KAI Group’s Kershaw Knives has spun up a collaboration with Ernest Emerson and his resources. KAI’s upscale brand Zero Tolerance (think Nissan/Infiniti) also gets a turn. At SHOT Show 2014, ZT introduced its new Emerson collaborations, the models 0620CF and 0620.
The 0620CF, shown above, has a 3.6″ tanto blade of Böhler M390 powdered steel. The blade flats are stonewashed, while the bevels get a contrasting satin finish. A wave shaped feature or disk opens the blade. The pivot point appears to be substantial.
This ZT/Emerson is a titanium frame lock. Hardened steel inserts ensure the lock’s strength and longevity. The 0620CF’s left side scale is smooth carbon fiber; the right side’s titanium is bead blasted. There are a lot of cool finishes are going on in this knife.
Zero Tolerance’s 0620, shown below, diverges in materials. Its blade is DLC-coated ELMAX. Textured G-10 replaces the sibling’s CF scale. Both knives have a right/left tip up pocket clip. I have always disliked Emerson Knives’ right-handed-only clip bias. Left handers, and some of us Righties, want to carry their knife in the left side pocket. I am glad ZT is adding this as an option.
These knives are classic Emerson forms made at KAI’s Tualatin, Oregon factory. The MSRP for the CF version is $300. The blacked out G-10 knife is $250. And here’s where my fingernail rubs my scalp. For these prices, I can buy production Emerson knives. From Ernest Emerson’s company.
There is no doubt that the ZT Emersons will fairly reek of quality. ZT made the Blade Show 2013 Best in Show Knife, after all. I understand the Kershaw Emersons’ low price point offerings to the Everyman. But for Emerson money, I think many would stick with the originator. In any event, the ZT Emerson collaborations will be well worth the bucks in terms of fit and finish.