I have never owned an assisted opening pocket knife before but have always wanted one. From the outside they seemed like they would be flimsy and their action was all for show. Most of the people I had met that brandished an assisted opening blade, were of the “mall ninja” type. I had no real basis for that thought process but it was a gut feeling I had from secondhand experience. Since I love a good knife and I’m always looking for a new one to try, I decided to take the plunge to find an assisted opening blade for my EDC. I did not want to spend a lot of money on something that I had never tried before.
By Tinderwolf, a contributing author of Survival Cache & SHTFBlog
Under $20 Bucks
I found the Kershaw OSO Sweet Assisted Opening Pocket Knife on Amazon for under $20 and figured I couldn’t go wrong for that price for this particular brand. The first thing I noticed when I took the knife from the box was how lightweight it felt. At 3.2 ounces you almost don’t even notice the knife in your hand, let alone your pocket. At four and one-eighth inches long this knife fits diagonally in the palm of my hand with the blade closed. I felt a bit like a kid in a candy store the first time I engaged the assisted opening. The quick hard snap of the blade opening and locking up, was quite impressive. Shutting and opening the blade one handed is very easy and requires almost no practice as long as you are familiar with pocket knives.
Normally I am not a huge fan of stainless steel blades but this particular knife came razor sharp out of the box. Yes, it shaved hair off of the top of my arm. Thus far the blade has held its edge quite well through extensive use every day for months. I have used the Kershaw OSO Sweet Assisted Opening Pocket Knife to cut everything from cardboard, carpet, rope, to shaving tinder from branches. This knife wasn’t really meant for the use I have put it through because it is not a survival knife, nor is it a utility knife but the stainless steel blade has held up well and I like to test my blades outside of their normal use parameters. The Smith Pocket Sharpener does an Ok job putting an edge back on the blade but I have much better results if I put in the time with some Arkansas stones at home.
SpeedSafe® assisted opening
Reversible (tip-up/tip-down) pocketclip
Steel: 8Cr13MoV, satin finish
Handle: Glass-filled nylon
Blade length: 3.1 in. (7.9 cm)
Closed length: 4.1 in. (10.5 cm)
Overall length: 7.25 in. (18.4 cm)
Weight: 3.2 oz. (90.7 g)
The black injection-molded glass-filled nylon handle has held up extremely well to the abuse I have put it through. I cannot count how many times I have dropped this knife onto the concrete or how many times it has rubbed up against other tools and there is not a scratch on it. In some customer reviews that I have read they have negative opinions of the handle, though, from an aesthetics standpoint rather than functional one. Personally I like the “spider web” look of the scales and the feel of it in my hand. All knives are slippery to a degree when they are wet and this knife is no different. The few times I have used it while wet, the slippage was not great enough to be a concern.
Out of all the EDC knives that I have owned over the years this knife beats them all hands down. For the price, the Model 1830 Kershaw OSO Sweet Pocket Knife cannot be beat. I love the balance of the knife when it is deployed, especially when transitioning from a standard forward position to a reverse hold position. It is just as fast to deploy as it is to put away which I think is an important aspect to note. One other EDC knife that I owned had an additional safety lock on it. I can see why they would put such a feature on a knife but it did make it difficult to close and place back in my pocket. I think Kershaw did an outstanding job on this model as I have zero complaints and would not change a thing.
All Photos by Tinderwolf
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