Vulture Equipment Works, gear designer and manufacturer for adventurous photography professionals, has come out with a new lineup of premium survival knives (and a tactical knife too!).
Introducing the Cholera Mk1 survival knife. Why is it named after a nasty disease that kills by causing severe dysentery and vomiting?
The Cholera was named from the disease that can live in the belly of a Vulture! A nasty and difficult aliment to overcome seemed like a perfect name for a blade profile that has been in refinement over William’s career in the field and is hard to beat. [Read More]
When I first received the knife and opened the box I was impressed by the hefty feel of the knife. The lightly textured Mikarta grip felt comfortable in my hand and it looks great too. Vulture crafts their knives in the U.S., so you can feel good about supporting American business.
The blade itself is a modified Gyuto design which you can see in the knife point, although the cutting edge of the Cholera rises to the tip more than a traditional Gyuto. Also, unlike traditional Japanese design which is often single ground, the Cholera’s knife edge is double beveled like a traditional survival or outdoor knife.
The Cholera’s full-tang blade is made of heat treated 1095 high carbon steel and is laser etched with the Vulture Equipment Works logo, the model name, and the name of the designer – William Egbert Jr. Vulture also used an acid wash and applied a clear Cerakote finish.
One feature that sticks out like a sore thumb is the inexplicable hole drilled into the knife blade near the handle. I couldn’t find anything that described what it was for. It’s not something that’s typically found in a survival knife.
How’s it work in the field?
I took the Mk1 on my hike up Mount St Helens. While I didn’t use it during the climb, I did put it to use in camp batoning wood for kindling. It worked well and I didn’t have any problems. Just be sure to avoid striking the inch or so of the blade because it has a false edge.
I played around with whittling some wood and it works great for the bulk work. You’ll want to switch knives for detailed work because the false edge along the tip of the spine makes controlling the point a risky proposition for your thumb. With that said, Tim MacWelch at Outdoor Life found it acceptable for his small wood carving work. For tasks that require a piercing thrust, like skinning or gutting, the false edge is helpful.
Since it’s high carbon steel you’ll need to show it more TLC than other types of steel, because it’s more prone to rusting. Maintenance is pretty simple though. Just wipe it down when it gets wet and be sure to oil it on occasion.
Cholera Mk1 Specs
- High Carbon 1095 Steel
- Blade Length: 5.5 inches
- Overall Length: 10 inches
- Blade Thickness: 0.1875 inches (3/16ths)
- Knife Weight: 9.5 ounces
- Total Weight: 13 ounces (knife, sheath, fire starter)
- Made in USA
- Price: $190
In The Box
- Cholera Knife
- Kydex Formed Sheath
- Magnesium Starter & Sparker
- Red 550 Cord
- Numbered Certificate
- Care Sheet & Vulture Head Sticker
Overall, I’ve been very pleased with the knife. It will replace my old survival knife and become a valuable part of my 10 essentials.
Note: The Cholera Mk1 was provided by Vulture Equipment Works at no cost but, as always, all opinions are my own.