Gerber Torch I
I've had this knife for 3+ years and in that time…
Price Paid: $35
I've had this knife for 3+ years and in that time it has been thoroughly abused. I've used it to cut open aluminum cans, scrape out metal pipe threads, cut up dinner on the trail, sharpen sticks, open packages, and as a pry bar. It's none the worse for wear! A few runs through the knife sharpener and it's ready to go again.
I've bought other knives with the intention to replace it because it's a bit heavy, but they've generally been too light for me to notice when they fall out of my pocket.
I also like that this knife feels great in my hand. When open, the finger guard is large enough that I'm confident my hand won't slip, even when it's wet. The finger contours on the bottom and the ridges along the back further ensure your grip won't budge.
Also, the locking mechanism on it snaps shut when you open it and holds securely. The simplicity of the lock makes it easy for people not familiar with the knife to be able to use it.
My biggest complaint, and reason for 4 stars, is that it is difficult to open with one hand. Graphite, grease, oil, you name it, it doesn't seem to help very much. The part that locks back is a piece of pre-bent metal that springs under the knife blade to lock it open (which I like), but the strength of the spring creates too much resistance and hinders the opening process.
Pros: Durable, strong, holds edge well, excellent finger guard, locking mechanism
Cons: Hard to open with one hand after not too much use (different lubricants don't seem to help for very long either), heavy (may be a pro or con)