Eka Swede 8 Bubinga and black proflex handle review.
Material: Sandvik 12C27 (stainless steel), 58HRc, Scandinavian grind
Locking mechanism: Backlock
Blade length: 8cm
Overall length: 18.5cm
Blade thicknes: 2.8mm
Handle material: Bubinga (African rosewood), black Proflex
Eka is a traditional Swedish knife making company, making knives since 1882. Eka Swede 8 is their traditional, general use backlock folder. In Europe, this knife retails for 50-70€ depending on the gift packaging and handle material. In US, it can be found for $40-$50.
I have ordered 2 of these knives, one with bubinga and one with plain black proflex handle, to keep the one I liked more, and give the other one away as a present. Knives arrived at a plain white boxes without a sheath. Out of the box, the black version was reasonably sharp and the knife opens with a nice reassuring click of the lock, which is very solid. The grind was nice and even but the angle of the bevel was inconsistent. It was too steep at the heel, much shallower at the belly and too steep again at the tip again. Bubinga handled knife was much duller out of the box and had the same problem with the bevel. Also the opening action was not as smooth and there was play in the blade. This was resolved by cleaning the pivot and tightening the it properly. You can also notice, that the lock doesn't sit precisely against the frame. I believe this is only a cosmetic failure and it doesn't affect the function of the lock.
I corrected the bevel on an Edge Pro Apex and the knife was hair popping sharp. It's easy to sharpen, holds the edge well and can get scary sharp. This extreme sharpness is lost faster than on my 100 N knife from Hamp (N690 steel, 60 HRC), but it can be easily restored with a 1600 grit ceramic hone. It's best to mask the blade with a tape when sharpening, as the blade gets small scratches easily.
I like the looks of the bubinga handle, but I prefer the ergonomics and feel of the proflex handle. As this is not supposed to be a safe queen, I prefer the function over form and will keep the black one for myself.
One reason, I like the ergonomics of the proflex handle more, is that the bubinga version has protruding liner and the wood doesn't sit flush with it. When gripping the handle hard, this can be little bit uncomfortable, as the liner presses against your palm.
Proflex version hides the liner inside the handle. It looks cleaner and the handle is slightly beefier thanks to the extra material.
Overall, this is a very nice knife and even after couple of weeks, I'm still looking forward to every opportunity to put it in use. If I had paid over 60€ for it, I might have been little bit disappointed because of the finishing issues, but, if you can find this knife for a good price, I highly recommend it.
I have the same problem you mentioned. The opening and closing is not smooth and sounds a little sandy, so I oiled it and it got better. Also there is that small space between the lock and the liners, and the blade has a slight play left and right, and if I press the handles together these gaps tighten. So I guess I should clean it and tighten the pivot, as you mentioned. Can you tell me how to do that properly? Did you use a flathead screwdriver? I am afraid of leaving ugly marks at the screws. I tried the broad flathead of a Victorinox Alox very gently, but couldn’t get a good grip.
Hi, yes, I’ve used a flathead screwdriver. Try to use the proper size, that way it shouldn’t leave any marks on the screw. Those can happen if you use a smaller screwdriver that won’t get a full length grip.
Hi, thanks for the quick answer! I found out that two metal washers would be the perfect tool for unscrewing the pivot. As I only have disassembled cheap frame-locks so far, can I ask two more things in advance: first, are the pivot screws glued together? It seems that some force is needed to loosen them, and do you use some screw fastener to glue them back together again afterwards? Second question: is the disassembly of the lockback mechanism tricky, or can I just push the pivot screws out, pull the blade and brass washers out, clean and oil everything, and put it together in the same way? I guess one could fix the lockback in an open position with a cable binder or something. Thanks!
“It was too steep at the heel, much shallower at the belly and too steep again at the tip again”
I disagree. Look at