KA-BAR’s “Lake Effect” ice scraper is a single molded piece of grivory, the same material used in many Cold Steel non-metallic shanks and shivs. The plastic has a pleasing, flat sort of texture to it that is comfortable in the hand and also reasonably sturdy. This is good,because if you’re going to actually use the Lake Effect as an ice scraper, it’s got to hold up.
There’s long been an arms race, of sorts, between the knife industry and public authorities. No sooner does some new, innocuous, not-a-weapon weapon get introduced than the race is on for public officials to recognize it. In other words, yes, you can buy a tool that is intended to look harmless, but it won’t be long before a police officer or security screener notices what you’re doing. Very few people are going to fall for the old gag that your Worden Travel Wrench is a wrench, or your ComTech stinger is a fertility symbol, or what have you. These devices are too well known and have been around for too long (although they are still nicely effective weapons).
The same holds true, then, for ice scrapers marketed as weapons. I remember one catalog entry, perhaps in the old Delta Press catalog, for a plastic ice scraper that carried the disclaimer, “Whatever you do, don’t hit anybody with this ice scraper, because you’d create a wound that would require x-number of stitches to close.” About all it didn’t include were the words “wink-wink, nudge-nudge.” That’s what the Lake Effect is, and that’s why it’s manufactured by a knife company: it’s intended as an impact weapon that masquerades as an ice scraper.
Perhaps because of this, the scraper is a little smaller, and therefore handier, than most ice scrapers you buy in Wal-Mart. It’s 6 inches by 5 inches by 3 inches. The handle is extremely comfortable because of it’s shaped like the grip of a Ka-Bar knife. It’s also nicely slim — not too small, and definitely not too large.
The edge on the scraper is thin enough and sharp enough that yes, you could lay open somebody’s scalp with this thing. The small size of the scraper makes it quite handy, both while wielding it and for storing it. I keep mine in the door pocket of my car… but not for self-defense. That’s the irony here: This weaponized ice scraper is actually a really good ice scraper.
The sharp, keen edge makes quick work of even the worst ice. My Lake Effect has cleared my windshield and side windows on many a frigid morning. So far, the grivory has held up very well.
Anyone living in cold climates is going to need an ice scraper eventually. The KA-BAR Lake Effect can do that job, but can also serve as an emergency self-defense weapon. Keeping one in your car, provided it is legal for you to do so, seems like a no-brainer to me.