A pocket knife is a very important tool in many people’s daily lives. Many times you may have been in a situation where a pocket knife would have come in handy. Maybe you needed to open a box, open a letter, start a fire, or a quick weapon to scare off an enemy. A pocket knife can be a convenient tool to carry around.
Today pocket knives come in many different styles, designs, sizes etc which can make buying the right one a difficult venture. When buying a pocket knife, it’s important to know that you are buying the right pocket knife for the job.
There are three main types of pocket tools including single blade knife that has only one blade, multi blade that has more than one blade and multi tool pocket knife that comes packed with different tools such as a saw, hook, scissors, file, pliers etc.
If you are considering buying a pocket knife, there are important things you should keep in mind to ensure the knife you choose matches your needs and preferences
Important tips to help you choose the idea pocket knife
1. Considering your needs- The first thing you need to consider is the purpose for the pocket knife. Choose a knife that wills serve its purpose. Each pocket knife was made for a specific purpose for example
- Bowie knives- Are ideal heavy-duty all round use. They are heavy and have long blades.
- Hunting knives- Ideal for skinning, gutting, etc. Hunting knives are specifically made for hunting purposes
- Switch blade knives- Are popular amongst military users and law enforcers due to their rapid deployment and ability to be opened with one hand
- Training knives- These often have a dull blade since it’s for training purposes only
- Rescue knives- For emergencies or rescue purposes
If you plan to use the knife daily around the house for opening boxes, letters or helping with minor repairs around the house choose a multipurpose knife that offers scissors, screw driver, and other important tools.
2. Locking mechanism- The locking mechanism keeps the knife from clamping on your hand as you use the blade. There are many locking mechanisms based on your preference. The liner lock is the most popular mechanism. The liner keeps the pocket knife in place by locking it into place when the knife is opened. The liner is secured tightly to the interior of the frame by screws. The lockback mechanism includes a latch that is only disengaged by pressing the latch down to release the blade. A ring lock requires the user to move a ring around the blade’s base to lock and unlock it. A lever lock, also known as switch blades pops the blade open and close.
3. Design and model- There are many designs, colours, and models of pocket knives to choose from. Some popular models include Barlow, crapper, tamper, congress etc. Just like any other product, the most popular brands are obviously expensive than other less popular models. Choose a knife that suits you in terms of color, design and style
4. Opening mechanism- There are three main types of opening mechanisms in pocket knives including manual, assisted opening and automatic. Most pocket knives are opened manually normally with a nail nick that allows the user to open the knife with his nails. In assisted- opening knives, the user needs to apply direct pressure to get the blade. Assisted-opening knives are ideal for hunting or for emergencies. Automatic knives come with a button; the user just needs to push the button for the blade to open.
5. Number of blades- Pocket knives can either be single bladed or have multiple tools. The number of blade depends on the knife’s purpose.
6. Blade material- Blades can either be made of stainless steel, carbon steel, Damascus or high carbon stainless steel. Stainless steel pocket knives are more popular because they are rust resistance. However, they are less durable and dull more quickly than carbon steel knives. Carbon steel on the other hand is durable but is prone to rust. Choose a stainless steel knife if you intend to use it sparingly or in wet conditions. Carbon steel are ideal for heavy duty work
7. Handle material- The handle material can be made of wood, bone, aluminium, leather, rubber, Zytel, plastic, stainless steel. G10. Etc. Basically, the ideal handle material should be durable, light weight and attractive. Aluminium handles are light weight and durable and ideal for outdoor use and carrying around. Wood and bone knives are most popular with collectors, many people find rubber easy to grab however, rubber handles aren’t durable and wear off after some time. Zytel handled knives are great for use in extreme situations. The handle material you choose will depend on the knives purpose and your preferences. Some people prefer rubber, others stainless steel or aluminium.
8. Pricing- Pocket knives come in different prices. Several factors affect the price including the type of knife, handle and blade material, model, design, etc. Choose a knife that is within your budget and suits your needs. Before buying a pocket knife, shop around to find out the different type, materials, shapes, models, and sizes to help you choose a knife that best meets your need and is within budget.
9. Size- Pocket knives vary in size and weight. Typically the size and weight should be determined by the knife’s purpose. If you plan to use the knife outdoors you will want to choose a light knife that is easy to carry around in your pocket
10. Warranty- Some retailers offer a warranty while others don’t. A warranty can help cover the cost of repair in case the knife breaks or doesn’t perform as expected. The warranty is however not as important since pocket knives aren’t that expensive
Make sure the pocket knife you choose will serve its purpose. With the many models, types, sizes, and designs, many people have no idea where to start when buying a pocket knife. The best place to start is to keep in mind the purpose of the knife, your budget, durability and effectiveness, and the features you would want in your ideal knife. Shop around before making your final purchase decision to ensure you get the best pocket knife.
Pocket Knife Links and Resources
Below you’ll find a collection of links to various resources across the web about pocket knives that I think you may find interesting.
Best Articles about Pocket Knives