About this project
“If Things Went Really Bad in the World and You Could Only Have One Knife for the Rest of Your Life, Which Knife Would You Choose?”
I get asked this question all the time…
Hi, my name is David. I'm a former Marine, a Survival Instructor, Entrepreneur, and the Founder and Owner of Ultimate Survival Tips, a popular, survival blog and YouTube Channel (recently ranked by Watch Mojo as the #1 Survivalist Channel) with over 300,000 subscribers.
Over the years, I’ve used, tested, and reviewed hundreds of knives… but I've never found an all-in-one knife that could do everything I need for camping, backpacking, survival, tactical training, and general utility use wherever I go.
So in 2014, I decided to develop a solution… I started sketching, integrating elements from blades I loved, along with innovations that had never been seen before in one knife.
Let me introduce you to… MSK-1: Multi-Scenario Knife.
The MSK-1 is much more than an innovative knife that’s big enough for any job, small enough for any kit, and tough enough for any situation. It’s a complete survival system that you’ll be able to use for your lifetime and then pass on to the next generation.
When the original MSK-1 sketches were created in early 2014, we made the decision NOT to compromise on materials or cut any corners. To me this meant the knife HAD to be designed and manufactured in the USA and made from the finest materials. I remember saying…
“Dude, we’re gonna do this right or we’re not going to do it at all.”
Now, I realize... at the end of the day… my relentless commitment to excellence means this knife is not going to fit every budget… I wish it did…
But for those who support this project, the MSK-1 may be the single best outdoor gear investment you ever make.
Here are just a few of the epic features, advantages, and benefits included with every MSK-1.
HANDLE SURVIVAL KIT INCLUDES:
- 1.5" Mini Fire Steel Rod: Quick emergency fire starting
- 2 Waterproof FAT (First Aid Tinder) Packs: For starting fires, bandaid, disinfecting wounds
- 3 Ranger Bands: Secure gear and extend the burn time of your tinder for fire starting
- 20' of 50 lb. Line: Fishing, snares, mending gear or emergency wound stitching
- 1 Magnetized Sewing Needle: Navigation, or patching gear
- 3 Hooks and Sinkers: Fishing
- 2 Two Safety Pins: Emergency gear repair
- 1 Liter Fire Resistant Food Grade Bag: Collect and purify water
I never understood why so many companies design a great knife only to wrap it in a terrible sheath, with limited upgrade and carry options.
So we went back to the drawing board and spent over a year, rethinking what a survival knife sheath should be.
The result is the Switchback ACS - Adaptable Carry System.
GET TWO AMAZING SHEATHS IN ONE... Nylon AND Kydex.
Our Switchback ACS - Adaptable Carry System is the first sheath package that switches from a feature-rich black, ballistic Nylon sheath, to a low profile, black Kydex tactical sheath by removing a single bolt.
CARRY MSK-1 ANY WAY YOU WANT
Drop Leg, Belt, Pack or MOLLE Carry - YOU Choose!
Easily convert the Switchback ACS Sheath System to transport your MSK-1 in either the standard (left or right handed) belt or drop leg carry positions.
Both the Nylon AND Kydex Sheath builds come standard WITH ALL the hardware you need to attach your MSK-1 to a pack or MOLLE compatible gear.
TRANSFORM YOUR SHEATH INTO A MAD SURVIVAL KIT
Take Along the Gear that's MOST Important to YOU!
Both Nylon AND Kydex sheaths have a generous array of grommet holes that are designed to fit optional add-on tools like the MSK-1 fire steel holder and MSK-Mini Companion knife.
MOLLE webbing on the front of the nylon sheath accepts add-on MSK-1 Kit Pouches (currently in development), so you can customize your sheath and carry the gear that’s most important to you.
- Full tang, fixed blade, fine edge
- Blade material: D2 high carbon, semi-stainless, tool steel
- Blade thickness: 0.25 inches (0.64 centimeters)
- Handle material: Canvas micarta
- Blade length: 4.6 inches (11.7 centimeter)
- Overall length: 11.3 inches (28.6 centimeter)
- Weight: 15.8 ounces (478 grams)
- Handle survival kit
- Switchback ACS 2-in-1 sheath system: Ballistic Nylon and Kydex
Made in the USA with American Materials
- Lifetime Warranty
- We'll even sharpen and tune your MSK-1 (just send it to us).
As you can see… there’s innovation behind every detail of this knife… But all this adds up to more than a tough, versatile, all-purpose outdoor knife…
The MSK-1 is a comprehensive survival knife system that’s designed to survive life’s worst, and help you enjoy life’s best.
Now we need your help. Your contribution will enable us to complete our first production run… funding the custom tooling, material purchases and highly skilled craftsman required to build each knife.
With your support, we’ll bring this one-of-a-kind, handcrafted, Made in the USA knife to you and to the world.
And please share this campaign with your friends and family.
THANK YOU for your encouragement and kind support!
And remember, BE PREPARED… Because You Never Know.
David, Founder & Owner
We have done our best to realistically estimate delivery of your rewards for this campaign. Here is a timeline of what you can expect when you back this project.
MSK-1 in the News - At Blade Show - On YouTube
NEW $150,000 (1000% Funded) Stretch Goal UNLOCKS MORE Awesome Perks for Backers. Watch Video (Below) for Details...
BAM! $100,000 Stretch Goal Met! EVERY Backer Gets FREE Perks... Watch Video (Below) for Details...
Risks and challenges
We have done our best to mitigate the risks and challenges for this project and realistically estimate delivery of your rewards for this campaign - because, that's the FUN part. Everyone is bummed out when rewards are late, and we don’t want that to happen.
We are crafting every MSK-1 and MSK-1 Mini from raw materials. Procurement of American-Made materials, and making each knife (to our precise standards) from scratch takes time and very skilled craftsman. Depending on how many rewards are selected, we have a multi-tier game plan to ramp up production to fulfill ALL rewards from this campaign in 2016.
To do this we have vetted additional manufacturers in the Northwestern United States, close to our primary manufacturing facility (outside of Portland, Oregon), so that we can: oversee production, control quality and ensure on-time fulfillment.
Jeff Freeman (the design and manufacturing lead of the MSK-1 project), was the lead designer and innovation manager at Gerber Legendary Blades (one of the top knife companies in the world) for nearly two decades. He is now the owner of Freeman Outdoor Gear, a highly regarded company known for their innovative designs and tough product builds. Jeff brings his design, project management, manufacturing, quality control, logistics, and fulfillment experience to this project - to ensure that every MSK-1 meets the precise specifications and tight tolerances that we require, and is delivered on time.
I (David) have spent nearly two decades in Corporate America as a marketing, business and product development director. I've been an outdoorsman and have lived in rural areas for most of my adult life.
I spend a lot of time in the woods using, testing and reviewing outdoor gear as the founder / owner of Ultimate Survival Tips. So my laboratory for developing and testing MSK-1 is my backyard, the Endless Mountains of North Central Pennsylvania.
Some companies launch a new product after only one round of design and prototyping, but we have been through FOUR rounds of prototypes and field testing of the MSK-1 that has spanned over 24 months. We were under no time constraint or pressure to get the MSK-1 to market. Our goal was to get it right - period.
I remember saying to our team, “Dude’s we’re going to do this right, or we’re not going to do it at all.”
So the MSK-1 is fully tested and ready for production. All of our upfront time, and testing reduces the likelihood of last minute changes that could cause delays in production and fulfillment.
We have also built buffer time into our production schedule (see above) to compensate for a reasonable number of currently unforeseen delays. This is not our first rodeo. Stuff happens, and we are prepared to work through problems, remediate issues and deliver your rewards on time.
Now, we are ready to produce the MSK-1 - with your help.
One last thing. We are committed to open communication with you, our backers. You will be the first to know if anything comes along that may affect our fulfillment timeline.
Our team is committed to being honest and transparent should any problems or delays occur along the way. We are fully prepared to make sure this project happens in the stated timeline. We're all in this together and can't wait to deliver the awesome rewards that you have been offered through this campaign.
One last thing... We are excited to announce that on May 3, 2016 we were granted a design patent for the MSK-1 by the United States Patent and Trademark office.
That's all for now. Let us know if you have any further questions... AND... Thank you for your support!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Glad you asked!
Blade Show in Atlanta Georgia, June 3rd - June 5th - is over. Sorry you missed it. But hundreds of people stopped by to experience MSK-1.
However, you can see out their reactions, by checking out this video on our YouTube Channel: https://youtu.be/egkBj0iS2OI
At the end of the Kickstarter Campaign, we will send out a survey to everyone who pledges. On the survey, you will have the ability to select your handle color. You will also be able to add options to your pledge, like the kit pouch, MSK-1 Mini, Tee shirt etc.
The MSK-1 Mini Neck Knife is designed to be a rugged, all-purpose, everyday carry survival blade that you can wear around your neck, slip in a pocket or pack, and bolt on… as a companion blade to our MSK-1 survival knife sheath system.
The Mini is fashioned from a single piece of .156 inch (or 4 millimeter) thick - black powder coated, semi-stainless, D2 high carbon steel. WE chose D2 for it’s amazing edge retention, toughness and wear resistance.
The 2.6 inch (6.6 Centimeter) edge is honed and then polished to razor sharp. The mild belly terminates at a clip point making the Mini fantastic for drilling, piercing, processing game… carving, slicing, fine detail and general utility cutting work.
The clipped false edge allows thumb or forefinger to sit naturally above the tip for precision cutting tasks.
With an overall length of 6.2 inches (or 15.8 centimeters)… the MSK-1 Mini provides a generous 3.5 inch handle that is ergonomically contoured for comfort and safety. Spine side jimpling and the sloped finger guard increase, grip and control.
The long center cutout reduces weight and is designed to hold a two inch mini fire steel rod OR MSK-1 handle survival kit components - for emergency use… when wrapped with your favorite paracord.
Strategically placed holes make it easy to wrap the Mini handle with paracord or lash the knife to a stick to make a spear.
The butt end pommel is designed to scrape bark and grind things… while it doubles as a capable firesteel striker.
Each mini comes with a sleek black, kydex sheath and the hardware needed to bolt the mini onto our MSK-1 Adaptable Carry System.
Well, everyone likes FREE stuff... So our stretch goals will either add some additional perks (AKA "Free Stuff) to your existing pledge or possibly unlock and a cool upgrade option that was not previously offered in the campaign.
A Stretch Goal is a campaign goal beyond the original funding goal that you can help us reach to receive your addition perks or optional upgrade options.
For EXAMPLE: MSK-1 Exceeded our Funding Goal in about 27 Hours from this campaign launch. So on Thursday May 19th we set a Stretch Goal of $100,000 by the end of day Wednesday, June 1st.
As you share this campaign with others in your personal and social media circles you help us attain this goal. In a very real sense you are our partners in spreading the word.
So, when we make this goal here's what our backers will get:
1) ANY Pledge Level Gets: "7 Keys to Choosing the Right Backpack, Rucksack or Bug Out Bag" It's an email Report that we will email to you after the campaign.
2) ANYONE Who Pledged to Get an MSK Mini Knife in any package will get a 2" mini ferro / fire steel rod that fits in the handle of their MSK Mini Knife.
3) ANYONE Who Pledged to Get an MSK-1 Knife, will get their choice of handle color (OD Green, Chestnut Brown or Juicy Orange).
See how it works? ALSO See the VIDEO Update for May 19th in the "UPDATES" Tab toward the top of this page to see all the rewards and some cool features of the MSK-1 knives and sheaths.
If your budget is limited try to get in on the ULTIMATE "EARLY BIRD" + Kydex sheath. This requires the least investment.
The COOL thing is, that the MSK-1 Survival System is completely modular. So, as your budget allows, you will be able to add components in the future such as the outer Nylon sheath, firesteel rod and holder, MSK-Mini knife, kit pouches and other cool stuff we have in the works.
What If I Want to Mix and Match Pledge Rewards... Say I Want Two "EARLY BIRD" Specials and a SURVIVAL BUNDLE Can I Do This?
We can help you out. Please send us a message via the Kickstarter Campaign page and we can help you customize your pledge to get EXACTLY what you want.
Yes, Every MSK-1 is handcrafted the same, right in the USA by highly skilled craftsman with the finest components available in America and to very precise standards.
Also, every MSK-1 comes with the handle survival kit.
The only difference is the options you select in your MSK-1 for your MSK-1 pledge and options that may be offered as upgrade or for FREE thoughout this campaing as stretch goals are met. (See the "UPDATES" tab on this page for the latest news on the MSK-1).
Ahhh... I thought you'd ask!
To start, it's a ridiculously rugged and versatile survival / EDC neck knife that bolts onto your Kydex or Nylon sheath. With the addition of cord (and we recommend a breakaway clasp) it can be worn around the neck.
It also slides easily in a pocket, pack, pouch or purse.
We will shoot a video review in and post in Week 2. Stand by for more...
Sure is! The ACS sheath is TOTALLY Ambidextrous! Remove bolt. Spin Kydex liner around for left hand carry. Insert bolt. Chop chop, cut cut, slice slice with left hand.
17 degrees per side, 34 included. This is a good angle for both sharpness and ability to hold and edge during hard use. Also,17 degrees is a setting on popular multi-angle sharpening clamps as seen on Lansky sharpening systems.
If you understand any of what I am about to share, you are a Knife Geek Ninja!!! Here goes...
Heat treat for MSK-1 / D2 is magic - LOL and a tightly held company secret!.... Naw, well, actually we follow the manufacturer's recommended process to end up with Rc 59-60. It's that easy.
Preheat: Heat to 1100-1200°F (595-650°C), equalize, then to
1400-1450°F (760-790°C), equalize.
1825-1875°F(995-1025°). Hold time at temperature 30-45 minutes.
Quench: Air or positive pressure quench (2 bar minimum) to below 150°F (65°C).
400-1000°F(205-540°C).Temper 2 hours minimum each time or at least 1 hour per inch(25mm) of thickness, double Temper. Cool to room temperature in between
Refrigeration after the first temper may improve long term dimensions stability by transforming
retained austenite. Any refrigeration treatment must be followed by a temper.
There you have it... Easy breezy!
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