Review: Civivi Knife – Tamashii
A German version of this review can be found in the german Tacticalforum here.
The Civivi Tamashii is the product of a collaboration between Bob Terzuola (the father of the tactical folding knife) and Civivi Knife. Known for their budget friendly, but high quality knives, Civivi has become a global name among knife producers as well as designers.
As I was always a fan of Bob Terzuola’s designs, I was happy when I got the chance to take a closer look at the Tamashii – one of the most recent collaborations with Civivi.
So let’s get a brief overview and some specs, before jumping into the details.
The Civivi Tamashii is a fixed blade EDC knife with a timeless tactical design, inspired by Japanese swords. Featuring a D2 full tang blade with G10 handles and a Kydex sheath, the knife carries inconspicuously and provides a firm grip.
Made of quality materials, it convinces with its purpose built design and practical approach to tactical inspired EDC knives.
- Overall Length: 8.8″ / 223.5 mm
- Blade Length: 4.07″ / 103.3 mm
- Handle Length: 4.73″ / 120.2 mm
- Blade Thickness: 0.18″ / 4.5 mm
- Weight: 4.43oz / 125.8 g
- Steel: D2 (59-61 HRC)
The Civivi Tamashii
Tamashii is Japanese for “Soul” and the influence of the Island can be immediately grasped, when looking at the knife. Bob Terzuola is known for his purpose-built designs and the clean and practical concept of the Tamashii earned it the “Best Tactical” and “Best In Show” award at Blade Show West 2021.
With an overall length of 22,3 cm it is an ideal backup knife, which carries lightly and inconspicuously. It is advertised as full tang knife and features a G10 grip that fully encloses the tang
The blade of the Tamashii
Looking at the blade, the Japanese influence is immediately recognizable. Featuring a Tanto inspired blade with a swedge and a flat grind, the blade is not only designed to be a fierce cutter, but also an effective stabbing tool.
The spine is flat and features a straight back, even if it does look curved. Jimping on the back of the spine provides a firm grip for the thumb when doing fine cutting tasks. The pronounced belly of the blade further improves the cutting abilities of the blade.
Laser markings show not only Bob Terzuola’s logo on one side, and Civivi’s on the other, but also a small steel designation: D2
The handle of the Tamashii
Made of G10, the handle of the Tamashii feels soft and comfortable in hand. It is fixed with stainless steel pins to the tang and features a lanyard hole at the pommel (one paracord lanyard comes with the knife).
While the handle may feel slick at first, the profile itself provides a firm grip. This is a result of the choil for the index finger, as well as the thumb ramp with its pronounced jimping. Choil and ramp work comfortably together to hold the knife securely.
The two G10 scales are fitted together in a clean and almost invisible fashion. Only in certain areas you can actually see the line, where it comes together.
The Civivi Tamashii comes in a well fitted Kydex sheath. It snaps in and doesn’t rattle. Made from two parts, the sheath is joined by 6 grommets. These also allow the use of the T-Clip – a Terzuola designed belt and gear clip, similar to a tek-lok.
The T-Clip can be positioned differently in order to carry the knife horizontally or vertically. A nice detail is the flat face of the screws to the outside, which creates a more slick and cleaner look and complements the whole design concept.
The sheath features a small drain hole, to let water and debris seep through.
Quality and Manufacture
Considering the price of the Civivi Tamashii, it is amazing what you get. Not only a Terzuola design, but also quality materials and a solid, clean and flawless construction. The knife itself is beautifully made, there are no scratches, machining marks or whatsoever.
The handle scales are tightly fitted to each other with such small tolerances that I couldn’t see the split at first.
G10, D2 steel, Kydex… these are high quality materials that you won’t find that often together in a product in this price range. All in all, an excellent example of Civivi’s aim to offer high quality knives for budget prices.
The Civivi Tamashii in use
Looking at the size of the Civivi Tamashii I have to say that there is a wonderful balance between length, width and weight. When carrying the knife on the belt, it feels like it is not there at all. The flat profile makes it vanish under jackets and shirts but still manages to provide a firm grip.
Speaking of the grip. At first I was skeptical because of the slick G10 handles. They feel very smooth and my concern was that there will not be enough grip when using the knife. However, the choil for the index finger, as well as the thumb ramp on top provide plenty of security. Combined with a lanyard loop, the knife stays where it should – in your hand.
With a fencing or reverse grip, the knife feels very natural and fast in hand. The Jimping on the spine of the blade provides a firm place for a forward grip, in case finer work is needed. Using a hammer grip the handles show their flat profile. While not being uncomfortable, users with bigger hands might miss the volume of a thicker handle.
The Civivi Tamashii did not come razor sharp out of the box, but it had a usable sharpness to it, which was quickly changed to a decent sharpness after a few strokes on the sharpmaker.
In the everyday carry scenario, the Civivi Tamashii performs as a valuable slicer, because of its 4,5mm thin blade. The timeless look makes it suitable not only for formal occasions, but also the daily use, be it in the urban jungle or more serious job applications.
Naming the knife “Tamashii” was a good call – this knife has soul and knows how to enchant its owner. In that sense Cvivi was able to pull off yet another successful collaboration with a globally known designer. Getting the award at Blade Show West is one thing, having the knife in hand and understanding why it got that award is another one.
The combination of Japanese design elements and high quality materials resulted in a gorgeous blade that not only looks good, but also performs as an EDC user in everyday life. Be it in the city or outdoors, the knife is able to convince in fine cutting tasks but also capable of professional backup functions.
“Bang for the buck” factor is huge in this case and especially people who cannot afford custom Terzuola knives will enjoy getting their hands on this one.
With that being said, many thanks to WE Knife/Civivi Knife for giving me the chance to take a closer look at this blade. The knife is available at authorized dealers.
Thank you for reading!
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