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Gerber Guardian review request

Jul 29, 2000
I'm thinking about buying the Gerber Guardian backup boot knife. What is your opinion of the knife?
It's not expensive at least...
Depends on what you intend to use it for. It is not a utility or full-fledged defensive knife. The 'backup' in the name best describes it. A decent concealment piece and 'last resort' blade but that's about it.
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">It's not expensive at least... </font>

Backup knives are just that. If all else has already failed, what do you want to be holding in your hand?

The older Gerbers are OK, but I prefer my Tom Mayo boot knife...


He who has smelt the smoke is never free again...
I've had one for a couple of years, but I've never actually worn it. Here's a few observations, though, FWTW.

Although it's not a great steel, it will take a scary sharp edge. Given it's intended use as a backup defense knife, I think it's a good steel.

The sheath is a little tricky. Being able to adjust the tension is nice, but it's a balancing act. Get it too tight and you'd probably pull the knife and the sheath out - the clip really doesn't provide much in regards to keeping the sheath inside the boot on a hard pull. Too loose, bye bye knife.

The sheath is reversible, so you can carry either tip up or down.

Another thing to consider. Since the sheath is primarily made of something similar to Zytel, an inside-the-boot carry is going to be very uncomfortable. Best to carry it outside if comfort is an issue - or wear extremely heavy socks with some duct tape wrapped around them!

It's too short to be a true defense knife, but I'd definitely take it over most pocketknives, or no knife at all.

The handle is very small. I can easily see a hand sliding up onto the blade if the tip were to hit something hard. It does have finger grooves, but they only help if you have the blade in a vertical position. Hold it so that the blade is horizontal, and you have very little to keep the knife from sliding in your hand.

My overall opinion - far better defense knives are available for the money. But, the Guardian is one heck of a good apple knife.

Knowledge without understanding is knowledge wasted.
Understanding without knowledge is a rare gift - but not an impossibility.
For the impossible is always possible through faith. - Bathroom graffiti, gas station, Grey, TN, Dec, 1988

AKTI Member #A000831

[This message has been edited by Codeman (edited 01-03-2001).]