Opinel vs Case Sodbuster

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May 23, 2003
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So everyone recommends the Opinel as a must have. Why not the Case Sodbuster instead? USA made- has a spring instead of just relying on friction. Has brass liners, handles that don't bind when wet for only a few bucks more.
 

stercus

In the grim future of Hello Kitty, there is only w
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In an odd coincidence I just ordered both of these knives the other day. Just waiting on them to come in the mail...
 
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probably cause a few bucks is more like twice the price, at least. that and maybe the 'rustic' attribute of a simple wooden handle.

plus, it's french, that's really exotic or something :p

that said, I got rid of my Opinel a while back, and have a yellow handled soddie jr.
 
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For the price they are both must haves. If you have too pick one its a nobrainer.
Case Sodbuster JR, CV in yellow
 
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Yea, its not really what you could consider just a few bucks more.

Right now my vote is with the Sodbuster Jr in CV. Overall I just like the sodbuster more since i don't trust the opinel to stay closed in my pockets. The one advantage I can see of the opinel is the tip. The sodbuster just doesn't have a real good point to work with.
 
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As an everyday user, I'd gravitate toward the Sodbuster. For one reason, really. I find a slipjoint easier to deploy than an Opinel with it's ring lock, which I always found to be a bit fiddly in use. It seems to demand more attention. Not an Earth shaking amount. Just a tiny bit more, such that I'd end up pocketing the Sodbuster and not the Opinel. A bit of a shame, since I prefer the Opinel's blade shape and range of sizes. I have no fear of slipjoints, but I can really appreciate the reliability of the Opinel lock. For tinkerers, the Opinel wins hands down. The design seems to beg for customization.
 
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If I wuz gonna do an apples-apples comparison, I'd have to compare the Opinel to the larger sodbuster.

I have the large Case sodbuster in both Stainless and CV (yes, Virginia, they made the large one in CV).
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For the long haul? I do believe I'd take the Case.

Yes, it cost more -- like three or four time times as much -- but in the end I prefer the heft and feel of the large Case.

For those of you whose sodbuster experience is the Case SB Jr. (or its Böker twin), you really have to handle the big one to appreciate what a handful it is.

For comparison's sake, it's the same size as a Buck 110.

From a practical standpoint, it comes down to whether you're gonna need the pointy style (Opinel) and the lock ('cuz yer gonna be poking things) or just need a reliable and robust cutting tool.

Either one will skin a deer or gut a fish.

Either one will make a salad or slice up fruit.
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So it's the tasks out on the edge of "proper" knife usage that will make the difference.

I believe I'll take the Case.

 
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Jan 4, 2007
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Opinel , mostly because you can get em at just about any sports /camping shop.

I'd really like to try a sodbuster , but Ive never seen any for sale in stores , or any Case knives for that matter.
The opinel is super easy to get really sharp , and very light , for its size.

I'd like a cherry red soddie with a carbon blade.
 
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So everyone recommends the Opinel as a must have. Why not the Case Sodbuster instead? USA made- has a spring instead of just relying on friction. Has brass liners, handles that don't bind when wet for only a few bucks more.
I think they're both great knives, and wouldn't hesitate to carry either. Some reasons though, since you asked, why a person might prefer an Opinel over a Sodbuster:

* Not just a 'few' dollars difference, the sodbuster costs more than twice as much as an Opinel.
* Lots of people prefer locking blades
* Natural handles vs. phony synthetic
* Opinel is ~much~ lighter
* Opinel is available in 10 different sizes, and different blade shapes, and different types of wood
* Seems, to me anyway, that the carbon Opinel is easier to get razor-sharp due to the thinner blade

Best Wishes,
-Bob
 
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Aug 24, 2007
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Good Thread. Both are excellent folders. My nod goes to the Soddie. I own three, Bull Dog, Eye Brand and a Case 2138. The Case is my favorite. Best F&F and very sharp.
 
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Sep 1, 2004
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You have seen that the locking ring has a cut out, that will lock the blade while closed??;)

Yes I know that. But because that cut out is cut in an angle and not straight, its not that secure. While the whole blade won't open, a good portion of the tip can get exposed. I use to carry an opinel until one day I reached into my pocket and pulled it out and the tip was out. After that I just left it on my desk to do misc. cutting jobs. Id rather not risk cutting myself, especially if I have other knives I can use.
 
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where are you guys finding these dirt cheap opinels?I paid $19 for my case sodbuster and you are buying opinals for one fourth the price?shipped?I would like to try one,especially at that price.
 
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where are you guys finding these dirt cheap opinels?I paid $19 for my case sodbuster and you are buying opinals for one fourth the price?shipped?I would like to try one,especially at that price.

Ebay. If you take your time, sooner or later you can get one in the $5-7 range, with $3-5 shipping.

I like my Opinel, but it is not what I would pick for an everyday carry. The blade can be honed to a wicked edge, and it will hold it. But it stains quickly. And if it gets wet or the humidity is up there, the wooden handle can swell, and make it difficult to move the blade in or out. I like the locking system, and have found it robust. But as others have noted, it can sometimes allow the blade to partially deploy when it is closed. Even when in the "locked closed" position. On a whole, I would pick a good slipjoint knife like the SB over these any day of the week. With the sole proviso being for jobs that require poking things, where a locking knife has the advantage.

-Mb
 
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where are you guys finding these dirt cheap opinels?I paid $19 for my case sodbuster and you are buying opinals for one fourth the price?shipped?I would like to try one,especially at that price.
Let's compare a Sodbuster to an Opinel at a major knife retailer. Using carbon steel models of each, and using the Opinel model that's most similar in size to the Opinel:

Sodbuster, CV, yellow plastic, $22.00.
http://www.eknifeworks.com/webapp/e...uster&list=50&range=1&order=Default&SKU=CA032

Opinel #9, carbon steel, $9.00.
http://www.eknifeworks.com/webapp/e...el&list=50&range=1&order=Default&SKU=OP113090

Shipping is the same for either knife, so a moot point.

The smaller non-locking Opinel knives start at $4.50 ea.
Set of ten carbon Opinels in gift box, $60. $6 per knife! Can't beat that.

The price difference between the Sodbuster and Opinel would not be a deciding factor for me, but it could be for some people.

Added to my above list of Opinel's advantages, ease of customization / modding. Lots of knife folks like to do that. I haven't yet, but a lanyard hole and bright orange paint would significantly increase the Opinel's usefulness for working outdoors.

-Bob
 
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Jul 15, 2007
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If I want wine or losing wars I'll pick france. If I need a knife I'll go with the US of A. Gimme a Sodbuster any day over an opinel.
 

G. Scott H.

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Jan 9, 2006
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Woot! A 5 year necro! :D As far as this debate goes, let's just say I got a new #10 today and a #8 Ebauche in carbon/cherry is on its way as we speak. :thumbup:
 

G. Scott H.

Gold Member
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opinel :thumbdn:

Now that's just cold, bro...:D

Actually, just about any decent old-school carbon folder is cool with me, be it a sodbuster, Opi, K55, Douk, or whatever. I like 'em all, though I do have a preference for Opinels. To each his own. :thumbup:
 
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