Tops Knives F.O.R.K. IT

tops fork it
July 25, 2023  
Categories: Gear Curious

Sometimes you just gotta say FORK IT, right? Seems apropos if you’re using a tactical fork. Or an EDC fork. Well…an EDC or tactical spork anyway. Mad Duo

Tops Knives FORK IT

Do you know what real survival is? Dealing with toddlers on a daily basis. Don’t get me wrong, I love my kids and family but some days I feel like I’m in a survival course that involves a high-level psyop experiment. Tonight, we’re going to look at the TOPS Knives F.O.R.K. IT, which might help someone survive this sort of demanding psyop. Our T&E lab will be my house and two wild kids.

A tactical spork is even better than an EDC spork...right?

A tactical spork is even better than an EDC spork…right? This article originally ran in 2016.

The F.O.R.K. IT was designed by Leo Espinoza. The premise is simple: it’s something for the backpacker (or anyone looking for a multi-function tool) that can address simple tasks and not take much room. The F.O.R.K. IT covers small tasks one would encounter while camping. It can prepare tinder or pop a bottle, perform small cutting tasks, and serve as a spork for eating like a civilized person. I should’ve headed to the mountains to try out all the features, but I thought my kids would be better at evaluating such a robust tool.

Using a tactical spork on a kid's bowl of ramen noodles.

Using the Tops Knives tactical spork on a kid’s bowl of ramen noodles.

Scenario 1 – Ramen / Cup-Of-Noodles

On camping trips with the family, my kids love Cup-Of-Noodles for lunch. I figure it’s good they have a positive memory with this “food group” because they’ll live on it in college. I handed my oldest the F.O.R.K. IT with her ramen and she looked at me like I was punishing her. I told her she’d be eating the next few meals with this tool pretended it was a game and made up a story that involved an empowering heroine facing impossible odds, and claimed the world was depending on her. After she ate her lunch of plastic noodles I asked what she thought of the spork. She liked how deep the spoon part was, and that the teeth on the spork was good for grabbing noddles. She then commented on the whistle, which is attached to the sheath via a chain. I told her not to blow on it in the house, and she ran from the table blowing the whistle at full blast. Did I mention how powerful the whistle is yet?

Scenario 2 –  Cereal

My youngest wanted cereal one morning, so I thought it’d be a good chance to see how the F.O.R.K. IT worked with the toddler. When I handed her the bowl she asked if this was the whistle her sister was using while running from me yesterday. I told her not to blow the whistle or “the man” will come. Not sure who “the man” is, but it worked. I watched her eating the cereal from a distance, and she used the tool like any other spoon. But every two to four bites she’d stop and look at the kydex sheath that serves as a handle and protects your hand from the knife blade. She’d look at the sheath, then at me, at the sheath and then once again at me. I knew she was planning something but wasn’t sure what. Then, like a samurai from an Akira Kurosawa film, she unsheathed the blade. I casually walked over and said, “We don’t eat cereal with this part of the spoon.”

She looked at me holding the knife and said, “This is cool”. After disarming the toddler, I decided that 10 am is actually beer o’clock in some parts of the world. Cheers!

Scenario 3 – Don’t cut yourself

I used the knife portion of the F.O.R.K. IT for small cutting duties, and found it really comfortable to use. The ridged back and contours provide great grip. I even used it to spread Nutella on a rice cake for the wildlings of the house.

In all seriousness, the F.O.R.K. IT is a great tool and will travel with me on some future bike-packing trips. It’s small, light, and has the quality you’ve come to expect from TOPS.



Where to buy Mystery Ranch packs

⚠️ Some hyperlinks in this article may contain affiliate links. If you use them to make a purchase, we will receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. It’s just one way to Back the Bang. #backthebang 

Craig Metzger

Craig Metzger

About the Author

Craig Metzger is some sort of evil creative genius who enjoys everything from Billabong to ZevTech. He’s one of those dudes who mountain bikes, hikes and snowboards with the same enthusiasm he has for spending time on the range, offroading in Moab, fly-fishing and attending Renaissance Fairs. He’s definitely our first minion so far to have a subscription to Thrasher magazine. Kyle Lamb (the Viking Tactics Kyle Lamb) really does call him the Tactical Hippie, that’s a true story. Although we cannot confirm rumors that he played the role of Everett in Delta Farce, we can advise you to check out his work on his website or on his blog.


  1. Porkpie

    It’s made so when a right-hander is holding it as he might when eating soup or noodles that the sharp edge would be pressed against the skin of his hand. If it’s dull enough that that isn’t a problem, then it isn’t much of a knife, is it?

  2. Dan Barnes

    There one born every minute….. this is for folks with more money than experience. Larry is right ……

  3. Larry

    A nice design, but $100 for this camping tool? Come on TOPS, we know better than to waste a C note on something we can get in thinner, lighter metal for much less…and just as useful and durable, at our local camping store less than $15 at the most, normally less than $5.00.


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