TTAK Knife Madness: Opinel vs. Boker


Facebook Readers: Click “Like” to vote for Opinel or click “Love” to vote for Böker.

In the penultimate showdown in the first round of our 2017 Knife Madness tournament, we bring you an interesting matchup. Opinel is known for its classic folding knife with a budget-friendly price, where Böker makes a tremendous variety of blades, under several labels, in a wide range of price-points.

Remember: You can vote twice: Once in the comments below, and once at this Facebook Link.


Some companies do one thing, and they do it extremely well. Opinel has been making their classic, wood-handled locking folder since 1890 in Savoie, France. Ok, so they make some nice kitchen cutlery too, but at least on this side of the Atlantic that is not what one thinks of when they hear the name Opinel.

Recently they have gone modern with one new knife- they are making a No. 12 (The call it the “Explore”) which has a stainless blade and polymer handles. They also recently announced a partnership with L.L. Bean, where they are using 100 year old wood, salvaged from a lake in Maine to make the scales.

I own two Opinels, a No. 8 and a No. 6, though my Father-in-law coopted the latter to use as his EDC knife. He loves it, and I am quite a fan of my No. 8 which I carry in situations requiring a less “scary” looking knife.

Chris’s review of the No. 8 Carbone is our second most read review of all time.

You can see our archive of Opinel content here.


The Opinel folding knife was born in the Savoie region of France in 1890 and has become a universal object due to its wide use and popularity throughout the world. A genuine trigger of memories, it is recognized as one of the best knives in the world. With the same attention to simplicity and reliability, Opinel has designed other ranges of knives and tools for all those who appreciate effective cutting. A simple, robust and faithful tool, this essential little knife has been in the pockets of the greatest artists, adventurers, navigators and mountaineers including Pablo Picasso, Roger Frison Roche, Alain Colas, Eric Tabarly, Jean-Louis Etienne, Ellen Mac Arthur, Paul Bocuse and many more. A constant landmark, cited in countless books and songs, Opinel has risen to the status of a timeless cult object, an unavoidable symbol of French culture.

There is also an infographic of the company history which we shared from the website Mental Floss.

Twitter: @opinel
Facebook Page
YouTube Channel: N/A



Böker manufactures knives under several Böker divisions. In addition to their Solingen knives there are Böker Arbolito- their South American line, Böker Plus – which are typically manufactured in Asia, and Böker Magnum which includes a line of swords.

They own several other brands as well including Antonini and Fox Knives – both from Italy, Real Steel – a Chinese company, Filmam – a Portuguese knife company, as well as the WorkSharp brand of knife sharpeners. While it came as a surprise to me that we had not in fact reviewed any Boker knives yet, we have had an extensive relationship with WorkSharp, having reviewed the Ken Onion Edition Knife and Tool Sharpener, Guided Sharpener System, Combo Sharpening System, and Guided Field Sharpener .

I personally own a Böker Plus Kalashnikov, which I bought (I actually bought 2, but gave the Dagger-point to my Krav Maga instructor) last year on Cyber Monday. I have been impressed with this Taiwanese-made budget-friendly auto. It makes frequent appearances in my EDC rotation.


The famous knives with the world-renowned tree-brand have been handmade in Solingen since 1869. Since the foundation, no knife has left our manufactory without this sign of quality. The long history of Böker has been affected by eventful times. But one thing has always been the same in more than 145 years: Our passion and enthusiasm for extraordinary Knives.

Today Böker is renowned all over the world as manufacturer and supplier of an unmatched variety of blade and handle materials and biggest manufacturer in Europe for Sport Knives, Tactical Knives and Collector’s knives.

The international success of our product range as well as the long tradition of our Knife Manufactory are both an incentive and an obligation for us to design and manufacture high-quality and innovative knives in the future as well. We make high demands on ourselves, our knives and the way we produce. With high quality standards, innovative power and passion for details, our knifemakers will continue their work.

You can read a more extensive explanation of the company’s history here.


When I realized we have never done a review of a Böker product, I was frankly stunned. I will write up a formal one of my Böker Plus Kalashnikov soon.

Instagram: @boker_knives
Facebook Page
YouTube Channel

You can read all of our Böker tagged content here.

Yesterday’s Condor vs. Victorinox matchup was a dead heat until a bit after 8pm when Joe Flowers shared our post for the second time today. That was all she wrote. A last minute burst helped Condor grab the win by a 44-31 margin. 

I had tagged Victorinox and shared the post to several Victorinox fan groups. It just didn’t lead to any interaction. It is actually a strong endorsement of Victorinox that they dominated the comment section here until Joe’s late share.  Condor had a lead on Facebook, but until the late burst it wasn’t enough to offset the comments.  

Tomorrow we wrap up round 1 of our tournament with a match between Morakniv and Lionsteel.

You can check out all of our 2017 Knife Madness content here.


  1. Cubbie says:

    Opinel. Wonderfully classic and useful design.

  2. Arctodus says:

    I recently bought my first Böker. Just received it today. A Jim Wagner RBB auto. Love it!
    I’ve had many Opinel knives. They are fine tools. But given a choice, I’ll pick Böker first.

  3. Jonathan Zook says:


  4. Dennis says:

    Boker all the way.
    Love my Urban Trappers and Kwaikens

  5. cmeat says:

    opinel is the only product that benefits from the application of frog lube.

    boker has my vote here.

  6. Daniel J says:

    Opinel. Cheap, reliable, and sharp. What more could a man want?

  7. Cadeyrn says:

    Boker. They have some real gems in their lineup. For example, I just got a great David Broadwell designed subhilt fighter from the Boker Magnum line. Price was great, presentation excellent and the blade itself is just amazing.

  8. Sam L. says:

    I have a #8 Opinel, and no Bokers, so it seems a lot like the Condor-Victorinox match-up. This time. Opinel.

  9. stuartb says:

    Boker – for the Coye Ridgeback; well worth the price of just 3 Opinels and a bottle of Frog lube

  10. Ed says:

    Boker hands down. Opinel is a hipster fashion statement where Boker makes sturdy workable knives. All I know is I’d break an Opinel way before I broke a Boker.

    1. Cubbie says:

      Opinel, like my beard, has been around long before the hipster scene.

      1. cmeat says:

        not. hipsters evolved concurrently with cahokia. historically repressed, repeatedly resurfacing throughout history most notably in brugge, and later as bohemians in major european cities. most recently they have appeared in a series of george romero documentaries.

  11. knightofbob says:

    I actually have hands-on experience with both of these, and though I’m definitely less than impressed with some of the Plus line, I have to give it to Boker. (That said, I kind of want that Opinel box set.)

  12. Chase M. says:

    Boker. Just modded my Kwaiken and carry my urban trapper quite a bit.

  13. sagebrushracer says:

    tough choice, I I had to pick only one, it would be my opinel.

Write a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

TTAK Knife Madness: Opinel vs. Boker

button to share on facebook
button to tweet
button to share via email