I like to throw you some really obscure special-purpose knives once in a while, but this one really isn’t that hard to recognize. The marlinspike gives this one away as a sailor’s knife, with blades and tools specifically adapted for marine rigging.
These knives must be corrosion-resista, rugged, and not too easy to stab yourself with. Like many sailor’s knives, this example from Gill is all stainless. The grips have a little bit of extra grip from the engraved logo, and the blades are all titanium-coated for extreme corrosion resistance.
All traditional sailor’s knives have a sheepsfoot blade and a marlinspike, and this one also includes a shackle opener. Shackles, in this case, are the threaded D-couplers used to connect nautical rigging. The threaded bolts have flat keys on the ends instead of hex heads, and the tapered shackle opener can twist many sizes of them open or closed. The aperture in the shackle opener is also useful for splicing smaller lines, although that skill probably isn’t as common among sailors as it used to be.
Do I have a sailor’s knife? I don’t. I probably never will, since the only boat I use much is a canoe. The blunt-tipped sheepsfoot is among the least versatile blade shapes (although the serrations help) and marlinspikes and shackle openers have few uses ashore.
Most sailor’s knives, including this sturdy example, cost about $25.