Back in the days of my youth, when a hunter headed out to the field, he usually carried a fixed-blade sheath knife on his belt. The one serious exception was the Buck 110 folder. Someone carrying a Buck 110 in a leather belt pouch was considered just as well equipped as someone who was carrying a fixed-blade knife.
The classic Buck 110 is still available today. May it always be so. But there is also a variant of that classic design that has been updated for easier pocket carry. It has a thinner, synthetic handle and a pocket clip. It is the Buck 110 Slim Hunter.
I recently tested the Buck 110 Slim Hunter. I found it to be an outstanding knife for everyday carry (EDC) as well as for field use. It is sharp, durable, easy to carry, made in these United States, and reasonably priced. I purchased mine for $37.99 and found it comparable in quality to many knives that cost more than $100. If you need a good knife for EDC and/or field use, then the Buck 110 Slim Hunter would be an excellent choice.
The Buck 110 Slim Hunter is one of several items that I purchased using a gift card from the Youth Ministry Staff at our church. They gave me the gift card because I have been helping with the Youth Ministry of our church by providing oversight and administrative support.
I did not anticipate that I would first become seriously involved in youth ministry in my 60s. Way back when I was about to graduate from college and start seminary, I was a candidate to become the youth pastor of a church. After due consideration, that church decided to get aluminum siding instead.
Almost 40 years later, I finally waded deeply into the waters of youth ministry. It was quite an adventure.
I found the handle of the Buck 110 Slim Hunter to be thinner than I was expecting. I guess the name Slim Hunter should have tipped me off. In any case, thinning down the handle was an excellent design choice when adapting the 110 for pocket carry, as was the choice of glass-filled nylon as the handle material. The knife slips easily into and out of a pocket, and rides comfortably there on the removable and reversible pocket clip. The handle also provides an excellent grip surface once the knife has been removed from the pocket.
Thumb studs on the blade allow for easy one-handed opening. The blade locks solidly into place with a decisive click. It does require two hands to release the robust lock back mechanism, unless one pushes the back of the blade against one’s thigh or another object while depressing the lock button.
The blade was razor-sharp, right out of the box. I had no trouble shaving hair from the back of my left forearm.
I used the knife for a variety of different tasks during the testing period. For example, a friend was using an electric chainsaw and accidentally got a rope tangled up with the chain. The knife cut through the errant rope fibers on the sprocket as if they were butter, making removing them much easier. I used the knife to open packages, cut grape stems, and a host of other tasks. It functioned well for all of them.
I also used the knife to help repair my wife, “Kari’s” hand mixer. She had received the mixer as a bridal shower present 39 years ago. Recently the power cord developed a break. I opened up the mixer case, removed the old power cord, used the Buck 110 to strip the insulation from the two wires at one end of a new power cord, installed the new cord, and reassembled the case. The mixer now runs as well as it did when it was brand new.
When I returned the mixer to Kari, I told her that it was ready for another 39 years of use. She replied that she did not think that we would last that long. I told her that we certainly would. I said that in 39 years I would be lying on my deathbed, and that I would hear the sound of the mixer in the kitchen. Then I would smell the fragrance of chocolate chip cookies in the oven. I would lower myself from the bed to the floor, and crawl down the hallway to the kitchen. There I would see a batch of cookies on a cooling rack on the counter. I would stretch out my hand to enjoy one last chocolate chip cookie before I died. And Kari would hit my hand with a spatula, and say, “Those are for the funeral!”
I was also able to use the knife to open toy packaging at my youngest grandson’s birthday party. It is amazing the amount of tape, cardboard, zip ties, and other materials that are used to secure toys in their packaging. The 3.75 inch blade of the Buck 110 presents some danger when several small children are running around nearby. I turned aside from the children who were thronging around me and held the packages up high to avoid cutting any grandchildren. I succeeded in the goal of not cutting any grandchildren. But the angle was kind of awkward, and while I was opening the third package, I managed to slash the middle joint of the middle finger of my left hand with the blade. It is a testimony to the sharpness of the blade that the cut was almost totally painless. A dull blade hurts a lot more. God’s word tells us that he that cleaveth wood shall be endangered thereby, so it stands to reason that he who uses a knife may be cut from time to time.
Small Wound Care
Note: I am not a medical professional. For reliable advice on small wound care, please consult your primary care physician, take a Red Cross First Aid Training Course, or seek help from some other reliable healthcare professional. The following information is just a factual account of my own experiences, and is not intended as medical advice.
Anyway, the knife opened up a flap of skin about the size of half a dime, with the flat edge of the flap still attached to the skin over the joint. I could see that it was going to bleed a lot, so I closed the knife and headed for the paper towel roll in the kitchen. I could imagine my daughter and son-in-law beginning to wonder if they needed to take sharp objects away from the old man. I eventually got the bleeding stopped, and covered the wound with a band-aid.
The next day we went to the zoo as part of the continued birthday celebration. I lifted the birthday boy up on my shoulders, and in the process reopened the wound. The band-aid was quickly saturated with blood. Kari gave me a tissue from her purse to cover the band-aid. Blood was soon seeping through the tissue as well. Fortunately, we were already on our way to the exit, so I was soon back to my daughter’s house and able to get things cleaned up again.
Later that evening, Kari and I arrived back at our own home. I didn’t want the wound to reopen at church the next day, so I went down to my workshop in the basement and sealed the wound with superglue. My wife buys packages from the local dollar store that each contain five small tubes of superglue. One of these small tubes is more than sufficient to seal a wound.
The next day, I covered the wound with a Band-aid, and headed for church. Because the wound was on a joint, the band-aid did not adhere well. I needed to replace it by the time I got to church.
Fortunately, our church had a good supply of Nexcare Waterproof Bandages. They adhere much better than standard bandages, and have the added benefit that I can wash my hands while wearing them without getting the wound wet. The bandages do have a tendency to keep moisture in as well as out, so it is good to take them off at night so that the wound can breathe and dry a bit. But the Nexcare bandages do a better job of protecting a wound than any other bandages that I have ever used.
The following day I spent a couple of hours in the morning splitting wood by hand. I expected the wound to reopen due to the stresses created by the work. I was wrong. The combination of superglue and a Nexcare Waterproof Bandage kept the wound clean and closed.
This is not the first time that I have used the combination of superglue and Nexcare Waterproof Bandages for small wound care, and have found it to be highly effective.
My paternal grandfather always recommended crushed plantain weed leaves for small wound care. My maternal grandfather always recommended turpentine. My grandchildren’s maternal grandfather recommends superglue and Nexcare Waterproof Bandages. May the reader be able to separate the wheat from the chaff in all of this grandfatherly advice.
Some Technical Specifications
The blade of the Buck 110 Slim Hunter is made of 420HC cryogenic heat-treated stainless steel, with a Rockwell hardness of 58. This steel is more budget-friendly than some other alternatives, while being tough, corrosion-resistant, and easy to hone.
The clip point blade is 3.75 inches long. The knife is 4 7/8 inches closed, and weighs just 2.8 ounces.
The original Buck 110 was designed in 1963. Tens of millions of units of the iconic design have been manufactured over the years, not counting the innumerable clones and knock-offs of varying quality made by other vendors, both domestically and overseas.
A card was included in the packaging with the Buck “Forever Warranty” printed on one side, and “A Message From The Buck Family” on the other side. I decided to pass on that message:
As my father Chuck Buck would say, if this is your first Buck knife, “Welcome aboard.” You are now part of a very large family. We think of each one of our users as a member of the Buck Knives family, and we take care of our own.
Now that you are family, you might want to know a little more about us. Dad said it best when he said, “The fantastic growth of Buck Knives, Inc. was no accident. From the beginning, we determined to make God the Senior Partner. In a crisis, the problem was turned over to Him, and He hasn’t failed to help us with the answer. Each knife must reflect the integrity of management. If sometimes we fail on our end, because we are human, we find it imperative to do our utmost to make it right. If any of you are troubled or perplexed and looking for answers, may we invite you to look to Him, for God loves you.”
CJ Buck, CEO, Chairman of Buck Knives
“For God loved the world so much that He gave His only son, so that anyone who believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” – John 3:16
The Buck 110 Slim Hunter is a sharp, durable, reasonably priced knife for EDC and/or field use. I highly recommend it.
I did not receive any financial or other inducement to mention any vendor, product, or service in this article.