Why so many?

Nov 25, 1998
I was reading the thread about what folks carry on a daily basis and noted that a number carry multiple knives. Now I own any number of knives, but see the need to carry only one at a time. Would someone please explain why these people feel the need to carry so many? Please, I am not criticizing the practice, I would really like to hear why.

Walk in the Light,
I carry multiple tools because I use them for different things. Just like mom had her "paper scissors" and her "material scissors." It's always nice to have a backup should the primary fail or become unavailable.
I carry at least ("bare" minimum?)two folding and one fixed. Reason? One folder serrated, one straight. One for utility, one for "accuracy". The fixed blade for spreading peanut butter(easier to clean).
Seriously, it all depends on what you will be doing on a daily basis. DP and I are both active duty soldiers. We both have our opinions of what we need/don't need for everyday carry.

If you really want to understand something, try to change it.
Speaking only for myself, my primary interest in knives is defense. Two knives allows an individual the flexibility to double wield for special circumstances.
Maybe it's because I'm not very good at making decisions.

I have a belt and several pockets. Carrying two knives is almost as easy as carrying one. Add one more, and still no problem. Add yet another, and so on. Once you get up to four or so, might as well make it five.

For me, it's a matter of preparedness and pride. Perhaps more of the latter. There are many ways to win respect and admiration. I play bagpipes. I write poetry. I learn foreign languages. I carry several high quality knives and keep them really sharp. I do these things because it makes me seem (to myself and others) just a teeny-weenie bit better than I actually am.

Never carry a knife shorter than your schnoz.
I'm convinced this can become a disease or at least a syndrome. Far worse than deciding which tie to wear in the morning, the more quality knives one buys, the harder the decision becomes. Right now, my new BM 812SBT is the preferred choice. However, as soon as I take out my Axis Lock 710 or Spyderco Military, I end up with two knives or more. Please stop me before I buy again!
I carry two. Mostly a KFF for self-defense and a Native for general utility. I can see how some might carry much more given their profession (hope they don't fall in deep water without a preserver...

Also, if you've got a lot of good knives, it's probably tempting to rotate usage or carry more to feel good about and enjoy the purchases. (Just a thought.)

On the other hand, I like the consistency of using the same knifes and "no mindedness" that comes with that. To make it easier, I have gave or sold knives as new ones come in to minimize wanting to carry more or alternating them.

Fuller, lately Ive been carrying two...but only one knife! Spyderco DYAD, recommended by the lovely Danelle at Spyderco...Also at certain times only a WAVE...It has two blades also! I highly recommend the Dyad...Not for defense, but utility. Surpriseing how well it works for such a small knife!!
Now for defense I carry a Titan mj38 rocket launcher,with a verbal command hairpin trigger

When I first Got a pocket clip style knife, I wondered to myself "How did I live without this?"

When a friend gave me a Super Leatherman, I wondered the same thing...

ThenI needed a new knife, but when I was shopping for a new one, I found another that I thought was cute...then another...and I wondered how boring life must have been without them...then I bought a couple more.....then I won the Cetan....Now I wonder why God gave me this extreme lack of decisiveness......There was once a time that I carried only one small knife, but now I feel naked without at least two and the leatherman...I try to pacify myself by having other knives stashed in convienient places.

Sometimes I like to see what I can get away with. I admit that at one time I had four knives and my gun on me...but compared to some of the other guys around here, I am a lightweight.....there is an old thread on knifeforums that turned into a confessional of sorts, some of the guys had five knives and a firearm for daily carry (I might be embellishing a bit...but not too much)...as it sits, I like my Cetan for small things, My VG for big things, and my Leatherman for everything else..


"Will Dremel for Food!!"
"No, it's a Vaquero Grande in my pocket, but I am happy to see you!"
MegaFolderians Unite!!
Dyslexics Untie!

I generally carry a _minimum_ of 3 knives which gives me 5-6 blades. Why?

1. Primary work blade, gets used multiple times daily for any and everything including getting very dirty and/or contaminated. This blade is sharpened to a good coarse working edge, and is the blade that I use constantly on materials ranging from foam rubber or fiberglass insulation to masonite, and from stripping wire to trimming plastic, etc, etc.. More and more I'm favoring stout belt sheathed lockbacks for this blade. For this function I like a knife that I can access with either work or lab gloves, without putting my hand in my pockets. I also like the lock protection from dirt, gunk, dust etc. offered by a sheath for a blade that is gonna get used hard and put up wet.

2. Food blade. Gets used for absolutely nothing but cutting bagels or sandwiches, spreading cream cheese and peanut butter, cutting tomatoes etc. This is typically a clean, thin blade kept with a finer edge. I have at times, experimented with carrying a separate folding filet knife just for this function, but it seemed like a bit of a hassle.

3. Defensive backup one-hand-opening pocketclip blade. Gets used for nothing at all to guarantee a sharp edge if ever I should need it.

Numbers 1 & 2 have recently been on the same locking Browning 609, but I may go back to separate knives since I don't like having my food blade even in the same handle as my (potentially) biohazardous beater blade. I used to combine functions 2 & 3 and that makes sense as long as the lockwork is kept scrupulously clean for guaranteed opening/locking.

Numbers 4 and 5 are the blades on the SAK Tinkerer that's on my keychain.
To be honest, I don't use the main blade much, but the small one gets used for cleaning/triming fingernails and for digging out splinters. Blades 4 and 5 used to be on a mulitool that I carried, but I never could really find a multitool that served the functions that I really want, and so I decided that the space on my belt was better filled with a belt carried folder.

I've experimented a good bit with finding a suitable solution to functions 1,2, 3 and haven't yet found the perfect solution, but there's a lot to be said for carrying at minimum one belt carried stout knife and one pocketclip knife for speed, stealth and just generally as a backup.

The above gives an example for my routine, normal daily work carry. When I'm not constrained to folders to comply with social perceptions, then numbers 1,2,3 tend to be fixed blades.(Sometimes they are anyway.) Also, when the 'work' tends to be chopping things, (as will be the case later today), then look for #1 to be a machete complemented by a belt folder for utility.

I think what throws a lot of folks off is that they may have jobs that aren't really knife intensive. Personally, I don't see how anybody makes it through an average day without at least two blades sharpened to different angles, but obviously many folks do. Of course they often wind up borrowing blades from those of us who don't.


I've always gone for the two knife theory. I would carry a Buck 110 on my belt and an SAK in my pocket. The 110 would be used for the larger, rougher work and the SAK would be kept with a nice sharp, clean edge for food or other fine work. When multi-tools came out I tried to replace the 2 knives with the multi-tool. I felt inconvenienced by not having a real knife handy so went to the multi-tool and SAK. Nowdays I'm in the office most of the time but I still carry a Spyderco and a small SAK. I use the SAK for almost everything but I just don't feel right unless I also have a larger knife with me.


The two knife carry works for me, with one small change. I carry a small SAK which does general cutting (scissoring) duty and is cheap to replace when it wears out. I carry a larger folder because once in a while I need something larger. Also I feel uncomforatble without a larger knife - I hate those trips to/through the airport when I have to put my larger folder away for the trip!
The small change is that I carry a backup for the SAK on my keychain for just-in-case. So, I guess I'm either a 2 knife guy with backup or a 3 knife guy!
I carry a MINIMUM of 2 knives on me a day...a Minibuck on the keychain and a one-hander( by Spyderco, Cold Steel, Benchmade, or...). However, there have been times, like when I have gone to the courthouse, where I either only carried my little Victorinox Classic SAK in my pocket, and hid my little Spydie Ladybug in my wallet to get it through security. You're not supposed to carry ANY knife that locks.
If I can't at least carry a quality medium to large clip-carry one-hander, I almost feel as if I forget to zip up my fly!!
I usually only try to carry ONE one-hander on me at a time, in addition to the little pocket utility pieces. That way I fool myself into believing I'm only carrying "one" knife. Ah, the difficulties of a knife owner! Sometimes I take more time to decide which main blade to carry than which shirt/coat I'll be wearing!
I like to carry a nice pretty, friendly folder with a razor sharp blade for little chores around nervous people. I also like to carry a real knife, something pretty tactical like my Lab Rat or REKAT Pioneer. That's two. The tactical and nice usually both reside on my right side, so sometimes, just for the Boy Scout motto, I will put something left-hand friendly on the other side. That's three. Sometimes I can't decide between a couple different knives for any one of those three positions and wind up toting along a substitute. That's four. And sometimes I just like to bring along something in my gear bag that I like to admire but don't get to carry very often. That's five, six, seven.

That's enough.

Well Fuller, Steve pretty much sums up the same reasons why I carry so many knives. It started out as one knife and one multitool. Training with firearms, you see the need to have access with your "weak" hand.

Then, utility becomes an issue, as well as self-defense, as well as a small chopper and/or a food-prep blade...before you know it your pants create a 1.2 rating on the Richter scale everytime you have a bowel movement!

In all seriousness, being prepared is the real issue. If I remain continually concious of 5-6 (or in my case-12!) knives on my person, I can guarantee that I will aways have a knife when one is really needed.

But, if that doesn't explain it...than it's something genetic and out of my control, and therefore I'm hopeless