If you’ve ever been away from home and needed to cut something, you understand how handy a folding knife can be. Whether you use it to open packages, cut wire, slice apples, or as a self-defense tool, having a good folding knife tucked conveniently and discreetly in your pocket means you’ll always have a useful appliance available right at your fingertips.
Folding knives come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and designs. It can be hard to sort through all the options available to find just the right knife to meet your needs, and that’s where we come in with this comprehensive guide.
Use it to help you find the best folding knife to carry so you never get caught empty-handed.
Top 10 Folding Knives Table
|Picture||Name||Blade Length||Price||Rating (1-5)|
|1. Kershaw Ken Onion Blur Folding Knife with Speed Safe (Black Blade)||3.4 inches||$$||4.8|
|2. Buck Knives Folding Hunter Knife||3.75 inches||$$||4.8|
|3. Case Amber Bone SS Peanut Pocket Knife||2.13 inches||$$||4.8|
|4. 008711 Spyderco Sage Linerlock||3 inches||$$$||4.8|
|5. Zero Tolerance ZT0350TS G10 Handle Folding Tiger Striped Blade with SpeedSafe||3.25 inches||$$$||4.8|
|6. Benchmade - Mini Griptilian 555HG Knife, Sheepsfoot||2.91 inches||$$$||4.8|
|7. Kershaw 1660 Ken Onion Leek||3 inches||$$||4.7|
|8. Spyderco Endura 4 Wave Plain Edge Folding Knife||3.8 inches||$$||4,7|
|9. Outdoor Edge Razor-Lite EDC Folding Knife||3.5 inches||$||4.7|
|10. Benchmade - Contego 810 Knife, Reverse Tanto||3.98 inches||$$$$||4.7|
Knowing Which Knives Make the Cut
There really is no one best folding knife. There are numerous points to consider when determining which model and design is most suitable for you.
Since folding knives can be utilized for countless different jobs, from simple household chores to personal protection, one person’s preference may not meet the needs of another.
You’ll need to consider exactly what you expect your folding knife to do, and then choose accordingly. Here are a few things to consider when purchasing a folding knife.
Number of Blades
Some folding knives feature multiple blades, while others focus on just one. Both designs have their own pros and cons.
- Single-Blade Folding Knives. While single-blade knives come in a wide array of shapes and sizes, their beauty really is their simplicity. The focus of this type of folding knife is on one sturdy blade. Some feature locking mechanisms that help hold the blade open for demanding tasks. Many also come with spring-loaded opening mechanisms which allow for immediate access to the blade at the touch of a button.
- Multi-Blade Folding Knives. The biggest advantage of carrying a folding knife with multiple blades is the ability to carry one knife that does the job of several. While a multi-blade knife may have the versatility to skin an animal, carve wood, and slice cheese, what you get in variety often costs you in strength and durability.
Most folding knives come with either a straight-edge blade, a serrated blade, or some combination of both. Each type of blade has its advantages and disadvantages.
- Straight-Edge Blades. The major advantage of this type of blade is how easy they are to sharpen. This blade works well for skinning and shaving but is a poor choice for tasks that involve sawing, such as cutting rope or slicing bread.
- Serrated-Edge Blades. These blades are better at cutting tough materials, although they can be clumsier than a straight-edge blade, making jagged cuts rather than smooth ones. This type of blade may retain sharpness longer, but when it does need to be sharpened, you will probably have to send it back to the manufacturer.
- Combo-Edge Blades. This design offers the best of both worlds. Usually, part of the blade is serrated while maintaining a straight edge on at least a portion of the blade; this allows you to use part of the blade for making smooth cuts, and part of tougher, sawing jobs.
While blade length is largely a matter of personal preference, even just a few inches of length can make a dramatic difference in how the blade performs. A longer blade will generally perform a wider variety of tasks. However, in many locations, there are legal restrictions regarding the length of folding knife blades. Be sure to check your local laws regarding the legality of the knife you choose to carry in public.
Top 5 Best Folding Knife Reviews
The first thing you’ll notice about the Kershaw Ken Onion Blur Folding Knife is the quality; this is a high-quality knife that you will be proud to own and carry. Made of aircraft-grade aluminum, this folding knife is lightweight yet surprisingly strong and durable. The blade is even coated in diamond-like carbon to ensure rust resistance.
The Blur is specially designed with SpeedSafe Assist opening, which allows the user to easily open the blade with just one hand. Just a short push on the thumb stud and the blade springs open in one smooth motion.
The knife has a thin profile making it easy to slip in your pocket and forget it’s even there. The handle’s rubberized coating makes this knife easy to handle and control even when your hands are slippery. Proudly made in the U.S.A. and with quality and durability, it is hands-down the best folding knife available on the market today.
This is the model that made Buck Knives an American icon. The Folding Hunter Knife set industry standards for folding lock blade knives. Sturdy, strong, and steeped in tradition, the Buck 110 Folding Hunter is more than just a good-looking knife.
The natural wood-grain handle and attractive polished brass bolsters aren’t what make this knife stand out. The special heat-treating process that is special to Buck Knives makes for a tough blade that stays sharper longer, even when cutting tough materials.
This knife comes out of the box with a razor-sharp edge, so watch your fingers!
This is the perfect multi-blade pocket knife for household projects and outdoor activities. It features two full-length blades crafted from surgical stainless steel. Its small size allows it to fit easily and discreetly in your pocket, although you may want to show it off instead. It is truly a beautiful piece with its peach seed jig amber bone handle, curved shape, and sharp steel blades.
Surprisingly durable and strong considering its small size, the Case SS Peanut Pocket Knife is proudly hand-crafted in the United States.
This knife features a steel blade that is ground flat for sharpness and precise cutting. The twill-woven carbon fiber handle, with vibrant multi-colored fibers, makes a nice combination with the blade. The woven fibers make deep ridges and texture for your hand to grasp, creating a unique slip-resistant handle that is both attractive and practical.
The whole knife weighs just over 3 ounces, and the compact design makes it easy to forget that you’ve slipped it in your pocket. It fits well in your hand, and the handle is long enough that it won’t leave your pinky hanging.
This is the kind of quality knife that you hand down to your kids. As a bonus, Spyderco donates five percent of Sage sales to the Denver Chapter of The National Alzheimer’s Association.
The most striking feature of this Zero Tolerance folding knife is the stunning Tiger Stripe finish. Made from S30V stainless steel and coated with DLC tungsten this is a beautiful, high-quality blade. It features SpeedSafe manual assist which facilitates smooth and easy opening. It’s so easy that you can quickly deploy the blade while wearing gloves, and you won’t even have to fumble of fidget with the mechanism.
The design is stout but strong and stands up well to heavy-duty usage. Made with law enforcement, military personnel, and first responders in mind, this folding knife can handle hard use with a high level of reliability.
If you’re looking for a tough, versatile, resilient blade, look no further than the Zero Tolerance Folding Knife.