We are often asked by customers to help them choose the best EDC knife for them to buy – in fact, the question comes up so often that we’ve put together this quick folding knife buying guide to help you choose.
Every Day Carry (EDC) knives usually conform to the same basic specification – that is, they have a folding blade, which is 7.62cm in length (3 inches) or shorter. This specification is dictated by UK law. You can read more here:
…and here at Heinnie Haynes, we have over 250 knives that fit the “UK Friendly Carry” specification. To help you fine-tune your selection, here’s the Heinnie Haynes Penknife Buying Guide.
Spyderco UK Penknife.
The Spyderco UKPK is one of our best selling folding knives. The customer reviews speak for themselves. It’s a simple design with a characteristic leaf-shaped blade, opened using the thumb in the Spyderco-trademark circular hole. Some would say that the design is too aggressive looking.
The handle is made from fibreglass reinforced nylon (FRN), making it extremely light (perhaps too light?) in the hand. When gripped, the thumb is nicely forward on the thumb ramp and the index finger on the choil behind the blade stops the knife closing on one’s hand. When opening or closing, the blade pauses at 90o so that it doesn’t inadvertently catch one’s hand. Supplied with a wire pocket clip which can be changed for right or left hand carry.
Boker Plus Nano 42
This is a cracking little knife which feels small in the hand – almost cute in its design with a tiny snub-nosed blade and slim little handle. One side of the handle is coloured FRN, the other side is metal.
The blade sits nicely forward of the hand, but is slightly prone to closing if sufficient pressure is applied to the back of the blade. The blade itself is a thick lump of metal, which can be positioned with a surprising degree of dexterity. Supplied with a one position pocket clip.
The contours of the FRN handle scales are lovely to touch and when folded up, there are no sharp edges. Altogether, a lovely looking tool.
The classic pen knife – a knife with 11 tools. It’s a the type of knife that everyone will think of when they picture a Swiss Army Knife. It’s not until you carry one of these that you start to appreciate the uses to which you can put it. Some users will enjoy the ability to flip out a tool for every occasion, and love the deep red of the handle scales. To others, it’s a bit too fiddly, and annoying to use the thumb-notch every time you want to take out a tool. It’s an icon of the knife world. No pocket clip, but with a handy keyring.
Lansky World Legal Knife
There’s no two ways about it – you’ll love or hate this knife. It’s big, it’s heavy, with an apparently huge blade, but it ticks all of the boxes of being carry-friendly in the UK. We like it because it’s so strong. You can use it all day long, drop it in the warehouse, pick it up, sharpen it, and it will keep on going. The handle scales are comfortable to hold on to, the blade is sturdy, so can apply a decent amount of pressure to it, and the blade is thick! So thick that you can use it for the sort of prying tasks that would destroy a lesser knife (quick note – not many knifemakers warrant the use of their knives as prying tools – if you snap the tip off, that’s your lookout). The only obvious downside to this as a go-anywhere tool is that it just looks so fierce.
Boker Plus XS
Another of Heinnie Haynes’ best selling small slipjoint folders – it’s non-locking and just about sub-7.2cm in length, making it extremely popular. Boker Plus tools are well regarded, combining good design at a keen price. The knife looks more tactical than some – and the black colour scheme contributes to that look. The G10 handles are large compared to the blade, and nicely textured to provide excellent grip. The opening is fairly tight – there’s no lock to keep it open or closed, but there’s a fair amount of friction on its opening. One needs to take care closing it, as there’s no halfway stop position, as on some other knives. The XS is supplied with a removable pocket clip so that it can be modified for left- or right-side carry.
A classic style Scandinavian pocket knife, extremely well made, this tool looks and feels like a quality item. It’s available with carbon fibre or wooden scales, it’s almost delicate in the hand with a fine, pointed blade. The most popular style is the carbon fibre handle with the Scandi grind on the blade. The knife is fairly weighty in the hand, the weight coming from the blade and the steel liners. The blade stops at 90o when closing, allowing one to save one’s fingers from being trapped by the blade.
The PK70 is roughly twice the price of the Spyderco UKPK and the Boker Plus XS – and it’s apparent in the hand where that money has been used. The materials are of high quality, and the fit and finish is generally excellent. This knife is supplied with a small but strong pocket clip. It’s been described as an “exquisite gentleman’s pocket knife, and it certainly fits that description.
There are plenty more knives to choose from than those in this list – have a look at our range on Heinnie.com, and see if there’s one that suits you.