The Tiny Texas Toothpick is a Case pattern that I had collected but never seriously thought about using on a daily basis. Until recently. My previous small slipjoint of choice was almost always a Case CV Peanut. A brief perusal of user forums reveals that most prefer the Peanut over the Tiny Texas Toothpick. The Toothpick is seen by many as being too delicate to stand up to daily tasks. That was my feeling too. A cute addition to a collection but worryingly fragile in real life.
Ah well, we live and learn. The Tiny Texas Toothpick (hereafter simply referred to as Toothpick for convenience) has stepped up to equality with the vaunted Peanut in my humble estimation. Sometimes the Peanut is referred to as a "little big knife" for its surprising adaptability to a variety of jobs. Toothpicks also fit this description.
My one minor gripe about the Peanut is that the centre of balance is further down the handle than I prefer. Pardon an apples and oranges comparison, but an Opinel No 6 has its balance perfectly located so that I am not conscious of it tipping as it is being used. A Peanut, on the other hand, seems in some situations, especially cutting tasks where the blade is being used tip pointing upward, that it wants to slip handle first down through my grasp. Slightly bottom heavy, if you like.
The Toothpick just feels right, very well balanced. One quickly adjusts to the narrow blade, which at 2-1/4" long, handle to tip (the proper way by which any cutlery maker or collector measures blade length) has further reach than the Peanut. Cutting an apple into segments with a Peanut almost guarantees fruit juice running up the hollow ground clip blade and into the joints, especially with a crisp apple. The Toothpick clip blade, also hollow ground, tends to avoid this, due to its slender profile and long tapering thickness, like a cat's whisker.
At 3" long closed, the Toothpick gains 1/8" over its rival's available grip. While this may not sound like much, it is noticeable in use. The longer handle and improved balance add up to a more secure feeling in my hand despite the slim form.
So far in practical use I have not encountered a job that left me wishing that I was using the Peanut instead. Cardboard, food prep within reason, and the myriad ways that a small pocket knife proves useful are easily handled. As far as being visually acceptable to the general public, either small pocket knife is equally unremarkable. Keeping eyebrows well away from hairlines, and brows tranquil and smooth.
In one's pocket, the Toothpick is noticeably lighter. While my Case Peanut tips the scales at 38 grams, the Toothpick offers a svelte 27 grams. Or in comparative terms, the difference in weight of an Opinel No 4, at 10 grams, with one gram to spare.
So far I have not missed the pen blade of the Peanut when carrying the Toothpick. Since prying with a knife blade is poor practice anyway, and to do so with a small knife would be taboo, the seemingly wispy tip of the Toothpick is never abused and therefore is free to do what it does best. Prying is what today's clever little keyring tools are for. I like the small Leatherman products best, for such (rare) uses.
The Toothpick I seem to prefer is a Case CV model. But then not everyone is a carbon steel snob. Well, not really. My stainless Case Toothpick sees quite a bit of use too. And at times the corrosion resistance of stainless steel is a blessing.
Compared to Rough Rider's Toothpick, the edge thickness is just very slightly thinner on a Case, at least on mine. This translates into palpably less effort for some applications. I still like and use the RR, and its ability to glow in the dark is a frequently useful attribute. RR are a great choice for getting a flavour of a new pattern without major investment adding to any possible buyer's remorse. But the nod goes to Case, personally.
The Toothpick truly is a wonderful pocket knife, refined but able, and with use beyond its initial impression of grace. It is with pleasure and well earned respect for this petite example of cutlery art that I recommend it unreservedly.
HH, of course, always gets my recommendation. Cheers!