Cool Pocket Knives Selection…
different knife blade shapes
The material that your pocket knife is made of is very important to its lifespan, look and usability. Every facet of your knife is really important from the blade to the handle because if any of these are poor quality it can make the world of a difference even in a life or death situation.The blade should be of high carbon stainless steel or aluminum alloy, either of these would do:
Here are some types as used by Gerber:
154CM A high-carbon, high-alloy, space age, stainless steel first used for knives by R. W. Loveless about 1972. At that time it was vacuum melted. Content: Carbon 1.05%, Manganese 0.5%, Chromium 14.0%, Molybdenum 0.4 – 0.55%.
420 A stainless spring steel often used in production knives. Very useful in tanto blades. Outstanding for axe heads. Content: Carbon 0.15 to 0.6%, Manganese 1.0%, Chromium 12-14%
420HC An improved form of 420 that works well with high production tooling; commonly used by Gerber and other major brands. Content: Carbon 0.5-0.7%, Manganese 0.35-0.9%, Chromium 13.5%.
440A A high-carbon stainless steel used in most production knives and in some handmade knives. Works well through tooling. Content: Carbon 0.60 to 0.75%, Manganese 1.0%, Chromium 16.0-18.0%, Molybdenum 0.75%.
440B Content: Carbon 0.75-0.95%, Magnesium 1.0%, Chromium 16-18%, Molybdenum 0.75%.
440C The most popular high-carbon stainless used by custom knifemakers for many years. First used by Gil Hibben about 1966. Content: Carbon 0.95 – 1.20%, Manganese 0.40%, Chromium 17.0%, Vanadium 0.50%, Molybdenum 0.50%.
6061 Aircraft Alloy A commonly available, heat treatable aluminum alloy. Used in heavy-duty structures requiring good corrosion resistance. Can be hot forged. Easily cold worked and formed in the annealed condition. Can be stamped, bent, spun, and deep drawn using standard methods. Machinability in the harder T4 and T6 tempers is good.
Handle Benchmark handle
Knife handles can be made up of a variety of materials both natural or man made. The type of material you choose for your pocket knife will eventually determine whether or not it lasts or not.
I always prefer to go for the man made material over the natural as it is easier to shape and gives more flexibility in design. Therefore ensuring you get more cool pocket knives designs to choose from in the long run.
Here are some materials that the handles are made from:
Stainless Steel – Stainless steel offers durability and is resistant to corrosion
Carbon Fiber – Carbon Fiber is made up of thin strands of carbon that are tightly woven in a weave pattern and set in resin. It is perhaps the strongest of all the lightweight synthetic handle materials
Aluminum – Aluminum is very long lasting and provides a solid feel without the extra weight. In other words it is very lightweight.
Wood – Wooden knife handles vary a lot. You can have from the more common wood species to the most exotic and the price vary a lot according to the type of wood you are using.
See folding knife article here….
This is by no means all the material available for making knife handles as if you want custom pocket knives, you surely will have a wider range of materials to choose from including leather, stag, zytel, bone, G-10, micarta, mother of pearl, ivory, ABS and abalone.