Pros: Overall Quality, Durability, None
Cons: Carry Position
Good 'n Bad in a limited field
I bought this RTAK sheath to house a Busse Basic 11 knife. GOOD THINGS: This sheath is large enough to hold the Basic 11 knife easily. There is a little rattle room which could be eliminated by removing the liner and molding it to the knife with heat before reinserting & regluing it into the cordura outer sheath. I like the outer pocket for Firesteel or sharpener carry, double-stitched reinforcing welt around perimeter of sheath, Molle attachment points on rear of sheath, bottom eyelets for leg lashing & included cord for leg tie. There are very few large sheaths on the market, so this one has little competition. Nonetheless, it is overall well-enough made to withstand the weekender and occasional uses it will see. Black color is fine, although adding digital camo (ACU or desert) or lighter shades like coyote brown, OD, or gray wouldn't hurt. BAD THINGS: Most of my negative impressions have to do with attaching mechanisms. HANDLE SNAP LOOPS: The double snap loops to hold the knife handle are sewn on, so they can't be easily removed if desired. I'd like to remove the upper one so I can fold over & fasten down the belt-passage tunnel (raises the sheath to ride higher) if wanted. As it is, I'll have to seam-rip away that upper snap loop to remove it so I can fold that belt portion of the sheath over. These sewn-on snap loops make it harder to achieve versatility in carry height options. Also, those double snap loops for holding the handle have a velcro adjustment system that makes them very stiff, with little adjustment range. The stiffness makes it tougher to bend the snap loop around the knife handle and get the snap closed (more on them below). A better mounting system is to sew on a vertical tab (like a belt loop on pants) and have the snap loop pass through it. That allows the loop to be a single layer of material offering sufficient strength with much greater flexibility. The snaps on the handle-holding loops seem to be very (overly?) tight. While making the security of retention quite good, the ease of knife access goes way down. I understand that this is a necessary trade-off to balance the two competing characteristics (retaining the knife securely vs ease of getting the knife out), but these snaps seem a bit too stiff IMHO. I'm hoping the snaps will break in over time and become somewhat easier to operate. -- Very Minor Nit To Pick -- The handle-holding snap loops adjust via velcro and a rectangular metal ring. On a wooden or other compressible material, that ring could dent or otherwise damage the handle material, depending on handle shape. OUTER POCKET BUCKLE CLOSURE The nylon strap for the outer pocket's snap-buckle closure is sewn onto the body of the pocket for the lower half of its length, rather than being attached only at the bottom of the strap. This prevents tightening the pocket's cover flap very much since you cannot cinch the strap/buckle down very far toward the bottom of the pocket. This is perhaps not an issue if you fill the pocket full of stuff, since the range of adjustment should cover the area of the strap where you want adjustment. However, more range is desirable vs less. Also, to keep the nylon strap from flopping around, there is velcro sewn to the strap to fasten it down to the sewn-onto-the-pocket portion of the strap. This added thickness makes it harder to cinch the strap down through the sliding (tabler) portion of the nylon snap-lock buckle. Worse is that the velcro hook portion is sewn to the part of the strap that you slide through the snap-lock's tabler slider, rather than sewing the loop (pile) part of the velcro onto that part of the strap. As it is, you will be sliding the more-easily damaged velcro hooks through the buckle instead of the more resilient and less-easily damaged loop part of the velcro. Also, once snugged and left in place, the buckle will be compressing and deforming the velcro hooks, further reducing their ability to do their job. It would have been better to have left all the velcro off this sheath, particularly that used on the handle-holding straps and the outer pocket's snap-lock strap, and instead simply used un-velcroed nylon straps with snaps if needed. BOTTOM LINE: Overall a well-made sheath large enough to hold the knife for which it was bought, which is a rarity in today's market. However, some of the accessory attachments seem over-engineered in ways that detract from the sheath's performance and limit its versatility.