You probably won’t find the new fixed blade Buck Model 245 MWG on the Buck® Knives Official Website list of their Hunting and Tactical Knives just yet, because it is so new; I received one of the first samples. Sure, a month or two ago, many websites released a press release– the same I received– on the Model 245 MWG Buck knife, but these sites do an injustice to the product and the reader, if you ask me, by simply posting a press release without actually testing the product.
Everyone is probably familiar with the most famous Buck folding knife on the market– their Model 110. I know a lot of folks in the knife industry, and I’m told that a very good knife design has a life of about three years. That means the buying public typically stops buying that knife design for whatever reason within that timeframe. The Model 110 started out in 1963. Yes, you read that right. It was in 1963, and this folding knife is still going strong. To be sure, the Model 110 is the most copied lock-back folding knife in the world, bar none! Many uninformed folks, who see any type of large, lock-back folding knife, will refer to it as “a Buck”. As many folks claim that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, if that’s true, then Buck Knives has been flattered for more than 50 years on the Model 110 alone. I won’t even go into some of Buck’s fixed blade hunting knives, which also have been copied by many companies.
There is some conjecture as to when “Buck Knives” actually started. I’ve gone ’round and ’round with one magazine editor about this. (I won’t mention his name, though.) Buck Knives claims they started in 1902, when Hoytt Buck made his first knife. Some claim Buck Knives didn’t start until WWII, when the call went out for folders and fixed blade knives for our troops. Some say Buck Knives started after WWI, and some say it didn’t really start until the 1960s. Look, if I started making knives 20 years ago and just today started calling myself “Cascio Custom Knives”, I would claim that even though I didn’t actually call myself a “company” I was still making knives 20 years ago. So, if Buck Knives says they started in 1902, that’s fine with me. Take the argument up with Buck and not with me. In the end, does it really matter when Buck Knives got their start?
I’m sure that many SurvivalBlog readers are big fans of the original “Red Dawn” movie, where a group of teens fight in WWIII as guerrillas, but did you really catch that when the group was evacuating the town and stopped at the gas station/general store before heading to the mountains some of them grabbed some Buck Knives? “Jed” is seen carrying a folding knife on his belt in most of the movie, and I’m guessing it was a Buck Knives Model 110.
We all remember the various “Rambo” movies; in each one, “John Rambo” is seen carrying various types of large knives. In the first several movies, he carries different hollow handle survival knives. Well, Buck Knives jumped on that bandwagon with their over version that they called the “Buckmaster”. To be sure, it was probably one of the heaviest and stoutest hollow handle survival knives on the market. It wasn’t some cheap, plastic, hollow handle, piece of junk from China.
Many folks don’t know that the M9 Bayonet was marketed by Buck Knives, and it’s very popular with our men and women in uniform. Buck sold more than 300,000 of these stout bayonets, too. Now, they are copied by many companies, though most are pure junk!
In 2005 Buck Knives moved from San Diego, CA to Post Falls, Idaho, and I did a feature story on the move and the new company for Knives Illustrated magazine. Buck lost some employees in the move, and that is understandable, as it’s hard to uproot a family and make that kind of a move.
One thing you will notice about Buck Knives is that they don’t release a lot of new knife designs each year, like many other knife companies do. It’s for good reason; they have some rock-solid designs that keep selling year-after-year. You don’t “fix” what’s not broken, and that brings us to the Buck Model 245 MWG fixed blade knife.
The Buck Model 245 MWG is being produced by Buck Knives in honor of Special Warfare Operator, First Class, SEAL Matthew J. Leathers, who was a highly decorated combat veteran, including the Bronze Star. Leathers was lost at sea in an open water ocean training exercise.
Leathers designed a small fixed blade knife that he made by hand from coil springs from beat up Hummers, and he found a way to temper the steel blades using an old mailbox. His small fixed blade knife was always in demand from other SEALs, too. Needless to say, it was no small task producing the knives, by hand, one at a time, but Leathers did his best to meet demand. Buck Knives entered into an agreement with Tim Leathers, Matt’s father, to produce the Model 245 MWG, and Buck is more than honored to offer this knife to the public. Also, a portion of the sale of each knife goes to the Navy SEAL Foundation.
So, a little more history on the Buck Model 245 MWG is in order. The Model number comes from Matt’s SEAL Team BUDs class he graduated from– Class 245. (This is always a great way to catch phonies who claim they were Navy SEALs: Ask them what SEAL class they graduated from. Most will tell you they were with SEAL Team 6, which is one of the best known. So, that will readily tell you that they aren’t the real deal. They have no idea what you asked them, when asked what “class” number they were in.)
The “MWG” in the model of the knife refers to “Matt Would Go”. That comes from Matt’s courage and devotion to duty. When the chips were down, the team knew they could always count on Leather, because no matter the job “Matt Would Go.” The term was coined by the leadership of the SEAL Delivery Team One Delivery Vehicle in recognition of Matt’s courage.
I’ve spent a lot of time on the history of Buck Knives, and I touched on how the Model 245 MWG model came about. I believe this is important, and I’ll do some more in-depth research and testing on products in the future for SurvivalBlog. I believe many readers want to know the “skinny” on some products, the company, and the folks who developed certain products.
A close look at the Buck Model 245 MWG is certainly in order. In 1993, Buck Knives started using 420HC steel for their blades, and they also changed the grind on their knives, so they were easier to re-sharpen. If it’s one thing they were known for, it was super-sharp knives that held an edge forever, or so it seemed, but the knife blades were very hard to re-sharpen by many consumers. So, Buck left 425M stainless steel and went to 420HC with the new grind. Well, the 245 MWG is made out of 5160 steel and has a black powder coating on the blade to resist rust. The blade is clip point, and the handle material is made out of multi-colored Micarta, which is some tough stuff, to be sure. The blade is right at 4″ long, and it was sharp. While sitting on my desk, I happened to bump the pinky finger on my left hand against the blade, thinking nothing of it, until a minute later when my wife asked why my hand was all bloody. I didn’t realize I was cut, because the blade was so sharp. A hazard of testing knives is sometimes getting cut. It’s been more than a dozen years since I last cut myself testing a knife; that time resulting in a visit to the ER.
We have a lanyard hole on the butt of the 245 MWG but no lanyard. I hope Buck sees the error of their ways and includes a lanyard in the future. If not, it’s no big deal to attach some 550 para cord for your own lanyard. The butt is also somewhat pointed, to be used as a striking weapon; it makes someone stop and think if you happen to hit them along a nerve and paralyze an arm or hand. We also have a very nice Kydex sheath, molded expertly to the 245 MWG. It’s the best molding I’ve seen on any knife with a Kydex sheath, and it has a Tec-Lok that can be attached several different ways for vertical or horizontal carry on the belt or a tactical MOLLE vest.
I used the Model 245 MWG all around my homestead for a week, including in the kitchen and opening UPS/FedEx packages. I stabbed it into stacked cardboard, up to the handle; I had no problem. I chopped some dormant blackberry vines, and it make quick work of them. The handle design is expertly designed with finger grooves placed just where your fingers fall on the handle as you grasp it. Needless to say, I never once had to stop and re-sharpen the knife, and I put it to work… a lot! We also have some “friction” grooves strategically placed on the blade and the handle, too. There isn’t a single thing I would change on the 245 MWG; it’s “that” good!
Buck Knives doesn’t have this knife on their website just yet, but here is a link to the knife with a picture of it…
Quality NEVER comes cheap, and you only have to buy quality once. The 245 MWG retails for $245.00, and I’m predicting it will be a very hot seller for Buck Knives. It is a real tribute to a fallen SEAL hero, and don’t forget, a portion of the proceeds go to a good cause. So, if you’re in the market for a totally outstanding fixed blade knife for survival, camp chores, everyday chores, or to add to your collection, take a close look at the new Buck Knives Model 245 MWG!
Remember, you read about it first on SurvivalBlog!
Pat Cascio, SurvivalBlog Product Review Editor Emeritus