Benchmade vs Kershaw

You are in the market now looking for the best foldable knife for everyday carry (EDC). You probably have heard great things about Benchmade and Kershaw, which are both big companies known for their top-notch quality knives. So, which one of them is the better knife brand? Below, we’ll see the comparisons between Benchmade vs Kershaw to help you decide.

Continue reading below to learn more about:
– The general overview of each knife brand,
– The distinctive features of Benchmade and Kershaw knives,
– The pros and cons of Benchmade vs Kershaw, and
– Which brand that is generally a higher quality brand.

Benchmade: Overview
Benchmade is a highly respected knife brand. It has been around since 1988. The first Benchmade shop was set up in California. However, in 1990, the company built the base in Oregon. Benchmade is the patent holder of the famous AXIS lock mechanism, which is implemented in their most popular knives such as Benchmade 940 vs 940 2.

Many people love the spring-assisted AXIS, but some others prefer the traditional AXIS without the spring assist for rapid deployment. Either way, you will find that Benchmade’s lock-up is one of the most solid, safest, and easiest to use. Benchmade is also proud of their high-quality steels used on their knives as well as their fantastic designs that can last through the test of time.

When looking at Benchmade’s range, you will see that there are various options, ranging from budget-conscious models to premium high-end models. If you have a limited budget, knives like Benchmade Griptilian 550 vs 551 are highly recommended – they have nice scaled handles and durable 154CM stainless steel blades. If you have some extra cash, you should take a look at Benchmade 940 vs 943, which are among the finest knives ever from the company.

Kershaw: Overview
Kershaw is a well-known knife company that was founded in 1974. The company was founded by Pete Kershaw after he left Gerber in order to build his own company with his own designs. Today, Kershaw’s knives are among the most popular knives used by a wide range of people.

At first, the manufacturing of Kershaw knives was handled in Japan. However, the company has become a subsidiary of the KAI group. Since then, most of the manufacturing has been performed in KAI’s factories in Tualatin, Oregon. There are just a few models that are still manufactured in KAI’s Chinese and Japanese factories.

Kershaw’s line-up is mostly made up of sports knives and pocket knives – Kershaw Cryo 2(Kershaw Cryo 2 vs Spyderco Tenacious) is an excellent example of an affordable yet highly durable knife. The company is known for their use of high-quality steel and materials. However, some models are available in several variants with different blade materials. Make sure that you check the specifications of the materials before purchasing a Kershaw knife, just to make sure.

Blade Quality
Benchmade is known for using high-quality steels for their knives, such as 154CM stainless steel and S30V stainless steel. These materials have superior resistance against rust and corrosion. They also have great edge retention. They are really durable. However, you need special tools to sharpen the blades, as the blades are really tough. Nevertheless, if taken care properly, a Benchmade knife can easily last for a very long time.

Benchmade does not usually employ an uncommon blade shape. There are several designs available, such as drop point and reverse tanto. The cutting edge is usually flat, so you can sharpen it easily without much problem. You can read the detailed explanation of the knife-making process from Benchmade’s Virtual Factory Tour.

On the other hand, Kershaw uses a wider range of materials. There are affordable Kershaw knives that use value-class materials, like 8Cr13MoV stainless steel. This steel is durable, easy to sharpen, and relatively cheap. However, the edge retention is not very high, so it will need frequent sharpening. It also has low resistance against rust and corrosion.

Kershaw often deploys a unique blade shape with a thick spine and a recurved edge. The design helps to increase the toughness and durability of the blade. However, the recurved edge may be quite a challenge to sharpen. This is why some people still think that Kershaw knives are difficult to sharpen despite the blade material.

Handle Quality
Comparing the handle quality of Benchmade vs Kershaw is difficult because both brands use several different handle materials, some of which do overlap. Many Benchmade knives use fiberglass-reinforced nylon (FRN). It is lightweight yet very durable. The solid handle is usually textured to enhance the grip. Some models also use anodized aluminum handles, which are even more durable but with less solid grip.

On the other hand, Kershaw is available with various handle materials. The 410 stainless steel handle is among the most popular; it is highly tough and durable, but it is also quite heavy. However, there are also G10 handle scales available, which generally offer stronger, more comfortable handling.

Lock Mechanism
Each of the two brands has their own proprietary lock mechanisms. Benchmade is confident with the AXIS lock, whereas Kershaw boasts the frame lock and SpeedSafe assisted opening. Both are ambidextrous.

Benchmade knives are equipped with the AXIS lock. It is at the base of the blade. You can move the toggle to lock or unlock the blade in place. Although it does not have a full liner, it is really durable and secure. Without a full liner, the knife can stay lightweight.

On the other hand, Kershaw usually features a frame lock to keep the blade in place during use. It is really sturdy. It is also equipped with a lockbar stabilization. The SpeedSafe assisted opening is fast and easy to use.

Benchmade vs Kershaw

Name BenchmadeKershaw
Key Features- HIGH-QUALITY: The 154CM stainless steel blade is tough, rust resistant, and holds an edge well. The glass-filled nylon handle is tough yet attractive, making it ideal for hard jobs and everyday carry. - WELL-DESIGNED: Benchmade's AXIS lock is exceptionally strong and fully ambidextrous. The Mini Griptilian 556 is a manual knife that can be opened and closed single-handedly.- 3.1” 8Cr13MoV stainless steel blade with black-oxide finish for excellent toughness, edge retention and wear resistance - Textured glass-filled nylon handle scales offer a solid grip with gentle contour and comfortable in-hand feel - Drop-point, partially serrated blade is perfect for tackling everyday tasks like opening cardboard boxes, cutting rope, stripping wire and more
Price

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Conclusion
Between Benchmade vs Kershaw, we recommend you to choose Benchmade. It is a higher quality brand which uses tougher, more durable steels for their blades. As a result, the blades can have excellent sharpness, edge retention, and longevity. The AXIS lock is also very nice and durable. Kershaw is not bad at all, but the blades are not as durable.

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