Sunday, March 11, 2007

My Preferences in a Pocket Folder

Before I begin reviewing knives and other pointed objects, I suppose I should explain my own expectations of a knife. I am not a cop, a fireman or a soldier. I generally avoid dark alleys in bad parts of town at night. I am not a part-time SWAT member nor do I hunt, kill and skin animals with any great frequency. I live in an urban environment so I seldom have to build my own shelter at night. I'm an IT professional and there are lots of things I still use a blade for in my day-to-day life.

I have carried fixed and folding knive my entire adult life. For years I carried the little Victorinox classic but I went through several a year as I beat them up pretty regularly. I had an old Gerber Bolt-Action folding drop point I carried but then I discovered the pocket clip, the device that allows you to carry a larger folder with ease and convenience.

A pocket-clip folder should meet the following requirements:

2.5" - 2.9" length
Drop point style blade
Unserrated edge
Easy to open with wet or slippery hands

Wet gripability
No serrated or rough edges to abrade or snag on clothing
Sized appropriately to the blade

Pocket Clip:
Placed for tip-up carry
Broad base to support knife without bunching pocket fabric
Rounded tip with adequate tension

Overall Design:
Frame or Liner lock design
Tip-up carry position makes for fast opening
Handle designed to accommodate a fast draw
No sharply serrated edges or protrusions to snag or wear clothing
Blade has sufficient mass to "flip" open with a snap of the wrist
Clip is designed to enhance grip

I want a solid knife that won't wear out under reasonable use and is tough enough to handle the occasional abuse without failing. It should have a fine (non-serrated) blade that is sturdy enough to pry with if I have to. It does not require:
  • A recurved blade
  • Protruding guards or hilts
  • Extreme texturing of handles or sharply serrated edges

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