As tiny knives continue to carve out what’s now well-established territory in the everyday carry category, it’s become clear that small folding blades are markedly more common than their fixed-blade counterparts. It’s likely because a fixed-blade construction makes these knives stronger and more adept at tougher tasks like processing firewood and building shelters, a trait that diminishes as size scales down. Folders also have the advantage of folding, which allows them to get down to closed lengths as small as two inches.
Safety is also a concern — a small fixed-blade knife may actually be more accident-capable than a larger one, simply because grip and control are sacrificed for size. TOPS Knives’s new Little Bugger might be the exception though.
The Little Bugger has all the hallmarks of a well-built fixed-blade including a full-tang construction and micarta handles, but it was designer Matt Graham’s decision to use a Wharncliffe blade shape that makes it suitable for shrinking. Wharncliffe knives feature a flat edge and a spine that slopes from handle to point, thereby creating a shape that reduces the chances of accidental piercings while maintaining a practical cutting edge. Wharncliffes have historically been favored by woodworkers, farmers and sailors for its precision and utility.
The Little Bugger is 5.75 inches in length with a 2.38-inch blade made of 1095 stainless steel. The design leaves enough handle for a solid grip and enough blade for a range of tasks. It isn’t the smallest tiny knife we’ve seen recently, but given that it’s a fixed-blade and a Wharncliffe at that, it’d be a worthy daily-use knife for any EDC kit.