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Knife Review: ​The Tops Silent Hero Smooth Fixed Blade Knife

Knife Review: ​The Tops Silent Hero Smooth Fixed Blade Knife

Posted by SD on Jan 22nd 2020

The Tops Silent Hero Smooth Fixed Blade Knife

In late 1998, TOPS Knives was founded with a mission to create the highest-quality knives around. Their knives are tools, designed and built using the extensive knowledge and real-life experiences of many operators with backgrounds in military, law enforcement, outdoor professions, and martial arts. Specifically, they have worked with designers with backgrounds ranging from Navy Seals to Airborne Rangers, from martial arts instructors to survival experts, and from SWAT Team Members to Native American weapons experts. They have a designer from nearly every background that uses hard-core knives. Perhaps the best part, all TOPS fixed blades are manufactured and hand-finished at their facility in the heart of the Rocky Mountains, USA.

Their knives have been requested and deployed in “Hot Spots” all over the world. Numerous individuals who are or were field operators use or have used their knives and report top performance and reliability from times when their life depend on the tools, they had with them.

Their mission is to create the highest-quality, rugged, unique, overbuilt, and functional tools for service members and outdoorsmen of all kinds through their superior manufacturing, finishing processes, and genuine field operators’ testing.

They have a vision to provide their clients with tools they can trust completely to exceed their expectations every time. Their values include American integrity, quality, durability, performance, and consistency.

Today we will be discussing the Tops Silent Hero Smooth Fixed Blade Knife.

The Blade:

The blade on this is made out of 1095 high carbon steel that comes in with an RCC 56-58. This is a basic from of carbon steel. The steel is most commonly used in knives, especially knives that are going to have to take a beating. The steel has a carbon content of .95% which does harden the steel and reduce the amount of wear that a blade will experience over time. However, this steel is also not as tough as other steels that you are going to come across because it doesn’t have as much manganese as it could. Manganese also makes a steel harder, which does make it a little bit more brittle. This means that 1095 carbon steel is not going to be brittle, which is one of the reasons that it can take such a hard beating. This blade steel holds its edge for long periods of time and is also easy to sharpen. Unfortunately, this steel does tend to rust easily.

The blade has been finished with a BlackWash finish, which is also known as an acid wash finish.

The stonewashed finish is created when the blade has been tumbled in an abrasive material. The finish easily hides scratches and smudges that will accumulate over time. It also provides a less reflective surface than you would get with a brushed or satin finished blade. The stonewash finish is known to be one of the more low-maintenance finishes, because it does easily hide those marks that do accumulate over time on a blade. The stonewash finish does also look rather rugged, because of the textured appearance that it has. It gives the blade a well-worn look in the best way. This is an advantage because the blade is going to continue looking like that throughout its life. It isn’t going to become too much more worn. And nay imperfections that the blade may gain are just going to add to the look, instead of taking away from it.

An acid stonewash is a finish when the blade has had an acid treatment that darkens the blade before it undergoes TOPS Silent Herostonewashing. The acid oxidation enhances a blade’s rust resistance by placing a stable oxide barrier between the steel and the environment. This provides a rugged, well-worn look that will stay for long periods of time. It also makes the blade darker, which adds to the ruggedness of it.

The blade on this TOPS knife has been carved into a hunter’s point style blade. This shape is known for being versatile and durable. It makes the ideal shape for a knife that is going to be used in the field as much as the Silent Hero will be.

For starters, the spine of the blade curves very slowly to the point. On the spine, there is also a row of thicker jimping. The jimping on the spine is going to give you the control that you need when the going gets messy or tough. The gentle slope of the spine does create a slightly lowered point. The lowered point is going to give you slightly more control over your cuts, which may be crucial if you are in the field. The Silent Hero has been designed to take on some of the toughest things, including skinning game. The lowered point and the control it adds is going to allow you to easily skin game without worrying about piercing any of the internal organs.

The point on the drop point is broad as well. The point is thicker, which also means that it is going to be stronger. This is a crucial aspect of the TOPS knife, because it allows you to have the strength and durability to take on some of the harder tasks. The last major advantage of the drop point is how large the belly is. The large belly provides you with plenty of surface area which will allow slicing to be a breeze.

The blade has been sharpened into a plain edge, which is the most common edge that you are going to find, as well as being the most versatile blade that you are going to find. The plain edge is going to be easier to sharpen and easier to get a fine edge on. It is also going to equip you to take on a wider variety of tasks.

The Handle:

The handle on this fixed blade is made out of black linen micarta. This material is created when thin layers of canvas are soaked in a phenolic resin and then set. This process creates a material that is strong, lightweight (which is crucial for a knife that you are going to be carrying with you into the field), and even looks classy. It is able to look classier than most other knife handle materials because it is the canvas that shows through, instead of a plastic-y looking material. This material is also durable and tough, which is exactly what you will need out of a fixed blade.

While micarta does have plenty of great aspects, it does have a few drawbacks. The absolute biggest one is that when the process is first finished, it doesn’t have any surface texture. This means that a lot of time and hand labor is going to need to go into carving in texture on this handle, which is going to make it a more expensive product. You can count on TOPS to etch in enough texture so that you can feel confident and comfortable using this knife. While the micarta may have started off with minimal texture, the handle offers plenty so that you can get the job done while staying safe.

One of the other bigger drawbacks that micarta has is that it does tend to be brittle. This means that if subjected to too hard or sharp of an impact, it may begin to break down and crack.

Handle shape. The handle is pretty standard for a fixed blade. The spien of it curves in slightly before bulging out toward the butt. The butt is rounded and does feature a lanyard hole. The belly portion of the blade starts with a finger groove, because the finger guard is actually part of the metal of the blade. The rest of the handle is simple and comfortable to hold.

TO provide you with enough texture that you can use this fixed blade for nearly anything, the surface of it has been roughly textured.

The Mechanism:

This is a fixed blade, which does mean that there actually isn’t’ a mechanism on it. Instead, the blade is always in “open” position. To store this blade, you instead cover it with a sheath that is included, rather than folding it back into the handle like a traditional pocketknife.

There are a few benefits to having a fixed blade. The first is that it is easier to take care of. This is mostly due to the fact that there is no mechanism. There are no small or moving parts that you have to be concerned about. All you really have to do is wipe down the blade and the handle and oil the blade occasionally.

You can also bring a fixed blade into play the fastest out of any type of mechanism. This is because all you have to do is withdraw the blade from the sheath and you are ready to go.

The last reason that having a fixed blade is so phenomenal is because it can take on a much wider variety of tasks. This is because the blade is thicker and longer, since it does not have to fit inside of the handle. You can use it for truly anything that comes your way. Especially since the TOPS Silent Hero is as large as it is, there shouldn’t be any task that comes your way that you aren’t able to complete. You will be able to slice, saw, pry, and even hammer with this knife. Truly, the Silent Hero will let you accomplish any of your outdoors tasks.

The Sheath:

The sheath that accompanies this knife fixed blade is made out of leather. Leather is definitely known as one of the more traditional materials that sheaths are made out of. Leather is known to be rugged, tough, and strong. This is not going to break apart the way that plastic does. And, if the stitches happen to come undone, you can easily re-sew them. Leather is also going to provide a custom fit for your Silent Hero once it has been broken in. Not only that, but it is going to be completely silent. You will be able to pull the Silent Hero in or out and not have it make a sound. This is idea for those outdoor lovers that don’t want to disturb the wilderness. It is also perfect for hunters who don’t want to scare away their potential game. Lastly, when cared for, leather has an incredible aesthetic. When taken care of correctly, it is only going to look better with age.

Of course, leather is also going to have some disadvantages. The first is that it is not a waterproof material. If it is exposed to water often, it can dry out, which will lead the leather to crack. Leather is also not heat resistant. The same thing is going to happen, the oils can dry out and cause it to crack. Luckily for us, a simple oil occasionally is going to make the leather last longer and age a little better.

The Specs:

The blade on the Silent Hero measures in at 6.38 inches long with handle that measures in at 4.87 inches long. This means that the overall length of the knife measures in at 11.25 inches long, which is massive, even for a fixed blade. The blade’s thickest portion measures in at 0.19 inches thick. With such a massive knife, you can expect it to be heavy as well, and it is. It weighs in at 12 ounces. The TOPS knife was made in the United States of America.


This fixed blade knife features black linen micarta handles, a hunter's point style blade in a Black River Wash finish and includes a leather sheath.

The Silent Hero was designed by Anton Du Plessis of South Africa which showcases a great design and plenty of versatility in the field. Large enough to chop, but small enough to complete finer tasks, each full tang designed fixed blade can handle bush crafting, survival and even tactical purposes.

This TOPS knife is available at BladeOps. To order yours today, click here