I love my Ka-Bar TDI, it is very ergonomic and designed to be used weak-handed to help defend against gun grab situations. I modified it to make it easy to carry. Additionally, if you need a smaller EDC knife, I have a post on how to conceal the Ka Bar LDK.
The problem with the TDI is not the knife. It is an extremely well designed knife, with a nice Kydex sheath. In order to keep it inexpensive something had to give.
What “gave” was the belt clip.
I am not the only person to hate the mounting system on this knife. Ka-Bar even sells replacement mounting hardware to replace the belt clip when it invariably bends.
This post shows how I went about modifying a TDI knife with Tek Lok
The belt clip is just a thin piece of tempered steel. If the knife ever catches on something the loop will open up. Unfortunately, it will never bend back to hold the knife tightly again.
This problem with an otherwise fantastic knife has created a small cottage industry of custom sheathes for this knife.
However, I like the sheath that came with it so I decided to see if I could engineer a solution.
Introducing Tek Lok
I happened to have some Tek-Lok belt clips in the shop from an earlier project. It seemed like a perfect fit. A good knife mounted to a well thought out belt clip.
Its such a good idea that I was not the only person to think of if, however, most people used the large Tek-Loks, and drilled holes through their sheaths to mount the two together.
Looking at the sheath, the mount, and the two sizes of Tek-Loks, I saw that a small one fits flush against the old belt clip.
I cut off the belt clip from the mounting bracket and used my grinder to smooth everything out.
I then used a punch to mark out the 4 mounting holes.
After drilling out the 4 holes, I mounted the tek-lok to the mounting bracket made from the old belt clip, and then mounted the bracket to the sheath.
It does stick out a little more (about 1/8 inch) than the old system, but it is MUCH more secure.
One thing I need to mention is that the small tek-lok was not designed for use on wide belts like my 5.11 rigger belt so it does not “slide on”, I have to force the belt into the tek-lok, and then clamp it shut.
While this is not that difficult, it is an extra step when getting dressed. On the other hand, this makes the knife fixed and it does not move on your belt.
I am very pleased with this project, and it is one that I use quite a bit.