The thick bolster makes this light skinner look heavy, but in the Buck Gen-5 Skinner Fixed Blade knife, Al Buck’s old ideas have been updated and streamlined. Josh Buck — the fifth generation of the Buck family to design fine hunting and skinning knives — included all the strength of a full tang skinner but pared back to meet today’s high standards. Total weight of the slab-handled knife is only 4.2 ounces, even with the traditional handle design. Some of the dropped weight came from the sheath, not the knife. The Buck Gen 5 Skinner comes with a black nylon sheath of functional, heavy-duty fabric.
Pinned slabs of charcoal black birchwood form the polished grip of the Gen-5, and the color makes a beautiful contrast against the nickel-silver bolster and bright 420HC stainless steel blade. The wide hollow grind has such a shallow angle that the blade’s strength is hardly affected. The Gen 5 offers the same sharpening ease you’d expect from a good hollow ground blade. The knife has a good balance, and the handle gives plenty of twisting leverage even though the bulk has been trimmed away. Edges have been rounded just enough to limit blisters during hard use. It’s a beautiful knife made for real work.
Several variations of Josh Buck’s new skinner are currently available, including a limited issue of 1000 with cocobola wood handle slabs and brass fittings. Inspired by the woodwork of fine guitars, the Buck Gen 5 Cocobola Guitar Skinner features a polished blade of 154CM stainless steel with abalone shell inlay concealing the handle rivets. For a look at this collector’s version of the Buck Gen-5 Skinner, click here.
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[phpbay]Buck Gen 5 Skinner charcoal, 2[/phpbay]