Buck has been making custom knives since 1902 and mass production started in 1961. The 102 Woodsman carries on the tradition of quality workmanship that has become synonymous with the name Buck. it was one of the first six models introduced by mass production. The Woodsman has a relatively short, non-serrated fixed blade and a black phenolic handle. Three other handle variations were originally available: desert ironwood, white melamine, or elk stag. Currently, Buck offers either a black phenolic handle as standard or a cocobola dymondwood handle as an upgrade on this popular knife and specifications are as follows:
- Finish: High satin polish
- Blade length: 4″
- Overall length: 7-7/8″
- Blade shape: Clip
- Carry method: Sheath
- Weight: 2.5 ounces unsheathed; 5.3 ounces sheathed (approximate)
Buck makes all of their standard blades out of hardened 420HC steel with a Rc 58 Rockwell hardness. This material provides excellent corrosion resistance as well as durability. Many of the original production 102 Woodsman blades are still in use by the original purchasers or their descendents.
The 102 Woodsman is an excellent all-purpose knife and serves well for either hunting or fishing. It is long enough for field dressing but is not unwieldy like larger knives can be. The crescent-shaped tip provides a fine point and thereby facilitates field dressing small animals or fish but is strong enough to field-dress a deer; some users report field-dressing elk with this versatile knife.
The 420HC steel blade keeps its honed edge and will stay sharp whether you are gutting, skinning, or processing. It is easily sharpened and the hilt protects the hands when they are wet or bloody. In addition, because it is a fixed blade, there is no danger of the blade collapsing when skinning or gutting an animal.
Not only is the 102 Woodsman an excellent hunting and fishing knife, it can be quite useful for camping chores as well. The compact size makes it easy to carry and the high satin finish on the blade makes it easy to spot if it is dropped; the light weight of just 2.5 ounces ensures that it won’t be burdensome on a hike. The phenolic handle requires virtually no maintenance and the blade durability ensures that you won’t constantly need to sharpen it. The Woodsman comes with its own durable black leather sheath, eliminating the need for a separate purchase. For added security, the sheath has a snap fastener that secures the knife inside.
Although designed primarily for outdoor activities, many cooks have found the 102 Woodsman to be a superior knife for use in the kitchen. Its compact and lightweight features combined with its superior cutting edge can greatly reduce meal preparation time, whether it’s chopping vegetables, seafood, or meat. Since the 102 Woodsman keeps its edge well, less time is spent sharpening the cutlery.
Many users report that the 102 Woodsman makes an excellent whittling knife and maintains a sharp edge longer than many of its competitors. The clip point is excellent for detail work while the spine is sturdy enough to discourage breaking.
Buck knives all carry Buck’s unparalleled forever guarantee and Buck guarantees all of their knives to be free of defects in workmanship or they will replace them free of charge. However, this guarantee does not extend to misuse of the knife. In other words, if the knife has been used as a screwdriver, a pry bar, or the like, the warranty will be invalidated although Buck will repair the knife, if possible, for a fee. Should the knife be unrepairable, Buck will extend a one-time offer of 50 percent off the regular retail price of a stock knife. This type of warranty is singular in the industry and not offered by any other manufacturer.
Whether you are peeling an apple or field dressing a deer, the 102 Woodsman Buck knife is the tool you want. Whether you are a seasoned hunter, just learning or an avid collector, you’ll want to include the 102 Woodsman in your arsenal. The 102 Woodsman will arrive sharpened, so exercise care when opening the box. Buck is a Christian company with a long history of integrity, both in their products and in their customer service. Buck knives are made in the U.S.