What's with Case and their quality?

Discussion in 'General Knife Discussion' started by VicAlox74, Oct 26, 2019.

  1. VicAlox74


    Nov 4, 2018
    For years, if i wanted a new Case i have had to go through 4-5 knives of the same pattern to get one that was decent. This has not changed. Handles not even with bolsters, pins showing, weak springs, blade burrs ect. And the price increases 2-3 times a year. I don't get it.

    My first pocket knife given to me was a Case small stockman. I like Case but with everything mentioned, its sad to see an American company put out a product that is a shadow of what it use to be quality wise.

    To me Victorinox has better quality. I don't have the issues with the SAK's i buy.

    Anyone else tired of the poor quality from Case?
    Tuna likes this.
  2. Tuna

    Tuna Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 17, 2019
    Both of the Case barlows I bought this year had significant play on all blades. They have been sent in for warranty repairs but apparently even their repair department is lacking in QC, as one was returned to me with even more blade play than it originally had. It will be hard for me to justify spending any more money on Case knives, unfortunately.
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2019
    urbantrapper likes this.
  3. VicAlox74


    Nov 4, 2018
    I saw a Case that was sent into their repair shop. You wouldn't believe me if i told you how bad it looked. It was awful. That repair person should be embarrassed.
  4. knarfeng

    knarfeng senex morosus moderator Staff Member Super Mod Moderator

    Jul 30, 2006
    The design of the SAK is such that they don't need the same precision alignment that Case does. With an SAK most of the joints are hidden and you just see the handle, so any imperfections in alignment are hidden. Also, the Case knife materials require more hand steps to ensure precise fitting and coloration.

    I have about a dozen Case knives. None of them were hand picked by me. I have a couple with slightly uneven springs, and one with uneven coloration of the bone. For the price I paid for the knives, what I got is very good. They are at least equal in quality with the knives I grew up with as a kid in the 50's and 60's, when knives were everyday tools instead of collector pieces which require perfection.
    vba, Edgeoflife, TheFactor and 10 others like this.
  5. Rich S

    Rich S

    Sep 23, 2005
    I never cared for Case for the reasons you mentioned. I've carried a SAK Tinker for years. IMHO, Rough Rider puts out product that is on a par or better than Case at a third the cost. I know they are China made, but they are well made. RRs and SAKs are my main EDCs now and have been for years.
    bflying, afishhunter and Rhema like this.
  6. Tuna

    Tuna Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 17, 2019
    All else being equal, I would trade a knife with blade play for a knife without play, but including the issues you mentioned in some of your Case knives, in a heartbeat. If I can wiggle the blade without much effort, I don’t have much confidence in it as a tool.
    Crewchief1971 and Lee D like this.
  7. buckeyejake


    Dec 28, 2013
    Two very different designs. Todays case is just as good as it gets . The big thing is case cv steel is very good .
    Victorinox stainless not so much . It doesnt hold much of an edge. I have carried one for 22 years .
    One word soft.

  8. BenchCo Spydermade

    BenchCo Spydermade

    Feb 10, 2014
    I find the case knives I have to be of enduring quality. They are all about 40-70$, so not crazy expensive. Also, the fit and finish is way beyond what i see in cheap schrades, but rough riders have an outstanding fit and finish for their price. But rough riders steel is unusable to me. I dont get why all my case knives came with crude, rough edges with giant burrs, but I can fix that at least. They certainly cant sharpen, but their overall products are pretty good IMO.
    buckeyejake likes this.
  9. popedandy


    Dec 8, 2006
    All of my Case knives are just fine. I have only owned about a dozen, but the only one that didn't have good fit and finish was a yellow delrin penknife with cv blades that I bought about a dozen years ago, but I only paid $25 for it and it functioned well. I am disappointed when I hear about problems with Case knives because I know they can put out a good product.
    jux t and buckeyejake like this.
  10. Wowbagger


    Sep 20, 2015
    First off the short answer :
    No. I can't remember having a real problem with a Case knife.
    I buy a lot of Case Knives; mostly Trappers but this year in particular Tear Drop, Copper Lock and Tribal Lock.
    No problems.

    Long answer it is probably not fair to compare Case Knives to SAKs.
    SAKs are unearthly out of this world great at build, consistency, and dambed satisfying walk and talk.

    Not to put Buck down . . . but, I just bought four five Buck folders and each one had things that made me wish Case had built them.

    The Bucks were all nicely sharp with well formed edges . . . but . . . they weren't Cases.
    I'm not saying Case is the end all be all, not by a lory load, but I think they are definitely worth what I pay for them.
    . . . let's see . . . of what I have close to hand :
    Four Case Knives,
    Five Bucks
    . . . and the other two need no introduction.
    All purchased in the last six months or is it eight ?
    oooooohhhhh . . . I thought I was cutting back this year :(
    I need to get a hobby to take my mind off my addiction.
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2019
  11. knarfeng

    knarfeng senex morosus moderator Staff Member Super Mod Moderator

    Jul 30, 2006
    Not to belabor the point, but when I was a young person a number of decades ago I had several knives with blades that wiggled. I didn't think anything of it and they worked for all my needs.

    But I'm an edjumacated knife knut now, so today I would likely send such a knife back.
    Lee D likes this.
  12. Wowbagger


    Sep 20, 2015
    OK . . . I'll belabor it for you :)
    My first large folder, a Buck 110, that I bought back in 1981 . . . you know . . . when they "really could make things " with old world pride and craftsman ship.
    Had / has a fair amount of play in the pivot.
    NEVER caused the slightest problem and I still have the user knife today.
    . . . unlike . . .
    that Buck 112, G-10, S30V . . . the pivot was so tight I could hardly get it open enough to lock and when I did I had to expend more effort than normal to get it to swing out of the locked position.
    By comparison my old 110 was a dream come true of nice pivot action. Honestly I never noticed that it had play until some one here a year or so ago started harping about play in the pivot of a 110 and I checked mine.
    Huh . . . it has significant play. :rolleyes:
    . . . ok moving on there must be something more terrible I can worry about than that . . . :)
    Zero "problem" here kids.

    To free up my 112 with the S30V I put the blade, open, in the aluminum jaws of one of my vises and torqued the pivot in the handle back and forth and side to side with a two fist grip (being conscious that if I got too western with it I might just break it off).
    It took a few goes at it to free it up some what. I still would like it to be a bit more free.
    It is only the last ten for fifteen degrees as it swings open. When it is more toward shut it is quite free.
    PS : never had to do that with a Case.
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2019
  13. Wowbagger


    Sep 20, 2015
    So I have to ask :
    Other than the best of the best at low priced but great quality SAKs . . .
    please name some knife makers of similar price $30 to $99.99 that have knives with consistently nil / no blade play. Traditional slip joints now . . .
    . . . go ahead . . . I dare you . . .

    PS : I decided to check the Case and Buck knives in my photo, since I hadn't paid any attention . . . the only Case that had any noticeable play was the Tear Drop other wise they all had the slightest, slightest "knock"; just a feeling more than any slop, if I got after them . . . the bucks were ever so slightly less play but what ever.
    No slop no foul.
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2019
    sodak likes this.
  14. Tuna

    Tuna Gold Member Gold Member

    Feb 17, 2019
    Touche. There are so-called flaws that don't bother me, but I can't get over blade play. In a perfect world no slip joints would have this issue, especially not knives from a company that has manufactured in the U.S. for so many years. Perhaps I am naive and my expectations are unrealistic.

    I guess my gripe is that I have older Case knives that have sturdy blades/ actions and I enjoy using them. I was let down when all my recent Case purchases had the one flaw that bothers me the most.

    I will give my knives that have blade play more use and try not to think about it.
    Lee D likes this.
  15. Ripcord 82

    Ripcord 82

    Feb 15, 2019
    Humm,I have at least a dozen Case knives and my opinion is,most of you that think that Case is lacking are full of crap. For the price you pay for them,they are a great knife.I have a few GEC's that have issues and I paid twice as much for them but I don't cry about it .Get a life!
  16. Obcessed


    Nov 14, 2018
    Great knife. They have been for many years. Do not like then, do not buy them. Some people would not be happy with a new shinney shovel.
  17. abcdef


    Oct 28, 2005
    I'm still waiting for the sawcut CV barlow I ordered from Case. The dealer keeps telling me it will come. Anybody had blade play with that model? As an aside, I've sworn off of any Buck product ever again after the 2018 Forum knife experience.
  18. Ripcord 82

    Ripcord 82

    Feb 15, 2019
    I have three of them and no blade play.That sawcut barlow is a very nice knife.I am sure you will love it.
  19. eisman

    eisman Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 9, 2009
    The Case/Bose knives are pretty darn good. The average knife, not so much. Sadly Case is building knives for "collectors" and unlike GEC (who does the same) QC takes a back seat to sales. Case is quickly being surpassed by stuff coming in from China.
    afishhunter likes this.
  20. Ripcord 82

    Ripcord 82

    Feb 15, 2019
    Oh God,not another one.

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