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Benchmade 730 Ares
Axis Lock Folding Knife Review

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Benchmade 730 Ares

Yet another collaboration between Benchmade and custom knifemaker Allen Elishewitz. Benchmade first introduced the Ares in 2000. It was in New In 2000 section on Benchmade website. However, interestingly, or strangely the original version came out with two tone handle, which was purple and black. Although I've liked the blade a lot, because of the strange handle coloring I didn't buy it. Later, in Benchmade Knife Of The Month programm, different handle colors were introduced. Consequently in april and november black and green/black handled Ares came out, so I've got them both(since I liked them both:). It was quite disappointing that Benchmade wouldn't produce this knife in M2 steel.
    Well, good things do happen in this life :) In October 2001 Benchmade came out with special edition Ares CF HS. Carbon fiber handled, follow the link to 730CFHS Ares to see the pic and a review.
    In short, Ares is a well made, rather small (or medium, matter of opinion) sized, tactical folder. Movable clip, dual thumbstuds, handle ergonomics, blade geometry, smooth and strong axis lock, all this together makes a great knife. Once again, Allen and Benchmade did it :) For the record, in 2001 Allen left BM custom makers team, which is very frustrating. For a long time their collaboration was very successfull, giving us great knive like Nimravus, Dark Star, etc.

Blade

 - IMHO the blade geometry is just great :) I like spearpoint blades a lot. Strong point, yet plenty of belly for all the cutting applications of the knife this size. 3.6 " might be a little bit small for some, but most of the people find this length more than adequate for their cutting needs. By the way, Ares was the only blade from Benchmade that had a thin edge, which was quite unusual for them :) 154CM steel, made here in US by Crucible is one of the best stainless steels available on the market today. Sure, there are better steels, however for mass production knives, I doubt sometimes soon we'll see CPM420V or CPM10V, anyways, with a good heat treatment, 154CM is a good one. Blade finish on the Ares was standard for Benchmade, i.e. Satin and BT2 coated, plus partially serrated and plain edge for both finish types.

Handle

 - The Ares's ergonomic handle is quite comfortable, even when you need to apply significant force. Reader, familiar with Allen Elishewitz's works can easily recognize his unique style. I have no idea why Benchmade was producing Ares for quite long time only in dual tones. Only presently has Benchmade introduced 732 model, Ares with BT2 coated blade and the black handles.
    I've said enough about the Benchmade proprietary Axis Lock in other reviews, you can find some more info in my McHenry and Williams 710 and Osborne 940 reviews, plus check the Benchmade website for more information.

Specifications:

  • Model: Benchmade 730 Allen Elishewitz Ares
  • Blade: 154CM Steel 59-61 HRC;
  • Length: 91mm (3.60");
  • Thickness: 2.9mm (.114");
  • Open: 208.3mm (8.20") Closed: 119.4mm (4.70");
  • Weight: 124.74g (4.4oz);
  • Handle: G10, 410 stainless steel liners;
  • Lock Mechanism: Axis lock (U.S. Patent #5737841);
  • Warranty: Limited Lifetime;
  • Acquired - 07/2000 Price - 120.00$

Last updated - 09/01/11

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