One of my favorite knives for everyday carry has been a Benchmade 940-1. It was designed by custom knife maker Warren Osborne and is manufactured in Oregon City, Oregon.
The blade is less than nine centimetres long and made from S90V stainless steel. It has a reverse tanto tip and stonewash finish.
S90V stainless steel is very abrasion resistant, which means it holds an edge for longer periods of use, but that comes with a tradeoff — it requires additional effort to properly sharpen.
The blade edge was shaving sharp right out of the box. After a few sharpening practice sessions, I am able to cleanly slice telephone book paper into little slivers.
The handle is about 11.5 cm long and made from carbon fibre. It has an open body design with stainless steel liners and blue anodized spacers.
Subtle curves and rounded corners of the handle make it comfortable to grip, even for extended periods.
The knife is about 20 cm when deployed and weighs about 70 grams. It is designed to be carried tip up and has a reversible pocket clip to suit either left- or right-handed users. Thumb studs on the blade and AXIS lock allow closing and deploying the blade with either hand.
Being that the knife is intended for everyday carry rather than tactical use, I adjusted the pivot screw on mine for fast deployment rather than a solid lockup.
One could adjust the pivot with zero blade play across the axis but that introduces too much rotational friction and slower action.
The model 940-1 is based on the Benchmade 940, which uses S30V stainless steel for the blade, has aluminum handle scales and weighs an additional 15 grams.
The base model has additional style options for the blade, while the 940-1 uses premium material in a standardized configuration.
The lightweight and slim design makes the knife pleasant and unobtrusive to carry. Although expensive, it is a beneficial everyday companion while wearing casual or even semi-formal clothing.
The Benchmade 940 is built with quality materials and retails for about $245.
The 940-1 uses premium materials and sells for around $355.
Kim Quintin is a Saskatoon outdoor enthusiast and knife maker. He can be reached for column suggestions at email@example.com or 306-665-9687.