I wasn’t sure what I would find when I clicked “Gateway Knives for Each Brand” from Knife Depot’s official blog – The Cutting Edge. I certainly didn’t expect to have been such a predictable consumer, but I suppose there is a reason that these knives are best sellers. They are all great knives, and in several cases not only do I have the knife in question, but it is the only knife I have from a particular brand.
I was curious to learn more about how people came to the obsession of knives, so I set out to find the most common “gateway knives” for every brand. These are the knives people first got that made them more interested in a brand, slowly consuming them until they had bought up as many knives from the brand as possible.
I don’t want to spoil their list, so I encourage you to read the whole thing. I am going to talk about the companies and knives I do own.
In the photo at the top I assembled the knives from the list that I own that were close at hand, as well as a couple of my alternates, and threw in the Opinel No. 8 because most people regard it as the perfect size for most versatile use of lineup.
Being the first on the list with a big color photograph really got my attention and made me scroll down to read more. I absolutely agree with this, as the Mini-Grip is my Go-To Recommendation for friends looking to buy their first EDC.
Boker: (Boker-Plus) Kalashnikov Auto
I bought mine on Cyber Monday 2016 from BladeHQ for $29. I have carried this knife probably 25-30% of the time since. Given I have any of a dozen blades in my rotation at a given point, that is an incredible amount of time and in the same range as my $250 Hogue X-5 – my other most frequent EDC.
Buck: When I realized that the 3rd knife on their list was also one I had – the Buck 110 (read Chris’s review here), I began to laugh at how accurate Knife Depot’s list was. I don’t have mine in the picture, since it disappeared in my move from Idaho to Tennessee, but it is, and should be in everyone’s collection.
Case: The 4th company is the first one I didn’t own. I only have one Case knife, the folder in the picture, but I think in the case of most Slipjoints, the blade arrangement is most important. I personally prefer a Stockman style, like the Primble I restored.
I own both the ESEE Izula and the SOG Flash 2. Both were gifts from Knife Rights for my Ultimate Steel donation this past year. The Izula was on my buy list already, and I am pleased with it. The SOG is a good assisted flipper, but not quite in the class of many of the knives on this list.
CRKT: Knife Depot lists the Kit Carson M-16. I have no quibble with this. I own 3 CRKT Knives, a Minimalist, a Halfachance machete, and the Ken Onion Hootenanny The M-16 is a great knife. I know several friends who own them, and I think it is a quality knife.
Cold Steel: I am not at all familiar with their choice, and my experience with CS has been hit or miss. The Mackinac Hunter is a heck of a solid knife though.
Spyderco: The Tenacious is a great knife, and I completely understand why they chose it. My first Spyderco was an Endura. At the time I bought that the Tenacious didn’t even exist. The Delica, which I do own would have been a good choice back then. I would say that the Native could have made the list as a Gateway Spydie as well.
Victorinox: It has been a while since I have bought a new SAK, but my gateway Victorinox was a Hiker I believe.
There are plenty of other companies on the list, but I don’t own any of their knives. Not that I wouldn’t mind owning a ZT or an Emerson, or any of the others for that matter. All of this comes back around to our question of the day:
What are your “Gateway Knives” for the various companies? Do you own these knives or others?