Esee 3HM

Discussion in 'Reviews' started by Stayinsharp, Apr 21, 2020.

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Which is your favorite HM

  1. 3hm

    20.0%
  2. 4hm

    60.0%
  3. 6hm

    20.0%
  1. Stayinsharp

    Stayinsharp Member

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    I had an Esee 3HM as soon as they brought out the kydex sheath for them . Although I must say.... I’d like the handle to be about a mm thicker on each side for my XL hands, the esee 3hm is one that has haunted me since I sold it.

    With the thinner (but very tough) stock of the 3, full tang, palm length blade, the perceivably bigger belly/ constant curve up to the point, and the 55-57hrc which is field serviceable with just a ceramic rod and leather belt, this knife checks almost every box the the late great Mors Kochanski created for the perfect bush knife.

    No. The knife isn’t a scandi. But, those of us with a bit of experience with knives will know that a Flat Grind isn’t too bad to sharpen once you get the hang of it.

    And no. The knife isn’t O1 or A2 which are the superior tool steels in my honest opinion (A2 being the best). The blade won’t hold its edge indefinitely. But that’s ok, because short of damage, you should be able to strop it back to a razor with just a few strokes on a decent strop thanks to Esee/Rowan’s 10-95. I get about and hour to an hour and 30-45 minutes of very clean cutting and very good slicing and then I’ll stop about 10x on each side...5 on each side and then alternate for 10. Boom. Back in action.

    And lastly no. It doesn’t readily strike a ferro rod with the spine. While I do often wish it did, I like the ability to use my left hand thumb to push the tip or belly into tight places :)P) in order to make those money cuts for trap triggers and notches.

    Now I know this may seem like a negative review As I’ve been pointing out several things that it isn’t, so let me get to the things that the ESEE 3 hm IS....

    For starters: it is the knife I regret selling the most. I sold it to a guy at work who wanted to get into this hobby but didn’t wanna break off the cash for a brand new esee. I let it go to him for around 40.00. That was dumb. Dumb, dumb, dumb. He hasn’t used it much since. But he assured me that it rides happily in his buttpack when hunting. (Is it cooler and more masculine to call it a buttpack and not a real tree printed phanny pack...I digress). I’ve at least taught him a few things to help him make it should an emergency arrive. But that’s the last time he’s used it.

    The 3hm sits in the size range that allows it to be nimble in hand, slicey in use, and very intuitive. Don’t get me wrong, a 4 inch blade is my absolute favorite length. That said, the 4HM doesn’t have the same geometry. And it might be me but the belly seems a tad different. Put this (3hm) in a man’s hand, woman’s hand, younger persons hand, they’ll know how to get it to cut.

    The Flat grind allows it to be an incredible slicer. That puts it above a scandi when using it for tasks like food prep and skinning. Woodcarving on a flat grind isn’t bad either- but a scandi will often win that battle. That said, this doesn’t suffer from the scandi over bite and can realistically provide wonderful curls to the less practiced of users. I find my curls pretty mush stay consistent when using either grind. So why not go with a grind that does the other tasks better.

    The blade, although smaller than the typical “bushcraft” sized knife is capable of batoning up to wrist thick logs. Yes I do it. No I don’t carry an axe (ever). And no I don’t get my knife stuck. Everrr. I always keep the size of wood that I’m batoning to wrist to forearm thickness no matter what knife I’m using. I never put it through something if I have to ask myself will my knife die if I try this. Also, I always have about 10 minutes to make about 5 wedges ranging in size. I start the process of the split with my knife. I finish with the wedge. Because, well.... knives are meant to cut. So I cut some flats into a stick and always respect my tool. Right tool for the job. And my greatest tool is using my brain.


    Lastly, the 3HM gets better with time. As the coating becomes worn, and the micarta becomes stained with blood sweat and tears, the knife just looks amazing. Want someone to show up to your bush camp with a brand new shiny knife and begin to share their YouTube wisdom with you. No? Neither do I. I want the guy that smells like campfire, BO and instant coffee to grab a stump to sit on, whip out a well battered Esee 3hm with his grimy hands, and help me set up a bow drill set.

    in conclusion. I miss my 3hm. I want another. Had an opportunity here recently that I missed out on and regretted it so much I search for my old photos and wanted to write this review. Thanks guys. Stay safe out there.
    if you read to here, thanks. It’s been a while since I reviewed something. I have another one in the works as well if this gets any attention. Mr Randall. If you’re reading this. Thanks for a great product.
     

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  2. Lostviking

    Lostviking Member

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    Nice write up!
     
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  3. Stayinsharp

    Stayinsharp Member

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    Just ordered up a new (used 3hm). Looking forward to him getting it out there for more use and hoping to add more real world use to this blade review

    thanks.
     
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  4. Stayinsharp

    Stayinsharp Member

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    To continue on with this write up, I’ve ordered an awesome 3HM from a member here on the forum. The scales came pretty clean with some dawn dish soap and a tooth brush.

    I’ve had it just a few weeks and have had it with me on numerous day hikes and one overnighter to the AT. I’m very confident in the knife and have little concern for it breaking. I find that it carves and slices better than most of my other knives. It’s geometry and curve of the belly is second to none.

    I will still baton this knife, but I’ll only do it on wrist thick wood or less. I’ve always been cautious when doing this with a knife anyway, and can’t find a logical need for batoning anything thicker. I always make a quick wedge or two to assist once the split is started. I don’t need the thickness of the esee 4 to feel confident in the strength and ability of the knife.

    I take a Fallkniven CC4 in the field and haven’t found a need for anything else for quick touch ups.

    this thing has replaced (for now) my full tang scandi knife of about a similar size. I’m not saying I won’t go back to scandi. I’m just saying that I’ve never had a Full flat grind that I appreciated as much as I do on the 3hm. And I am having a great time finding out all of the ways that the FFG can be amazing and why it can prove to Be the most versatile grind. It’s great in the woods. It’s great in camp. Great at carving. Great at skinning and game prep. And great at food prep. Might even be a good fighter if needed (though I see a knife as a tool first).
     

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  5. Stayinsharp

    Stayinsharp Member

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    Got in the woods the other day. Harvested a wrist thick tulip poplar that wasn’t gonna make it. Quartered it down with the 3hm, skinned the bark, and set it on the sun. We’ve had several days in the 80’s and it seasoned up decently fast. As I stated before, the 3 hm appears to meet all of Mors’ requirements other than the sharpened spine. The blade does up a very nice feather stick. He always said 4 curls is a pass in his class and an instructor should get 10-20 curls on one feather.... I wonder if any Karamat instructors use or have used the Esee 3 or 3HM. If not, I think they should give it a try. But the way, I bought this knife used on the forum. It had the factory edge (and still pretty much does). It has only touched a super fine ceramic rod and a strop.

    @jeffrandal
    @mikeperrin

    this is your best design in my humble opinion. I’ll prob be buying another just for the sake of redundancy and to help your business in any way that I can during these crazy times.
     

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