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Gold Member
Dec 23, 1998
Ok guys, I pulled several of my folders from my safe and decided to test the locks on all of them after the horrendous performance of my ez-out. The following are the results of the tests( I wacked each knife 5 times against the back of the blade while holding it by the base of the handle):
All Stainless Spyderco Worker- Passed
BM CQC7 Bt2.Serr #1--Passed
BM CQC7 Bt2.Serr #2--Passed
BM Stryker #1--Passed
BM Sentinel--Passed
Gerber Covert(without locking)--passed--whew!
Spyderco Wegner full size--Passed
Spyderco Military-Passed
BM AFCK,--passed
MOD Trident--Passed
Kershaw Ti-34-Passed, even though liner didn't appear to go in as far as it should.

Next Test was to flick them open as hard as possible to see which would jam open.

The Standard Lockbacks dont have any problems with this test so I skipped them.

BM CQC7- Passed but was very hard to unlock
AFCK- Same as above
BM Elishewits-No problem trying to close
Spy. Wegner-No problems
Spy.Mil.-No problems
Gerber Covert- No problems
Kershaw-Couldn't flick open for some reason.
MOD Trident-Wouldn't flick open either.

Thats about all the stress I can take for one day. I'll test the rest on another day.

Oh and I beat the crap out of my MPF the other day trying to see if I could get the lock to fail, to see if thaddeus was right. I hit the back of the blade at least 10 times. I flicked it open about 8 times to see if it would jam open. I threw it into a block of wood(one full turn) and then pried it out in a way that would allow it to fold up. All tests passed. No, I will not repeat these tests.

Boy was this a waste of time and a bunch of rambling on.
I'm glad to hear that the Worker passed the test. My 11 year old just saved and spent all of his Christmas money to get this knife, his first, BTW and I appreciate what you did.

I bet you needed to lay down after doing all those test.

Thanks for spending the time to do your own tests and sharing the results with us. There are a lot of people out there that are very interested in field results, and not just what the manufacturers claim.

MPF comments - That is why we "overbuild" our knives. Everyone is always trying to break our titanium knives :) So far, with over 3000 knives delivered to the US Govt., they have only broken 2, both of these were broken using a 250 ton hydraulic ram press!

Two last comments,
(a) After your MPF test, I bet you could have cleaned it up and resold it at a knife show as a new knife.
(b) With the series of tests that you put the MPF through, I would like to see the results/remains of the steel knives after put through these same MPF torture tests.

Stay good,
Rick, like I stated earlier, I have already put myself through enough stress of hoping that my knives do not fail. I was getting that feeling in the pit of my stomach every time I tested one, because I was slamming them harder than I ever did the ez-out that failed. In fact my first test was on the little Spy worker, which with it's polished stainless handles bounced off the floor, off my fingers and almost into my face. After that I wore safety glasses. Now you want me to do destructive tests with these knives like I did to the MPF. Well, what I did to the MPF was unfair since no folder is meant for that kind of abuse. Your knife took it because it is overbuilt, but i'm sure many of the others couldn't take it. In fact you are right, it does not look much different than when I started with it. About the only thing you can tell is different is my poor sharpenning skills, oh and the clip has a scratch on it because it bounced off the plywood the first time I threw it.

Also, I can't justify to my wife my knife purchases, if she sees me continuously doing destructive testing. "Oh hunny, what are you doing with that $150 BM?"--"Nothing, I'm just bouncing it off the plywood board, thats all."--"Well, then I guess you don't need any more knives, do you!!"

Just an update on knife tests.

The other day I happened to leave town without a folder in my pocket(major sin), so I purchased a relatively inexpensive Meyerco large Strut-n-cut, which I proceeded to do a blade spine whack job on. After about 6 or 7 wacks the lock never failed. I tried to force by hand and no luck. However this thing is spring loaded and opens and closes extremely fast and the damm blade caught my finger twice and cut me, So becarefull...WARNING KEEP ALL FINGERS OUT OF THE WAY OF THE BLADE PATH WHEN CLOSING THIS KNIFE.

The mechanism on this knife is really strange. I may have to take this one apart.
Add two spyderco enduras to the test. They passed after seven tries of wacking the back of the blades. I also tried to force to fail by forcing it in wood with no luck. Test passed.

I also received my Rekat pocket hobit back with minor changes I asked for and did the lock test. No surprise that this lock did not fail. But the back of the blade got stuck in my carpet because of those teeth on there. The wife wasn't to happy about that.
Tested another endura and a boye dendritic cobalt folder today and both passed with no problems.
Hey guys, I applaud your testing efforts. Remember there's one more important thing to test. If you're going to be using this knife hard or in self-defense, you might at some point find yourself holding the knife very tightly, perhaps without even realizing it.
When white-knuckling the knife this way, lockbacks can sometimes accidently pop due to palm pressure, and liner locks can disengage due to the flesh of your fingers sinking down and moving it over. You might want to try some white-knuckling tests, moving your hand around in several positions (make sure they're plausible holds). On a liner lock, if the lockup loosens up *at all* when white-knuckling, it will almost certainly disengage on a hard thrust. You can hold the knife hard with one hand, then listen or feel for the lock moving over, and also try the palm-pressure test that you did above while white-knuckling.


I think I would get one of those protective gloves designed for use when filleting fish, if I were trying these tests, in addition to your saftey glasses...assuming the gloves are some good.
Thanks for trying the Boye Dendritic Cobalt, since I have one on order. Anyone have any ideas regarding the strength of the knife and blade. I got the impression that cuts great, but some seem to find at least the edge sensitive to impact. I also seem to get a conflicting picture of cobalt being tough and flexible versus other arguments that it is brittle.
I wonder about the lock on my Paul knife [Gerber]. I do not think I want to risk it, but I do note I used the early model when helping to refinish a floor, using the blade backwards, dragging debris out of spaces between the boards. I imagine I was relatively gentle, since I treasured ( and still do) the knife.
Donald; I cannot comment on the Boye dendritic cobalt, as I have never seen one, or read of anyone testing it for impact resistance / prying ability.

Kit Carson, however, has been making U2 dive knives of Stellite (r) for many years; these knives have a blunt tip which is made for prying, and a secondary edge on top, made for cutting the metal strapping used on crates. This is done by slipping the knife under the strapping, and rotating it 90 degrees, and pulling the haft up.

Kit says he has never had a dive knife break. This seems to satisfy my concerns about Stellite (r) and its' toughness. Walt
I would bet that boye's dendritic cobal is pretty tough also, if that little folder's blade is any indication. It is pretty stiff for a thin blade. Also, Boye's dendritic cobalt fixed blade is a fairly reasonably priced knife which I will probably be getting in the next couple of months just for comparison's sake. I believe it will do well.

A little word also about lock test made by Fred Perrin (knocking thaback of blade until it closed or not...)

Almost all liners lock have failed but
the Spyderco Military ...
It was a real surprised for us.
Other folders with really strong locks (IOHO)
are the Cold Steel voyagers.
The don't want to close...
Our old BMs has failed. Sad.

Not surprising most liner locks have failed. It is surprising the BMs did badly, though! They're usually among the very best.

Say what you want about the Voyagers, but their locks do seem to be strong. Keep in mind, though, that all but the cheapest lockbacks usually pass the whack-the-spine test pretty easily. The Gerber EZ Outs are the only big-name lockbacks that seem to fail regularly.

Man, I'll bet you did need to lay down after doing that! Thanks, it's "knice" to know all this without having to do it myself. I figure that just carrying a Knife around for awhile will tell me all I need to know. I don't just keep them for defense, I use them all the time. Keeps me busy sharpening every night, but my wife has learned to ignore that little shhhk,shhhhk,shhhh, sound while watching the tube.

I cut it, and I cut it, and it's STILL too short!


Try the Military.
I have been using it yesterday and today A LOT on wood and cardboard and it simply refuses to get dull.
And no way today we have tried to jam the lock.
No way !
I want to do like you, every evening to resharp my knife in front of the fire place... ;-)


"Mobilis in Mobile"
Why is it that you had so many fail and I did not. Am I doing something wrong? I wacked the back of the blades several times with no effect, and I went back after your post and did them all over again with the exact same results.
Cobalt --

Weird, huh? It could be that you just don't quite have the touch to fail 'em. Or you could very well have gotten really lucky with your locks! I went to lunch with some knife knut friends last week, and they had something like 4-5 liner locks between them. I couldn't make a single one fail! My normal failure rate is 25%-50%, and as Steve can testify
, sometimes I can go through an entire collection and fail nearly every one.

And sometimes, doing the test really sets the lock. There were a couple of Steve's knives that I failed easily, but after that first failure I was never able to fail again. I don't really have evidence either way on whether those knives are *permanently* fixed, but for the moment I can't fail 'em. What worries me more is that I've had a knife pass all tests for years, then suddenly start failing.

It is amazing that there can be that much deviation between locks on the same style of knife, but I usually see the locks not end up at the same point on the same style of knife, so there is definitelly a difference.
Cobalt - perhaps the difference lies in your selection. I believe that not all locks are created equal.

In my opinion, not all manufacturers are the same in this area. R & D costs are high, testing is expensive and time consuming. Sometimes the difference is cost, but sometimes the diffeence is knowledge, or experience, or "tricks". That's what makes "Knife Races".

Certainly, if one "brand" is having a difficult time with this problem, this forum will help them learn.