By: Max Schulte
I had been reading a preparedness book called Personal Disaster Planning Handbook from Frank Borelli (available from Amazon.com, BarnesandNoble.com, etc) where he outlines the use of layered preparation. Part of the planning involved a bug out vest and on that vest you might decide to have a fixed blade knife. I decided that I would and began the search for a knife that felt good in the hand, was heavy enough for chopping, multi-purpose, and large enough to use as a defensive weapon if needed. I found what I was looking for in the coyote brown Gerber LMF II Survival.
The LMF II is a 10.59” long knife with a 4.84” partially serrated, drop point blade made from 420 HC stainless steel. The weight of the knife by itself is 11.67 ounces. The total package with the sheath weighs in at 24.28 ounces. The handle is glass filled nylon with overmolded rubber which helps prevent blisters. The sheath can be MOLLE mounted or worn on a belt. You will need six rows of MOLLE if that is your preferred method of attachment. If you choose to wear it on your belt, two leg straps are included to keep it from bouncing around.
One of the things I really like about the LMF II is that the sheath has a patented, built in sharpener to help you keep the straight portion of the blade sharp. The sheath also retains the knife without having to use the snaps. That allows you to mount the sheath up side down without worrying about the knife falling out. The LMF II Survival unlike the LMF II Infantry comes with a handy cord/harness cutter that has its own sheath. I like it because it prevents me from using a knife to simply cut a piece of 550 paracord or something similar.
The LMF II is designed as a tactical/survival knife but I feel that the LMF II is more than that. It’s a tool. I wanted to shake down the LMF II pretty well so I mounted the sheath to the MOLLE on my vest and went to a wooded area were I like to practice field craft skills. I figured I would work on gathering food and defense.
The first thing I did was build a twitch up snare. Besides using a rock to hammer in the stakes and the guts of 550 paracord for the snare line, the LMF II was used to build the entire snare. I didn’t cheat and use pruning shears to cut the sticks that I needed. The overmolded rubber grip prevented any discomfort to pressure points on my hand during use. I did not use gloves either.
Once the snare was done, I tore down the snare and began on the next task – I fashioned a spear. The handle of the LMF II is dished out slightly and has lashing holes near the guard and near the pommel. This attention to detail allowed me to lash the LMF II securely to a long stick. In this configuration it could be used to gather game at close range including spear fishing, defense, or gathering edibles that are out of reach. If you are going to make a spear, make sure it’s longer than you are tall. You’ll inevitably use it as a walking stick and I assure you that you don’t want to trip and have the LMF II go through your brain housing group.
If you’re down range or on a tactical team and looking for a great fixed blade knife for your kit, the LMF II was designed for you. It comes in foliage green, black, and coyote brown. The pommel can be used as an impact weapon or as a window break. Gerber also says that the LMF II can be used to cut your way out of an aircraft fuselage. I don’t have a fuselage to test that on so I’ll have to take Gerber’s word for it.
The only thing I would change about the LMF II is the blade. I would prefer the option of NOT having a serrated section. That’s just my preference and I admit, even with the mixed blade it’s a really nice piece of kit.
The LMF II Infantry and Survival can be found under the Tactical tab on Gerber’s website and the MSRP for both is $108. Visit the Gerber website at: http://www.gerbergear.com/
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