After using and owning knives from many manufacturers, it’s become harder for me to find one with the “wow” factor. It’s even more of a surprise when I find a knife that wows me that comes from a company known primarily for making great flashlights. This is just my way of telling you that I’m really impressed with the SureFire Delta.
I first saw the Delta back in October at a seminar held by XS Sights at Blackwater USA. Dick Williams, media relations director for SureFire, attended the event and let us use a number of the company’s products for low light and night fire demonstrations. He also gave me a quick preview of the Delta Knife.
Like I said, the Delta has a high “wow” factor. And before I left Blackwater, I told the SureFire reps that I had to have one to play with…uh…review for POLICE.
The Delta is a really handsome knife that comes in a padded case. It looks like a real collector’s item, but make no mistake, SureFire designed this folder to be a tool for operators, not just to sit on a shelf and collect dust.
The Delta features a frame lock system to secure the blade when it is open. This locking system is strong, and it is easy to manipulate even when wearing gloves. You can’t say the same things about many liner-lock or back-lock knives.
The Delta’s frame is made of titanium alloy. It’s light, very strong, and durable. For aesthetics and to reduce glare, the frame is bead blasted. This process also gives texture to the frame and helps to make it slip resistant.
The most important feature of any knife is the blade. SureFire knows this, so the Delta’s blade is composed of CPMS30V stainless steel that’s hardened to RC 59. That means the blade is tough; it will hold an edge; and it can be readily sharpened. The blade is bead blasted to match the frame.
One of the first things that I noticed about the blade of the Delta was the number of points of access on the blade that allow the user to open it. The blade incorporates a thumb hole for easy access, a thumb stud to prevent you from missing the thumb hole, and an assist lever on the back of the blade helps you open it faster. Trust me, you will be able to open the Delta no matter what condition you are in, with or without gloves, and no matter how cold and stiff your hands might be.
Another interesting feature of the Delta is a built-in wire cutter. This might seem like a “who cares” kind of thing, but my knife is a general use tool. There have been many times that I would have loved to have a wire snip on my knife.
To give you an idea of how much thought went into the Delta, SureFire even designed a really great rounded clip. Why is this important? Let’s just say that over the years my 5.11 Tactical pants have had pockets frayed from the corners of flat spring steel clips on my knives. SureFire’s rounded clip is designed to eliminate or reduce pocket wear.
I found the SureFire Delta to be a knife that carries well and, for its size, it never seemed to feel in the way or like a bulge in the pocket. I carried it in the slash pocket of my 5.11 Tactical pants and the rear pocket of my Wranglers with equal comfort. It accompanied me as I hiked over the hills and valleys of southwestern Pennsylvania throughout hunting season and was never dislodged from my pocket, even when I slid on my butt down a hill following a misstep on a muddy trail.
At first blush the SureFire Delta seems like an expensive knife; it lists for $299.99. But it offers a lot of bang for the buck. This knife is built to survive the worst you can dish out; it has features not found on other knives; and it is backed by the SureFire name. If you are looking for a high-quality knife the SureFire Delta is a good choice.
Scott Smith is a disabled veteran who served as an active-duty Army MP and in the U.S. Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard as a security policeman.
Surefire Delta Folding Knife
Blade Material: CPMS30V stainless steel
Frame Material: 6A14V titanium alloy
Blade Length: 3.5 inches
Overall Length: 8 inches
Weight: 4.6 ounces