I was in the market for a light, well made, low profile fixed blade. I wanted something I could EDC, take on hikes, and that was tough enough to perform tasks larger knifes might, like making fires and dressing animals if I ever needed it to.
I was about to pull the trigger on a Spartan Enyo when I received the email saying the GiantMouse GMF1-F was back in stock. I’ve been wanting this knife for months, and I couldn’t stop myself. I bought one as soon as I could.
GiantMouse knives are made in Italy, the product of a collaboration between Danish knifemakers and designers Jens Anso, Jesper Voxnaes, and American businessman Jim Wirth. They respond to emails quickly and have good customer service. Despite being made in Italy, they ship from California.
Their knives are produced in limited runs of only 400 pieces. A quarter of those are “special versions” and marked as such with their Pirate Mouse logo. After the 400 pieces are made, the design is discontinued.
As you can imagine, this creates a demand for each of their knives, and makes them popular among collectors.
The GiantMouse GMF1-F
The knife has a unique design. It is small, with a sheepsfoot blade and a 3-finger hold. It has jimping in all the right places, and if you add a paracord lanyard, your pinky can get in on the fun too. They don’t offer scales or kydex sheath options, but you can find some aftermarket ones if you google hard enough. They offer the same design in 4mm thick Elmax and N690 steel, but the GMF1-F comes in 5mm of M390. M390 is a premium knife steel. It holds an edge very well, resists corrosion, and is tough. The tradeoff is you may have a hard time sharpening it.
Check out Blade HQ’s Knife Steel comparison for a look at how M390 stacks up against other steels.
I never wanted to be a steel snob, but I have bought enough knives with cheap steel to know dull knives really piss me off. Cleaning game with a dull knife is enough to make anyone crazy. The knife blade does not show a number or steel type. Is it sharp? You betcha. A quick swipe completely removed a 2” patch of hair from my left arm.
I honestly didn’t expect this knife to be razor sharp. Now I have a stupid looking bald spot. On the upside, I’ll save money on razor blades. The knife sports a flat grind, a perfect choice for a blade this size. I love flat grinds. They’re simple, they look good, and they make a great slicer. The leather sheath is handmade and elegant. It fits on your belt or disappears in your pocket. Paired with a kydex sheath your carry options are many. This works as a boot knife, a neck knife, IWB, or one of my favorites: upside down from a backpack strap. This knife will run you $135 and the kydex sheath (this one is from Bayou Custom Sheaths), was $30.
What is this knife good for?
EDC – This knife was made for everyday carry. Its small, ergonomic, and sweet looking. The leather sheath has a small footprint. Its size and shape aren’t intimidating, so you could whip this out to open beef jerky or skittles without scaring your mother-in-law or coworkers.
Backpacking – If you count ounces, you’ll be happy with this knife. I’m no Joseph Makatozi, but I’ve put in some miles and I’ve had some adventures get a little hairy. I hate to say it, because I LOVE knives, but I have never needed a knife for anything other than opening a Mountain House meal. That said, it’s an item I will gladly carry no matter what. This would be a great knife to carry hiking. I’m not sure if it’s because of the finish or if the spine is too rounded, but I can’t get it to throw a spark from my fire steel. My Spyderco, Mora, and Bark River don’t have any issue making sparks. This isn’t a huge deal because it came with a striker, but just something to consider. It would probably throw a spark if I used the cutting edge, but the thought makes me cringe.
Defense – I think a defensive knife should have a ring for your finger. This blade is pretty short for defense, but its wicked sharp. It wouldn’t be my first choice, but in the right hands, it’s better than nothing. The place this knife shines is concealability. Its short handle limits grip options. If you’re looking for a strictly defensive knife, I would look elsewhere.
Survival/Bushcraft – A large knife can do everything a small knife can, but a small knife can’t do everything a large knife can. This may perform some smaller tasks and would be well paired with a larger knife. You won’t be batoning any thick wood, but you could definitely make feather sticks. I think this would be great for fine tasks such as dressing squirrels and rabbits and whittling on sticks for traps and snares.
Carrying this knife is a delight. It disappears in my pocket and on my belt. Its sharp, looks nice, and it’s easy to wield.
If you’re looking for a small EDC fixed blade, this may be a perfect piece for your collection.