Nothing about the Mantis MK-2 is traditional except the unconditional lifetime warranty. Now listed in Mantis’s product directory as the Cinq II, the style of this knife brings to mind the “hook and pull” technology of Ka-Bar’s TDI series, but with the engineering of a pocket folder.
The stainless steel black epoxy construction is functional rather than pretty. Mantis says these knives are useful as box cutters, skinning knives, and utility tools, but the look of them says self defense. A 2 1/4″ blade is a little small for that except in special circumstances.
The blade opens from a one handed grip and locks securely in open position, and a black steel pocket clip keeps the knife in easy reach. The blade keeps some of the shape and angular beveling of a short tanto, but the pistol grip handle and the curved “beak” design don’t contribute well to the penetrating quality of that Japanese knife style. The large finger ring at the base of the handle is also a little reminiscent of some old Japanese weapon designs, but will probably not have much practical use.
This is definitely an interesting knife, with features far enough from the norm that it will take some getting used to.
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