Tiga Tactics' Knife Defense class provided a great introduction to...
If you spend a few minutes on the internet searching for survival knives, the name Mora is guaranteed to come up. This Swedish company has been making simple and tough fixed-blade knives since 1891, and still holds a reputation for bulletproof durability. Many bushcraft enthusiasts swear by their Moras, and they're a great choice for those with limited budgets — quite a few of the company's knives are priced under $20.
However, we often hear questions or criticisms about one feature of Mora knives: the partial tang. With few exceptions, Mora knives include what's called a partial or stick tang, meaning that the steel only extends partway through the handle. Full-tang knives are generally considered stronger and more durable, since the steel extends through the entirety of the handle in a single solid piece from tip to butt. Then again, this added steel also inevitably increases cost and weight.
So, how much abuse can a supposedly-inferior partial tang take? Will the handle crack or snap off under heavy use? YouTube channel Dutch Bushcraft Knives set out to determine this, and picked up a Mora Robust to put to the test. This carbon steel blade is said to be extra-thick and bonded to a shock-resistant handle — but how strong can it really be for $15? See for yourself:
First of all, don't try the above at home. And definitely don't try it without adequate eye protection, as these guys did in parts of the video.
While no one in their right mind would use a sharp knife to chop through steel wire and baton bricks under normal circumstances, these extreme tests show that the Mora Robust is in fact pretty robust. Obviously the edge was annihilated and had to be re-ground afterwards, but that would be true for any blade under the circumstances — even a solid ax blade will chip when pounded against a hard object. We'd say the plucky little Mora held up pretty well, especially for a knife in this price range.