel clip and glass breaker (comes with replacement smooth head screw) with integrated lanyard attachment
1/4" hex driver
Unique wire stripper, jimping and hard lashing points
Thumb grip/bottle opener
Open length: 7.63"
Closed length: 4.93"
Blade Thickness: 0.197"
Blade length: 3.67"
Cutting edge: 3.10"
Titanium alloy frame thickness: 0.165"
G10 scale thickness: 0.165"
Weight: 5.1 ounces
Today I am reviewing the DPx Gear Hest/F 2.0 folder. As many of you know there were several production issues with the first incarnation. I never owned a 1.0 so I cannot speak to those issues but I can say that I so far have not suffered any of those issues (lock-up, etc.). I've been using this knife as my EDC knife for the last 6 weeks or so and it has performed great. From breaking down cardboard boxes to butchering a deer... yes, I said butchering a deer, this knife performed great and still holds a sharp edge with a SOLID lock-up.
Lets take a look at the business end of this knife. The blade is constructed using a German D2 steel with a milspec phosphate black coating. Out of the box it had a very respectable sharp edge. One of the first things that you will surely notice out of the box is the incredible positive lock up as it snaps into place. The locking mechanism of the DPx HEST/2.0 includes a disc stop that prevents over extension of the frame lock. In addition the patented LionSTEEL RotoBlock system can be rotated locking the knife open. These features are not often found on a knife of this price point, but typically found on high end folders.
Integrated into the thick 5mm D2 steel blade you'll find wire strippers and a thumb grip/bottle opener. The wire stripper does work but takes a little patience when stripping the wires. And the bottle opener works like a charm. The wire strippers and bottle opener also function very well as jimping for a good purchase grip on the knife. It has ambidextrous thumb studs for left or right hand deployment. You can see the pivot screw which requires the special DPx skull tool (included) to adjust the knifes opening/closing smoothness. Out of the box it did need tweaked just a little but it was more tweaking to my personal liking.
Here you can see after weeks of cutting, chopping and gutting a deer it still has a adequate blade center. You can also see the 5mm thick German D2 steel blade.
Here you can see the lockup. It hasn't moved at all over the last few weeks. Fully deployed this knife has absolutely no side/side , in/out wiggle at all. You can see here it has a partially open rear spine which makes cleaning and dusting out super easy. The jimping on the lock bar is very adequate for a good grip for closing the blade.
The titanium handle, I love it! The finish is awesome it feels solid and looks great. Here you can also get a better look at the patented LionSTEEL RotoBlock system. Spin it one way and it locks the lock-bar in place so you cannot slide the lock-bar over and close the knife.
Here you can get a good look at the American made G10 scale. The G10 scale has a rough textured G10 finish unlike other G10 knives I've handled that had more of a glossy finished G10. Even with deer blood on the scale it had a firm non-slip grip. You'll see the 1/4" hex driver adapter. You could also use the hole for attaching a lanyard as well.
Last but not least I am going to go over the pocket clip and the glass breaker. I haven't been able to test the glass breaker but as you can see it has a very aggressive point so I am pretty sure it would do the job. If for whatever reason you'd like to remove the glass breaker DPx included a replacement screw for you to do that. On to the pocket clip. The pocket clip is "ok". I feel there can be some improvements. I will illustrate my issues with the pocket clip in the following pictures:
When it's in the pocket it slides up approx 1.5" until the belly groove at the end of the clip grabs the pocket seam (shown below).
I think if DPx brought the pocket clip in another 2-3mm it would eliminate the 1.5" of "free-play". Now please keep in mind, the knife has never fell out of my pocket due to this "free-play".
The DPx HEST/F 2.0 is, without a doubt, precisely that; the embodiment of durability, versatility and utility; in the configuration of a folder, adding to the element of portability. Overall I do really like this knife and it's become my EDC knife. We'll see how the HEST/F 2.0 holds up over time.
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