Choosing the Best Folding Knife: A High-Level Guide

Most short articles out there with “best folding knife” in the title are compilations of “the best folding knives ever made” or “the best pocket knives for 2022.”

Those are great for drumming up interest for new releases, but we don’t have space for that in this short piece.

Instead, this should help you determine what sort of pocket knife makes the Best Folding Knife for you based on use and style.

Size/Blade Length
Size is one of the most important factors in a folding knife. In some areas, it is not legal to carry folding knives with a locking blade over a certain length.

Size also impacts discretion. If you are looking for a new knife for EDC, a 12-ounce folding bowie is hardly a good choice. That’s more of a collectible.

For most users, a lighter discrete knife will perform better, but this needs to be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

Deployment Option
The vast majority of folding knives can be deployed with one hand via flippers, thumb studs, or thumb holes. Some are even assisted-opening or automatic.

However, there are still some knives with nail nicks that require two hands to open and close, so be aware of that.

Locking Mechanism
Lock style is generally a matter of preference, but just like deployment options, be aware that some locks cannot be easily disengaged with one hand.

For instance, liner locks, frame locks, and AXIS locks can also be easily engaged and disengaged for one-handed opening and closing.

By contrast, most lock backs and collar locks cannot be disengaged with one hand, making it a little less ergonomic for some users to use these.

Blade Profile
What are you going to use the knife for? The blade profile should match the intended use.

For instance, some utility knives and sailing knives have blunted points to decrease the chances of accidental punctures.

Skinning knives usually have a wide, swept belly and a trailing point that makes it easy to perform broad, sweeping slices thanks to the long cutting edge.

Clip point blades are better for piercing, whereas drop point blades have more structural integrity near the tip – but these are just two styles out of many.

Will you be preparing food, opening packaging, cleaning fish, or carving wood? Make sure the blade profile of the knife matches what you’re going to do with it.

Blade Steel
Without getting too far into blade chemistry, be aware of the fact that there are (very broadly) two classes of knife steel: corrosion-resistant (stainless) and high-carbon, which typically will rust.

Stainless blades tend to be better in environments wherein they will encounter corrosive elements, such as around salt water.

However, by contrast, some high-carbon, high-toughness blades are better for edge retention and overall durability, albeit they are less suitable for use in corrosive environments.

Handle Materials
The handle materials paired with the knife will also affect quality. If you’re going to use your knife in harsh environments, opt for something synthetic like G10, GFN, or Micarta. These are abrasion, wear, and corrosion resistant, not to mentioned very strong.

By contrast, natural materials, like wood, bone, or horn, though they look nice, can be a bit harder to care for.

Method of Carry
Some people carry their knives free-floating in a pocket. However, most folding knives are equipped with pocket clips that make for easier modes of carry.

Also, some pocket clips are reversible and allow for both tip-up and tip-down carry, so choose the one that’s best for you.

That About Does It: Now Go Get the Best Folding Knife at White Mountain Knives
Ready to find the best folding knife for you? Visit White Mountain Knives online at They carry a wide range of folding and fixed blades (as well as tools and survival gear) from the top brands in the industry, including but not limited to Buck, Gerber, Zero Tolerance, Spyderco, Kershaw, and Victorinox Swiss Army Knives.

Take a look through their collection and bring home what appeals best to you today.

For More information about Cold Steel Tanto Knife and Zero Tolerance Pocket Knife Please Visit: White Mountain Knives.

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