How To Choose a Spyderco or Folding Knife

Everyone needs a pocket knife! But, there are hundreds if not thousands of pocket knives and folding knives available. The first step is to determine if you would like a traditional pocket knife or a tactical-style folder. How can you determine which is best for you? Well, you have come to the right place! There are a number of factors to consider when choosing the right spyderco or folding knife that will give you a starting point.

  1. Do you prefer tactical folders or traditional pocket knives?

If you are not sure, follow this checklist to determine which type you might like better.

  1. What size knife would you like?

If you prefer a large knife, traditional options include the full-size trapper and stockman. Most tactical knives are larger, so a multitude of options are available. If you would prefer a smaller knife, there is a wide range of traditional patterns available and most tactical manufacturers do make smaller variations, such as the Benchmade Mini-Griptilian.

  1. What steel type would you prefer?

To a lot of knife owners, steel type really does not matter. If a traditional carbon steel or a stainless steel like 440C or AUS8 is acceptable, any good quality knife will have decent steel that will serve well. If a fancier steel is preferred like D2, or the newer stainless steels, these are far more available in the tactical folder market. Traditional knives in a supersteel tend to be much more expensive, but they are available.

  1. Do you want a lock to hold the blade open during use?

If so, then you will likely prefer a tactical knife. Almost every tactical knife uses some form of lock to prevent the blade from accidentally closing while you are using it. This feature is available on a few traditional knives, but is rare.

  1. Do you prefer natural wood or bone handles or do you like modern synthetic handles?

If you prefer natural warm materials, you will be interested in the handle materials available on traditional knives. If you like synthetic handle materials, you will probably prefer those found on tactical knives.

  1. Do you want an assisted opening or a thumb stud or hole to aid in quick opening?

If so, you will probably want a tactical knife. A very few traditionally-styled knives have some form of stud or hole, but they are very rare.

  1. Would you like more than one blade?

If multiple blades are desired, traditional pocket knives are likely your preferred knife. If you only want one blade, consider tactical folders, since most are only available with one blade.

  1. Do you want to carry the knife in your pocket or do you want to carry it clipped to your pocket edge?

If you want to carry your knife in your pocket, you will probably carry a traditional pocket knife. Most tactical models have pocket clips pre-installed.

By finding out your preferences in these areas, you can start to determine which knife would be best for your uses. If you decide on a traditional pocket knife, companies like Case Knives, Boker Knives, and Buck Knives line of traditional knives. If a tactical knife is more your style, consider Benchmade Knives, Spyderco Knives, or Kershaw Knives.

By Olivia Bradley

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