A Review of Five Killer Kershaw Knives.

Ken Onion Blur

Kershaw Knives began in Oregon when Pete Kershaw wanted to form his own company based on his own designs. Kershaw is a subsidiary of Kai USA Ltd. Throughout the years, Kershaw has collaborated with many custom knife makers which always result in excellent knives. Some collaborations have been with Ken Onion, Ernest Emerson, Grant and Gavin Hawk, and Rick Hinderer, along with many others. Kershaw knives are mainly focused on and designed to be pocket knives and sporting knives. They work to achieve knives for everyday use, camping, hunting, and fishing. And they have succeeded and excelled in each of these categories. Today I have compiled a list of the five best rated Kershaw knives.

 

The Ken Onion Blur:

Ken Onion Blur
Ken Onion Blur

To start out the list, I have chosen the Ken Onion Blur. This knife was born through one of Kershaw’s collaborations and the world is so glad that it was designed. The Blur part of the knife comes how the knife can open in a blur. The knife sports a thumb stud which is what allows the knife to be open single-handedly. Some people think it can be opened just as quickly and smoothly as a switchblade, but because it isn’t technically a switchblade, you don’t have to worry about the strict automatic knife laws. It can open so smoothly because of the Speed-Safe assisted opening mechanism.

The blade of the Blur is made out of Sandvik 14C28N stainless steel blade that has a Diamond like Coating covering it. Because of the coating, the blade has increased corrosion resistant properties and is a harder blade than it would be originally. The blade of the blade is 3 3/8 inches and is a combo blade. The original blade is black and serrated with a slightly recurved blade. However, with the increasing popularity of the Blur, Kershaw has released a few different versions of this knife.

The handle of this knife is made out of anodized aluminum that has a Trac-Tec material over the handle, which helps to provide an excellent no-slip grip. Overall the knife is 7.9 inches long.

Pros of the Ken Onion Blur:

  • This knife can easily be opened one handed.
  • It can be opened as smoothly as an automatic blade, but because it isn’t an automatic, you don’t have to worry about strict laws.
  • The Diamond Like Coating makes the blade much tougher.
  • The Diamond Like Coating gives the blade higher corrosion resistant properties.
  • This knife can be purchased in multiple different versions.
  • The Trac-Tec adds great grip to the handle.

Cons of the Ken Onion Blur:

  • The knife is very light and some people like a heftier knife for your everyday carry knife.

 

The Ken Onion Leek:

Ken Onion Leek
Ken Onion Leek

Just like the Ken Onion Blur, the Ken Onion Leek is one of Kershaw’s most popular knives. This was designed to be the perfect everyday carry knife. It was designed to be able to stand up to almost any everyday task that you put it up to. Just like the Blur, this knife has been made into a variety of different versions, so you can get exactly what you are looking for, while retaining the Leek’s excellent design.

The blade is 3 inches long made out of Sandvik 14C28N stainless steel, which is an excellent steel for an everyday carry knife. The steel on this blade keeps its edge for very long periods of time, especially compared to knives that are similar in price and design. Plus, this blade is very easy to sharpen when it needs to be sharpened. This knife comes out of the package razor sharp, so you won’t need to be worried about sharpening it for a while.

The handle on this knife is made from 410 stainless steel that has a bead blasted finish. Unfortunately, the handle on this knife doesn’t give you the greatest grip, so it won’t stand up to your heavier duty tasks. With the handle is a reversible pocket clip, making this knife an ambidextrous option.

The knife also has Kershaw’s SpeedSafe assisted opening system. This SpeedSafe system guarantees you a full opening when you want it. The framelock on this knife secures the knife when in open position. These two characteristics are both great safety features to have on an everyday carry knife. The overall length of the open knife is 7 inches and the closed length is 4 inches. This is a great size for an everyday carry knife because it isn’t too big, but it isn’t too small. This Ken Onion Leek is made in the USA.

Pros of the Ken Onion Leek:

  • Designed to be an everyday carry knife.
  • Made in the USA.
  • The blade’s steel keeps its edge for long periods of time.
  • The blade comes extremely sharp.
  • Has a reversible pocket clip, making it ambidextrous.
  • Has the SpeedSafe opening system.
  • Has a framelock locking system.
  • Perfect size for an everyday carry knife.

Cons of the Ken Onion Leek:

  • The stainless steel handle tends to be slippery.
  • The blade isn’t the highest quality of steel choices.

 

The Cryo

The Cryo
The Cryo

The Cryo knife was designed by Rick Hinderer and he had a stroke of genius when he created this knife. The Cryo is definitely at the top of the list of most popular Kershaw knives and it even won the “Best Buy of the Year” at the 2012 Blade Show.

The blade on this knife is 2.75 inches long made out of 8Cr13MoV stainless steel. This steel is from China, which tends to turn people away, but the steel does stand up to everyday tasks and is a good contender. The edge on this blade is held very well and is easy to sharpen. For the small size that it is, this knife is a tough little thing. It has a big belly, a hollow grind, and a small swedge that gives you quite a bit of heftiness behind it.

Just like the blade, the handle is also made out of stainless steel coated in titanium carbo-nitride. The handle does provide decent grip, but if you are used to a material like G10, this grip might disappoint you a little bit. When the knife is wet, you aren’t going to have good grip at all. But, the ergonomics on this handle are comfortable, making it an easy knife to use for long periods of time. On the handle there is a reversible pocket clip, but you can actually put the pocket clip in four different directions. You can change it for lefties or righties, and you can position it tip up or tip down. This is one of the most unique aspects of the knife, because it truly gives you whatever option is most comfortable. The handle and the pocket clip are both tarnish resistant because of the coating.

The knife boasts a lockbar stabilizer which helps the blade go exactly where it is supposed to go. Plus, there is a thumbstud which helps you control the opening. The overall length of this knife is 6.5 inches long, weighing in at 4.2 ounces. A big bonus of this knife is how cheap it is.

Pros of the Cryo:

  • This is a small, but beefy knife.
  • The handle is coated to resist tarnishing.
  • The pocket clip can be turned four different ways.
  • Super cheap option for your everyday carry knife.
  • Won “Best Buy of the Year” in 2012.
  • Holds an edge well and is easy to sharpen.

Cons of the Cryo:

  • The steel used for the blade isn’t the most quality steel.
  • The knife is good for people with bigger hands, so smaller hands might have problems with the grip.
  • The grip is sufficient, but does not excel. Especially when wet.

 

The Black Shallot:

The Black Shallot
The Black Shallot

The blade on this knife is 3.5 inches long made out of Sandvik 14C28N steel. This steel is resistant to corrosion and great for heavy duty use because it is very durable. This steel can also hold a crazy sharp edge. The steel is coated in a black tungsten Diamond Like Coating. The knife comes in a partially serrated blade, which makes it great for cutting or sawing through thicker materials. Or, if you would prefer a straight edge, it also comes in that option. The blade has a recurve, which adds a large belly to the forward end of the blade. This belly makes slicing and chopping a breeze. The recurve also helps with edge retention capacities because you generally need less edge to do the slicing or chopping. Because of all these characteristics of the blade, it makes it a fantastic option for your everyday carry knife.

The handle is also made out of a stainless steel with the same black coating. The handle features a frame lock mechanism that helps your blade stay in a locked position until it is released by the user. The handle also has a reversible pocket clip; you can keep it tip up or tip down.

The overall length of the knife is 7.9 inches while open and 4.4 inches while closed. This knife weighs 4.2 ounces. The knife features a SpeedSafe assisted opening with a thumbstud to make opening the knife one handed a breeze. This knife is made in the United States of America.

Pros of the Black Shallot:

  • The Diamond Like Coating on this knife makes the blade extremely durable.
  • Comes in either a straight edge or combo edge blade.
  • The recurve silhouette adds a belly to the knife that makes slicing and chopping a breeze.
  • This blade holds an edge for extremely long periods of time.
  • The handle is also stainless steel with the same DLC matching it to the blade.
  • Comes with a reversible pocket clip.
  • Made in the USA.

Cons of the Black Shallot:

  • The handle doesn’t provide the greatest grip that you can get.

 

The Amphibian:

The Amphibian
The Amphibian

This is the most unique knife that I have decided to put on this list. It isn’t an everyday carry knife; it is a dive knife. If you are a diver, you need to have a dive knife. It’s not a suggestion to have one, they aren’t for beginners, you need to have one. They have saved countless knives when getting into a sticky situation. And you shouldn’t just have any dive knife, you should have a great dive knife. The Amphibian is a great dive knife.

The knife is made out of a 420J2 stainless steel that is very corrosion resistant. This steel is the structure from the tip of the blade to the bottom of the pommel. If this were a solid knife, you would have to be worried about the weight of the knife, so Kershaw has designed this to be a skeleton handle. Inside of the handle is a co-polymer insert which will provide you with excellent grip. Something unique about the blade of this knife is that both edges are sharpened, one being a straight edge and the other being a partially serrated edge. This is to provide you with any edge you will need if getting into a sticky situation.

The knife comes with a sheath which is a durable Kydex. It sports a press-n-pull mechanism that secures the knife no matter how deep you are in the water. It also comes with an included depth-compensating leg straps that have adjustable quick-release buckles. Overall the knife is 7.75 inches with 3.75 inches being the blade. The weight of this knife is 3.2 ounces.

Pros of the Amphibian:

  • The steel is very resistant to corrosion.
  • Features a skeleton structure to keep the knife lighter.
  • The co-polymer insert provides you with excellent grip.
  • Comes with diver’s sheath and straps.
  • Sheath uses a press-n-pull mechanism to ensure a secure knife no matter your positon.
  • Double sided blade.

Cons of the Amphibian:

  • This is a reliable knife, but doesn’t have any special qualities to the knife.

 

Conclusion:

Kershaw will provide you with an excellent, reliable knife no matter which one you pick. They have created many phenomenal, ground breaking knives. These five knives are some of the most popular Kershaw sellers and they haven’t been the best-selling knives for no reason. You would definitely benefit from checking them out.

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