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By: Eli Chaps
I recently purchased a Cold Steel Mini Tac tanto neck knife and am quite pleased with it.

Taken in the context of it's design and purpose, this is a really nice little knife. Like all the Cold Steel products I've owned, it is well made and extremely sharp.

You get a 3.75" blade, which is 3/4" longer than most common folding knives and being a fixed blade, you're not paying for pivot and locking mechanisms. The other really nice benefit of the fixed blade is that you have no worries about an inferior locking mechanism that can allow the blade to pop closed (much more common than I think a lot of folks realize).

It has an overall length of 6.75" and a weight just a touch over two and half ounces. It is thin but has a surprisingly thick spine for it's size. The jimping is plenty sufficient for a good thumb "grip" without being uncomfortable. The G10 material of the handle gives excellent surface for a secure grip and the finger notch is very natural feeling and ensures this knife isn't going to slip in your hand. The handle is a tad short with your pinky finger not really being able to wrap around it but you barely notice it and I feel it is a worthy trade-off to keep the overall package trimmed down.

The tanto style point means it is very strong.

I'm a thin guy but with a tucked-in t-shirt, there is just a little bump that most folks would just think is some type of necklace medallion and nothing definitive that indicates it is a knife. With an un-tucked shirt, you don't even notice it. It is light but does take a couple days to get used to and I know some folks just may not like it. The lockup in the sheath is very secure and I have no fear of the knife falling free.

This is a very nice option for those who wish to carry a good knife discreetly but would also be great for runners, hikers, camping, etc. They make four different blade styles of the Mini Tac line and I think the Mini Tac Skinner would be best suited for hunting and fishing applications. Even if you don't want to wear it around your neck, these are still very nice, handy knives to have in a pack or whatever.

I believe a lot of folks don't realize the benefits of a neck knife, especially if in a situation where it can be carried outside the shirt. They are very handy to get to and pretty much always with you. One condition when I really like my neck knife with me, particularly the tanto, is when sitting, such as in a car. A "tactical" knife on the belt or in a pocket becomes much more difficult to access than a knife around the neck. Likewise, I can see a lot to like about having one of the other style options out hunting, camping, etc.

I understand they aren't for everyone but they are worth considering. I also understand that it is not as easy to get to under a shirt as say a folder in your pocket but there's pros and cons there as well. All that said, I do wish there was some form of belt carry option available but as yet there is not.

I got mine for less than $40 but I see them going mostly in the $45-50 range which I think is very reasonable for a well made knife. They are made in Taiwan but at least that isn't China.

I'm very happy and look forward to buying either the skinner or kiridashi version before too long.

Here's a link to the website:

I wouldn't buy directly from Cold Steel though as like many manufacturers, their prices run higher than you can find elsewhere.
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