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Flippers that don't use frame or liner locks?

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by Planterz, Dec 13, 2017.

  1. Planterz

    Planterz Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 26, 2004
    My BM 940D2CF is getting a bit long in the tooth, and I've been thinking of getting something new. I like the idea of a flipper, especially one that runs on bearings, but there's one problem with them:

    I hate frame and liner locks.

    It's been years since I've even handled one, even longer since I owned one. My issue is that you have to put your thumb or finger in the path of the blade when closing it. I got bit so many times because of the awkward motions required. And none of them that I owned, except perhaps the Microtech SOCOM D/A, had a blade that swung as freely as a flipper should.

    For the last few years I've mainly focused on traditionals without paying attention to modern folders. There's so many new knives and even new companies that I'm ignorant of because I haven't been in the market for several years.

    So here's what I'm looking for:

    Thin/narrow/light. I don't want an overbuilt brick. My all-time favorite EDC is the afore mentioned 940D2CF, so think along those lines.

    Thin, acute cutting profile, with a tip-forward edge. I want something that slices, not a folding prybar. I don't like a lot of belly, especially towards the tip. Again, like the 940 blade. Or Kershaw Leek, Microtech LCC, Zulu/tribal spear, etc. But not a true wharncliffe or sheepsfoot.

    Good steel. Duh. I'm not a steel snob, but I don't want junk. VG-10 or better.

    Unassisted flipper with a fast action, preferably bearings.

    Lock other than liner or framelock. One of the reasons I like my 940 so much is that with the unassisted AXIS lock you can easily flick it open and closed with one hand and without putting any part of your hand in the path of the blade.

    No customs. I'm not looking for something cheap, but I don't want to go crazy. A good knife for a good price. No Cold Steel either. @#$% Cold Steel.

    So please, I'm looking for ideas. Or should I just get another 940? I do like the 940-1 or the Knifeworks exclusive blue/black G10 with CPM 20CV.

    Dadpool likes this.
  2. maximus83


    Nov 7, 2011
    Mo2, 115Italian and matt009au like this.
  3. SW-EDC

    SW-EDC Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Dec 4, 2015
    Cold Steel..uh, yeah..anyway.
    All I have now for EDC are flippers. Once you use them, thumb studs are a thing of the past.
    Mine are all frame and liner locks. Can't really help you but hope you find another to your liking ;)
  4. WValtakis

    WValtakis Gold Member Gold Member

    May 29, 2004
    SOG makes a few pass through Lockback style flippers if I remember right.

  5. Barman1

    Barman1 Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 21, 2013
    Button lock.
    Maybe a Hogue, Freeman, or Spartan Pallas?
    There are a few others but these just popped into my head.
    Armadew and matt009au like this.
  6. dkb45

    dkb45 Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 16, 2012
    Hogue X5 or X1 Microflip. Flips smooth like on bearings, but it actually doesn't even use washers. Crazy innovative design. Button lock. ~$130 for the X1 and ~$200 for the X5.
  7. Lapedog

    Lapedog Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 7, 2016
    If you can swing the loot the GG Hawk Dauntless is supposed to be on a whole other level.

    Then for button locks there is the Hogue Ex05 or the Freeman flipper.

    Just be aware not all locks work good with flippers. For example I have the Benchmade 300 Ball flipper with axis lock. The axis lock makes for a very mushy flipping action.
  8. Planterz

    Planterz Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 26, 2004
    Ooh, that could be the one. I've always been a fan of Spydercos, I love the blade shape, I like the wire clip (if I'm not carrying my 940, it's my CF/ZDP Caly3), etc. I was actually aware of the Sliverax, but I figured it was a linerlock like so many others. I'm OK with the Compression lock. I'll have to watch some youtube reviews. Thanks.

    The other knives mentioned are all beefier than I care for, although I do dig the button lock.

    I should also mention that I'm aware of the Benchmade 300, but it has zero appeal to me except for being an AXIS flipper. I wish Benchmade would make some others.
    Armadew likes this.
  9. shinyedges

    shinyedges Unfaltering Love & Undeviating Will Platinum Member

    Jun 5, 2012
    While larger than the 940, I've heard good things about the freeman 451 flipper. If it isn't slicey enough a regrind from an expert on the forums can make it more to your liking.

    I've found I most enjoy the knives I modded to be exactly what I want.
  10. Lapedog

    Lapedog Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 7, 2016
    I believe the SilverAxe suffers the same problem as the 300 Ball axis flipper. Namely that the compression lock, like the axis, doesn't seem to produce a great flipping action. ​
  11. WValtakis

    WValtakis Gold Member Gold Member

    May 29, 2004
    My Sliverax flips just fine, my only complaint is that sometimes the compression lock will give you a little pinch if you push button it...light switching has no issues. Not super crisp like a ZT, but certainly no Hinderer.

    Also, the SOGs I was thinking of are the Twitches...kind of a neat design. Not VG-10, but AUS8 is decent in my opinion.

    Last edited: Dec 13, 2017
  12. BilboBaggins

    BilboBaggins Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 14, 2016
  13. Wanimator


    Mar 7, 2014
    It has displayed excellent flipping action. The compression lock gives the same tension and detent as a liner or frame lock.
    Lapedog likes this.
  14. Hackenslash

    Hackenslash Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Jul 25, 2014
    A manual, production Protech Cambria has been on my radar for a while. It might work for you. Manual flipper with a plunge lock. 3.5" blade but the handle is less than a half inch thick. Some of the custom ones get a little pricey but this one is reasonable...
  15. 731Chopper

    731Chopper Gold Member Gold Member

    May 25, 2017
    The sliverax doesnt flip as well as a 0450 as an example but it isn't bad. I'd recommend it for what you are asking for.
    Lapedog likes this.
  16. Chefget

    Chefget Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 2, 1998
    Hackenslash was correct, this is the knife you are looking for. The button lock is really the next level...the action is second to none!

    This one has stainless steel handles, weighs in at 5.45 ounces

  17. PirateSeulb


    Jun 6, 2017
    So a few options with a range of prices just a quick search I could find these options not sure how well each one works but a starting off point for some of your own research.

    Kershaw Induction
    Klecker Cordovan and Slice
    CRKT Nirk Tighe
    Hogue X5 and X1
    Protech Cambria
    Buck 830 Marksman
    Spyderco Sliverax

    I am sure there are more options but those are what I know and could find quickly
  18. ATJ999

    ATJ999 Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 12, 2013
    Button lock/plunge lock flippers are extremely smooth and great for one hand use. I have a Rod Olson custom and it is a great EDC
    Cutlover likes this.
  19. ArchVV

    ArchVV Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 8, 2015
    I'll put another vote in for the Protech Cambria. This action is impeccable and it is surprising how much blade length the design yields despite its apparent diminutive size.

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