Hard Use Folder?

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by Lenny, Jan 7, 2019.

  1. Ajack60

    Ajack60 Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Apr 21, 2013
    I've always been in the mindset that hard use and folder doesn't go together. From my experience, when you force something to work, sooner or later something's gonna give. Reading all the recommended knives mentioned, which are good reliable folders, they still won't hold up to a fixed blade. Just saying.
    dc50, User27, marchone and 1 other person like this.
  2. Therom


    Nov 13, 2013
    Depending on what you mean by hard use.
    I think cold steel has some very robust models

    However if you do not intend to use your knife to climb on trees or pry through metal I think any well made knife of much more “hard use” as one may expect

    A solid stop pin, a good metal frame on at list one side and a descent locking is all what you actually need

    I have the feeling that all the hard user thing is more often about marketing that using a knife for its purpose ;)

    I don’t want to point at anybody’s opinions here but maybe my own.
    I like my knives to be users and to be beaten if I need or want to.
    During this summer I had to work in a new house and I decided to use all the construction tasks I will have to do to push an old PM2 to destruction.
    And what I had to do was just plain stupid and has nothing to do with using a knife for actually cut things.

    This experience has changed my mind about folding knives in general.

    After this test I have bought a new spyderco, a fixed blade, an axe and a prybar ;)
    It make more sense to have the right tool for the right task :)
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2019
    marchone likes this.
  3. AF

    AF Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 14, 2000
    Yeah I think a lot of folder hard use is essentially misuse. The same could be said for fixed blades too though. The hard usage is often the result of not using the right tool - most often by choice. Sometimes because it's the only tool available.
    Ajack60 and Therom like this.
  4. jackknife

    jackknife Gold Member Gold Member Basic Member

    Oct 2, 2004
    That's a very good mindset, Ajack. I haven't yet seen a folder that tis near as rugged as e ben a mediocre fixed blade. There's just no blade lock or pivot that can beat one solid piece of steel from point to butt. This whole thing about the over built folder has been a con on the modern young knife buyer with more disposable income than wisdom. Too many young guys with absent or non caring fathers and too little real world experience get lured into this mindset. Hard use? Just take a look at what our fathers or grandfathers used when they went off to fight a world war. when push came to shove, a good fixed blade was issued. The Camillus or Kaybar made MK2's and MK1's saw and served a lot of soldiers and Marines in places like Guadalcanal and Saipan. Today, the Marines still have the Kaybar. Sure, there was lots of folders like the issue MIL-K or "demo" knife and TL-29's, but they had fixed blades when needed. In Vietnam the PX sold Buck 119's were very very popular, as were the still made Camillus MK2.
    Ajack60 likes this.
  5. PirateSeulb


    Jun 6, 2017
    I always question what people mean when they say "hard use" often times it isn't what one thinks are most our minds dream up abuse. Some knives certainly hold up to abuse better and if you wanted an emergency tool I can understand wanting it to stand up to abuse. I would think some type of multi-tool would be more ideal for an emergency tool but if you think a cutting tool more suited for the types of emergency you might encounter then I can understand a folding knife. I think sometimes what people mean is they want a rugged knife with strong build quality and dependable locking mechanism.
    whp, JD Bear, NG VI and 1 other person like this.
  6. Makael

    Makael KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Platinum Member

    Oct 17, 2015
    Im going to use the knives to cut thru a 3/4 by 5 fence board. I wont do any prying on either knife. They weren't designed to do either.

    So your 2 Dot 110 is roughly 40+ years old and has developed blade play. I would consider that a win. especially if Buck offered to replace the blade and lock bar after all these years. At no charge? Im on the Buck forums alot and live 5 miles from the factory. Ive used a 110 all the time. None of the knives Ive used developed blade play from being used. If their is blade play it came out of the box that way. Once in awhile I will come across a knife second hand. 40 to 50 years old. Ill take it to Buck for a spa treatment and when I get it back the knife is as tight and sharp as a new one. All at no charge. Buck Spa treatment is a rare service these days. They consistently turn old knives into new knives.
    I know you like Buck knives but there is a consistent negative tone more often than not. I don't quite understand that.
    craytab likes this.
  7. Makael

    Makael KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Platinum Member

    Oct 17, 2015
    I agree, strong build quality and dependable locking.
  8. pinnah


    Jul 28, 2011
    This is a good point. With hard twisting, you can literally grind up the wood handle inside of the inner collar/pivot pin assembly. I admit to doing some amount of twisting and prying when dislodging a knife from a deep wood cut. But I also admit to not having the grip strength to be able to twist an Opinel to destruction in the way you describe.

    We should add though that all folding knives ride on a "single pin" as you describe it and folding knives place the butt end (the tang) of a long lever (the blade) in the center of the assembly. I can't think of a single folding knife that is entirely immune from seeing damage from hard prying or twisting here. Old style peened pin slip joints and lock backs will develop horizontal play as the blade levers the bolsters apart. Modern slab style knives using either pinned or screwed construction can see deformation of the pivot holes in the slabs/liners or deformation of the pivot itself. When Buck repaired my 112 that developed slop, they had to replace both the pivot pin and the lock bar pivot pin, both of which had deformed. With this noted, the Opinel 9 and 10 has stood up to more prying and twisting than any of my traditional knives, including my Buck 110 lock backs.

    Indeed. As I noted, I don't think Opinel's get into the "hard use" (which I take as hard cutting) discussion until you get to the #9 and #10 size range.

    You and he might be able to do this kind of cutting with a Victorinox Recruit but I could not. IME, ergonomics is another factor to consider in a hard use, or better, hard cutting knife. I have XL+ sized hands. I barely get a good 4 finger hold on an Opinel 9. I get a much better grip with either a traditional Buck 110 or an Opinel 10. A few weeks ago, I cut put on brush cleaning duty at a work day at the church. I was told we were only doing leaf clean up so I didn't have proper cutting tools and so I used the large Case Sodbuster I happened to be carrying. I was cutting back brush much like that Irish guy was going but my hand gave out after 2 hours because the Sodbuster is just enough smaller in terms of girth that I can't really get a good purchase on it when making hard cuts. I've long ago noticed the same thing in making wood shavings and feather sticks the Sodbuster. On the other hand, thanks to the bigger handles on the 110 and larger Opinels I can use those knives for a much longer time. One reason I gave up on all small pocket knives is exactly this.... the ergos just don't work for me and my big hands for heavy cutting. I also generally dislike modern slab knives for a similar reason. They just create too much of a pressure point on my palm under hard cutting due to their thin profile. YMMV territory.

    As for folding vs fixed... Nobody I know prefers a folder in use all things being equal. But I don't and for all practical matters can't carry a fixed blade with me for EDC. A Buck 110 or large Opinel fits easily and discretely in my RRP. Despite its anemic handle, I was able to do that job at the church because I had the Sodbuster with me. (Had we taken my Rav instead of my wife's van, I would been able to grab any of the several fixed blades I have stashed in my car.)
    Bad Ninja likes this.
  9. pinnah


    Jul 28, 2011
    Let me help you understand....

    For many years I worked in product management (in a different industry). Feedback from customers is critical. As the saying goes, "if we don't take care of our customers, who will?"

    In that job, I learned that neither haters nor fan-boys were my friends. Haters just hate. Fan-boys just expressed their admiration.

    The customers that helped us the most were those who could give praise where praise was due and constructive criticism when things don't work. Related to this topic, I've had lock backs loosen up with use, including Bucks. I see my saying this in public (and direct to Buck when appropriate) is the best way to support and love them.
    AF and NG VI like this.
  10. jackknife

    jackknife Gold Member Gold Member Basic Member

    Oct 2, 2004
    Of course you can. You've just never really experimented with the whole bending and creating a split while under strain. That's all this guy was doing. Watch the video closely. He's just using his size and weight to bend the green limb until it's under a lot of stress, then cutting into the top/outside edge of the limb to make a fault and causing into split/break down its grain. No big feat of cutting there at all. He's in effect just breaking the stuff off. And he's doing it to green limbs. Try that with some dead wood or dried wood and it will never work.

    I'm all of 5' 9" and 175 pounds. I wear medium gloves and they are a little long in the fingers. I'm actually very comfortable with the small grip on a J frame S&W or Ruger LCP, or Beretta 950. I can even handle a North American Arms mini reviver with ease. That makes you a good size bigger than me. If I can break/cut off good size tree limbs with a Victorinox recruit, you can do it with ease. It's just technique, thats all. The big Irish guy is making an easy task look like it's more amazing than it really is. Video slight of hand.
    craytab and NG VI like this.
  11. pinnah


    Jul 28, 2011
    I'm very, very, very familiar with this technique and use it regularly both working on properties and in the woods.

    I can't do this sort of cutting with a small pocket knife because of my large hands. I simply can't get a good strong grip on small knives. An Opinel 9 or Buck 112 is about as small as I can go for making cuts of this sort. I can't even use a Large Sodbuster comfortably for this kind of cutting.

    I probably couldn't fit into your shoes either. ;^)
    NG VI likes this.
  12. knoefz


    Mar 20, 2009
    Are you serious? Come on... that's not hard use what he does.... that's complete abuse what he did imho. Batonning a folder with a hammer.... heavy prying in all directions with the knife stuck deep into wood. You can break fixed blades that way.
    NG VI likes this.
  13. Makael

    Makael KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Platinum Member

    Oct 17, 2015
  14. DocJD


    Jan 29, 2016
    If it has to be a folder and under $150 for hard use , Cold Steel with Tri-ad lock . Nothing else even comes close ! :cool::thumbsup::thumbsup:
  15. Makael

    Makael KnifeMaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Knifemaker / Craftsman / Service Provider Platinum Member

    Oct 17, 2015
    Lots of good knives in the 150.00 mark.
  16. vanadium


    Apr 5, 2003
    The deformation of the Lionsteel's stop pin mounting occurred during reasonable hand-chopping of a 2x4 without a baton. I think it doesn't make sense to mount a stop pin in aluminum on this type of knife, at least without without a steel washer to spread the force of chopping.
  17. stabman

    stabman Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 17, 2007
    Yeah, that ain't it.
    Like I said before, when my grandfather saw my Benchmade Resistor, he checked it out and said "That will work."
    And you know what? He was right. :)

    Now it ain't as overbuilt as some of my other knives, but it's more stout than the folding knives he had in his youth, and he didn't see that as a bad thing, because it still worked as a knife.

    I have also encountered fixed blade knives that most certainly were flimsier than some of my folders...owned some of those flimsy fixed blades myself in years gone by.

    Some people get caught up by silly marketing about how "badass" some knife (or other product) will make them, but it's also easy to get caught up in thinking that everyone now is stupid, or uninformed, or "playing at Rambo", living out some Walter Mitty fantasy, etc. Sometimes people just like something different than you do, and it really isn't any deeper than that. :cool:
  18. stabman

    stabman Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 17, 2007
    I also own a Case Peanut and Rough Rider Tiny Toothpick (with pink scales and peace sign on it :D ), so I have all bases covered.

    Including the Smatchet angle (everyone needs a Smatchet...)
  19. knoefz


    Mar 20, 2009
    Don't want to make a back and forward discussion out of this, I just have a different idea of hard use with a folding knife and whats abuse of a folding knife. I guess that's different for everyone.
    vanadium likes this.
  20. Shadowedhand


    Dec 4, 2019
    Have you had any issues with the lock during normal use or otherwise? Otherwise being "spine tests" Just ordered one and I'm hoping I get the same performance!

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