Knife & Gear Society is comprised of some of the industry’s best writers, from all walks of life. We are regularly adding to our team, and as we do the new contributors will be added here. Make sure to check back often. But, rest assured that we are currently working with some of the top names in the industry – most of whom our Editor has a long working relationship with. It is our goal to provide you with the best content possible.
Joshua Swanagon has studied survival in both urban and wilderness environments in Colorado and Michigan for most of his life, while also adding experience in harsher terrains abroad. He utilizes his experience and years of diverse martial arts and combatives training and real world application as a self-defense/combatives instructor, published freelance writer and Field Editor for various magazines – in the fields of knives, survival, self-defense and tactical subject matters. Joshua also brings with him his years of experience as Editor of, and Subject Matter Expert for, Knives Illustrated Magazine.Joshua on Knife Perspective Podcast – scroll to bottom of page for audioJoshua on TOPS Daily Grind Podcast
Read Joshua’s Stories >>On The Web: www.JSwanagon.comFacebook: www.Facebook.com/JSwanagon01Instagram: @JSwanagon01
Contributors are listed in alphabetical order, by last name.
Shane Adams is a native of North Georgia and has spent a lifetime cycling, hiking, paddling, and exploring. He currently works for ESEE Knives / Randall’s Adventure & Training as their Marketing Director/ Utility Player. Along with the rest of the RAT crew he routinely spends more than 100 days in the field teaching, learning, and is an active member of RATSAR. (RAT Search & Rescue).
Read Shane’s Stories >>On The Web: www.ESEEKnives.comFacebook: https://www.facebook.com/shaneadams90Instagram: @ShaneAdams90
Outdoor lover, photographer, small business owner and father of 4, Noah enjoys getting outside and traveling, as much as his schedule allows him.
Working in the firearms industry for over a decade now, he has written, done photography and shot video for several firearms publications. He enjoys hiking and has recently taken up hammock camping and kayaking.
He co-owns Wise Men Company, with a good friend, that makes and sells a robust line of EDC products.
He loves to read, learn, try new bourbon and share his adventures with friends.
Read Noah’s Stories >>On The Web: www.WiseMenCompany.comFacebook: https://www.facebook.com/nalkinburghInstagram: @NAlkinburgh
Armando Rafael Basulto is an avid and life-long outdoorsman, writer, photographer and hunter. His work has been featured in a wide variety of outdoor and action-lifestyle publications – including American Frontiersman, American Survival Guide, Ballistic, Knives Illustrated, Tactical Life, Survivor’s Edge, RECOIL Carnivore, and many others.
Over the years Mr. Basulto has developed working relationships with a diverse group of creative vendors and publishers in the outdoor industry. In addition, Mr. Basulto has co-authored a combatives manual for the US Special Operations community and has worked with a variety of European military units. Mr. Basulto holds undergraduate degrees from Montclair State University and NYU, as well as a Master’s degree from Fordham University.
Read Armando’s Stories >>On The Web: www.GracieNorthCarolina.comFacebook: https://www.facebook.com/armando.basulto.3Instagram: @Armando_Basulto
Dana Benner has been writing about all aspects of the outdoors, survival, history and culture for over 30 years. His work appears in regional and national publications.
Read Dana’s Stories >>
Adventurer, writer, photographer, gear designer and survival instructor for Randall’s Adventure & Training, Reuben has spent most of his life hiking and backpacking through the wildernesses of the world. He has traveled abroad in extreme environments, from Alaska to the desert heat of Egypt – as well as the humid conditions of Southeast Asia and South America. He continues studying primitive survival techniques, construction and uses of knives and edged tools from places such as: South America, Australia, Philippines, Thailand, New Zealand, and numerous countries in the South Pacific and Scandinavia. Reuben has published many articles on survival, knife and tool use, woodcraft, shelters, and remains a lifetime student of survival.
Read Reuben’s Stories >>Instagram: @ReubenBolieuInstagram: @AdventureFoodGuy
Jim Cobb is a recognized authority on disaster readiness. He has written several books and is also the Editor in Chief for Prepper Survival Guide magazine. He is a longtime collector of knives, EDC gear, and defense weapons. Jim lives in the upper Midwest with his wife, kids, and a motley crew of dogs and cats.
Read Jim’s Stories >>On The Web: www.SurvivalWeekly.comFacebook: https://www.Facebook.com/Survival.WeeklyInstagram: @JimCobbSurvival
Christopher Doner began his martial arts training in 1983 while growing up in Ohio. His passion for realistic training led him to Nebraska where he became a personal student of renowned martial artist, Robert Bussey. He earned black belts in both Robert Bussey’s Warrior International and Rosenbach Warrior Training Branches and ran an affiliated school in Omaha for several years.
In 1999 Doner began to train combatives under the tutelage of friend and former Army Ranger, Ethan Jensen. Doner holds instructor credentials in Jensen Knife Combatives and is…
a Certified Instructor of Martial Blade Concepts under Michael Janich.
In 2012 Doner was one of a handful of people personally selected by the legendary Kelly McCann to beta test McCann’s pilot Civilian Training Program. This opportunity led to further training with McCann and his Kembativz Brand organization. Always a student, Doner continues to seek out training to maintain and improve his skills and the skills of his students.
Doner is the owner and lead instructor of Martial Blade Concepts – Omaha, an officially recognized MBC school in Omaha, Nebraska. He is the Lead Edged Weapons Instructor and a Combatives/Tactics Instructor for Kris “Tanto” Paronto’s Batteline Tactical organization.
Doner is an experienced security professional with nearly twenty-five years of service in commercial, industrial and corporate settings. He served twelve years as an armed officer of a nuclear site protection team trained in various small arms techniques, tactics and procedures before returning to the corporate sector. Today, Doner is a Senior Specialist, Corporate Security & Safety for First National Bank of Omaha. In addition to his regular duties, he serves as a defensive-tactics instructor for the bank.
He is a freelance writer and photographer with work published in Knives Illustrated, Black Belt, Ninja Magazine and Fighting Stars.
Read Christopher’s Stories >>Facebook: https://www.Facebook.com/Christopher.DonerInstagram: @ChristopherDoner
Kevin Estela is a professional Bushcraft and Survival Instructor, Author, Martial Artist, and teacher. He is the former Lead Survival Instructor of the Wilderness Learning Center under Marty Simon and the Owner of Estela Wilderness Education. Kevin’s book, 101 Skills You Need to Survive in the Woods is an Amazon best seller and his 140 published print articles in 20 different magazines with many more online blog posts make up over a decade of his outdoor-industry writing career. Additionally, Kevin is a Sayoc Kali Senior-Level Associate Instructor and a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Purple Belt. He has trained under top firearms instructors and he enjoys shooting and marksmanship. A knife guy through and through, Kevin has been tapped by numerous companies to assist with knife designing and testing. His company motto was born of his no-nonsense outdoor experience in many countries around the globe, “Trusted information proven in the field”. When not wearing these hats, he is a mild-mannered high-school history teacher in a public school in Bristol, CT.
Read Kevin’s Stories >>On The Web: www.KevinEstela.comFacebook: www.Facebook.com/Estelawilded/Instagram: @EstelaWilded
Jason Houser has been involved in the outdoors from a very young age. Growing up in an outdoor family, he has had the opportunity to spend much of his time doing what he loves. Jason has a been a fulltime freelance outdoor writer since 2008 and is currently the host of two shows, Bone Wild TV and Trapping Across America TV, both air on the Pursuit Channel.
Read Jason’s Stories >>On The Web: www.JasonHouserOutdoors.comFacebook: www.Facebook.com/JasonHouserOutdoors/Instagram: @Bone_Wild_TVYouTube: Bone Wild TV
Michael Janich has been studying and teaching self-defense and the martial arts for more than 40 years. He has earned instructor’s credentials in American Self-Protection (ASP – an eclectic art that includes elements of judo, aikido, boxing, fencing and French Savate), the Filipino art of Serrada Eskrima, and Silat Concepts and has also trained extensively in a wide variety of other martial arts and self-defense systems. Janich is also one of the foremost modern authorities on handgun point shooting and is one of the few contemporary instructors to have been personally trained by the late close-combat legend Colonel Rex Applegate.
Janich served nine years in the U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command, including a three-year tour at the National Security Agency. He is a two-time graduate with honors of the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, California (Vietnamese…
www.MartialBladeConcepts.comFacebook: https://www.facebook.com/MartialBladeConceptsInstagram: @MartialBladeConcepts
Jonathan Kilburn is an avid outdoors-man, shooting sport enthusiast, martial artist, and wanna-be comedian. He has spent many years involved in outdoors hobbies, which has led him to bring the outdoors inside. While his focuses are on getting back outside, his home life revolves around preparing, making, and learning about ways to improve his skills in the field.When people close to Jonathan are asked to describe him, they often describe him as a “man’s man,” because of his involvement in the outdoors, firearms, knives, motorcycles, and various other activities. Despite this description, Jonathan doesn’t enjoy watching or playing team sports. No one is perfect.Besides his hobbies, Jonathan is deeply involved in the special needs community, in an effort to assist and help those who may need it most.
Before becoming the lead wilderness survival instructor for Randall’s Adventure & Training, Patrick Rollins was a Sheriff’s Deputy with the Whitfield County Sheriff’s Office (Georgia) – where he served as a Law Enforcement Instructor and member of the Whitfield County Sheriff’s Office Special Response Team (Entry and Sniper). Patrick is certified as a First Responder, Firearms Instructor, Glock Armorer, Rope Rescue Technician, Swiftwater Rescue Technician (Rescue 3 International), Wilderness First Responder (WFR) and NASAR SARTECH I. He has many hours of training in various skillsets – including woodland operations, wilderness survival training, land navigation, and tracking.
Read Patrick’s Stories >>Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100004218918812Instagram: @PatrickRollins230
Andy Roy started making knives in 2007 and went full time with his hobby on May 1, 2009, after a layoff. Since then he has made over 25,000 knives, mostly for the bushcrafting, hunting, and outdoors enthusiast type of customer.
He is a voting member of both the Knifemakers Guild and the Georgia Custom Knifemakers Guild. Today he enjoys making knives, teaching knifemaking to apprentices and he is one of the four knifemakers that own Pops Knife Supply.
Read Andy’s Stories >>On the Web: www.FiddlebackForge.comFacebook: www.facebook.com/FiddlebackForge/Instagram: @FiddlebackForge
Tim Stetzer lives in Western Pennsylvania with his wife, 2 kids, and too many cats. He has over two decades of law enforcement and criminal justice experience, and is a police academy instructor. He is also a veteran of both the Army and Air Force Reserves and has been an avid outdoorsman since his youth in Boy Scouts where he first became interested in knives. Tim has written for various gun, knife and outdoors publications since 2006 and has designed or helped design a number of custom and production knives during that time.
Read Tim’s Stories >>Facebook: www.facebook.com/tim.stetzerInstagram: @TimStetzer
SIJO Waysun Johnny Tsai is a Chicago native and the founder of C.U.M.A. Combatives and the C.U.M.A. Survival School. A Master level Instructor, Sijo has over 33 years of combined experience in teaching practical street defense in the civilian, military and law enforcement sectors and is considered one of the World’s foremost experts in practical street defense and Combatives. He is a published book, magazine and DVD author, as well as a highly established impact and edged weapons designer. Sijo has knife designs on the market and available through TOPS Knives, Slysteel Knives, Day One Gear, Combat Ready Knives and Grunt Style.
Read Johnny’s Stories >>Facebook: www.Facebook.com/BOOYAAAAKAAAAInstagram: @Waysun_Johnny_Tsai
Dwayne Unger is the owner/operator of Dwayne Unger Outdoors, an associate instructor with Estela Wilderness Education and online instructor for the Old World Alliance. Dwayne is also the 2018 Bladesports World Champion and winner of History Channel’s Forged in Fire: Knife or Death (S1,E4).
Dwayne is a part time custom knife maker and has been published by several online and print magazines.
Read Dwayne’s Stories >>On The Web: www.DwayneUnger.comFacebook: www.Facebook.com/groups/1682987731957609/Instagram: @DwayneUngerOutdoors
Steve is a Libra who likes playful puppies, long walks on the beach in the moonlight, and…whoops, wrong write-up!
Steve has spent more than twenty years in federal law enforcement. He’s been an incurable (and unrepentant) knife and gear guy his whole life, always seeking new innovations, as long as they actually solve a problem or improve performance. With that said, he has been known to buy new stuff just because he thought it was cool. He holds a special fixation on combat knives and knife combat, spending more time than he really ought, studying such things.
Steve continues to work routinely in an undercover capacity, so the accompanying photo may or may not be an accurate likeness.
Read Steve’s Stories >>