Saturday, February 11, 2012

One ends and the next one begins...

This post has three purposes--first as an overview of the Custom Griptillian service offered by Benchmade, second to show off the cool giveaway item, and third to announce the outlines of the next contest.

I ordered Joseph Wain, the winner of the logo contest, a custom Mini Griptillian.  It is one of my favorite knives, an excellent buy, even in the stock version.  The custom service offers you the chance to pick quite a few options on the knife.  Here they are, with Joseph's choice in bold.

Knife (I chose this both because I like the smaller knife and there were some budget constraints):
Mini Grip

Blade Shape:
Drop Point in FFG
Tanto in FFG
Sheepsfoot in a Hollow Grind

Thumb Stud (Drop Point or Tanto only)
Thumb Hole (Sheepsfoot only)

Handle Scales:
Dozen colors, Joseph chose orange

Blade Steel (no choice, I picked the blade steel because I really believe it is that much better):
154 CM

Black Oxide

Standard Clip
Standard Clip Black Oxide
Standard Clip Black Paint
Spilt Arrow Clip
Split Arrow Clip Black Oxide

Images can be applied and I dropped Joseph's sweet logo on to the knife.  I wanted it to swap out for one of the two logos already on the knife, but I had a sneaking suspicion that would not happen.  Its placement is fine, as it is.  I had to change the order because Joseph changed his mind and opted for the thumb hole (good idea) and Benchmade was great about it.  The call was easy, the process was seamless, and the shipping was lightning fast.  I cannot recommend the service enough.  I love all of the options.  I called them this past Monday.  The custom knife arrived yesterday.  I took it out, snapped some pictures and sent the knife to Joseph today.

Here is a close up of the one spec that really matters:


Here is a shot of the knife over all:


Here is a shot of the knife with the split arrow clip installed (I really like that clip over the standard clip):

And the money shot, Joseph's logo on his brand new knife:


Overall, I think Joseph chose perfectly.  This is one hell of an EDC knife, all of the great ergos of the original Mini Grip with a truly great blade steel.  I would dare say that this is the best version of the Mini Grip available, better even than the Ritter version, as I truly believe that the thumb hole is superior to a thumb stud.  And, for Joseph, the price is unbeatable--FREE.

This leads me to the third topic, the next giveaway.  The AdSense revenue is averaging around $30-40 a month, which is not bad.  I would like to build up $100 and use that to purchase some items for review, specifically a Kershaw Cryo and a EagleTac D25a (those will also be given away, in due time).  After that, I would like to store up the cash for something big: a McGizmo Haiku.  That would probably take until the end of 2012, but that would be a hell of a giveaway.  The rules would be simple: you would need to write a review using the 20 point scale for either a bag, a multitool, a knife or a light, and submit it.  The review would need to be something I have not previously reviewed.  I would also like the person to have owned and used the item for a while before the review.  All of the reviews will be published, provided they meet a certain level of detail and coherence.  I will pick the best article and that person will win the McGizmo.  The entry period would start around March or April.  The end would be whenever the AdSense revenue reaches $500 (the price of a McGizmo Haiku).  I will let you know for sure.   Again, the AdSense revenue is key.  My wife would scalp me if I gave away $500 of our money, but for some reason the AdSense revenue is okay. 

So be thinking about what you want to review.  All things equal--the cooler the product the higher I will rank the review.  A review of a Hinderer XM-18 will beat out a review of a Buck 110 all other things being equal.

Congratulations again to Joseph Wain.   


  1. Wow, I commend you for putting together these giveaways. Your generosity is really unprecedented; a Haiku as a prize is amazing. However, I must object to you automatically scoring the reviews of more expensive and rare gear higher than more common gear. This gives those with more money an unfair advantage over those without. The contest should be about the quality of the writing and reviewing, not who can score the most rare and costly gear out there. I would also argue that a review of a common popular knife can be much more useful to many more people than a review of a knife that very few of us will ever have a chance to own.

    1. Yeah I have to agree with Joe on that. Maybe create a rule where a product can only be reviewed once, thus preventing multiple reviews of the same item.

  2. That is a really good point. I will make sure to incorporate that into the official rules once they are finalized.

  3. That doesn't really make sense though. Just because one person does a bad review of an item that would make it so no one else could give it a shot? How does that add up?

  4. That is an awesome idea by Benchmade, but $120-140 is too much money for a Grip. It can be semi-customized, so I could see a $40-50 premium. The only real advantage is the great S30V, other than that, you can have a local shop customize yours. They are a very good User knife, but if you shop around, I picked a 555HG up on the big 'A' for $58.90 shipped! You can get them all day for $70-80 on the big 'E'. In this case though, I think that this was an awesome gift for the job Joe did! Tony, instead of a Haiku, how about one or two of the 40DD series during the year, they can really be customized to the winner's desires, just an idea....

    1. So think of it like this: the Ritter Mini Grip is $112 on Knifeworks. For an extra $20 you get a better method of opening, the thumbhole, any handle scale you want, and you can get the nice pocket clip, I think the price is okay. If you don't want the thumb hole than the Ritter grip is the way to go.

  5. Black clip, axis and liners would have absolutely SET THAT KNIFE OFF.

  6. Really nice prize, I love his choice of details for the mini grip.

    Tony I am really stoked about your upcoming contests. I have a couple nice knives coming in, and I'd be happy to submit a review of one for a shot at a McGizmo. I'm thinking of a special knife like a Spyderco Street Bowie or maybe a Benchmade Skirmish. I've always wanted to give your 20 point style of review a shot and would love to offer up something for your site. Needless to say I look forward to checking out the official rules once you put them together.

  7. I think Joseph's choices were stylish. Congrats to him and his excellent logo design.

    The upcoming contest sounds awesome. I agree with Joe et al. that a well-written and vivid review of a common item can be just as valuable as some obscure custom flashlight hawked in batches of five on CPF. (BTW I have to mention here that some of your readers think CPF's moderators are such loathsome bullies that we won't participate in that dysfunctional forum in any way; so no CPF sales threads for me.)

    Realistically, I'm never going to shell out for one of those funky small-batch Dark Sucks things no matter how much you praise it. On the other hand, I bought my Spyderco Dragonflies pretty much on the strength of this site and I love them to bits.

    Anyway, I hope you'll run some of the runner-up contest reviews on the site even if they don't score the awesome Haiku prize.

  8. *Some* of CPF's moderators. I want to be scrupulous here.

  9. Joseph got his prize today and he seems satisfied.

  10. Just wondering, should you limit the number of reviews to one per person? I've got quite a few I could do (And I could very well do all of them), but one review per person would make people be more careful as to what they reviewed and entered.

    Your scoring on the reviews, you should do a 20 point review on the entered reviews as a post! Also, will the scoring involve the writing, or the writing and photography? Bad photography will just make me skip everything else (Which is weird because sometimes my own photography is horrible!) altogether.

  11. wow its so cool!!i want this too!! gonna to share my designs i hope u like.!