By Jeanette Kozlowski
If you're looking for the cutting edge in knife developments, you may want to consider Blackhawk's revised CQD Mark 1 Type E knife. The award-winning tool has taken on a new and much more affordable form.
Last year the popular Mark 1 became unavailable due to manufacturing resource constraints. During that time, Blackhawk took a step back to re-evaluate the knife's design and parts. What they came up with was roughly the same design but with different materials at a lower cost.
"We put emphasis on it again because the knife sold well for us," Terry Naughton, Blackhawk's vice president of marketing said. "We had consumers say they'd 'love to have it,' and retailers wanted to carry it but wanted something that wasn't at the $300 or $400 price point."
The original Mark 1 and Mark 2 knife blades use 440C stainless steel and a handle crafted by a CNC machine, which is an expensive process. The updated Type E version contains an AUS8A stainless steel blade and an injection-molded reinforced nylon handle with 420J stainless steel liners.
By using different materials, Blackhawk was able to drastically decrease the price of the knife to $99.99 MSRP.
"It is more of something that every officer can afford now," Naughton explained.
While the materials are different, the functionality of the Mark 1 Type E remains the same. Designed by famed combat trainer Duane Dieter, the knife can easily be used one-handed—either in the left or right hand—as well as while wearing gloves. Built as a fighter for military forces, the knife also boasts features such as a recessed seatbelt/cord cutter and a carbide glass breaker. Available in both plain or partially serrated, the blade has a black PVD coating.
Even though the Mark 1 Type E is more affordable, Blackhawk still offers a version of the original Mark 1 for $249.99 MSRP.
"I think the only reason why someone would want a newer version of the original Mark 1 is as kind of a collectors' knife," Naughton said. "But you can get a replica in size and function of that at $99, and you don't have to worry about damaging the blade or the finish on your original knife."
The Blackhawl Mark 1 Knife is available through tactical.com.
Jeanette Kozlowski is a writer for Cat5 Commerce, a niche retail operator. She spends most days monitoring the wires for new and exciting public safety developments to share on Tactical Pants Blog, an information hub for the law enforcement and public safety industry.