The $100 Traditional Knife Collection

Discussion in 'Traditional Folders and Fixed Blades' started by WhittlinAway, Oct 15, 2016.

  1. WhittlinAway

    WhittlinAway Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 11, 2016
    One of the things I value about the Porch is that inexpensive production knives are celebrated right alongside high-dollar custom ones. Does it cut well and do you enjoy using it? Yes? Well, friend, post a picture and you're sure to find folks who share your appreciation of it.

    A couple of weeks ago I started pondering what a $100 traditional knife starter set might look like. Along the way, I came to the conclusion that it need not be a starter set. I believe with $100 you can build a complete collection that offers a rich and satisfying experience. In fact, I believe that many such collections are possible.

    I really enjoyed thinking through what my $100 collection would be. It made me think hard about my tastes and what I value in a knife. I'll share my collection below and invite you to do the same.

    These are the constraints I gave myself, and I ask that you follow them, too, so that we maintain the spirit of the original experiment:

    - Each knife must be easily obtainable. It's OK to include out-of-production knives as long as they are readily available in new condition.
    - You do not need to currently own the knives you select.
    - Any traditional knife is welcome: slipjoints, friction folders, fixed blades, whatever you like that fits in here.
    - Use realistic prices--no counting on special deals from your rich friend who has too many knives.
    - Ignore the cost of shipping.

    My understanding is that we're not supposed to discuss specifics of knife prices here, so please don't itemize the costs of your collection. I'll trust you that you summed them up and they were within the $100 budget.

    Without further ado, here is my $100 collection:


    - A. Wright Buffalo Lambsfoot--handsome; hand made; stout, reassuring pull; versatile workhorse.
    - Camillus #72--wonderful selection of blades for whittling, just sharpen and go; lovely clip main of just the right size; tackles all of my EDC use cases; out of production but still easy to find in new condition on auction sites.
    - Victorinox Tinker--stainless and sharp; great companion for traveling; easy to replace on the go.

    I welcome comments and discussion on my collection and encourage you to post your $100 collections, too. I expect there will be a lot of variation based on people's tastes, and I'm looking forward to seeing what folks come up with.
  2. mrknife

    mrknife Gold Member Gold Member

    May 9, 2010
    Hmm, $100, for all new knives. id go buck 119 for a fixed blade, which can go for around $30-40 depending where you buy it, the rest would go for an opinel $10-12, SAK, pocket pal, classic, spartan, hiker ( all under the $30 range), then maybe a rough rider. $100 is a lot to play with, and can go along way :D
  3. SVTFreak

    SVTFreak Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 8, 2011
    Mine would be a buck 301 (40$), a buck 119 (45$). I'm all honesty that would do everything I would ever need to do knife wise. But it wouldn't be much fun!

    Edit: I would actually probably choose the medium case stockman pattern over the 301.
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2016
  4. jc57

    jc57 Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 28, 2012
    10 Rough Riders of assorted patterns.
  5. WhittlinAway

    WhittlinAway Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 11, 2016
    Which patterns? :D
  6. cbr1000


    Jan 31, 2013
    Maybe a case peanut, a SAK alox pioneer, and a used/mint vintage USA schrade 340T would be my $100 collection.
  7. Will Power

    Will Power

    Jan 18, 2007
    A very interesting and valuable idea for a thread.:thumbup:

    I have quite a lot of knives, some expensive some modest in price. The latter often afford the most pleasure as you get something worthwhile, satisfying and yet inexpensive. I've never really believed in the mantra 'you get what you pay for' as there is often so much evidence to the contrary...more like you expect to get what you pay for (good luck with that!)

    Anyway, 100 USD is a reasonable sum for a decent user collection that gives pleasure (even if dollars are not my currency but I get the point).

    I'd suggest the following:

    Queen Cutlery Country Cousin Sodbuster in D2. Why? It feels better in my hand than the CASE equivalent, the steel is really good and I got mine for under 30 USD which is a bargain. Tough but comfortable delrin handled work-knife, very nice to use on nearly all tasks. Durable.

    Buck 303 Yelow Delrin Small Stockman. Why? Decent Buck stainless, corrosion proof no brass or carbon, very good construction and a useful choice of 3 blades in a compact knife. Also in black saw cut delrin if you prefer.

    Opinel No.7 In carbon. (you can choose stainless if you prefer) Why? Real heritage in these knives, simplicity, robust, nothing to go wrong. Great in hand feel yet light wooden handle and it locks. One of THE best slicers you can get, wonderful food prep knife plus more.


    A Marttiini Puukko in carbon. Why? Well here in Finland the puukko is the outdoor knife :D and even though there are stellar makers of custom versions, I prefer mine simple, robust and affordable. These are even cheaper in the USA. It has a very good tight sheath so you can't lose the knife and the dangler strap means you can sit down without the knife handle jabbing your ribs or guts in an unpleasant way. Very tough simple knife which has lots of uses, food, fish/game prep, making firesticks, gardening, you name it. Many models and versions some in stainless. These knives arrive deadly sharp, so don't let anybody tell you new knives don't need to be sharp! It would be considered a disgrace to leave the factory blunt.

    I chose these knives to give, range of blade steels: D2, Stainless, Carbon. Range of use, I single blade work-knife, 1 multi blade(3 of them) and/or a locking blade and a fixed sheath knife. Obviously, Rough Rider offer many decent inexpensive Traditionals so you could opt for them over Buck (but Buck is free of brass and tarnish, very durable too) SAK have loads of excellent inexpensive models, the Farmer or Pioneer being my faves. My choices all look quite nice and they are very robust durable knives that could last more than a lifetime, I carry them often and like them all. Looking forward to others' variations.

    Thanks, Will.


    Queen Country Cousin in D2 and RR Eureka Stockman in stainless. This could substitute the Buck 303 if you like as it's a very nice inexpensive tough 3 blade Traditional. Sunk joints too which is exceptional in a knife this inexpensive.

    A carbon puukko from Marttiini. Beats Mora in my book, and they're a decent knife too:D

    Last edited: Oct 15, 2016
  8. r redden

    r redden Platinum Member Platinum Member

    May 23, 2015
    Just checked prices on line and these total just under $100 dollars. If I wanted a collection of traditional knives with good variety and use ability with decent quality for $!00 this is what I'd buy.

    !. Rough Rider Camp Knife
    2. Rough Rider Peanut
    3. Rough Rider Trapper
    4. Rough Rider Stockman
    5. Rough Rider Barlow
    6. Victorinox Tinker
    7. Opinel #8
    8. Morakniv Companion for a fixed blade
  9. WhittlinAway

    WhittlinAway Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 11, 2016
    Thank you everyone that has participated so far and suggested $100 collections. I'm enjoying seeing them.

    Will I enjoyed reading your whys as much as I did the whats. Thank you for taking the time to include them. :thumbup:
    Storm 8593 likes this.
  10. waynorth

    waynorth Dealer / Materials Provider Dealer / Materials Provider

    Nov 19, 2005
    Good idea for a thread WA!!
    Hey Will - I like that Puukko you posted. Do you mind telling me the size?
    Also, is the sheath leather??
    I can only dream of a $100 collection!!:rolleyes:
  11. Rupestris

    Rupestris Gold Member Gold Member

    Mar 1, 2006
    For that price I'd have to go with:

    Buck 110
    Case Sodbuster Jr.
    Victorinox Alox Cadet

    You'd have a couple dollars left over. Maybe enough to get a Rough Rider Peanut or Half Whittler. Either way, you're off to a good start.
    Storm 8593 likes this.
  12. Jody744

    Jody744 Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 8, 2009
    Opinel #8, $11
    Victorinox alox pioneer $26
    Condor mini bushlore <$30
    AG Russell cowboy @$30
  13. black mamba

    black mamba Gold Member Gold Member

    Oct 21, 2009
    Multi-tool: Alox Cadet
    Small Slipjoint: RR Eureka Stockman
    Large Slipjoint: Queen #41 Copperhead or #20 Toothpick
    Fixed Blade: Morakniv Companion or RR176 Drop Point
  14. LaunchPad


    Jul 1, 2013
    Some combinations come to mind around that price point:

    Victorinox Pioneer X
    Case CV Peanut
    Schrade USA Sharpfinger

    Victorinox Huntsman
    Bear & Son Carbon Lockback
    Mora #1
    Opinel #7

    Victorinox Tinker
    Yellow Case CV Stockman
    Bear and Son Carbon Bird and Trout
    Storm 8593 likes this.
  15. Jack Black

    Jack Black Gold Member Gold Member

    Dec 2, 2005
    Nice idea for a thread Greg, I'd also definitely include an Arthur Wright Lambsfoot, maybe a Douk-Douk Écureuil, and Aitor Castor. Think I'd still have plenty left for a RR Peanut and a Svord Peasant Mini or something from Otter.

    With the poor state of £ Sterling, $100 will buy you a handful of nice old Sheffield knives over here at the moment though, and that's probably where I'd invest my cash :thumbup:
  16. Will Power

    Will Power

    Jan 18, 2007
    Charlie Not sure of the size as it's out in the country, medium I'd say, about 20cm/8 " overall. Yes, it's leather with a plastic liner for protection, so the blade can't cut its way out, nicely done. I find the finger notch very useful indeed. Will check the specs when I go there next week.
  17. Henry Beige

    Henry Beige Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 1, 2015
    Opinel #8 (or 7 or 6)
    Mora 612
    RR Improved Muskrat
    Alox Farmer
    Case medium stockman
  18. deltaboy


    Jul 6, 2014
    8OT Stockman
    CASE Texas Jack
    SAK Camper.
  19. 5K Qs

    5K Qs Gold Member Gold Member

    Jul 20, 2014
    How about if I tell you what I spent my first $100 on when my interest in pocket knives was rekindled starting in January 2014?
    I picked up a couple of Chinese Bucks, a 373 Trio and a 379 Solo at Mr. Sam's store in early February 2014:

    In April 2014, I ordered a "set" of 12 amber jigged bone Rough Riders from that big river site (best deal ever :thumbup:):
    1. A Barlow

    2. A Camp knife

    3. A Canoe

    4. A Congress

    5. A lockback Hunter (3.5")

    6. A Muskrat
    (can't find any photos of this one; must have "purged" them after I gave it away)

    7. A Sowbelly Stockman

    8. A large Toothpick

    9. A full-size Trapper

    10. A full-size one-arm Trapper

    11. A medium Trapper

    12. A Whittler

    Not at all a bad way to get a collection/accumulation started, and I learned some things about my tastes from these 14 knives. I learned that I don't like carrying the trappers very much; still have them though. I learned that I tend to prefer at least 2 different blades over single blades, and traded away the lockback hunter and gave away the toothpick and the Buck Solo (although I now have quite a few single-bladed knives that I enjoy). I also gave away the RR muskrat and the scout/camp knife (but bought another camp knife later). I learned that the canoe and the sowbelly made my soul sing, and the Barlow was a very comfortable pattern.

    Maybe I'll post again with one or more other ways that I might spend $100 on knives, knowing what I know after about 3 years of knife experience and learning. Fun thread, Greg!! :thumbup::D
    Storm 8593 likes this.
  20. GasMan1

    GasMan1 Gold Member Gold Member

    May 27, 2015



    Opinel 8, SwayBack Gent and the Victorinox Sentry can be had for under $100. I use them alot for some pretty seriously mundane task. :rolleyes:.

    I have not tried the Sowbelly yet. But it looks like I'm missing out. I might have to give it a try. If it makes Garys soul sing, well then, I really got to see what I'm missing. :D
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2016

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