EDC knife: never leave home without it

I was helping a friend pull an engine from the local junk yard for his truck this weekend.  This typically means that you’re going to have to cut a couple hoses and a belt or two.  It was also useful to push the valve to check to see if the A/C system was still pressurized.  Of the 4 of us there (which included an actually trained mechanic and a guy best described as a “maker”), I was the only one there with a knife at hand.  I believe my buddy mentioned something about having some cutters somewhere in his tool bag, but I had the cutting job done before he could reach for it.

It always amazes me at the number of folks that don’t carry a pocket knife with them.  Whether it be a Victorinox Swiss Army knife, or something more sturdy and single purpose, like my Spyderco Endura.

I’m a big believer that, unless you’re in a location where carrying such things are barred by law, you should always have a good EDC knife on you.  I know some people love carrying specialized fighting knives like the Kabar TDI (I believe that’s what Erin likes to carry), which is great, but I tend to think of EDC knives as more multipurpose than that.

My Endura has been used for everything from the example above, to opening boxes, to cutting up fruit, to cutting and serving a cake.  While I haven’t been required to use it in self-defense, it is a favorite of the martial artists I know and I’m confident that it will stand up to that task.

If you don’t already have and carry one, it’s one of the most useful things that you could possibly carry in your pocket.  While you can spend big bucks on a Benchmade, high end Cold Steel, or Spyderco blades (hey, $70 is a lot to some folks.  I know I resisted dropping that money on a knife), you can also get perfectly good blades for less (I’d recommend CRKT or Kershaw).  I’d also highly recommend a locking blade, and, if you’re going to carry it in your pocket, you probably don’t want a blade over 4 inches.

8 comments to EDC knife: never leave home without it

  • If you’re going with an assisted-opening knife, I would also suggest one with a safety. Having a knife spring open in your pocket unexpectedly is NOT a fun thing to experience.

    I know CRKT offers knives with that feature. I assume other manufacturers do as well.

  • Overload in CO

    Jake,
    an assisted opening knife shouldn’t open in your pocket as the blade is against the back of your pocket if you’re carrying it tip up. If you have it tip down, then the sharp part of the blade is away from a inserting hand.

  • Overload: It may depend somewhat on the fit of your pants and how tight or loose the pockets are, but having nearly cut myself on a knife that opened in my pocket (right front pocket, tip down) I’ll have to disagree.

    Fortunately, while I did feel the edge, my thumb wasn’t quite hitting it right to actually get cut before I realized what had happened and stopped. It’s also a good thing I was sitting down when it happened. Considering the way it opened and where I sat down, I think it would have been pretty ugly if it had opened before I sat down.

  • oddball

    Oddly enough, I believe the CRKTs that I have with assisted opening do not have a safety catch on them. My first assisted opener was a Kershaw Leek, which does. After carrying it for a while, I tightened the safety to lock it into the open position, and never had an issue. Of course, that’s in large part because of the way I carried it in my pocket, which made it impossible to open in my pocket. Clearly, your mileage may vary.

    Of course, I keep going back to my Endura as my EDC, which doesn’t have that feature.

  • DOD

    Have carried a pocket knife since I was 8. We used to play mumbly-peg in the school yard
    at lunch or recess. Try that today! (mumbly -peg is a game where you drop or flip the open knife off the tip of your finger, trying to get it to stick in the ground.) I too like the CRKT.

  • I’ve carried a knife since I was a small child. Knives weren’t allowed in school back then, but they’d just confiscate them and only surrender them to a parent who came in after school instead of calling a lock down and bringing in a SWAT team like they might do today. It always cracks me up when I whip out my blade for whatever purpose and a bystander asks, “why are you carrying a knife?” Um… The fact that I’m using it right now is a great example of why I carry a knife. The better question is why aren’t you carrying a knife?

  • Firehand

    Ah, the knife; the most person and generally-useful of tools. And far too many people freak when they find out you have one.

    Including when you’re assisting them with opening something because they have not a damn thing that will cut…

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