I’m not an outdoors person, so I lean toward stuff that I can carry and use on a daily basis. I leave the hunting and camping suggestions to the more experienced co-workers around the store. I haven’t been in to knives for as long as some people around the store, but once I found the practical use for an EDC knife, I never looked back and can always be found with a knife. My top picks can be found below
Swiss Army Cadet - I’ve always found Swiss Army Knives intriguing but always disliked the plastic/cellidor handles. After coming across the Cadet from watching a YouTube video I knew it was as close to perfect in an SAK that I would ever find. I find it to be a practical size in length and thickness with just enough tools to be useful to carry. My most used tools on the knife, are the large and small screwdriver.
Benchmade 531 - I had always looked at Benchmades but never knew if it was worth the money. At the time, I had never spent over $75 on a knife, but after getting hands on with the 531 I fell in love with it. It was super lightweight, felt great in my hand, and disappeared in my pocket. The only change I made was adding a deep carry pocket clip so that I could carry it in my back pocket, and it’s been there since early 2014.
Olight S30R Baton III - I haven’t been carrying a light for as long as I’ve been carrying a knife, but once I realized how useful they are, I always have one on me. My lights started out small with a 5.11 pen light, to a FourSevens P2, to a few others before getting my S30R. I’ve found the battery life to be phenomenal, with more than enough modes to get me by. I primarily use one of the low settings or double click into full brightness. It comes with a deep carry clip and a full charging station out of the box so there is nothing additional to purchase. The light resides in my back pocket along with my Cadet.
Spyderco Tenacious - The Spyderco Tenacious is the very first Spyderco knife that I purchased. It was in a long string of budget knives I had gone through ranging from Kershaw to CRKT. It was a very nice size, easy to sharpen blade shape, and fell into the budget category that I needed to stay in at the time. I was also looking to try a Spyderco, and felt it was a good baby step into the market.
Kershaw Skyline - The Kershaw Skyline was a groomsmen gift that I received. It’s what really started my interested in knives and will always hold a place in my heart. For the budget minded, it’s one that should definitely be looked at.
Victorinox 4" Paring Knife - Although I’ve made a few very good meals in my life, I wouldn’t call myself a cook. Most of the work in my kitchen can be handled with a basic paring knife. I like the basic black handled version because I can throw it in the dishwasher, but a rosewood version is available to jazz things up.
Swiss Army Tinker Warthog - Out of the non Alox Swiss Army Knives, the Tinker ranks up as my favorite. It’s not overly thick, and has a bunch of practical tools. My favorite of the bunch is the exclusion of the corkscrew in favor of a full sized phillips head. I know it’s against the rules to be against the corkscrew, but if you are into wine get yourself a proper one and opt for the phillips head. This design is also the first custom design we have done with Swiss Army, and designed by former DLT employee and my twin brother Eric. In my very biased opinion it is the coolest looking SAK ever made.
Zero Tolerance 0562CF - Before my jump into Medford knives I carried a 0562CF. It is among one of the handful of Zero Tolerance knives that I own, and still my favorite. It’s a big knife but carries well for it’s size. The Hinderer design fits perfect in my hand, and with the bearing system that ZT uses, it’s an absolute rocket of a flipper. For something just under $250, it’s at the top of my list for recommendations.
Medford Praetorian Genesis - Before 2014 I had never heard of Medford Knife & Tool. It wasn’t until 2015 that I was able to get my hands on one, and I was very impressed with the quality and designs. The Praetorian was my favorite, and when the Genesis version came out I fell in love. For sizing it’s right between the full sized Praetorian and the Micro Praetorian; right in the sweet spot size for me. Since my purchase of the first of the two that I own, I have not carried another knife as my primary since. I find them very comfortable and fun to have in my pocket, and a definite conversation starter for anyone remotely interested in knives. - Shop All Medford Praetorian Genesis