EKA Viking Combi Saw
The Viking Combi Saw from EKA is a rare tool today. A good folding saw that is tight when deployed and just feels solid in use is not always easy to find. Of the many models out there, this one has become a favorite to use. It’s only 21 inches long, 3/4 inch thick and 2 ½ inches wide at the folded handle. Compact and very light. I had a lesser version of this style kicking around in my truck for years before I broke it. The Viking Combi saw makes that other one look like a kid’s toy or something given out to people that may not take the greatest care with things. That’s because it was cheap; it had none of the small refinements that the Viking Combi does. EKA really got this right.
To use this saw, unfold the handle, and fold it around the long arm to the other side and then unfold the back handle to about ¾ open. This is where the improvements come into play, as the handle contains a pin for the saw blade to sit on. This pin has a groove the full circumference that helps hold the blade until the handle is folded up, bringing the blade under tension. The handle is nice and thick, and seems to be built solidly. At the top it has small ears the go around the top arm when folded to stay in place and to help keep your hand in one place during use.
The Viking saw comes with three blades, a wood blade, a bone blade, and a metal blade, all retained in the top arm of the saw. The pin that they are on, at first look, seems to be riveted in place, making it seemingly impossible to change the blades without first drilling the rivet out. It’s really a pin that’s been press fit into one side and fits to a hole on the other side, making for a simple but solid hinge point. The blades are swung up and around to place on the pin in the handle for use. Lesser versions will use screws threaded in the aluminum for the hinge and to hold the extra blades. This is one of the most annoying things with the inexpensive ones. The screws don’t hold the blades from bouncing around and making a lot of noise and sometimes they even work loose and will swing out while using the saw. The EKA Viking Combi folding saw holds the blades in the top arm with a spring that fits over the blades not in use, holding them tightly against a couple small pieces of foam rubber. They make no noise at all, nor do they come out of place unexpectedly.
The EKA Viking Combi Saw is solidly built and well thought out. It is light and compact, making it easy to throw into a pack for extended bushcrafting trips. At $80, it isn’t cheap, but this is a saw that I would fully expect to last a couple decades, doing everything from cutting trees blocking trails, to pruning fruit trees in the yard. EKA has been making knives since 1882, so they know a thing or two about longevity. You’ll find plenty of retailers for them locally and online, or you can read more about them here.
– Rob S.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received the EKA Viking Combi Saw for free from EKA, in consideration for review publication