Zero Tolerance 0450G10 Short Run Knife Review

Zero Tolerance is a brand of Kai USA Ltd. The ZT brand first made its appearance in 2006 when we saw a place in the market for a Made-in-the-USA lien of hard-use knives that would meet the needs of professionals in the military and law enforcement, as well as other first responders, such as firefighters and emergency medical personnel.

The initial products were combat knives, but since that time, the line has expanded to include a variety of general use and premium knives. From larger and heavier outdoor knives to slimmer and lighter every day carrying knives that are built to ZT’s high performance standards, ZT knives always provide knife owners with top-of-the-line quality.

Zero Tolerance Knives are manufactured of premium materials such as S30V, S35VN, or CTS-204P blade steel and G10, titanium, and carbon fiber handle scales. Operation is conspicuously smooth and ZT fit and finish is second to none. Their customers have described ZT’s as a “real beast” and proudly “overbuilt.” All ZTs are built in their Tualatin, Oregon USA manufacturing facility by their most skilled workers.

Kai USA Ltd., the makers of Zero Tolerance Knives, is a member of the Kai Group. Kai is a major manufacturer and distributor of disposable razors, surgical tools, personal care products, and housewares in Japan.

Today, we will be discussing the Zero Tolerance 0450G10 knife.

 

The Blade:

The blade on this knife is made out of S35VN steel. This steel was released by Crucible and Chris Reeve as an ever so slightly superior version of their excellent S30V steel. To understand S35VN steel, you need to understand S30V steel. This first steel was also made by Crucible and has excellent edge retention and resists rust effortlessly. This steel was designed in the US and was typically used for the high end premium pocket knives and expensive kitchen cutlery. Crucible had added vanadium carbides to bring out the extreme hardness into the steel alloy matrix. Dollar for dollar, it was generally regarded as one of the finest knife blade steel with the optimal balance of edge retention, hardness, and toughness. But, this first steel was tricky to sharpen. That was the biggest complaint surrounding S30V steel. So Crucible and Chris Reeve decided to revamp it and try again. They used a much finer grain structure and added small quantities of niobium, which is where the N in the name is derived from. Because of the niobium addition, they were able to make the outstanding S30V easier to machine while also improving toughness and the ability to sharpen. Many people believe that you will find the two steels near-indistinguishable. However, if the first steel was absolutely phenomenal, just imagine how exceptional S35VN steel is going to be. You will struggle to find any steel with better edge retention, toughness, and stain resistance for your money.

The blade actually has two different finishes. The blade sports a satin finish with a stonewashed flat. To form the satin finish, the blade is sanded in one direction with increasing degrees of affine abrasive, which is generally a sandpaper. A satin finish shows the bevels of the blade while also showcasing the lines of the knife and reducing its reflective glare. The finer the abrasive that is used, the ore even the lines; the more lean the satin finish blade looks. This is a semi shiny finish with a luster falling between bead blasted and mirror polish. This is also the most popular finish on production knife blades. To form the stonewashed finish, the steel is literally rolled with pebbles and then smoothed. This finish easily hides scratches, while also providing a less reflective nature than a brushed or satin finished blade. But, depending on the manufacturer, a stonewash finish can often look satin from a distance. A very positive benefit of stonewashed blades is that they are low maintenance and preserve their original look overtime; the stonewashed finish hides the scratches and fingerprints that can occur with use over time. Because of its ability to hide the fingerprints so well, the blade might not need to be polished as often as others with different finishes.

The blade on the Zero Tolerance 0450G10 has been carved into a drop point blade shape. This is a knife that can stand up to almost anything while also being able to perform a wide variety of tasks. One of the most common places that you are going to find a drop point blade shape in use today is on hunting knives, but it is not uncommon to find this blade shape on a variety of other styles of knives, especially Swiss army knives. To form this blade shape, the back, also known as the unsharpened, edge of the knife runs straight form the handle to the tip of the knife in a slow curving manner, which creates a lowered tip. It is this lowered tip that adds strength and control to your knife, which makes it a great option for tactical and survival knives. In tactical and survival situations, you are going to need a large amount of tip strength and the drop point blade style gives you just that. It is because of the controllable nature of this blade shape that makes this style such a popular choice on hunting knives. The lowered, easily controlled point makes it easier to avoid accidentally nicking internal organs and ruining the meat. The drop point blade style also is a popular blade option on everyday carry knives because of the large belly area that is perfect for slicing. The majority of your everyday tasks are going to involve some sort of slicing, so the large belly on this knife gives you the best capabilities to accomplish those tasks. When you choose a knife with a drop point blade shape, you are choosing a knife that can be used in many different situations from hunting and survival to your everyday tasks. This is because the drop point blade shape can take on the expected and unexpected without batting an eye.

This knife has been designed to take on a wide variety of different tasks, so ZT gave it a plain edge. This is the more traditional edge that is capable of taking on slicing, skinning, peeling, and push cuts. The plain edge blade style has been known for excelling at a wider variety of tasks as opposed to a combo or serrated edge. The plain edge gives much cleaner cuts than a serrated style blade. And, the plain edge is going to be much easier when it comes to sharpening, because you don’t have to worry about the specialty sharpening tools required to take on the teeth.

 

The Handle:

The handle is made out of G10 and Titanium. The front handle scale on this folder knife is made out of black G10. G10 is a grade o laminate composite made of fiberglass. It has very similar properties to carbon fiber, except that you can get it for almost a fraction of the cost. And although it is cheaper to produce than carbon fiber is, it still has to be cut and machined into shape, so it is not as cheap as something like an FRN handle would be. To make this material, the manufacturer will take layers of fiberglass cloth and then soaks them in reins. After they have been soaked, the layers of compressed and then baked under pressure. The material that you get is tough, hard, lightweight, and still strong. Actually, G10 is considered to be the toughest of all the fiberglass resin laminates and is stronger, although it is more brittle, than Micarta. This material is an excelled option for tactical and fixed blade knives because it is so durable and lightweight, but still non-porous.

Zero Tolerance 0450G10
Zero Tolerance 0450G10

The back scale on the 0450G10 is made out of Titanium. Titanium is a lightweight metal alloy and it offers the best rust resistance out of any metal. It is often compared to aluminum, although it is a little heavier and much stronger. Even though it is heavier than aluminum, it is still considered a lightweight metal. However, it is much more expensive to machine than aluminum. Titanium has a unique quality to it in that it has a warm feel to it, so it doesn’t make you suffer nearly as much in the winter time as something like aluminum. Unfortunately, titanium is prone to scratching, especially when being compared to stainless steel. Many knife manufacturers will act like titanium is the top dog and can do no wrong, but it is far from indestructible and not all of the titanium alloys are as strong as stainless steel.

The handle has a finger guard, ad deep finger groove, and anther groove to give your hand a comfortable place to rest. The butt of the handle does flare out slightly and there is a lanyard hole carved out of the handle. When you are using this knife for your EDC, the lanyard is perfect for hanging out of your pocket to give you easy access to your knife, while still keeping your knife concealed.

 

The Pocket Clip:

This knife has a reversible titanium pocket clip that has been designed for tip up carry only but it is eligible for a left or right hand carry option, helping to make this an ambidextrous knife.

 

The Mechanism:

This knife is a manual opening knife that uses a flipper mechanism to assist you. While thumb studs and holes enlist a thumb to open the knife, a flipper employs your index finger, and the feature is naturally ambidextrous. This mechanism is a small protrusion that extends out of the spine of the handle when the knife is closed. You pull back on this flipper and it pops the blade out of the handle.

This knife also is equipped with KVT ball-bearing system. The KVT opening system is a manual opening system that enables smooth, easy blade opening without the use of a spring or torsion bar to assist the blade out of the handle. Instead, the KVT system uses a series of ball bearings that surround the pivot point of this knife. As a knife user pulls back on the flipper blade protrusion, the ball bearings rotate so that the blade glides out of the handle then locks into place, ready for use.

The 0450G10 blade also sports a frame lock. The frame lock is very similar to a liner lock except that a frame lock sues the handle to form the frame and therefore the lock. The handle, which has two sides, is often cut form a steel that is much thicker than the liner of most locks. Just like the liner lock, the frame lock is situated with the liner inward and the tip engaging the bottom of the blade. The frame lock is released by applying pressure to the frame to move it away from the blade. When it is opened, the pressure of the lock forces it to snap across the blade, engaging at its furthest point. Frame locks are known for their strength and thickness.

 

The Specs:

The blade on this knife is 3.25 inches long with a thickness of 0.121 inches. The overall length of this knife is 7.4 inches long, with a closed length of 4.1 inches long. This Zero Tolerance knife weighs in at 2.6 ounces.

 

Conclusion:

Based on the streamlined form and high-performance function of the original ZT + Dmitry Sinkevich collaboration—the 0454—and on its more-compact cousin, the 0450, the 0450G10 sprint run knife comes with a handsome G-10 front scale. The G-10 gives this 0450 a discreet look, while its 3.25-inch blade and lightweight-yet-stronger-than-steel titanium frame, make it an easy-to-carry EDC. ZT built the 0450G10 with an S35VN stainless blade that sharpens to a razor edge, holds that edge well, and then can be sharpened easily. The knife opens smoothly and easily with our KVT ball-bearing opening system and built-in flipper. A titanium frame lock with hardened steel lock bar insert ensures solid lock up, too. Pick yours up before these run out forever.

 

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The Zero Tolerance 0460 Knife Review

Kai USA, Ltd is a major player in the knife industry that operates Kershaw Knives, Shun knives and Zero Tolerance Knives. Kai is a major manufacturer and distributor of disposable razors, surgical tools, personal care products, and housewares in Japan. For over 100 years, Kai has been the leading manufacturer of premium blades in Japan. They strive to be innovative and produce ground breaking new technology.

Zero Tolerance first hit the markets in 2006 when Kai saw a place in the market for made in the United States of America knives that could endure heavy and hard use. These knives were built to meet the needs of professionals in the military and law enforcement, first responders, and fire fighters and emergency medical personnel.

The first products that Zero Tolerance released were combat knives, but in the past decade, they have expanded to include a variety of general use and premium knives. They carry anything from larger and heavier outdoor knives to slimmer and lighter every day knives. All of these knives are built to meet Zero Tolerance’s high performance standards and have been built with the top of the line quality.

Zero Tolerance has developed a reputation of being proudly “overbuilt”. What does that even mean? It means that Zero Tolerance will only use premium materials for their blades and handles. Some of these materials include S30V, S35VN, and CTS 204P steel, along with titanium and carbon fiber for the handles. The operation of these knives are conspicuously smooth and Zero Tolerance’s final fit and finish is second to none. All of Zero Tolerance knives are built in Tualatin, Oregon, USA. The knives are designed, created, and put together by the most skilled workers.

One of Zero Tolerance’s newest knives is called the 0460 and will be a showstopper.

 

The Blade:

The blade on this knife is made out of S35VN steel. This type of steel has a long history behind it that proves how excellent it really is. Crucible manufacturing released a S30V steel years ago. This steel was a fantastic steel that had been designed for knives. This means that they were able to take all of the traits people look for in a blade steel and make the perfect steel. It gained the reputation of having the perfect balance between edge retention, hardness, and toughness. This is a tricky thing to perfect because in most cases, the harder the steel is, the less tough it is, and vice versa. But with the addition of vanadium carbides into the steel, they were able to draw out the extreme hardness without damaging the toughness of the steel. This was a masterpiece. However, customers did complain because of how tricky it was to sharpen. Not many beginners were able to accomplish this and many people had to resort to a sharpening professional. So Crucible and Chris Reeve decided to set out and redo this steel. They started out by using a finer grain stricter and also added small quantities of niobium, which is where the N comes from in the name. Because of these two characteristics, they were able to improve the toughness of the steel and they improved the ability to sharpen the steel by tons. This steel is just as hard, holds an edge just as well, resists rust effortlessly, is tougher, and is easier to sharpen. How phenomenal is that? S35VN steel is considered a premium steel and you definitely get your dollars’ worth when you purchase a knife with this steel.

The steel has been finished with a stonewash finish and then a machine satin finish on top of that. The stonewash finish has a variety of benefits and is actually one of my favorite finishes. The steel is tumbled around with small pebbles to create a textured look. After it has finished tumbling, the steel is smoothed out and polished over. The stonewash finish easily preserves the look of the blade for long periods of time and works effortlessly to hide nay fingerprints or scratches that the blade will accumulate over time. Because of these characteristics, it cuts down on maintenance time. After the S35VN steel has been through the stonewash finish, Zero Tolerance put a second machine satin finish on top. A satin finish is created by sanding the blade in one direction with increasing degrees of a fine abrasive; normally sandpaper. The stain finish shows off the lines of the knife, while also reducing tis reflections and glares. Because a satin finish takes time, it usually does increase the cost of the knife overall. By combining these two finishes, you get a very classy look. While it is textured from the stonewash finish, the satin finish truly shows off the lines in the steel and you get an excellent dark gray, matte look to your blade.

The shape of the blade on the 0460 is a unique one. It is considered a drop point, but it has a more upswept tip than you would normally find. You still get many of the benefits that a drop point style blade offers you. The tip is lowered because the unsharpened edge slowly curves down wards until it meets the sharpened edge at the point. Because this knife features more of an upswept look, it is not as dropped as you would normally find. You still will have plenty of control over your cuts as you utilize the tip of your knife. One of the other differences between this blade shape and the normal drop point blade shape is that the upsweeping motion of the blade creates a less broad tip. This is a benefit and a disadvantage. For starters, you will have more stabbing capabilities because the tip does come to a finer tip than on average. However, because it comes to a finer tip, it is not as strong as the average drop point blade. On the flip side, it is still considered a broad tip and you will have plenty of strength backing all of your cuts. This is still a very versatile blade shape because it also sports a large belly area that helps make slices and cuts a breeze.

 

The Handle:

To match the blade on the 0460 knife, the handle is also very unique in an elegant manner. The front handle scale is made out of carbon fiber and the back scale is made out of stonewashed titanium.

Carbon fiber is a generic term that encompasses the materials that have been made out of strands of carbon that have been tightly woven and then set in a resin. Carbon fiber is a reinforced polymer. This is an extremely strong material that is lightweight and won’t weigh your knife down. However, it is also more expensive than many of the other handle materials. Even though it is so extremely strong, it is a brittle material. This is because all of the fibers in the material have been woven together in one direction. So when they are being stressed in that one direction, the material is almost unbreakable. However, when the fibers are stressed in other directions, they become weak and are prone to breaking or cracking. This means that if this handle scale is bumped against a sharp or hard object, it might crack. One of the major benefits about carbon fiber is that you can switch up that pattern based off of how the fibers have been woven. The pattern on this handle scale is a diagonal checkered pattern. And Zero Tolerance has manipulated the carbon fiber to be a bronze color. This handle scale looks very elegant and modern.

The other handle scale has been made out of titanium. Titanium is also an excellent material for your knife handle. Often times, the titanium is compared to aluminum and while they do have many similar properties, titanium is the superior of the two. Titanium is heavier than aluminum, but it also is a lightweight metal alloy and won’t weigh your knife down. With the extra weight that you get, you get much more strength. Titanium also is one of the metal alloys that has a warm feel to it, so if you are working in a cold environment, this is an excellent handle choice of you. Titanium is expensive to machine and is prone to scratches. To finish off the titanium to help protect it, Zero Tolerance finished it with a stonewash finish, matching the blade.

The handle has an elongated finger groove carved into it to provide you with fantastic grip. There is also shallow jimping across the top half end section of the handle that will also help you with grip.

 

The Pocket Clip:

The pocket clip is black to match the other hardware on the knife. The pocket clip is connected to the titanium handle scale, so the black adds a nice, industrial contrast. The clip is a single position clip meaning that it can only be right hand carried with the tip of the knife up.

 

Zero Tolerance 0460
Zero Tolerance 046002

The Mechanism:

This is a manual opening knife that uses a flipper to assist you. The flipper on this knife is more triangular than you would normally find, helping to give it the modern look. To deploy the blade on this knife, you push down on the flipper that protrudes from the spine of the handle when the knife is closed. This puts enough pressure on the blade and flips it into place and is then locked and ready to use. To lock the blade into use, Zero Tolerance used a titanium frame lock and a hardened steel lock bar insert. With these two pieces, you won’t have to worry about the knife coming unlocked in the middle of use.

The 0460 knife also sports Zero Tolerance’s KVT ball bearing manual opening system. When explaining the KVT system, ZT has said, “The KVT opening system is a manual opening system that enables smooth, easy blade opening without the use of a spring or torsion bar to ‘assist’ the blade out of the handle. Instead, the KVT system uses a series of ball bearings that surround the pivot point of this folding knife. As a knife user pulls back on the flipper blade protrusion or pushes outward on the thumb stud, the ball bearings rotate so that the blade glides out of the handle then locks into place, ready for use.” This technology is innovative and groundbreaking, making manual opening smooth. Plus, with the use of this system, you can easily open this knife with only one hand.

 

The Specs:

This knife is made in the United States of America. The blade on this knife is 3.25 inches long with a thickness of 0.121 inches. When the 0460 knife is opened, it measures in at 7.5 inches long and sports a closed length of 4.4 inches long. This knife weighs in at 2.3 ounces.

 

Conclusion:

Over the past decade, Zero Tolerance has earned a reputation of being proudly overbuilt. This is because Zero Tolerance only uses the finest of materials and their operation is smooth. Their final fit and finish is second to none. With the combination of these three characteristics, your Zero Tolerance knife is able to last through the ages with you. Your Zero Tolerance knife will be able to assist you in all of your adventures, even the heavier duty ones, because they have been designed to take a beating.

This knife is Sinkevich designed and has been modeled after the original 0450 knife. This time, they added more overall length and more curve to the normally traditional blade and handle. Because of the flipper mechanism, this knife can be opened ambidextrously and the KVT ball bearing system makes the opening smooth. The different handle scales add a touch of modern to the classic knife. The stonewashed blade will have its look preserved overtime. And knowing that this knife was made in the USA is just the cherry on top. This is a fantastic option for your knife collection.  Find the 0460 and all the Zero Tolerance knives here on our website–in stock and ready to ship.

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Zero Tolerance 0562CF Hinderer Flipper Knife

Zero Tolerance 0562CF
Zero Tolerance 0562CF

The Zero Tolerance 0562CF won the American Made Knife of the Year® award at the 2014 BLADE Show.  This Hinderer designed flipper features a Bohler M390 blade that opens silky smooth on the KVT ball-bearing system.  The flat ground blade delivers a tough as nails point along with a long lasting edge for maximum slicing efficiency.  Built in the USA, the front scale is carbon fiber and the back is stonewashed titanium.  This knife is one for the collection.  Find it here on our website.


SPECIFICATIONS: 

  • Made in the USA
  • KVT ball-bearing opening
  • Reversible deep-carry clip
  • Frame lock, lockbar stabilizer
  • Steel: M390, stonewashed & satin finish
  • Handle: Carbon fiber front, stonewashed titanium back
  • Blade Length: 3.5 in. (8.9 cm)
  • Closed Length: 4.8 in. (12.2 cm)
  • Weight: 5.5 oz. (156 g)
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