Which Knife for New EDC Folder?

BigBluefish

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Having picked up a Sage 1 for use as my EDC during working hours (with the wire clip and deep carry, it vanishes in the pocket of my dress slacks), I'm now looking for something to carry in the same manner (right hand, front pocket) for casual wear (mostly jeans.)

I'm looking to spend about $125, give or take a few bucks.

I've been carrying a Spyderco Persistence for the last year or so, but am looking to "upgrade" to something a bit nicer, and keep the Persistence as a back-up or spare.

I'm willing to carry a slightly larger, longer bladed knife than the Sage in my off-hours, but still want something relatively low-profile, for light chores, but that could also provide some level of "more serious" service in a SHTF situation. I've never had to use a knife in this kind of scenario and would try to keep it that way, of course, but things don't always work out the way we hope they will.

By "slightly larger" I mean something larger than the Sage, but smaller than my Spyderco Military. Nice knife, which I think will work well for camping and field-dressing deer, but it's way too big for EDC, mostly due to the huge scales, but even the blade length is about 1/2 too much for me. So I'm looking for something with a 3 - 3 1/2" blade with a grip that has enough to hold onto, but isn't overly large, like the Military's. A choil, thumb ramp, some strategically placed jimping, or other feature to prevent my hand sliding up the blade would also be a plus. Deep carry pocket clip is preferred, but the standard Spyderco clip or similar is OK, too. I'd like to avoid one of those clips that "catches" on the edges of things as you walk by, or if you lean on them.

I basically use an EDC knife for opening the occasional box or package, slicing fruit, bread & cheese, maybe cutting some rope or those heavy plastic ties now and then. The most serious thing I can imagine it might be needed for would be to cut a seatbelt in an auto accident. (And doesn't everyone carry a knife for just this purpose? I've mentioned it to a few friends, and they think I'm nuts. Except for the cops and EMT types, who seem surprised anyone but them thinks about this sort of thing.)

So, I've looked around, done some research, handled a few knives, and I'm intersted in, but haven't been able to decide between, the following:

Spyderco Sage III
Syyderco Caly 3
Spyderco Para Military 2
Benchmade 745 Mini Deja Voo (if I can find one)
Benchamde 890 Torrent Nitrous, and
Mcusta Basic Model, probably with the damascus blade

I like the blade style, deep carry wire clip, and ergonomics of the Sage 1, so am thinking about the Sage III. The blue scales wouuld be less likely to scream "knife" and look very non-threating. I also like the color. I'm also a bit more confident in the strength of the lock on the III over the liner lock on the I, if things should get unpleasant.

The Caly 3 also looks promising, but I have never actually handled one, so don't know how it would feel in my hand. It has that nice deep carry low profile wire clip, and lock-back locking mechanism, which is a plus. But it's a bit over my $125 price-point, unless there is a version out there with, say, G10 instead of carbon fiber scales, and S30V or 154CM instead of that ZDP-189 blade steel.

The ParaMilitary 2 also looks good, and I like the blade style. I've heard good things about the strength of the compression lock. Only proble, is without the deep-cary clip, it won't ride so low in my pocket. That's not deal-breaker, though.

I'm kind of on the fence on the Benchmade 745. I've handled a few, and sometimes I like them, and then sometimes feel they're a bit flimsy. I know they aren't that's just how they feel in my hand.So I've been putting off making a decision on this knife, which has kind of brought me to where I am now. I like the blade profile, but have heard some concerns about the strength of the liner-lock. I also noticed this model has been discontinued, so I don't know if that's a good sign (more desireable in the future for resale if it doesn't work out for me) or a bad sign (Benchmade realized it wasn't so great a knife, and dropped it.)

As for the Benchmade 890, my only concern - Is it too big? And, I'm not sure if I'd like the asssited opening. The Nitrous assist isn't something I'd look for, but I don't know as it should be something to put me off. My only real concern would be it opening in my pocket. The blade profile seems pretty good for everyday tasks. It's also a nice-looking knife, IMO.

Finally, and another really nice looking knife, IMO is the Mcusta Basic Model. I think I'd go for the damascus VG-10 over the VG-10, just for the appearance. I'm not sure how useful the blade profile will be. But then again, it isn't going to see any heavy use, so it would probably work just fine. The deep cary clip is a plus. I've never handeld one, so I don't know how it would feel.

Any thoughts you guys could offer are appreciated.
 

Sparky's Magic

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If you ever decide that you would like to go the extra yards, have Terry Davis custom build you one: Your specs. his skills. Yes they cost heaps, they are the 'best of the best', guaranteed for life and some magnificent materials. He will even resharpen your knife, as required.
I could just afford a small Stockman 2nd. hand! It is the most beautiful knife I have ever handled and the stag scales exquisite.:devil:
 
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BigBluefish

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If you ever decide that you would like to go the extra yards, have Terry Davis custom build you one: Your specs. his skills. Yes they cost heaps, they are the 'best of the best', guaranteed for life and some magnificent materials. He will even resharpen your knife, as required.
I could just afford a small Stockman 2nd. hand! It is the most beautiful knife I have ever handled and the stag scales exquisite.:devil:

I already collect guns. Pleeeeeaaaaassssseeee don't convince me to drop outrageous amounts of money on custom knives! My wife is already going to blow a gasket when she sees how much the Edge Pro Apex I've decided I need to put some decent edges on all our knives is going to cost.
 

Meganoggin

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Para Military 2 is great and if you already have a Millie it is about 2/3 of the size. Try one out, I think you will love it.
 

BigBluefish

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Well, i got a chance to handle the Benchmade 890 at the local Cabela's yesterday. I was a bit disappointed. It had a bit of lateral blade-play in the locked position, and the assisted opening didn't really do it for me. Unlike the little Kershaw's, which make me think I'm going to slice the end of a finger off everytime I open them, this one didn't bother me in that way, but it seemed too easy to open, in that it might open in the pocket if bumped or brushed. Just seemed a little too sensitive to me. The knife didn't have as substantial a feel as I thought it would either, though it did sit in the hand nicely. It was the display model, so maybe that accounts for the blade-play, but I was a bit underwhelmed, overall.

I've also been wonering about the Spderco Manix 2. Perhaps a bit more of a tank of a knife than is best for EDC, but then again, the only gripe I have with my Military is the overal length of both the handle and blade, and teh Manix 2 is consierably shorter.
 

BigBluefish

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How about the ZT 0350?

That's an interesting knife, but I think a bit heavy for my needs.

I was seriously contemplating grabbing one of the last Moonglow Manix 2s from the EDC forum, but the lack of a deep carry clip, the smooth scales, and the EDC forum logo billboard on the blade put me off. Not that I don't like the EDC Forum - I do. But I don't want it on my knife! This is otherwise a great looking knife, with a full flat ground blade of S30V and lightened liners.

Spyderco should make the Sage IV with textured Moonglow scales. Beats me what lockign mechanism they'll use.

So, I seem to have narrowed my choices to the Sage III or the ParaMilitary 2.

Question though: How about the Spyderco SuperLeaf???? I guess this isn't so common, but looks like it will meet my needs. Does anyone have any experience with this knife?
 

BigBluefish

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At the risk of talking to to myself, I'll toss the Emerson A100 or Mini A100 into the mix. The only thing I'm not thrilled with on this knife is the clip, but that can come off. Sometimes, it makes sense NOT to have a clip and adversitse I'm carrying a folder, and both of these knives look as though they would slip into the front pocket of my jeans quite comfortably.

I guess I could do the same with the ParaMilitary 2... but I'm starting to wonder if I shoudl give one Mr. Emerson's knives a try.

Does anyone have any experience with either of these Emerson knives?
 

Dnva

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I personally carry the Caly 3 as an edc for work with dress slacks. It has a much slimmer profile then the sage and pretty much disappears in your pocket. You may want to look at the Caly 3.5, it is a larger version. I haven't held one yet but it looks promising. I also have the Sage 2 with the Ti handle and frame lock which I carry when in more casual clothes. I love this knife and if you like the sage 1 you may want to consider it. The Sage 3 in intriguing but i haven't pulled the trigger on it yet.

I also have a Manix 2 which I use as a heavier use work knife. I really like it, but for me it is just a tad bit large and and obvious as an EDC in my situation. Definitely the folder I take when I am going camping to go with my Fixed blade. I think compared to the paramilitary the Manix has a wider profile but i really prefer the handle configuration with the choil and the aggressive jimping on the top of the handle and blade.
I hope this helps.
 

Blades

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What about the Spyderco JD Smith? Have you looked at it?
 

jbh5277

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BigBluefish;3611872 The [B said:
ParaMilitary 2[/B] also looks good, and I like the blade style. I've heard good things about the strength of the compression lock. Only proble, is without the deep-cary clip, it won't ride so low in my pocket. That's not deal-breaker, though.

paramilitary 2 is an awesome knife. handled several and it will most likely be my next spydie. you can also get a low rider clip from STR over at BladeForums.
 

BigBluefish

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Well, I picked up an Emerson Mini A100, and it seems to be just the ticket, without the clip, for carry in my front pocket, in jeans - EXCEPT: I'm having a tough time coming to terms with that thumb disk. There is only a small relief cut in the scale, and I have large hands, and me and the thumb disk aren't getting on too well, yet. In fact, my thumb freakin' hurts! It might just take a bit of getting used to, and breaking-in the action, which seems a bit rough, which I kind of expected, from what I've read about Emersons. I'm very happy with it otherwise.

I also picked up a Mcusta Basic model, which, unfortunately, isn't doing it for me. Nice knife, actually, and I love the blade shape, about which I was unsure, and the Mcusta take on damascus, but the handle and clip don't really suit me. I got this one thinking it would be more of a "gentlemen's knife" but ... eh, it just doesn't work for me, ergonomically. Check the marketplace soon.... :)

To reply to other posters, I have considered the Caly 3.5, and it seems to meet my requirements, so I may give that a try. I also had the chance to see and handle the Spyderco JD Smith. This was the flat ground version with the gray/green G10 scales. I thought it was quite nice, but the handle didn't quite suit me, or so I thought at the time. Although afterwards, I realized that the price asked for it was a steal...so I maybe should have tried it! I'm thnking of heading back to the store and seeing if it's still there...

So I might be heading back to the ParaMilitary II. If there is indeed a deep cary clip available, that would be great.
 

Leif24

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How about my favorite Benchmade's - 470 Emissary - 707 Sequel - 940 Osborne, all 3 have aluminum handles, 470 & 707 3in blades and 940 3.5 in blade, check them out I'm sure you would be happy with one of these, price range $125-$150.
 

tricker

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Emerson is a "not quite there" brand, and they will stay that way as they don't improve any of their knifes with current design standards....but they do increase their price


Spyderco is they way to go, I love my para 2 and Sal has always been into the constant improvement of his designs

A delica 4 is also a GREAT knife
 

cave dave

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The Caly 3 is a smaller knife on ever dimension than the Sage, except for blade length which is the same. You wouldn't be getting a bigger knife if you went that route. I prefer the Caly 3.5 over the Sage becouse the handle is smaller and thinner than the Sage yet you gain a half inch of blade.

However if you have large hands as you mentioned the Paramilitary might be the way to go, it has a fairly large handle for the blade length. Something some complain about and other people love.
 

BigBluefish

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I've come to terms with the Mini A100. Just a good many repetitions of opening and closing have smoothed it out. I've also realized that shifting my thumb position on the stud has helped, and now opening is no problem at all. A nice rugged little knife. And it is little, just a bit too small. I almost went and got a full sized A100, but thought that might be Emerson overkill at the moment, since I haven't lived with the Mini long enough to really see how I feel about it, and how well it suits me. Should be good for summer carry is shorts.

While I'm going to sell my MCusta Basic Model, I picked up a MCusta Tactility (I sure can't afford both!) and am much happier with it. While the blade is just a bit longer, the handle is slimmer, and the clip is a bit better, IMHO, and it rides comfortably in khaki's and jeans. Not as low-profile a clip as the Sage's, but it rides even lower and doesn't scream KNIFE! with an inch or so of scales and frame sticking out of the top of my pocket. Could be a pen...

The Tactility actually seems lighter than the Basic. The Basic was chunkier than I expected, the Tactiliy was slimmer. While not a small knife, I think the blade is 3.75", it is more of a "gentlemen's knife" than a moderate use folder like the ParaMilitary 2. Frankly, I think my Sage may be sturdier. But, the Tactility (I have the version with the damascus blade, thumb stud, and quince wood scales) fits my hand very well, locks up tight, is very smooth to open and close, is scary sharp, and looks pretty good, too. My initial impression is this is a keeper.

And, then I went and splurged and bought an Al Mar Eagle Talon because...I've seen that knife for years and wanted one. This is the bolstered model with micarta scales. D#&@, it is nice! It's not small, and it's heavy, but it's just length-legal in my jurisdiction, feels great in the hand, is smooth and solid and slips nicely into the front pocket of my jeans. Except, of course. that stud and the edge of the blade where it locks is sharp and will eat my pockets. But, Al Mar gives you this little leather pocket sheath, which saves the pocket but: 1. you can't take the knife from the pocket without the sheath; and 2. you can't remove the knife from it with one hand. I shouldn't gripe, but c'mon: If you can make such a nice knife, offer it with a decent sheath! I'd been afraid of that. So, now I am on the hunt for someone who can make a leather pocket sheath/holster to carry the knife tip-up so it can be drawn with one hand. (I'm also thinking that a pocket pistol magazine holster, for a single stack 9mm or .380 might work just fine. So I'll dig through one of boxes o' gun stuff and see if I have one before I go drop another forty of fifty bucks.

Kind of like flashlights, these knives, aren't they? You think one or two or three will cover all your needs, and then....
 
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