Cold Steel Mini Tac Tanto

We reviewed the Cold Steel Mini Tac Tanto, a lightweight self-defense knife from Cold Steel, one of the leaders in the self-protection industry.
Cold Steel Mini Tac Tanto

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The Cold Steel Mini Tac Tanto was one of my first travel and backpacking knives. I carried the Cold Steel Mini Tac Tanto and its companion the Best Pal, throughout my 2013-2014 travels. I don’t know how I stumbled upon the brand Cold Steel but young me was enticed with their crazy product videos, I ended up ordering these two lightweight knives from them.

Cold Steel

Mini Tac Tanto
  • Lightweight
  • Great handle
  • poorly constructed sheath
  • Rusts easily
Outsidevibes Rating
Backpacking Knife 30%

About the Cold Steel Mini Tac Tanto

The Cold Steel Mini Tac Tanto is a lightweight fixed blade knife, available with or without a serrated edge. With a slim 3.75″ blade and hand molded handle the Mini Tac Tanto was designed for concealing. Overall length is 6.75″ and the Mini Tac Tanto is constructed from a mix of Japanese and Australian  A8 stainless steel.

This lightweight knife comes with the specially made Cold Steel Secure Ex-sheath, designed for wearing the Mini Tac Tanto as a neck knife, the specially molded sheath offers a variety of strap points.

Cold Steel Mini Tac Tanto 4

Outsidevibes Gear Review

Right away I want to talk about the specially designed Cold Steel Secure EX-Sheath, which in my experience isn’t worth the fancy name. This two piece molded sheath split down the seam the first few days of having it on both my Mini Tac Tanto and Best Pal. During my travels I had to tape them to keep the knifes from constantly falling out of the sheath in my backpack.

The Cold Steel Mini Tac Tanto lightweight knife is built nicely. The design of the blade, how it tapers from the back to the front would be great on the non-serrated version but I made the mistake of ordering the serrated version.

When traveling it’s nice to have a solid knife with you for cutting fruit, food and random things when needed. But having the serrated edge ruined most of the day to day functionality of the Mini Tac Tanto that I wanted to have it for.

I was also backpacking through Southeast Asia at the time and only after a couple weeks the stainless steel blade started to rust and get pitted. Even though my Mini Tac Tanto was kept dry the humidity was not good on it.

Final Thoughts about the Cold steel Mini Tac Tanto

I regret purchasing the serrated Mini Tac Tanto version, which take up most of the blade length. Maybe if I purchased the non-serrated version of the Mini Tac Tanto I would still use it today but with the rust and serrations I have moved on to better travel knives.

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Sheridan is a full-time adventure seeker, professional photographer, and creator of Outsidevibes. Having a serious case of wanderlust Sheridan has traveled extensively around the world. He has overcome multiple, serious injuries from traveling but he is determined to continue experiencing life to the fullest.

Hey, I'm Sheridan.

I’m a full-time adventure photographer, coffee creator, van builder, and writer!

Welcome to Outsidevibes, the BEST resource for all things travel, outdoor, hiking, backpacking, and nature-related. As an adventure person, I aim to share honest information, passionate stories and promote positive inspiration for those who love travel and the outdoors.

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