I am a lot like my father. I appreciate fine craftsmanship and am a sucker for a good knife. When I became a man there was one thing I knew I could get my dad for a special occasion that would surely put a smile on his face, and that was a knife. Not just any knife, but a good quality one that would be used hard and it had to shave hair and be tough.

We don’t baby our knives, they might be cutting rope, opening a box or cleaning a deer or wild hog. They have to be sharp, durable and hold an edge. A big fan of Wilson Combat products I came across a knife from them I just had to have. The Rapid Response XL with ELmax steel.

This knife features a 3.5″ locking blade and a titanium frame in gun metal grey with a G10 inlay for added grip.

It is easy and fast to deploy and locks up solid.  The left side of the frame (opposite the G10 inlay side) has a slot in it and a section is under pressure to snap into place to lock the blade with solid contact to prevent the blade from closing accidentally.  The blade will not close unless you make it do it with deliberate action and force.

I have been using the kinfe for several months now.  It came wicked sharp.  I have used it to clean a few wild hogs which are notoriously hard on blades due to their thick hide.  The knife held up well and I just recently sharpened it with the Ken Onion Edition Worsharp knife sharpener (love it).

This is an awesome knife that just feels good in my hand, balances well and just works.

This is a knife I would have loved to give my dad.  I know he would have appreciated it.







Wilson Combat RRX ELmax knife












If you want to get into the details of Elmax


The best all around knife steel

Uddeholm Elmax is a perfectly balanced PM grade which has been designed to reach a hardness well over 60 HRC with good corrosion resistance and excellent edge retention. The superclean production process combined with small sized powder and carbides guarantees trouble free grinding and polishing.
Our process and powder properties also ensure a super fine edge and that it can be ground even at hardness up to 62 HRC . This means that the final grinding can be done after hardening, eliminating heat treatment related risks such as distortion and surface decarburization. It also means maximized toughness and a minimized risk for edge chipping.

Internal lab toughness tests have shown that Elmax, even at maximum hardness, outperformes other stainless PM knife grades regardless of their hardness.

Relative property profile for Uddeholm Elmax

(At recommended hardness)

Elmax wear resistance and edge retention vs competitor PM grade and AISI 440C


Elmax toughness vs competitor PM grade and AISI 440C


Polishability graph for Uddeholm Elmax

The high chromium content gives Uddeholm Elmax a good corrosion resistance. The addition of vanadium and high carbon content further improves the hardness and abrasive wear resistance.















Heat treatment

Recommended heat treatment  Austenizing  Cryo treatment  Tempering  Aim hardness
UDDEHOLM VANAX 1975 oF (1080 oC)1

-320 oF (-195 oC)

390 oF (200 oC)a

58 HRC


1900 oF (1010 oC)1

-320 oF (-195 oC)

480 oF (250 oC)a

58 HRC

2100 oF (1150 oC)2

-320 oF (-195 oC)

 390 oF (200 oC)a

62 HRC








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Founding staff member, avid shooter, hunter, reloader and all around gun geek with an obsession for perfection
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