I keep a Benchmade Bugout in my knife collection. It does not see a lot of use. It exists as a comparison piece to my other knives; for size, grip, and cutting quality. I'd have sold the knife long ago because the Bugout did not live up to the holy grail status that so many seem to bestow upon it. I kept it around so that I could be reminded of how unimpressed I was with the Bugout, in the event I found myself itching for any other shiny new stuff from Benchmade. So today, I had it out to compare with my Salt 2 "Delica," PE LC200N. I noticed the usual gritty action on the Bugout (I've cleaned and tuned it before with no improvement). I flipped it a couple times while on a phone call to try to smooth it out, and the next thing I notice is the omega springs break, both at the same time. I've never had an Axis Lock failure until today, and let me tell you the Bugout looked especially sad as it limped lifeless, dangling from my hand. I thought more about Axis Locks and the vulnerability of an omega spring. It is a small piece of metal. And I would think in a climate controlled environment it would probably outlast hundreds of thousands of compressions. But our knives don't have the luxury of living in perfect conditions, and so that tiny piece of wire would be very vulnerable to corrosion or other minor imperfections. I then thought of how disastrous that could be if the failure happened during an emergency, in my line of work emergencies happen all the time. After hearing about omega spring failures and then experiencing one directly; I can confidently say that I'm no longer going to consider any other Axis Lock knives from Benchmade. Benchmade pricing made it all the easier to walk away as well. On a side note, I used to covet the compression lock above all others, but lately I've been drifting back to appreciate the back lock. Not because of any reliability or durability issues, but because I appreciate the extra security the back lock provides with the bias to keep the knife shut. Not a huge issue, but one that becomes more important as my facination in flickability wanes.
“I get on my bike and I ride off…on the grass.”