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TOPS Brakimo – Designed for Jungle Work

TOPS knives recently introduced the Brakimo (pronounced BRAH-key-moe), naming it in honor of the Matis Indian tribe of the Amazon jungle. Joe Flowers, who designed the blade, is the owner of Bushcraft Global, a survival school that often leads him into the jungle. Lacking a flagship knife for his company, Joe fashioned the Brakimo to fit that need. The Brakimo (the name comes from the Matis’ language), is intended for use as backup to a machete or main camp knife.

TOPS Brakimo1

Here’s what TOPS tells us about it.

TOPS Brakimo

It has a fairly wide blade profile combined with TOPS’ modified Scandi grind that gives it great cutting and splitting power. The tip narrows dramatically to make it useful for drilling holes for bow-drill fires, blow gun mouth pieces, traps, etc. The simple design is perfect for many different uses. Made with 1095 high carbon steel, it’s easy to maintain the edge while out in the field. We found through testing on the 2015 Bushcraft Global trip that by keeping it dry whenever possible, rust was not an issue.

Overall Length: 10.0”
Blade Length: 5.25”
Cutting Edge: 5.25”
Blade Thickness: 0.19”
Blade Steel: 1095 RC 56-58
Blade Finish: Tumble Finish
Handle Material: Green Canvas Micarta
Knife Weight: 9.4oz
Weight w/ Sheath: 12oz
Sheath Material: Black Kydex
Sheath Clip: Rotating Injection Molded Nylon
Designer: Joe Flowers

TOPS Brakimo2

If you want to get your hands on this knife, you’ll find it right here.

Curious about the Matis?

mariwanceremonyofMatis5

They're a primarily hunter-gatherer tribe who lived pretty much as they have for thousands of hears until contacted by the modern world less than fifty years ago. Hunting proficiency with a blowpipe (sometimes as much as 3.5 meters long) is a trait highly respected within the tribe. The weapons are accurate up to 30 meters (90 ft.) and silent; with them a group of Matis can take a whole troop of monkeys in one hunt. They have been known to use komo to poison an entire stretch of river, incapacitating all fish within for harvesting. The Matis have very colorful traditions, including the Mariwin, wherein two tribesmen wear bright red mask and come out of the woods to whip children considered lazy or have misbehaved.

By the mid 80s unfortunately, a series of epidemics killed an estimated third of their population. Such has often been the case for indigenous peoples of the Amazon, who are largely isolated and lack immunity to western diseases. Before contact with the outside world there were five Matis villages. Today there are two villages the Matis inhabit and the tribe numbers barely 300.

They seem a worthy culture to name a hard-use jungle tool for.

Matis tribesman4

You can learn more about the Matis tribe by going to Amazon-indians.org and bbc.co.uk.




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