We recently got our hands on the new (and now award-winning) CRKT Homefront that was designed by legendary knife-maker, Ken Onion. It has what CRKT is calling “Field Strip Technology” – a patent-pending process that allows the user to quickly and easily break down the Homefront into three simple pieces for cleaning in the field, without the need for tools. To say that the Homefront is unique is an understatement. It’s different from most of the EDC knives on the market right now, and CRKT promises that this is just the “first in [CRKT’s] fleet to feature Field Strip technology.” We think that’s a great thing.
The CRKT Homefront has the look and feel of a vintage military knife. CRKT says, “It might look like your grandpa’s classic WWI folder, but it’s got an impressive secret.” At the Blade Show in Atlanta, Ken Onion told us that it has that WWI Jeep feel to it, and we’d have to agree with both CRKT and Ken Onion. The Homefront just has that classic military feel to it. From the OD Green anodized 6061 handle scales to the lug-style bayonet flipper, and from the tank jimping on the backstrap to the blood-grooved drop point blade, this knife screams old school on the outside, but the technology on the inside – well, that’s pure magic.
For a knife that comes apart easily into three pieces without tools, the action on this knife is smooth as silk. As you can see in the video, all it takes is a pull on the flipper and a slight flick of the wrist, and the Homefront is open and locked into place – and it doesn’t matter how many times you break it down and rebuild it. The action is still sweet and true every time. It’s almost unbelievable.
Open Overall Length: 8.313 inches
Closed Length: 4.728 inches
Weight: 4.8 ounces
Length: 3.502 inches
Thickness: 0.133 inches
Material: AUS 8
Finish: Brushed Steel
Material: 6061 Aluminum
Type: Locking Liner
Field Strip Technology (Patent Pending)
CRKT Field Strip Tech is Easy
Breaking the knife down and rebuilding it is quick and easy. To disassemble the Homefront, close the knife, push the front release lever away from the blade, and then spin the turn release wheel on the rear of the handle away from the pivot shaft. You’ll feel the handle release. Just pull it up and away from the blade, and you’ll be able to separate the three parts. To reassemble the Homefront, you simply reverse the process, making sure that you align each of the three parts in the closed position.
We were stunned at just how easily the turn release wheel grabs onto the female opening and pulls the Homefront together. And, we found that if you apply a little pressure to the front end of the handle, it’s much easier to switch the release lever back into place for use. Here’s another video of the process that was made by CRKT.
That’s neat, but does it work?
Yes, it works. It actually works incredibly well – as good as any top brand, modern EDC flipper. As you can see in our video, the AUS 8 steel blade was nice and sharp right out of the box. It went through double-thick corrugated cardboard like it was cutting a sheet of paper, and it feathered/whittled pressure treated lumber with minimal effort. The lock held nicely and when everything is properly tightened and switched to the right position, there was very little play in the blade.
What’s in the pipeline for Field Strip Technology from CRKT?
When Ken Onion was showing us his personal prototype of the Homefront at the Blade Show, he talked a bit about the future of Field Strip technology at CRKT and what might be coming down the pike.
“We’ll come out with new iterations,” Onion told us. “I’ve got the Pilot’s version of this gonna come out,” he says. “It’s like an old school dagger, but it’s gonna have the star and the textures… the herring bone, reverse chevron textures.” It will not have the same handle shape, Onion says, “It’s got a double guard on it. Kind of an old school blade – more like a pilot’s knife.” Onion says they’ve been working on a name, and right now it’s called, “Zeppelin – like an old WWI Zeppelin.”
We love the CRKT Homefront, and if the Zeppelin (or whatever they end up calling the upcoming pilot’s knife version) is as good as the Homefront, we can’t wait to see it.
The CRKT Homefront is due out this Fall and now available for pre-order through smkw.com for $119.99. You can click the image or button below to place your pre-order.