Knives Illustrated

GET A GRIP!

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With so many styles of knives on the market, there are endless varieties of handles available, but not all of them are created equally.

For a light duty EDC knife that may just see jobs like cutting string, tape, or opening envelopes, having a hand-filling, comfortabl­e handle might not be a big issue. For something that’s going to see heavier use as a work knife, hunting knife, bushcraft tool, or self-defense tool, your handle matters a lot more. You need a grip that’s solid and comfortabl­e, something that you can use for long periods of time without causing hand fatigue or getting blisters and stays put under impact or harsh environmen­tal conditions.

Checkering, handle grooves, texture, and spine jimping can all enhance a grip, but if they’re too aggressive or have sharp corners, they can cause hot spots and lead to the fatigue and blisters. Similarly, handle length and thickness can play a big part in what’s comfortabl­e as well. Over-gripping a thin handle can increase hand fatigue, as can trying to hold onto a grip that’s too short.

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