Let me tell you right from the start: I do not hate traditional knives. In fact I like them quite a bit. But to me they are not useful. Here’s my reasoning . . .
I absolutely love the craftsmanship that goes into traditional blades, from the standard Case line to the custom blades that go for a few hundred bucks each. I do not doubt their cutting performance. They are still around for a reason. If they couldn’t cut then they would not have sold back in the day. I am not worried about the slip-joints closing on me. Using a knife properly would not cause it to fold towards your fingers, except in extreme circumstances.
The one thing that keeps me away from using traditionals is that they take a long time to open. In my job I can’t fiddle around with my knife. I can’t take the extra time to dig it out of my pocket and open it two handed. My boss would probably tell me that it’s a waste of time and force me to use my box cutter. There are other times when I simply can’t use two-handed openers. Sometimes I’m on top of a step stool (okay, a milk crate) and holding the box I need to cut. Sometimes I’m in the freezer with gloves on and can’t use a nail nick. It is simply impractical for me to use traditionals in my job.
Again, I’m not hating on traditional knives, just explaining why I don’t use them. One day I want to build up a collection of traditionals, but right now I have to focus on users. Feel free to comment below on your love (or hate) of traditional knives.
Editor’s Comment: I have the privilege of weighing in with my own comment first, so here it is. One-handed openers are the best tool for most jobs, but in other circumstances a slip-joint pocketknife with a nail nick fills the bill perfectly.
Just yesterday my 20-year-old SAK spent the afternoon doing perhaps the quintessential Swiss Army Knife task: it sat on a picnic table, slicing cheese and sausage and opening bottles while my EDC knife never saw the outside of my back pocket.