Guns and Gear

Barlow Pattern Makes Appearance in Real Steel’s 2023 Lineup

Real Steel Knives has decided to try its hand at the venerable Barlow pattern with an incoming knife, available for preorder now. The aptly named Real Barlow does the “classic design, modern materials” thing, with some added customization opens as well.

We all know the barlow, we all love the barlow (if you don’t love the barlow, well, we don’t know what to tell ya. Maybe the knife game isn’t your bag). One of the definitive single blade jack knife patterns, the centuries-old design has been carried, used, and adored for many years, in many forms. It’s a common starting point for those getting into the slipjoint scene, as well as makers and manufacturers looking to expand their design repertoire by taking a crack at the classics.

That’s presumably what motivated Real Steel on the Real Barlow. Rather than turn to one of their collaborators for this one, they gave this assignment to their in-house crew. And as is common with traditional/slipjoint-style designs, they came up with two different blade shapes for the Real Barlow: clip or drop point. At 2.76 inches long in either configuration, the Real Barlow is a real obvious choice for everyday carry; the set it and forget it kind of knife that has been a staple of modern life way before the modern knife world even existed.

Blade steel is N690Co – a steel that, while still popping up here and there, isn’t as common a sight as it was, say, five or six years ago. Which is a shame because, even in the expansive entry-level steel market of today, it’s a standout; an intuitive mix of edge retention, stain resistance, and easy sharpenability that fits everyday carry needs to a T.

The bolster on this modern barlow is a faux bolster, cut into the G-10 handle scales above the textured faux covers. These handles are a feature in and of themselves, actually; although you can only order the Real Barlow in either white or black scales, other scale colors are available on their own and, if you preorder the knife, a second set is included free.

Speaking of that preorder period: you have through June 30th to get in on this one at the introductory price, with the free scales.

Knife in Featured Image: Real Steel Real Barlow


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