I’ll admit it, the Buck TOPS CSAR-T (Combat Search and Rescue Tool) is not the first knife you think of when considering the best bushcraft knife. However, given its high utility, I’ve reviewed it here for your consideration.

Buck has a well-deserved reputation as one of the best knife makers in the world, and the Buck TOPS CSAR-T is a worthy addition to that legacy. The Buck TOPS CSAR-T might look small, but it packs a big punch. It was designed to give police and military personnel a trusted, secondary tool for survival in tough situations, but it’s an excellent addition to anyone’s personal tool supply as well.

From the tip of the Tanto blade to lanyard hole at the end of the handle, this knife is built for use.


10 inches
4.5 inches (4 1/2″)
Full Tang
Hollow grind Tanto
0.180 inches
Clip point, Tanto
Bead blasted (Zirblast)
G10 Rocky Mountain
Chicago screws
Sheath pocket
Hex bit compatible handle cut-out, impact tool, oxygen wrench/utility notches, and removable handles for spear lashing capability
Buck TOPS Fixed CSAR-T Knife

Benchmade Bushcrafter Sibert Buck TOPS CSAR-T Cold Steel Survival Rescue Knife Enzo Trapper ESEE 5 Fallkniven F1 Swedish Military Grohmann #4 Survival KaBar Becker BK2 Companion Mora Bushcraft Black Ontario Blackbird SK5 Schrade SCHF9 Extreme Survival Spyderco Bushcraft G10 TOPS Brothers of Bushcraft Fieldcraft

The CSAR-T offers a folded or fixed blade option. When compared to straight-bladed survival knives, the Buck TOPS CSAR-T might seem a little underwhelming, at least in its folded form. Unfold the blade and you’ll see what this knife truly offers, though. The Buck TOPS CSAR-T is all about functionality.

The blade length is 3.5 inches, and it unfolds easily from the handle. The thumb nub on the side of the blade ensures that opening the knife is easy with just one hand. The blade is made from 154CM steel, the same as several other high-end survival knives. This grade of steel offers an outstanding mixture of durability, corrosion resistance, edge holding ability and hardness, making it the perfect choice for a survival knife that will have to hold up in any situation the owner might end up in.

Buy it on Amazon – $93.40

The blade features a Tanto design, with the trademark snubbed edge. The Rocky Mountain Tread® G-10 handle design ensures that you have a good grip on the knife in all situations as well. The end of the knife features a lanyard hole so the blade can be secured with a cord to your wrist or anywhere else. Interestingly, the lanyard hole is also a hex driver, offering further utility for a variety of different situations. The folder version features a lock that prevents the blade from folding back on your fingers during use, but is easily unlocked with a finger and the knife can be closed with one hand.

What Is the Buck TOPS CSAR-T Good For?

The Buck TOPS CSAR-T is a very versatile blade. The folded version reduces to five-inches (when folded) which ensures that it can be easily carried on a day-to-day basis in any situation, which makes it a great addition for anyone. It can be carried in a pocket, a purse, on a lanyard, or by using the nylon sheathe and belt clip (stainless steel, reversible).

While it was designed for military and police specifications, the knife is an excellent survival tool for individuals as well. The solid stainless steel frame construction underlying the G10 handle scales means that the knife will hold up for years, even in harsh use, and the specially designed handle means you have an excellent grip whether you’re cutting through packing tape on a box or gutting a fish by the river. In camp or in town, the Buck TOPS CSAR-T has the flexibility, durability and ease of use you need.

Buck Knives

It’s difficult to think of a knife maker that has built a stronger reputation than Buck. The company has partnered with TOPS for other projects, and the Buck TOPS CSAR-T (Combat Search and Rescue Tool) highlights all the qualities of both knife makers. Buck produces both folding and fixed blade knives, and has become synonymous with locking blades designed not to fold back on the fingers of the user. In fact, it was the company’s lockable blade that truly built its reputation in the industry. Buck remains an American company, and provides its highly vaunted “Forever Warranty”, which also applies to the Buck TOPS CSAR-T.

Buy it on Amazon – $93.40

Here’s the Folder and Fixed models side-by-side

Image 31atrc644el-_sl160_ 41y0dqwojwl-_sl160_
Title Buck Tops/CSAR-T Knife (Black/Silver, 8 1/2-Inch) Buck TOPS Fixed CSAR-T Knife
Feature Blade Length: 3 1/2″ (8.9 cm); Length Closed: 5″ (12.7 cm)Blade Material: ATS-34Carry System: Black, heavy duty nylon, M.O.L.L.E. compatible sheathHandle Material: G-10Weight: 8.6 oz. (243.8 g) Blade Length: 4 1/2″ (11.4 cm)Blade Material: 420HCCarry System: Black, heavy duty nylon, M.O.L.L.E. compatible sheathHandle Material: G-10Weight: 14.0 oz. (249.5 g)
Size 8 1/2-Inch
Price $79.51 $84.99
Height 1.75 inch 2.19 inch
Weight 0.75 pound 0.64 pound
Width 2.81 inch 2.44 inch
Length 10.13 inch 11.44 inch
Reviews Read Reviews Read Reviews
Link More Info More Info

Product prices and availability are accurate as of Dec 3 15:20:30 EST but are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on the merchant site at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.

Here’s what people are saying about the Buck TOPS CSAR-T

I would not hesitate to pry or dig with this knife, then do some cutting like food, cord, wood or whatever. Your hands would have to be coated in grease before these grips would even think about slipping

When you pick it up, you can feel the full tang construction and the overall durability of the blade. This is a no-nonsense straight to the point general purpose blade that would work for just about any practical situation.

the deep choil and rocky mountain tread handle provide for an awesome grip. the fish tail pommel adds another layer of secureness in the hand. this is a BAD A$$ knife. i am not to crazy about the sheath. i would have preferred a regular belt loop as opposed to the velcro , but that is fixable .

About the author

Jack Thompson is a seasoned outdoorsman, bushcraft expert, and knife aficionado. With over a decade of wilderness experience, Jack is passionate about teaching others essential outdoor skills and providing insights on bushcraft knives. As a writer for Best Bushcraft Knife, he shares his knowledge and adventures, inspiring readers to embrace nature and thrive in the wild.