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Knives


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Knives / Multipliers

A knife is a tool no outdoors man should leave behind. Multi-tool knives are especially useful for repairing gear, cooking, first aid and pulling out cactus thorns. A good backpacking multi-tool features include knife, pliers, saw, screw driver, scissors and can openers.
Popular Knives / Multipliers (View all Knives / Multipliers)
Leatherman Freestyle
$22.95 - 48.99
Leatherman Skeletool
$32.90 - 104.99

Blade Material
Knife blades can be manufactured from a variety of materials, each of which has advantages and disadvantages.
Carbon steel, an alloy of iron and carbon, can be very sharp, hold its edge well, and remain easy to sharpen, but is vulnerable to rust and stains.
Stainless steel is an alloy of iron, chromium, possibly nickel, and molybdenum, with only a small amount of carbon. It is not able to take quite as sharp an edge as carbon steel, but is highly resistant to corrosion.
High carbon stainless steel is stainless steel with a higher amount of carbon, intended to combine the best attributes of carbon steel and stainless steel. High carbon stainless steel blades do not discolor or stain, and maintain a sharp edge.
Laminate blades use multiple metals to create a layered sandwich, combining the attributes of both. For example, a harder, more brittle steel may be sandwiched between an outer layer of softer, tougher, stainless steel to reduce vulnerability to corrosion. In this case, however, the part most affected by corrosion, the edge, is still vulnerable.
Pattern-welding is similar to laminate construction. Layers of different steel types are welded together, but then the stock is manipulated to create patterns in the steel.
Titanium is metal that is lighter, more wear resistant, and more flexible than steel. Although less hard and unable to take as sharp an edge, carbides in the titanium alloy allow them to be heat-treated to a sufficient hardness.
Ceramic blades are incredibly hard, lightweight blades; so hard that they will maintain a sharp edge for months or years with no maintenance at all. They are immune to corrosion, but can only be sharpened on silicon carbide sandpaper and some grinding wheels.

Folding blade features
A folding knife connects the blade to the handle through a pivot, allowing the blade to fold into the handle. To prevent injury to the user through the blade accidentally closing on the user's hand, folding knives typically have a locking mechanism. Different locking mechanisms are favored by various individuals for reasons such as perceived strength (lock safety), legality, and ease of use. Popular locking mechanisms include:


Another prominent feature on many folding knives is the opening mechanism. Traditional pocket knives and Swiss Army Knives commonly employ the nail nick, while modern folding knives more often use a stud, hole, disk, or flipper located on the blade, all which have the benefit of allowing the user to open the knife with one hand.

Increasingly common are assisted opening knives which use springs to propel the blade once the user has moved it past a certain angle. These differ from automatic or switchblade knives in that the blade is not released by means of a button or catch on the handle; rather, the blade itself is the actuator. Most assisted openers use flippers as their opening mechanism. Assisted opening knives can be as fast or faster than automatic knives to deploy.

Handle Material
The handles of knives can be made from a number of different materials, each of which has advantages and disadvantages. Handles are produced in a wide variety of shapes and styles. Handles are often textured to enhance grip.

Multi-tool
A multi-tool is a portable, versatile hand tool that combines several individual tool functions in a single grip or in the shape of a credit card. Good backpacker features include knife, pliers, saw, screw driver, scissors and can openers.
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