The Police III, in particular, is a multi-purpose rescue tool ideated for urban context, and finds a specific use for roadside assistance. It features four main tools: a marlin spike, a primary blade, an emergency blade (safety cutter) and a glass breaker.
The primary blade with full flat grind is made of N690 steel with a lightly stone-washed finish. It is 87 mm long and 3 mm thick, and features a reverse tanto tip, designed to give a high resistance to the tip to which is added a swdge to improve overall penetration performance.
On blade spine there's a pronounced jimping which confers a better control on the tool, and the blade is provided with a right handed thumb stud, for manual blade deployment, that can be repositioned via a small torx screw for left-handed people.
The primary blade can be opened with one hand, but not so easily as the space required for the thumb to reach the thumb-stud does not seem to be enough.This issue, that occur both bare hands and above all with gloves, could probably be overcome by making a semicircular slight cut on the handle or, more simply, using an higher thumb-stud.
The primary blade rotates around a pivot adjustable via slot screwdriver and provided with a 12 position small stop-screw (a solution that closely resembles the one employed in fine firearms) to keep the pivot in the desired setting; to reduce friction of the blade traditional Teflon washers have been used. The safety cutter can be adjusted via a torx screw.
The locking mechanism is the liner-lock one, in which the liner spring is made of steel as well as the three sturdy stainless liners that enclose the whole knife structure, confering it considerable strength and rigidity.
The locking mechanism is extremely efficient and hold the blade in open position safely and without any kind of play. The blade unlocking is easy thanks to the ingenious liner design that protrudes from the handle profile so as to allow easier access even when you wear gloves.
The handle is made of Anticorodal anodised aluminum scales, matt black, material used in most of Extrema Ratio's folding knives. On the handle, close to the pivot on which the blade rotates, are engraved the model name and the serial number.
The Police III features also a comfortable and robust steel pocket clip, placed in ambidextrous tip-up configuration.
The most interesting feature of this product is the extremely sharp emergency blade, made of N690 stainless steel, with automatic opening to allow the tool to be used even in high stress conditions. This solution is made possible by the presence of a spring release button located on the handle, which quickly open the blade perpendicular to the handle.
The tip is rounded and the cutting edge is recessed to prevent accidentally injuring people who needed rescue, such as during the seat belt cutting as a result of a car crash or removing clothing. The recessed cutting edge has also the function of creating a kind of hook on the tip that strongly helps the cutting of tensioned belts. The blade width is reduced so that it can be inserted even in tight spaces.
On the safety cutter blade is etched "Use only in case of emergency", to highlight that it is a secondary blade that should be preserved as sharp as possible, so that it can be used as effectively as possible when needed.
The marlin spike presence is rather unusual in this specific tool, as the product name implies immediately the use by police operator or in any case it points to a rescue tool and in during an emergency the priority is not to loosen knots. But in general it could still prove to be a useful tool.
Anyway, the stainless steel marlin spike is very well made, with a radial knurling that allows to be pulled it out easily and with an ingenious locking system that is activated by pressing the instrument, once open, towards the handle. This locking system allows you to use the marlin spike (positioned at 90 ° with respect to the handle) easily and without moving it during hard uses.
The last tool featured on Police III is the tungsten carbide glass breaker located at the bottom of the handle. Even in this case it is possible to notice the good quality finishing of Extrema Ratio's machining, since the glass breaker is embedded inside a steel cylinder that encloses it and holds it between the steel folders. Only those who have tried to break a car windshield or a car window know how strong they are, and only then will realize how much is indispensable a glass breaker in emergency contex and urban rescue, where time is scarce, and any improvised support is not always immediatly available.
The multi-tool is provided with a practical black cordura sheath and reinforced with rigid plastic insert. It is designed to carry it on tactical belt or with MOLLE systems.
The weight of the instrument is remarkable (258 g), but given its sturdiness and reliability it can be an acceptable compromise.
To test the Police III efficiency in a rescue context and, more specifically, in the event of a car crash, we tested the safety cutter and the glass breaker, simulating their emergency use on a car.
The safety cutter is remarkably sharpened and it has a very effective blade shape. Indeed it is able to slip under the belt even when it is pulled tight and blocked (as a result of an accident). Once the blade is snapped in open position, thanks to the auto opening button easily reached with the thumb, the car safety belt can be quickly and easily cutted.
The second step is to get out of the vehicle through the car window, assuming the car door is locked up as a result of an accident and that there is no way to roll down the window (it often happens that the door is deformed or occur some damages to the opening system). In this case the glass breaker is a fundamental tool.
Tempered glass of car windows are designed and constructed in such a way that the strong tensions inside glass structure itself cause the instillation of cracks in all directions to break glass in very small non-sharpened fragments.
These car windows are, however, quite durable and not always in your car is available an improvised tool that can easily break them. The Police III has proved to be very effective and its glass breaker needed a single good blow to bring the window to the instant explosion.
This test, besides being extremely fun (who hasn't wanted to do this at least once ?!), highlights the actual utility of these tools that should normally be part of the car's equipment.
And finally, we tested the primary blade to check the factory sharpening quality. For this purpose, cutting tests have been carried out on various materials (such as paper, cardboard, leather and mooring ropes of various diameters). The factory sharpening has been made to perfection by Extreme Ratio.
The Police III by Extrema Ratio is a very interesting and innovative product. They have been able to combine an automatic component (the safety cutter with auto opening) together with the other accessories, in a relatively small space. The design is very eye-catching and, apart from some criticisms like the thumb-stud and perhaps the weight, this multi-tool (made with impeccable finishes and mechanical couplings) features many useful tools for emergency operations in urban context.
Producer: Extrema Ratio - www.extremaratio.com
steel: N690 (58 HRc), reverse tanto tip, full-flat grind
Finish: stone washed
Locking mechanism: Liner-lock
Blade length: 87 mm
Blade thickness: 3 mm
Steel: N690 (58 HRc)
Automatic opening mechanism
Blade length: 80 mm
Blade thickness: 2.5 mm
Glass breaker: tungsten carbide
Pocket Clip: stainless steel
Sheath: black Cordura
Overall length with primary blade opened: 220 mm
Handle: black anodized Anticordal aluminum
Weight: 258 g
Indicative price: 305 euro
Made in Italy
This article was published onto Italian magazine "Armi&Balistica" n. 27