Kershaw knives was started in Portland, Oregon in 1974 when knife salesman Pete Kershaw left Gerber Legendary Blades to form his own cutlery company based on his own designs. Early manufacturing was primarily done in Japan. In 1977, Kershaw became a wholly owned subsidiary of the KAI Group. In 1997 the US production facility was opened in Wilsonville, Oregon. Due to an expanding market, the facilities were moved to a larger production site in 2003.
For over 100 years, Kai has been Japan’s premier blade producer. Kai takes an innovative approach to product development based on the close coordination of research and development, production, marketing, and distribution functions.
Kershaw Knives designs and manufactures a wide range of knives, including pocket knives, sporting knives, and kitchen cutlery. Kershaw had a founding mission to design and manufacture tools that knife users would be proud to own, carry, and use. This has meant that every Kershaw must be of the highest quality. Whether it’s a hardworking pocket knife, a hunting knife, or a special collectors’ edition, Kershaw always chooses appropriate, high-quality materials and is dedicated to intensive craftsmanship. Along with extremely tight tolerances and state-of-the-art manufacturing techniques, this ensures that Kershaw knives provide a lifetime of performance.
Kershaw has collaborated with a number of custom knife makers over the years to produce ground-breaking knives. Collaborations include working with Hall of Fame Knife Maker Ken Onion on Kershaw’s SpeedSafe knives, Ernest Emerson, Grant and Gavin Hawk, Frank Centofante, Rick Hinderer, RJ Martin, and more. Kershaw has a commitment to innovation and has actually pioneered the use of many of the technologies and advanced materials that are now the standard in the knife industry. They say, “And we will keep on innovating, bringing new and better technologies and materials to today’s knife making industry and knife-using public.”
Today we will be discussing one of Kershaw’s brand new knives, their DuoJet.
The blade on this knife is made out of 8Cr13MoV steel. This steel is a popular budget brand of knife steel that comes from China. One of the more similar steels to this one is AUS-8, although AUS-8 is the superior out of the steels. 8Cr13MoV steel is inexpensive but still is capable of cutting. When this steel goes through a good heat treatment, which Kershaw always does, the blade will retain its edge for long periods of time while also having a high corrosion resistance level. Because this is a softer steel, it will be easy to sharpen and keeps sharpening well. Overall, this steel has a good balance between strength, cutting, and anti-corrosion properties. The biggest advantage that this steel does have is the low cost. While you do get a reliable steel, this steel won’t compare to the newer steels or the super steels that are in the industry.
The steel has been coated with a titanium carbo-nitride coating. Kershaw uses this coating to produce an attractive grey blade coating that increases the blade’s hardness, helps maintain the edge, and increases the overall lifetime of the blade. The coating is matte, which means that it will cut down on glares and reflections that may give your positon away if you are using this knife in the field. Plus, it increases the wear resistance because of the hardness of the coating.
This knife does have a slightly upswept blade shape. The spine of the knife is pretty straight from the handle to the tip but at the very tip of the blade, it does sweep upwards slightly. This is not an extreme upsweep like you would find on a filleting knife, so you don’t have to worry about the tip being as fragile as they usually are. But, the tip is still thinner and sharper, so this is not going to be a good knife for piercing or stabbing. One of the biggest advantages to a trailing point blade is that they provide the user with a large curved cutting area that is ideal for slicing. And, because the tip is sharp and thin, the user can perform fine and delicate work.
The handle on this knife is made out of stainless steel and just like the blade, it also sports the titanium carbo-nitride coating. The handle also has a carbon fiber insert on the front to increase the texture.
Stainless steel gives the knife high durability while also being very resistant to corrosion. Unfortunately, this material is extremely heavy, which is why the DuoJet is a heftier knife. Plus, stainless steel can be slippery if not textured properly or paired with a material that will give you the desired grip. On this knife, the carbon fiber insert provides enough grip that you can feel comfortable when you are using this knife.
The stainless steel has been coated with the same coating as the blade. Just like the blade, the coating prolongs the life of the blade by increasing the wear and corrosion resistance levels.
Carbon fiber is a material that has been made up of thin strands of carbon that are tightly woven together and then set in a resin. This material is very strong, but still lightweight. This is a perfect companion for a mainly stainless steel handle because the weights balance each other out. This material does require a lot of hand labor and time, so it is expensive. This does not affect the overall cost of the DuoJet too much, because it is just an inlay and not the entire handle. While this material is strong, it is not indestructible and does tend to be brittle. This is because all the carbon fibers are woven in the same direction, so while they are strong in that direction, if they get stressed in the other direction, the handle will start to break apart.
The spine of the handle is angled upwards toward the middle of the knife. Once it reaches the middle, it angles downward towards the tip. The belly of the knife has more curves, with a large finger groove that is equipped with jimping. This groove will give you a comfortable place to rest your fingers while also providing a more secure grip because of the jimping. There are two slight grooves following the main finger groove. The knife does have a slight finger guard, but because of the flipper mechanism, you don’t have to worry about injuring your fingers. Lastly, the handle does have a lanyard hole carved into the butt.
The Pocket Clip:
The pocket clip on this knife is only a single position pocket clip. The clip is attached for left tip down carry. However, it is a deep carry clip, which means that it is going to fit deeper in your pocket. This not only keeps your knife a little bit more secure inside your pocket, it also conceals the knife better on the outside of your pocket. These characteristics mean that you can go about your daily activities without worrying about your knife coming out of your pocket, but you also don’t have to worry about people knowing that you do have a knife.
The pocket clip is black, which contrasts against the dark grey matte handle. The clip is long, skinny, and does not taper. In the middle of the clip, Kershaw has stamped their logo. The clip is kept in place by two black screws, which do match the rest of the hardware on this knife.
This knife is an assisted opening knife that uses a flipper as well as being equipped with Kershaw’s SpeedSafe Assisted Opening Mechanism. The knife also boasts a frame lock locking mechanism.
An assisted opening knife is also often called a spring-assisted knife. This is a type of knife that springs open after the blade has been slightly pushed open with force. Because it is not a fully automatic knife, you don’t have to be concerned with the strict knife laws that surround automatic knives.
The flipper is a small protrusion that extends out of the spine of the handle when the knife is closed. The flipper is actually a piece of the blade, so when the user pulls back on this protrusion, the blade will flip open and lock into place. On the DuoJet, the flipper is a little more rectangular than your typical sharks-fin shaped flipper. It does have a little bit of jimping on the side that you will be pulling back on. Many people prefer the flipper because by its design, it is ambidextrous. Plus, it does not extend off of the blade, which means it cannot get in the way. Once the knife is opened, it acts as a finger guard. Lastly, while you are opening this knife, it keeps your fingers out of the path of the blade, so you don’t have to be worried about slicing your fingers like you do when you are using a thumb stud. However, unlike a thumb stud, the flipper does take a little bit of time to get used to.
The SpeedSafe is a patented system that assists the user to smoothly open any SpeedSafe knife with a manual push on the blade’s thumb stud or pull back on the flipper. Kershaw was actually the first to bring the SpeedSafe assisted opening knives to market, which in turn launched a revolution in opening systems. The SpeedSafe’s key component is the torsion bar. When the knife is closed, the torsion bar helps prevent he knife from being opened by gravity; while also creating a bias toward the closed positon. To open the knife, the user will pull back on the flipper to overcome the resistance of the torsion bar. This enables the torsion bar to move along a track in the handle and assist you to open the knife. Because of the SpeedSafe mechanism, the blade will open smoothly and lock into place.
The Kershaw DuoJet uses a frame lock. In a frame lock knife, frame is made up of the knife handle, which is most commonly made out of metal, like the handle on this knife is. When the knife is opened, one of the sides of the frame will push against the backend of the blade and prevent it from closing. To close this knife, the user just needs to push the blade to the side, which will unblock the blade, and then fold the blade back into the handle. Frame locks are known for being thick and strong, which means that this locking mechanism is going to be durable, reliable, and extremely strong.
The blade on the DuoJet measures in at 3.25 inches long while the handle measures in at 4.5 inches long. When this knife is opened, it measures in at an overall length of 7.75 inches long. Weighing in at 4.9 ounces, the DuoJet makes for a great knife for keeping on you at all times.
When Kershaw is describing this new knife, they say, “The Kershaw DuoJet offers you the dual benefits of great style and a value price.
This eye-catching EDC has a wide clip-point blade of quality 8Cr13MoV stainless steel with gray titanium carbo-nitride coating. The durable coating provides an extra measure of corrosion protection. The steel handle has matching gray titanium carbo-nitride coating and dual carbon fiber inserts. The matte gray coating contrasts handsomely with the carbon fiber—especially when light is reflected in the two inserts. The DuoJet locks safely open during use thanks to a sturdy frame lock. The handle is contoured for comfort and secure grip.
The DuoJet opens quickly and easily with SpeedSafe® assisted opening using either the built-in flipper or the thumb stud. The knife’s hardware is black to match the carbon fiber, including the single-position deep-carry pocket clip. The DuoJet also includes a lanyard hole so you can customize it with your favorite paracord lanyard. With all this style, the DuoJet is easy to like—and comes in at a price that’s easy on the wallet, too.”
You can pick up this brand new knife today at BladeOps.