The Mike One is the latest folder from Pohl Force’s “Euro Ops Division”. It has many similarities to Deitmar Pohl’s first E.O.D. folder, the Foxtrott and fills a gap for a smaller, easier to carry knife in the line. Although scaled down, it still embodies the robust feature set and build quality of its larger sister products. While the design will be familiar to people who have been following the company’s latest offerings, the Mike One uses a different steel and has a relatively classic blade pattern. Like the Foxtrott, the Mike One also has a fixed blade version called the November One. As with all E.O.D. knives, the manufacturing is handled by LionSteel in Maniago, Italy. This version has a black PVD coated blade and the “Survival” designation. It is also available with a stone-washed finish as the “Outdoor”.
The Mike One has a drop point profile. At .197″ (5 mm) and 3.74″ (95 mm) long the blade is very stout. A high flat grind has been used in order to produce a keen edge that is finished with a secondary bevel. There is a long, narrow swedge along the spine for improved penetrating cuts. The geometry finds a nice balance between strength and efficient cutting, erring on the side of durability.
The handle of the knife has a closed back construction. One side is a thick slab of G10 that also makes up the back-spacer. The other side is titanium and includes the lock. Torx bolts along with two hollow over sized fasteners hold things together. The large pommel and pivot bolts are hollow allowing for a standard or “D” lanyard. The heads have a wide slot for easy adjustment with a flat head screwdriver or at-hand items like a coin.
The steel, Niolox, is unique in that it incorporates nobium. This element is used in alloys for improved grain refinement and increased ease of harden-ability. While nobium steels were pioneered in the combined aerospace and refectory industries, they have also found their way into cutlery due to excellent cutting and maintenance properties. As a stainless, Niolox also offers corrosion resistance. The heat treat rests at 59 HRC.
Deploying the blade is achieved by a thumb-disc that is recessed into the blade’s spine. The edges are jimped for a positive purchase and easy one handed opening. Pohl Force also offers a version of the knife without the thumb-disc for places that legally require the knife to be opened with two hands. This version is called the Mike Two.
When open the blade is held by an integral titanium frame lock. As to be expected the lock-up is solid and without play in any direction. For added security the locking leaf utilizes LionSteel’s proprietary RotoBlock safety. This consists of a disc that manually turns, cinching down on the lock arm when the knife is open. It effectively prevents any movement ensuring that the knife cannot fold under heavy use. When the RotoBlock is disengaged it serves double duty as an over-travel stop. This guards the lock arm from hyper-extending when unlocking the knife, protecting the spring integrity. A torx fastener at the center can adjust the resistance required to rotate the safety while three ridges around the circumference help to work the mechanism. While I generally avoid added safeties on folders, the RotoBlock is an elegant solution to two issues that, because of its adjust-ability is a welcome addition.
The knife’s ergonomic features begin before the hilt with a deep scallop on the spine and corresponding finger-groove. These provide a forward “choked-up” grip for controlled manipulation of the blade. Moving on to the handle, there is another thumb groove for a standard position.
The handle’s inside edge has two distinct scallops separated by a ridge that sits between your middle and index fingers. They add traction without feeling intrusive. A dip downward before the blade and at the pommel prevents slipping in either direction. The handle’s back is curved to comfortable nest agains your palm. For a reverse grip there is a jimped flat for thumb placement. Both sides of the handle have a heavy corrugated texture for traction in all-conditions that also add to the knife’s unique appearance.
For carry the Mike One has a reversible, tip-up pocket clip. The tension is good and it doesn’t feel intrusive in use. Pohl Force also offers two carry accessories : a leather pancake style sheath and a kydex sheath. Both options hold the knife in the folded position. The leather sheath has offset belt loops that angle the handle forward for easy drawing while the kydex version uses a Tech-Lok attachment system.
Once again Pohl Force has put out another comprehensive knife with the Mike One. Producing a smaller, EDC suitable knife with a classic blade pattern and all the modern features is a pragmatic addition to the Euro Ops Division line up. The tough build, premium materials and exceptional fit and finish should appeal to collectors and users alike. The quality blade steel and utility driven profile along with the unique yet effective handle will excel at a variety of tasks. The package is rounded out with several carry methods that will suit most user preferences. This knife would be a solid choice for anyone who is interested in a hard-use yet compact folder for sport, utility or professional use. The Mike One ships in a well made nylon pouch along with an elastic lanyard.
If you are considering purchasing the Pohl Force Mike One, please consider our affiliate sponsor BladeHQ.
Overall length: 8.66″ (220 mm)
Weight: 5.64 oz (160 g)
Length: 3.74″ (95 mm)
Thickness: .197″ (5 mm)
Steel: Niolox, 59 HRC
Finish: PVD coating, also available in stone wash
Length 4.92″ (125mm)
G-10 (show side and back-spacer) and 6Al4V titanium (lock side)
Frame Lock with RotoBlock safety
Stainless tip up reversible pocket clip
Lanyard and nylon pouch included
Made in Maniago, Italy