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Help with easy open folder for a gift

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by floridaclipper, Jan 11, 2015.

  1. floridaclipper


    Dec 17, 2013
    I'm looking for suggestions for a folder for an 81 year old male with arthritis. He has great difficulty opening most of the folders I've showed him. He seems to like the push out the front type knives and stilettos but that's not a category I'm familiar with. I was hoping to show him a gentleman folder or traditional but all ideas (no automatic) are appreciated for an edc knife he will be able to use. Price under $200 preferred.
  2. Stainz


    Jun 24, 2007
    I would suggest my Benchmade 480-1 Shoki, a proper 'Gent's knife' in size and certainly in looks and construction - except for it's no longer available. It opens so easily that it is sold with a pocket carry (Remove the clip!) sheath. Still, carbon fiber scales, m390 steel, fancy hardware and backspacer make it a handsome pocket utility knife. I also have the BM Megumi 482, although it is a bit more difficult to open unless you use both hands. It has cocobolo wood and carbon fiber scales and an S30V blade. It won't likely open in your pocket, so it doesn't come with a sheath. Both are handsome knives with a push button liner lock.

    In a larger knife, consider the Spyderco Native5 G10 C41G5. It's lockback blade of S35VN steel has a large thumbhole for easy deployment. It is a handsome and current knife, although often out of stock due to it's popularity. All of these knives thus far have had blades of 3" or less. My last suggestion is the largest - and I must go on memory re it's assist feature, as I removed it when I got home with it! It is the Zero Tolerance 0770CF, or the 0770 with carbon fiber scales and an excellent ElMax ~3.25" assisted opening blade. You start the blade moving by your second hand or pushing the flipper, the compressed spring assists the opening from there.

    I am 66 and have CTS and arthritis so I am somewhat 'sensitive' to the OP's friend's problems. All of my suggestions are/were available for $200 or less from the usual forum supporting vendors - and some from Amazon, even. I'd check local sources first. The BM 480-1 will take some searching, however.

    Last edited: Jan 11, 2015
  3. floridaclipper


    Dec 17, 2013
    Thank you! I'm headed to a very large knife store today and tomorrow to check these out. It's hard to sort through so many without an idea of what to ask for. The BM 480 sounds perfect if I can find it and he can try it first. I've let him try several of my knives and he wasn't able to use them so I'd prefer to purchase something he can try before we buy. One hand opening would be great but 2 hand is fine as well so long as he is able to use it.
  4. Sonnydaze

    Sonnydaze Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 6, 2009
    I would look at the Spyderco Sage series...1,2, or 3. My personal favorites. The Spyderco Chaparral is also excellent in a slightly smaller design. The Chaparral (backlock) or the Sage 1(frame-lock) would be an inexpensive folder, and likely an easy knife to operate.
    The patented SpydieHole makes these folders very easy to open, so pay attention to the closing operation also. If he prefers a more slim design, look at the Spyderco Caly 3 in VG-10 steel. These are all 3" long blades and generally legal in most jurisdictions.
    These prices generally run from $100 to about $180. Try very hard NOT to pay MSRP prices. These knives are all severely discounted through knife-stores which support our Bladeforum website. I have included a listing of our forum's supporting stores. I have also sent you a PM with several links to a few of these web-stores. It's fine to support your local dealer, as long as he doesn't demand an arm and a leg in addition. You can compare prices with some of our dealers, as listed below. Thank you for helping an older gentleman.
    Note that "closing" designs may also be an impediment to easy use, depending on thumb strength, dexterity, etc.
    I would think that a back-lock or frame-lock would be an easier design to close...than a liner-lock.
    I am also well past a youngster, and I really love the Spyderco Sage and Caly series of folders. Great knives.
    Our supporting dealers...
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2015
  5. EChoil

    EChoil Banned BANNED

    May 22, 2014
    This is way under budget....but hope you can at least look at a Kershaw Leek before you buy.

    I think it might be perfect for him in ease and smoothness.
  6. bro5.0


    Feb 21, 2012
    If he can manipulate a liner lock maybe consider a Spyderco Vallotton? They are classy, built like a tank and easy to open with the big spyder hole.
  7. jstrange


    Mar 31, 2012
    Rat 1 or 2 (depending on how big he likes) are easy opening liner-locks. Nice knives for the price, so it shouldn't be too expensive to gift. I wouldn't necessarily call them gentleman's folders though.
  8. stonproject


    Nov 22, 2013
    three words..


    badass blades, unbeatable price...

    you could nut up for an emerson though if you got the dough. :)
  9. floridaclipper


    Dec 17, 2013
    Thank you for all the suggestions. I'm adding the Sage, Vallotton, Rats and the Kershaws to the list. We're headed back to the store again tomorrow. They have what seems like every current production knife so I'm going to take advantage of testing out everything that may be of interest to us while I have access to them. My leek didn't work for him but perhaps in a different handle material it would. We tried the native 5 and it appears it may work for him. They only had the fluted titanium and the FRN in stock. He preferred the frn for it's slip resistance. I'll search the supporting dealers for a G10 or CF option if that's the one he chooses. I think I sparked his interest so he will get more than one as we have a few holiday's coming up. He's had a really difficult year. I just want to keep him smiling as much as I can.
  10. bdmicarta

    bdmicarta Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 16, 2012
    You didn't give a lot of guidance on size. I think the Sage 1 is a good choice, I was going to recommend the Para 2. It does not require much strength to open or close.
  11. floridaclipper


    Dec 17, 2013
    He's not firm on size but under 4" would probably be best and it should be comfortable in the pocket when sitting as he's confined to a wheelchair. The handle should be long enough for a full 4 finger grip or he could drop it. I did let him try my PM2, stretch, and mini grip to no avail. He loved the look of the Police but he had trouble closing it. The Police and Endura seemed too big for an edc but that's a females perspective not the receivers. Maybe I just need to work with them to loosen them up more.
  12. jeeper9010


    Dec 29, 2014
    Under $200 will get you plenty of nice knives. If you really want a nice good quality affordable knife without having to break the bank, look at spyderco delica. Easy to open and with the rear back lock, should be easy enough to close as well. Light weight but not weak, big enough but not over bearing. A perfect do everything everyday knife.

    The sage is another really good recommendation as well though a bit more expensive. Another quality everyday carry that is very easy to open.
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2015
  13. Rusty65


    Nov 8, 2014
    Why not a little auto knife? I know it's not legal in most places but I can't see a cop bothering a old man to much.
  14. dogstar


    Jan 23, 2011
  15. flarp


    Sep 7, 2011
    Kershaw Speed Bump. It's an assisted-opening flipper, which is about as easy to open as there is. The stud lock can be disengaged by just pushing forward with your thumb, and it doesn't take a great deal of manual dexterity to do so (ie. don't have to wedge your thumb between the handle slabs to disengage a liner or frame lock, and don't have to re-position the knife like with a back lock). When you disengage the lock, the SpeedSafe will keep the blade from closing all the way back down on your hand, so you have plenty of leeway to adjust your grip to close the knife two-handed. It is also pretty full-handled, so it is easy to grip both during use and when opening/closing.

    If you're willing to go up to $200, you can probably find a Spec Bump on the secondary market for well under that.
  16. floridaclipper


    Dec 17, 2013
    We tried all the suggested knives including many of the traditionals in the other thread with the exception of the speed bump. They didn't have it. He's doing the best with the liner locks so we've narrowed it down to the sage 1 CF or the Spyderco Air. What a fun couple of days trying out all of these and many other knives. I also found a Damascus folder with rose wood & nickel bolsters at a knife makers shop that I may pick up in the morning. Thank you all for your help.
  17. RX-79G


    Jun 23, 2006
    I pulled out my SOG Twitch II today. That is a very easy knife to open and close - for a locking knife. I see they now make it with wood scales. I don't know if that fits the bill, but it is attractive and easy to use, if that helps.
  18. floridaclipper


    Dec 17, 2013
    I'll try and check the SOG out as well. :)
  19. dogstar


    Jan 23, 2011
    Hey, cool, thanks for reporting back!
  20. asdf12345


    Jul 4, 2014
    Richard Rogers Sharpie? Long shot but it's a friction folder with a 4.5'' or so handle and has a strong ball detent to hold the blade open and closed, but no lock.

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