SOG Aegis Review

The term “aegis” has ancient roots. Commonly used in Greek mythology, aegis means “protector” and has been often symbolized in the form of a shield. In many ways the SOG Aegis is emblematic of a protector as well. If ever needed the Aegis could certainly offer its user security – be it helping in some emergency utility task. or perhaps by performing in a more tactical role. And while the knife was not imbued with any mythical powers, the light weight and wicked blade are quite enchanting, and are among many reasons to consider adding this knife to your collection.

General Dimensions and Blade Details

The Aegis has a 3.5″ blade, an overall length of 8.25″ and a weight of 3.1 ounces. This is a medium sized folder and depending on who you are, could be on the larger side for EDC. The weight of only 3.1 ounces is exceptionally lightweight so if carrying a bigger blade appeals to you this is a good option.

SOG Aegis Review

The blade on this knife is a long leaf shape and comes with a plain (non-serrated) edge. Made from 1/8″ stock this blade terminates with a needle sharp tip. Seriously, the tip on this thing is incredible. The full flat grind and absence of a swedge enhances this feature and the blade shape is excellent for thrust cuts and piercing. However, you will want to be careful with prying or stabbing into hard materials as the unenforced tip could break. This isn’t necessarily a negative, you just want to bring the right tool for the job. If prying is your modus operandi go to the hardware store and pick up a crowbar. The edge came absolutely razor sharp with a beautiful job done on the grinds. As an emergency tactical knife I think this blade shape is highly effective. For EDC tasks there is ample belly and great slicing capability with the full flat grind.

SOG Aegis - Blade Detail

As you can see in the photographs, you have a couple different options for finishes. Shown here are the satin finished blade (with matching silver hardware) and black titanium nitride (TiNi) coated versions. Both are beautifully done. I love the satin finish SOG puts on their knives, but the TiNi coating wins points for hiding finger prints and the general “stealth factor”. I have found the coating to be very durable – this isn’t some inexpensive coating that will rub off. It will wear with use, but expect it to hold up favorably to cheaper painted teflon coatings.

The Aegis comes in AUS8 stainless steel – a very nice mid range Japanese stainless steel. I love the keen edge AUS 8 takes and the ease of sharpening. I haven’t noticed any issues with rust and the steel resists chipping. SOG cryogenically heat treats their AUS 8 which provided enhanced toughness and better edge retention. I think AUS8 was a good choice and SOG really knows how to work with this steel.

Handle, Ergonomics and Pocket Clip

Like the Flash II, the Aegis has a glass reinforced nylon (GRN) handle and lacks metal liners. The GRN on the Aegis is of high quality and feels good (not cheap and plasticy). This is a closed back design. Due to the absence of liners, it’s a very lightweight handle.

The ergonomics of the Aegis is also very nice. With a 4.75″ handle there is plenty of room for my larger hand and it naturally offers a comfortable 4 finger grip in both forward and reverse positions. I love the flowing lines of the handle, it fills the hand and provides great visual balance.

SOG Aegis - Handle Detail

Grip has further been enhanced with “digital” texturing and all the corners have been smoothed and rounded. SOG embedded rubber inserts into the handles which provide extra feedback and grip. Additionally, the back of the handle and spine of the blade have been given some jimping. Oddly, the jimping faces towards the tip but it does offer grip (especially the TiNi version – I think the satin finish has rounded the “bite” off just a little). Personally, I think it would offer more grip if the jimping was oriented in the opposite direction, but the current configuration does provide some traction. The choil area has been given some texturing, a sort of enlarged jimping or “scalloping” if you will. This helps lock the index finger in place and provides more tactile response. All in all I love the ergonomics on the Aegis – it’s obvious a lot of time was put into designing the handle.

The pocket clip is SOG’s bayonet style clip. The clip allows for ambidextrous tip up carry, rides ultra low, and provides excellent retention. “SOG” has been cut into the clip, which I don’t mind, especially on the blackened version. All in all it’s a discrete carry.

Deployment and Lockup

Like many of SOG’s folders, the Aegis is an assisted opening knife. The spring on the assist is very good at shooting the blade out with a satisfying snap. The thumb studs are large and ambidextrous. It’s easy for me to get my thumb behind the stud and the knife flips out effortlessly.

SOG Aegis - Lock up

Lockup is done through SOG’s Arc lock. This style of lock is similar to a Benchmade Axis lock or the ball lock found on the Spyderco Manix 2. It is essentially a type of bolt lock. It’s a secure design that can be easily engaged. Lockup is quite secure on both of my Aegis knives with a microscopic amount of bladeplay in one and none in the other. This is a great accomplishment from a linerless design, and I was really impressed with how tight these knives locked up. One minor complaint (or wish perhaps?) would be to get the arc lock positioned on both sides. I know SOG does this on some of there more expensive folders, and would probably drive the price up (while providing a diminishing amount of utility). As a left handed user it would make the knife easier to close with one hand.

Also, like many of SOG’s assisted openers, there is a built-in safety. The safety is a nice option and I believe it’s part of the reason why SOG can offer this knife in tip-up carry (my preferred form of carry).

SOG Aegis - Final Thoughts

Final Thoughts

I have really enjoyed owning both of my Aegis’s (Aegi?) and believe that they could live up to their namesake.

Whether it’s helping you build shelter from a storm, or working as a tactical knife, the light weight and smart design is an excellent blend of form and function. And I have to admit, I love the form aspect of this knife. This is an awesomely balanced knife combining a big blade, fast deployment, robust lockup with a light and easy carry weight. Fit and finish is excellent, and the price (around $50) provides a lot of quality knife for your money.

Price Disclaimer
Prices are accurate as of less than 12 hours ago. Product prices and availability are subject to change. Any price and availablility information displayed on Amazon.com at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of any products.
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This entry was posted in Assisted and Automatic Knives, EDC Knives, Folding Knives, SOG, Tactical Knives. Bookmark the permalink.

19 Responses to SOG Aegis Review

  1. Roadkill says:

    Been thinking about an Aegis for a long time. If I didn’t have this still fairly new Griptilian clipped to my pocket, I think I might go for one presently. Arc-Locks I feel are smoother than Axis locks, but I don’t feel they’re quite as strong. For an edc blade, I think that the Aegis is one of the strongest examples in its price range. Another solid review, Dan. Thanks!

    • Dan says:

      It’s a nice knife RK, I’ve really enjoyed mine. Since the knife is devoid of liners, I’d say it’s definitely not near as strong. I should have a SOG w/ liners and an arc lock coming in soon so I’ll get a better idea as to the strength and capabilities of that lock. It is very smooth however and it’s a fun knife to open and close. Glad you have been enjoying the reviews man – I have many more in the works. Take care.

  2. Roadkill says:

    I thought I’d add that a smaller 3inch blade version is coming out soonish. http://sogknives.com/store/AE-21.html The black version might make a good gift for my wife. The blade on the Aegis series is just so very sexy. I’m having trouble figuring out why I like it so much. Maybe because it seems rather symmetrical?

    • Dan says:

      Oooh, I like the idea of a Mini – the Aegis is a large knife. For me it’s a bit much to EDC. A 3″ version could be really cool. Yes there is a lot of balance and symmetry in the blades (which I tried to capture w/ the two of them).

  3. brett harmon says:

    Good knife.owned two.I’ve noticed nothing is ever said about the blade.stainless,forged,made in china?I like it though.

    • Dan says:

      Hey Brett,

      I believe I do talk a little about the blade. It’s AUS8 steel, which is a Japanese made stainless steel. It’s forged into a bar, flattened into a sheet and then the final blade is cut out (by laser, mill or water jet) and ground down with belt grinders of some sort. I know the knife is assembled in Taiwan, not sure if they grind the blades in the Taiwanese factory or not (pretty sure they do). All in all it’s a decent steel – won’t hold an edge forever but very forgiving and easy to sharpen. Hope this helps a little, thanks for reading and the excellent question!

    • Dan says:

      Hey Brett,

      The blade is made of AUS8 steel, which is a Japanese stainless steel. It’s forged into a bar, flattened into a sheet and then the final blade is cut out (by laser, mill or water jet) and ground down with belt grinders of some sort. I know the knife is assembled in Taiwan, not sure if they grind the blades in the Taiwanese factory or not (pretty sure they do). All in all it’s a decent steel – won’t hold an edge forever but very forgiving and easy to sharpen. Hope this helps a little, thanks for reading and the excellent question!

  4. brett harmon says:

    Dan,sorry I misspoke.as I kept reading I realized that I hadnt finished my research before I opened my mouth.great reviews.I love the knife

    • Dan says:

      Brett, no worries at all man! I noticed I had a some extra crap in this review (I can get kinda wordy) which may make it harder to find the info you want. I tried to cut away some of the fat and I always appreciate feedback. Thanks for the kind words and happy New Year!

  5. Jamie says:

    Had to let you know that I recently picked up an Aegis mini (with the black TiNi) after reading this review of it’s big brother. I live in Canada and our carry laws are very ambiguous- basically, it’s up to the law enforcement officer to form a judgement on whether you were carrying the knife as a weapon or as a tool. I figured having a blade that was 0.5″ shorter might be easier to justify, as well as being able to point out that the knife has an engaged safety. As well, I live in an urban area and being Canada, if you’re not on a job site people tend to get nervous when they see others pull out a knife. Another win for the slightly shorter blade :)

    I noticed on other review sites that some seemed to regard the safety as an annoyance, but I quite like it. Once, in a moment of complete carelessness, I realized I had left my old knife sitting on the couch near where my young son was playing for about 15 minutes. Luckily nothing happened (I don’t think he even noticed) but it was definitely a wake-up call. While I will make sure this knife is always kept out of his reach, it’s nice to know that the safety means he won’t easily be able to open it if he ever did get his hands on it. This was actually a strong selling point for me.

    This is my first real knife (my other knife was a $10 hardware store special) and I couldn’t be happier with it. Thanks so much for the great review. I’m off now to read your knife care and maintenance page :)

    • Dan says:

      Hey Jamie! Thanks so much for the really thoughtful comment my friend. I have been traveling for the past 20 hours and am totally exhausted, but your comment was so epic that I thought it deserved an immediate response. I think the Mini Aegis is a great size for EDC, especially if you have laws like Canada, where there are no hard and fast rules. As you noted, they are much more socially acceptable so I don’t think you will experience as much friction from the public. I am with you, personally, I like having a safety on my assisted opening knives. Especially the way I carry them (tip up right side, but carried in my left hand pocket). And if you have small children, well, all the more reason to have a safety on a sharp assisted opener.

      Jamie thanks again for taking the time to leave such a nice comment. I hope the knife care and maintenance section isn’t too big of a disappointment. I really need to revise that. I have a number of sharpening and maintenance products that I want to review and include in that section as well. So much stuff to do, so little time. I hope you understand and I really appreciate all your support.

      • Jamie says:

        Speaking for myself, reviews of sharpening products would be most welcome, but I certainly understand time constraints and busy schedules.

        A friend of mine suggested I oil the blade with a 3 in 1 oil, but I liked your tip about using mineral oil as it means it’s safe to use the knife for food prep. Learned something already!

        Thanks again, I have your site bookmarked and you may just have started me on a new obsession hobby.

        • Dan says:

          Jamie, it’s something I’ve been meaning to work on so I’d like to try and get at least a good suggestion or two up for people to consider. Despite keeping pretty busy, this site is a project I always enjoy making time for. I just wish my publishing abilities would keep up with my purchasing abilities! ;)

  6. Jonny says:

    Hey how would this compare to the Voyager Medium for harder use and practical EDC?

    • Dan says:

      Hey Johnny,

      Between the 2 I definitely prefer the Medium Voyager for harder use. The lockup is much more solid and the aluminum liners make the knife much stronger. I also like the size and appearance of the Medium Voyager for EDC. It’s a little smaller and will be much more acceptable for public use. I edc’d my Voyager for over a month and loved it so that is the knife that I would recommend hands down.

      Thanks for the great question, I hope this helps!

      Dan

  7. nathan says:

    I really like the blade shape and overall look of the Aegis. I really would love to include it in my collection of folders. Great to know more about it in your review. Will get one soon. :)

  8. Nick D. says:

    I’ve owned the Aegis black NiTi for about 2 years and can’t say enough about it. It’s an excellent EDC and carries deep in my pocket. I do have some vertical blade play which doesn’t cause me any problem, I just know it’s there. However, I have read that many SOG folders suffer from some degree of play in the blade. I love the safety feature and consider it a worthwhile addition. Thank you for the great review!

    • Dan says:

      Nick,

      Thanks for leaving some thoughts about your Aegis – glad to hear you have been enjoying yours. I had one with some lateral play and one without. I think for normal use both knives should be fine, but blade play really bugs some people so I can understand where the concern comes from.

      At any rate, at the end of the day what matters most is whether you like the knife, so carry your Aegis in good health and enjoy! Thanks again.

      Dan

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