Knives vs Flashlights

Random Dan

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Jun 30, 2012
Messages
1,371
Like many here, I am an enthusiast of nice knives and nice flashlights. I have enough of both that I certainly don't "need" anymore, but I still enjoy reading about, buying, and testing new ones.

I go back and forth between which hobby I focus on collecting. And by collecting I don't mean just putting things on shelves. I put everything to use (or sell it) but I still consider it to be collecting since I own more than I need. Anywho each one has its advantages and disadvantages as a hobby.

Pros of flashlights:
Fun LEGO and modding opportunities
Easier to take places since nobody restricts flahslights
Require less maintainence than carbon steel or natural handled knives. Roughly similar to stainless/synthetic knives though
Less likely to seem "scary" to people
People love you when the power goes out

Pros of knives:
More future-proof. A good knife will never become obsolete.
Knives have been around longer so there's more history to the design patterns
Lots of custom makers out there so it is easier to find one-off unique pieces or have something made to your specifications ($$$ though)
More international. There are custom knifemakers all over the world and many countries have their own unique style of blades.
Larger collecting community

What do y'all think?
 

LedTed

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Mar 7, 2010
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Britannia
I think you have listed some good observations.

Though I have been asked more than once why I carry either a knife or flashlight, no one has been even startled by my use of a flashlight.
 

StagMoose

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Apr 19, 2020
Messages
233
Great observations. There are likely other similar crossover hobbies as well.

Like you I don’t consider myself a “collector” per se because I use everything. Even if it is a sprint run or custom knife . Certainly have more than I need of either flashlights or knives.

I think you become a collector when you have more than a couple of anything and people seemed surprised by what they cost.

No one is surprised if you whip out a Swiss Army knife. But you whip out something else, say like a sprint run Spyderco in M4 steel, and someone says, “ oh that’s interesting...” and then they want to know “what something like that costs.” Then they think you are crazy for not just buying a cheap folder from Home Depot like they did.

Certainly knives have a longer history and are one of the oldest tools. However flashlights are one of the greatest more modern inventions. Kinda like a cigarette lighter.

Take something everyone experiences and needs, and package it into a small portable self-contained unit to the point it is ubiquitous.

Both are great and I’m rambling.

Cheers!
 

Sos24

Enlightened
Joined
Jan 18, 2018
Messages
508
I think you have listed some good observations.

Though I have been asked more than once why I carry either a knife or flashlight, no one has been even startled by my use of a flashlight.

It is so strange how many people have asked why I carry a knife or a flashlight, but then some of those same people have asked to borrow one or the other when they needed one.

I have had someone startled by my flashlight but it was intentional. One of my nephews thought it would be funny to shine a cheap old flashlight directly at me. I showed him how mine was brighter than his, but was kind enough not to shine it at him.
 

ChrisGarrett

Flashlight Enthusiast
Joined
Feb 2, 2012
Messages
5,718
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Miami, Florida
I've got modest collections of interesting knives and flashlights, but I view them more as tools, than perhaps 'works of art,' which many are.

SwissChamp on my belt and whatever lipstick light I've been neglecting.

Chris
 

The Hawk

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Apr 20, 2009
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Location
Kentucky
I think you are correct in your observations. I too, enjoy knives and flashlights. I plan on continuing to collect both, as they provide me happiness and are useful.
 

Jean-Luc Descarte

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Jul 29, 2020
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716
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Where the sun sets fast
I love torches, but I'm blasé about knives. I only have one simple short-bladed (~6cm) Luatek slipjoint that even lost its pocket clip, no idea what metal it is made of. It is a good tool and I take good care of it (including keeping it sharp but not overly so like stropping) but nothing anywhere near my fascination for portable electric lighting.
 

CHNeal

Enlightened
Joined
Nov 21, 2019
Messages
250
I really do not consider myself a collector as much as being thorough in my tool availability. With that said flashlights and knives just seem to go together.
If I were to choose a favorite as a tool it would be the knife. There is little that can be substituted when you need a good sharp knife.
If I choose based on interest and entertainment the flashlight is hands down the winner for me yet is still a necessary tool in my life/world.

Now that does not mean I am above buying a knife just because its freaking cool but it still needs to be able to serve its intended roll as a carry-able tool or it goes on the block. Where as I do have a couple of lights that I have no use case to own but will keep just because they are cool..

I think I just confused myself…
 

Ponti33602

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Jan 10, 2020
Messages
2
Don’t forget pens too. ;) These are Zirc Fellhoelters and the first two have SC bits and pieces.
 

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Olumin

Flashlight Enthusiast
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Sep 20, 2020
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"...that famous Texas part of Hamburg"
I like knifes and own a handful nice ones but in our modern world of perforated packaging I use my torch much more often then a pocketknife. I carry a knife daily & actually use it perhaps 2-3 times a week on average vs. dozens of times a day for my light. Things like knifes, torches, pens etc. tend to go hand-in-hand in the gear community. Chances are if someones carries a nice knife they're gonna carry a nice light too.
 

Coolwhite

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Oct 3, 2021
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Johannesburg
My knife preferences are for Victorinox alox, have a pioneer, cadet and Minichamp, all in silver.
They do the job, but I much prefer my lights, don't know why, will rather spend cash on lights ( quality over quantity for sure), so I only buy surefire, Makoff, Elzetta nowadays.
Gave away a Kershaw the other day and have a Spyderco Tenacious that is being given to a mate real soon, not really into knives, other than the Victorinox that is in the pocket daily.
 

caelyx

Newly Enlightened
Joined
May 29, 2013
Messages
120
Don’t forget pens too. ;)
You beat me to it. Not to mention the whole EDC community that's spun up around *all* of those things, plus everything in the pockets. That's been interesting to watch.
But whatever you do, don't get into watches. 😂
 

Modernflame

Flashlight Enthusiast
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Jan 27, 2017
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4,383
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Dirty Dirty South
I love knives and flashlights, but I can't be monogamous with either. My affections drift between them and are, indeed, divided. For the last roughly two years, I've been focused on knives and sharpening, but I also just bought my first flashlight in a good long time. Looking forward to receiving it next week!
 

parang

Newly Enlightened
Joined
Dec 28, 2020
Messages
164
I also have enough good pens, great flashlights, a SAK for every use case, beautiful knives. I even started making leather knife sheaths, wallets and bags for my EDC needs.

Knives and flashlights coexist peacefully in my leather pocket organizers and I never had a problem to afford satisfying levels of quality in standard production models.

OTOH it takes forever to build a good watch collection, it is better to stick with entry level Seiko 5s and quartz Citizens.
 

bykfixer

Flashaholic
Joined
Aug 9, 2015
Messages
19,573
Location
John 3:16
To me a flashlight, a knife, a pen, a watch and coffee cup are tools like ratchets and screw drivers. I tossed in coffee cups because I have a variety of purposed coffee cups too.

For some reason I have a lot more flashlights than knives or pens. And way more than watches or coffee cups.
 
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