Review of the Brous Blades Mini-Division
I’ve often written of my difficulties of finding a good tactical “flipper.” I recently found a great one in the Brous Blades T4 – it’s a great option on the weekends when I don’t mind carrying a bit larger knife. But what can I carry the other five days a week? I’ve been on the hunt for a higher-end tactical flipper at around the 3.5″ blade length – something that I can slip in my pocket during the week. Not long after getting my T4, Jason Brous announced that he was making a smaller version of his very popular Division flipper, and he’d be calling it the Mini-Division. In January, Brous Blades did a pre-order on the Mini-Division – a limited edition run of 1000 pieces it would have a 3.5″ D2 steel blade, and G10 handle scales, available in three difference finish variants (satin, stone wash, and blackout) with prices ranging from $299.00 to $329.00 depending on finish.
Based on the description, and how happy I was with the Brous T4, I decided to order the Mini-Division in satin finish. Less than 30 days after the initial announcement and pre-order (are you listening Zero Tolerance?) Brous Blades began shipping the Mini-Division:
As you can see by the warranty card which came with the knife, I got a very low serial number – #12.
Let’s start with the “good” on this knife because it truly is excellent. While it isn’t a titanium framelock like a Strider SNG or a Hinderer XM-18, it does compare rather favorably as a tactical folder/flipper. Like the T4, the Mini-Division has G10 handle scales on both sides of the blade, with a liner lock and milled out stainless steel liners against the G10. The ergonomics of the Mini-Division are good, but not exceptional – it’s the old “form vs. function” trade-off. The smooth G10 scales on the Mini-Division look great…better than the T4 in my opinion. But the grooved and textured G10 scales on the T4 provide much more traction. It’s not a tremendous problem though because of the ergonomic design of the handle – it conforms nicely to the hand and provides a very positive purchase.
The Mini-Division blade has the same fantastic satin finish I just love on the T4, but the blade is much more traditional looking – sort of a hollow ground drop point. It also has a nice hollowed out groove near the spine that gives both a nice aesthetic and a functional alternative method for deploying the blade beyond the flipper. It also arrived absolutely razor, hair-popping sharp from the factory.
The blade is also perfectly centered in the handle scales and is very sterile in terms of branding/logo placement – the Brous Blades name and production serial number appear innocuously on the spine of the blade:
Also in the good category is the Mini-Division pocket clip – it’s of the features on this knife which I prefer hands down over what’s offered on the T4 as the pocket clip was one of my few complaints with the T4:
It’s both attractive and a joy to use particularly if a deep carry pocket clip is preferred (which I do).
I wish I could say I’m head over heals in love with the Mini-Division but the fact of the mater is, while it’s a truly great knife, it’s not precisely what I was looking for in a 3.5″ blade tactical flipper. The biggest problem is the size of the Mini-Division – it’s not quite as “mini” as I’d like. I’ve carried a couple of time during the week – it’s just slightly too chunky, slightly too heavy, and slightly too long. I can drop it in my pocket, and it’s “doable” – just not as comfortable for “every day carry” as I’d hoped. During the weekend, when I don’t mind clipping it to a pocket? It’s great. But again, that’s not what I was looking for in this knife. Size wise the Mini-Division is so close to the T4 it almost seems like a duplication for me, which I normally try to avoid.
In the below video I indicate that the Mini-Division isn’t a keeper for me…quite honestly, I haven’t made up my mind on that – I go back and forth. It’s so cool looking that it’s hard to get rid of. It’s like a cute puppy that you can’t potty train…you know you should find it a new home, but just can’t quite bring yourself to do so. For the $300.00 asking price, it’s a tremendous value when comparing it to other mid-tech/semi-custom tactical flippers. It’s also one heckuva good knife – I’m just not sure yet it’s for me. Here’s my video supplement to the written photo review:
John B. Holbrook, II
John B. Holbrook, II is a freelance writer, photographer, and author of ThruMyLens.org, as well as LuxuryTyme.com and TheSeamasterReferencePage.com. *All text and images contained in this web site are the original work of the author, John B. Holbrook, II and are copyright protected. Use of any of the information or images without the permission of the author is prohibited.