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Condor Golok

Posted by CliffStamp 
Condor Golok
March 06, 2013 07:30PM
Condor Golok :

-1/4" thick blade, tapers to 1/8" at the tip
-670 grams
-balance is about 1 3/4" in front of the grip
-1075 carbon steel
-52-54 HRC
-full tang

In short :

-poor initial sharpness
-fluid in wood with excellent penetration
-solid combination of weight and heft
-extreme durability
-high ease of sharpening

In short, the Condor Golok is a solid example of a medium sized blade for cutting woody vegetation. Of course a knife with a full primary grind would be more efficient how getting a full grind blade at this size at this price point is not trivial.

Review : [www.cliffstamp.com]

I am sending this blade out for a friend for extended use. I will update this after he has had it for a couple of years, but in short decent blade for the price with a few issues that are not that difficult to resolve.
Re: Condor Golok
March 06, 2013 08:07PM
I've noticed that this has been listed as a best selling item on several cutlery retail sites. It still looks like a good deal to me.
Re: Condor Golok
March 07, 2013 05:22AM
They used to be very inexpensive, like $20 a piece. Now I've checked they increased price quite a lot.
Re: Condor Golok
December 27, 2017 11:42AM
I decided to order one of these, it should be here on Friday.

The purpose of the knife is to be a shelter-building and fire-starting tool for camping in an environment where the most common woods are white pine, spruce, birch, fir, and aspen.

In looking at the available production blades at a decent price, and combined with Cliff's noted performance of the Condor, I decided to get this one. I think it should be a decent choice for the intended purpose. I was pretty close to getting the Parang instead, but being that Cliff had done quite a bit of work with the Golok I decided it was safer to pick that one.

I ended up paying $45 for it, I couldn't seem to find a better price/performance ratio than that. Considering that I already have some boiled linseed oil to use on the handle after I give it a good sanding, I think it's going to be a good tool for me. A bit too heavy for a trail clearing blade in the spring and summer, but for shelter-building and fire-starting it seems great.
Re: Condor Golok
December 27, 2017 06:46PM
I'll be interested in what you think of it Ryan. Seems like a good, multi-purpose chopper.


Chumgeyser on Youtube
E-nep throwing Brotherhood. Charter Member
Re: Condor Golok
December 28, 2017 04:26AM
I'll have to work with it on an assortment of different woods over a period of months, just so I'm familiar enough with it so that I can use it pretty efficiently when I'm out camping. I'll keep you posted, Chum. I got a Imacasa 14" bolo that's much thinner and lighter than the Golok for use as a trail clearing tool during spring and summer. The blades like this are things I'm familiar enough with so that I'll get the hang of it a lot faster than I did with the axe I have been working with.
Re: Condor Golok
January 02, 2018 07:18PM
Cliff noted that his example of the Golok had an edge angle of about 20 DPS at the base that changed to about 10 DPS at the tip. My example is 30 DPS at the base and 15 DPS at the tip. I took 5 measurements of the thickness and bevel length and used a micrometer to do it.

However, the last 0.025" of the edge along the entire length is heavily rounded, and the the rest of the bevel is lightly rounded. I'm going to do some work on it soon to flatten out the entire edge as best I can, and my suspicion is that this will increase the width of the bevels significantly without adding much to the edge thickness, which would lower the angle.

The plan right now is to cut off the apex and use a coarse India to flatten the edge until it's no longer reflecting light, then use a Naniwa SS 400 and 1000 to polish it smooth. The India was conditioned with SG alumina abrasives a few months back, it's still quite sharp and cuts quickly. The Naniwa stones were just flattened a couple weeks ago.

Just so that everyone can see the measurements I took before I alter the knife:

(Rounded to the nearest 0.001" )

[width across the blade x width of bevels = angle in DPS]


Very Tip: 0.122" x 0.215" = 16

Middle of Belly: 0.150" x 0.275" = 15

Behind the Belly, on the Flat: 0.180" x 0.250" = 20

Flat, Forward of the Base: 0.218" x 0.250" = 25

Very Base: 0.229" x 0.230" = 30


Note again that these are not the exact angles and that the angles are more acute at the top of the bevel and more obtuse at the apex.


I used a flat piece of wood to get a rough estimate of the apex angle by running the edge along the wood while raising the angle until it bit into the wood. The apex angle is about 40 DPS for the entire blade length.

This profile is on the high side of extreme in regards to durability. Being that there's no primary grind the edge is quite thick, and combined with an obtuse edge angle that has a fairly strong convex, it's my guess that this current profile would be nearly invulnerable to any kind of woodwork, though the cutting ability would be proportionately low as well.
Re: Condor Golok
January 04, 2018 07:11AM
Quote
Ryan Nafe

The plan right now is to cut off the apex and use a coarse India to flatten the edge until it's no longer reflecting light, then use a Naniwa SS 400 and 1000 to polish it smooth.

Well it turns out that that isn't nearly as easy as it seems in principle. I just don't have the same control over a blade of this size that I do with a smaller one, even a 10" Bowie is easier to work on. The variable angle is also a hard thing to deal with. I am basically going to have to buy a belt sander or outsource the grinding to someone else.

--

I picked up two other blades to compare to the Golok, a Condor Australian Army Machete and an Imacasa 14" round-tipped bolo:

[www.machetespecialists.com]

[www.machetespecialists.com]


My thought right now is that I would like to have the edge angle of all three of the knives be the same for comparison's sake, and I'm thinking that 12 DPS across the entire length of the edge would be good. Could you guys advise me on an angle that would be good for wood chopping? 12 DPS sounds to me like a good mixture of cutting ability and durability, but I'm not sure.
Re: Condor Golok
January 04, 2018 07:15AM
12dps seems slightly low to me if you're not sure of the steel...well, I take that back...Cliff has recommended to me 12dps at aroudn .055 thick behind the edge and then you can go from there, thinning it or raising the edge angle based on what you find.

I've found 15dps at .035 (another Cliff recommendation) pretty indestructible minus wicked knots and nails. But it's also not a super cutter either...it's not optimized for chopping that is...it is a notch below with durability in mind.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________

Always in search of a good choppa'
Re: Condor Golok
January 04, 2018 09:38AM
C Amber, I was just thinking about a simple edge angle change without adding a primary grind for right now. But if I was to add a primary grind then I would probably lean a little more towards durability than pure cutting ability, just for the sake of allowing some room for error when limbing and splitting.


Part of the reason I chose these three blades specifically was because they're all made with the same steel, all have only an edge bevel with no primary grind, and all are distal tapered to a similar degree, just on different stock thicknesses.
Re: Condor Golok
January 04, 2018 02:53PM
Then I would go with 12 dps and if you get damage just add a 15dps side on top of it. It would provide you with a nice relief bevel for keeping the edge thinner then.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________

Always in search of a good choppa'
Re: Condor Golok
January 04, 2018 04:54PM
Quote
C Amber
Then I would go with 12 dps and if you get damage just add a 15dps side on top of it. It would provide you with a nice relief bevel for keeping the edge thinner then.

That seems like a decent idea. It's similar to what Cliff has said with regards to zero grinds: Do a zero grind, and just explore where it gets damaged. Then adjust the durability as you discover where you need it to be.

Thanks. I might even start out lower than 12 degrees, maybe 8 or 10.
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