I was looking for a versatile Everyday Carry fixed blade knife, and I stumbled upon the SOG Seal Pup knife with the Kydex sheath. There were several requirements that had to be met for me to be satisfied. First, I wanted something with a partially serrated edge and a blade length that didn’t exceed 5 inches. It had to be relatively immune to the elements, my sweat, with a tendency to resist rust. I also wanted something that could be used as a utilitarian knife; able to perform a wide variety of tasks while still holding its own as a self-defense, fighting knife. In addition, I have big hands so I needed something that was comfortable to hold, and would be big enough to accomplish most medium-duty tasks for survival. After spending more than two weeks looking at different knife models, I realized that fulfilling these requirements would be more difficult than I thought . In addition, I didn’t want to spend more than $100 for both knife and sheath which further narrowed my choices. Luckily, SOG Knives were there to the rescue
Ask Someone With Real-world Experience
I figured the best place to start my research was to first check out some recommendations and reviews, from former and current military veterans, who have tried, tested, and proven, the effectiveness of their favorite, chosen fixed blades. The reviews ranged across the spectrum. Some were too big. Some were straight-edged. Some were prohibitively expensive, and some were just too conspicuous and would draw too much attention. The one factor that stood out, was that most of these knives weren’t effective for civilian Everyday carry. For military members, the knife, a necessary and mandatory tool, was used more disposably, and could, and would, get beat up and abused, while being used for tasks that typically would damage most knives.
Not the first choice of veterans
In the end, I settled for a knife that was not really recommended all that much by veterans, but touted as the chosen knife of the Navy Seals by the company, SOG. I did some research but found that the knife wasn’t actually the official knife of the Navy Seals but it had been used and recommended by some veterans, but more by outdoor survivalists and proponents of Everyday Carry. I ended up purchasing based on my own research and here are my findings.
Initial Features of the knife
I received the knife in the mail a few days later and opened the box. The knife had a thin film of oil on the blade to protect it while shipping and warehousing, and was razor sharp, in pristine condition. The blade was thicker than I expected and had a matte black coating that resisted reflecting light, which I liked. The entire knife was also heavier than I expected with a nice thick blade that I found, could handle medium-duty tasks such as wood battening and minor bush craft activities.
Uses for the SOG Seal Pup
The partially rounded edge leading to the tip enabled me to also handle detailed wood working tasks such as carving, and animal processing tasks, such as skinning. Coupled with the notched rasp that added ridges on the back of the blade, I could choke up on the knife with my thumb, for more detailed tasks. The Bowie style tip was strong enough to poke and dig holes in wood and leather, and the knife was balanced enough to throw into wood rather effectively, once I practiced a few times.
Great for a variety of tasks
The high carbon content of the blade made it easy to produce sparks for fire, when used in coalition with a Ferro Rod. The partially serrated blade made tasks such as cutting rope and wire easy, and becomes a very convenient feature for less precise cutting tasks that are more suited to a serrated edge, such as cutting rope or lashing. Having this combination, makes the blade that much more versatile.
Handling the blade
The grip of the blade is rubberized injection molded glass reinforced nylon, making it easy to hold, even when wet or with gloves. The only downside to the grip is that it was too small for my hands (XXL Gloves) and when I tried to perform some chopping tasks, it seemed to wear into the skin on my hand and cause callouses and hotspots.
The sheath is one of the best features of this knife. When placing the knife into the sheath, it snapped into place with an audible click. When turned upside down, the knife did not fall out or seem like it would under more rigorous shaking. To protect against this, the sheath also includes a retaining strap with a snap button that is easily disconnected using a thumb or forefinger, for easy release of the knife from the sheath.
The sheath is attached to the body with an adjustable size belt loop made of nylon. It can be adjusted to accommodate different size belts. The down side to this is that the sheath can only be worn vertically on the belt and hangs low instead of having the ability to ride high like some knives. The nylon belt loop strap can be removed using the included screws and could theoretically be replaced with another type of belt or waistband retention, but I have not tried this yet. It would be interesting having the option of carrying this knife in the horizontal position or even the downward vertical position, attached to a tactical vest. The sheath does have holes running the length of the sheath which could potentially give you other options for carry.
Overall this is a very nice knife, especially for the price. It has a lot of well-rounded features and can handle a variety of tasks. It is kind of like a jack of all trades but master of none. It can be used for Everyday Carry but it is a little heavy and the sheath isn’t really something that can be worn with regular clothing in an urban environment. A customized sheath would probably make this possible or perhaps a different carry option than the included belt loops. It can be used for camping but if I had a choice, I would prefer a blade used specifically for that purpose. It works well in the elements and is durable to say the least. For the price, I would not be afraid to use it for heavy-duty tasks and especially for self-defense, it could easily serve that purpose as well.
For myself, it is a little small for my hands and thus would probably not be my first choice of knife for Everyday carry but I would not hesitate to take it with me hiking, or traveling. It is a perfect size for my fiancé and I’m going to include it in her get home bag for emergencies. I’m going to try out the SOG Seal Elite full sized knife for myself.