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Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by Appalachia, Jul 12, 2012.

  1. Appalachia


    May 28, 2012
    Serrations or No Serrations?

    Myself, I love good serrations, and I just wanted to share a few quick "pros" that I've found of serrated and half-serrated knives, as well as maybe convince some peiple to try em' out because lots of the knife community seems to poo-poo them.

    -Sharpening pencils, heavy duty whittling, etc.
    -Cutting cordage and tubing
    -Cutting thick materials (cardboard, hard plastic, sheet metal)
    -Minor sawing tasks
    -Cutting down plant stalks and bamboo
    -Superior edge retention
    -Cut when dulled
    -Tearing into stuff :D

    These are just things I've found. Serrations do inhibit tasks like shavings, feather sticks, and other fine work, but a large serrated/half blade paired with a smaller plain edge seems to provide the most capabilities for knife tasks.

    Also, my favorite serrations are Kershaw and ESEE.
  2. marcinek


    Jan 9, 2007

    And if they "...inhibit tasks like shavings, feather sticks..." how could they be good for sharpening pencils?

    Though they may be superior for cutting sheet metal, as you claim. That's not something I do with a knife.
  3. sja2249


    Feb 11, 2006
    When I was working offshore, my EDC knife was semi-serrated. At first, I didn't like this because I have never satisfactorily sharpened serrations. I grew to appreciate serrations when I had to cut through things like fire hose, bulldog tape, manila rope, duct tape, etc. There is something very comforting in knowing that I can cut through heavy stuff FAST. That capability has never saved my life, but it has protected myself and others from some potentially dangerous situations.

    These days, my cutting duties are pretty light and I prefer to carry a plain edge knife that is easier for me to sharpen.

    The only reason I carried a semi-serrated knife initially was because my chosen knife was only available semi-serrated. That Buck Odyssey in ATS-34 served me very well for several years.

  4. aquaman67

    aquaman67 Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 27, 2012
    If you ever have to cut hard plastic like a plastic clothes hanger.

    Or the brass ends off of a wet fire hose.

    Both of which I've had to do.
  5. Appalachia


    May 28, 2012
    You've obviously never tried sharpening a pencil with a serrated knife, tons easier...

    I'm talking about ultrafine shavings, where you may need a more precise, thin cut. I'm just sharing an opinion, no need to over-analyze it.
  6. marcinek


    Jan 9, 2007
    I didn't realize over-analyzing was against the rules. You should have said that at the beginning! :D Maybe after your bullet points.

    As for serrated knives being easier to sharpen pencils with, you must be right...that explains all those serrated kiridashis.
  7. marcinek


    Jan 9, 2007

  8. Appalachia


    May 28, 2012
    I have no time to argue. It's nonsensical to object to what works for someone in their personal experience. No need to get off-topic.

    Thanks for the reply.
  9. bdmicarta

    bdmicarta Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 16, 2012
    I have some combo edge knives but I don't recall that I've ever used the serrations for anything, so more recently I've tried to stick with plain edge knives. However I recognize that there are a few things that serrations are good for so I'm trying an experiment- I bought a Byrd Hawkbill fully serrated knife to carry in addition to my normal plain edge folder. I will see how it works and how often I have a use for it.

    I've read here that if the serrations are sharp they will push cut through most materials just as well as a plain edge will, and that makes sense at least for soft materials. As for carving wood I just don't know because I've never tried it.
  10. marcinek


    Jan 9, 2007
    Who's arguing or going off topic? I'm just trying to convince you to abandon serrations and stop poo-pooing plain edges! :thumbup: I have found that a properly maintained plain edge does everything a serrated knife can, just as good if not better....and it's easier to maintain.
  11. De Plano

    De Plano

    Jun 28, 2012
    I personally I like the half serrated blades for cutting line in a hurry, but there is plenty of things I need the non serration for also.

    But that is just me. It does suck not being able to sharpen them well
  12. Dorito Monk

    Dorito Monk

    Nov 17, 2008
    On the contrary, you have all the time in the world to argue. The internet isn't going anywhere, so you might as well take your coat off and stay a while. :D ;)

    I've owned a few partially-serrated knives and I can't say I've been a big fan of them. With serrations being a total pain in the balls to sharpen, I find they're a long run for a short gain when it comes to combo-edge knives.

    That said, I have found that there are some advantages to serrations: while they don't cut or slice overly well at the best of times (from what I've seen), so they're not much good for fine work, they can be used for ripping and tearing jobs (like cutting carpet, cutting loads and loads of cardboard, etc) long after they get dull. I just bought my first fully-serrated knife, a Maxix 2, but haven't had much chance to use it yet. I'm interested to see how it fares.
  13. CWL


    Sep 15, 2002
    If you post something on a forum with your point of view, you'd better be expecting others with different and opposing views. I you've got "no time to argue", don't bother posting then.

    Not everyone is going to agree with you and you'll have to get used to that.

    As for me? I think that any of my sharpened knives will out-whittle and out-sharpen a SE knife. I haven't seen any SE blades that can whittle human hair...
  14. medicguy


    Feb 11, 2011
    I agree with you...serrated knives are underrated. I have a well-used Spyderco Rescue that I carry at work every day (firefighter-paramedic) and it still cuts through pretty much anything. I've never had to sharpen it after hundreds if uses, cutting all kinds of materials, such as plastic, clothes, rope, fire hose, straps, seatbelts, etc. (not phonebook paper) and it still cuts great. For people that sit at a desk with their expensive knives and flick them open and closed all day long, admiring the mirror edges, I guess plain edge is the way to go. For people that actually cut things, serrated edges are quite useful.
  15. gkeenang


    Mar 8, 2012
    I agree, but I also like to have a plain edge so I go combo. without both edges I feel like a knife is less of a tool. This is my opinion and YMMV
  16. WillardCorspe


    May 3, 2012
    What do you guys think of three point serrations, such as those found on the combo edge of a Tenacious?


    ... Versus serrations like the ones on this Leek?


    I find combo-edges to suit an urban EDC quite well, given that my cutting tasks vary greatly from day to day. I have found little difference in the quality of performance, other than the 3 point serrations tear more, while the more even serrations provide a smoother draw on each cut.
  17. woody d

    woody d Banned BANNED

    Jan 29, 2010
    for whatever reason i never owned a knife with a fully serrated blade, so when i ordered my Spyderco Police i decided this would be the knife. ive used it a bit around the house and found that it is one heck of a tomato slicer.:D it currently is clipped on my edc Maxpedition bag and its gonna stay there. seems like too usefull of a knife to leave at home.
  18. Franciscomv


    Feb 7, 2005
    I've always prefered plain edges, they've worked well for me through the years in the many different job positions and hobbies I've had. At the farm, hunting, sitting behind a desk, travelling on horse, etc. None of my main carry knives are serrated.

    However, I do like to have a serrated blade in my multitool or SAK (right now I've got a serrated Wenger in my pocket). Every once in a while they come in handy.
  19. djjonny


    Jan 11, 2012
    Why do have to complicate matters ? :D (kidding)

    Disagree with sharpening pencils. Try using any ZT serrations for that
    Disagree with sheet metal.
    Last edited: Jul 13, 2012
  20. bad_juju

    bad_juju Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 7, 2011
    I agree with medicguy. My knives with combo edges are great. If i'm stuck using my knife on calls all day with no chance to sharpen it and it gets dull because lets face it we have to cut some pretty crappy things with our work knives sometimes, those serrations can be a life saver. They cut even after they are dulled.

    WillardC, I personally prefer the scallop serrations of kershaw/ zt

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