TILI Ultralight Review: How Good Is This Small Fixed Blade?

TILI Ultralight Review: How Good Is This Small Fixed Blade?
The TILI’s 1095 carbon steel blade is diff erentially hardened and boasts a wavy hamon.

The TILI Ultralight By Origin Handcrafted Goods Might Be Small But It Packs One Heck Of A Bite.

The TILI Ultralight by Origin Handcrafted Goods is a small fixed blade that can fit in your pocket like a pocketknife with no need to figure out how to open the blade or disengage a safety. Pull it clear of the pocket sheath and you’re ready to cut. Among the things I love about smaller fixed blades is that people don’t give you the evil stink eye when you use the knives in public.

Testing The Ultralight 

TILI Ultralight cutting paper
The TILI Ultralight handled slicing copy paper with ease.

I started with a simple paper slice using 20-pound bond copy paper. The TILI sliced very smoothly using both a draw cut and a push cut. The knife was controllable in making the width of the slices—I just had to move my fingers out of the way fast.

Next up: single-walled cardboard. The handle shape of the TILI Ultralight made for extremely controllable slices in the cardboard as well. I could hear the aggressive edge as it sliced. The edge is very fine and ideal for such a job.

Plastic board was next. There was a little more blade grab in this medium as the TILI’s blade bevel is short—around 3/8 of an inch. The full thickness of the blade engaged the plastic board quickly. It still made quick, clean cuts as fast as I could move my fingers.

The little fixed blade produced beautiful curly-cues in half-inch pine, producing nice, clean cuts. It was easy to control the depth and thickness of the curly-cues. The TILI Ultralight is great for making fire sticks and a handy little knife to put in a pack. It would be excellent at cleaning small game.

Slicing Through Challenges

TILI Ultralight cutting pine knott
The author drove the edge through a pine knot twice. He felt some micro chipping on the edge but it still cut great.

Skiving leather strips was next on the menu. The blade made a forceful crunching sound as it parted the 8-ounce leather. The small blade was controllable in making the slices thin. It favored skiving with the tip more than with the blade’s belly. This is a very sharp knife!

To push the fine edge more, I switched to 3/8-inch sisal rope. The TILI crunched to 125 cuts before my hand said “enough!” It’s hard to keep the pressure on a thin knife without your hand getting sore somewhere. The edge was still sharp and ready for more.

I switched to half-inch pine for some baton practice. The knife was easy to hold onto and it split the wood great. I even drove the edge through a knot twice. I felt some micro chipping on the edge but it still cut great. The steel might be a point too hard on the Rockwell hardness scale for heavy work. Keep the use to slicing and you won’t have any issues.

The TILI comes with a leather pouch sheath to protect the blade. I would put stainless steel pins in the holes at the end of the sheath to prevent accidental penetration as this knife is very pointy and razor sharp.

Bottom line: The TILI Ultralight is a handy knife that’s a perfect little backup blade for all-around use.

Changes I’d Make To The TILI Ultralight

I would add a couple of thumb notches on the blade and extra protection on the tip of the sheath to prevent blade penetration. (EDITOR’S NOTE: The latter is especially crucial if you carry the knife sheathed in your pocket.)

TILI Ultralight Specs

Blade Length: 2.38 inches
Blade Material: 1095 carbon steel
Blade Grind: Hollow
Heat Treat: Differentially Hardened with Hamon
Handle: Skeletonized Steel with hole for included leather lanyard
Weight: 2 ounces
Overall Length: 2.75 inches
Sheath: Black Veggie Tanned Leather
Weight with Sheath: 3 ounces
MSRP: $125

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