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cheap knife to buy under 15$?

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by assassino, Nov 13, 2014.

  1. GlockandBalls


    Jul 30, 2013
    Great suggestion! If he likes ultra light and small with an awesome flipper then he will definitely like it.
  2. GlockandBalls


    Jul 30, 2013
    This is good advice. You should buy a $15 dollar knife as you are planning to do. In doing so you will save money... Then when you have the means you can buy the knife of your dreams.

    Also, when you get to that next tier, the Rat 1 destroys the Utilitac. I have several of each and its not even in the same ballpark. The FFG makes the Rat a much better slicer. The blade shape is a proven homerun and its not a recurve like the Utilitac with a ridiculous ricasso. The only caveat would be if you want a tanto blade as its not available in the Rat 1. As I said earlier, look at this stop pin on the Rat 1. Its double the size of the Utilitac. Also the Rat gives you more handle color options which is awesome, and the handle is bit more comfortable. Do research and watch/read reviews and see which one wins out. Its not even a comparison. The Rat 1 is a holy grail value blade with a cult following.


    Last edited: Nov 13, 2014
  3. Woodcamo Nut

    Woodcamo Nut

    Apr 15, 2014
    I have both the Rat 1 and Enlan EL01.... the Rat 1 definitely is a better slicer, but the Enlan EL01 has a thicker liner lock and is stronger than the Rat 1. Also the Rat 1's heat treatment is not the best for an AUS-8......Cold Steel's AUS-8 is better.

    for 15 dollars the Enlan EL01 just crushes the Rat 1.

    not hating on the Rat 1, I actually carry it everyday at work currently.


    Feb 2, 2014
    An opinel.
  5. WuGod


    Aug 10, 2014
    I love my $18 kershaw chill, double steel liner, comfy in pocket, came razor sharp and fun and smoove to flip.
  6. assassino


    Nov 13, 2014
    How about Tac force or M tech? Any experiences with these 2 anyone?
  7. dwong


    Sep 14, 2008
    $14 Mora Robust is a great knife for cheap.
    $1 cheap knife is a buck too much...
  8. midnight flyer

    midnight flyer Basic Member Basic Member

    Jan 12, 2009
    assassino, be careful of the hardcore, adamant, in your face, leave no air in the room fan boys that champion a knife. As you can see, there are a lot of good suggestions here, and not a dud in the bunch of knives you see or have been suggested.

    As long as you manage your own expectations, you will be happy with any of the knives suggested as far as performance within its price class. Will more dough buy you more knife? Likely. But if $15 is your budget (been there, done that myself when other financial responsibilities came calling) then get the best knife you can for $15 you can get!

    I see you are new here, (welcome aboard, by the way!) so you should know that these threads ALWAYS go the same way. ALWAYS. If you ask for a $25 blade, someone will suggest that you spend $50 and get a better knife. If you ask for a $50 blade, others will trash the suggestions made and tell you to spend just $25 more and you will get a much better knife. You just go up the dollar scale until one of the Chris Reeves/Sebenza guys pop in and tell you "get a Sebenza and be done with it".

    Fan boys will come and tout their favorite knife, then bickering and posturing follow. Then the classic, gentle warning from the moderator to keep on topic occurs. This is the classic Blade Forums "Circle of Life" when asking about a blade within a budget.

    Find something you like that has a satisfactory steel, looks good to you (if you are just getting into knives, this won't be your last!), has a good reputation and a knife that folks here actually own before they suggest it.

    After looking at this whole thread again, I am sticking my earlier suggestion of the Kershaw Crown which has been a solid performer for me for about three years or so. Great little knife, and as noted actually falls into your requested budget!. And since Kershaw gives the same ironclad guarantee for their economy line that you get with their expensive stuff, that makes this $12 knife really hard to beat.

    Seen both of these at the gun shows in the "gas station knife" category. They look and feel cheap, and are made for looks over performance. Thin liners, flimsy locking mechanisms, plastic handles, and unknown steels are the mark of those knives. I would suggest you stay away. As an example, compare them to the Crown's pic posted by G&B. and you can see the difference just from the picture. The Crown has an indestructible handle of real micarta! Look at the size of the solid, stainless steel bolsters... made for long term work. The combination of the micarta and those large, solid bolsters make the knife feel really nice in the hand. And a pivot adjustment/assembly screw as well as screwed together construction for easy cleaning and repair, as opposed to a pinned together knife that you can't repair without some higher level skills. And while the Crown knife's version of the 8Cr steel isn't the hardest I have used, it is plenty for a good work knife, compared to an unknown quantity, or something simply marked "surgical steel" or "440 series steel".

    I hope you come back here and let us know what you decided to get!

    Last edited: Nov 14, 2014
  9. inkynate


    Sep 4, 2010
    As mentioned earlier, I have a few MTech fixed blades, I can't comment on the folders. What midnight flyer said may be 100% spot on, but I like to keep an open mind. As far as the steel and heat treat, I don't expect that it would be significantly worse than other China made knives in this price range, but no one really knows. As prices get lower and lower there's more I'm willing to accept in terms of fit and finish issues if the design is something that appeals to me or I think it is something I could work with in terms of mods, etc...

    Here is a brief write-up I did on a large bowie they sell:


    I got it just for fun, the glaring issues are that the handles came loose and the sheath is pretty basic and doesn't look like it will hold up to much. (Haven't actually had anything fail on it yet though.) If I was to update that thread right now I would also note that while the MTech looks pretty cool, I've found that I prefer my 14" Tramontina machete for most of the work I would use a large knife for... it's also in the $15 range.

    The other one I have that looks promising is the MTech Xtreme mt-8108. Small fixed blade with a cool tactical grind and nice handle scales. Haven't used it for anything significant yet. Again, the sheath is pretty basic, but at $20 it's cool that it even comes with one. I got this one to practice regrinding and to see how it holds up to work I would do with something like my ESEE-4.

    The other two I have, an mt-20-30 and mt-20-35 literally seem to be sized for children, but that's okay b/c I gave them to my kids.
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2014
  10. Daddyo16


    Jan 12, 2012
    Another vote for the Utilitac II. Awesome knife for the money.
  11. skyhorse

    skyhorse Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 30, 2010
    That would be my guess as well.Yes it's a little more than $15 but than merely requires raking some leaves or some other small job on a weekend. A lot of good suggestions here as well.
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2014
  12. Lee48


    Apr 29, 2005
    SanRenMu & Enlan. Look them up. They're the least amount of money you can spend and still get a well made, good performing knife.
  13. fetzer85


    Oct 17, 2012
    Although we both agree that the RAT 1 and Utilitac 2 are both incredible values I must respectfully disagree with this statement. Currently on 'the large South American river site' you can buy the Utilitac 2 for $20 and the RAT 1 for $25. Both are great deals. Another option the Utilitac offers that the RAT does not is the tanto blade. I'm personally not a tanto guy however I know some like them.

    OP - I suggest you try a Kershaw Crown, they're $10 on the bay. Next step, a Kershaw Half Ton or 3/4 Ton, both in the $12-$14 range on the bay. After that I'd go with the Kabar Dozier Hunter for $20 and/or the Utilitac 2 also $20. Lastly the RAT 1 for $25. They're all superb options for the price, in my opinion.
  14. Inazone


    Aug 27, 2012
    I own a few MTech knives, and have thrown a couple away. I owned one of their "tactical folders" with a chain link pattern on the blade, and was thrilled with it . . . for a while. However, the blade wasn't centered, and if I adjusted it so that it was centered, the liner lock wouldn't engage properly, thus presenting a safety issue. I messed with it until the pivot screws stripped, at which point I threw it out. I also had one of their fixed blade knives that I used for gardening. It actually stood up to a lot of abuse, hitting a lot of rocks, roots and the occasional paving stone. It spent most of its brief life outside in the rain and snow, but didn't really rust much. However, the sheath fell apart and I decided to toss the knife with it.

    Meanwhile, I still own one MTech folder, supposedly (but probably not) 440C, that I like quite a bit, and a couple of their fixed blades. One is of somewhat suspect fit and finish but is comfortable and has surprisingly nice sheath, and the other is a survival knife/machete that my wife bought me; it is actually by all estimation a decent knife. However, I'm betting that she paid way too much for it. Either way, all three will get used one way or another. In that sense, they weren't wastes of money, and many people would probably consider any one of them a worthwhile purchase.
  15. mooshisho


    Mar 13, 2012
    I forgot all about the Kershaw Crown! :) They're nice.

    Take a look at Rough Rider's offerings if you're open to traditional styled knives.

    Consider the Kershaw holiday pack too. They run $20... if I recall correctly, this year's has got a knife, a small one-piece pocket tool, and one or two other things...
  16. scotchleaf


    Oct 23, 2006
    Enlan EL-01 is a beast of a flipper-knife. Goes for about 18.50. [​IMG] Comes in a variety of scales:


  17. The_Black_Knight


    Feb 24, 2014
    I'll agree with going for a rough rider, while I don't own any, I've heard pretty much only good things about them.
    I'd also look around for a case sodbuster or peanut, they can be found pretty cheap, and are extremely reliable blades.
    I would also suggest a Cold steel kudu or eland, a good steel for the price, extremely solid lock, half the price of most tac force folders, and I would definitely carry my kudu day today.
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2014
  18. Bob W

    Bob W

    Dec 31, 2000
    For a hunting knife, I'm surprised at the number of Mora knives that are still less than $15.
    The Pendleton Lite Hunter by Cold Steel gets excellent reviews, and it's currently $15.38 at your preferred store.
  19. edh3007


    Sep 26, 2014
    I hope the OP does not take offense, but I read that post as a troll. Sorry, maybe that's just me.

    But, in the spirit of staying on topic, for a cool looking knife at or under the OP budget I would seriously suggest :

    A balisong trainer

    Why not? They certainly look cool, you can learn a neat skill without hurting yourself (or others), and you might discover you really like these unusual knives. Might be a great introduction to a great hobby, no matter what type of knife the future might bring.

    Cheers, Ed
  20. LukeGeauxBoom


    Nov 17, 2014
    I have a few "beater" knives that I've picked up. My favorite is the Cold Steel Kudu. Unique ring lock that is SOLID...feels like a fixed blade. Another one is the Schrade Imperial Sodbuster. I love both these cheap knives and you can get them for under 10 bucks. The Cold Steel Finn Bear is another cheap option.

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