I acquired a Buck Knives Alpha Crosslock approximately one month ago. I wanted a small, lightweight multitool for use in backpacking and day-to-day activities. I wanted many of the features that come in larger multitools, but in a slimmer, more compact model. There are several other Knives on the market, but many of them sacrifice the pliers and offer other very specialized tools which I have no use for.
AVAILABLE FEATURES AND OPTIONS
Buck knives are arguably the famous USA-made knives, known & respected worldwide for their high quality, for blades that hold an edge, & for the Lifetime Guarantee that backs them up.
Has a thumb stud, blade hole or another characteristic to facilitate one-hand use. Some types are one-hand opening and one-hand closing as well.
This is Buck’s standard blade substance because it approaches the wear protection of high carbon alloys while delivering the corrosion resistance of chromium stainless steels. Add our exclusive heat-treat process, and you have a very user-friendly blend of superior corrosion resistance with excellent strength for wear resistance and durability. You also have a blade that is easy to resharpen. For best performance, we harden to a Rockwell hardness of Rc 58.
For excellent performance when field dressing game, a gut or skinning hook is an ideal tool. We’ve paid careful attention to the angles on the sharpened edge, shape, and size of the entry opening and location of the hook on the blade, making a Buck gut hook the best.
Serrations give your Buck blade greater cutting power. Especially helpful when cutting line & cables.
My first impressions
The Buck Knives Alpha Crosslock is a great looking knife with a unique design. The handle rotates smoothly; the lock is easy to use but doesn’t get depressed accidentally as it is flush with the handle. There are a series of four small notches on the back of the blade where my thumb rests when using it, almost like a fish scaler on a Swiss Army knife. The finish (mine is blue) has a brushed aluminum look with rich color and a white Whittaker logo near one end. The clip seems sturdy enough with good tension. I wondered how the tension would hold up; it is a U shaped piece of steel.
Blade & Features
The Buck Knives Alpha Crosslock isn’t merely one knife; it is two knives in one handy, compact package. Tucked away inside its stylish, lightweight hard-anodized aluminum handle are a straight-edge blade & a deeply serrated blade. The straight-edge blade will be useful in whatever routine cutting tasks you may need on your camping or backpacking tour. From filleting fish to cutting, this fine, stainless steel blade will retain every slice clean & effortless.
The blade is made of 420HC high carbon, high chromium stainless steel. The blade is laser cut from a sheet of steel and for the most part made by hand. According to Buck Knives, this is a strong, corrosion resistant blade with excellent initial sharpness, good edge holding and resharpens well. The blade comes to a nice point, but not too narrow of a point that might make it susceptible to breaking. The blade condition was very sharp, and the serrations looked suitable for heavy-duty use.
The second blade features deep serrations which will be helpful in cutting through wood & can even help break down your latest hunting or fishing catch. A gut hook has been added to the tip of the serrated blade, showing just how much Buck Knives was considering the average fisherman & hunter when they designed this knife.
Both blades are crafted of stainless steel with a special carbon content which means they will hold their sharp edges for much longer than many low-carbon competitors. High carbon stainless steel is slightly less rust resistant than low carbon stainless steel, but that’s hardly a trade-off when you consider two things: a knife that stays sharp for a long time does not require you to carry a sharpener, & this knife is easy to store in dry places.
When the blade is open the clip is protected from damage by fitting into a recess in the edge of the handle. When the knife is open half of the blade is closed into the handle. If the lock were to fail my hand would help keep the blade from closing accidentally. The blade locks closed as well as open, a great safety feature. The clip is designed to attach the knife to a pack, a belt loop or other similar things, and works well. I often attach it to a belt loop on my jeans. It is easy to snap it on without having to see it, and if I don’t want it flapping around, I slide the end in my pocket. It is just as easy to remove it. Note, the belt loop on my jeans shows some signs of wear over time from hanging the knife there. The clip spring has held up fine so far and works like new.
The Alpha Crosslock, while maybe not ultra-light, is fairly light and appears to be built very well. The blade is high quality and so far has maintained a good sharp edge. I have not needed to sharpen it since buying it. I do not have much use for the other side, but having it does save a small amount of weight from the blade. It is held together with two different sizes of Torx screws, two small ones at one end and one larger one where the knife hinges. I believe I could take it apart to clean it if I needed to, I have not done this. No tool is included with the knife for these, and I do not have one of the correct sizes. I do not know if the ease of opening the knife can be adjusted with the screw.
There are a couple of things to make a note of if you are considering this knife. The knife can be opened with one hand if needed, but it is not easy and not very safe to do this. Second, it is not an easy knife to open when wearing gloves unless they are fairly lightweight. If I were to attach it to my pack in the winter and were to use it without gloves, it would be pretty cold. It will carry well in pants pockets as it is almost 3 in long. One last thing to note is that a left-handed user may find opening it a little awkward as the lock button is only on one side of the knife.
Speaking of how simple it is to store, I assume we should take a moment to consider this knife’s weight & size specifications. Weighing in at a minor 4 ounces, this knife will not hold down the backpack or pocket. In fact, you will hardly mark it is there. Just imagine, how heavy would a regular knife & a saw be to carry together? Additionally, where would you store those?
The Alpha Crosslock compacts both of those tools into one & allows you to fold them inside of a strong, stylishly designed, anodized aluminum handle which lets you slip this knife into your pocket or backpack without worrying that it could damage something or hurt you.
I have carried this knife for semi-daily use as well as while camping. I have used it for things like opening packages, cutting rope, making tinder and cutting food such as apples. It has served me well, and I expect many years of use out of this knife.