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- Last updated: 22/03/2017
Helle Knives are, without doubt, amongst the most respected and desirable brands of handmade blades available. So, when they launch new models, or slightly modify timetested favourites, they’re always worthy of investigation. The trio here featured – the Helle Fjellbekk, Gaupe and Fjellkniven stay true to the company’s base design for most of their other fixed blade knives – particularly in the fact all are manufactured from their patented triple Laminated Stainless Steel. They are full tang in construction, come supplied with genuine hand stitched leather sheaths with belt loops and are very attractively packaged to include a generously sized cleaning cloth. Incidentally, the wooden handles (except on the Fjellbekk) are crafted from the company’s seemingly favoured and very cosmetically appealing polished Curly Birch wood.
First up is the Fjellbekk. Measuring 8.5-inches in overall length, with a blade length of four-inches, this solid knife fits very naturally into your hold. The relatively slim handle is made from Merbau wood, which in relation to Helle knives that have Curley Birch handles, cosmetically tends to look a tad bland. However, the material used for the handle is as practical as the design itself, as a large finger choil has been integrated into the styling to prevent your fingers slipping forward in use. Also, both handle and blade have quite a deep side profile, making this a very workmanlike and easy blade to use. Another nice touch is the leather sheath that accompanies this model has a press-stud fasten down safety strap.
Next up is the Gaupe and Fjellkniven. I’m pairing these together, as both are very similar in both overall construction and handle design – the major difference being length and depth of blade. The former has an overall length of 8.7-inches and a blade length of 4.2-inches – alternatively the smaller and slimmer profile Fjellkniven measures 8.25-inches in overall length with a blade length of four-inches.
Both handles are very ergonomically crafted from Curly Birch and feel equally as good in the hold as they do cosmetically. It’s when shown side-by-side that you clearly notice the difference in blade length and profile, as the Gaupe has a much deeper and slightly longer blade than the Fjellkniven. Also, the latter has a Stainless Steel insert at the base of the blade where it enters the handle for added strength. On both models the end of the tang can be seen to pass through the handle, where it’s made into a small pommel being ‘hammered over’ a brass retaining collar affording extra strength and rigidity.
On reflection, you could say the Fjellbekk will appeal to those whose main requirement is for a no-nonsense, no-frills, practically designed ‘heavy duty’ fixed blade knife that offers a very strong blade and a very secure handle to hold. The Gaupe and Fjellkniven both closely follow a similar design layout, both cosmetically and in build to others already available in Helle’s now very comprehensive range of sheath knives. However, they do still have their own individual handling characteristics, which in my opinion make them well worthy of any hunter or outdoorsman’s consideration.