The new Kershaw Cinder knife, model 1025, is a teeny tiny EDC folding knife that’s meant to be, well, not scary looking.
This has happened to me once, when in a research lab and using my Skeletool (review of the Skeletool CX here) to cut some soft peristaltic tubing. My tubing cutter was who-knows-where, we didn’t have any scissors, and my utility knife was borrowed but not yet returned. So I used my Skeletool to make the cut. A colleague of mine made a weird comment, with the details being lost to time.
As an aside, here are some soft tubing cutter recommendations.
The best knife or tool is the one you have with you.
I’ll carry a legal-sized pocket knife or multi-tool whenever I think I’ll need to use one, and sometimes I’ll carry both if they’re complementary. But if I’m going to be in an urban or very public environment, I’ll carry something more discrete.
When greater discretion is preferred, I’ll carry something like a Swiss Army Knife, Leatherman Juice, or multi-tool with an inside-accessible knife (like the Rebar), and maybe a smaller folding knife, such as my cute little Moki Ezo Red Fox knife, or something a little bigger but not “scary looking.”
The new Kershaw Cinder is designed to be small, but functional.
It has a thumb stud for manual opening, and liner lock for secure use. The blade is 1.4″ long and made from 3Cr13 stainless steel, which seems to be a basic alloy. The Cinder weighs just 0.9 ounces, and has a lanyard hole. You should barely feel it in your pocket or bag.
The handle is made from glass-filled nylon, which should provide for a reasonably slip-resistant grip. It has “faux G-10 texturing” to further enhance gripability.
There’s also a built-in bottle opener, because – why not?
The Cinder is a collaboration between Kershaw and Rick Hinderer, if that matters to you.
I feel a little conflicted about what I’ve said so far, and worry that mentioning the “non scary” knife parts might distract you from seeing the knife for what it is – a small and lightweight EDC folding knife.
Kershaw does emphasize the “non scary” appearance of this knife, but they also describe the blade shape, and how it offers plenty of useful cutting edge. It does look to be longer than its 1.4″ measurement suggests, but that’s just going by the image.
Just from the photos, I’m thinking the Cinder is a neat and thoughtfully designed mini keychain-sized knife. And with an MSRP of $11, it’ll probably retail for $8 or so. I have yet to have a negative Kershaw experience, and have high expectations for the Cinder.
Plenty of brands offer cheap keychain-sized knives that are manufactured overseas. But Kershaw is a name I know and trust. Maybe I’ll give the Cinder a shot at being on my keychain.
More Info(via Kershaw)
If you want something a little bigger, the Kershaw Shuffle ($17 via Amazon) has a 2.4″ blade and looks to be the Cinder’s big brother.
If you would rather have something with a replaceable blade, check out the Gerber Artifact ($10 via Amazon), which works with standard #11 hobby knife blades. The Artifact also has a bottle opener, and one feature the Cinder doesn’t have – a mini pry bar.