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 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.