What do you look for in a pocket knife?

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by david77, May 7, 2019.

  1. Lateck

    Lateck Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 16, 2017
    For me there are a number of things I look for; style, size, shape, purpose, price, country of origin and my list goes on.
    What I DON'T want in a review is the personal opinion of the reviewer to go on and on. What is to heavy for you is perfect for me. You may live in an area where a OTF is illegal (sorry, should say, not allowed) but where I live it is. As Joe Friday once said, "Just the facts".

    As it has been said, review what you like and give me your fair and honest opinion AND the facts. I can make up my on mind.
    Good luck.
  2. Lee D

    Lee D Basic Member Basic Member

    May 27, 2013
    When it comes to pocket space, I’ve become a bit of a minimalist, so I pay more attention to blade/handle ratio than I did in the past.
  3. Sonnydaze

    Sonnydaze Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 6, 2009
    Drop-point slicer that fits my hand; good steel, around 4 0z.
  4. kaos 13

    kaos 13

    Apr 30, 2019
    I agree with what others have said it's personal preference I like fixed blades a lot better than folder but do own and use a few buck 112 buck 501 Leatherman wave cold steel ti lite 4s zytel and aluminium cold steel counter point 2 but out of all of them with what I do and use them for the ti lite zytel gets used the most it's good at cutting rags helping repair motorcycle wireing cutting zip tie rope rubber hard plasic pipes and food but a lot wont agree and say the leathman would be better suited but i dont like multi tools much it's personal preference like with anything

    reviews you will get people who like the knives and others won't so do what you thinks best and be honest with what the knife is like in your experience
  5. david77


    May 7, 2019
    my issue has been solved!
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 13, 2019
  6. HoustonB77

    HoustonB77 Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 17, 2019
    Personally I always look for more of them. I have several knifes that are awesome. My 2 current favorites are my Spydiechef and a PM2. Knives for me are a revolving door though I'm always buying, selling, and trading. Sometimes I think the hunt is more fun than actually having the knife.
  7. evilgreg

    evilgreg Why so serious? Gold Member

    Dec 25, 2012
    My priority list goes something like this:
    1. When looking at it, I want it (this trumps everything)
    2. When using it, I love it
    3. Lighter weight is always better
    4. Thinner blade stock is always better
    5. Blade steel doesn't matter, beyond that it's at least somewhat appropriate relative to price
    #1 leads to many silly, pointless or stupid purchases (e.g. heavy folders I only very rarely will ever carry, like the ZT 0456, or pointless knives with no legitimate purpose like that Busse TGLB I just couldn't resist).
    colin.p and Mo2 like this.
  8. DocJD


    Jan 29, 2016
    In a video review , I want to see the knife in action and hear comments on how the knife performs over time for whatever purpose it claims to fulfill . :cool::thumbsup::thumbsup:

    Forget the unboxing , fondling and ogling ...cut , slice , chop , stab etc !

    Helpful to compare a given knife side by side with those others that would fill the same niche at a similar price point .

    A long term actual use review is much better than " wow , look at this great thing I just received and don't really know :poop: about " .
    dirc and katanas like this.
  9. Metal Effort

    Metal Effort

    Aug 3, 2019
    I have two youtube channels. My older one is called Mental Effort (Philosophy) and so when I made a knife channel I thought it was clever to make it a play on words and call it Metal Effort. You don't need to remember the other "Metal" channel:)
    b00n likes this.
  10. onekerf

    onekerf Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 5, 2008
    Lapedog likes this.
  11. Quiet

    Quiet "That guy" Platinum Member

    Oct 11, 2013
    It has to be the right balance of materials, design, maker, and country of origin*. I will also say that price has become less important for me these days. I'll spend more to get what I really want, rather than dragging out the wait in order to score a deal. Sure, there are a few that I've purchased that fall outside this spectrum, but in general, these are the elements that drive my purchases.

    * I prefer American, though other Capitalist countries are ok too.
  12. Lapedog


    Dec 7, 2016
    Thinness, lightness, a straight handle that is comfortable in any grip and ideally a good slicer with a strong tip.

    I realize now that a pocket knife spends 99% of a given carry day in my pocket. I don’t want something that feels like a brick in there.

    I am also done buying knives I am lukewarm on the design on just to try a new steel or a new funky locking mechanism.
    DocT likes this.
  13. GIRLYmann


    Nov 7, 2005
    Luv the smell of new knives in the morning!
    Yeah, anything new is an exciting prospect.
    And i would like to think that every choice
    made is a good one.
    That is until it newness effect wears away
    in about a week and turns to the reality of
    actual performance.
    So in all honesty, there is no single best
    knife that wiil perform magically with
    every Immaginable task thrown at it.
    In short its always going to be a
    compromise in areas where you
    require the use of your knife most,
    and then some other forms of the
    other odd cutting task thrown in.
    Just look for covered warranties
    and after sales service of the product.
    Great builds, quality materials, design
    flair, edge holding abilities, and price,
    price, price...there i said it.
  14. afishhunter

    afishhunter Basic Member Basic Member

    Oct 21, 2014
    I prefer multi-blade traditional knives with a practical (for me) blade combination.
    Carbon steel or Stainless does not matter to me, both work. COA is not all that important to me. The offshore made knives are built to whatever quality standard the brand wants, and generally carry the same warranty as their domestic made knives have. (for example the offshore Buck knives have the same Forever Warranty as those made in Idaho.)
  15. Thorfinn


    Sep 28, 2018
    I’m answering this from the point of view of daily or regular carry and use. As far as collecting.... well if it interests me.... haha.

    Well, I know what I use my knives for at this point in my life, so I start there. I frequently need non blade tools, so I like to have at least a basic multi tool. My regulars are a skeletool or a three layer Swiss Army knife. Additionally, I like having a one hand openable blade if I’m going to be doing something, like working, where I will use the blade frequently through the day.

    If I’m going to be doing something where I anticipate hard use I’ll take a fixed blade. That’s pretty uncommon for me recently.

    I prefer my everyday carry knife or knives to be a balance of quality to cost. The few very nice knives that have come my way get babied. That’s not a bad thing, but I don’t want reluctance-to-use-hard as a feature of a knife I take everywhere. On the flip side I look for decent to good steel quality.

    I run a shop and I have access to easy sharpening any time I need during work. If you don’t have that option, a higher end steel with less frequently needed sharpening might be worth it for you. I’ve been favoring the basic leatherman and victorinox steels, with occasional aus 8/d2/vg 10 folders. I prefer non-serrated blades but my skeletool is partially serrated and it works fine. I prefer flat grinds and sub 3” blades but that’s flexible too. The folders I find in my pocket most is a rat 1 (I want to try a 2), Kershaw skyline, kershaw 3830 (might be called igniter or thermite, it’s not labeled), Spyderco native. The native is my favorite of the group. I think a delica or mini griptilian or a hogue dozer would fit right in but I don’t have them at the moment.

    Often it’s just the sak or leatherman though.
  16. Thorfinn


    Sep 28, 2018
    Sorry to respond to my own post above, but I meant to type "hogue ritter" and it won't let me edit it. Thinks I'm spam apparently! :eek:
  17. Kaibab270

    Kaibab270 Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 20, 2019
    I think the only constant for me when looking at a new knife is high quality blade steel. I generally lean more towards stainless. I do prefer US or European production. Other than that I'm kind of all over the place. Titanium never hurts lol
  18. Hickory n steel

    Hickory n steel Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 11, 2016
    I look for traditionals that appeal to me ;)
    That really is pretty much the gist of it, but features I prefer are good slicing blades, usually Carbon steel when I can get it, max of knife blades , and with a two blader I want one smaller than the other.
    Fixed blades just gotta appeal to me, I have preferences but one that speaks to me might not fall in to those preferences.

    Oh an steels, I don't go for the fancy stuff. Just the old school easy sharpen steels that work for me.
  19. gazz98

    gazz98 Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 3, 2008
    Not necessarily in order of importance.
    1. 3-3.75" blade. Endura is my longest blade IIRC.
    2. I prefer a lock. The SAK is the only exception. No traditionals/slipjoints for me.
    3. Handle scales need to be G10, micarta, or frn (or similar). I like the "grippiness".
    4. I don't like metal, carbon fiber, or wood handles. They feel slick to me. The one CF I had was years ago when they first came out. I don't know if they have gotten any grippier since then. I admit that some of the wood handles do look beautiful tho ...
    5. I don't care about knife weight. I'm 6'8" 280 lbs. I don't worry too much about a 4 oz vs 7 oz knife.
    6. I'm probably cheap compared to most people on this forum. $150 is my limit. I don't need Cruwear, M4, or the latest super steel. I still can get a ZT 350, Spyderco PM2, CS Ultimate Hunter with S30V, S35VN, etc. I'm totally content with D2 (Ontario Rat 1), VG10 (Delica and Endura), or 154.
    7. I've probably moved past the entry level knife steels tho. I haven't bought a 8Cr13xx, 440C, 4xx, Aus 8, etc. in many years.

    Yep, Sebenzas are out of my league. I understand I will never own a custom or midtech. For me, if you start talking $300-2,000 (or more) on a knife, I'd rather put that $ toward a firearm.

    After 30 years of carrying a knife. I found what works for me. YMMV. :p

    But if you ever need help with a knife recommendation, I will happily offer a suggestion to spend YOUR money. :D
  20. cbach8tw

    cbach8tw Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 9, 2006
    Overall construction with fit and finish, blade shape, quality materials (very subjective), handle ergonomics, and would I feel comfortable carrying it for several days? Maybe a minor thing, but is it a classic look or tactical? I tend to prefer more traditional patterns.

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