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chiruwa AK vs Busse NMFBM

Discussion in 'Himalayan Imports' started by Helmut_S, Apr 21, 2012.

  1. Helmut_S


    Feb 12, 2012
    I posted about taking down my Photinia hedge over at Busse forums:
    This was all done with a Nuclear Meltdown Fusion Battle Mistress, or 'NMFBM' for short.
    Now I have a CAK as well and am trying to process all this wood. This is very hard wood, btw: when I shove the thicker branches into my chipper (not a mall special: Bearcat 3" model, the kind one rents at Home Depot) I have to lean on it with all my weight, it produces sawdust rather than chips. A small arborist type chainsaw strains to get through this stuff.
    Impressions: the CAK is easier to handle when limbing branches while holding the main one up, or chopping a thick limb apart while holding it off the ground. The tremendous forward weight distribution allows for effective chopping even when hand holding a 3-5" limb, which gives and rebounds under the impact. The NMFBM needs more precise technique and doesn't grab the limb like the CAK does.
    If rested on a solid foundation, i.e. a large stump, the NMFBM does at least equally well, and MAY do better with experience. So MAY the CAK! (Who knows where exactly my experience is lacking :))
    If/when chopping on the ground (rocks etc.) the NMFBM is significantly less prone to roll/chip the edge. My CAK tip and areas around the tip are dented due to impacts with the ground, while my NMFBM has only very minor dents despite having done a lot more work to date.
    Conclusion: as long as I can reasonably avoid ground contact, or don't care about the need to regrind, the CAK feels better/easier in most situations. As a dedicated chopper, going off road in a vehicle in the PacNW and encountering downed trees and branches, I would choose it over the NMFBM. If I plan on/anticipate the need to indiscriminately cut into hard materials, like car panels, door hinges, rocky soil, the NMFBM would shine.
    Cost of my CAK, with shipping: $140
    Cost of NMFBM, sans sheath: $850 (if I had bought it at time of release, it would have been more like $500 or so)
    What would I bring if I knew I had to chop a lot of wood? CAK, no question.
    If only one knife, anything could happen scenario: NMFBM, equally easy choice
    would I consider any alternative/other type/company? unlikely: U.S. made Khukuri like objects typically don't add much/anything. The CS ones are either crappy or expensive, and even Amazon has some fairly devastating reviews of the CS San Mai, their flagship. Large Bowies don't seem to offer any real advantage, and I see nothing by way of steel that would clearly bias toward a different brand. 1095 is inferior to INFI in every category except cost of knife, and is not clearly superior to 5160. I own a Fiskars axe, which i use to chop the roots with, as it is cheap and will inevitable dull due to contact with rocks, hence needs to be reground, and eventually replaced. Even without hitting rocks, the axe has substantial difficulties getting through these very hard roots, and I am getting a real workout using it. Either CAK or NMFBM would chop through the roots quicker, but I'd rather sacrifice a $50 or less axe if I have a choice.
    Last, fun factor: the CAK wins here. It almost chops by itself, and I could, if I wanted to, get an even bigger model for more robust action, etc.
    Recommendations: if money matters, a CAK will work just fine for everything, and lack of hardness outside the sweet spot can easily be compensated for with a) diligence, and b) knowledge of sharpening technique.
    If money don't matter: get as many knives as you can, and play with all of them :)
    if you really, really can have only one, and your life is at stake: NMFBM, baby! that goes pretty much for comparisons to ANY other knife: I don't see anything out there that can simultaneously outchop, hold an edge, resist damage etc. compared to a large Busse knife.
    If I can have two, I'd take the CAK for chopping/processing wood and similar over the NMFBM, and bring a smaller INFI blade for work on materials that knives were never designed for.
  2. DaBird


    Jan 3, 2006
    VERY good review but a few photos would go a long way as well !!!
  3. Helmut_S


    Feb 12, 2012
    Ask, and you shall receive:

    As you can see, this is not an amateur model, 11HP engine, etc…

    took me 60 hard, deliberate chops to get to this
    it really didn't feel like wood, more like some really hard plastic, or soft metal :)

    some of the stumps, before I dug them up
    see how dark/dense the wood looks?
  4. davidf99

    davidf99 Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Sep 27, 2011
    Did you clean or polish the CAK before taking the photo?

    The blade looks like it was lounging on the Riviera rather than chopping through logs.

    -- Dave
  5. topgun0728


    May 15, 2009
    @davidf99, LOL, that's exactly what I thought!

    Maybe Helmut treated Knifey to a nice meal and massage after that hard workout. ;)
  6. Helmut_S


    Feb 12, 2012
    Well, yeah, I always clean 'em, sharpen & oil 'em a bit. The pic where it's lying next to the partially chopped log was after using it, though. This wood is so dry, it really doesn't leave any residue. Is why I said it feels like hard plastic...
  7. Fourgates


    Oct 24, 2011
    Great review Helmut_S. Need to post some pics of the CAK with the FJ!
  8. Komitadjie


    May 31, 2011
    Wonder what knife scales out of that stuff would look like... :D
  9. bemo


    Oct 19, 2006
    I was thinking the same thing.
  10. Helmut_S


    Feb 12, 2012
    For a small fee I can send you all pieces of wood - root or limb :D
  11. JayGoliath


    Mar 27, 2010
    Non pun intended but perhaps you should compare them side by side with the same size of saplings and frequency of application (chopping, slicing and etc).
    That way you could get the pros and cons on the object of experiment.

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