All You Need To Know About Best Pocket Knives

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  • There is no exaggeration to say pocket knives are one of the most useful gear for people in both daily use and outdoor activities. Folding pocket knives help handle countless tasks from slicing open boxes to cutting things off to defending against crimes. The below QnA targets at providing an overview for those who're finding the best quality pocket knives.

    What type of knife should you carry?

    Due to the limitation of this post, we will only focus on the pocket knives coming in folding design, not fixed blades. You can choose between a single-blade knife and a multi-blade model, it all depends on your personal preferences. If you want a strong and sturdy knife for harsh and demanding work, the single-blade style is the best choice. Multi-blade pocket knives, on the other hand, grant you several more blade types that can be used in various situations but they are less durable and not as strong as the single-blade counterparts.


    A great pocket knife not only is equipped with good materials and a reliable locking mechanism but a suitable blade type is also essential. Blade type or blade shape, in other words, decides what use purposes it is ideal for. Whether you are looking for an all-purpose daily use knife or one that excels at hunting and outdoor activities, you will always be able to find a top folding knife for your tool kit. There are a few blade types to consider for light tasks such as clip point, drop point, straight-back, and pen blade. Those to consider for wood carving or hunting might be spey-point, wharncliffe, and sheepsfoot blade.

    What to consider when buying a folding knife?

    The history of pocket knives have been lasting for so many centuries hence creating a big enough room for lots of technology evolutions and style branching. It can take you days to do a complete research in the sea of options to find out the best rated pocket knife, therefore, the following part aims to walk you through several basic factors and help narrow down the pool of choices.


    Picked For You: 5 Best Pocket Knives for Everyday Carry: A Comprehensive Guide


    Blade steel


    The quality of the alloy being used directly influences your knife’s cutting performance and ability to maintain sharp edges. Consider the high-quality steel with good corrosion-resistant ability and fine polished edge for the best use in a long time.


    Blade length


    Because of the versatile use and excellent strength of blade at medium-length (2.75-4 inches), almost all best rated pocket knives are brought to life in this size. Medium blade is small enough to be portable and at the same time large enough to tackle intense tasks. Smaller size of blades will clearly be less weight and easier to carry, however, it tends to fail during tougher use. Whereas, the large size blades (over 4 inches) are prone to cause burdensome as they are heavier and more dangerous.


    Regarding the legality of using pocket knives, small-sized blades seem to be legal almost everywhere while larger size items normally don’t meet certain law requirements. It’s necessary to check the law while browsing through your options.


    Handle Materials


    A best folding knife without a doubt needs to have a high-quality blade handle. Keep in mind to look for a handle that can fit in your entire palm and be shaped to stay tight in your hand while in use. Let’s take a look at the most common types of handle materials as follows.

    • Aluminum is lightweight and durable. A handle made of aluminum often covered with a protective film thereby is suitable for extreme weather conditions.
    • Celluloid is a synthetic plastic made from cellulose nitrate, so it can easily be fabricated to look like natural materials for example wood, pearl, amber, ivory, or even tortoiseshell.
    • Wood offers a wide range of options from blackwood to rosewood to bubinga and many more.
    • G-10 is a composite material that is made out of fiberglass and resin. This makes it incredibly strong, lightweight, durable, and water-resistant. They mostly use G-10 in tactical and survival knives which are usually used in extreme circumstances.
    • Zytel is thermoplastic and basically unbreakable as it is resistant to impact and abrasion. For this reason, Zytel becomes a popular material for pocket knife handles.

    Opening mechanism


    The opening mechanism dictates the speed and comfort level when being in use of your knife. The top rated pocket knives will make you feel comfortable and convenient when dealing with daily-level tasks.

    • Manual-opening blade literally means using the hand to open the blade. In this case, nail nick and thumb stud are the two most common methods to do the trick. While you need to use both hands with the nail-nick opening method, the thumb-stud way allows you to open your blade with just one hand.
    • Switchblade mechanisms offer a fast and automatic way to open the blade by just a simple push of a button or switch. That’s why using switchblade pocket knives are restricted by law, so you should carefully check the local knife laws before purchasing one.

    Locking mechanism


    Safety in use is no doubt a serious concern of every knife user. When your pocket knife is engaging, the locking mechanism takes responsibility for keeping the blade open to avoid accidentally snapping down and cutting your fingers.

    Who makes the best pocket knives?

    Behind any great pocket knives is no doubt a great production team. It is not difficult to list out some of the biggest names of the industry such as Victorinox, Buck, SOG, Kershaw, Gerber, Spyderco, Schrade, and so on. All of them keep striving to upgrade products’ quality and service in order to compete for the title world's best pocket knives. For that reason, you can totally trust in their brand name and good quality pocket knives. Some of the best-selling models from these brands as following:

    • Victorinox: the SwissChamp, SwissTool, and Classic SD.
    • Buck: the Model 110, Stockman, and Cadet.
    • SOG: the Trident, Fielder, Aegis, and Flash II.
    • Kershaw: the Blur, Leek, and Scallion.
    • Gerber: the Gerber Gator folding knife and Bear Grylls pocket knife.
    • Spyderco: the Tenacious, Endura, and Delica 4.
    • Schrade: the Uncle Henry Stockman, Old Timer Minuteman, and Schrade Viper.

    How much do high quality pocket knives cost?

    Pricing is always an important consideration for most people. The available offerings have a wide range of price tags from under $30 to over $250. Plenty of users are satisfied with the economical choice of a $30 pocket knife as it is completely functional and can get the job done. However, if you want to own the best pocket knife with high-performance and long-lasting service, you need to spend around $60. At the price range from $60 and above, the options mostly offer higher quality materials, and fancier look with nicer flourishes. From $250 and up, you are able to afford a premium knife made from exotic steel and rare handle material, which makes it more for collector’s items.


    There is still a ton of knowledge about pocket knives to be discussed. That’s why this article is just a summarized look at the most fundamental aspects of pocket knives. We hope it will be a starter guide on your journey of finding out which pocket knife is your best pick.

  • One workflow we have done is to export the sketchup materials as .skm files, which do keep the enscape material data.


    I have often run into the above mentioned downside - people change/rename materials to make it look a certain way in sketchup, breaking how it looks in Enscape.


    I usually end up doing all the material work in the site model, then making sure they get applied to the correct surfaces in the building model when I import it.


    The Material Replacer extension is a godsend for this function, the Material Tools are also very useful!

  • hercules97

    Changed the title of the thread from “Model Workflow - materials” to “All You Need To Know About Best Pocket Knives”.