Before we get started let me say this, I don't normally use a single word to describe a piece of gear in its entirety. More often my opinion would be delivered with "good because of..." or "I like these features for..." but rarely does something come into my hands that can truly be optimized with one solemn, powerful word. After my experience carrying, using, and testing the Boker Plus Dark Hollow for quite some time, the summary of my opinion comes back to one recurring word...excellence.
The dictionary defines excellence as "the quality of being outstanding or extremely good", and it's synonyms include "quality...brilliance...supremacy". I can assure you that after spending time with the Dark Hollow in hand, there is no denying that this knife is certainly an exhibition of excellence.
The Boker Plus Dark Hollow is actually the creation of a Missouri-based company, Sniper Bladeworks. Known for their precision construction and relentless quality, Sniper Bladeworks and Boker Plus have teamed up to create a more affordable, yet still top-tier, version of the Dark Hollow. I can assure you, they succeeded.
The first thing I noticed when I received the Dark Hollow was the box. Unlike most knives I've bought that are packaged in a rectangle of thin cardboard, the Dark Hollow arrived in a black hard case sporting a brilliant silver Boker Plus logo on the top. While slowly opening the DH case I felt like an action movie bank robber as they open the cracked safe. Inside the case rested the knife, a wrench for working on the DH, and maintenance instructions. After taking a moment to examine the paperwork, I put the Dark Hollow in hand. Studying the knife you'll find a robust titanium chassis and frame lock, an OD green G10 grip panel, and a 3.75" spear point blade.
The blade is, in my opinion, the most visually attractive piece of the Dark Hollow. It touts a 3" cutting edge, hollow grind, and a beautiful stonewashed finish. The blade material is 440c high carbon stainless steel, which is a very strong, hard steel and is very resistant to wear. That being said, it is important to note the second blade feature I mentioned, the edge. Having a hollow grind makes the Dark Hollow razor sharp; in fact, out of the box it is easily one of the sharpest knives I've seen, if not the sharpest. However, that hollow grind is not designed to be used on hard objects, such as a bushcraft/field survival knife, which seems contradictory due to the weight of the DH, but we'll talk about that in a bit. The Boker Plus DH is labeled as a "tactical" knife on their website and is designed to inflict offensive/defensive damage to soft targets...such as meat and flesh. This is certainly not to say that you cannot use the Dark Hollow as a survival knife, but you will most likely lose the edge rather quickly.
Coming back to the weight of the Dark Hollow, this knife is not only heavy-duty, it's downright heavy! Weighing in at 9.07 ounces, you are not likely to forget that it's in your pocket. I spent some time putting my DH into as many hands as I could just to see people's reactions and opinions. Although everyone I handed it to was instantly a fan, a large number of these people complained about the weight. Personally, the weight doesn't bother me at all when the knife is resting in my pocket, and I thoroughly enjoy the heft when it's in hand. After manually deploying the Dark Hollow - with a very noticeable "thunk" as the blade locks open - I feel as though I'm wearing a boxing glove with a blade attached to it.
The last thing worth mentioning is one of the most important for most consumers, the price. The Boker Plus Dark Hollow is a heavyweight knife at featherweight cost coming in at $159 on Boker's site. This is a mere fraction of the Sniper Bladeworks DH, which starts several hundred dollars higher. Having a competitive price point closes the deal - the Boker Plus DH is a must have!
By this point in the article you're probably curious as to what the knife has physically done to affirm our respect. In a short answer, the Dark Hollow has done it all - everything we've wanted and needed from it. In addition to its willingness to perform "routine" chores, this merciless blade has survived a battery of exams that were fueled solely by our interest in the question, "when will this thing quit?" For a firsthand look at the uncompromising creation of Boker Plus and Sniper Bladeworks, watch Tactiholics™ on YouTube very closely because the video is coming, and like the Dark Hollow's name implies, it's coming from the shadows.
...we never quit!