Busse Satin Jack TAC edition was pretty much a blind buy for me. I've had four different Satin Jacks before that and I liked them all. Very nice design and a user knife too. At that time I've had several knvies on order with Busse Combat, some were delayed, others were cancelled, then I've changed mind of couple of those, to the list was evolving. Finally I've called the company and after 2 or 3 conversations with Jerry and crew we made a new list. That list included SJTAC, i.e. Satin Jack, with TAC handle and 5/16" LE Fusion Steel Heart knife #7. I got few other things in the package as well. Overall, the shipment was pretty quick and I've had all the knives, including combat grade Satin Jack TAC, in my possession within a week. That closed a rather long gap in my Busse buying sequence, which lasted around a year and a half, if I am not mistaken.
General- Well, generally speaking this is an evolution of the venerable Busse Satin Jack series. New Satin Jacks from the Busse Fusion Knives series appeared in 2005, if I am not mistaken. As usual there was a limited edition(SJTAC LE) run, combat grade(SJTAC CG) and then the variants. So, I got it based on the past Satin Jack experiences, my curiosity and it was a new Busse after all. The knife arrived in a standard Busse package, box and the wrapped knife in it. Out of the box inspection revealed brand spanking new knife, with no visible damages or defects. Fit and finish were good, just like other Busse knives I've had in the past. Overall, I did like how the knife looked and felt in the hand. Very solid piece of cutlery, but then again, that's how Jerry makes them all. In short, it is a medium size fixed blade, you can call it combat or survival or utility knife if you will. It can handle majority of the cutting and heavy duty cutting without any problems. Chopping to certain degree is also very possible and prying will be no big deal either. Just watch for the edge, if you do heavy prying though, it is thinner ;)
Blade- Blade on the Satin Jack TAC edition was the same 6" as on the other Satin Jacks before that. However, blade geometry has changed. I think the change was considerable, given that the new knife was still the Satin Jack model. You might think otherwise, so here is the photo of five Satin Jacks and you can judge the extent of the change yourself. In my opinion, the older version was more elegant. I am having hard time judging the usability of the new geometry vs. old geometry, none was preventing me from doing anything I wanted to do, and I couldn't really tell if there was any significant difference in the work I was doing because of the changed blade geometry. A wider blade does have its advantages though. As for the steel, and you already know that, it is made from the Busse proprietary INFI steel. And for the reference here is the INFI steel composition as well. The blade was sharpened at Busse recommended 40° total angle, which gives 20° per side. That's thick enough to suffice for all the heavy duty works you might throw at that knife. Although, personally I think if you are up to it, thinner edge might do just as well, or even better. Double bevel edge let's say 40°/30° will greatly improve its cutting ability, without compromising edge strength in any meaningful way.
Handle- Fusion line knives have different style handles in general, and TAC editions are different from that too. Even though originally, Satin Jack series had their own unique style handle, different from the ergo type handles used on all other Busse knives at that time, Fusion line introduced new style handles, and along with the changes in blade geometry, the new style handle appeared on the Satin Jack too. I personally think it was ok handle, but out there, the reception was mixed. Some swore by it, and others swore at it. If it comes to comparison, yes I did prefer the original Satin Jack handle. Although, I have nothing against SJTAC handle either. The bump on the spine did feel different on my palm, and that is the main reason I preferred older SJ handles. Other than that, notable features of the SJTAC handle include rather colorful, but not distasteful Snakeskin Micarta handle slabs, and the usual skull crusher thingy at the end. I never had to crush any skulls with any of my Busse knives, but occasionally those are handy to hammer small stuff, or even punch a hole in a sheath of metal or a tin can.
Conclusions- Because I have few hundred knives at any given time, it was pretty hard to intensively used SJTAC for prolonged time. I ended up owning two of those anyway. Later on both were traded to other Busse collectors. Like I said, I still preferred the old one, because of the blade geometry and the handle. So, those guys like SJTAC more than I did :) I got other Busse knives in those trades, including Busse FFFFBM and a Tuxedo Game Warden. Overall, it is a really good knife, made from a very goof INFI steel, and Busse proprietary heat treatment is also top notch. Given all that, the knife performs superbly for medium/heavy cutting and all around use. If you want an optimized slicer, this is not the knife, but for one knife do it all role, when hard use is often the possibility, SJTAC is a good choice, especially when you do not want to go too big and heavy.
- Model - Satin Jack TAC;
- Blade - 150.00mm(5.91")
- Thickness - 6.35mm
- OAL - 285.00mm(11.22")
- Steel - INFI steel at 58-60HRC
- Handle - Snakeskin Micarta
- Acquired - 03/2006 Price - 247.00$
- Warranty - Unconditional Lifetime;
Last updated - 09/01/11