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Busse Steel Heart II
Combat Knife Review

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Story - It's been a while since I got the first Steel Heart II. During this time things have changed a bit :) Fortunately the changes are all on the good side ;) That is, I have more than one Steel Heart II including some variation, so one can follow up the Steel Heart evolution. So, in the beginning (not quite the beginning), but anyways, there was a Steel Heart II, which later changed a little bit, and while changed still was a Steel Heart II, and in year 2000 it became Steel Heart E :) And somewhere in between this Steel Heart Variant was produced. And probably you may want to see all of the Steel Heart Brothers together.
    What's really interesting about this knife is that it took me over a year to get bits and pieces of information about it. In the end it turned out a lot more special than it seemed from the beginning. Which is always a good thing.
    It all started when I bought a used SH2 from Pete's Tactical Knives I was not sure if it was INFI or not. The information was controversial, Pete himself got this knife as A2, then one of the Busse dealers made a correction that it was INFI. Then I bought it and now I got another correction that it might've been A2, etc. Finally I've decided talk to the creator, that would be - Jerry Busse himself. Jerry was kind enough to spend time with me on the phone, trying to ID the knife by my description, but eventually he told me that according to the description it could've been A2 or INFI, only chemical analysis would give the correct answer. Well, it was worth it and I was thinking of sending the blade to Jerry anyway, for refurbishing, as it had some minor scratches. Busse Knife shop performed chemical analysis of the steel, and confirmed the INFI result :) In addition I got new crinkle finish, and the handles have been modified, the old screws were replaces with the modern tubes - click here to see the pic :). I would like to express my sincere gratitude to Busse Knife Co. for their great knives and excellent customer service.
    That was not the end of the story as it turned out in 06/2002 :) While playing with this SH2 and BMLSB I've noticed that SH2 felt if not heavier then the same weight as 9 inch blade. Closer examination showed that SH2 was thicker then BMLSB, which I knew was 1/4" thick. I was rather puzzled, and I've pulled the rest of my SHs from the box and proceeded with measurements. The result was exciting ;) This particular SH2 is 5/16 thick! Which makes it very rare SH2 in existence. According to Busse Combat very few have been made. I am not really concerned about it's collector's value, because it's not for sale, but as a user knife I do like it a lot and prefer over other SHs definitely. For the reference, it can be seen on the pitcure as well, 5/16 SH2 is slightly longer than the rest of them.

General

 - Second generation Steel Heart knife from Busse combat Line, now discontinued in favor of newer Steel Heart E. Visually, this knife looks more appealing to me than the new one :) Though the SH E can perform better, because fo the new handle. On the other hand, SH2 has slightly longer blade and it's thicker, 5/16" instead of 1/4" For some reason 5/16" thick SH is more appealing to me than the standard one. In short, I like this knife a lot ;) It's been my primary heavy duty use knife for a while, and it's gonna stay in my user knife list for a long time ;)
    In general, Busse Combat Knives are hard to get. Even current, production models. Now imagine what it'd be to get the discontinued model. Obviously enough, the prices on the discontinued models are almost or more than doubled as usual. Considering Busse Combat Knives policy, not to bring any discontinued model back to production ever, the prices are very unlikely to go down ever.

Blade

 - This is the second largest blade in the old Busse Combat Line. Blade length is 7.5, though because of the court ruling the blades are measured differently on the new and older blades, this translates into slightly longer blade in the SH II vs. SH E. For comparison click here to see both Steel Hearts. Also, as I've noted above, 5/16 SH has longer blade even compared to its standard models. As you can see overall length is virtually the same, having a shorter blade SH E has longer handle. Blade geometry is practically the same, though SH II has a wider blade. IMHO this is an exceptionally well made knife. Truly, do it all blade :) Kind of historical piece now. It can handle very well a vast majority of the knife tasks an average knife user encounters. For 7.5 inch blade SH performs very well, though 5/16" thick blade may not be the best fit for particular tasks, such as cutting cardboard, but in general, on the camp trip or while hiking I think it's more than enough. Currently, since I got the other NIB SH II blades, the Older SH II moved into the Beater Knives category :) Though considering Busse Combat Knives Nuclear toughness, it'll be a challenge to really beat it in use. Well, Ok, you can destroy any knife provided the desire for it, but even then it's quite hard :) As of the knife and many non knife uses, 5/16" or even 1/4" thick INFI blade is rather indestructible.
    The blade material is famous Busse INFI steel. I've already put some info regarding this steel in other my reviews of Busse knives and you can find a lot more on Bladeforums. In short the steel is very tough and holds the edge very well. I myself had a few chances to be convinced in that. Busse's semi-convex edge grind improves the edge strength. Sharpening the asymmetrical edge is different that a standard V grind, but not difficult at all. For more information about sharpening Busse semi-convex knives on the bladeforums.com. Just do the search & you'll get all the information you need.

Specifications:

  • Model - Steel Heart II;
  • Blade - 177.80mm(7")
  • Thickness - 7.93mm
  • OAL - 342.90mm(13.5")
  • Steel - INFI steel at 58-60HRC
  • Handle - Micarta
  • Acquired - 10/2000 Price - 300.00$
  • Warranty - Unconditional Lifetime;

Last updated - 09/01/11