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What Is The Best Folding Knife? We Look At 5 Great Options

What is the best folding knife? A good knife is something that a lot of folks like to carry with them at all times. Not only as a possible defensive weapon, but often as a handy tool for various uses. As we mentioned in some of our earlier posts about fixed blade knives and tactical folding knives, there are a few things we like to keep in mind when looking for a new knife.

Quick Tips for Choosing a Knife

Everybody will have their own specific things that they will look out for when they are looking to acquire a new knife, but below we briefly list some of the main things we want to think about when buying a knife:

INTENDED USE

As we mentioned before, a knife is often designed with a specific use in mind. That could be to serve as a skinning knife, a general purpose knife or even a self-defence weapon. So before picking a knife that maybe just looks really cool or is available at a bargain price, be sure you know what you need a knife for and that the knife you are looking at will serve that purpose.

SIZE AND WEIGHT

The size and weight will be tied in to what you want to use the knife for. For example, if you want a knife that you will be able to chop some wood with, you probably want a big heavy knife. But if you plan to carry a knife on you regularly for long periods of time, a smaller and light knife will be better suited to you in the long run. A huge Rambo type knife might look really cool, but it might not be the most practical knife for you.

BLADE

A blade is one of the major factors that determine whether a knife can truly be considered as one of the best folding knife options or not. If the blade is of poor quality, the knife is going to be a dud! There are a lot of modern new materials out there that make blades a lot more durable and sharp. A lot of the best folding knife options tend to have aStainless Steel blade (which doesn’t rust as easily) with some form of Carbon coating to make it even stronger and more durable.

When it comes to blade shape, there are a bunch of shapes you can choose from. Of course, the purpose you want your knife for should determine the blade shape that you end up choosing.

Knife blade shapes

HANDLE

The handle and grip of your knife will have a huge influence on whether your knife will be effective or not. Most of the best folding knife options will have a textured handle for effective grip. The material of the grip could also be a factor. If you plan to do a lot of skinning, you probably don’t want a handle material that is going to be soaking up any blood!

The Top Five Folding Knives

Below we look at 5 foldings knives that we like and think are great. Are there other great knives out there that could also be argued to be the best folding knife? Of course! There are a lot of other knives out there and different folks have different preferences and needs when it comes to knives. So chances are there will be a few people who have a different opinion to ours. If you do have some thoughts, please do share them in the comments sections below and tell us which knife you think is the best folding knife.

When looking the the knives below, we considered how well the knives are constructed, practicallity and of course affordability.

TAC Force TF-705

There are a number of features to consider when determining which knife qualifies as the best folding knife. For the outdoor enthusiast, the TAC Force TF-705 is the ideal folding knife to carry along on camping trips and hiking excursions. For the person who spends a significant amount of time in the wilderness, the immensely sharp and sturdy blade of the TF-705 can prove extremely helpful to survival in case of an emergency.

One area in which the TAC Force TF-705 stands out in its quest to be named the best folding knife in its category is in its durability, which can be a problem with some folding knives. Actually, when discussing which knives qualify to be considered as the best folding knife, the first point of interest is durability. A knife is not worth much if it falls apart under the stress of practical use. The TF-705 does not have that problem.

The TF-705 comes in an assortment of colors. When opened, the knife is eight inches long. It comes with a belt clip, making it easy to carry along. Additionally, this knife comes with a number of other handy accessories, including a glass breaker and can opener. As far as the sharpness of the blade is concerned, not even repeated uses will cause the blade to dull significantly. The tactical applications of this particular knife are why we believe it deserves to be considered in the discussion of the best folding knife.

Brucks Dynasty Folding Hunter Knife

This knife sports a classic folding knife design, with a 3 ¾” 420HC steel blade that is extremely durable and immensely sharp. For the hunter, it is extremely important to have a knife that is sharp and durable, and this knife meets the challenge. The Brucks Dynasty Folding Hunter Knife not only has a folding blade that is sharp and durable, but the crescent design of the blade tip allows for highly detailed work. Another feature that qualifies this knife to be considered in our determination of the best folding knife is that the knife also has a lock-back design that guarantees maximum strength when working with the knife, as well as enhanced safety.

One of the nuanced details that we found alluring was the traditional style Dymondwood handle with brass bolsters, which offers the look and feel of older models, while providing the tactical application and durability of contemporary design.

This knife comes with its own leather sheath for style, protection and easy wearing, being able to be clipped directly onto the best.

The knife also comes with a lifetime warranty. The combination of traditional styling and practical application is what influenced our decision to include this classic in our determination of the best folding knife.

Smith & Wesson Border Guard 2 Rescue Knife

When it comes to tactical folding knives, we would be remiss if we did not include the Border Guard 2 in our discussion surrounding the best folding knife. This knife has a 440C 4.4-inch stainless steel blade, with an overall length of 10 inches. One of the features that stands out about this unique design is its balance. With a larger than normal blade, the glass breaker and the solid steel liners built into this knife, it weighs in around nine inches, yet the balance of the knife, when being used, is superb. The heftiness of the knife contributes to its ability to take on heavy duty tasks, but despite the weight, the deployment of the knife is exceptionally fast.

One part of the design that assists in the rapid deployment of the blade is the Teflon washers which provide added assistance when opening the blade. Actually, the sound that the knife makes during deployment is impressive in itself — a nuance that can be useful in the instance in which the knife may have to be used in self-defense.

This knife has a tanto blade that sports a saber grind, coated with black Teflon. The blood grooves that are cut into it contribute to its utility.

The handle is crafted with two independent slabs of machined aircraft aluminum that is textured to ensure the grip when handling the knife.

In the rare occasion in which a glass breaker and seatbelt cutter are needed, this knife is equipped and up to the task.

Ontario 8848 RAT Folding Knife

The Ontario 8848 RAT is strong and durable folding knife that has a high utility factor, meaning that it can be used for almost anything. The design and presentation of the knife are simple and straightforward; however, the usefulness of the knife is why we selected it as one of the top five folding knives currently on the market.

The design of this knife is focused on offering optimal comfort and performance. One of the unique features of this folding knife is the index finger groove located on the handle, which is designed to ensure that your hand remains in place when using the knife, which allows a greater level of control when cutting.

The handle is superbly designed, featuring an open-built lock frame that is made from nylon 6 scales.

Another benefit of this knife is that it is 100 ambidextrous, possessing dual thumb stubs, as well as a four-way reversible pocket clip. The knife is also recognized for its durability and strength, placing it squarely among the top five folding knives battling for supremacy as the best folding knife on the market.

Kershaw Ken Onion Blur Folding Knife

The Kershaw Blur is one of the most popular folding knife models on the market. When it comes to real folding knife enthusiast, the Kershaw Blur always finds its way into being considered as the best folding knife available on the open market. If a knife enthusiast does not currently own a Kershaw Blur, they have at least handled one at some point.

The thing that probably stands out most with this knife is the handle, which has what Kershaw refers to as “trac-tec” inserts. This hard rubber inlay is among the toughest material in use today, meaning that the handle is about as durable as they come.

With a closed length of 4.5 inches, this folding knife fits into that not too big, not too small category of folding knives. It is definitely designed to be used as a multipurpose utility knife. What is also impressive is the size of the blade, when considering the overall size of the knife. The blade measures 3.37 inches, and it is forged out of stainless steel. Despite the sizeable blade, this folding knife is still ideal for being placed in the pocket. Additionally, the nice swedge of the blade ensures that it has maximum penetration potential.

When it comes to a one-size-fits-all folding knife, the Kershaw Ken Onion Blur definitely makes a powerful argument for being considered as the best folding knife in that category.

Which Knife Do We Think Is The Best Folding Knife?

While each of these folding knives share some characteristics that are vital to establishing their worthiness to be considered as a part of our discussion about the best folding knife on the market, it is likely going to be their unique nuances that set them apart.

For instance, the TAC Force TF-705 bolsters a high level of functionality as a utility knife, making it ideal for camping, hiking and wilderness excursions. As an eight-inch knife, the TF-705 offers a good balance between length and concealability. The titanium blade design means that the blade will rarely have to be sharpened. When it comes to a practical utility knife, the TF-705 can hold its own.

The Brucks Dynasty Folding Knife, like the rest of the knives on this list, possesses an exceptional amount of durability. The unique design of the blade tip provides the capacity for the user to do immensely detailed work, but it is the lock-back design that provides the extra strength needed during the cutting process that adds specific value to this particular knife.

When it comes to aesthetics, the traditional style Dymondwood handle, with brass bolsters, definitely offers a sense of nostalgic flair.

For the person who is looking for optimal performance in a tactical design, the Smith & Wesson Border Guard 2 Rescue Knife answers the bell. With a 440C 4.4-inch stainless blade, and an overall length of 10 inches, this knife possesses the durability, balance and strength to perform tactical responsibilities. One of the things that stands out most with this knife is the in-hand balance of the knife, which is so important from a tactical perspective.

Another knife that serves as a highly effective utility instrument is the Ontario 8848 RAT Folding Knife. This knife can be used for virtually anything imaginable. With a straightforward, yet bold, design, the usefulness of this knife is readily apparent. In addition to offering optimal performance, the design also ensures optimal comfort, with its open-built lock frame.

The Kershaw Ken Onion Blur Folding Knife could be the most popular of all of the knives on this list, and there is good reason for this. From the “trac-tec” handle inserts, the durable material and the exceptional balance between blade and handle, this knife conceals well, deploys quickly and provides the balance that is so critical to precision. Although the blade only measures 3.37 inches, it is more than adequate to get the job done.

What Do You Think – What Is The Best Folding Knife?

Above we looked at 5 folding knives that we like and think are really great. But, there are a lot of other great knives out there and everyone his or her own unique preferences and needs. So it is most likely that there will be folks that think there are other knives out there that are in fact the best folding knife for their needs. If you do have another knife in mind that you think is the best folding knife, but which is not on our list, please feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below. We would love to hear from you!

We Pick Our Choice For The Best Fixed Blade Knife

What is the best fixed blade knife? Fixed blade knives are not generally most folks’ everyday carry knife, but rather are used by folks for outdoor activities or as a survival tool. A fixed blade knife is better suited to tasks such as skinning game, cutting wood or even when constructing a shelter. While you will get fixed blade knives that are designed to be used as a tactical weapons, fixed blade knives are generally more intended to serve as a tool than as a weapon. Before we jump into which knife we think is the best fixed blade knife, let us just have a look at some key things you need to keep in mind when choosing the best fixed blade knife for your own specific needs.

Some things we keep in mind when choosing a fixed blade knife

We all differ when it comes what we like and what our specific needs are for a fixed blade knife. But there are some key things we should think about when looking to acquire a new knife.

How Do You Plan To Use It?

Sure, a knife is basically a tool to cut things with. But what do you specifically want to do with your knife? Should it be a defensive weapon? Do you need to skin animals with it when you go hunting? Or do you perhaps want it as part of your survival kit? Knives are usually designed with a specific purpose in mind. So to be able to pick the right knife for your needs, be clear on what you want to do with it first.

How Big Should It Be?

The size of the knife is a “big” factor in how you plan to use your knife. If you want to have a knife to use in the woods chopping through wood and bushes, you would probably want a bigger knife with a bit more weight behind it. However if you want a knife that you can carry on you everyday, you would want to go for something smaller and lighter that is comfortable to carry.

Blade Type

Like we said earlier, knives are usually designed with a specific purpose in mind. And the blade is also shaped for that purpose. For example, you will notice skinning knives often have a gut hook, while self-defence knives might have Tanto blades. You can see the types of blade shapes you might expect to find in the image below.Knife blade shapes

Besides the shape of the blade, you also want to pay close attention to the material that the blade is made from. A lot of blades will be made from stainless steel, which does not rust easily (so perfect for fishing, etc), but might not be as strong and durable as some of the composite materials that are available today. Often the material that the blade is made from plays a big role in how expensive the knife will be.

A third factor to keep in mind is whether it is a Tang blade. A Tang blade extends all the way into the handle to make for a very strong and sturdy knife. Thus there is less chance of the blade snapping off if you have to apply a lot of pressure to the knife.

Knife Handle

It might seem obvious, but the handle of the knife plays a big part in how you will be able to effectively use a knife. If you want a knife that you can grip firmly, you should probably go with a knife that has a textured grip. If you need to use a knife that might often get wet or soaked in blood when you go hunting, you probably want a knife handle that is made from material that does not absorb moisture and is easy to clean.

Our Top Fixed Blade Knife Picks

Below we list and discuss 5 fixed blade knives that we really like. There will definitely be some folks who believe there are better knives that should in fact be called the best fixed blade knife. And they will probably have a good point too! The fact is there are a lot of of excellent knives out there and we only looked at 5 in this article. So if you want to tell us about a knife that you think is really excellent and is the best fixed blade knife, please feel free to share your opinion with us in the comments section. We would love to hear from you.

Morakniv-Companion-Outdoor-Stainless-4-1-Inch

When looking for the best fixed blade knife, the ability of its blade to cut is paramount, of course. But the knife is of little use if it can’t be gripped and wielded properly. To that end, this Morakniv product delivers superbly, with a patterned, high friction grip for easy gripping and holding. This knife’s 4″ blade is stainless steel, which combined with its “no slip grip” makes this a safe and reliable knife for working in wet brush and outdoor weather, and in cold outdoor temperatures. This knife retails at around fifteen dollars. This knife’s sheath is sturdy and stays firmly closed even if the sheath is worn upside down on a belt. Some users however, have reported issues with the sheath’s belt loop detaching from the belt. This issue might not make this Morakniv product the best fixed blade knife for users looking for a knife to use outside of camp because of the potential of losing it.

MTech USA-MT-086-Hunting-Straight-Overall

This MTech USA product fits the best fixed blade category largely for its blade sharpness, which allows it to cut through rope, small trees, and brush upon removal from its packaging, making this a good camp utility knife and survival tool. This is one of the larger knives in our best fixed blade knife comparison with a 7″ blade, and an overall 12″ length. This knife is heavy to handle and because of its blade’s thickness, not appropriate for fine cutting. The MT-086 retails for around sixteen dollars and comes with a stainless steel blade. This knife’s sheath is reliable for carrying, although not of the best quality. Because of this knife’s “non-ergonomic” grip, some users have experienced minor hand injuries when using it to perform certain tasks. Glove wearing is recommended when using this knife for extended periods.

Smith-Wesson-CKSUR1-Bullseye-Search And Rescue Fixed Blade Knife

This entry in our best fixed blade knife comparison is a product from one of America’s best gun makers, and like this company’s firearms, it’s a well made, no frills product, with a 5″ non-reflective stainless steel blade, and a rubberized handle. This product’s non-gloss blade finish protects it, and makes this product a good best fixed blade knife candidate in that it can do everything from cut tree limbs to dig holes. This knife also features a forward leaning metal cross guard. Some users have complained of wobbling in this area. This is one of the more expensive products reviewed here, retailing at around twenty-five dollars. It also features one of the nicer included knife sheaths seen here, with interior lining and metal reinforcements.

Buck-119BR-Special-Fixed-Blade

Definitely a contender for our “best fixed blade knife award”, the Buck 119BR is a beautifully designed, very versatile knife that is equally suitable for indoor and outdoor work. In addition to basic utility and camp use, this knife is suitable for carving and detailed work. Retailing at sixty five dollars, this 6″ blade Buck knife is not one of the cheaper knives described here, but in addition to the legendary Buck name, the purchaser gets a well balanced, comfortable to use full-tang knife, with a blade that is fastened with metal retainers at the pommel to prevent wobbling. This best fixed blade knife contender also comes with an attractive sheath made of genuine leather, that both protects and serves as a safe knife transport. Some users have reported receiving mail order knives that have blemished handles and grooves.

Schrade-SCHF9-Extreme-Survival-Carbon

Another nominee for best fixed blade knife, this import is a sturdy, effective knife for performing basic camp tasks like cording, rope cutting, skinning and hair removal, and tree limb and brush cutting. Despite the knife’s heavy weight, its balance is very good. This knife has a 6.5″ blade and a harder Kraton handle, which allows for comfortable holding and positioning for different hand sizes. This is the only knife reviewed here that can be used by either right or left handed users. The knife retails at around thirty-eight dollars and comes with a inexpensive but effective nylon sheath. It should be noted that some who have purchased through electronic retailers have noticed problems with blade, beveling, and grind. However, this appear to be more of a “batch” issue than a problem with the quality of the knife in general.

Which Knife Is The Best Fixed Blade Knife?

When reviewing options for the best fixed blade knife, the purchaser should consider where and how the knife will be used. All of the knives reviewed here are good general “practical” knives (i.e., they can be used for cording, rope, branch, and brush cutting and some minor butchering). There are some larger differences affecting handling, and in most cases, that is affected by handle construction and materials used. While these products run the pricing gamut and offer some name brands, those factors don’t seem to play much of a part in determining the best fixed blade knife here. The Morakniv-Companion-Outdoor-Stainless-4-1-Inch is a inexpensive, “no-frills” fixed blade knife, but it is also a sturdy, reliable camp utility knife, with a no friction handle that allows for safer handling. This makes it an especially useful knife for camping in cold, wet weather. The largest complaint of users is this knife’s sheath, which “pops off” belts without warning, usually when the user is moving from a crouching or sitting to a standing position or vice versa. This issue seems to result in more lost knives than a safety issue, however.

The MTech USA-MT-086-Hunting-Straight-Overall fixed blade knife is roughly the same price as the above described Morakniv, and is useful for performing the same around camp functions. This is also a larger and heavier knife with a longer blade, and a number of users, especially those with smaller hands, find this knife harder to grip and use. Considering what a fixed blade knife is used for around camp, its 7″ blade may be more than is necessary, and the greatest use of this knife may be for defense or as a deterrent. Another drawback to using this knife as a utility tool is its handle grip. Users have reported having skin rubbed from the palms of their hands when attempting to use this knife for wood chopping, etc. While this knife can certainly be used for such tasks, glove wearing while doing so is recommended.

The Smith-Wesson-CKSUR1-Bullseye-Search And Rescue Fixed Blade Knife is an overall good utility knife with a protected, non-gloss blade that comes in handy for digging without blade damage among the other functions that it performs. It also offers the nicest non-leather knife sheath among the products here. Some users have reported minor use issues here with this knife’s forward leaning cross guard, which at least gives the sensation of being loose when used.

The most expensive knife reviewed here, the Buck-119BR-Special-Fixed-Blade is also the most versatile knife that we’ve looked at. This knife can be used effectively for close work, such as carving and whittling, and comes with a superior quality sheath. Some online purchasers have complained of blemishing on the blade and grooves. It should be noted that these blemishes have no effect on this knife’s quality or effectiveness. But if purchasers are buying it for a display, they may want to consider a retailer where it can be examined before purchase.

The Schrade-SCHF9-Extreme-Survival-Carbon fixed blade knife is a little pricy for a “no-frills” utility knife, but this import is well balanced, and has the best handle material of the lot. The Schrade’s Kraton covered handle allows for a safer and more comfortable grip, and can accommodate more hand positions in working with this knife. The sheath it comes with is an unimpressive and inexpensive nylon affair, but then again, the sheath is the least of your concerns in purchasing a knife. What is more of a concern with this brand are some complaints from purchasers who bought this particular model from major online retailers and claim that the knife arrived defective. Inconsistent blade thickness, beveling, and grooving were the issues found when the knife was removed from packaging. While these issues appear to be limited to a single lot, purchasers may want to limit online knife purchasing to large retailers to guarantee replacement or refund, especially with imported products.

So which knife would we choose?

If the knife purchaser is looking for a inexpensive but quality fixed blade for basic camping and survival use, than the Morakniv is a good choice. But among the contenders reviewed here, the best fixed blade knife in terms of safety, reliability, handling, and versatility, is the Buck 119BR. While this is the most expensive of the knifes examined here, it offers superior workmanship, stability in handling, a wide variety in use options, and a lifetime guarantee from one of the leading manufacturers in the industry. So while the purchaser must offer up more money for this product, given how important a good knife can be for backcountry camping and survivalist living, the “edge” it offers is an investment well worth making.

What Do You Think – What Is The Best Fixed Blade Knife?

Did we not list some knives that some folks could rightfully argue is the best fixed blade knife? Of course! We are only human and there are many great knives out there. Add to that that everyone is different and would have their own unique preferences and requirements, it makes it impossible to identify a fixed blade knife that you can say is without a doubt the best fixed blade knife out there! So if you have some thoughts on a knife that you believe is in fact the ultimate fixed blade knife, please share your thoughts with us in the comments section below. We would love to hear from you!

Quick Tips For Choosing a Knife For Self Defense

This article was contributed by James Petzke, the founder of Knife Den.

Buying a knife for self defense is a decision worth taking your time to make. After all, you are buying a knife that just might save your life – or the life of someone you love – one day, and you want to feel like you can trust it with your life. Also, a personal knife can serve as an excellent survival tool in other situations – for instance, during natural disasters and power outages. In this post, learn tips on the best way to choose a knife for self defense.

Tip #1: Opt for simplicity of design.

In a self defense or survival situation, you don’t want to find yourself fumbling to open your knife or to find the knife amidst a bunch of other cool gadgets. You want to have it, blade ready, in hand in a few seconds or less. If you decide to go with a folding knife, choose a knife that offers you a one-hand opening so you can be using the other hand to defend yourself.

Tip #2: Choose a fixed blade.

While there is some inherent safety value in having a knife that can fold for carrying, a sturdy knife sheath can accomplish the same and won’t leave you vulnerable in self defense situations. This is important because the fold in the knife can buckle just when you need it most, leaving you defenseless. A fixed blade knife carries no such risk.

Tip #3: Look for a single piece (“full tang”) blade with a firm handle.

When the blade and handle are constructed from one single continuous piece of material, you have a nearly unbreakable knife. You can see if the knife is a single piece by looking at the handle to see if the metal from the blade continues to run all the way through to the end.

Also, make sure the blade is firmly affixed in the handle so that it does not have any “play” (make any movement) when you use it.

Tip #4: Be sure your knife has a very sharp pointed tip.

While a knife with a curved or flat tip might look intimidating, it is much less practical for multi-purpose use. Also, many self defense manoeuvres rely on thrusting or stabbing, which only a sharp pointed tip will give you.

Knife blade shapes

Tip #5: Choose your blade size carefully.

Choosing a knife size is a very personal choice. Your hand size and width, finger length, overall arm and hand strength and carrying preferences will all factor in to what size of knife is most comfortable for you to carry with you.

There is an art to choosing a knife that is not too long and heavy for sustained use, but also choosing a knife that is not to short to do any real damage if damage is called for. The best way to make this choice is to just try different sizes out to see what works for you personally.

Tip #6: Select a single edge blade.

Double edge blades are more dangerous for you to use because of the tendency most people have to rest their thumb on the back of the knife while using it. If you have this habit, untraining yourself will likely be more difficult than you anticipate and you may get cut while in the process.

As well, double edged blades are much less useful for other tasks if you are seeking a multi-purpose knife.

Tip #7: Be sure your knife can be easily concealed.

While you may have the best of intentions for purchasing a self defense knife, there are still those who may act differently towards you if they see you are carrying a knife.

For this reason, it is best to ensure the knife you buy for self defense can be easily concealed in a pocket, under your clothing or in some other way.

Tip #8: Check the warranty and customer reviews before you purchase the knife.

The warranty should cover knife maintenance, any actions that invalidate the warranty, blade sharpening and basic repairs. Any knife worth the money should come with a warranty that at least covers these points.

In the same way, be sure to read user reviews to find out if the knife really is as good as its manufacturer claims. If you are buying a folding knife, you want to know it will stay folded until you want it to open. If you are buying a reputed “very sharp” bladed knife, you want to know it won’t dull out after a few uses.

Tip #9: Be aware of legality issues where you live.

There are some types of knives that are illegal in some geographic areas (a switchblade is a good example of one type). So before you spend money on a self defense knife, be sure you know whether it is legal out of the box to carry it, if you need a special permit or training or if it is flat out illegal.

James Petzke is the founder of Knife Den, a site that is dedicated to being the best resource online for information about knives of all kinds. It has buyer’s guides, reviews, and information about knife laws in every state in the US.

What Is The Best EDC Knife?

Most of us have things we carry with us everyday of our lives, whether it be a handgun for self-defense or a flashlight. A whole industry seems to have sprung up around “everyday carry” or EDC. One of those things that a lot of people carry with them everyday is a knife. Different people will have different needs for carrying a knife, such as maybe as a self-defense weapon, however for us an EDC knife is more of a tool than necessarily a weapon (although it can certainly be both). There are a lot of knives out there that are great (and some not so great) EDC knives. So today we want to look at some of the popular knives to try and figure out which knife we think is the best EDC knife for our needs.

What we look for in a EDC knife

Let us just also start off by saying that we here at Smoking Barrel USA are not knife experts. We love a good knife, but in terms of the science and details of what makes a knife truly great there are some real experts out there that really know what goes into a really good knife. For that reason we refer you to some of their expert reviews on Youtube in the sections below.

However, there are some key factors that we think about when we want to buy the best EDC knife for our needs.

Quality blade

Knife Blade ShapesThe blade of a knife is what will largely determine the success of the knife. There are a few factors that need to be considered when it comes to blades, such as the style of blade (tanto vs drop point vs clip point, etc) and the material from which the blade is made. There are a lot of different types of materials from which knife blades can be made, so for the purpose of this article we won’t go into that much detail. But you can check out this useful page from KnifeCenter.com that describes the various blade materials out there – here. When it comes to the best EDC knife options, most of the top knives will have a stainless-steel blade that is hard and corrosion resistant.

Made to last

An EDC knife is a tool that will have to work hard on a daily basis. So it needs to be built to be able to withstand whatever work you through at it. Besides the blade quality, we also like to look at the overall build quality of the knife. Is the handle made from flimsy plastic that will scratch easily? How is the knife held together? Will the blade locking mechanism stop working after a few uses? How easy is it to maintain the knife?

Size and Weight

The best EDC knife for your needs will likely be one that you won’t even realise is there if it is in your pocket. So when it comes to an EDC knife we want something that is not too large and definitely not too heavy. With modern materials, EDC knives are being made from very light-weight, yet strong, materials. The ideal size and weight of a knife will differ from person to person. Some bigger guys want a nice hefty knife that will fit their bigger hands well, while some folks want a really slim knife that won’t leave much of an imprint when it is in their pockets. It really depends on your personal preferences.

Price

Knives can be expensive…really expensive! But an EDC knife is supposed to be an everyday tool that can take a beating. For us, the best EDC knife is not necessarily the most expensive knife. We would rather go for a reasonably priced knife that has adequate quality to get the job done. We generally aim for knives that fall in the $20 to $40 range. At that range, we won’t feel too bad if the knife gets a scuff or even a bit damaged during daily use.

5 EDC choices to consider

Below we list and discuss our picks for the 5 best EDC knife options out there. For each knife we considered the overall quality of the knife’s construction, the blade, grip, funcationality, etc.

Kershaw 1555TI Cryo SpeedSafe Folding Knife

This knife is designated to be a Rick Hinderer designed knife. From the official Rick Hinderer website it is clear that as a former fire fighter and EMT, Rick designs knives with every day carry in mind.

The blade is a non-serrated modified drop point with a beautiful profile. It is made from 8Cr13MoV stainless steel and is coated with Titanium carbo-nitrade, which enhances the hardness and corrosion resistance of the blade. For secure blade lock up, the Cryo offers a tough frame lock with lockbar stabilization. The Cryo also features Kershaw’s SpeedSafe assisted opening for fast and easy one-handed opening. Access it with either the built-in flipper or the thumbstud. One thing about the blade that some folks would have liked to have is a bit of a serration to help with cutting stubborn materials.

The knife is a little on the heavy side at 4.1 oz, however the thin handle ensures that it is not too bulky to carry it comfortably and inconspicuously in your pocket.

Similar to the blade, the handle is made from 8Cr13MoV stainless steel and is coated with Titanium carbo-nitrade. While the handle is on the thin side, it does have ridges for extra grip. However we wouldn’t be very confident of good grip in wet conditions with this knife. However the Kershaw 1555G10 Cryo G10 is the same design, but has a G-10 grip.

An added bonus for lefties is that you can switch clip to make it left-hand carry. You can also adjust it to be either tip-up or tip-down carry.

For a full review of the Kershaw Cryo 1555TI knife, check out the video below:

Spyderco Tenacious Plain Edge Knife

The Spyderco Tenacious is probably one of the knives you will find on most “The best EDC knife is…” lists on the net. And rightfully so. It is a hugely popular knife that has served many people faithfully.

Similar to the Kershaw, the Spyderco’s blade is made from 8Cr13MoV stainless steel. However different to the Kershaw, the Spyderco does not have a Titanium carbo-nitrade coating to enhances the hardness and corrosion resistance of the blade. The blade is leaf-shaped and ground flat from spine to cutting edge for cutting performance. The blade’s shape coupled with an oversized Spyderco Round Hole and textured spine jimping allow you to open the blade and position your thumb on the spine in slip-proof confidence ready for work.

The grip is made from G-10, which is a fiberglass based laminate that is very hard, lightweight, and strong. Surface texture is added in the form of checkering. G-10 is an ideal material for knife grips because of its ruggedness and lightweight.

The Spyderco also lets you adjust how you carry your knife (left-hand/right-hand and tip-up/tip-down).

For a full review of the Spyderco Tenacious knife, check out the video below:

Columbia River Knife and Tool M16-10KZ

If you want a more tactical type of knife, then this knife from Columbia River Knife and Tool (CRKT) might be the best EDC knife option for your needs.

The blade is a Tanto style blade that is made from black coated AUS-4 high-carbon stainless-steel. Different to the Kershaw and Spyderco, the CRKT has a serrated edge on the blade which can come in handy for really tough cutting jobs (example to cut through cord, webbing, etc). The blade is opened using the CRKT Carson Flipper. When the blade is deployed it locks into place with the AutoLAWKS™ safety. AutoLAWKS™ automatically sets a pin between the locking liner and the frame. This pin acts as an additional layer of safety, so the locking liner is less likely to disengage during use.

The handle of the knife is made from glass filled nylon. It is not the most textured grip ever, but it should get the job done for every day carry purposes. As far as weight goes, at 2.3 oz it is much lighter than the Kershaw and Spyderco options.

The clip on this knife cannot be altered and adjusted like the Kershaw and Spyderco knives’ clips can.

For a full review of the CRKT M16-10KZ knife, check out the video below:

Buck Knives Vantage Select

This is the only knife on our list of the best EDC knife options that is made in the US (the other knives are made in China).

The blade is a drop point blade and is made from 420C steel. It has a blade hole to assist with one handed opening (similar to the Spyderco, but not as big a hole), but has not jimping.

We really like the handle of the Vantage. It is a black nylon handle that has grooves in for good grip. It is also ergonomical, so should feel pretty good in your hands. The clip cannot do a four way adjustment like some of the other knives can, but it is a really solid clip that feels good and look good when you clip your knife into your pocket.

One thing that has been noted for the Buck Vantage Select seems to be the quality control. A few users have complained about the out-of-box quality of the knife and you will see in the video below there has been some concerns around the centring of the blade. Of course Buck does have a life time warranty on this knife, so if you do decide to get this knife and it is a dud….send it back and have them fix it!

For a full review of the Buck Vantage Select knife, check out the video below:

Ontario 8848 RAT Folding Knife

The RAT 1 from Ontario is the heaviest knife on our list, weighing in at 5 oz. But don’t let the weight put you off just yet, because this is a great EDC knife.

The blade is a clip point blade and is made from AUS-8 steel, which will be a bit of a problem if you have to use your knife in wet conditions. AUS-8 is a good type of steel, however it is not the most corrosion resistant steel out there. The blade is pretty sharp out the box. You can get the blade in the Satin finish (as shown in the pic above) or in the more tacticool looking black option

As with the other knives, it has a thumbstud for easy one-handed opening and employs a liner-lock to secure the blade in place when it is deployed. Similar to a few of the other knives, the clip on the handle is four way adjustable (tip-up/tip-down, left-handed/right-handed).

The grip is ergonomical and textured plastic. It is not as good as perhaps something with G-10 grips on it, but for an everyday workhorse at this price it is too be expected.

Build quality on this knife is pretty solid (which is why the knife is a bit heavier than others) with little to no blade play.

For a full review of the Ontario RAT 1 knife, check out the video below:

Which Knife Would We Choose As the Best EDC knife?

Let’s recap the knives discussed above to compare them to each other and try to figure out which one of them will be the best EDC knife for our needs.

The Kershaw Cryo knife is a nice looking knife at a very reasonable price. The knife is not too big, while still having an adequate blade to serve as the tool that you need it for. The blade is made from coated stainless steel, which should serve you well and keep a decent edge. However we would like a better grip on the handle for our choice EDC knife. If you want a solid knife for a good price, the is probably one of the best budget EDC knife options out there.

The Spyderco Tenacious is a popular knife that you will find on most people’s list of “the best EDC knife options”. The Sypderco’s blade is made from the same type of steel as the Kershaw, however it does not have the added coating that the Kershaw has. What we like about the Spyderco more than the Kershaw is the grippy handle that the Spyderco has thanks to the G-10 material. Overall, the Spyderco is an excellent knife that is really well made and has a solid blade. You cannot go wrong if you were to go the Spyderco route.

The CRKT M16-10KZ is a light-weight tactical style folding knife. It is made from similar steel as the Kershaw and Syderco, but is a Tanto styled blade, which is very sturdy and sharp. If you want a tactical style knife for EDC, then this is a good choice to go with.

The Buck Vantage is a nice looking knife with a handle that we really like. It is very similarly priced to the other knives, however this knife is made in the US and also has a life time warranty on it. There have been some concerns about quality control on these knives, but hopefully Buck has sorted that out by now.

The Ontario RAT 1 is a hefty workhorse type knife. The blade is really sharp right out of the box, however as it is made from AUS-8 steel it might get rusty if you tend to use it in wet conditions often. Overall build and quality of this knife is excellent.

So which knife would we choose?

There really are some awesome knives out there. The 5 knives we discuss above each have their unique selling point that make them contenders to be called the best EDC knife in our eyes. To recap, when we are looking to buy a EDC knife, we want something that has a good blade, is constructed well, fits well in our pocket for comfortable carry and is not too expensive. If we take those points into consideration, we would pick the Kershaw 1555TI. It is really well priced, we like the blade style and the fact that it has Titanium carbo-nitrade coating on it. While we would like a grippier handle, the thin handle does make for a low profile knife that will sit well in your pocket.

What do you think – what is the best EDC knife?

The knives we discussed above are some of the knives that we really like as EDC knives. However we know there are A LOT of great EDC knives out there and different folks will have different opinions on what they think the best EDC knife is. So if you have some thoughts on the matter, please share your thoughts on what you think the best EDC knife is in the comments section below.

What Is The Best Tactical Knife? We Look At 5 Great Options

CHOOSING THE BEST TACTICAL KNIFE FOR YOUR NEEDS

Before we start talking about the best tactical knife on the market today, let’s go through what exactly makes a knife ‘tactical’. Many manufacturers can tack on the description of ‘tactical’, but this is sometimes just marketing and hype. Add to that the fact that what may be a tactical knife for one person may not be so for a second person, and you will only end up making costly mistakes when buying the best tactical knife for yourself if you don’t understand truly what a tactical knife is, and what it can do for you personally.

What is a tactical knife?

We look at 7 different aspects you need to consider when choosing the best tactical knife for your needs:

  • Knife purpose and design – The needs of the best tactical knife can differ vastly from one person to another. Someone who can forsee using a tactical knife for emergency rescues will have different needs to someone who envisages using a tactical knife as a utility tool. An undercover cop who regularly goes into hostile environments that require him to use his knife as a weapon against would-be assailants would have different needs too. Asking yourself why you are buying a tactical knife, and what tasks you envisage accomplishing will help you greatly in making the right choice when it comes to purchasing. The design of the best tactical knife for you will then naturally follow through from its purpose. The hunter and outdoorsy person may identity the need for a heavy, robust knife which, despite being excellent, will be shunned by the undercover cop who would not want to carry a heavy knife with him all day (no matter how good a knife is, if you can’t or are unwilling to carry it, then it simply will not be to hand when you need it most).
  • Ergonomics – The way a knife feels in your hand is very important when it comes to whether you are likely to use. It needs to feel comfortable in your hand. More specifically, it needs to feel comfortable whilst you are completing tasks that you expect to complete with your knife i.e. comfortable under stress. The handle must feel natural to your hand and there should be no sharp corners or pinch points. Also, does it remain comfortable in different positions? Can you use it comfortably with a forward grip, where the blade comes out of the top of your closed fist, as well as reverse grip, where the blade comes out of the bottom of your closed fist? Look out for gentle finger placements (but be wary of very pronounced grooves which can force your fingers into positions that feel unnatural for you). The handle needs to be big enough to feel that your grip is ‘substantial’ without the handle being too big where you struggle to grip. Ultimately, the best tactical knife will feel like it simply ‘fits’ you when it comes to weight, size and shape.
  • Size – This will also follow through from you identifying the purpose of your tactical knife. A fisherman may love a long or broad knife that helps him with nets, tackle etc, but no matter how good it is, it is unlikely to be found on someone carrying a knife for self-defence purposes.
  • Blade material– Stainless steel products are boasted quite frequently for many products, but when it comes to knives it’s generally seen as beneficial because they are more resistant to the wear and tear of frequent use. They’re resistant to rust and water damage, and they’re easy to sharpen. However, they lose their edge quite frequently. Despite the name, stainless steel is also susceptible to stains. Carbon blades are tougher than stainless steel, but they are highly susceptible to rust and stains. They’re also more difficult to sharpen, but they don’t dull nearly as easily as stainless steel.
  • Knife Blade ShapesDesign of the blade – The best tactical knife should have a sharp cutting edge and point. We prefer a thick, strong point as small, needle-like points could be easily damaged if you use your knife to poke or dig into something. If you envisage using your tactical knife for cutting cloth or webbing, look for curved cutting edges. Also, ensure that your chosen knife can be easily sharpened. All blades will dull over time, no matter what a manufacturer will state in their marketing, and you don’t want to have to buy some obscure knife sharpener at a later date as you found out after your purchase that your chosen tactical knife needs specialist sharpening tools. We are also fans of blades with serrated edges, as these blades can cut even when dull – ideal for when you’ve forgotten to sharpen your blade. But be aware, serrated edges are usually more difficult to sharpen.
  • Handle material – You need materials that will not absorb moisture (unless you expect to be always in dry environments – highly unlikely as most places will endure some rain), and materials that will not crack or shrink. Natural materials, such as wood, ivory or bone will absorb water over time, so keep this in mind. Many of the best tactical knife options use Kraton, which is a rubber-like substance used on some tactical knives. It’s loved by a lot of people as it weathers better than natural materials. But keep in mind, it does still deteriorate over time. Nylon is also a good, robust option. Metal handles are the most robust and can last a lifetime. But they will make the overall weight of your tactical knife heavier, so keep this in mind when thinking about the tasks you want to perform. Also, metal handles can be slippery when wet, so if you expect to be in wet environments, look for metal handles with textures or chequered surfaces. Or opt for non-metal handles made from good quality polymers and composites.
  • Options for knife carry – Ask yourself how you would like to carry your tactical knife. On your belt? Clipped onto a pocket? There is no ‘wrong’ way of carrying. Pick the option that is most comfortable for you and stick with it. Changing up where you carry will cause confusion and possibly vital seconds as you work out where your knife is. There are many tactical knife sheaths made from nylon, Kydex and leather that you can use to carry on a belt. If you opt to clip your knife onto you, look for tactical knives that have spring clips that can be mounted onto the knife handle.

5 GREAT TACTICAL KNIFE OPTIONS

So now that you have a greater understanding on what makes a knife tactical for you, what is the best tactical knife on the market today? Here is a list of 5 of the best tactical knife options:

KA-BAR #1213 Black Straight Edge Knife / Hard Sheath

This is the second most expensive item on our best tactical knife list, and has a fixed plain edge blade made from 1095 carbon steel, with a Kraton handle, and has an overall length of 11.75 inches (blade is 7 inches long). It comes with a Kydex sheath for easy carry on belts.

Kraton is known for being a robust material that can be gripped well and is slip resistant. Of course, it will not weather as well as metal handles, but Kraton will last longer than leather, as well as other natural materials. We really liked the butt of this tactical knife too, as it is quite large and solid, allowing you to use to as a hammer, if needed.

The 1095 carbon steel blade is very sharp and will make light work of any tasks related to fishing, hunting, or other tasks in the great outdoors. We did find the blade a little difficult to sharpen, but knives in this category tend to have this issue in general. We recommend using a coarse sharpener. The carry sheath is one of the best we have ever seen. It is made from tough, durable plastic that grips the knife securely into it. Simply put, you can rely on the sheath to ensure your knife never falls out, even when bent over or crouched – ideal for hiking, hunting and fishing. You cannot move the knife out of the sheath unless you grasp the handle firmly and pull. There are also a lot of handy holes for straps, ensuring you create the best carry option that is comfortable for you.

Morakniv Bushcraft Carbon Black Tactical Knife with 0.125/4.3-Inch Carbon Steel Blade and Plastic Sheath

This is one our mid-priced items on our best tactical knife list, and features a thick carbon steel blade with an anti-corrosive black coating (tungsten), and an ergonomic plastic handle coated with a high friction rubber grip.  Overall length is 9.1 inches (blade length is 4.3 inches).

Carbon steel is tougher and sharper than stainless steel, so this knife has a very sharp edge, whilst also being easily sharpened. We welcome the tungsten coating, which will mean that anyone who is worried about their blade getting rusty in wet conditions can rest easy knowing this blade will resist rust (although the manufacturers do recommend you wipe the blade clean after every use and add oil to keep it corrosion free). The blade is also annealed (a process where a metal is heated to a certain temperature and then allowed to slowly cool) which allows this blade to withstand stress, such as when batoning (splitting or cutting wood). We really liked how the spine of the blade has been ground especially for use with a fire starter. What’s more, the blade has a Scandi grind, which allows it to bite into surfaces and cut without slipping, whilst not getting stuck, and is long enough to carve with.

Grip is further enhanced with the high friction rubber grip which we found gave great control of the blade, but starts to wear with use. We also did not like the finger choil as it meant we had to grip the knife in one way only. We’re sure the manufacturers felt this made this tactical knife more ergonomically shaped, but we felt many people would want to be able to use this knife with different grips (for example, reverse grip where the blade comes out of the bottom of your closed fist).  However, if you plan on only using a tactical knife in a forward grip motion, then this choil would feel comfortable in your hand.

The plastic sheath is functional. It comes with 2 attachments, a belt loop and a belt clip, so we liked that there were different ways of carrying your tactical knife to suit. But it lacks retention – a key aspect we would look for, especially when being in the great outdoors. This is a real shame, as this is a robust blade, designed for use on tough surfaces such as wood, and is corrosive-free, and yet the sheath cannot retain the knife correctly, which is imperative when in the great outdoors.

Cold Steel 17T Kobun Tanto Fixed

This is our most keenly priced item on our best tactical knife list, and is 9.875 inches in length (4.5 inch blade) with a Japanese stainless steel blade and Kraton handle. Kobun stands for ‘soldier’, so this knife has been created with self-defence in mind. As such, it is our lightest knife on our best tactical knife list, making it ideal for everyday carry.

Despite having a thinner blade when compared to other tactical knives, it has a reinforced point which makes is resistant to breaking and bending, as well as a spine that runs nearly to the tip of the blade, which makes it very robust. We found the blade edge very sharp out of the box and resisted dulling. Sharpening takes a little longer than some other pocket tactical knives, but this is offset with the fact that you get a much sharper, robust knife. We did notice that the blade does show signs of wear and tear easily. However, this does not seem to affect its performance. The blade style is ‘tanto’, which means it is mainly for self-defence and fighting. However, we found this knife useful for lots of everyday tasks, such as wood work, carving meat and other foods, sharpening, chopping…….in fact, most tasks. The knife point also stays needle sharp throughout – very handy for when you need to dig at something.

For such a robust and tough knife, it is thin and has a slender profile, which means we hardly felt it at all when carrying it around. The only drawback we could think of is that, despite being thinner than most other tactical knives on our best tactical knife list, it is still thicker than the average pocket knife, and it definitely will not fit into most pockets. The sheath that comes with it is also very slender, and does not add any bulk to your profile. We found retention of the knife very good, and it holds the knife snugly, even when running. A fantastic tactical knife for everyday carry, so long as you don’t mind carry a tactical knife in a sheath, rather than in your pocket.

Cold Steel SRK San Mai III Black Kraton Handle

This is our most expensive item on our best tactical knife list, and has an overall length of 10 and ¾ inches (blade length 6 inches) and is made from San Mai III stainless steel, which is renowned for toughness, sharpness and strength, whilst also being easy to re-sharpen. It comes with a durable nylon sheath for carrying.

This is the toughest and sharpest tactical knife on our list. We found that it can easily batton through the toughest wood, butcher and field dress dear and other game, and behead fish. The blade also has a black finish to resist rusting, making it ideal for hunting trips or whenever you need to be in the great outdoors. This is the ultimate big game hunting knife as well as survival knife, and it can handle the most arduous tasks without dulling. The Kraton handle is outstanding and will never let you down, giving you incredible grip.

A minor disadvantage is that this knife is simply too big to handle tasks such as skinning, slicing vegetables, peeling vegetables or filleting fish. If you are looking for more of a ‘camping’ tactical knife, then this is not the best tactical knife for your needs.

SOG Specialty Knives & Tools E37SN-CP Seal Pup Elite Knife with Straight Edge Fixed 4.85-Inch Steel Blade and GRN Handle, Black TiNi Finish

This is a mid-priced item on our best tactical knife list, and is 9.5inches with a blade length of 4.85 inches. The manufacturers boast that their SOG knives have been tested and evaluated by the SEALS (tested on criteria such as tip breaking stress, blade breaking limit, prying, penetration, hammering, chopping, two week salt water immersion, sharpness, edge retention, handle twist off force, gasoline and acetylene torch resistance, ability to cut 6 different types of line and rope, and the ability to handle intense hand-on competition out in the field) and is therefore a very tough tactical knife. It features a blade made from steel and has a clip point shape with a black TiNi finish. The blade has gone through a cryogenic heat treatment process (temperature is slowly decreased to under -300 degree Fahrenheit and then gently increased to room temperature). This creates a blade that holds its sharpness for longer with decreased possibility of edge-chipping or micro-fracturing. The handle is made from glass-reinforced nylon, which makes this tactical knife feel very comfortable in your hand, and deep finger grooves for added grip. It also features an added spine rasp for filing, notching and thumb placement.

We loved how tough this blade was. It made light work of shaving wood and cutting through other materials, while the edge remained needle sharp. The feel of the handle is fantastic, feeling extremely comfortable whilst offering us all the grip we needed. The only issue we had was the nylon sheath it came with. The sheath has a Kydex insert inside (the Kydex gives fantastic retention). However, the sheath design is bad. The Kydex insert is only held in the nylon sheath with a piece of double sided scotch tape on the bottom and top of the insert, which means that when you remove the knife from the sheath, the insert pulls out with it. This is major issue as accidents can happen. We did find, however, by inserting and removing the knife many times into the sheath, the Kydex insert loosens its grip just enough to stay inside the nylon sheath when removing the knife.

So what is the best tactical knife on the market today?

We simply could not decide on one knife that beats all for the title of the best tactical knife! It really does all depend on what tasks you expect to accomplish with your chosen tactical knife.

For everyday carry and self-defence, you cannot beat the Cold Steel 17T Kobun Tanto. As the lightest and slimmest tactical knife on our best tactical knife list, this can be worn all day with you barely noticing that you are carrying it. However, it is too large to fit into a pocket, but keep in mind that most ‘pocket’ tactical knives are inferior in both durability and sharpness when compared to the fantastic Kobun Tanto.

If you expect to be hunting big game a lot, or need a real ‘survival tool’, the Cold Steel SRK San Mai III is the best tactical knife. It simply won’t let you down, even if you have several animals to butcher or dress. It’s our most expensive item on our best tactical knife list, but it will last you a lifetime. The Morakniv Bushcraft Carbon Black Tactical Knife should be your first choice if you spend a lot of time camping – just be aware of the sheath that comes with it as it simply does not retain the knife well (you may want to buy a separate sheath if you plan on keeping it on your person).  If you expect to be on the move all the time, and need a tactical knife to remain put, KA-BAR #1213 Black Straight Edge Knife comes with the best sheath. Just remember that this knife is uncomfortable when carving wood, so don’t buy if you expect to work with wood a lot.

And if you simply want the best tactical knife overall, which can handle everything but the most extreme of tasks, then SOG Specialty Knives & Tools E37SN-CP Seal Pup Elite Knife is your best bet.

Wat Do You Think – What Is The Best Tactical Knife?

We realise there are a lot of great tactical knives that we did not discuss, which some people will believe is in fact the best tactical knife. If you have an opinion, please share your thoughts on what the best tactical knife is in the comments section below.

The Best Pocket Knife – We Discuss 5 Great Options

 5 Pocket Knife Options

There are many reasons why you may want to carry a pocket knife with you. We human beings have quite flexible hands, especially with our opposable thumbs, which means we can grab, tear push and pull many things. However, one thing we can’t do without using tools is cut. Carrying a pocket knife helps you open boxes and packages easily, as well as help in first aid, such as cutting bandages or fashioning tourniquets. And if you like fishing or the spend time in the great outdoors, a pocket knife becomes indispensable, from roasting hot dogs to shaving down kindling, from removing hooks to cutting lines…the list of uses is endless! So what is the best pocket knife on the market today?

We take a look at the five most popular pocket knives on Amazon and give you the lowdown!

Buck Knives 110BRS Folding Hunter Knife

This is one of our most expensive items on our best pocket knife list, but you do get what you pay for. Last year (2014), Buck celebrated their 50th Anniversary of these knives, and many people who bought them 50 years ago have passed these knives onto their sons, who will testify that these knives are still in fantastic shape. In fact, they’ve even become family heirlooms to be handed down from generation to generation, so get one of these and you’ll be sure to use it for most of your lifetime, and it will still be in good enough condition to hand it down to a son or even grandson. Buck back this up with a ‘4-Ever’ lifetime warranty too.

This knife is 3 ¾ inches steel clip blade with a closed length of 4 7/8 inches, and weighs 7.2 ounces, so it’s definitely not as small as many other knives, but what it lacks in the ‘handy size’ department, it more than makes up for in sheer power, and of course these knives have become somewhat of a prestige brand (all of the 110’s knives manufactured from 2014 onwards will come with a ‘1964 50 years’ emblem). This is the perfect knife for those who like to collect knives and have something to pass on to a younger generation.

As these were originally designed in 1964, these knives boast classic looks with a Dymondwood natural wood-grain handle with polished brass bolsters, stainless steel blade and a genuine leather sheath. These knives are truly beautiful and classic – perfect for those who don’t like the look of ‘modern’ knives.  It’s also equipped with a nail-notch lockback design, which allows the knife to opened and closed safely. This is very important as we found the blade to have a razor sharp edge, and some users have made the mistake of placing their fingers across the handle to close the knife, resulting in cut fingers – be warned!

There are a couple of drawbacks. This knife is heavy compared to more modern knives, with a lot of weight being attributed to the natural wood handle. When fully opened, the point of balance is near the middle of the handle, which makes it ideal for controlled cutting, but the knife is not so good for general cutting. Also, the nail-notch lockback systems does mean you need two hands to open the knife. For everyday use, needing both hands can make this knife cumbersome, when there are more modern designs that allow you to fold knives back up with one hand. We would recommend this knife for anyone who is a hunter or fisherman, as this razor sharp and robust knife can skin, gut and clean all sorts of game animals and fish. And of course, this is the best pocket knife for anyone who just wants to have a genuine all American heirloom to pass onto a younger family member!

Victorinox Cadet Swiss Army Knife

This is one our tiniest knives on our best pocket knife list. Made from stainless steel, it measures 3.31 by 0.75 by 0.25 inches, and weighs a miniscule 2 ounces. We were very impressed with how thin it is. We could put it into our back pockets and forget it was there! This is in direct contrast to a lot of other Swiss army knives which tend to have plastic handles, which make them at least 50% thicker. Also, having an all stainless steel design means we did not have to worry about scratching the handle, a real worry sometimes with inferior plastic handles. And the stainless steel plates just gives the knife a much more elegant look compared to those with plastic sides, which can look ‘cheap’.

We were pleased with how sharp the knife was too, although this is nowhere near as good as the above Buck 110, so we would not recommend for tackle box, camping and hunting. As you would expect with all Swiss army knives, this comes complete with a whole host of tools (key ring, bottle opener, large and small screwdriver, wire stripper, can opener, nail cleaner and nail file). We do wish they had added some scissors though.

This is one of the best pocket knife options for every day carry. You would forget you were even carrying it most times, and yet it would be there for you when you need it. What’s more, it even features a panel on one side that allows for engraving – perfect for anyone who wants to buy this as a present for someone. The only drawback we could foresee is that stainless steel is a nightmare to use with wet hands. So if you’re expecting to be in wet environments with this pocket knife, this may not be the best pocket knife choice for you. Otherwise, we can’t fault this pocket knife for every day carry.

Ontario 8848 RAT Folding Knife (Black)

This is one our mid-sized knives on our best pocket knife list, measuring 4.5 inches closed (8.5 inches when open) and weighing 5 ounces. It boasts ergonomic nylon handles and spine jimping, giving this knife great control and grip, with good weight and balance, and the thumb stud allows you to open and close this knife with one hand. The Liner lock locking mechanism is solid and trustworthy, so you have no worries about unwanted opening accidents. One gripe we had is that the pivot is a little stiff when new. You may need to flick the blade out a number of times to get it to start flicking out smoothly. If you’re confident about modification skills, you could also use a round file to cut away some of nylon handle near the thumb stud, which will make the blade flick out a lot faster and smoother. But only do this if you’re confident.

The steel blade is heavy with a robust working tip, making this a knife ideal for slicing. Also, the thick steel liners throughout makes this one of the most heavy duty folding knives on the market today. What’s more, this knife comes with a four position pocket clip to suit many different carry styles, making this an easy pocket knife to carry every day. We could even see ourselves using this knife for self-defence reasons (make sure this is legal in your state).

Our only gripe is that the handle scales could have been more textured, as we found them too smooth and slick. But, considering the cheap price, the best pocket knife in this price range that can also hold its own against pocket knives in much higher price bracket.

Micra Multi-Tool

This is not so much a pocket knife as a multi-function tool, but it makes it onto our best pocket knife list for its sheer number of uses and it’s incredibly compact size, which makes this the perfect tool for every day carry. The Micra Multi-Tool is made from durable stainless steel and measures a tiny 2.5 inches when compact, and weighs only 2 ounces, meaning it can easily be added to a key chain and forgotten about until it is needed. Despite its size, it manages to fit an incredible 10 tools; knife, tweezers, 3 screwdrivers, scissors, nail file, nail cleaner, ruler and bottle opener.

We love the spring-action scissors as the design makes it robust yet comfortable to use. However, we did have issues with the pivot, as it doesn’t pull the blades together hard enough, which means soft materials such as thread or plastic slip through the blades. On paper and cardboard, the scissor worked perfectly. The bottle opener works smoothly and is adequate for what it is expected to do. The screw drivers were our favourite tools, as the brilliant interlocking tab design on these make them rigid when closed, and the small screwdriver is small enough to use on eyeglasses. The knife isn’t our favourite tool as the chisel ground edge makes it ideal for peeling or scraping, but difficult to slice anything accurately. We were surprised at how stiff and narrow the tweezers were, making them a lot better than most of the tweezers we see included with Swiss army knives. The nail cleaner, nail file and ruler all do their jobs adequately.

This is the perfect tool for every day carry, but if you expect to use the knife as your main tool, we recommend you look elsewhere. The scissors are a great addition, but think about what materials you would expect to use it with. If it’s mainly paper and cardboard, you’ll love these scissors. But if it’s soft materials, then these scissors are not up to the mark. So if you want a cutting knife, this is perhaps not the best pocket knife for you. However if you like all the extra little tools, it could be the knife for you!

Benchmade Mini Griptilian Knife

Our most expensive knife on our best pocket knife list and designed to give you a lifetime of use. The stainless steel blade is 2.91 inches with an overall closed length of 3.87 inches (opened length is 6.78 inches), and it weighs only 2.56 ounces. Sold with a useful pocket clip, this knife is compact enough for everyday carry.

The blade itself has a great modified drop-point to it, and is easily deployed using the thumb studs, which has great traction and is situated exactly where you would expect. We really liked how the design of the blade involves ‘designer scratches’! You would think that having a blade that looks already scratched would be a drawback, but the scratches look great, and it also means that any real scratches you cause to the blade are effectively camouflaged. However, the edge of the blade is a real let down. The edge is quite thick which makes cutting through anything coarse or thick, such as cardboard, difficult.

The handle on this pocket knife is one of the best we’ve ever seen when it comes to grip (this knife is, for this reason, often referred to as a ‘Mini Griptillian’). This knife has a finger choli which allows you to have good grip and keeps your fingers safe by preventing them from sliding into the cutting area. Also, on each handle scale, there is a checker board pattern of tiny pyramids which gives you incredible grip. The only caveat we would say is that the uneven base can cause pain to anyone with delicate hands and skin.

We loved the axis lock and felt this was quite a unique aspect for a pocket knife. The omega springs on each side of the lock give the much needed tension required to keep the blade within the handle. When the knife is open, the axis lock prevents the blade from closing on your hand. All this means that this knife should never fail to deploy exactly when you want it to, whilst not accidentally deploying itself.

Overall, this is a robust pocket knife that is much more robust than cheaper pocket knives and will last the test of time. However, do ask yourself what you expect to use this knife on, as the fat blade edge will cause problems if you wish to cut thick, coarse material.

So which out of our list is the best pocket knife?

You should choose the best pocket knife for you keeping in mind what you intend to use a pocket knife for. Although the idea of carrying a pocket knife is for you to be able to use it in unforeseen circumstances, with a little thought, you can imagine the likely scenarios you would expect to find yourself in. What kind of activities do you do regularly? Do you find yourself in wet environments? What types of material do you expect to use your knife on? Asking yourself questions like this will allow you to pick the most useful tool from our best pocket knife list. Let’s quickly recap all the items on our best pocket knife list:

The Buck Knives 110BRS Folding Hunter Knife is our largest and heaviest knife on our best pocket knife list. Add to that the two handed opening, and it’s obviously not the ideal option for every day carry, unless you actually spend most of your time in the great outdoors. However, if you want the sharpest blade ever, that can slice through most things, and is guaranteed to even outlive you, then this is the best option. Add to that the prestige of owning one of these blades, and you can see why these knives are some of the most popular knives on the market.

The Victorinox Cadet Swiss Army Knife is one of the smallest options on our best pocket knife list, making it ideal for everyday carry. Despite this, it still has a very sharp blade, and useful tools. The all stainless steel gives it a very classy and elegant look, and the only drawback we could think of is that it would be difficult to grip when wet.

Ontario 8848 RAT Folding Knife is a mid-size option on our best pocket knife list, and an ideal option for someone who wants something more robust than smaller pocket knives, but also something small enough to be able to carry at all times. The only issue we had with this item is that the handle could have had better grips.

Micra Multi-Tool is ideal for anyone who does not expect to use a knife very often at all, as the other tools included (especially the three screwdrivers) are so versatile. Definitely not for you if you spend a lot of time outdoors, naturally. But an inexpensive option for simple, everyday carry, especially as it is our smallest option on our best pocket knife list.

The Benchmade Mini Griptilian Knife is our most expensive option on our best pocket knife list, and it is built to last. It has the best grip we have ever seen on a pocket knife, so if this has been an issue in the past when you’ve bought knives, then you will be pleased with the performance of this knife. But do ask yourself what materials you expect to be slicing through, as the fat edge on this blade makes cutting through thick, coarse material uncomfortable.

Our best pocket knife choice on the market today:

We couldn’t decide on one knife that we think is the best pocket knife of the knives discussed above, so we picked two! For the sharpest blade we’ve ever seen that will see us through anything that life can throw at us, we have to choose the Buck Knives 110BRS Folding Hunter Knife. Not ideal for everyday carry due to size and weight, but this is the go-to knife that you will be able to rely on in even the harshest of conditions and environments.

For everyday carry, we think the best pocket knife is the Ontario 8848 RAT Folding Knife. We struggled to find knives almost twice the price of this pocket knife that is as well made and robust as this pocket knife, and yet compact enough to carry with you wherever you go.

What Do You Think – What Is The Best Pocket Knife?

Do you have an opinion on what is the best pocket knife? We know there are many many great pocket knives out there and that different folks will have an opinion on what they think the best pocket knife is. If you have some thoughts on the topic, please share them in the comments section below.