Cold Steel’s Frenzy II, by Pat Cascio

Cold Steel never ceases to amaze me, and this time around they sent me their new Frenzy II folding knife for testing. Long time friend and owner of Cold Steel, Lynn Thompson knows that our readers at SurvivalBlog keep asking me to review large folding knives.  Lynn is only too willing and ready to show us some of his newest and coolest blades.


Cold Steel Knife and Tool Company  is a knife and tool company dedicated to creating the world’s strongest and sharpest knives. They also create swords, tomahawks, machetes, cutlery, and tools for every day use. One of the things that always catches my attention with most of the very large folding knives that Cold Steel produces is that most of them are light weight, believe it or not, so they’re easy to carry in pants pockets. However, keep in mind, that some pants don’t have deep pockets. It is a bit difficult to tuck a long folding knife in the front pocket. Many people will tuck a folder in their waistband of their pants. The pocket clip holding the knife in the pocket.

I received the Cold Steel Frenzy II while I was still in the hospital recovering from hip replacement surgery. Needless to say, they had a “no weapons” policy, so my wife didn’t bring the Frenzy II to me. I was chompin’ at the bit to get home and see the new Frenzy, which my oldest daughter was only too happy to play with until I got home. She also takes many of my pictures for my articles on SurvivalBlog. The Frenzy II was sitting on the end table, next to my spot on the sofa, when I arrived home several days later.

Overview of Frenzy II

The first things that caught my attention about the Frenzy II (and there is a Frenzy I, which has different colored handle scales) was how long and slim the knife was. It has a 5½-inch long blade made out of Carpenter CTS HP alloy steel, which is one of the hi-tech powdered steels. This steel is very tough stuff to be sure, and it holds an edge a good long time, too. The overall length of the folder is 12¼ inches long. Wow! Yet, the Frenzy only weighs 5.7 ounces, so it’s very light considering how large the knife is. And, it has the Tri-Ad lock, which is one of the strongest, if not “the” strongest, locking mechanism on a folding knife to come down the pike.

Overall, one will notice how thick the spine of the Frenzy II is. Yet the blade is very slim, and the tip of the blade is needle sharp for piercing through some very tough material. There are ambidextrous thumb studs on the blade; however, it takes some practice to get the blade opened using your thumb, because of the long length of the blade and the super-stout Tri-Ad lock. It just takes practice, but it’s easy enough to do. There is a pocket/clothing clip, and it is reversible so the knife can be carried in either front pocket. The handle material is blue/black G10, which is almost bullet proof material, and it is very attractive, too, adding a classy touch to the overall look of the knife. Custom knife maker Andrew Demko designed the Frenzy as well as the Tri-Ad lock and many other Cold Steel products.

Smaller Folder Knives

As most readers know, a larger knife can do more chores than smaller knives. However, there are times when a much smaller folding knife can perform some chores easier than a larger folder. The Frenzy II, with its slim design, can perform quite a few chores around the homestead as well as serving light-weight survival chores as well.


I try to carry handguns and knives that I’m testing for articles for at least two weeks whenever possible. In this case, I was pretty much stuck at home for several weeks, and I was wearing either shorts or sweat pants, so I couldn’t carry the Frenzy for this part of my testing. However, I enlisted a friend to carry the Frenzy for me, and he reported back that, while the knife is long it wasn’t heavy and after a day or two, he didn’t even notice the knife was in his right front pocket . That’s nice and what I like to hear, when it comes to big folding knives. The blade design is something akin to a Warncliff style blade, and it is an outstanding design for up-close cutting chores where precision is needed.

In the Kitchen and On Blackberry Vines

My daughter, who was my caregiver for the first week I was home from the hospital, and my wife, who cared for me the second week and then some, were both more than willing to test the Frenzy around the kitchen. It is an outstanding “kitchen” knife, easily slicing and dicing everything put before it. My oldest daughter even sliced some very thick blackberry vines, and we are forever having a battle with this non-native species of berry vines. It is no easy task cutting a blackberry vine in two, but the Frenzy was up to the task, easily!

On Cardboard

As usual, FedEx and UPS are always showing up at our rural digs almost daily with packages that need to be cut open. We used the Cold Steel Frenzy II for this purpose. It effortlessly sliced cardboard boxes. Believe it or not, cardboard is very tough on a knife’s edge, dulling lesser knives in short order. It was not so with the Frenzy. In over two weeks or more of testing, the Frenzy didn’t need the blade touched-up.

Hair-Poppin’ Sharpness

I did want to see how easy it would be to bring the blade back to hair-poppin’ sharpness. It didn’t take but a few minutes on some ceramic sticks, and the blade was factory new. And, I still maintain that Cold Steel set the gold standard when it comes to factory sharp knives. They never fail to deliver in this respect.

Urban Survival Knife

When it comes to survival, many people envision wilderness survival situations, and there are many, to be sure, where a good, large folding knife can come in handy. However, I see the Frenzy II as more of an urban survival knife. Let’s face facts; the streets in our country are not getting any safer these days, and the police can’t be every place at once. I can just see the look on the face of some bad guy who is trying to do you harm in some form, and you draw the Frenzy out of your pocket and flick open the 5½-inch blade.

I’m pretty sure they will remember they had an appointment on the other side of town. Then they will readily head in that direction. You don’t always have to use a knife to defend yourself; sometimes just the appearance of a large folding knife in your hand can end a fight before it even begins. Keep that in mind.

Full retail on the Frenzy II is $239. It’s not cheap but not all that expensive either, considering the overall size of the knife and the quality. It is every bit as nice as any custom folder I’ve ever laid my eyes on. It is “that” nicely made. Check one out. I think you’ll love it.


  1. Nice review. This is not my favorite blade profile, but there are certainly some good uses I could put it to, such as you have described. Not sure if I can justify the $200+ to add it to my collection. I am a big fan of Cold Steel, so if I happen across one, I may change my mind.

    I’d like to recommend your purchase and review of another knife I’ve come by. It is by CI MA. I found it on Amazon for <$20. The title is "CIMA High hardness Full-Tang outdoor survival fixed blade hunting knife". You should be able to find it easy enough. It looks to be a bit of a knockoff of the ESEE 3 or 5, but at a much lower price.

    I am a Busse man and a Cold Steel fan, and have the majority of my blade collection in these two vendors. But I have bought 7 of these CI MA knives already, and intend to buy more. I have been testing them for about a month now, and they have proven to be quite worthy. They are quite sharp out of the box, and do come with a kydex and cordura belt clip sheath, which is functional but does leave a bit to be desired. However, for the price point, I have to say this is probably one of the best value for money knives I've ever seen or heard of. I intend to buy more, as I've given quite a few of mine away already to friends and family.

    Maybe you can take a look? I'd have emailed you but no idea what your address is, which is I suppose as it should be.

  2. Interesting knife, I can’t wait to see one in person. I’d say that the blade looks more like some of the modern interpretations of a Seax blade than a Wharncliffe blade. Although I don’t think it would be a problem with this knife, I own a number of Coldsteel knives and most of them seem to be designed for people with smaller hands. Does Lynn Thompson have small hands?

  3. I’m a Cold Steel fan, but + $200 is more than I’m willing to pay for any knife (I’m only a casual collector). Can’t say I’m too fond of the looks on it either. Guess I’ll stick to my CS Recon 1 for now…..

  4. Hi Pat,

    Thanks for your suggestions. Right now I need to put my money into what I consider more “essential items”.
    I might have to reliay I the OL’KA-BAR”, to get me through, in the meantime.


    Sheepdog and family.

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