Literally.This knife is the most expensive folding knife on our list by a long shot so don’t lose it! Such knives can be sturdier, although they are challenging to sharpen correctly. Every folding knife has some way of staying open once deployed. Far and away the most common is a simple spring lever usually inherent to the body of the knife. When choosing your folding knife there are a lot of different types of handle to understand. Materials range from the mundane to the exotic and synthetic. This tapered shape is sometimes replaced with a slightly curved shape, depending on the manufacturer. The flat grind is a common grind for knife blades offering very good "middle-grade" cutting properties. Flat grind. From there you can make a good decision based on your own needs and not other people’s opinions. What’s really different about them is the blade shape.Tanto blade knives, while increasingly popular, are still a bit of a statement. Required fields are marked *. A handy online tool for the knifemaker to determine the angle to use when grinding single or double bevel blades. Refers to the steepness of the fade from full-thickness to blade edge. These blades are great for skinning and gutting work! Wright Camp MUK 3.6 inch A2 Flat Grind Fixed Blade Knife, Red Linen Micarta, Leather Sheath at … The knife will periodically need to be resharpened, and if it is particularly abused, it may need to be reground. Expand To See MoreSee LessThat’s when I realized that it may be impossible to find a knife with more utility and value in such a small, lightweight package.Don’t get me wrong – this is no tactical Rambo knife.But if you’re an average Joe like the rest of us then you might enjoy the tweezers (I use them weekly), keyring attachment, or scissors (surprisingly strong).I’ve used the scissors to cut cable ties and trim fingernails for years! Don’t bring this one to a knife fight, though – it’s better suited to everyday tasks. Open the knife and check that the locking device is securely and positively in position. Check that you can easily operate the lock to disengage it. Remember that a lot of factors affect edge sharpness and most of them have nothing to do with steel composition at all. Overall the length of a folding knife blade needs to be 3 things: In some areas a folding knife, especially when carried in a pocket, becomes subject to certain laws. Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. A simple folding knife where all the work is done by your thumb or fingers remains the most practical and simple choice. Without a doubt the best thing you can do before you buy a knife is think about how you want to use it. This will help you determine which characteristics you need. Editor’s Choice Backpacking Tent: Mountainsmith Morrison, Editor’s Choice Backpacking Sleeping Bag: Outdoor Vitals, Editor’s Choice Sleeping Pad: Therm-a-Rest ProLite, Editor’s Choice Mens Hiking Shoe: Merrell Moab, Editor’s Choice Womens Hiking Shoe: Merrell Moab Ventilator, Editor’s Choice Backpack: Gregory Mountain Baltoro, Editor’s Choice Hiking Pants: Outdoor Research Cirque, Editor’s Choice Backpacking Stove: MSR WhisperLite, Editor’s Choice Rain Jacket: Marmot Precip, © Copyright 2020, | Outside Pursuits | All Rights Reserved. Every knifemaker and knife enthusiast has their own opinions about what steels are the “right” ones. Many kitchen knives are flat ground, and the knives can be quite useful and sturdy for some applications. A classic Opinel folding knife has a "flat grind" blade, meaning that the faces of the blade are flat, without convexity or concavity, tapering towards the cutting edge: but the actual cutting edge is again formed of another, less acute bevel ground on … Buy LTW LTWCMKFA2LM19 for $147.95 with free shipping - L.T. (4.8/5) 1075 HC. Attempting a specific job with the wrong grind on your blade will make that job much more difficult. I love the sleek elegant curves they put on this otherwise simple knife. CRKT Pilar Copper EDC Folding Pocket Knife at a Glance:Material: 8Cr13MoV SteelSize: 4” BladeWeight: 4.2 ozOther: Limited Lifetime Warranty. While it may not be a 5/5 for all-around practicality I do love the fine-edge tanto style and Cold Steel did a geat job executing that here. The type of grind on your knife has a considerable influence on how successful it will perform a certain task. Learn how your comment data is processed. CRKT places a knife on our list by sticking with the basics. Burls are swirly with great colors and synthetic resin can be used to add crazy style to these otherwise normal wooden handle materials. When a flat ground blade is made, the knife is ground all the way from the spine, the blunt edge which usually contains the bulk of the metal in a blade, to the edge, designed for cutting. Together the SR1 and Recon 1 share a lot of similarities from Cold Steel. Pocket clip, blade lockout inherent in the frame, and an easy to use finger flipper.Somehow they even managed to keep the price down to an entry-level fee.Best for making a modern statement while keeping things affordable and practical. G10 is tough as nails though handles made from pure G10 tend to be a bit pricey despite the fact that the material itself isn’t particularly scarce. That said, there’s likely some real-world improvement to blade quality though you’ll pay for it. There is no advantage to flat ground knives or convex ground knives unless one is using the knife as a froe for riving … Be sure that the lock maintains positive control on the blade when in the closed position as having your knife pop open in your pocket could be catastrophic. For splitting little pieces of wood in a woodsman or survival situation, you probably want something decently long and beefy. T o sharpen the Scandi grind by hand, place the bevel flat to the sharpening stone and work on the whole edge. Is there a difference in the shape of the blade? Inertia is your friend: Another benefit of a Scandi grind is that you can achieve a thin edge and, unlike with a full flat grind, you maintain the blade weight of a saber grind.Having that bit of extra spine weight increases your ability to drive the edge forward. At the end of the day, this is a big knife. Most likely it was a conversation between two flintknappers sitting around a cave—and the battle of which grind is the best rages on to this day. In all reality, even basic stainless steel will hold an edge just fine and can easily be re-sharpened almost endlessly. I personally love the rugged look and feel and I’m sure it will appeal to anyone who likes the military or tactical aesthetic.At the end of the day, this is a big knife. For that reason, a knife with a true flat grind is relatively rare. Flat Grind. Practicality is an easy one – if you fold your knife up will it still fit in your pocket or on your belt? Sure, you can fold a sword in half but that won’t make it a good pocket knife. It’s great because aluminum is both lightweight and rust-proof. An assisted opening knife’s purpose is to be more rapidly deployable. Some see this as a for-fun feature while others see it as a self-defense or assault feature. Spey point blades feature a tip that is flat and un-sharpened with a very minimal blade profile. Along its length, these blades tend to be flat on the belly and spine. Cold Steel Recon 1 Tanto at a Glance:Material: S35VN SteelSize: 4” BladeWeight: 5.2 ozOther: 5 3/8″ Handle. I’ve used the scissors to cut cable ties and trim fingernails for years! Don’t bring this one to a knife fight, though – it’s better suited to everyday tasks. I just replaced them with a new one, though, because I’ve yet to find something more affordable or practical. A short, steep flat grind creates a blade with great strength and durability while a shallow flat grind tapering all the way to the spine may create a sharp, yet fragile thin blade. However, bits of the edge can break off in the sharpening process, especially if the knife is old. The Coyote is as apt at skinning game as it is starting fires and will make a great game knife. Here's a few things I've learned over the years that have really helped me get better bevels on my blades. These jigs hold the knife blade steady while you use a predetermined stone on a slide to keep the edge even and repeatable. The LT Wright Coyote will be your best buddy, best companion, and go to knife while hunting, on a hike or just doing every day tasks. Flipping the spectrum on its head is the Gerber Quadrant. Remember that knives are meant for fine cutting work – they’re not hammers, axes, or chisels. Full Flat. Gerber Quadrant at a Glance:Material: 7Cr17MoV Stainless SteelSize: 7” BladeWeight: 4.6 ozOther: Limited Lifetime Warranty. Tanto blade refers to a Japanese weapon that gave this knife its shape. Steel grades will often be cited by manufacturers and other enthusiasts. Remember that if you plan to carry a folding knife every day, smaller is a lot more comfortable. Determining a blade’s appropriateness depends on what you want to use it for. Many kitchen knives are flat ground, and the knives … There are also some variants which mix different types of grinds, such as a knife which is only flat ground on one side. The full flat grind … When it comes to everyday carry, nothing beats lightweight and practical. It’s a very handy simple design feature that streamlines the opening process for your folding knife though it is, admittedly, unnecessary. The grind of a blade is wh… Hardening causes the crystal structure of the steel to close up in specific ways that result in an increase in hardness and brittleness. I’ve owned probably half a dozen of these in my life. A: In terms of raw performance when subjecting a knife to “performance tests”, yes, carbon steel knives are capable of excelling further than most stainless knives. The Bubble Jig Grinding System is designed to take the guesswork out of flat-grinding a blade. Expand To See MoreSee LessThe blade itself lacks a defined tip though the upswept belly does give it just a bit of dexterity around the nose.They’ve made the whole thing revolve around a smooth handle and frame design specifically meant to avoid snagging on pockets.Some of you will be very happy to note that the pocket clip is reversible.Unfortunately, the machining marks where the reversible screws are located somewhat detracts from the sleek form of this knife.High marks for ergonomics and practicality yet a design that stands out from the crowd. Ultralight Backpacking Mummy Down Sleeping Bag for Lightweight Hiking & Camping, Therm-a-Rest Prolite Ultralight Self-Inflating Backpacking Pad, Standard Valve, Large - 25 x 77 Inches, Merrell Moab Ventilator Waterproof Hiking Shoes - SS15-7 - Brown, Merrell Women's Moab 2 Vent Falcon Hiking Shoe 6 M US, Gregory Mountain Products Baltoro 65 Liter Men's Backpack, Navy Blue, Small, Outdoor Research Men's Cirque Pants, Pewter, Large, MSR WhisperLite Portable Camping and Backpacking Stove, Marmot Men's PreCip Lightweight Waterproof Rain Jacket, Green Lichen, Small. A: Remember, sharpness is a combination of factors. This type of grind… Please note that some blade opening types such as assisted, switchblade, partial assist, etc. When we peel back the curtain and look at the broad world of folding knives, however, it quickly becomes overwhelming. Scandi: The Scandinavian Grind is a wide flat bevel that runs to the edge of the blade, according to Ragweed Forge, and there is little or no secondary bevel. They’re both based on the same improved stainless steel. Both rely on texture G10 handle slabs for grip and looks. Assisted opening knives are fun! They range from spring loaded to flick levers operated by a thumb or index finger with the flick of the wrist. These jig systems overcome the problem of sharpening at the wrong angle. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. In addition to my outdoor hobbies, I’m a huge fan of punk rock. We won’t go over these, but I will say that you must be sure that your blade is legal to carry, particularly if you’re taking it anywhere public. Depending on the thickness of the blade, this usually requires at least some secondary bevel. Plus I find that the assist mechanisms, locks, and safety features become an unnecessary complication of what is otherwise a simple and reliable tool. Hollow ground blades tend to be so sharp that they can often be brittle. Last one . Go with stainless steel. Need a knife with the best possible edge retention and metallurgical properties tuned just right? Refers to the area of the knife where the full thickness of the spine transitions into the thinnest part of the blade. These L.T. Personally, I don’t see a need for assisted opening knives for utility purposes so I recommend others steer clear of them, particularly given the potential legal implications they bring with them. Before buying, think about what you want to use the knife for. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and Carbon steel knives have the potential to be heat treated in specific ways that can make them extremely hard, extremely durable, and/or extremely flexible. They’re poorly suited to anything other than filleting fish. Free shipping. These can be most commonly seen on straight razors where the blade is subject to delicate work that requires extreme sharpness. This grind makes for some wickedly sharp chef’s knives and is often seen used for Japanese culinary knives. Its full-flat grind excels at low-friction slicing; however, the trade-off is that the more steel you remove from a blade, the weaker it becomes. This air-hardening steel is known for great wear and abrasion resistance and is often found in knives though you’ll have to be somewhat more cautious of corrosion than you would with stainless steel. Kyrinite is somewhat famous for being prone to cracking under heavy use, though, so don’t try pounding nails in with it! Also, they make it easy to repeat your sharpening process every time and they’re a great idea for beginners or experts. Let’s take a look at what some of the top folding knives are out there and how you can choose wisely. Getting it wet and not cleaning it often? I personally love the rugged look and feel and I’m sure it will appeal to anyone who likes the military or tactical aesthetic. Clip point blades fall sharply into a thin point near the tip. They’re great for fine work and strike a balance between a trailing point blade and a drop point blade. I enjoy sharing my experiences of backcountry education teaching and guiding through writing. Each type of blade grind has pros and cons. Since flat ground blades have a thin grind to begin with, they tend to fail more quickly than some other blades. $195.46. This type of blade is flat-ground on both sides. Drop point knife shapes are maybe the most common shape out there. On the back, the knife’s spine falls slightly, usually near the tip, and the blade sweeps gently up to meet it. Best for simple daily tasks from home to work and back again. Blades with a flat grind are used for a wide variety of knives, mainly kitchen knives, hunting knives and outdoor knives. Unlike the other knives we’ve looked at so far, Harnds has done away with stainless in favor of D2. The frame is also made from steel and features the same coating as the blade which makes for a great seamless look. Overall it’s a simple blade with a proven drop point shape on modest length. The flat grind is a common grind for knife blades offering very good middle-grade cutting properties. Practically all normal kitchen knives have this type of grind. A flat ground blade is a knife blade which is evenly sharpened from the spine to the edge. Don’t forget to revisit the “how to choose” section before you set off and buy your next great folding knife! Sometimes, a knife may be flat ground on one side and beveled on another, in an attempt to take advantage of both possible worlds. Basically, blade grind refers to how the cross-section of the blade is shaped to produce the cutting edge. But if you’re an average Joe like the rest of us then you might enjoy the tweezers (I use them weekly), keyring attachment, or scissors (surprisingly strong). Steel and materials manufacturers have some good information available as well, like this brief look at steel grade nomenclature. This grind type is common on things like splitting mauls which need extreme durability because they’re often smashed into the dirt. Expand To See MoreSee LessThis totally flat (from handle to blade) knife profile reminds me of an old-time wood working tool like a froe or a shingle splitter for cedar shakes.Without any defined point, this blade makes a good choice for work where you don’t want to accidentally stab something (or someone) such as rescue or salvage operations.All the standard features are here as well. Be aware of the laws in your area governing knife type and use before buying.By far the most common and reasonable type of opening mechanism is… none at all! For a brief intro to steel grades give the Wiki a read. One of the most important factors in choosing a knife that few people talk about is “intended purpose”. I use this phrase to mean, “how do you want to use your knife?”. One of the first and biggest hurdles you’ll encounter is understanding types of steel. There’s a lot to know and a lot of misnomers to step around. The motion of holding the knife is very much so the same as what I normally do when I grind. The longest blade we’ve reviewed so far is also, perhaps, the most ambitious. In reality, there are thousands of steel alloys out there and each one is specifically good at a narrow range of things and intended to be worked and heat-treated in specific ways. If, however, you need something for fine slicing and cutting like skinning then the choice would be different. A hollow ground drop point or even trailing point knife would make sense here. Mr Volcano - Knife Blade Steel - (12 inch x 2 Inch x 3/16 inch) 1095 High Carbon - Annealed - Flat Stock Blanks for Knife Making, Forging, BladeSmithing, Blacksmithing 4.8 out of 5 stars 46 $19.95 $ 19 . All the standard features are here as well. The type of heat treatment needed for any specific steel is not magic or mystery – these processes are understood and laid out in scientific documentation from the alloy manufacturers themselves. Cold Steel is inarguably a well-loved brand.Loyalists enjoy the often tactical aesthetic and the company focuses on producing blades with the most-hyped materials and methods. A knife made of the correct carbon steel and heat treated the correct way for the intended use of the knife will outperform a stainless knife by most metrics. This totally flat (from handle to blade) knife profile reminds me of an old-time wood working tool like a froe or a shingle splitter for cedar shakes. The Scandinavian grind uses a flat primary bevel of course, but there's a variation with a flat grind over the width of the blade. Harnds Vanguard CK7207 Folding Knife at a Glance:Material: D2 SteelSize: 3.66″ BladeWeight: 4.76 ozOther: 3 Blade Options. But [The … Using the old-school clip point design, this knife has good cutting and puncturing ability. That said, the small skeleton frame design isn’t made for heavy work. Buck Knives 102 Woodsman Phenolic Full Flat Grind Fixed Blade Knife W/Sheath . Blades with a flat grind are used for a wide variety of knives, mainly kitchen knives, hunting knives and outdoor knives. Unfortunately, the machining marks where the reversible screws are located somewhat detracts from the sleek form of this knife. This is why the majority of kitchen knives are flat ground - so they can pass through food easily without much resistance. Cold Steel gets a second spot on our list today because they’re one of the only manufacturers producing an all-time favorite style of mine – the Tanto. Hollow ground edges tend to have the sharpest overall function. I got a Swiss Army Knife as a kid and loved it. Free shipping . Southern Grind, Zac Brown’s Georgia-based knife company, offers unrivaled knife lines and unique metal works made by American hands using extremely high quality materials and an unparalleled attention to detail. Gerber Paraframe Mini Knife at a Glance:Material: Stainless SteelWeight: 1.6 ozSize: 2” BladeOther: Limited Warranty. The relatively short blade has a rounded belly that makes for easy and effective cutting work from a variety of comfortable angles. Literally.This knife is the most expensive folding knife on our list by a long shot so don’t lose it!It’s a gorgeous aggressive drop point blade with a full-size 5 – ⅜” handle featuring textured G10 for a great grip. The modern tactical and bushcraftmovements have brought heated debates on which grind is the best. Metal handles are no-nonsense options. There is so little martial left at the edge of the blade that chipping can be a common issue if the steel being used is overly hard or too thin. This one makes our list as a top pick for all-purpose, great value in a practical package. Viewed in cross-section it looks like a triangle. The older a knife is, the thinner it gets. If you want to use your knife for digging, prying, chopping, hacking, opening cans, and other hard abusive tasks that will affect your knife choice. Choosing the right handle type is a combination of personal style and function. As a true knife enthusiast, Zac has always been interested in blade design and production. The “grind” of a blade refers to the way in which it is finished for sharpening and eventual sale. It's easy to maintain, but it doesn't produce the most durable edge. You’ll want something with a sharp edge angle for a durable blade and you’ll probably want something like a tanto point for durability. That’s when I realized that it may be impossible to find a knife with more utility and value in such a small, lightweight package. Deployment is done via a thumb stud or finger tab both of which are partially assisted using a Kershaw designed mechanism. Their shape lends a strong blade tip that excels at puncturing and prying (though I don’t recommend it). It also just has that sexy tactical feel. For practical purposes, there are probably only one or two blade shapes that really make the most sense for utilitarian value in a folding knife. Some of you will be very happy to note that the pocket clip is reversible. Without any defined point, this blade makes a good choice for work where you don’t want to accidentally stab something (or someone) such as rescue or salvage operations. Learn to check for burrs with your thumbnail and remove them with good sharpening techniques. (Most blades billed as having a "flat grind" actually have a secondary bevel.) Because a flat ground blade is not beveled or shaped, it is very easy to sharpen. I do enjoy, and recommend, a finger tab style opening mechanism. Knives for some other applications may be flat ground as well, and this is usually clearly stated. At the end of the day, steel grades and chemical composition get bandied about like a marketing tool. Brittle metal may not be up to strenuous cutting tasks, and it will certainly not hold up to vigorous sharpening. Victorinox Swiss Army Classic at a Glance:Material: Stainless SteelSize: 25” BladeWeight: .74 ozOther: 7 Functions. One material that really pops is stabilized wood and wood burl. Cold Steel SR1 Knife at a Glance:Material: CPM-S35VN SteelSize: 4 1/2″ BladeWeight: 7.3 ozOther: Used in Military. Pocket clip, blade lockout inherent in the frame, and an easy to use finger flipper. Flat grind is a straight, even taper from full-thickness to the final blade edge. It’s not going to disappear in your pocket.Best for improved stainless blade steel on a full-size rugged frame with positive grip texture. Some folding knives, particularly those with opening assists, will have a lock to ensure the knife stays closed as well. Wikibuy Review: A Free Tool That Saves You Time and Money, 15 Creative Ways to Save Money That Actually Work. Kershaw has been around for ages making pocket knives that run the spectrum from ultra-tactical to reasonably practical. In everyday use, however, a stainless steel knife is likely to perform any task just as well as a carbon steel knife. Expand To See MoreSee LessDeployment is done via a thumb stud or finger tab both of which are partially assisted using a Kershaw designed mechanism.This one makes our list as a top pick for all-purpose, great value in a practical package. The flat grind is the … Flat grinds are great for whittling and general use. A folding knife has to be able to fold and open easily (and safely) to be of any use at all. That’s why we’re going to take a look at how this is done and what you need to pay attention to. You might recognize them as a fillet knife and you’ll be unlikely to see them in a folding knife unless it’s specifically for fishing. Initially, it doesn’t matter what kind of motion you apply, so long as the bevel stays flat. Expand To See MoreSee LessUsing the old-school clip point design, this knife has good cutting and puncturing ability. That said, the small skeleton frame design isn’t made for heavy work.This knife is great for daily chores like slicing cable ties, cutting ropes, or dividing up the summer sausage.There’s a strong argument to be made that anyone would be hard-pressed to find a more functional folding knife in the price range.Best for simple daily tasks from home to work and back again. Not just any tanto shape, though, this is a no-nonsense practical folder. Pro Tip: If you want to cut to the chase, just get an affordable stainless steel folding knife. exciting challenge of being a wiseGEEK researcher and writer. FULL-FLAT GRIND A blade ground with flat bevels that extend from the spine all the way to the cutting edge. FLAT SABER GRIND A blade ground with flat bevels that extend from the centerline of the blade to the cutting edge. I use this knife for a lot of bushcraft and hunting tasks that sits on my revolver belt with a 119. (or business ventures) When exploring the backcountry, I usually carry less than 10 pounds of gear. What’s most important to keep in mind is that each shape has pros and cons – the right one for you will depend on how you want to use your knife. Ready for a head spinner? Your email address will not be published. In order to be considered a true flat ground blade, the knife must be entirely lacking in bevels. Like a lot of things in the hobbyist knife world over the last few years, blade bevels and grinds have attracted a lot of attention and opinion. Tantos are extremely durable because their tip is short and diamond-shaped in cross-section which makes them quite durable. Our reviews of the top rated folding knives with our comparison table and buyers guide will help you choose the right one for you. Convex grind is the opposite of a hollow grind. The blade profile, when viewed in cross-section, falls over in a slow arc somewhat like the shape of a bullet. Typically, a flat ground blade is V-shaped in cross section, reflecting a grind which gets thinner towards the edge so that it will be a more effective cutting implement. 4.3 in. At 3.6” overall this blade takes the top spot on our list for length so far, beating the Quadrant by a huge margin. Best for an affordable tool-steel folding knife that won’t break the bank. The blade itself lacks a defined tip though the upswept belly does give it just a bit of dexterity around the nose. Expand To See MoreSee LessThis air-hardening steel is known for great wear and abrasion resistance and is often found in knives though you’ll have to be somewhat more cautious of corrosion than you would with stainless steel.At 3.6” overall this blade takes the top spot on our list for length so far, beating the Quadrant by a huge margin. Best for an affordable tool-steel folding knife that won’t break the bank.