This Blade HQ Exclusive Bugout model features a satin 20CV blade, green titanium accents, and a gray G-10 handle.
In 2017, Benchmade shook the knife world with the release of the Bugout. It was the knife people didn't know they were searching for. It was simple, utilitarian, ergonomic, lightweight, had an ambidextrous lock and opener, and was made with quality materials. In the years since, the Bugout has become one of the best-selling knives in history. Benchmade truly made the Bugout a knife for everyone, and no collection is complete without one.
The Benchmade Bugout comes in two sizes and a multitude of colors, and has great aftermarket customization options as well.
No complaints. I knew what I was getting with this knife and it exceeded expectations. Perfect grind, precision centering, smooth to open and close, and super sharp 20cv. The green accents make it pop, but the white G10 is surprisingly really good-looking. My favorite new EDC.
Ignore the whiners; these are hands down the best versions of the Bugout you can buy right now, and I own all versions currently available. While the improved blade steel is nice, it's not necessarily something you will appreciate right away, but the G-10 scales are a noticable upgrade. They feel better in my hand than the standard scales and give the knife a more quality feel. I'd love to see them make these scales a standard feature on all Bugouts. Yes, you can get replacement scales from other places but I have some of them, and while they are an improvement over the standard plastic scales, they are not as nice as the scales on these Blade HQ editions. I own plenty of EDC knives, and the Bugout has always been a favorite, but the upgrades on this version push it right up near the top of my list.
I thought long and hard about whether I wanted to drop $200 on a bugout. Especially since I already have two others. But I figured this model won't be around forever so I should just do it. I am NOT disappointed. This knife is literally perfect (in my opinion of course). The textured G-10 scales are smooth yet just grippy enough, and much more solid feeling than the standard grivory scales. I haven't put it on a scale, but it's certainly heavier than a standard bugout, but still pleasantly lightweight. The action is flawless. Opens as smooth as you could want, and has all the drop-shutty goodness that makes for an excellent fidget-knife. As for the blade--20CV steel; enough said. Mine came with a perfectly centered blade, razor-sharp right out of the box, and the AXIS lock is smooth as can be (I currently have a bugout on its way to Benchmade to correct for nearly unusable lock stick). The satin blade and green thumbstuds/spacers, combined with the grey scales make this a very nice-looking knife as well. I totally understand not wanting to spend this kind of money on a bugout. Like I said, I was almost that guy myself. But this BladeHQ exclusive has taken whatever flaws the bugout may have had, and fixed them, leaving you with an incredible knife. If you're on the fence, just do it.
I just received mine in the mail and if you really like the bugout then this is a perfect knife for you. I have several knives that are from the custom knife builder that benchmade has and they are always the best quality ones they put out and this blade hq exclusive is no exception. I couldn’t be more impressed by how well this knife came out.
Great form, but I had to lube and fiddle with the pivot tension a little to get the action to what I wanted. No big deal. A little lock stick that most broke in after a short while, but occasionally returns. Blade plenty sharp and love the good steel and texture on the scales. If I retract both sides of the axis loc and I flick my wrist just right it will flip open without using the stud. Pretty cool. Very light and I don't feel it in the pocket. Great EDC.
When I first received this exclusive, it was tight and I foolishly considered sending it back. I lubricated the pivot and backed-off the the pivot screw just slightly... then proceeded to flick it open and closed for a couple of days. This is now one of the smoothest, quickest opening, easy to carry, high quality knives in my EDC rotation. If you give it a week to break-in, you will be rewarded with a 2.2 oz. masterpiece with 20CV steel, exquisite G10 handles and a sublime Axis lock. My only wish is that the knife was sharper out of the box... like a TRM or Spyderco. Otherwise, I consider this the absolute best Bugout ever made!
What’s not to like? Fit and finish are perfect. A Drop of Bluelube on the pivot and the blade flicks open. Edge is flawless and hair popping sharp. Scales are well formed with no defects. All hardware is tight and blade is centered. Very Nice EDC knife.
I ordered a custom Benchmade Bugout with CPM-20CV steel and red G10 handle, red thumb stud and red pivot washers, very similar to this one but with different colors, and I love it. It looks great, is very fidgety, cuts extremely well and is the lightest knife I've ever held. Feels like nothing in my pocket. My favorite knife right now.
Great steel and with the G-10 grips, this is what guy's have been wanting. The price might scare off some but if you were to only own one quality knife that would last a lifetime, this should be on your short list. I'm sure others are happy that BHQ had enough in stock so they didn't sell out the first hour. I grabbed another for a gift an hour later. Great job!
Right out of the box had perfect action and super sharp edge. Heard some others had trouble but mine was perfect. Very light and slicey, and just the right size for mixed company (doesn't scare people like my Fact). And the green accents are like a spark from the the land of Eire; cop on!
One of the best Bugout models. And the green in contrast with the grey and silver are very appealing. Plus a little more confidence in the handle strength over the other three models with polymer. And it's still very light, just vanishes in the pocket, a joy to have on hikes.
Very pleased with this one. The colors look even better in person than they do in the pictures. I like the look and feel of the G10 scales. The blade is nicely done, and the fit and finish are excellent. The action was perfect out of the box. This is my first Bugout, so I was a little surprised at how lightweight it is. Carries very nicely in the pocket. This may very well replace my much loved Mini Griptilian for EDC duties!
I have been using the OG blue Bugout for the better part of the last year and it was my favorite EDC carry. I always however yearned for nicer blade steel than s30v and when I learned more about steels I saw BHQ offering this one with 20cv. It is still in its honeymoon phase with me but if it is half as loved as my original it is (a lot of) money well spent.
The basic Bugout was a solid EDC item, but Blade HQ has made it a formidable EDC tool. With the $150 sale, this is a knife of epic proportions. On my particular Bugout, the grinds are nice; but the blade will need stropped to be razor sharp, and the pivot needed some loosening; and now it is drop-shut with no blade play. Other than these two small things, the knife is perfect.
I've wanted a Bugout for a while but, for the price, there are SO many knives I would rather buy. Mostly Pro-techs and Spyderco's. This is my first Benchmade and I only bought it because it was 20CV on sale. Got some black aluminum Aimfront scales, a better thumb stud because the stock one is HORRIBLE, and switched out the barrel spacers for an RSD Backspacer, and it looks like a Pro-Tech now, so I love it. Took a little too much to make it ideal and Benchmades color schemes are kinda cheesy to me so I probably won't ever buy one at full price. But I'm pretty happy with the one I have. Thanks, BHQ for the sale.
First impressions. •The action comes stiff, but it should loosen with use. •The handle is thin, which is good while it’s in the pocket but I’ll be looking for replacement scales with more girth. •The blade is work-sharp, but with prominent grain on the edge. Some sharpening should polish that up. •The thumb screws are a bit shallow and close to the pivot for my taste, but I wanted to change those with the scales anyway. I bought this knife for the 20CV blade and the lock, and with a little use and some sharpening it will be a good knife for the price.
Great EDC. Comes a bit stiff but it will loosen up, promise. Between the blade choice, G-10, and weight, it is a lovely knife. Expensive, yes, but you get what you pay for. All around great!
I looked at the original blue Bugout a year or two ago at Cabella's. It wasn't for me. It just felt cheap with the plastic handles and I didn't get the design of it. At $200, this model was definitely overpriced. I already had the $178 full size G10 20CV Griptilian, so I couldn't justify paying more money for a smaller knife with the same materials. I got this one when it was on sale at $150. What a steal! For essentially the same price as the ranger green model, you could get the best version of the Bugout. The G10 handles made a night and day difference and I have no complaints with 20CV. The mini deep carry clip was slightly too tight, but it's loosened up and has a good tension now. Action was perfect when I backed off the pivot slightly. I had some fit and finish issues that knocked off one star. one of the liners was bent and it didn't sit flush within the handle scale. I had to disassemble the knife and swap the liners around to get them both flush inside the handles. The edge was also incredibly uneven. The show side was much steeper than the clip side.
FYI, the screws, pivot, and AXIS bolt associated with this knife are not as pictured. The picture shows these with a satin finish while as-delivered those items have a dark finish like the coated blade version. Similarly, the pocket clip pictured is a stonewash while as-delivered is a dark finish (see pics for 535BK-2002, it's the same). Disappointing. Knife scales feel great, blade is well-ground, symmetrical and is centered.
When I saw Blade HQ was getting an exclusive Bugout with 20CV, I was like, damn, definitely getting one! I have a Knife Center exclusive Bugout and my gripe was that the steel was the same old S30V, so this was like a dream! Upon first opening it, the knife felt heavier than the one with grivory handle, and it was MUCH stiffer! I have an Aimfront scale coming my way, but I don't think this even needs it as it's plenty stiff! My biggest complaint about this knife is the quality. The action was terrible out of the box. Can you flip it open and close, yes, but with a lot of wrist. So I took it apart, polished the washers, readjusted the pivot and lo and behold, it is now drop shut. As soon as the axis lock is disengaged, the blade is free swinging, that's how it should be out of the box! This is a Bugout for $200, it should have much better action! Come on Benchmade! It's not that hard! There are Chinese made knives with crappier materials that has much better action, so for something "Made in USA" it should demand a better action than the one I got.
I picked this up because I liked all the upgrades. G-10, 20CV, etc. Overall the knife is great. I will say this- the pivot was tightened down so hard that it took my using pliers and my torx driver to back it off a hair so that it would have smooth action. It wouldn't drop at all one handed when I got it. And the blade needed to be stropped. So about 3 minutes worth of effort and the knife is razor sharp and the action is super smooth. Drops shut like a dream and blade is centered. I own many knives and a handful of Benchmade- while I am thoroughly pleased with this purchase at this price point you really shouldn't have to do these kind of quality control steps that should happen at the factory.
Gorgeous knife. Really more aesthetically pleasing than I imagined. Also the dullest knife ootb I have ever owned. Will need to sharpen before even using. Doesn't seem right to me.
My pivot screw was way over tightened.
This is my second Bugout. I love the light weight and deep pocket carry of the Bugout design. When I seen this version of the knife I immediately loved the look. But when it came in the mail today I felt a little gypped. First I want to say that the knife looks amazing. I love the green accents with the gray scales. What I didn't like was that my knife couldn't cut paper with the ease that I expect from a new knife. My S30V version cuts better than this knife. This is my first knife that has 20CV steel. Ive heard nothing but good things about how sharp its supposed to be. Either Benchmade's people can't sharp this steel or the steel isn't what it's hyped up to be. The second thing I didn't like was how quickly the gray handles get smudged. I let a buddy take a look at it, and the dirt from his hand was all over the handles. I was planning on using this knife in my EDC rotation. Now I can't even carry the knife until I can get it sharpened. I'd say if you're looking for a Bugout just buy the standard version and skip this one.
I just received my 535-2002. It’s stiff, which is more or less expected. The centering was disappointing. While not touching the scale, it’s noticeably not centered. I dig the satin hardware, the scales are boring in color, but have a good texture. All I can say is I’m glad it was on sale, if not it would have been extremely disappointing.
Love how this bugout looks and feels, but if it’s defective you won’t be able to exchange it for a new one as BladeHQ doesn’t offer exchanges. Not willing to pay an extra $50 to get what I paid for via refund and rebuy. Sending it back to Benchmade, which you shouldn’t have to do with a brand new knife.
My very first Benchmade. I bought it because it was on sale and I’ve always wanted to have just one Benchmade. So I figured what the heck. Right out the box, there’s a visual difference in bevel angle from one side to the other. The an extreme burr left from the higher angle, hanging over the lower angle. It’s like they forgot to finish shaping that side. Then the axis lock. After about a day of use, every time I flick it open, the lock gets wedged. So you’ve got to use considerable force to disengage it.. very disappointing for such an iconic knife manufacturer.
I feel like I should say that the Flytanium scales will not work with the green barrel spacers. They are cut differently than the existing hardware for the other Bugouts. Benchmade plays dirty!
This version was the first and only Bugout I've handled. I waited for this version since the regular ones get a lot of negative feedback about the Grivory handles. I received this today and was very disappointed. This is not my first Benchmade, so I'm familiar with the brand. However, the Bugout just feels really cheap. And the fit and finish is the worst I've seen on a Benchmade.The blade was so off center, it almost touched the scale. I am returning this.
I have purchased this variant of the Bugout twice now, over the last couple of years. I have had other Bugouts that had centered, drop shutty actions with no play. My first one of this variant was not so drop shutty, but I kept it anyway. I just recently purchased another one, with high hopes, but this latest one was horrible. There was nothing that I could do to improve the action and I am returning it this time. I definitely do not recommend this variant of the Bugout. I love the Bugout, but just not this one. Your mileage may vary...