​5 Things to Know When Choosing the Best Flipper Knife for You

​5 Things to Know When Choosing the Best Flipper Knife for You

Jan 29th 2019

Flipper knives are at the forefront of easy-to-use, single hand deployment blades. A flipper knife is unique from knives that have automated or manual deployment in that there is a bar or tab that releases the blade, allowing you to free it quickly.

Whether it is for maintenance, defense, or aesthetic appeal, if you are looking for a blade that is easy to use and quick to deploy, you can do no better than a flipper knife. Here are five aspects to consider when you are looking for the best flipper knives on the market.

folding pocket knife 

1. Action

There are three main types of knives differentiated by the way that they open or, in knife parlance, by their action. There are manual action, automatic action, or assisted action knives.

Manual action knives require you to open the blade with your hands, either with a thumb-stud, cut-out, or some other opening method.

Automatic knives, also called switchblades, use a button to release the blade. Switchblades are illegal to carry in some jurisdictions, while other jurisdictions ban them based on blade length.

Assisted opening requires some effort on your part, but also has some moving parts. Blades with assisted opening action, like flipper knives, include a tab or button on the butt or spine of the knife. You can open an assisted opening knife with a flick of your wrist or with a push of your finger.

Spyderco Southard Flipper 

2. Blade

As with any blade, it is essential to maintain your flipper knife’s edge with consistent maintenance and sharpening.

To purchase the best-quality knife, look for a stainless steel, rust-proof blade that has preferably been forged and not stamped. A coating of carbon or nitride adds to a blade's strength and durability.

Consider your planned uses for your flipper knife. If it is primarily going to be used as a cutting and slicing tool, choose a blade that is crafted from quality steel. You can also find flipper knives with serrated edges like the Microtech Sigil MK6 OD Green Stonewash Serrated 196-110D for additional cutting and sawing capabilities.

For small jobs, a flipper knife with an upswept tip like the Brous Blades Vendetta Black G-10 4” Stonewash D2 assists with light cutting and piercing jobs. It is also aesthetically pleasing for collectors and enthusiasts of flipper knives.

For personal defense, a solid, thick blade with a sharp edge and pointed tip can slice and pierce an attacker, giving you precious seconds to move away. The Heretic Knives Medusa Flipper fits right into your hand for excellent grip and control.

3. Price

If you’re buying a knife to keep handily in your pocket, you want one that will last a long time. You don’t have to spend top dollar on flipper knives, but make sure the blade, handle, and mechanism are durable and dependable.

When it comes to an essential tool such as a knife, don’t compromise on cost. Cheap blades can break when you need them most, and, if you’re carrying a flipper for self-defense, you don’t want it to let you down in an emergency.

Flipper Knife 

4. Size

Along with the quality of your blade, also consider its size. A flipper knife is meant to be useful and easily deployed, but you won’t save any time if you’re fumbling to get the knife out of your pocket or off your belt loop.

Look for a knife handle that fits your hand, and that also fits on your person, meaning you should easily be able to carry your flipper knife on your belt or in your pocket. The ability to deploy a flipper knife quickly and easily depends on how it sits in your hand, and your capability to maneuver your finger to the bar to release the blade.

5. Legality

There are a lot of different options when choosing the right flipper knife for everyday carry. Knife-users like flipper knives because they are easily deployable with only one hand. But one aspect to consider is the legality of flipper knives.

Assisted opening folding knives are lawful, but the legality surrounding these blades isn’t as clear cut as you might think. Depending on the jurisdiction, there may be limitations on what you can own versus what you can carry. Many of these factors depend on the blade length, which may be limited in some states or require a permit.

A good rule of thumb is to either leave your flipper knife at home when you travel across state lines or to check the local state knife and carry laws before you make your trip.

The Takeaway

The popularity of flipper knives has been on the rise in the everyday carry community, mainly because they’re simple to use, low maintenance, and quick to deploy one-handed. For a large selection of quality flipper knives, browse our extensive online inventory to find the perfect flipper knife for your pocket.