Today’s tactical fixed blade knives still resemble the first Bronze Age daggers of 4000 years ago, especially in their handle design. Michael Martinez, inventor of the Merlin® knife deployment system, didn’t start out to redesign the fixed blade, but he explains, “We tested over 400 knives with the Merlin system, and I kept noticing how many knives, even expensive ones, didn’t feel right, didn’t have a grip that gave both control and comfort in the four fundamental tactical grips.” Michael’s design firm, Group Design, Inc., reached out to a team of medical specialists for the answer. Their Ultima™ achieves 22 out of 23 ideal contact points with its unique patent-pending* handle. The injection-molded black Zytel® scales feature over 70 triangular grip segments, separated by sipes, or “ooze grooves” which channel away water, mud and oil. Horizontal grooves are placed under the fingertips for optimum feel. The scientific placement and crisp edges of these segments result in the best possible contact for tactical grips. Because tactical knifes are inevitably used as pry bars, Michael’s team created a butt pry tip as an extension of the blade tang, with a rounded tip that is equally useful opening a junction box or breaking a window. The Ultima is available with a 6.75” or 4.95” full-tang blade of 1.4116 stainless steel with a light bead-blast non-reflective finish. It is available with Razor-Sharp or Razor-Sharp combined with our exclusive Veff™ Serrated edges. Developed by Oregon City, Oregon, knife designer Tom Veff, these serrations are unlike traditional serrations, which are usually small scallops oriented at 90 degrees to the blade cutting edge, Veff Serrations are wide and angled at 60 degrees to the edge. The resulting cutting points bite instantly and dig deep upon contact, while the large, surgically sharp valleys slice smoothly and effortlessly. The points of traditional serrations have a tendency to snag and fray when cutting rope and similar flexible material. Veff Serrations slice through cleanly, giving dramatically improved cutting ability on rope, webbing, strapping, hoses and leather. The large, open pattern of Veff Serrations allows even novices to restore their edges with a 3/8” ceramic sharpening rod. CRKT believes its application of Veff Serrations on its Ultima™ tactical fixed blades is the first use of this new technology on a production knife. These serrations extend the utility of the Ultima into sport and work tasks, such as hunting, camping, recreational boating and commercial fishing, where the ability to cut a line quickly may be a life-and-death matter. The Ultima is ideal for the Veff Serrations, which are angled to feed material on the pulling stroke, because of the knife’s unique patent-pending handle designed for optimal grip power. An injection-molded black polypropylene Ultima Trainer is also available. Tactical Sheath. The Ultima’s custom black Cordura®/Zytel® sheath has an injection-molded liner. Dual belt loops are Velcro® adjustable. For maximum versatility, there are ample grommets with a length of 550 paracord included, an adjustable leg strap, plus a slotted sheath back that can mount on MOLLE gear. Removable security handle straps with snaps give access and security. A utility pocket with a Fastex™ buckle will carry a variety of folding knives, multipurpose tools or sharpeners. After 4,000 years of scientific progress, the only thing the Ultima shares with its bronze ancestors is its role in the mission.