6 Best Pocket Knife Picks for the Modern Man

pocket knife

How To Find The Best Pocket Knife

Pocket knives have been one of those gadgets a man should have. They are timeless and take us back to the stone age time when we had to hunt for our food. Then they used to be made using bone as handles. Therefore having the best pocket knife you can get is a pretty cool thing. Although man has evolved and has no need for one who knows it might one day come in handy. And as long as you have one you will find something to do with it.

When choosing the perfect pocket knife, it might be worth basing the selection on the types of blades that it has. After all, the pocket knife might be a tiny tool, but it is still a knife with blades for cutting. Some people prefer pocket knives with single blades. Others prefer pocket knives with multiple blades. The quality, elegance, slimness and ease to handle are just but some of the features that the knife should have.

Qualities a Good Pocket Knife Should Have

Depending on your preferences, you could choose a simple or complex pocket knife. But whether you do, here are several qualities you should at least have

 Blade Type

A pocket knife is all about the blade so be sure to check it out properly. If a pocket knife has several blades, you have to understand the purpose or use of each blade. If you want a pocket knife with the ability to make clean cuts, choosing one with straightedge blades would be a good decision. Pocket knives with straightedge blades are very common and popular because they are easier to sharpen. On the other hand, if you travel to a location where you will do a lot of sawing, pocket knives with straightedge blades would be a wrong choice. In such a case, you are better off carrying a pocket knife with serrated blades. If you consider both types of blades a necessity, then choose pocket knife that has the two.

Other types of blades worth considering when buying the best pocket knife include:

  • Needle point
  • Pen knife
  • Hawkbill
  • Drop point
  • Clip point

The size of the blade also matters, depending on what you want to use the pocket knife to do. If you consider versatility an important feature, then choose a pocket knife with medium-sized blades. The medium-sized blades are between 3 and 4 inches in length. The medium-sized blades are perfect because of their ability to withstand heavy usage. In some places, walking or traveling around while carrying large pocket knives is considered a violation of the law. For that reason, the medium-sized blades are the perfect choice as they ensure that you carry versatile tools, while adhering to the local laws.

A pocket knife’s blades are made from carbon steel or stainless steel. What you consider the material of choice might be very different from what somebody else believes is the perfect for them. Therefore, when buying the knives as gifts, take time to learn the recipient’s tastes and preferences. With this information, you will not go wrong with your choice of pocket knife. However, it is worth remembering that stainless steel blades are not as long lasting as the carbon steel. Stainless steel blades grow dull or blunt faster. Carbon steel blades are more susceptible to stain and rust.

Type of Handle

The handles are the next most important features of the best pocket knife after blades, blade sizes and blade materials. The handles must be made from durable materials. The handles must be lightweight and attractive. With this in mind, it is not difficult to see why aluminium is the preferred material for the handles on pocket knives. Aluminium handles are not only durable, but also light. Since the pocket knife should be light and easy to carry around, the blades and handles have to be light as well. When carrying the pocket knives for a bit of outdoor activities, the weight becomes a very important factor.

The durability of titanium makes it a good choice in terms of materials for the handles of the best pocket knives. Titanium handles are not only beautiful, but also light, thus the perfect choice for pocket knives. However, in terms of cost, the stainless steel handles are less expensive than the titanium handles. In terms of weight, the stainless steel handles are a bit heavier than titanium handles, thus the wrong choice for outdoor lovers who do not want to walk or travel around carrying heavier tools in their pockets, bags or hands. The best pocket knife should never be burdensome.

If you consider the durability of the handles the most important feature, then it might be wise to buy pocket knives with zytel handles. The unbreakable nature of zytel makes it perfect when in need of a pocket knife that can handle heavy usage. Kraton is a similar material to zytel, thus a good handle for pocket knives. Kraton makes the pocket knife easier to handle. It is common to see pocket knife lovers showing a preference for knives fitted with rubber handles. Pocket knives with rubber handles are ideal for hunting and other sporting activities. The problem with rubber is that it is not durable, thus shall require constant repairs and replacing.

Opening Mechanisms

The choice of pocket knives also depends on the opening mechanism. The three common opening mechanisms are:


The manual opening mechanism uses a nail nick, which is a small indentation on the side of the blade. You can insert one of your fingernails in the nail nick and flip the blades open. Look for pocket knives with thumb stud blades, if you desire open-handed knives. The thumb stud blades allow you to place your thumb in the hole appearing on the blade, before pulling it open. The manual opening mechanism is easy to handle.


The assisted opening mechanisms are not very common. With this mechanism, you have to apply some pressure on the blade to open it. The assisted mechanism is a great choice if you need to access your blade fast. This mechanism is ideal for hunters and survivalists who face different scenarios. This mechanism is not very popular with pocket knife enthusiasts primarily because it resembles switchblades.


Pocket knives with automatic opening mechanisms are also known as switchblades. This is because you have to push a lever or button to open the blade. In the US and other countries, they are considered as dangerous weapons. Therefore, be careful and know the laws of where you are before you carry an automatic pocket knife.

 Locking Mechanisms of a Pocket Knife

Once open, the pocket knife or blade must remain open until you shut it down. The blade requires an effective locking mechanism. The most common locking mechanisms include:

  • The liner
  • The mid-lock
  • The lock back
  • The ring lock
  • The lever lock
  • The slip joint


To many people, the choice of the best pocket knife is all about the pricing. The perception many buyers have is that the pocket knife that costs more is the best in terms of quality and performance. Normally, if the pocket knife costs less than $30, do not have very high expectations of it. The materials used to make such a pocket knife are of a poorer quality. Such knives would function just as well, although not last as long as you would want it to but give you value for money.

If you want the best pocket knife, then expect to pay a price that ranges from $30 to $100. Such knives are made using some of the sturdiest materials. They last  long and do not break easily. One of the best things about them is that they do not go through periods of repeated malfunctioning. Such a knife can last a lifetime, thus saving you from spending money repeatedly making new purchases to replace a damaged or faulty one.

With a bit of research, you can find pocket knives that cost more than $100. However, such knives are not designed for repeated or daily usage. Such knives are meant for collectors. In fact, depending on a number of factors, a collector can pay hundreds of dollars to buy a pocket knife that is on display and has a good story behind its existence. With the passage of time, the collector-worthy knife increases in value. If you find such a knife, buy it for its resale value. Later, look for collectors interested in buying such and make a huge profit.

Best Types of Pocket Knives

This is a short list, but no way conclusive, of the best pocket knives you would find in the market

  • Benchmade Griptilian

Benchmade Griptilian

This midsized pocket knife scores highly in terms of durability and appearance. The blade is made from stainless steel. It weighs no more than 2.9 ounces. When closed, this pocket knife measures around 4.5 inches. With the AXIS lock mechanisms, you never have to worry about the blade clamping back down thus injuring your fingers.



  • Buck Knives 110

Buck Knives 110

This is the perfect pocket knife for hunting expeditions. Its iconic feel and appearance makes the pocket knife popular with almost all users. It operates using the lock back closing mechanisms. The pocket knife’s stainless steel blades are rust-resistant. The sturdiness of the pocket knife ensures that you can use it to perform heavy-duty tasks without any problem.


  • Kershaw Leek

Kershaw Leek

The pocket knife is not only beautiful, but also affordable. The opening system that uses SpeedSafe technology enhances your security when using the pocket knife. A single hand movement is all that it takes to open and use the blade. It has an extremely sharp stainless steel blade. The delicate blade tip makes this knife a poor choice for heavy-duty usage.



  • Spyderco Tenacious

Spyderco TenaciousSpyderco Tenacious

Spyderco Tenacious

Spyderco Tenacious


Pocket knife enthusiasts are often unable to show their love for this pocket knife. The pocket knives are not only easily recognizable, but also ergonomically sound. This pocket knife is ideal for people in search for tactical knives. The safe locking and opening systems on the pocket knife, added to its durability make this knife the best for heavy-duty purposes.

  • SOG Flash II

SOG Flash II

This pocket knife is a trendsetter. It is the unit by which all pocket knives are measured. The knife has set the standards and won several adulations in the best pocket knife category. Its blade is durable and partially serrated. Its assisted opening technology makes the pocket knife to operate smoothly and fast. Its locking system prevents the pocket knife from deploying accidentally.


  • Chris Reeve Sebenza

Chris Reeve Sebenza

This is the trendsetter when it comes to innovation and quality. The simple yet durable features of this pocket knife make it a very attractive addition for your outdoor tools and equipment. The knife feels very comfortable in the hand. It comes in large and small sizes. To acquire this pocket knife, you need to part with not less than $450.



Caring for the Best Pocket Knife

Owning a pocket knife yet being ignorant about its care  is ill advised. If the pocket knife is to serve you well, taking good care of it in the following manner is crucial.

  • Strive to use the knife for its intended purpose. Some pocket knives are good for multiple purposes. Other pocket knives have much narrower range of uses. Learn the differences and stick to them, as a way of ensuring that it lasts as long as it should. Remember that the pocket knife is not a can opener, pry bar, or screwdriver.
  • Learn to clean the pocket knife regularly. Oil the knife as regularly as possible. After cutting any object, clean the knife to remove all the residues that might cause bluntness. Clean with soapy water. Then dry the pocket knife focusing on the blades and handles. Afterwards, apply oil on the knife before storing it. Storing a wet knife makes it susceptible to corrosion.
  • Sharpen the pocket knife where necessary. Ensure that the pocket knife is sharp at all times. Sharper knives are easier, efficient and safer to use. Use sharpening stones to sharpen the pocket knife. Sharpening sticks are also very effective in ensuring that the pocket knife does not lose its sharp edge.
  • Learn to store the pocket knife properly. When not using the knife, dry and store it. Ensure that the storage space is dry and not full of moisture. Leather sheathes are not good for storing the pocket knife. Knives made from low-quality materials require more effort to maintain and avoid rust.

Lastly, do not forget that even the best pocket knife can malfunction if you do not take good care of it. Be aware of the features of your pocket knife and use it only for its intended purpose. Store your pocket knife in a dry place so its not affected by corrosion or rust.