Kershaw Fraxion Knife Review

Kershaw Fraxion

Kershaw is a brand of Kai USA Ltd. Kai has been the leading producer of premier knives for over 100 years in Japan. Kai also produces razor blades, housewares, and other products in Japan. Kai tries to take an innovative approach to every aspect of their production chain, starting at research and development, moving to production, marketing, and even ends at the distribution functions.

Kershaw Fraxion
Kershaw Fraxion

Kershaw also has a commitment to innovation; pioneering many of the current technologies and advanced materials that are now the standard in the knife industry. To name a few of these, Kershaw has their Speed Safe assisted opening knives. One of their newer of these innovative technologies is the Blade Traders. These are the knives that actually have interchangeable blades. For a last example, Kershaw has recently released a Composite Blade technology, which is where they have combined two steels into one blade. This works to give knife users the best of both worlds. Kershaw can use a steel that has been known for its strength and use it on the spine of the blade, while using a steel that retains an edge well for that feature of the knife.
When Kershaw was founded in 1974, they had a founding mission. This was to make their users proud to own, carry, and use Kershaw knives. This means that Kershaw will only use the highest quality materials on their knives. Kershaw vows to choose appropriate, high quality materials and use intensive craftsmanship. Because of those commitments and their extremely tight tolerances and state of the art manufacturing techniques, your Kershaw product will truly last a lifetime.
Kershaw knows how fantastic their knives are and has said, “if this is your first Kershaw, be prepared. You just may be back for more. If it’s not your first Kershaw, welcome back.” Kershaw just released a new knife called the Fraxion. And because of Kershaw’s continuous commitment to innovation, the Fraxion is going to be just as great as the last ones.

The Blade:
The blade on this knife is made out of 8Cr13MoV steel. This is a Chinese steel that comes from the Cr steel series. There are a variety of different formulas in this series, and the 9Cr is the highest of quality. The 8Cr steel comes next and is an average steel. Most people recommend not purchasing a knife that has anything lower than a 6Cr steel, because it is going to be too soft. 8Cr13MoV steel is most commonly compared to AUS 8 steel. However, AUS 8 steel is superior when compared to this steel. 8Cr13MoV steel is a soft steel. Because of this, it doesn’t keep its edge for long periods of time. However, this steel is extremely easy to sharpen. It has good resistance to corrosion and rusting. The biggest benefits of this steel is the price. It is an excellent budget steel that will get the job done for you. However, this steel doesn’t excel at anything.
The finish on the Fraxion blade is a black oxide Black Wash finish. This finish gives you a well-worn look and it actually also enhances the corrosion resistant properties on the blade. The finish makes the steel of the blade an even black color.
The steel on this knife has been carved into a clip point shape. This shape, along with the drop point shape, is one of the most versatile blade shapes on the market. This is also one of the most popular blade shapes that is in use today. While this blade shape is most commonly found on the popular Bowie knife, you will also find it on many pocket and fixed blade knives. The shape of this blade is formed by having the back or unsharpened edge of the knife run straight from the handle and then stops about halfway up the knife. At this point, it turns and continues to the point of the knife. This section looks to be “cut out” or “clipped off”, which is where the shape gets its name. The point on this knife is lowered, which provides you with more control over your cuts. The difference between clip points and drop points is the thickness of the point. While the drop point shape provides you with a broader tip, the clip point is sharper and thinner, which provides you with excellent stabbing capabilities as well as less drag during insertion and faster withdrawal. Another thing that makes this blade shape such a versatile one is that it features a large belly that makes it perfect for slicing. The Fraxion’s clip point features a top swedge and a slight recurve to enhance your slicing capabilities. While the thin tip is an advantage, because of the capabilities that it provides you with, it is also one of the only drawbacks to this shape of knife. The thin tip is relatively narrow, so it is weak and does have the tendency to break fairly easily. When you carry a knife that features such a versatile blade shape, you will be prepared to take on any of the challenges that you encounter, whether they are expected or totally unexpected.

The Handle:
The handle on the Fraxion is made out of G-10 with carbon fiber overlays. G-10 is a grade of Garolite, which is a laminate composite made of fiberglass. This material has similar properties to carbon fiber, except that it can be made and produced at a fraction of the cost. To make this material, the manufacturer takes layers of fiberglass cloth and soaks them in resin, then compresses them and bakes them under pressure. The resulting material is a super tough, super hard, super lightweight, and super strong material. G-10 is actually considered to be the toughest of all the fiberglass resin laminates and is even stronger than Micarta. However, G-10 is a pretty brittle material. To add texture and style, the manufacturer can add checkering and other patterns. This provides the user with a solid, comfortable grip. Even though this material is cheaper than carbon fiber, it still has to be cut and machined, so it still is on the pricier side.
The overlays on this knife handle is made out of carbon fiber. This is when thin strands of carbon have been tightly woven together and then set in a resin. This material is super strong, yet still very lightweight. However, it is on the more expensive side. Because Kershaw only used carbon fiber for the overlays, they did keep the price down compared to if they had used the carbon fiber for the whole handle. Even though carbon fiber is a super strong material, it has the tendency to be brittle. This is because the fibers have all been woven in the same direction. When the strands get stressed in the other directions, carbon fiber tends to break or crack. The manufacturer of carbon fiber can add different patterns depending on how they choose to weave the fibers.
The obvious texturing on this handle comes from the carbon fiber overlays and not the G-10 base. This is an all-black handle, which gives the knife a very sleek look. This handle has more angles than curves, but is still comfortable to use for long periods of time. Instead of a finger groove, they added a finger guard, which is in line with the other angles on the handle.

The Pocket Clip:
The pocket clip and hardware is also black; because this is a completely black knife. This pocket clip is straight down. This clip has been drilled so that you can carry it on the left or right side, making this an ambidextrous friendly carry knife. However, you can only carry this knife tip up.

The Mechanism:
This is a manual opening knife that uses a flipper as the opening mechanism. When talking about how manual this knife is, Kershaw said, “There is no mechanical assists, such as Speed Safe, used to open the folding knife. It opens the classic, old school way.” The flipper mechanism is a small protrusion that juts out the back of the handle when the knife is closed. The flipper on this particular knife looks like a bike ramp; it is all angles, but it is a slow angle. The user pushes down on this protrusion, which then puts enough pressure on the blade to “flip” it open. This helps the blade move easily out of the handle.
The Fraxion also features an inset liner lock. This is a strip of stainless steel that has been riveted inside the knife’s handle. This enables Kershaw to create a slimmer, lighter knife, but still providing the strength and security of a locking liner.
The last mechanism that this knife sports is the KVT ball bearing opening system. This is a Kershaw mechanism. It helps to make one handed opening of your knife faster and easier, without even needing a mechanical assist. The Speed Safe assisted opening uses a torsion bar to help move the knife blade out of the handle, however KVT relies only on a ring of caged ball bearings that surround the knife’s pivot. This means that the ball bearings are secured within a ring that surrounds the pivot. It keeps the ball bearings in place, while allowing them to still rotate freely. When the user of the Fraxion pulls back on the built in flipper, the blade rotates out of the handle as the ball bearings roll into place.
When a Kershaw knife sports the KVT ball bearing system, it also has an additional detent. This is a design feature that helps hold the blade safely in the handle when the knife is closed. When you open the knife, you might notice a little bit of stickiness, just as you pull back on the flipper and before the blade rolls out of the handle on the KVT ball bearings. You just have to power through and add a little extra pressure on the flipper will be able to overcome the detent and the knife will open with ease.
Because this is a manual opening knife, there are no strict laws that surround this knife. But, even though this knife opens smoothly and efficiently, some people still prefer an automatic knife, because of the milliseconds that it saves you.

The Specs:
This knife is made in the United States of America. The blade on the Fraxion is 2.75 inches long. When the knife is opened, it measures in at 6.75 inches long. When this knife is closed, it measures in at 4 inches long. Because this knife has been designed to be so slim and sleek, the knife only weighs in at 1.9 ounces. In fact, it only weighs in at a “Fraxion” of the weight that similar knives have.

Conclusion:
Kershaw has been around for almost five decades now. In that time, they have pioneered many of the technologies and materials that are now considered the standard on the knife market. They have a commitment to innovation and want their users to be proud to carry and use a Kershaw knife. Because of this, they have a seamless manufacturing system and always use the appropriate high quality materials. When Kershaw builds a knife, they build it to last a lifetime. They know that if you take care of your knife, your knife will be able to take care of you, in almost any situation.
One of their newest knives is the Fraxion. This is a durable knife that is going to get the job done. The steel that they chose is easy to sharpen and can take on most tasks. Plus, it comes at an unbeatable price–grab yours right now here. The handle is made out of strong materials that are designed to take a heavy beating. This is a manual opening knife that will open smoothly and efficiently because of the KVT ball bearing opening mechanism that has been built into it. This is a great knife at an even better cost.

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