Ask anyone with a survival mindset – no everyday carry (EDC) kit is complete without a knife.

So, to help you complete your survival kit, we thought it would be a good idea to help you pick the perfect EDC knife out of the hundreds (if not thousands) flooding the market.

Fixed vs. Folding EDC Knives

The first spec you might use to help pick out the perfect EDC knife is whether the blade is fixed or folding.

Fixed blades require a sheath and need to be worn on your belt (or perhaps around your neck). While this can have its advantages, it’s not the most practical option if you live in an urban area. You’re more likely to get away with it in a more rural environment.

Folding blades, on the other hand, have the advantage of being more discreet, as you can carry it in your pocket or clipped onto a belt. Because they’re generally more compact – and even lighter – than fixed blades, a folding EDC knife is often the preferred choice, even in rural areas.

Why Size and Weight Matters

Why would the size and weight of your EDC knife matter?

Well, it’s all in the title: this is a knife you expect to use for everyday carry. The size and weight of your choice is going to affect how easily you can do so. You don’t want to feel like you’re carrying an anchor in your pocket – and if you have an EDC pocket pistol too, you still want space for your wallet and keys.

Edge Type

There’s a wide variety of blade styles available, but the 3 most common are:

  • Full ground edge (good for push cuts, like preparing game or whittling firewood)
  • Full serration (good for sawing actions, like cutting through rope, but terrible for self-defense because it tends to snag)
  • Partial serration (the best of both worlds)

EDC knives with partial serration tend to be a highly popular choice because they’re more versatile, but the full ground edge is just as common for EDC. Once again though, it comes down to your personal preference.

Opening and Locking Mechanisms

Here are a few pointers to help you pick the perfect EDC knife based on its opening mechanism (assuming you decide on a folding blade):

1. You should be able to open your EDC knife on the first try. When SHTF and you need your blade in a hurry, you don’t want to waste precious seconds fumbling to get it open.

2. Single-handed – just as you should know how to shoot with one hand, you should be able to open your EDC knife the same way.

3. Ambidextrous opening mechanisms are a fail-safe option. If your dominant hand is injured or otherwise busy, you should still be able to open your EDC knife.

4. If you live in a jurisdiction where assisted-opening knives are illegal, you’ll want to take a look at manual-open EDC knife options that offer lightning-fast mechanisms.

The locking mechanism needs to be rock-solid too, so you can enjoy the same stability of a fixed-blade EDC knife.

While there are 3 common locking mechanisms for folding knives (liner lock, lock back, and lever lock), it doesn’t really matter which you choose – so long as it’s reliable.

Play it on the safe side by looking for an EDC knife with a secondary locking mechanism.

Grip

Your EDC knife grip can be looked at from 2 angles: the style and the material.

In terms of style, you want a grip that fits your hand easily and comfortably. This means a concavity, choil, and even jimping for your thumb.

The material should work together with style to ensure you can use your blade in a variety of conditions without losing your grip. Some of the more common options include:

  • G10 (epoxy and fiberglass resin)
  • Micarta (linen or canvas and resin)
  • Titanium
  • Zytel (a strong plastic alternative to carbon fiber, which is rather brittle)

Your Perfect EDC Knife

At the end of the day, you need to find the perfect EDC knife for you. Hopefully, this guide will help you do so!

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