Surely everyone, at one time or another, has been given a pocket knife. Either by a father, a grandfather or in exchange for hard currency by the guy working behind the glass counter in the gas station when you were twelve. They are all special moments in their own way and a rites of passage, especially for twelve-year-old boys.
A pocket knife is like a good pair of boots. You can take them everywhere. And today’s pocket knives are as good looking and well designed as they are high tech and useful. You also don’t have to be going into the woods whittling a spoon around a campfire every other weekend to own a pocket knife. However, if you do go camping, people are protective about their tools so it’s important to have your own. The last thing they want to hear is, ‘Umm, can I borrow your knife for a minute?’ I have heard this question asked a few times, followed by some funny answers (most not repeatable here). One of the best was a simple ‘No.’ Sometimes you can say the most with just a single word.
Which Pocket knife is best for me?
There is a huge array of pocket knives out there and they range from dollar store standard to prices you may not believe. They also vary in style, from a simple blade to a Swiss Army knife with more bells and whistles than Rio during Carnival.
When shopping for a pocket knife, it’s best to look for a name brand with a good reputation. For an everyday carry knife, I think a single blade folding knife is the best option with little chance of anything going wrong. So with that in mind, let’s look at CRKT, one of the best options available to you today.
The Columbia River Knife & Tool Company (CRKT) is the brainchild of two guys (Paul Gillespie and Rod Bremer) from Kershaw Knives with a back-to-basics mentality. Indeed, the name of their first knife that was introduced at the Shot Show was called K.I.S.S. (Keep it Super Simple). After this breakthrough they went on to make knives for some of the biggest names in the business. CRKT are now based out of Oregon and their lineup is second to none. You could hardly go wrong with any of them but let’s look at some of our favorites to help you decide.
Drifter 6450K G10
This is a great everyday utility knife that won’t break your heart or your bank balance if you have to replace it. The CRKT Drifter 6450K G10 is the workhorse of the CRKT range, and certainly no less popular for it.
This is a tough knife with stainless steel liners that make it ideal for heavy, constant use. This is your ‘steel toecap boots’ pocket knife, not your ‘Italian loafers.’ They are damn proud of it and rightly so.
K415KXP Ken Onion Ripple
And now for something completely different. The CRKT K415KXP Ken Onion Ripple is as saucy as a direct hit on a Heinz factory. Ken Onion is famous for the fast revealing Blur, but this knife is all about stealth and seduction.
From the satin finish to the aluminum blade that will eliminate oxidation and any stickiness, this knife is ninja quiet and James Bond smooth. The use of 2Cr13 liners on the blade and the Ikoma Korth Bearing System (IKBS) also show this knife is not just about style, there is considerable substance too.
CKRT are well known for doing things a little differently, so it’s well worth having a look at the CRKT Fossil 3.96″ BLK/STS VEFF SERR. While it does look a little strange and you will no doubt be asked to hand it over by curious onlookers, there is a reason behind each design feature.
The fin at the bottom of the blade forms an excellent finger protector and the hammered scales on the handle provide excellent traction for a super firm grip. The lock is strong, the serrations can add a little more bite to your slice and the ball bearing IKBS means it opens as fast as your five-year-olds presents on Christmas morning.
The guys at CKRT really know what they are doing and if you combine all their collaborations they probably have more experience in this area of knife making than any other brand. Their products are well put together, well thought out and with a level of design that puts some other pocket knives to shame. Basically, any of these knives are worth buying and keeping for years to come.
Image credit via Flickr Creative Commons: James C