Monday, March 12, 2012

Hogue 3.5" EX-01 Folding Knife Riding Low

Seen here is the Hogue 3.5 EX-01 showing the factory clip the owner of this knife wants replaced with a fold over clip using the same hole pattern. .
Click any picture to bring it out to full size and use mouse to  move from one to the next pic.

People have been writing me asking about this knife wanting to know if I could do a clip for one. I could tell looking at pics that it was possible. No one wanted to do without the folder though so I never made one until today when someone finally parted with their folder long enough to allow me to play with one of these for the first time. The clip hole pattern is set up quite well to adapt to a fold over as you can see. I experimented some and yes, I kept the pattern so I should not need the knife again after today. Tip down is a very very tight fold over for this model. I'm not sure I could even fold it to be flush being that the hole proxmity to the edge is so close on that position but we'll cross that bridge when we come to it I guess.

I made two clips here. The first I did was a little thinner at the fold and I made it such that it would really bury the knife in the pocket. The second clip does not quite bury the folder all the way but it is still pretty nicely snug down in the pocket. Both are very comfortable in the hand. Anyway I hope this answers the questions for some wanting to know if this is possible. As you can see I took time to walk you through the process from start to finish. I learned a few things with this folder besides the hole proximity to the end of the handle by having this folder here. I also discovered that the heads of the factory screws stand up way tall to work for a low rider so I replaced those with a couple button head T6 2-56 size Torx screws to let the clip slide over the pocket rim a lot easier. Those and the original clip will go back in a baggy with the folder.

The folder shown here is nice. I like the feel of it. I feel better about this button lock than others I've seen. It has a lock for the lock which is a very good thing with button locks. Its lighter than it looks in my opinion and it has a tip heavy feel in the hand due to the lighter weight of the handle and build.The clip secures by brass inserts that are threaded. It is worth mention that those can cross thread pretty easily if one is not careful so it is advised to be alert when starting a screw to put your clip back on.

First thing I did was of course lay out the original clip on my sheet of titanium. Once I traced that I had a pattern to play with some and this allows me to stay with the same feel of the original by using the original as a design template so to speak to create a new clip design in the form of a low rider. Of course one could do any number of things with this much width to work with so if one wanted it would be just as easy to thin it down for width to where it almost looked like a Para 2 clip but I thought it best for simplicity sake to try to stick with the feel of what Allen originally created with his own custom clip for the model. Besides the hole pattern is spaced such that you can make the clip a little wider so why not?

Well, thanks for stopping by guys. Enjoy and if you are interested in speaking with me about one of my custom made clips see here

 or email me at

This is a profile shot of the factory clip shown bottom and top on the  Hogue

Hogue presentation side. 

Here we have my titanium and traced pattern of the factory clip

Here I've redesigned the mount and will take into account for the fold over so we have to make it a little longer

I could add more than this but my goal is for a final size of around a 2" to 2.125" long clip overall

Shown above here is the factory clip right with my two slightly longer blanks for this first set of clips for the Hogue EX-01

Looks like the distance from the mid point of both screw holes to the end of the handle is 9mm for tip up carry for the Hogue EX-01 3.5. For tip down carry the distance is 5 mm and it is very difficult for me to fold over closer than 6 mm usually drifting them more toward 7 mm due to my tools and the size of the jaws.  

Still hot from the torch after the fold over for the 180

Now we clean it up some. 

Just about 2" on the dot for this clip shown here before bead blasting.

Now we have to cut some new custom length screws. This is a quick and easy way to zip it off quick using a thin kerf cut off disc, and a sheet of thin brass picked up at Hobby Lobby and drilled with number 48 holes which were then threaded by me to allow me to hold screws just for this reason. 

Here we see the new black screws after cutting off the excess. Now we flatten those off some and remove any burr

Now bad for taking this myself hoping to hit it good enough to work huh? 

One more shot for the first attempt before bead blasting

Here we have clip number one completed and installed on the folder after bead blasting it all over
  Clip number two went along quite well after getting warmed up. Of the two I tend to like the ones with less overhang but it seems 90% of my customers would zero in the one that buries the knife so its personal pref as to which you prefer. These type handle designs with the slant or gentle curve such as that seen on the Delica 4 make it difficult to allow the clip to rise up far enough before doing the 180 degree fold over to actually bury the folder in the pocket. Hope that makes sense.

Now we're off to the races to do it all again. I may thin this one a bit more before I'm done with it. 

Skipping all the other parts I show what we have here for the two completed clips. 

Shown here is clip number two mounted on the folder. 

Side profile of a low rider is always a bit taller but surprisingly  they are comfortable in most grips. 

Another shot looking down on the spine 

And the finished product in clip number two shown here after some refinement to better flush the fold over to the handle and clean up the mount plate. 

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