CRKT Bugsy, a compact and versatile fixed-blade bushcraft and hunting knife, proudly made in the USA

Kaila Cumings is a very popular TV personality in the USA. Raised in the countryside and forests of New Hampshire, she began her journey into the world of knives by reviewing them on YouTube and later started making them in her own workshop. Passionate about survival and defence techniques, Kaila achieved great popularity after her participation in the reality show Naked and afraid in which she showed off her athletic and tattooed physique. But it would be a mistake to give in to the temptation to see her as an all talk and no action influencer: Kaila has a truly remarkable technical background, both in terms of forging and design as well as survival, and even now that she has become a mother, she still participates in knife fairs and forging workshops. CRKT was one of the first companies to believe one hundred per cent in collaborating with the best international names in custom knife making and sooner or later their paths were bound to cross. The result is the Bugsy, a term that in American slang means "infested with bugs" but also "crazy".

CRKT Bugsy: a return to the origins for the American knife

The CRKT Bugsy with G10 handle and a black Cerakote finish
The CRKT Bugsy is available with a stonewash finish blade and red Micarta handle, like the specimen photographed, or with G10 handle and a black Cerakote finish.

The CRKT Bugsy is a fixed blade knife with full tang construction in 1095 forged carbon steel. It is derived from a custom model of the same name, and only slightly larger, that is part of Kaila's catalog. The blade of the Bugsy has a characteristic modified drop point profile, strongly characterised by a concave back that becomes convex towards the tip, creating an unmistakable line. It features a saber grind with false edge. The ricasso is rather pronounced (about 7 millimetres).

The CRKT Bugsy is available with either a plain blade edge or Veff partial serrations, a throwback to the fashion of a few years ago (which I personally don't regret at all). As you may have guessed, I'm not crazy about blades with serrations, but as the Bugsy is a knife intended for bushcraft and survival, it might prove more useful in this case. The blade is very well machined, with clean surfaces and a bevel worthy of a custom knife, while the sandblasted finish is faultlessy executed. The choice of 1095 steel is a good one: it is a high carbon steel that is particularly strong and offers excellent edge retention. It is therefore perfect for a knife intended for intensive use in hunting and bushcraft, to be resharpened in the field. Its shortcoming is that not being a stainless steel, it requires some maintenance, but this is certainly not a big problem for the enthusiast. The factory sharpening of the Bugsy is excellent, something that unfortunately you can't no longer assume. It is certainly a knife worthy of the claim "proudly made in the USA" printed on the accompanying warranty card. In the meagre packaging there is nothing more than a transparent plastic bag, but in this case that is enough.

The leather sheath of the CRKT Bugsy knife
The leather sheath of the CRKT Bugsy is really well made and adds value to this versatile fixed-blade knife.

The handle, too, is strongly characterised by a sinuous design, with a semi-anatomical profile created by three grooves of increasing width and by a bell-shaped profile that widens towards the pommel, where we find a large through tube to which the lanyard can be attached. On our version, the small tube houses a very short leather lace, while on the version with G10 hande there is an equally short piece of paracord. Just think of them as bookmarks. The back of the grip has a slight curve that actually makes it very comfortable, while the distal section towards the blade leaves a knurling on the back of the blade that ensures a very firm grip for the thumb. The handle surface is not checkered, but you won't miss it; the shape of the grip is really well done and fills the hand nicely, providing a very firm grip. I would also like to applaud the beautiful brick-coloured Micarta that matches both the blade and the natural leather of the sheath very well.

And speaking of the sheath, the one that accompanies the Bugsy is of remarkable quality, made of natural leather and with an almost intoxicating scent. It has a very solid-looking double stitching and wraps the knife almost completely, leaving only the end section of the handle uncovered. A non-adjustable loop allows the use on belts up to about 50 mm width. Retention is entrusted to the elasticity of the material: to draw the Bugsy it is best to grasp it by the braided leather lace protruding from the lanyard tube. In this case drawing is lightning fast. For a knife that has a price tag of around 170 euros and is made entirely in the USA, the sheath is really well made.

The CRKT Bugsy in  three version
The CRKT Bugsy in the version with G10 handle, black Cerakote finish and Veff serrations. The sheath of this version is made of Kydex.

Our conclusions on the CRKT Bugsy

For a fixed-blade knife with compact dimensions (less than 19 cm from tip to pommel), the Bugsy is very comfortable to hold firmly, even for those with larger than average hands. Everything falls into the right place and contributes to a secure grip and thus the knife handling. The blade also feels longer than its 96 millimetres and offers a good edge length. The only flaw, a bit pulled by the hair, is that the edges on the back of the blade are slightly rounded and are not very effective on the Firesteel fire starter. Otherwise, the product is excellent and shows how something new and of good quality can still be produced in the USA without ripping off the buyer. Accustomed to the sumptuous packaging of Chinese knives, the spartan cardboard box in which the Bugsy comes may look a little poor, but it is consistent with the no-frills philosophy of the American company. Our verdict on the CRKT Bugsy is therefore extremely positive.

CRKT Bugsy technical specifications and price






Kaila Cumings


Fixed blade knife

Blade Steel:

1095 carbon



Blade Length:

96 mm

Overall Length:

189 mm


Micarta or G10

Blade Edge:

Plain or with Veff serrations


122 g


Leather or Kydex


170 euro approx.

To find out more please visit the CRKT website.

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