Viper Odino designed by Jesper Voxnaes

The Viper ODINO designed by Jesper Voxnaes

Jesper Voxnaes’ designs immediately hit a note with me after reviewing his Böker kitchen knife collaboration from the company’s Saga Series. My interest was furthered once being able to handle his customs at the Blade Show. Jesper’s designs have a stylish aesthetic that attentively balances form and function with distinctive results.  As such, the demand for his custom designs, far outweighs supply. For this reason, it was great to see Viper partnering with the designer to release a folder. Having checked out many Viper knives in the past, I knew to expect a quality and high value product.

 

 

Odino, is the Italian translation for Odin, the Norse God. A fitting name for a Scandinavian designed, Italian produced knife. Viper is also manufacturing a Vox fixed blade design, the Borr named after Odin’s father.

This knife is a medium sized folder with an overall length of 7.25”. Weights vary from the lightweight 4.41 oz carbon fiber and 4.58 oz G10 editions, to the 5.47oz full Ti model. Although fairly short, it has a broad footprint giving the knife a substantial, durable feel in use.

ODINO in Carbon Fiber and Titanium

The 3” blade on the Odino could be considered a modified drop or clip point pattern. I personally find it has more of a drop point feel to it, largely because of the lack of a concave clip-shape coupled with the blade’s broadness. Regardless, it should probably be classified as a clip, due to the change in angle toward the tip mid spine.

Viper ODINO in Titanium

The grind is a high flat. Because of the substantial 1.25” (maximum) blade width, the material is ground quite thin across the primary bevel. This is finished with a keen secondary edge. Overall the geometry makes for an excellent slicer with a good amount of straight cutting surface, belly and an acute enough tip for all around functionality.

ODINO N690Co Blade
A detail of the ODINOs excellent, high flat grind.

The steel used is Austrian company Böhler Uddeholm’s N690Co. Böhler classifies the product as a cutlery grade steel. Its designation is reflected in its widespread adoption from European knife manufacturers such as Extrema Ratio, Fox Cutlery and this company to name a few.

The chemical composition of N690Co is :

C Si Mn Cr Mo V Co
1.08 0.40 0.40 17.30 1.10 0.10 1.50

Notable to cutlery applications are N690Co’s high Carbon content with the addition of Vanadium and Cobalt for hardness and edge retention. Another great feature is that the Chromium content is 3.3% higher than the 14% necessary to sit the steel in the stainless category. This is further amplified by the 1.10% addition of Molybdenum, making for above average corrosion resistance. While not a powder metal “Super Steel”, N690 is still a solid blade material that offers a practical blend of affordability and performance. The steel also machines well, as illustrated in the cleanly executed stone wash and satin finishes that are available in this model.

ODINO by Jesper Voxnaes

For deployment the Odino uses an oval thumb slot. It is easy to access from both sides due to a cut away in the handle scales. The pivot has thrust bearings that sit in a recessed slot milled into the tang and against raced washers on the scale side. The action is effortless allowing the knife to be easily opened with reliability. While adding smoothness, bearings do a great job negating lateral slack along the pivot’s travel.

When open the blade is held firmly in place by a titanium frame lock that seats with authority. Although the lock arm isn’t finished with a steel insert, there’s no stickiness. Quite often the difference in hardness between the softer titanium lock face and the hardened blade’s, can cause binding. The effect can be worsened by rough surfaces and/or bad lock geometry. Fortunately the Odino avoids these pitfalls and functions perfectly. Aside from the steel insert, there isn’t an over-travel stop feature. I don’t really feel either way about this because I’ve never damaged a frame lock by hyper-extending it. I can say that I’d prefer a lower price point than added features in the case of this knife, since the lock works great as-is.

ODINO Titanium Frame Lock
A detail of the ODINO’s lock geometry.

The handle is 4.25” and will allow for a full four finger grip for most people. The cut-away that provides access to the opening thumb hole also serves to lock your index finger in place. Holding the knife in this position has the blade a fair distance away from your hand. For more control you can leverage the flat area after the finger groove, placing your middle finger in the cut-away. During use I tend to hold the knife this way unless I’m speeding through cuts, where being close to the heel of the grind could be a bad idea. The back of the handle has an overall, convex sloping shape that nests comfortable against your palm. While the back spacer slightly protrudes from the bulk of the grip, it doesn’t have any significant presence when in use. Although the component has some jimping on it, I feel like it’s slightly more aesthetic than functional.  On the carbon fiber and G10 models, the back spacer is anodized blue.

ODINO Handles

For carry there’s a tip up pocket clip that’s reversible for left or right hand carry. It’s made from 420 sheet stock and has been creatively bend-formed. I really like the attachment point. Its mortise and tenon like construction seats part of the clip into a slot in the handle, preventing rotation. Due to this, only one fastener is required to attach it. The spring has a split shape and therefore, somewhat light tension. While having enough to hold the knife in place, some people might prefer tighter retention. Personally I don’t mind the tension but would like it if the clip sat a little less proud. I did notice it quite a bit when cutting and ended up removing it since I usually don’t clip my knives in my pockets anyway. On the note of carry, I really appreciate the large lanyard slot included in the back-spacer which is what I’ll be using to get the Odino out of my pocket.

Viper Odino Back Spacer
A detail of the Odino’s blue anodized back spacer.

All in, I really appreciate this design. The over all shape is well resolved when the knife is both open and closed. I particularly enjoy Jesper’s use of distinct, well placed hard angles, creating confident shapes that don’t interfere with use. The detailed chamfering, especially seen around the handle fasteners is great. At first glance the design is easy to identify and comprehend. On closer inspection there are enough details to reflect on and admire. From a manufacturing perspective Viper has done an excellent job tying up all of the components. Their partnership with Jesper Voxnaes has delivered an exceptional, usable knife at a fair asking price.

If you are looking to purchase the Viper Odino, please consider our affiliate GP Knives. Purchases through affiliates directly go into produce more reviews for the site.

For more information on Vox Knives please visit www.voxknives.com

Viper ODINO

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The Edge Observer

The Edge Observer is a site dedicated to knife reviews, primarily focusing on folding knives.

16 thoughts on “Viper Odino designed by Jesper Voxnaes

    1. It would be a great addition to any collection! Thanks for checking out the review and your comment!!

  1. Wow- love the fit&finish and handle design. Would be perfect mated to a tanto blade :p

    The carbon-fiber/Titanium has my name on it… what is approx retail, and can I order it from a canadian retailer?

  2. This knife looks like a rip-off copy of Jens Anso’s Boker Minos from a couple of years ago- same blade length of 3″ and same thickness of 0,15; same steel Bo690Co, almost same thickness for an all-titanium handle… I do own Minos and what an amazing knife that is. Have not seen a mid-size folder comparable to Minos in terms of it’s micro-kukri ergonomics, that is until now. Of course, like with anything, there is a fine line between “inspired” and a simple rip-off, but since Minos was first, and this Odino looks so similar, even in price (!) – would be great if you can run a direct comparison of the two knives. 
    Regards

  3. I just double-checked- the blade outline of this knife is identical to Boker Minos, (but not the grind-I actually do prefer the grind of Minos), the outline of the top and the back of the handle is also identical! Its length is identical. It has the same triple-cut for frame-lock. Both Anso and Voxnaes are Scandinavian designers, but Anso’s Minos was first, and, of course, Jens Anso is the more famed designer of greater repute, and almost every knife-maker in the world, including Voxnaes, are aware of Anso’s work. 
    Is this the case of one coincidence too many? Plagiarism should be shameful, not endorsed, especially since your website reviewed Minos as well!

    1. I own both and while I see some similarities I’d have to disagree that it’s a rip-off. In fact I’d have to say that they are different knives in many respects. Opening method, handle finishes, clips etc. The point of the steel used is moot since many European made knives use N690co. Also, Jens Ansø and Jesper Voxnaes are friends who, for the last few years at Blade have exhibited side by side. I’m sure that they have some influence on each others work at times but I would argue they maintain different design identities. Lastly Yory, saying that I shamefully endorse plagiarism by reviewing this knife is total BS and unfounded.

  4. Firstly, thank you for reply. I did not say that you are endorsing plagiarism. I implied you might be by endorsing a knife that has such an uncanny similarity. Yes, one knife has a hole where another has a thumb stud. Yes, handle finishes are a bit different- Minis has a CNC-cut decoration, while this one’s plain. There is a lanyard hole and backspaces difference too. All these are rather surface-thin variation that happen in some cases within same model run for many a maker, and manufacturer (like Boker, for example, with their Leopard 3…) I did not know the designers were friends. All I noticed that, fundamentally, the knives were very similar, and both sell for about $200. As I suggested- would be great if you could do a direct comparison. As for designers being friends – not weird in itself, but I guess I reacted to the fact that NO ONE – not one reviewer, either on BladeHQ, here, or elsewhere noted the similarity… Ah, yes, no thumbhole… Do compare the grinds, though, as the grinds actually do matter. Thanks.

  5. At first glance, this made me think of the techno and I wondered why you didn’t make a comparison in your review. But after I looked a little closer, I think I’m seeing just how different the design is. Since it has an index finger cutout and lacks the techno’s distinct thumb ramp, I would imagine the ergos are completely different.

    Eh, whatever, all that was really an excuse just to post and say I’m glad to see a new review up! It’s been a little while. Keep em coming! And awesome video, as usual.

    1. A fair amount of people are comparing the Techno to this knife. I pulled both of them out and yes, they are very different in overall scale, ergonomics and function. I think that it’s that they are both broad patterns that draws the connection. Thanks for reading the review!

  6. One more thought- the similarity with Minos is evident because Minos is not a normal run-of-the mill knife in terms of ergonomics, with its blade-edge forward of fingers when properly gripped (result of a semi-pistol grip, if you will), which, by the looks of it, this knife shares. I think Minos was not a best-seller. Is this a second attempt -a reworking of the same ideas to better appeal to current market? I admit – I liked the look of this knife- that is why I wanted to hear some thoughts by a reviewer, especially if you own both knives, as to avoid unnecessary duplication. In any case- I do like your reviews and website. Otherwise, I would not have bothered to write a comment.
    So, keep doing good work. Even your first reply already gave me some food for thought…

    1. Congrats! The Odino is awesome as is the designer and manufacturer. Let me know what you think when you get it!

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