What do you suppose is the life-expectancy of the Axis-Lock mechanism?

I'm considering giving up my attachment to liner locks since I am beginning to believe that the Axis locking mechanism may not be as affected by wear over the years. Could this be faulty thinking on my part, or do these new knives have the potential to have a locking mechanism that could outlive the blade with medium to hard daily use. Thanks in advance for you responses, and I hope that I was clear in my query.


Musical Director
Mar 22, 1999
Benchmade gives a life-time warranty on all of their knives.

Fundamentally, simplier mechanisms are usually more reliable. It doesn't get much simplier than a liner lock

The Axis lock has two small springs in it that move the lock. That's probably the weak point in it. I also think the Axis lock looks more susceptible to dirt buildup and harder to clean out.

Benchmade liner locks have a small bump on the liner that the blade rides on. That will, inevitably, wear down over time and make the mechanism less smooth.

In spite of their simplicity, Liner locks are a fairly precise mechanism. Precision degrades over time with wear.

Personally, though, I suspect that I'll beat the blade to death before either lock give up.

The Axis lock is certaily a wonderful bit of engineering and works very smoothly. I think it locks up more positively than a liner lock does.

I heard tht it was not Y2K compliant. So 1/1/00, asta-la-vista-babe'....hehe
Gollnick told it just about the way I would have, too, except I don't agree with beating the blade to death before either lock would give up. My BM Stryker's blade still looks fine and is very sharp, but the liner lock has given up to my standards. It has moved all the way over hitting the opposite liner, real hard to close the knife now. I am now even seeing my liner lock on my Emerson Commander starting to wear down.

An Axis lock would be an excellent choice as well as Rolling lock. Being the Axis is still new it is hard to tell how long or good it will really hold up as of yet.

The best would be an integral lock.



"Benchmade liner locks have a small bump on the liner that the blade rides on. That will, inevitably, wear down over time and make the mechanism less smooth."

Are you referring to the ball detent? I began to worry about that part too lately. I think the biggest concern about the ball detent when it's worn is that the blade will open inadvertently. I have a few liner locks that are 'too easy to open' because the balls have become "too smooth".

I agree about the Axis Lock. If you see it form the side, there's a gap between the G10 scale and the liner just where the lock slides in it's path. I found out that it is too easy to collect lints in there, although I haven't seen an Axis Lock fails to open or unlock. The easiest way to clean that gap is to use pressured water or compressed air. I'm still unwilling to dissasemble an Axis Lock as it will void my warranty.

But I personally think although the springs will probably weaken over the time, they will last indefinitely.

Take care,

I just got an Axis, and I have been flicking it open, sometimes really hard, for two days now, and I have yet to see any progression of the lock bar across the tang of th blade. I have played with bunches of linerlocks and have seen them lock up inconsistantly even on the first day. The Axis should outlast your thumbs at least.

I think just about every linerlock I've owned has shown wear.Some of them on the FIRST day of use! Anyway I've had my Axis for several weeks now and I use it everyday.Alot of times it just gets played with.I have not seen any signs of wear in this lock. If I bear down on a cut this lock does'nt even jam like a linelock sometimes does.This lock is good and it is fun to use.
scott w
So sorry to be the bad news bringer here but I´m now running on my last Omega spring(there are two of them). I have fun opening/closing my favorite folders more than necessary so that explains it all. A bit of good news: it still wouldn´t close even with the Barr/Talmadge lock-strength tests (although the blade doesn´t get "sucked" with authority into the handle the last few mm of its travel now).
I´m back to my large Sebenza these days but I´m still convincing myself that I don´t really need a diamond-checkered thumb-disk on it to make it ambidextrous. By the way, on my large Seb the ball detent is almost touching the washer when I open it with a thumb flick!

In Christ,

I have had my Pinnacle for several months now. When I first got it, the lock sat on flush with the edge of the blade and was a bear to disengage. Now, the integral lock has moved towards a 1/16" from the other side and is working perfectly. But, that's a lot of wear in a short time, (Yes. I have flickitis too.) The good thing is that the blade on that side has a steep angle machined in, almost a small bump. It'll take awhile to get through there. I suspect when the lock wears to the other side, there'll be blade play but it won't close or get jammed by the lock because of the lock's thickness.

Are you saying that the spring broke in your Axis?That does'nt sound good to me.
scott w

Sadly, yes.

"The horse is prepared against the day of battle: but safety is of the Lord"
Proverbs 21:31

That's one of the beauty parts about an Integral Lock, the thickness will keep it virtually impossible to jam or to close accidently due to wear. Some play in the blade may develope once the lock works it's way over (which I am sure will be a very long time), but maybe by tightening the pivot that may counteract that problem if it ever arrises. Still, an Integral Lock is the safest, strongest, and longest lasting lock on a folder from what I can tell. Being I am over 40 now, Integral Locks should outlast me! What did I just do, tell my age?


" Knife Collectors Are Sharp People -- Most of the time, that is! "


Don't forget that Benchmade has a lifetime warranty and they do honor it quickly and completely.

I'm also sure that, since the Axis lock is very new, they'd love to examine your broken knife.

Thanks so much for the posts fellows. My thinking is that replacing the omega springs in the axis lock would be much less traumatic and less expensive than replacing a liner lock or the entire side of the handle that was the lock. All the screws on my axis accidentally "fell out all at once" and I had the opportunity to see what was involved in replacing the springs. One thing that definitely gripes me about the axis is the Delrin spacer; I'm thinking about either machining a G10 spacer or just using either stainless or phenolic rings to create the EDI and Rekat approach. Anybody got a source on those omega springs, other than BM? Thanks again for the responses.

[This message has been edited by Professor (edited 16 April 1999).]
I thought about that spacer modification too.I would also like to see it shorter to give it more of an open back like the AFCK.
scott w
I am open to the idea of a better spacer...I hate it when corners are cut...

I had considered replacing the spacer on my 710 with a couple of phenolic 'tubes' or bushings, between the handle slabs. However, I decided not to, as I wasn't sure whether that would allow the handle to flex. I guess the metal liners should be stiff enough by themselves, but I wasn't sure. Anyone have any thoughts on this?

Just wondering, guys, what's so bad about the delrin spacer? Are your gripes mainly aimed at the cosmetics of the delrin, or its function?
I subject my knives to no abuse because I want them to work properly when I need them. However, the spacer on my CQC7 broke into several pieces. I know not why. I sent it back to BM and they replaced it. I agree all parts should be quality parts. Remember the weak link and the chain story.