Schrade SCHF22 One-Piece Drop Forged Boot Knife Tanto Fixed Blade – @Jdstidham40
Schrade wasn’t mincing words when they added the name of this knife to their website. The title says it all, sort of. I discovered the SCHF22 boot knife while looking through the 2014 Schrade catalog. I came across one of the meanest looking little blades in the book and saw there were 2 variants of the design. I fell in love with the look of the SCHF21 immediately and said “I suppose I will look at the 22 as well.” Boy am I glad I did. As sometimes happens, I didn’t see the brilliance at first.
It turns out the SCHF22 that I almost overlooked was not just a great blade but the better choice all around. First the construction, the SCHF22 is very similar in construction to the SCHF1 which we reviewed and found to be very impressive. Like it’s bigger brother, the SCHF22 is one-piece drop forged from SEA-1070 high carbon steel. The high carbon steel chosen is an excellent spring steel that will provide a great edge and hold it well without the worry of chipping and breakage that comes with stainless. This does mean the exposed steel should be maintained with a little oil periodically. The remainder of the knife is covered in a titanium corrosion resistant coating that seems to hold up better that the standard coatings to prolonged direct skin contact. The SCHF22 retains the hollow waterproof handle compartment for storage and weight reduction and loses nothing in the strength department. The end cap for the handle now sports a taper with a glass breaker tip which is ideal for hand to hand combat purposes. The tip gives the user an excellent ridge-hand striking point to be used with a reversed combat hold.
The blade design on the SCHF22 has a very thick spine (.20″) for it’s size with a very narrow blade width(.63″), keeping the knife both strong and compact. With the 4.5″ blade length the SCHF22 is more akin to the dimensions of a letter opener than a boot knife, but this would indeed be one lethal letter opener. The shape and sizing are quite the asset in a boot knife. The thinner width allows more options in placement than a wider blade would. Thin width of the blade is nearly optimal for sharpening given the thickness of the spine. If the blade were any thinner you would not be able to achieve the 20 degree sharpening angle you need to maintain a good edge. Also, the tanto design coupled with the thin profile lends itself to powerful penetration. The blade has a strength, shape and sharpness to delve deep. I would caution attempts at piercing hardened objects give the very small guard design. I could see a novice slipping past the guard and loosing a finger despite the excellent knurling on the grip face.
The SCHF22 comes with a glass filled nylon sheath with a steel clip and pass through “wings” for lashing with cordage. The clip is attached to the sheath with torx screws and removable inserts. I noted in my testing the position of the screw is laid out in a square meaning you could re-position the clip for horizontal or inverted wear if you so choose. The spring retention clip built into the sheath is made to hold the knife in an upright position and keep it from working itself out under normal wear. This retention clip DOES NOT retain the knife in a way that causes the user to disengage the clip before drawing. It provides tension and it not designed to securely hold the knife in any inverted or horizontal position. To place the knife in any such position is done at your own risk.
While testing, I decided to take that risk. After removing the belt/boot clip on the sheath I ran 550 cord through the existing screw holes and converted the SCHF22 to a neck knife. I wore this blade in direct contact with my skin, inverted for well over a week. No corrosion occurred. The retention clip securely held the knife in place with no slippage for the entire time. I will again state this is outside the design parameters of this knife. I do not promote this idea and doing such is at your own risk. Personally, I don’t wear boots anymore. For me the SCHF22 became my favorite neck knife in a short period of time. It provide me with a stronger blade than my usual EDC pocketknife and a covert carry option for a rather intimidating blade. If I didn’t carry a pair of pistols everywhere I go I might look at this a valid CCW for quick defense. I think with a very few design changes (slightly stronger retention, grip milled flat on the sides) the SCHF22 could find a new life as a leading neck knife in the industry.
The long and short, I’m a big fan.