With thousands of miles under his belt, Rubicon 3’s Bruce Jacobs knows a thing or two about safety kit. Here, he reviews the Wichard Rescue Knife
So many things can go wrong so quickly on a boat that most professional sailors always keep a knife close to hand. Which knife is a highly personal a choice, but the Wichard Rescue Knife is a real winner for me.
The 72mm round tipped N680 stainless blade is highly corrosion resistant which is key in a salty environment, even if tougher (and more expensive) metals would keep an edge better. We’re not expecting to use this knife often, so staying sharp is not an issue.
For me, a rescue knife should never be a folding one, as trying to unfold it in a crisis can cause serious delays, so I like the rigid blade on the Wichard. It has a hard plastic sheath that can be attached to the boat or crew, and the knife locks into the sheath with a lever the length of the handle that is easy to release even with a gloved, frozen hand.
The serrated blade chops through rope and tethers in seconds and the 12mm shackle key along the top, blunt edge of the knife is a useful addition.
My only slight issue is that the handle was maybe an inch too short for my hand. You’re paying for the robust design and quality of stainless steel, but that’ll seem cheap if you ever need to use it in an emergency.
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A great knife to keep onboard either as a crew member or in an easily reached spot on your boat. It might not stay as sharp as other more expensive metals, but as a safety knife, the expectation is not to use it all that often.