Top five folding knives

by Jack Blade
(Northern Rockies, USA)

Tried and True: Folders

Tried and True: Folders

Here is a list (not in any particular order) of my top five folding knives which I believe would work in an emergency for survival:

- Cold Steel Recon 1
- CRKT Triumph Folder
- Boker Plus Armed Forces Tanto Point Folder II
- SOG Trident Folder
- Kershaw Offset


While a fixed blade would be the preference in a survival situation, things happen which can catch us by surprise and we may find ourselves stuck in a situation with whatever folding pocketknife we happen to be carrying at the time?

The folders on this list I also own and have used outdoors while camping, hunting, hiking etc. Any of the knives on this list would do in a pinch and are of sufficient quality and size to withstand the rigors of use for batoning, cutting wood, food prep etc. As I said in my previous post, there are many other folders made by various makers which would also work in this situation, but I have not used them so I can't speak to there quality or usefulness.

While I would feel fine with any of the knives on this list, my personal favorite is the Cold Steel Recon 1 though the Kershaw Offset and SOG Trident come in a close second! Again with folders I would recommend sticking with name brands and avoid the cheap Chinese knock offs as they will not hold up to survival type rigors.

My preference in folders is for handles which are machined one piece type out of G10, Zytel or 6061 Aluminum. Something with a decent checkering/knurling pattern for a good grip so the knife doesn't slip when my hands are wet or bloody rather than handles with inlays or several pieces since it has been my experience that they fall apart or come unglued with rigorous use!

I also want my knife to lock when it's open and not come unlocked during use which can be dangerous for your fingers. I will touch on the blades as far as the steel but will not go into it in depth here.

Suffice it to say the knives on my list are made of stainless steels like AUS 8 and 440C which I like for survival knives only because of the resistance to rusting. Often you may be caught in a situation without oil or even a way to dry your blade which with carbon steels like O1 is a recipe for rust. I know there are some proponents who won't carry anything but carbon steel knives which is fine since everybody is entitled to their preferences. Some also like plain blades and others like serrated again this is a personal preference and the subject of much debate.

I prefer plain blades for ease of sharpening in a survival situation, but there are others who would argue for serrated blades as being superior for cutting through different materials and such.

In closing what is important is to have a good quality knife on your person in the event something does happen? Better to have and not need than to need and not have is my thinking!

Folding knives!

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My Pocket Knife

by James Loyd
(USA)

My Pocket Knife : Made by Prime Steel

My Pocket Knife : Made by Prime Steel

I carry a PS-214. Its long blade makes it essential for skinning and cutting and its long body makes it ideal to carry on a belt loop or pouch. I use it a lot in camping.


Travel Business

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Knives for use and abuse

by Ryan
(Ellards,Al)

I like many have way too many knives. Cold Steel SRK is a great knife. I carried a Swiss army knife all over the globe. Kabar Marine Corp knife is good. One Kabar quit making that I have is a fixed blade called a Warthog. This is a knife you can split wood with.





A Leatherman tool is a good choice for backup chores. Lots of people over look a small folding saw. They weigh just ounces and keep you from dulling up your knife and are a lot easier to use to build a shelter and get wood.

What ever you carry always carry some type of sharpener you will regret it in a few days of you do not.

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Spelunking survival knife

by Joel
(Chicago)

I enjoy spelunking, but find a fixed blade can be a bit much. I've found that a fixed blade knife will get in the way. Traditionally, I would reject a folding blade for survival purposes, but I got sold on the Buck Folding Omni Hunter 12PT.





The blade, when extended, feels as solid as a fixed blade knife. There's no wiggle at all, it has held up well for me for the last few years.

The 420 steel blade is strong enough to stay sharp, but easy to properly sharpen (I also carry one of those cheap two sided sharpening devices with the ceramic piece on one end).

As well, it comes with a sheath that allows for either being carried vertically or horizontally (I carry it parallel to my belt). I like this, because the idea of needing to fumble for my pocket in an emergency doesn't ring well.

Obviously, this is not a fixed blade knife, but it's compact size makes for a nice trade off when spelunking.

One thing I have noticed: It's rusting. However, it's not the blade, or the locking mechanism, but the portion that is connecting the two halves of the handle. I'm not so sure how fatal that is, but at 50 dollars at Gander Mountain and three years of faithful service, I wouldn't flinch to replace this bad boy in a heartbeat.

Like I said, for standard hiking, I generally prefer a fixed blade, but for spelunking or camping, I find my Buck knife does an excellent job.

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High quality Victorinox knife

by Todd Owen
(Denver,Co)


Being an avid outdoorsman who spends countless hours deep in the backcountry of Colorado with my wife. I have been all too often the first to try the next Big thing when it comes to gadgets and high tech gear. And yes, even those really cool knives that look as though you could build a house with them. I am here to tell you when looking for ANYTHING that your OWN life and your FAMILIES life may one day depend upon. I ask that you think of one thing and one thing only..... QUALITY !!!!


Its NOT the NAME or the brand that counts ....

Yes Yes, I know there are always some great cool little toys out there that look sweet in your BOBs or in your little carry all Survival kits.
But don't hesitate to drop the extra cash for something that FEELS durable and looks like it was really crafted from something other than cheap metals or fabrics.



I personally carry the VICTORNOX multi tool on me at ALL times except when sleeping, which however even then it always near me. I acquired this guy a few years ago before the market was flooded by all the cheap 20 dollar brand ones that would hold up for a few months then break into. Given I paid over 180 bucks for this guy, BUT !!!! its always there. It never let me down. It's always ready to cut whatever, I need it to cut. I carry it with me everywhere I go, so much so I have a second one I keep in my own Survival bag as a back up.

I am not saying run out and drop 200 bucks on a knife. I am saying INVEST in quality not LOOKS. I know the 25 dollar RAMBO knives at the Flea Market look great and have a ton of gear inside of them. But do you really wanna chance your own life or your families life on some cheap knock off knife that has 30 cents where of thread in it and a compass filled with water...... I Don't !!!!!

Happy Survival To All

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Favorite knife

by Tom
(Aztec, New Mexico)

My favorite knife/tool is the Leatherman Wave. It is larger than others but still small enough to be comfortable in your pocket. I also like the selection of tools on it.





The wood/bone saw is superb. The blades are safe as they lock in place. All of the "normal" tools are useful and strong. The scissors is handy but the unique tool is on the back of the metal/wood file, that is the the diamond sharpener.

Most stainless steel blades are too hard to sharpen on a rock in the field. It also works great for sharpening fish hooks and saw blades. I never leave home without it.

It's almost traumatic flying on a plane and having to check it in my suitcase. LOL

Good luck

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Buck 110 Folding Alaskan Guide Knife

by Jeff c
(Massachusetts)

This knife is a favorite of mine for almost all survival needs. Some will say a fixed blade is best, and i can understand that. However, the 110 folder is very easy to carry and is very tough (especially in s30v steel, which can be purchased through cabela's for $70.00).

I am far more apt to carry a reasonably sized folder than a larger fixed blade. Of course if you plan a trip in the outdoors a fixed blade of 4-6 inches has proven to be a very good performer.

In closing, like you have been told time and time again, the best knife/tool for survival is the one you have with you, and the knife i carry everyday is the buck 110 s30v.

By the way all buck knives have the 4-ever warranty. Buck is that sure their products will last.

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My Swiss Army knife

by Kevlarious
(The Northern West Coast Rainforest - Vancouver - BC - Canada)

Every knife I carry daily : Will forever be my bestest friend

Every knife I carry daily : Will forever be my bestest friend

My grandpa Cardinal ... gave me skill and knowledge. From my first folder to my first .303 S.M.L.E at 6 yrs old ... The gun , at rest up on my wall , is just that a gun. The knife in my pocket , that perfect tool . At such a young age , having both knife and camera and active outdoor adventurers like grand-pa and Dad and Mom .. has left me secure in my adaptive and ever growing knowledge of survival / wilderness harmony and comfort .





I have yet to hunt using all methods , I have yet to fish using every technique ... so I continue to carry a knife , a survival kit , an open mind and the will to survive, to be green and growing : opposite to red and dying . To learn something new and useful, the ultimate game of life and death .

- My Swiss Army knife , the one on my hip is approaching 20 years of continuous carry.

- My lockback folder , the LB7 from the old American made SHCRADE company , shit that blade is 15 + years on my hip .. and trust me it is hip to carry.

- A Maglight ( The 2 X AA cell L.E.D ( White )

- My Leatherman PST II

But if I go out , I do take what the outing requires. Upgraded first aid kit ( Occupational First Id Kit as per Work Safe BC requirements / my ticket level).

Shelter , food , clothing can all be captured / manufactured and derived from ingenuity and adaptability , as long as you have a steel mind and the mind to use steel .

Flint is nothing without a 90 deg. edge to strike with. Tinder is hard to come by when without THE tool to gather it .

With steel , in it's variant forms .. leads to comfort and survival ! Do not sell your ass cheap . Take three knives everywhere ... quality knives .. and keep your mind clear .. You will survive !!

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