Editor’s Note: Welcome to The Best New Knives and EDC, a monthly column surfacing the latest knives, tools and any other item worth carrying in your pocket.
Fall is here, and we’re all digging into our closets in search of fleeces, down jackets and outerwear. Thankfully, if you’ve lost any of those items in the seasonal shuffle, every brand we know just revealed updated collections for fall and winter. Meanwhile, the companies making pocket knives and EDC tools don’t wait for the seasons to change — they roll out new products all year long.
Recently, Leatherman released a magnetic knife, SOG revealed a limited edition EDC folder, Tops mashed up two distinct styles and more.
The James Brand Duval
The James Brand’s latest folder, the Duval, expertly addresses the gentleman’s knife category. It isn’t a classification with strict guidelines, but most agree that a slim profile, high-quality materials and a blade under three inches are requisite. The Duval fits the bill: it has a 2.6-inch sheepsfoot blade made of Crucible S35VN steel and a titanium frame available with rosewood or Micarta handles. There’s also an even flashier Damascus steel blade option.
Leatherman Free K Series
The K Series is the final installment in Leatherman’s magnetic Free Collection. If a typical multi-tool emphasizes pliers, the K Series underscores the knife. The blade in question is 3.3 inches long, made of 420HC stainless steel, and comes in a sheepsfoot shape that’s available with a plain edge or partially serrated. The handle contains additional implements too: an awl, package opener, bottle opener, pry tool, screwdrivers and, in the slightly bigger K4, spring-action scissors.
SOG Limited-Edition Twitch II
Only recently did SOG start releasing knives with colorful handles. The company’s roots are very much in military Bowie-style fixed blades, but it has begun making a play for the EDC crowd. The pocketable Twitch II, with its drop-point, assisted-opening blade, isn’t entirely new, but these limited-edition versions with cobalt and olive handles are.
Tops Knives Poker
The Poker is an unlikely mash-up of two seemingly opposed styles. It’s at once a kiridashi, a Japanese utility blade made for artisan work like woodworking and leather crafting, and a karambit, which comes from martial arts and is denoted by the ring on the Poker’s handle. The knife has a short 2.5-inch blade and Micarta handles, weighs 2.7 ounces and comes complete with a Kydex sheath.
Opinel No. 8 Ellipse
Opinel’s No. 8 folding knife is a classic. That’s because its design is simple, with a wood handle and collar that locks the 3.35-inch blade in either an open or closed position. The limited-edition Ellipse doesn’t change those details, but it does enhance the design with an ebony handle that’s inlaid with a narrow, curved line of aluminum leaf. Opinel stamped the blade of each Ellipse with a number and its crowned hand mark for ultimate authenticity.
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