The good guys at Extrema Ratio produce combat and heavy-duty knives for military use all over Europe. In my book, these are some of the finest combat knives produced, and the blade reviewed here is no exception.
The Col Moschin is named after the Austrian mountain position captured by the 9th Reparto d'Assalto during World War I. This unit was disbanded after the war and later re-united in different configurations. In 2002 the unit now known as the 9th Incursori "Col Moschin" were blessed with their own Extrema Ratio knife design, that we, the humble public are now able to enjoy as well.
Unboxing this fella is a joy - it is wrapped in a simple, branded clear plastic bag in a minimalist black box. Take it out of the box and you instantly feel that this is not a joke - you paid top dollar for this, and you are not disappointed when you finally get your sweaty little hands on that forprene handle. Delicious.
The knife snaps out of the ultra secure double sheath and the long, slender blade is exposed - in all its deadly piercing-friendly, light weight glory.
The style of this knife sits right between a dagger, a bayonet and a survival knife. It gives a long reach and has a partly serrated blade for maximum flexibility in the field. The sheath is molle-backed and mounts securely upside down with no problem.
This knife comes in different blade variations, among them a non-serrated and double edged version. The Col Moschin is also available in an awesome desert camo as well as a beautiful and more carry-friendly compact option.
Extrema Ratio's design team have been spitting out some incredibly beautiful combat knife designs, and this particular variation appealed to me because of its long, slender, classic shape and the double handle guards. The finish is a dull, black "Testudo" finish - resistant to corrosion and oxidation. The forprene handles are the most comfortable and grippy I have ever handled, and are fastened by one single screw for easy cleaning.
Let's take a look at the Moschin in detail...
Beautiful blend of elegantly shaped Forprene and steel. One single screw decouples the one-piece handle.
The blade is ever so gently hunched forward, ready to pounce - it looks silent, swift and very sharp. This is not meant for clumsy camping.
I love the simplicity of the unique handle shape design, the handle guards, the quality of the black coating.
Great grip on the Forprene. It is a perfect balance of a little give, great friction and ruggedness. I wish all my knives had Forprene handles after using this.
Two fingers fit the front groove and balances this ultra light knife really well in the hand. It is a long knife, but it seems very easy to navigate.
FIT & FINISH
This knife is perfect. Sheath is perfect. Materials are perfect. Coating is perfect. You definitely get what you pay for here.
There is not much that can fail on this knife - if anything i guess the blade could be thicker - but this is not meant as a bush craft piece.
Having said that, this knife is very safe to use - the handles are ultra grippy, even when wet.
The sheath is the most most amazing thing - everything about it is well made and sets a very high bar for others to follow. The sheath retention 'lip' is fitted perfectly to hold the knife securely, even when upside down.
This knife is probably not much use to you unless you live in an environment where looking like a commando with a huge, blacked-out combat knife strapped to your leg comes across as the most natural thing in the world. That is not the world I live in, so I have very limited use for this.
I also find partial serrations to be little use, unless I have very crude tasks to do. For its intended purpose - as a combat knife for parachutists, I believe it would be perfect (apart from its length).
As a home defense alternative to a handgun, this might do the trick, if that sort of thing tickles your fancy.
The Col Moschin is a joy to use. Very satisfying.
A very expensive and well-made knife. Unless you bring this to a combat zone, you are probably better off with a cheaper, less aggressive (and maybe shorter) knife.
Beautiful, minimalist packaging. The sheath is probably worth at least $80 on its own, it is quite simply fantastic.
Owning the Col Moschin as a civilian seems a bit over the top - it really is one of the few knives that are truly meant for professional, military use.
Buy the Col Moschin in all its variations at xtremeknives.com.
At a glance:
Total Length: 290mm (11.42")
Blade Length: 160mm (6.30")
Weight: 260g (9.17 ounces)
Blade Thickness: 6.3mm (0.25")
Blade Steel: N690 cobalt stainless steel
Blade Hardness: Rockwell 58 HRC
Partially serrated blade
MOLLE Compatible Sheath