Super Kadet II Marking Knife Review - Canadian Woodworking Magazine

A beautifully made precision marking knife that will last a lifetime.

Super Kadet II Marking Knife

Super Kadet II Marking Knife

Marking knives are simple tools that are easy to use. But this simplicity belies the fact that they're indispensable for laying out precision cut lines. A well made knife will have a stiff blade that makes a thin, clearly defined score line in wood that's easy to see and deep enough that you can register the tip of your chisel in it. The blade will also be slim enough to mark out the narrowest dovetail pins.

Czeck Edge is a small, family owned business that manufactures a range of high quality marking tools – awls, bird cage awls, and marking knives – along with dovetail chisels, burnishers, a unique ruler stop.

What a feeling

The newest addition to the Czeck Edge line is the Super Kadet II, which I've had the pleasure of trying out over the past couple of weeks. The Super Kadet II looks as much like a fine writing instrument as it does a marking knife. It measures 7-5/8" overall and has a lovely 6-3/16" tapered Cocobolo handle that's about 1/2" diameter at its widest. A machined bronze ferrule with a narrow finger groove provides a comfortable grip, and a visually attractive transition between the blade and handle.

Solid tungsten carbide blade

But, what really sets this marking knife apart from anything else on the market is the solid tungsten carbide (TC) blade. You probably know of TC from planer and jointer blades, router bits, and saw blade teeth. It's one of the hardest, most durable, wear-resistant composite metals around. Unlike O1 tool steel, it will never rust. If you use the Super Kadet II exclusively as a marking knife, then the blade will likely last a lifetime. And, unless you're laying out cut lines hours a day, you'll probably never have to resharpen the blade.

Unlike HSS, TC can fracture if dropped from a distance on a hard surface, such as a concrete floor. So don't play darts with the 
Super Kadet II. I dropped the knife onto my workbench half a dozen times - no damage whatsoever. I also stand on an anti-fatigue mat at my workbench, so if I should drop any tool onto the floor it's unlikely to suffer any damage.

The blade on the Super Kadet II is 1/32" thick, 5/16" wide, and 1-7/16" long. In use it barely flexes, which you'll appreciate when laying out dovetails or running the blade along a straightedge. The spear point tip has an included angle of 44° with an edge bevel of 40°. What's nice about a spear point tip is that it can be used either with the right or left hand.

Scores a perfect line

The combination of a stiff blade and super sharp cutting edge results in a crisp, cleanly scored line both across and along the grain. You don't need to exert much pressure when using the knife. However, if you want a more deeply scored line exert a tad more downward pressure. In the photo above you can see the scored line made by the Kerf Kadet II in comparison to a pencil line.

Clean score lines on end grain

Even though you might usually use a marking gauge to lay out cut lines on end grain, in a pinch you can use the Kerf Kadet II. 

The perfect tool for laying out dovetails

One area in which the Kerf Kadet II really shines is laying out dovetails. The thin rigid blade does a much better job laying out the tail on the end of the tail board, and,as shown above, marking out the pins.

Elegant and functional

With the Super Kadet II you get an elegant and functional tool that will last a lifetime, one that will likely never need to be re-sharpened, and, best of all, a superb hand tool that you'll enjoy using every time you pick it up. Go ahead, pamper yourself.


  • Overall length: 7-5/8"
  • Blade length: 1-7/16"
  • Blade size: 1/32" x 5/16"
  • Blade material: Solid tungsten carbide
  • Handle material: Cocobolo
  • Ferrule: Machined bronze

COMPANY:Czeck Edge
MODEL:Super Kadet II
PRICE:$69 US (shipping approx $9.00)
SOURCE: Online 
You might also want to check out the Czeck Edge Carbide Bird Cage Awl 
November 2014

Carl Duguay
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