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Watch the video below to see how to open and close your Atomic Bear SWAT Knife. Although there is no assisted spring mechanism, this knife is easy to open quickly one handed. It requires may be 5 minutes of practice, but once you have mastered the technique, it gives a great feeling. Note how the thumb is used to push the thumb studs. There is a groove in the handle that let you easily push the blade out by may be a quarter of an inch. Once the blade is out, you can flicker the knife with a small but decisive movement of the wrist. Now. PLEASE! Make sure that nobody is near you when you practice or use your knife with this flickering technique!
When you close the knife, you can use your two hands if you prefer (unlike in the video below). It is safer. You can also close unlock the mechanism with your thumb. You want to locate the piece of metal that locks the blade, push it out of the way and then use your fingers to fold back the blade by may be one inch. Then, move your thumb out of the way and fully close the blade with your fingers. Now. PLEASE! Make sure that you clear the blade way. No finger! This is where people cut themselves. Not you!
The blade of a knife is obviously the trickiest part. Depending on the composition of the alloy, the blade will have different strengths and weaknesses.
We do describe a knife blade alloy with four major properties : corrosion resistance (rust), edge retention (how long does the blade keep its edge and used over and over), toughness (will it chips if I hit the blade on something hard) and hardness (how soft is the metal). The alloy alone can make a knife worth many hundred of dollars. It is not always worth the full extra expense. It costs a lot more to improve the alloy a tiny bit after a certain point.
Anyway, the point is: All alloys come with compromises. The Holy Grail would be a very easy to sharpen alloy with a great edge retention AND zero rusting… etc. Unfortunately, this does not exist yet. All blades can rust if not taken care of properly. Especially the ones with a better edge retention. It is a good practice to treat ALL your knives “love”!
If your knife comes into contact with salt water, or any corrosive substance, rinse it right away with fresh water (tap water will do). The SWAT knife is easier to clean due to the open frame design. If you are in the field, don’t worry. Wait until you get back to your base. Like your firearm, your knife needs some love and attention! When you have time, clean your knife with a little bit of soap before lubricating it (see below). To clean inside the handle where the blade sits, use cotton swabs. A tip here, you may want to tape the edge of the blade to make sure there is no water contact, but this is optional.
Even if (or especially if) you have the most expensive knife, you want to keep it dry. Never put away your knife with a dirty and wet blade. Use a cloth to dry your knife and if possible let it finish drying exposed to air. If you can, use a can of compressed air your any source of pressurized air. If you plan to put it away for a long term (example: between two hunting seasons), you want to oil the blade to make sure that moisture won’t generate rust. Ideally not in the sheath.
After you have cleaned and dried your knife, (see above) you want to apply lubricant on the working parts like the pivot point of your folding knife. Which lubricant? Check this forum to get different ideas. We like “fishing reel” oil. You want a light oil. A droplet of lubricant on each side of the pivot (exposed part) and one droplet on each side inside the handle. Then open and close the blade slowly to spread the lubricant uniformly inside the mechanism. SLOWLY open and close the blade as the lubricant sink in. Clean any excess of lubricant.