Is the Sebenza a good buy?

Sep 13, 1999
I have heard a great deal of how much people like their Sebenzas and I am interested in buying one(large, plain). They are rather pricey so I want to know if it is worth the money. I definitely want a user(for general utility) and a keeper, I would sooner buy one incredible knife once than several lower priced knives more often.
Assuming that the Sebenza suits your needs[hard to imagine that it wouldn't!], it is well worth every dime of its cost. Compared to some production knives, it may seem pricey, but in the long run, it is well worth the money, ESPECIALLY as a user.

Stay Sharp!
Will Fennell
Camillus Cutlery

Is a Sebenza a good buy?

Is a Steinway?

Is a Waterman pen?

Is a novel by Dickens?

(Sometimes I think the terms "value" and "bargain" and "deal" have been redefined by modern Wal-Mart America. A good buy isn't necessarily inexpensive. A good buy is one that delivers beyond expectations, one that gives you the feeling that you've gotten more than your money's worth. From what I've read on this board a lot of people think their Sebenzas are incredibly good buys.)

I don't want my children fed or clothed by the state, but I would prefer THAT to their being educated by the state.

[This message has been edited by Uncle Bill (edited 20 September 1999).]
The knife is worth the money. The tolerences are incredible. Oh, by the way I have a lg. plain available. If your interested drop me an e-mail.
What do I think of a sebenza? I hate knife cults the people get rabid and irrational. But if you want a knife to use there is no better folder made period. It is just plain good engineering, great quality control combined with excellent service. I have three total and have really abused the large one on the farm it is great. The south africans have not lost touch with the use of a knife they no what it takes to make it work. If you can afford it you will be very happy with it. But you must put it to work to really appreciate it.
I think Will said it best. The sebenza is great as a user. If you still think the price is a little steep, buy a used one. That's how I got my sebenza. Since you're going to use it anyway, if you get a used one, you won't have to wait for that first horrible scratch.

If you plan on using your knife and depending on it regularly, the Sebenza is a fine tool to investment in. It would serve you well.


If I said the Sebenza is perhaps the last folding and only folding knife you would ever need to buy would that make it a good buy?

Best Regards,
Mike Turber
BladeForums Site Owner and Administrator
Do it! Do it right! Do it right NOW!

A great knife, yes. A great buy, hmmmm, only you can decide that for yourself.
I have a lot of knives and I like everyone of them or I would get rid of them.My Sebenza is about 18 months old and I can't think of not owning it. I actually thought about buying it for over a year before I broke down and did it.The only advantage I gained by waiting was that Chris had changed from ATS-34 To BG-42 steel and I did get the BG-42,which is great.It still has a hair spliting edge and I've only touched it up once.I'm now going to get the large model as soon as I get the cash together.

YES You can't go wrong when you invest in a Sebenza. The knife itself is a wonder to behold and to use. The customer service from Chris Reeve Knives is second to NONE!(Hello Anne) I have yet to have a reason to complain or read of anyone else having a reason to complain about the knife or the service(except having to wait for theirs).
I have had mine for almost a year now and like others I deliberated for quite some time before buying mine. I have not once regreted my decision. Nor, do I think will you.

"Worst of all my foes, I fear the enemy within"
*John Wesley*

Romans 10:9-10

"Military" Fans Unite!!

A lot of controversy has come up over the past months on this very topic, `Is it worth the money?' Typically you will find those die hard fans that will expound on the virtues of the knife, and others that are not so taken with the Reeve company, but they may be venting anger over not having one? I've been fortunate enough to be in the first category and have three of the Sebenzas, both old and new style large and a new style small and couldn't be happier with them. For the money, it was worth it to me! They do cut well and are a very strong design. You could do a LOT worse....but that is, as are all the rest, just one persons opinion. It'll be up to you as to the worry if it's worth the money or not. Place a post in the Wanted Section for a Sebenza and you might be surprised at the offers that come your way, some below what they are currently selling for now, some new-in-box some with character marks already on the handle.

Go for it!


It ain't those parts of the Bible that I can't understand that bother me,
it is the parts that I do understand.
Mark Twain

Go for it guy. You ain't lived until you see the look on your wife's face as you shell out that $325 for a pocket knife. Acutally, my wife is very outstanding and very understanding. She actually came with me to the New Orleans Guild show where I bought the Sebenza from a fellow there and then went over and got Chris to personally sign my box. I finally found someone with a signature worse than mine! Chris and Anne are really nice people. They answered all my questions and were a reall treat to meet in person.

My only real qualm with the Sebenza is the handle ergonomics...

So, for an extremely comparable price, I'd recommend purchasing a custom, namely Allen Elishewitz's new titanium handled mono-lock Ares. In my opinion, the design is head and shoulders above the Sebenza's design, besides, you'd be getting a custom too!

I need a bigger bucket.
It is a bit pricey. If you value well engineered (make that bullet-proof) tools and are actually willing to use it the way it was intended, then yes, this is a good buy.

Let me put it this way, in a "round about" manner I traded a fullsize AFCK, a mini-AFCK in M-2, a high capa$ity Glock magazine, a Glock recoil reducer (don't ask), and a few bucks for my small Sebenza. I can honestly say that I have never regretted it and I don't miss those other knives when I'm using the sebenza.

The lockup is better than any other producion or semi-production knife that I've handled. The lock mechanism is simple in design, very difficult to defeat and very very strong. The tolerances are phenominally(?) tight and the BG-42 (with stone-washed finish!) makes for a great user. It holds an edge for a long time and it seems to "bite" better than ATS-34. Plus that cool finish hides all but the nastiest of scratches on the blade.

Not sure I'd spend much more than that for a real user. I'm also not sure one of the REKAT Pioneer II or BM Axis Locks are that much worse. In all fairness, if quality of workmanship is a lower priority for you (or you're not one of those people that smiles when they recognize the little quality details) then you might do just as well to look at those offerings.

But, if I had to do it all over again I would skip the regular production knives and would go immediately to the 'benza. It turned out to be "the" knife for me...

I don't consider myself a Sebenza zealot, but it really is a superb "using" folder with few or no equals in the production world. If you feel $300+ (US$) is too much for a using knife then by all means check out some of the $75 to $175 knives.

I have an older model small sebenza and it is my favourite folder. I think it has better ergonomics than the newer ones. Mine does have a stonewashed blade, and supposedly only BG-42 blades were stonewashed, so I may have a bit of an anachronistic knife.

Anyways, it is a great knife. As far as value, that's up to you. I know my personal price limit on knives is around $250 (ironically, what I paid for my Sebbie). I know people that have customs worth thousands of dollars. I have a friend at work that thinks $20 for a Spyderco is too much. It's all up to you.

Clay Fleischer
AKTI Member A000847

Specialization is for insects.
Yes, ditto reasons above.

Also, esp ditto Wllm Johnson's comment that Chris Reeve Knives' customer svc is TOPS. Minus egregious abuse (like regrinding the blade, etc), if it fails you, you will get a new one, pronto, w/the most courteous, no BS svc around.

Finally, to reiterate old arguments from the past:
1) Yes, you can find a less costly knife for opening mail, paring fruit, etc; but if you're willing to spend this much, the quality can't be beat.
2) If you're willing to spend *more* $, then folks here would probably pt to other knives worth considering. But keep in mind that you need to spend MORE to match the Sebenza's quality.
3) The Sebenza is one of those rare knives which has not simply been "a fad" (which it is, too), but which has genuinely redefined knife design. The knives which are typically cited in its same class (or "better") are all knives which, to my knowledge:
A -- derived at least some of their own designs and inspiration from the advances made by the Sebenza; and therefore,
B -- came AFTER the Sebenza. Which is to say, it's truly responsible for starting a new direction in knifemaking. So you get HISTORY along w/the quality.


PS If you don't like it, return it. For the price of S&H, at least then you'll have some kind of informed opinion about a knife everyone talks about...

[This message has been edited by storyville (edited 21 September 1999).]
I sold off 4 knives and traded another towards my Sebenza, and I regret it not one bit.

Most knives corrode on me, this one has not even blushed.

I have taken it apart twice, and both times it went back together perfectly, what a treat.

Now that I have it, I want a Left to match it, have one on order.

I hate tantos, but plan on getting the Tanto Sebenza.

Now that I have it, the Pinnacle and S-2 are jokes, literally.

I walk into a knife shop and think, boy, my Sebenza is cool.

I could accept this knife as my last folder.

In fact, it has strengthened my interest in sheath knives.

Only downside is that it is not all the fast.

Marion David Poff aka Eye, one can msg me at If I fail to check back with this thread and you want some info, email me.

My site is at: Including my review of the Kasper AFCK, thougths on the AFCK and interview of Bob Kasper.

"We will either find a way, or make one." Hannibal, 210 B.C.