Benchmade 581 Barrage Review

This 581 Barrage Benchmade knife (from the Barrage Series) is not your typical knife because of its size and blade. The blade of the 581 Barrage is made from an exotic steel called M390. This steel is often used on surgical equipment and that should give you a good idea on the kind of quality it has. It is sometimes called a super steel because it combines superb edge retention with high level of resistance against corrosion and normal wear which is also why it takes a bit of patience and skill though when it comes to sharpening. But if you have the skill necessary, many agrees that the Austria’s Bohler M390 holds an edge better than Crucible’s S30V. The 581 Barrage comes with a drop point blade with a plain edge that makes it perfect for pretty much any job there is. The blade is 3.6 inches long which is a lot as far as everyday carry knives are concerned but it also makes it a great tool for a lot more than opening envelopes and Fedex boxes in the office.

581 Barrage Benchmade




The 581 Barrage has Benchmade’s patented opening and locking mechanism called AXIS Assist that allows you to open and lock the blade in place with virtually no effort at all. When fully opened, the 581 has absolutely no blade play even when applied with lateral or vertical force. A small steel bar extends on both sides of the axis which locks the blade in place, much like a deadbolt. Definitely one of the very best locking mechanisms available today.


The handle is made of aluminum and sports G10 scales with finger indents machined into it to improve grip and weight. The smooth ergonomic shape and material of the handle merges a tactical look with a gentleman’s feel. The shape of the handle allows you to have a comfortable grip while making sure that you have full control on every stroke. The finger dents also makes it possible to handle this knife safely even when your hands are soaking wet. The handle is designed so well that you can retain a considerable control with normal and even reverse grip. The spring assisted opening can be a bit surprising at first because it opens very fast with a little push on the thumb stud. Single hand opening is just a breeze with the 581 Barrage and once opened, you can expect it to stay that way.




Overall Length: 8.35″
Blade Length: 3.60″
Blade Thickness: 0.12″
Blade Material: M390 Super Steel
Blade Style: Drop Point
Blade Grind: Hollow
Finish: Satin
Edge Type: Plain Handle
Length: 4.75″
Closed Length: 4.75″
Handle Thickness: 0.65″
Handle Material: G10
Frame/Liner: Aluminum
Weight: 5.20 oz.
Lock Type: AXIS-Assist
Country of Origin: USA



Much like a lot of Benchmade’s knife, the 581 Barrage is above the $100 mark which is quite justifiable considering the material and technology that comes into the knife. It comes it at 5.20 oz. which may be a bit heavy for some for an everyday carry knife but the heft should also give you an idea of the quality of the knife. It’s one of those knives that you will respect and definitely take care of, not only because of the price, but because you know that it will last a long time with just a bit of maintenance and that brings more bang for your buck. This Warren Osborne design knife is simply one of the very best in its price range and should definitely restore your faith on folding knives that are made in the United States. If you are looking for a great EDC knife that will not let you down, the 581 is definitely a great choice.