The Browning Speed Load Steel is new for 2019, joining their popular Hunting folder and Fixed in their series of Speed Load replaceable blade knives. The first two models in the line were remarkable for being extremely robust for disposable blade knives. The Steel model is a little more gracile in its construction, using lighter blades than the others, and it is not compatible with regular utility knife blades. It makes up for this in solid construction of its own, a great deep carry pocket clip, and in being a viable lightweight EDC in addition to a capable game knife. It is also capable of taking ceramic blades.
The blade exchange system works great. Since you need to hold the thumb stud down whole you depress the top lock, there is no chance of the blade coming loose by accident. As mentioned, replacement blades are available in both steel and ceramic.
The knife is not flipable, but opens smoothly utilizing the thumb stud. The liner lock functions well, and seems of a suitable gauge for the knife’s construction and intent.
Despite being lighter weight than the prior models, the carriage for the blade feels solid, and does not wobble. There is a fair amount of blade play from the replacement blade, but this is in line with other brands I have tried. It is the nature of the replaceable blade style. As mentioned, I still feel comfortable with how the blade is secured.
The ergonomics are good, with the rubberized handle inserts providing good grip.
The pocket clip is deep carry and the knife rides comfortably in the pocket.
While I was able to find several reviews of the originals, I could not find one of the steel. The construction is different enough that I do not feel like it is worth sharing in this post.
We would like to once again thank Browning for providing us with 9 knives for our giveaway. I have enjoyed getting to become more familiar with their lineup. I admit to overlooking their offerings, but several – like the Wheelhouse, can easily go toe-to-toe with knives at considerably higher price points.