Gerber Airframe

Feb 13, 2001
Hi Everyone:

I just got the knife collecting bug a couple of months ago and although I have been reading quite a bit I have very little experience and a tiny collection (which I am of course hoping to expand). So, if I say something really stupid please bare with me.

I just received a Gerber Airframe in the mail last night and was quite pleased with it. It seemed to be extremely sharp (as it should for that sort of money) and the action was smooth. However, I was surprised to see that when the blade was closed it rested on the plastic back spacer.

Someone mentioned that they had the same experience with the Gerber Spectre. This surprises me, would this not cause the blade to dull faster? My super inexpensive CRKT Commander holds the blade off the back spacer. It would seem that a very slight change in the blade configuration or moving the stop post slightly would have prevented this from happening. It also occurs to me that a quick fix would be to put a sleeve over the stop post (either metal or plastic/rubber) to keep the blade off the back spacer. Has anyone tried this? Any recomendations or advice would be very welcome.

Marwan Joury
Ok, I just answered my own question about using a sleeve on the stop post. That was silly! The same post is used to stop both in the open and closed position, so if I used a sleeve to adjust the closed position it would not lock open -- DOH! Oh well, live and learn -- at least I figured it out before I had the knife in pieces!

Marwan Joury

Welcome to the forums. I have 2 of the Airframes. The first production run is perfect. I obtained a second Airframe and the liner engages a bit far to the middle of the blade and when pressure is applied to the back of the blade when locked open the liner slips back a bit, but does not fail. There are several posts here on the Airframe. This knife has an interesting history, it was discontinued just as the first examples hit the market. I believe this was due to production problems with the titanium handles and production costs. There is rumour that they may begin to make these with aluminum handles. Neither of my blades hit the plastic insert. The insert looks to be molded with a mold line running down the middle, so maybe it just appears to be resting there? I personally like these knives, however, there has not been very much interest here on the forums. If you use the search function and search for Airframe you will be able to find some good info. ...Ed.
I have an Airframe with a "First Production Run" blade and machined ti handle (I guess this would be the second "First Production Run"). I understand that the first "First Production Run" Airframes really had cast ti handles (identified by rounded edges and Harsey's name cast into the handle). It would be interesting to know how many of these cast-handled versions were actually issued to the public. I have seen other Airframes without the "First Production Run" inscription on the blade and these had the machined ti handle (third production run?).

I don't have the problem of the blade contacting the spacer when closed as you do. I really like the knife especially for its contoured handle--the palm swell is really nice. The blade is very sharp and has a profile that is very practical. The lock engages without a loud click (which I like) and holds the blade quite securely. The knife is also relatively light for its size and carries comfortably in the pocket. While it could be carried for urban use, it is probably at its best as a light-duty (hiking, cycling, etc.) outdoors knife or as backup to a fixed blade knife for camping, hunting, etc.

Like your knife mine is the one with machined handles with "First Production Run" stamped on the blade. I have to agree with everything that you have said about the knife and like both you and Ed I really like it. I am just a little concerned about what the long term effect will be on the blade of the continuous contact with the spacer. And yes, I am sure it is touching, you can see the marks made on the plastic right opposite the last hex screw and the lanyard hole. I don't see that there is any adjustability to correct this problem and find it interesting that niehter of you (3 knives) have this problem. I have another on the way and will see if that one is any different.

BTW just to make absolutely sure I slid a thin piece of paper between the blade and the spacer and sure enough it was marked by the blade...
mjoury, hopefully the problem may work itself out. The blade would continue to cut into the plastic spacer until it gets to the point where the blade stop will do its intended job. In a battle between plastic and CPM 154 the latter will win all the time--you just might need to resharpen the blade more often until the annoying contact stops. This is only my personal theory and I know it is not a solution to your problem; however, what I'm suggesting is that it may not be as bad as you imagine.

P.S. Did you read Ed's comments about the spacer having a molded line down the middle? Perhaps it's a rest stop to steady the blade when closed. Maybe someone from Gerber could clear this up.

Edit: I just checked my Airframe and found that the "molded line" mentioned above is actually the result of a two piece spacer sandwiched together. I cut a thin strip of paper (easy job with the Airframe) and slipped it into the opening between the blade and the spacer to test if there was any hard contact. The paper pulled out without snagging--apparently, the blade does not rest against the spacer.

[This message has been edited by toothed (edited 02-16-2001).]

That is pretty much what I did -- with the thin piece of paper I mean. Looks like your knife is ok. I got my second one over the weekend and it has exactly the same problem as my first one :-(. I could not find any way to contact Gerber (phone or email) for an oppinion on this. What you said about the plastic getting cut away eventually did occur to me, and I do believe that this will happen if I let it. I put a little very thin piece of sticky felt on the back of the blade rest and that has temporarily taken care of the problem. I am not sure how long this will stay put, but it also occured to me that I could build up the rest slightly with some form of epoxy.

I wish I had a number or contact for Gerber. I just feel that given everything else that is right about this knife this is a really silly problem! I wonder if it was problems such as these that caused them to discontinue the model. Although, like I mentioned previously, I do remember an earlier post about the Spectre where the poster who reviewed the knife had exactly the same problem.
Yup, my 1st production run Gerber Spectre has the same problem. The black plastic spacer has a groove from where the blade contacts it.

In my case, I disassembled the knife and superglued a thin piece of rubber sheeting on the spacer. Your idea about the stop pin might work. Not sure if the stop pin placement is near enough to the blade in closed position to work, though. I'll try it when i get home.


"Praise not the day until evening has come;a sword until it is tried; ice until it has been crossed; beer until it has been drunk" - Viking proverb

[This message has been edited by redvenom (edited 02-21-2001).]

I eventually stuck a tiny piece of felt (the type of stuff used on the bottom of things to keep from scratching furniture) to the knife where it is supposed to contact the stop pin. This seems to work, but for how long I have no idea. Probably won't hold up to serious use.

I did contact Gerber and they suggest that I send the knife back to them and I am going to give that a try. I will post when I get it back.

If they can not fix it (or replace it) I am going to take the second approach and try to dremel out a channel for the blade. In my case the spacing is so close as to be almost ok. A couple of mm would probably do it.