The H&K Turmoil OTF Knife

by on 12/21/2016

Most of us have wanted a Stiletto or more properly called an OTF knife for “Out The Front”, since we were little kids. The instantly deploying badassness that a lot of the bad guys in the movies had is just too cool. There is something sweet to be said about having that little slim handle in your hand that shoots a blade out instantly with a menacing click at the push of a button.

When I was a young, everyone knew that these were illegal and only the tough kids or the ones with cool parents had them. In my neighborhood growing up, most of them were bought on vacations in Mexico and snuck across the border in the spare tire well along with illegal fireworks and tax-free booze. Those were the “good old” days of smuggling contraband. These Mexican knives were really cheap, the blades easily went dull and their mechanisms broke after a few days of playing with them. Still, it was fun to impress your buddies with. I had bought a few along with a stash of firecrackers that I was selling until my parents busted me and took them away, I was in deep trouble.

Now that I’m older and have the means to buy a quality OTF knife, the first thing you get is sticker shock because these things are expensive! The Microtech and Benchmade models are nice but the cost of entry begins at around the high $200’s and the price only goes up and up from there. Recently, we found that the folks at H&K are offering a super high-quality OTF knife at a somewhat reasonable price so we just had to get one for testing.

As a cautionary note, in many states, automatic knives like the aforementioned are illegal so check your local laws before buying them. Many companies will not sell them to you unless you are military or law enforcement.  In others, these knives are legal to own but illegal to transport which probably means you can have them at home but cannot carry them anywhere. We are not lawyers so we are not giving out legal advice.

This OTF knife came in a nice little microfiber storage bag with a drawstring and toggle lock. The Turmoil is made for H&K by Benchmade and is surprisingly cheaper than most of Benchmade’s own OTF offerings. It is one of the inexpensive knives in this market segment with a street price in the low $200 range.

The knife itself is a beauty. The slim and compact body is CNC-machined from 6061-T6 aircraft aluminum. It is then hard anodized black. Hard anodizing is a tough and durable surface that should hold up well to pocket wear. The two halves of the handle contain the blade and the mechanism that are held together by stainless torx screws. The handle has grooves machined into it that actually really help with grip even though they seem small.

The back side of the handle has a black DLC coated stainless steel pocket clip that is held on with three torx screws. Notice the handle is beveled and rounded so everything is smooth and snag free and it won’t chew up your pocket lining. You can also see the generous jimping on the bottom front of the handle for additional grip.

The thumb slide (trigger) has generous grooves for grip and is slanted back to give the thumb purchase when deploying the blade and to greatly help with grip once the blade is out.

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The Turmoil has great ergonomics making it a "snap" to use. For high-end OTF knives, the Turmoil is one of the lower cost ones and offers great quality for the price.


OTF knives have limited usefulness other than being badass. The D2 Tool Steel blade is not particularly corrosion resistant and is tough to sharpen.

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Bottom Line

If you want a good OTF knife, look at the H&K Turmoil first before you buy other uber expensive offerings.

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