How small can you go ? ( a fun experiment)

Discussion in 'Traditional Folders and Fixed Blades' started by Hickory n steel, May 2, 2020.

  1. Hickory n steel

    Hickory n steel Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 11, 2016
    What is the smallest pocket knife you could currently carry in confidence to tackle the cutting tasks life presents you on a daily basis?

    If you have a small peanut class knife or smaller but have yet to carry it as more than a secondary or " backup " I'm issuing you this challenge.

    Carry your little knife for two weeks with the honest intention to reach for it first when a cutting task arises.
    You may carry something larger as a backup in case the little guy just isn't enough for a particular task, but the idea is to really test the little guy and see if it's enough for you or not.

    I'm not expecting anyone to give up their larger knives or anything, just to maybe find a new appreciation for the little fellas.

    I just got this little Buck 305 lancer today and it's definitely a little knife coming in a bit smaller than a peanut.

    For two weeks this will be my pocket knife, I've got another knife coming that will tag along once it arrives but the little 305 will be the first I reach for and I will only grab the other if the little Buck lancer proves inadequate.
    Bigbobg, Old Hunter, CHNeal and 11 others like this.
  2. ISKRA


    Sep 19, 2016
    This 2.5 inch Iskra stainless. It handled what I needed it to handle, even cut apples in half with it. Small apples ... :oops::D

  3. JohnDF

    JohnDF Gold Member Gold Member

    May 14, 2018
    I took the peanut Challenge a while back, carrying nothing but the peanut.
    What I found is that while I could get by with it for about 95% of my cutting tasks, I just didn't enjoy it. Why carry a knife that will only do 95% of waht I want it to and not speak to my inner Knife Knut's wants and needs? The smallest knife i'll carry any more is a GEC #15. The 3-1/2" knives seem to be the sweet spot for size and capability with no compromises. I have a ton of knives, I don't need to compromise. But on those days I feel like carrying something much larger, like a Case Large Trapper, I have something Peanut sized riding with me for those awkward public situations where a larger knife might put somebody off.

  4. afishhunter

    afishhunter Basic Member Basic Member

    Oct 21, 2014
    Smallest I'm comfortable with is a 3 1/8 to 3 1/2 inch closed two blade Barlow. For some reason, I don't care for other patterns in that size range.
    The smallest I normally carry is a 3 5/8 inch closed (give er take a hair) 4 blade Scout/Camp/Demo knife. (actually, one of those has a permanent place in my pocket, no matter what else I may be carrying.)
    As for having a "back up" ... I've never carried just one; even when I was a knee high to a locust rug rat.

    I've tried some 3 inch and under knives. They ain't for me, which just means there be more available for them that like that size. :)
  5. rishma


    Jun 22, 2008
    I like small knives everyday. Got by with a peanut for over a year everyday, and then a GEC 14...which is my sweet spot.

    anyone who takes this challenge will be pleasantly rewarded.
    Old Hunter, CHNeal, jackknife and 4 others like this.
  6. Prester John

    Prester John Gold Member Gold Member

    May 20, 2018
    Wow! Glad I live in Texas. No one bats an eye when I pull out my trapper. In fact, it's pretty popular around here. :D
  7. JohnDF

    JohnDF Gold Member Gold Member

    May 14, 2018
    Much different here in Kalifornia.
    But I respect that my knife may scare somebody and I make a decision to shield them from it.
    Some day, 9 years from now when I retire, I will move to a more conservative part of the country (counting the days).
  8. Modoc ED

    Modoc ED Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 28, 2010
    John @JohnDF just lives in the wrong part of "Kalifornia" - as he likes to call it. About the only time you'll get called for a knife around where I live is if you're brandishing and that niche is reserved mainly for the bad guys.
  9. Bartleby


    Oct 28, 2005
    I have used and carried a Schrade Bear Cub, 2.5" closed. I have been amazed at how well it has held up over the years. Use it all the time when I don't have a regular sized knife or I need to be discreet. I carry it on my keyring with keys (I think the keys help take the place of a handle). It is not for large hands!
    Bloefield and waynorth like this.
  10. kamagong


    Jan 13, 2001
    Not fun for me at all. While I can make do with a smaller knife (many people go without any knife at all), that's all it is. Making do. I don't enjoy the smaller knives. Too fiddly for my tastes. Given that the first pocket knife I regularly carried was a Spyderco Endura, I don't find knives in the 3 3/4" size difficult to carry at all. They're ideal, inhabiting the sweet spot for both ease of carry and comfort of use.
  11. TheChunk91

    TheChunk91 Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 15, 2013
    The 2 3/4” stockman has been getting it done for many years.

  12. Hickory n steel

    Hickory n steel Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 11, 2016
    I've never had an issue with my 110 here in my rural part of norcal, but using a knife that size around people who could freak out is something I try to avoid.
  13. Hickory n steel

    Hickory n steel Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 11, 2016
    That's a real beauty and I would not mind owning one, but in the end with a stockman I always find myself only ever using the main and sheeps foot.
    Part of what drew me to the 305 lancer is that it's got the two blades I would actually use were it a stockman.
    Well except the sheeps foot is technically a coping blade, not that theres much difference.
    Last edited: May 2, 2020
    jackknife, JohnDF and waynorth like this.
  14. Headwinds

    Headwinds Basic Member Basic Member

    Jan 15, 2016
    I started this experiment a long time ago. I’ve carried smalls (2 5/8” - 2 7/8”) almost exclusively for over 30 years, since I discovered the 108OT and 12OT - more recently the Case small stockman and Peanut. (Occasionally a mini copperhead at 3 1/8”.) For day-to-day use I’ve never felt under-knifed.
    I do occasionally carry a larger knife like a Vic Spartan or Wenger SI, but just for specific jobs.
    Old Hunter, Duper, glennbad and 9 others like this.
  15. Getting older

    Getting older

    Jan 3, 2016
    Ring size 15 gloves 2x,3x,I cannot do anything smaller than my victorious executive which by the way a great edcMy victory electrician is ideal length,next is my case 220 jack,pocket clip benchmark mini grip,
  16. Hickory n steel

    Hickory n steel Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 11, 2016
    Now if the blade on the current Case peanut was like that one there I'd probably really love them.
    I know it's silly, but the placement of the nail nick makes the blade look like it has a sharp peak and I can't get past it.
    Cutfinger and JohnDF like this.
  17. cbach8tw

    cbach8tw Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 9, 2006
    I think as small as I would go is the Case Sodbuster Jr, or my SA Alox Pioneer. The Pioneer because it has some neat features that are useful.
    Old Hunter and CHNeal like this.
  18. Jim Bob

    Jim Bob

    Apr 16, 2019
    I bought a Case Yeller peanut in CV a few weeks ago and so far it has done everything I needed it to. The nice thin CV is just an unbelievable slicer. The short length of the blade does require some creativity to cut up a large apple but it cuts through it like butter. It's the sharpest out of the box knife I've ever bought, easily opening mail packages and clamshell packaging and anything else I have needed.

    I did switch over to a medium Sodbuster for yard work today but the peanut would have made it through the day just fine.
    Old Hunter, CHNeal and Headwinds like this.
  19. Hickory n steel

    Hickory n steel Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 11, 2016
    I have found with small blades like this simply slicing off bite at a time instead of actually cutting the apple up into pieces works out very well.
    CHNeal and Jim Bob like this.
  20. TheChunk91

    TheChunk91 Gold Member Gold Member

    Aug 15, 2013
    The way I see it with a stockman or cattle knife is there’s no extra bulk to have a 3rd blade but many payoffs.

    It can be used as a beater to preserve the other blades or saved as an always razor sharp backup blade. You could also just use any one of the three blades for the task they best fit. It’s so versatile.
    Old Hunter, Headwinds, CHNeal and 3 others like this.

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