Presented by: Work Sharp Knife & Tool Sharpeners
The Tactile Knife Co. Bexar is the KnifeNews Readers’ Choice for Best Slipjoint/Non-Locking Knife 2021! This stylish Southern slicer secured the singular spot at the summit, surmounting several strong slippies in a stacked segment that included the Civivi Ki-V, Hoo Knives V1, Kansept Bevy, James Brand Wayland, and LionSteel Jack.
It’s safe to say that Tactile Knife Co. had a hell of a year in 2021. Any EDC enthusiast who likes good pens will know about Will Hodges’s first company, Tactile Turn. The shop’s bolt action, clicky, and fountain pens have been staples in the EDC pen scene for years, and anyone who also liked knives had to wonder if Tactile would ever turn its attention to making a folding knife. When Tactile Turn released the BAK, a utility knife in a pen-style body, back in 2019, Hodges told us he was working on a high-end folder. Then he founded Tactile Knife Co., recruited some talented designers and machinists, and delivered on that promise big-time with some killer releases this year.
There’s so much joy in the material details of the Bexar that it’s easy to take for granted what a smart, cool design it is. “We’ve got some incredibly talented people, an amazing machine shop, and the Bexar is proof that Matt Palmore and Tim Harbert can design some really cool knives,” Hodges himself says. The clip point blade doesn’t stray too far from classic lines, but it looks just right, and the unusual, stacked groove-style nail mark gives this two-hand opener a real modern attitude. Its true EDC dimensions are enhanced by a choice of super steels: You can get it in the excellent CPM-20CV but, in a cool and canny move, Tactile was also among the first shops to offer a production knife in MagnaCut, the super steel designed by metallurgical maven Larrin Thomas. Getting a cutting edge steel in an exciting new design is about as good as it gets for a knife enthusiast in 2021.
And, of course, we can’t talk about a Tactile Knife Co. release without pointing out the sheer, well, tactile pleasure of the handle. The profile sits comfortably in that “just right” spot: it’s just big enough to be comfortable, but short – and thin! – enough to be completely unobtrusive in the pocket and fit into all but the most stringent EDC loadout. And, of course, you can’t talk about a Tactile product without mentioning that instantly recognizable linework on the scales. The Bexar is, simply, a joy to look at and hold, it all comes together flawlessly thanks to superlative fit and finish. If you didn’t know better, after handling a Bexar (or indeed a Rockwall), you’d think that Tactile had been in the business for decades, as everything is dialed in and as close to perfect as can be. “The whole team is doing a hell of a job with execution,” Hodges says.
“The main thing I’d like to emphasize to people is that we sold our first knife March 2, 2021,” he continues. And for as superlative as Tactile Knife Co.’s first year has been, he says 2022 looks even brighter. “If people like what we did in our first year, stick around. We’ve got a lot of fun ideas, and we’ve got big plans!”
Attention high rollers and avid collectors: on Monday the Readers’ Choice Awards will return with the reveal of the Best New High-End Knife of 2021!
Monday, January 3rd: Best New Tactical Fixed Blade (WINNER: Benchmade 375 Adamas)
Tuesday, January 4th: Best New EDC Fixed Blade (WINNER: LionSteel H2)
Wednesday, January 5th: Best New Outdoors Fixed Blade (WINNER: TOPS Bestia)
Thursday, January 6th: Best New Kitchen/Culinary Knife (WINNER: Benchmade Station Knife)
Friday, January 7th: Best New Slipjoint/Non-Locking Knife (WINNER: Tactile Knife Co. Bexar)
Monday, January 10th: Best New High-End Knife (MSRP of $300 or more)
Tuesday, January 11th: Best New Value Folder (MSRP of $100 or less)
Wednesday, January 12th: Best New Folder
Thursday, January 13th: Best Knife Upgrade
Friday, January 14th: Best Overall Lineup
Knife in Featured Image: Tactile Knife Co. Bexar