A good, compact blade is the cornerstone of any reliable EDC (everyday carry). Whether it’s for slicing open your daily Amazon delivery, cutting up a roast beef sandwich, or taking down ninjas on your morning commute, a pocket knife is a practical, versatile, and essential tool. Flipper knives, in particular, are great for all-around utility. They’re easily pocketable but deploy almost instantly with the flick of a finger. If you’re looking to upgrade your EDC, here are five of our favorite flippers to bolster your everyday carry.
The James Brand The Carter
With its catalog of beautiful, one-of-a-kind knives, Portland-based The James Brand is a perennial favorite here at The Manual. Every TJB knife balances simple, minimalist utility with a modern, rugged aesthetic. The Carter is a perfect addition to any EDC. The VG-10 stainless steel blade is corrosion-resistant and features a slide-lock mechanism to ensure it stays open when you need it. The design is also slim and lightweight, so it rides neatly in your pocket or on your hip. Plus, a thumb disc makes it fully ambidextrous, so it flips open lighting fast when needed.
Benchmade 380 Aller
Few flipper knives pack as much utility into such a compact form factor as Benchmade’s 380 Aller friction folder. When closed, it measures just 3.3 inches long. With a stubby, 1.6-inch Wharncliffe blade that opens with a simple flick, it’s less than 4.5 inches open. Like all Benchmade knives, the 380 Aller is dangerously sharp and easy to handle, making it more than capable of tackling smaller, everyday tasks. What sets it apart, however, are its six integrated tools. In addition to the blade, it boasts a bottle opener, a screwdriver/pry tip, micro bit slot, lanyard/keyring-hole, and a custom pocket/money clip. Thanks to its small size, it’s also legal just about everywhere, making it an ideal choice for travelers.
We’ve showered Gerber with plenty of love in the past — and with good reason. The company has a solid track record of producing affordable, durable, well-designed knives, and the Fastball is no exception. This American-born EDC flipper features a 3-inch S30V Wharncliffe blade with a handsome black oxide coating. Integrated B.O.S.S. (that would be “Balls of Stainless Steel”) ball bearings guarantee smooth, consistent, one-handed deployment that’s as easy as flicking a lightswitch. Plus, the removable, three-position pocket clip provides for ambidextrous carry.
Emerson Knives Mini CQC-7BW Flipper
Emerson Knives’ CQC-7 is one of the most lauded EDC knives on the market. The iconic brand took all of the best features of the “Flipper 7” as its known, and shrunk it down into the more compact, pocket-friendly Mini CQC-7BW Flipper. Every aspect of this knife — from the titanium lock to the 154CM Tanto-style blade — is near-bulletproof. What sets it apart from other flippers, however, is Emerson’s Wave feature. The design is deployable almost immediately. With a bit of finesse and practice, it’s possible to flick the CQC-7 open even faster than an automatic blade while removing it from your pocket.
Spyderco is well-known as a maker of no-nonsense, tactical gear worthy of the U.S. military. The Domino is arguably the company’s most practical, multipurpose EDC flipper knife. It’s a full-flat-ground, 7.68-inch blade made of premium steel that opens with a smooth flick, courtesy of unique ball-bearing washers. The handle is durable and handsome with a black Cubic Check carbon fiber/G-10 laminate scale on one side, and a solid titanium scale on the reverse. Plus, it carries easily thanks to a four-position pocket clip.
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