Back in June, I attended a writers’ conference at American Outdoor Brands, providing me with a wide range of new gear to review. One such product is the Smith & Wesson M&P Officer (Thin Blue Line) folding knife. I have used an inexpensive S&W M&P-branded folding rescue knife on duty for at least 10 years because of the carbide window breaker tip. I was happy to find an updated version.
Officer Folding Knife Details
The M&P Officer folding knife caught my attention right away due to the thin blue line tribute outlining the black G10 grips on both sides. The grips are nicely contoured for a solid, natural grip. There is a reversible pocket grip. The hex screws holding the grips together and the blade pivot are all made of stainless steel. There is a reverse checkering pattern in the grips that is extremely comfortable while still providing a limited slip grip.
At the base of the Officer folding knife is a carbide window breaker designed for breaking safety glass windows in an automobile in case of emergency. While this type of glass breaker will not work on laminated windshield or household glass, it does a great job on safety glass.
Breaking automotive safety glass with the carbide breaker tip is easy to do. Simply tap — not smash — the glass in either lower corner of the window with the tip. The glass will shatter across the entire window but stay in place, allowing the glass to be pushed toward the interior of the vehicle. (It’s best to have a glove on or wrap your hand in a shirt before doing this.) No need to hit the glass hard either; a simple push will do. (Hitting the glass hard will send the small fragments all over the car’s interior and on anyone inside.)
The blade of the Officer knife is made of 8CR13MOV stainless steel. This stainless steel of Chinese origin is comparable to AUS-8 steel but slightly softer with a higher carbon content. It is often used in less-expensive folding blades and rated as a mid- to upper-range steel. It is a good choice for the M&P Officer knife.
The 3.25-inch blade on the knife is partially serrated, and the point is a deep penetrating tanto style. By way of contrast, the 4-inch fixed blade Officer knife has a spear point and a standard edge. The shorter 3.25-inch blade on the folder helps keep it easy to carry in the pocket.
The Officer folder uses the preferred finger flipper (backed up by a thumb stud) and an “ultra-glide” bearing to ensure smooth opening. It snaps open easily and locks firmly into place. There is no play when locked. The back of the folder is open to avoid the accumulation of dirt and lint.
In the Field
I am writing this while on our family vacation at the lake. I haven’t had to use the S&W M&P Officer to bust open a car window for a heroic rescue. But I can tell you that it has been getting its share of use on everyday tasks requiring a sharp, one-hand-opening blade. And it handled those tasks with aplomb.
One thing I was reminded of this week while in the humid lake environment is that stainless steel rusts if not protected. After six days, I noted some tiny rust dots along the top of the blade. Horrified because I hadn’t taken pictures yet, I went searching for something with which to clean the rust off and found a can of Liquid Wrench. The Liquid Wrench and a paper towel faded the rust dots without messing up the M&P Officer logo, making the blade look almost as good as new.
The Smith & Wesson M&P Officer knife makes an excellent duty tool for law enforcement or for anyone who is looking for a useful knife that also serves as a rescue tool. It is a big improvement over previous S&W-branded blades. MSRP is only $31.99. The larger fixed-blade version is $49.99.
Smith & Wesson: Smith-Wesson.com/Knives
About Scott W. Wagner
After working undercover in narcotics and liquor investigations, Scott W. Wagner settled down to be a criminal justice professor and police academy commander. He was also a SWAT team member, sniper and assistant team leader before his current position as patrol sergeant with the Village of Baltimore, Ohio, Police Department. Scott is a police firearms instructor certified to train revolver, semi-automatic pistol, shotgun, semi- and fully automatic patrol rifle, and submachine gun.