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What knives would you include on an all-time landmark/watershed knife list?

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by SanLuisObispo, Nov 17, 2020.

  1. GIRLYmann


    Nov 7, 2005
    yes indeed.. ouch!

    a much finer set of teeth was utilized
    for the soviet akms :)
    which appears to have been adopted on a couple of different manufactured sawback
    bayonets by other nations since
  2. Smaug

    Smaug Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 30, 2003
    Well, two reasons:

    1. I felt like it was a cop-out to include the entire huge Griptilian series.
    2. I feel like the 550-1 is "best in breed".
      1. It has the 20CV blade steel, which is a small upgrade from S30V and a large upgrade from the old 154CM
      2. It has the G10 scales whose traction is not overly aggressive (as the standard FRN scales are),
      3. It has the "SpydieHole", which is more appropriate to this design, since it will not interfere with through cuts like the thumb stud does.
    The 555-1 (which I think is the Mini version of the above) is a contender for those who prefer the smaller size.
    strategy9 likes this.
  3. Smaug

    Smaug Gold Member Gold Member

    Jun 30, 2003
    That would be a separate thread, since first SpydieHole (for example) is not necessarily the watershed version of the knife. Sal Glesser would surely agree.
    strategy9 likes this.
  4. Skidoosh

    Skidoosh Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 21, 2016
    #10 Scalpel
  5. spoonrobot


    May 1, 2004
    That doesn't make them any less boring, nor does it save them from outdated materials, tech, and construction styles. There have been new watershed knives in the intervening 60+ years since those knives were released, from which I would choose for such a list. Good knives from the past are still good knives, even if they're not as good as good knives from the current year.
  6. afishhunter

    afishhunter Basic Member Basic Member

    Oct 21, 2014
    Mora with red Birchwood grips.
    Opinel, and other friction folders/"Penny Knives".
    Buck 110.
    Barlow. (has been in production since the 1700's)
    Sunfish (large 4 inch plus closed).
    Marlin Spike.
    Swiss Army knives.
    "Nessmuk" and "Kephart" fixed blades.
    Old Hickory and Russell Green River "Buffalo" skinner, (honorable mention to the slightly smaller "Sheep's Skinner")
    Hudson Bay pattern fixed blade.
    While I have zero use for one, a "Bowie knife".
    Douk Douk.
    Drawing a blank on the original's name. :( The Cold Steel Kudu and Eland are copies.

    4 blade Scout/Camp/Utility/"Demo" knife.
    Hal and Smaug like this.
  7. SanLuisObispo


    Nov 14, 2020
    "That doesn't make them any less boring..."

    I didn't ask about "boring", "stale" or "mummified." I asked about two specific qualities. The knives mentioned are particularly germane to this thread.
  8. E.D.C.

    E.D.C. Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 7, 2016
    The true winners in this category in current production are the KA-BAR 1217 USMC, the Buck 119 and the Buck 110. With a smattering of Barlow and trapper pattern knives in the mix.
    Henry Beige likes this.
  9. E.D.C.

    E.D.C. Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 7, 2016

    Indeed, knife designs from the past are almost always better at CUTTING things. May not be flashy or tactical but they cut.
  10. spoonrobot


    May 1, 2004
    Old classics, now irrelevant:
    Ka-Bar USMC Knife
    Victorinox 40P
    Case Peanut
    Opinel No 5
    Schrade 1080
    Schrade SP2

    Mid-century advancement:
    Buck 110 one-arm bandit - one hand opening
    Buck quick-draw sheath - "auto" open folding knife from pocket/sheath
    USAF Pilot Survival Knife - Knife designed to pry, saw, and baton
    Spyderco Worker - integral one hand open and close
    Boye Cobalt Folder - rust proof folding knife
    Victornix keychain knife - blades to the masses
    Parker Stockman - japanese knives designed and imported by American company on large scale
    Gerber Bolt-Action - injection molded handle, one hand open and close refinement
    Chris Reeve Sebenza - titanium framelock, knives as "expensive" products with high standard

    Benchmade 720 - aluminum handle mass production, popularized axis lock
    Benchmade 750 - titanium framelock mass production
    CRKT M16 - popularized flippers
    Emerson Commander Wave - further refinement of "auto" open folder
    Spyderco Pacific Salt - H1 steel, rust proof with more acceptable sharpness/edge retention
    Chris Reeve MKVI - one piece hollow handle
    RAT-3 - EDC size full-tang fixed blade
    Kershaw Leek - assisted opening
    CRKT Ripple - popularize IKBS
    Spyderco Mule - designed specifically to test different steels in the same form factor

    Ganzo 720 - Chinese knock-off knives are now "good"
    Cold Steel American Lawman - tri-ad lock
    Medford Praetorian - titanium framelock, visual design cues over pure function
    ZT0456 - steel lockbar insert for titanium flippers
    ESEE-6 - full-tang fixed blade designed to pry & baton
    Spyderco Manix Maxamet - ultra-high performance steel in a small & relatively inexpensive folder

    Just a list off the top of my head
  11. spoonrobot


    May 1, 2004
    Depends on what and where you're cutting. If it's not warm, dry, and low-stress cutting material that easily yields once started - most of those designs are pretty poor. There's nothing worse than having to use a Buck 110 to cut 150 times over a 12 hour day outside in the mud and rain. It beats up your hands unnecessarily and as the day wears on it becomes a chore to close where the blade wants to bite every time it snaps shut. It cuts great, but it's slippery and heavy and has outdated ergonomics.

    Regardless, these discussions always devolve into who's pocket talisman is better. I'm not interested in that, it's much more interesting to just use the knives, figure out how they perform and discuss strengths weaknesses.
  12. Tyson A Wright

    Tyson A Wright Basic Member Basic Member

    Jun 9, 2020
    But you seem to be the main one doing that in this thread. This is supposed to landmark/watershed knives, but you keep insisting on denigrating the ones that aren't interesting in your opinion. Even when you gave a list to meet the topic of the thread, you made to sure to label one category as "irrelevant". So if you keep pushing, you shouldn't be surprised when people push back.

  13. E.D.C.

    E.D.C. Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 7, 2016
  14. E.D.C.

    E.D.C. Gold Member Gold Member

    Nov 7, 2016
    If my task is cold, wet, and high-stress I bring a fixed blade, especially in a work environment. And I find the 110 a pleasure to operate and use inside it's design parameters, which are centered around cleaning game in the field, at which it excells.

    But you are right my friend, it does often go that way. This is all in good fun and in the name of discussion though, for those of us without an agenda.
    Lesknife likes this.
  15. strategy9

    strategy9 Gold Member Gold Member

    Apr 27, 2015
    Without completely falling into the rabbit hole of specific historically significant knives, (but agreeing with others), Merriam-Webster defines "watershed" as:
    -a crucial dividing point, line, or factor : TURNING POINT
    (Not the "nicest" persay)

    So the list would certainly be incomplete without;
    An early axis lock
    An early TriAd lock
    An early spydie hole
    An early Emerson wave
    An early CRK frame lock

    Even as more recent-ish developments, they all certainly have significantly impacted the current knife market in the folder realm.

    One specific I would also add to the list, as someone mentioned the AKM used by the Soviets, would be the 1st prod. M4 bayonet used with M1 carbines, as the sword like bayonets, (like the infamous 1907 model), were being replaced more and more by knife like bayonets, the M4 has that iconic "fighting knife" design;
    a quick search shows they were produced by;
    Aerial Cutlery Manufacturing Co.
    Camillus Cutlery Co.
    W.R. Case & Sons Cutlery Co.
    Imperial Knife Co.
    Kinfolks Inc.
    Pal Blade and Tool Co.
    Utica Cutlery Co.

    Also what is considered the 1st "knife" bayonet to be a regular issue in a major army, developed in Germany some 60 years earlier, the Seitengewehr, m1871/84... not really the "turning point" persay, but certainly the pioneer...

    Followed up by the 1st Gen. Phrobis III M9 getting honorable mention, based on the russian AKM, which both gave us the current designs.
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2020
  16. stevekolt

    stevekolt Gold Member Gold Member

    Jan 9, 2007
    Buck 119
    Buck 110 - I think I prefer the 112 myself
    Swiss Army Classic - I seem to remember reading that this is the #1 selling knife worldwide...I could be wrong of course.
    Case Peanut/Trapper
    Spyderco Delica/Endura/Paramilitary 2
    CRK Sebenza
    Henry Beige and ATJ999 like this.
  17. sabre cat

    sabre cat Basic Member Basic Member

    Jul 4, 2014
    OK, now I understand.

    And I agree with you that the 550 is best in class if you ignore the Ritter model.

    As for the -1, it’s blade steel is a matter of personal preference. And, yes, the G10 scales are superior, without question.

    However the FRN scales serve me just fine even though I would like to upgrade. I have four Griptilians and my wallet and myself do not see eye to eye about the purchase of four sets of scales.

    As for the Mini, once again, it is a matter of preference. I have grown to appreciate the full size Griptilian instead. It is better with work gloves than the Mini.

    The Mini will always excel in one area though. Pocket carry.

    Overall, you make a good argument for the 550-1. I tip my hat to you for your logic and reasoning.
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2020
  18. sabre cat

    sabre cat Basic Member Basic Member

    Jul 4, 2014
    [QUOTE="strategy9, post: 20145310, member: 417310"

    ....One specific I would also add to the list, would be the 1st prod. M4 bayonet used with M1 carbines....[/QUOTE]

    Why not the M3 Trench Knife?

    All M4 through M7 bayonets are based on the M3.
  19. fonedork

    fonedork Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Jul 7, 2011
    I think that's the Okapi knife from South Africa :)
    Smaug, afishhunter and Wurger190 like this.
  20. sabre cat

    sabre cat Basic Member Basic Member

    Jul 4, 2014
    Me too.

    Just for weight if nothing else.
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2020

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