Evolution of a Knife Design: from ZT 0777 to Kershaw Natrix

It started with a challenge. But then, it often starts with a challenge.

That’s because  we are constantly challenging our designers to develop knives that will catch the attention of knife users, intriguing them with form and function alike.

This particular design began life in 2011 as the 0777. It featured our proprietary Composite Blade and marked the first—and only—time that we combined Devin Thomas herringbone Damascus with Vanex 35 stainless steel. It was also the first time we used a carbon fiber handle with a titanium Sub-Frame Lock. The patented Sub-Frame Lock enabled us to lighten and slim the handle and afforded us the freedom to give the lockbar a fluid, curving shape. The knife’s design was distinctive, eye-catching, absolutely unique—and ultimately became iconic.

The knife industry recognized that, too, and the 0777 was named the 2011 Knife of the Year at the Blade Show that year.

But that was only the beginning.

Due to the intricacies of its design and production, as well as the ultra-premium nature of the materials, the 0777 was a Limited Edition knife. We also produced it in different blade steels and finishes, also in very limited runs.

Yet it was such a popular design that we wanted more knife users to be able to enjoy it. So in 2013, we introduced the Zero Tolerance 0770, which was slightly smaller and featured an anodized aluminum handle. Today, that knife is still in the ZT line as the 0770CF, with carbon fiber handles.

Now the story gets even more interesting.

Because so many knife users were drawn to this ZT Originals knife, we decided to make this award-winning design even more widely available. So we brought it into our Kershaw line where we can produce greater quantities and design variations—so we can ensure there’s something to suit everyone who appreciates this distinctive design.

During 2018 we are rolling out a number of these 0777-inspired Kershaws. Dubbed the Natrix, they come in a variety of sizes and materials. The Natrix’s G10 handles come in black, green, and blue-gray with carbon fiber. One smaller Natrix has copper handles and upgraded D2 blade steel. Another, named the Bareknuckle, is set to debut in the fourth quarter of the year. It will be made in the USA and offers 14C28N blade steel with anodized aluminum handles.

In addition to these, you’ll also see Exclusive versions of the Natrix, which some of our authorized dealers commission as special editions that you can get only through them.

And all this is just the beginning for this award-winning design. While it began as a very exclusive knife, we now offer a variety of models that are both available and affordable. The story of the ZT Originals 0777, the Kershaw Originals Natrix, Bareknuckle—and their future descendants—underscores our commitment to producing knives that fit every budget, yet which still incorporate top-quality design, precision function, innovative technology, and have a solid dose of “wow, let me see that” EDC flair.

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