Southern Grind Bad Monkey knives

Discussion in 'Reviews' started by GaryMc, Sep 28, 2016.

  1. GaryMc

    GaryMc Member

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    This was a 2-part post in my personal thread here on the ESEE forum. The first part covers me changing out some scales on 3 of the 5 Southern Grind Bad Monkeys I own. The second part is the real review done after that exercise and WHY I have a love/hate relationship with what I consider an almost perfect folder but there are a couple of flaws that I now think can be corrected making these near perfect knives.

    PART 1

    Southern Grind Bad Monkeys

    Love these knives overall with some exceptions I'll cover in Part 2 but there were things about 2 of the 5 I own I didn't care for so I spent some time swapping out scales today. The Orange and OD green models were not changed. I started the day with 5 Bad Monkeys, ended it with 4 complete ones.


    I had an early Tanto version black blade BM with Emerson Wave feature and black carbon fiber scales that I've posted in EDC posts before that was rarely carried as I hated those scales, they are just not comfortable, so I moved my coyote scales that I love from a drop point satin blade BM to that black Tanto with Emerson Wave, now I love absolutely this knife. Think it now looks just totally bad!

    The blue scales were on a regular black non Emerson wave Tanto with serrated edges and an advertising logo on the back, this was a super limited rare edition done for some company. This knife has only been in maybe one EDC post before. I loved the blue scales but really hated the serrated blade and the advertising logo so it was getting little to no carry time. The blue scales quite frankly did not look good with the black blade either. I moved the blue scales to the satin drop point knife that had the coyote scales and now I have another completed knife I'm absolutely loving and think it is now just a gorgeous knife, maybe the prettiest I own. I also checked the blue scales to see if they were cerakoted as the last owner thought they might be, they are not, they are real deal blue Southern Grind Bad Monkey G10 scales I've never seen on another Bad Monkey.

    So I may have dropped from 5 to 4, but I now have 4 I love instead of 3 so I'm better off and still have all the parts to put the 5th one back together but that's another story that will come in a post later this evening.


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    PART 2

    Southern Grind Bad Monkeys (continued)

    Again, I love Southern Grind Bad Monkey knives, I've owned 3 of mine for several years now. They are huge with a 4" blade that comes razor sharp and maintains that edge as good or better than anything else I own. They ride great, near perfect in the pocket for a large knife with G10 scales on both sides that slide in and out of your pocket easily. Perfect balance and feel in your hand. Love the short pocket clip, best out there in my opinion. They come perfectly centered and the quality is awesome, almost a perfect knife in my opinion particularly if you don't take your knives apart regularly. So wait for it.............the "but" part.

    The "but" part is their proprietary hardware (screws)!!!!!!! They corrected the first issue early on in that the pivot screw took a proprietary tool to take it apart. Soon after they started making them, they added a torx slot to the back pivot as seen in this photo so that part they corrected. The original tool for this was horrible, I've broken 2 of them now and they aren't cheap. Imagine that pivot screw below with no torx and trying to crank it off with something that hits the 4 edge slots, original design was horrible, the tools will break, and you will screw your scales up if not careful.

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    The frame screws are even worse, they require a tool that basically has 2 pins on the end of it that slide into pin slots in the screws. Horrible horrible horrible design!!!!!! Do they look cool, well sure they do. Do they absolutely suck, YES. I've now broken four of these tools and need to order a few more at $12.00 a pop which sucks even further!!!!!!! I figured out today you can use the torx screws they use to hold on the pocket clip in their place so in the photo below you can see 2 of those 3 pocket clip screws from the fifth SG BM I didn't put back together. The tool again broke as I had 3 screws left to go on the coyote Tanto in the post above to get it together, I was furious.

    Again you can see 2 of the pocket clip torx screws I used below and one of the old SG frame screws. Why they didn't just use Torx everywhere I have no clue as these are a perfect fit. Southern Grind really needs to wake up and start using hardware most people have tools to work on not this proprietary JUNK, yes I said it JUNK. That's what the frustration of tools that break easily will do to you!!!!!!

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    OK, I love these knives, well maybe love/hate, so what to do. Well I plan to find Torx screws to replace all the frame proprietary screws on all these knives. I think with that done, these will be near perfect large folders.

    Anyone know where I can buy those screws in both black and stainless now????????
     
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  2. Bcamos

    Bcamos Member

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    Yeah when working on the GAW knife a few years ago, I broke the handle screw tool. It's basically just a bit with two small pins pushed into the top. They don't go very far into the bit, so they just pop out. If the bits were machined with the spanner heads it would be a different story, or even if they were pushed in further. But they're very shallow, so they break. Not a good design.

    Most people don't know this about their warranty though, it's still covered if you refinish the blade. So if you acid wash it, or black wash it, or coat it with something - SG will still cover it.
     
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  3. GaryMc

    GaryMc Member

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    @Bcamos They need to just change to Torx, that has to impact repeat sales at some point. Good to know on the blade warranty so thank you Sir!!!! I'd like to do the OD one I have like the GAW knife, that knife was really sweet!!!!! Ya'll did a great job on it.
     
  4. CWB

    CWB Member

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    I have the black and the green g10. Super sweet knives
     
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  5. Bcamos

    Bcamos Member

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    Thank you! Let me know if you're ever interested and I'll give it the same treatment!
     
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  6. VolGrad

    VolGrad Member

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    The GAW knife was really sweet. In hindsight I should have kept that out of principle alone. I kind of feel like a dick for eventually selling it. In the end it was a bit too big for me for an EDC blade. It was a pretty solid knife though and was razor amazing sharp thanks to @Bcamos .
     
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  7. CWB

    CWB Member

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    You need to check out the Spider Monkey. It may be more the size you're looking for.
     
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  8. VolGrad

    VolGrad Member

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    I had one. I bought it at BLADE the year they came out - BLADE released just before they were available in stores. It was pretty cool. It felt very Benchmade to me though. That's not an insult - just an observation and perhaps opinion it was priced a little too high for what it was.
     
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  9. GaryMc

    GaryMc Member

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    Southern Grind Bad Monkey Tanto with Emerson Wave feature is now "perfection"!!!!

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    That perfection came in that now every Southern Grind proprietary screw has been replaced with torx head screws. Now I'm just waiting on torx screws to complete the other 3 conversions. Now I can say this one is truly a "Bad Monkey", something Southern Grind needs to do on their own.

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  10. JAD

    JAD Member

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    I bought the GAW knife from Volgrad. Man I wanted that knife bad.....until I got it. I never liked it for most of the reasons Gary cited. I couldn't work on it without the tools. It wasn't tuned to my liking and the knife just never appealed to me in my hand. Then I probably tried to sell it at least 3 different times and withdrew the sale everytime. Finally traded it. I'm glad to see Gary ended up with it. At least it has found a home that it is getting some attention.
     
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  11. GaryMc

    GaryMc Member

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    Wasn't me @JAD but I do know who has it. Great knives when you make the change I did.
     
  12. Tyler

    Tyler Member

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    Why do you say that the carbon fiber scales aren't as comfortable as the g10? What is the main difference? Thanks.
     
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  13. GaryMc

    GaryMc Member

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    @Tyler The G10 scales are sculpted as seen above. The carbon fiber scales are basically just a flat slab on either side with no sculpting so they just don't fit your hand quite as well. They are OK but nowhere near as nice for example as the Spider Monkey CF scales which are sculpted and more rounded off. Hope that helps.
     
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  14. VolGrad

    VolGrad Member

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    Who did end up with that knife? I knew at one time but have forgotten.
     
  15. Marty W

    Marty W Member

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    I'm proud to say I am the proud owner of the giveaway BM. I love it. I don't carry it often these days, but it is being well cared for. It is still in rotation, but I kinda baby it and my 0562 and 0456 are getting a little more attention. Southern Grind actually replaced all the hardware and "tuned" it up for me. It's excellent and all the members who worked on it did an excellent job.
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2016
  16. VolGrad

    VolGrad Member

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    Awesome. I think I knew you had it but had forgotten. I'm getting up in age and short on memory.
     
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  17. Bcamos

    Bcamos Member

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    Let me know if the blade or clip ever need to be refinished. Iv'e actually learned a lot since doing that knife and could probably put a much nicer acid wash on it now.
     
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  18. Marty W

    Marty W Member

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    Awesome. Definitely may take you up on that offer some time! I'll try to remember to add a recent pic of the knife when I get a chance. I'm working a Christmas outage and working around the clock right now.
     

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