Axis be damned! --- LINER-LOCKs Make My Day !!!

Nov 15, 1998
Now that the newness of the Axis has worn off, I must admit I usually carry my KRAIT or even my AFCK. Reports of the liner lock's death are greatly exaggerated!

Nothing related to knives gets me off as much as the sound and feel of a good liner-lock engaging! And I love to flick them open! I can open my KRAIT or AFCK in a heartbeat - and look pretty cool at the same time!

The Axis is great, but it just doesn't move me.

I may be off base here, but as much as I love my space age knives, I still get a major thrill out of a traditional lockback!

There's nothing I love more than the sound of that old Buck 110 locking. I'm hooked to the snap of these things.

I also don't have a problem with liner locks. My Military, Genesis and Spydies hold up just fine.



I know what you mean, that little click when the liner snaps in is strangely satisfying. 'course, a good lockback snapping in is at least as nice! The Axis lock doesn't quite have that snap -- maybe its only disadvantage, but one I'll happily live with

You should check out the Pinnacle. Not only does it have that liner-lock snap, but I find the monolock superior to a liner lock in every way, from strength to reliability. And the greatest feature of all -- when you white-knuckle the handle, instead of risking accidently unlocking it (like a lockback or liner lock), you're actually making the lock-up tighter!

I read oncein the Automatic forum that anything that goes "click" has a high play value. I really must agree with that statement. I love thangs that click (except when they are supposed to go bang). The only thing that is more satifying is the KLACK that my VG makes...I wonder if the Axis looses its play value because of its silence?



"No, it's a Vaquero Grande in my pocket, but I am happy to see you!"
MegaFolderians Unite!!
Dremel Junkies Unite!
Dyslexics Untie!

I'm with Kodiak on this one. I recently got a damascus stag handled Bear MGC version of the Buck 110 and the vaultlike click that it makes when it locks is far different than the soft click of idling flipping open an AFCK. It's also got a much higher quality sounding click than anything with zytel or G10 scales. Unfortunatley, it's still far too stiff to flip open one-handed.

It's not as attention getting as the click on an aluminum handled Paragon auto, but it does sound high quality.

mps--- You know you're totally beyond redemption when you can decribe the subtle differences in sound that your pocketknives make. ;-)
Kodiak got me thinking about my Buck 110 again. I had forgotten what simple pleasures are.

I hadn't had a 110 in over 15 years, so when Savman put a NIB up for sale a few weeks ago, I bought it.

The feeling of holding one in your hand is a little difficult to convey to someone who has never held one. The 110 has a heavy, solid feel, a blade that locks up with a loud pleasing thunk.

Its a product of the 60's. No, it doesn't have hi tech scales or the latest steel or the fanciest lock. Its made with wood and brass!

But it'll hold its own against most of today's designs just as a '66 Corvette could outrun most of today's wundercars.

Maybe it just makes us feel good about a time when cars had carburetors and the only chips we had were made of potatoes :)

Dan...feeling a little nostalgic
That was a great post and I agree with you...maybe I'm showing my age but that 110 was my first real quality knife. When I joined the service nearly 20 years ago everyone had one and so I just got one. My original was ruined when some idiot borrowed it and snapped the tip off using it as a pry bar and I immediately replaced it.

As far as getting a high tech 110---you can! Check out the new Master Series from Buck. I have their 110 with B-42 steel, dyamond wood pistol grip scales and nickel silver bolsters. Gorgeous! Still has that same heft and snap to it, too. There are other variations out there, too. I just bought a walnut scale 110 with nickel silver bolsters from the Bald1. My next search will be for a damascus 110, and then maybe an auto 110 and them maybe............



Now you've done it. Rekindled the 110 bug again!

I saw 2 100 autos at the Gator Knife Show outside Tampa a few weeks ago. Both were from Cumberland. This was the company featured in Tactical Knives a few months ago.

One was the old style that had the release as an oblong extension of the left bolster. It looked weird in a scan I saw a few months ago on the ABC Direct website, but when you hold it, the button falls perfectly under your index finger.

The other was Cumberland's newer design with a round button on the right scale. Sort of like an old Italian stiletto.

Unfortunately, the blade was off center and rubbed the bolster. I don't think it left the factory that way.

Given a choice, I prefer the older style. But the dealer wanted $200 for a knife that has a MSRP of only $150, so I passed.

But I did put it on the "list."

Take care,


I love the sound of my liner lock snapping into place.

But, it did take some effort to get it dialed in just right. And I don't know how long it will stay that way.

Ron Knight

Yeah I'm crazy, but what do you want me to do about it
I have not had my Axis long enough to become disenchanted with it...yet. I have found that it does make a clicking sound if you flick it open. While it is not as loud as some liner-locks it is still enough for me to find it worthy of playing with.
Falcon --

I can't imagine becoming disenchanged with the Axis. The ergonomics are outstanding, and comfortable after even prolonged use. The blade cuts like crazy, especially if you cut a couple degrees off the final bevel. And the point is good and sharp. I like mine more every day I carry it. And you know what? Knowing that I'm not going to accidently unlock by squeezing too hard or bumping the spine or torquing the blade, that's really worth something!

As for as the linerlock vs. the monolock in the "white knuckles test" the same force is applied to the same place. The monolock is even more subjective to fail in this so called test. I don't know why Joe has such a fit with the linerlock but a "bump" to any liner lock I have won't disengage it.
kent38ti - the liner lock is very subject to the white knuckle problems joe speaks of. the monolock, however, is not, at all.
when you white knuckle a liner lock, you are squeezing the scales and part of your finger may accidentally hit the liner, casuing the liner to move, and therefore, possibly closing the blade.
when you white knuckle a monolock, you are squeezing the scales, WHICH ARE ALSO THE LINERS! sorry i got so excited, but this is what makes the integral or mono lock so unique and so much better than a liner lock. every bit of pressure you put on the scales causes the knife to be that much stronger. aside from a few very insignificant similarities, the liner lock does not begin to compare with the monolock, in terms of strength or "white knuckling" problems.
i'm sure that joe can explain this much better than i can.

[This message has been edited by marco (edited 21 February 1999).]
You explained it just fine marco, and got it exactly right.

Keep in mind, though, the ultimate -- and most important -- reason I complain about the white knuckle tests with liner locks but not with monolocks is because it happens both in tests and in the field. I'm nothing if not an empiricist, I'm not gonna try to rationalize why something will fail or not, I'll test it first. I complain about white knuckle failures with lockbacks, too, for exactly the same reason. Monolocks are unaffected by it; so, apparently, are the axis and rolling lock, and Crawford's top lock.

With a monolock, when you white-knuckle the frame, you are pushing the lock (which is itself part of the frame) into the blade tang. In other words, you are driving the lock to lock itself even harder. Crawford's top lock has the same feature -- the harder you grip the frame, the firmer the lockup becomes. It's a really nice feature.

With a liner lock, when you squeeze hard all the pressure is going against the handle scales, none of it against the liner proper. So all that potential reinforcing energy is being wasted, simply bending the handle scales. As you squeeze further, the flesh of your hand sinks in and around the liner itself. If it sinks in far enough, the lock can back out. This isn't just a theory or a guess or personal prejudice against liner locks -- it's happened to me in use, it's happened to many others in use, I can reproduce it in testing with some knives. And, of course, it makes perfect sense, now that I've explained it, I hope

The white knuckle failures should be very easy to avoid on liner locks. Typically, all the maker needs to do is bury the liner a hair below the level of the scales. Pat Crawford is burying his locks really deep in the scales, and making sure the lock gouges hard against the blade tang, to make doubley sure it won't get this kind of failure. I think he's going farther than he needs to, but I applaude the effort.

Hi Marco and Joe,
I guess we will have to agree to disagree. I can take any knife and hold it to the perfect angle and hit it just right on the right surface with just the right wrist motion and make it fail. The benchmade (sebenza knock off) just kind of get's my goat. I have a socom da that has never failed, although I have never "whacked" it hard enough to bend the liner and "fix" (wear the liner out) it. If we are that worried about out folders at differnt thrusting angles then we should carry a fix blade.
All great responses. IMHO, a well made liner lock will not fail or quickly wear.
My Krait and AFCK still give me the most satisfaction.

Regarding the monolock (which I prefer to the axis), there is quality variation in my opinion - I've seen custom monlocks that didn't quite fit. Of course, the Sebenza
is an example of a great monolock!

To sum up, click and flick liner-locks "make me go hmmm....." And, hey, I can close it with one hand!
Joe is 100% correct on this one and with as many tests that he has performed on liner lock failure...I am with him on the Axis Vs. liner locks.

I have tested every liner lock I have (12 in all) including Benchmades and Microtechs and now know which ones to trust to not cut off my fingers in a dynamic thrust that meets with resistance.

Take a look at Joe's test in for more real data. Also take a look at the Microtech forum and see how even the best liner locks made filed 100% of the time with the "Spine Whacker" test that Joe enlightened us with.

As far as the pleasing "KLACK" sound... I like it too, but not enough to sacrifice the fingers on my thrusting hand.

Don't mean to be to strong on this but Joe has done his homework!!!

Joe Talmadge, and anyone else who cares to respond:

How sure are you that your thumb will never bump the Axis Lock release button, causing an accidental disengagement? I've asked this question before, and now that you've used your 710 for awhile, I wonder if you have any light to shed on this. Am I the only person in the universe who is worried about this?

David Rock