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Old 04-11-2015, 10:35   #16
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Re: Sailing Knife or Multi-Tool

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Originally Posted by Mikado View Post
I have a decent SS hunting knife in a leather sheath strapped to the base of both masts.

I learned to put ours away during lay-up. The one back near the wheel disappears. Just a little to tempting.
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Old 04-11-2015, 10:35   #17
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Re: Sailing Knife or Multi-Tool

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Originally Posted by denverd0n View Post
Same here. I carry a Wichard sailor's knife and a cheap multi-tool I can't seem to lose...basically a pair of pliers with a couple of blades and screwdriver bits.

And I usually have a cheap (like $3) LED flashlight. The key is to slow corrosion in ocean air by taking them apart and spraying Boeshield or CRC on the contacts. Lanyards are mandatory unless it costs more than $3. Of course for hands-free use, substitute a headlamp that does red light as well as white.
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Old 04-11-2015, 10:39   #18
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Re: Sailing Knife or Multi-Tool

Always have my Leatherman Skeletal CX with me. Leatherman Skeletool CX Multi-Tool SS
It's compact and is comfortable to use. Pliers are a natural fit in use, the screwdriver bits work, the knife stays sharp and the carabiner clip doubles as a beer opener. Took me a while to figure that out. Not a tool for everything but almost everything and find I often go for it rather than get an specific use tool for the job.

Have a Leatherman Wave but find it awkward to use the pliers and just not a comfortable fit for me. Also have a Myerchin large rigging knife which is a good knife/marline spike combination but find I don't use it much because the Skeletool handles most of my needs.

For cutting ability, the Boye's Cobalt knives are the absolute best. The cut through line like butter where other knives have you sawing away. Has something to do with some of the alloy in the blade acting like microscopic carbide serrations. Cutting ability is a big thing especially with the new low stretch/high strength lines. Friend was on a state of the art race boat that lost it's stick. Released all the standing by pulling the pins but went through every knife on the boat trying to cut the Dyneema or whatever running rigging.
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Old 04-11-2015, 11:04   #19
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Re: Sailing Knife or Multi-Tool

To the OP:

The subject of knives is a popular one on the forum.

Here is a thread I recommend because it discusses the merits of various rigging or sailors knives, the materials, types of blades, features, and has knoves listed that sell for as little as $10 or $20, up to $300.

You will see some photos posted of recommended or noteworthy knives, and anecdotes from many forum members.

In addition there is a short video embedded which shows an unscientific test of several knives when used to cut lines. The demonstration is helpful, but note that even one of the least expensive knives did a good job of cutting the line.

Rigging Knives -- Straight vs Serrated?

Good luck on your choice.

By the way, I received a nice sailors knife as a gift, and at first liked it, but later found that particular one uncomfortable to carry, due to its shape and weight..There are many more knives now available via the Internet. Choices, choices!
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Old 04-11-2015, 11:19   #20
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Re: Sailing Knife or Multi-Tool

Having had a bunch of more popular knives over the years, and having had most of them become extensively rusted, I bought a Boye folding rigging knife (serrated) some years back. I don't know what kind of incantation they mutter while making these, but it literally never rusts, I don't even bother cleaning it anymore after the trip. And the edge holding is like nothing I've ever seen. Downside: expensive (I think I spent about $175) and, very disappointingly, it opens but does not close (unlock) with one hand. This I find hard to fathom, it's so important when you need the other hand to hold on for dear life... Nonetheless, an excellent knife if you want durability and cutting performance. Also very light and sturdy. Pete
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Old 04-11-2015, 11:35   #21
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Re: Sailing Knife or Multi-Tool

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I have been carrying this Riggers with Marlin Spike | Ceramic Knife.org for over a year, it has quickly become my favorite knife ever. The ceramic blade stays sharp, and the Marlin spike solves the major weakness of ceramic knives, that you can't use them to pry at anything. It is also incredibly well made.
+1 on this recommendation.

That knife is literally work of craftsman's art and a very nice present.

The flattened marlinspike is much easier to insert into the spaces in a tight knot (compared to a round spike), and the flattened shape helps you use leverage to twist the rope apart.

As you noted, the knife edge is razor sharp and will stay that way longer than steel, if it's not abused. This is THE on to have if you need to cut/splice aramid synthetic lines such as Dyneema or Spectra.

PS - I agree with others that multi-tools suck. There isn't any function that isn't better served by a special-purpose tool, and for that reason I find them frustrating to use. I'd carry a multitool as a liferaft "survival" tool and one would be good for backpacking or to take along on the dinghy, but on the larger boat where I have an array of tools I always go for the best tool rather than mess around with something that's inefficient, non-ergonomic and cumbersome.
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Old 04-11-2015, 11:39   #22
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Re: Sailing Knife or Multi-Tool

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Originally Posted by GordMay View Post
Although I do carry a mini-multi-tool (as a landlubber), I find that they don’t do any of their many functions very well. I'd opt for a quality rigging knife.

Some knife reviews:
Sailing knives
robots= author=
Safety in Hand | Sailing World
I disagree completely! I have a quality " Leatherman " rigging tool, and it performs every job very well, if the job is suited to the size of the tool. I can't put a new prop on with it!
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Old 04-11-2015, 11:41   #23
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Re: Sailing Knife or Multi-Tool

Another good suggestion is the Victorinox Skipper.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...rch_detailpage

Quality is very good, and this is another knife that has a flat Marlinspike (advantages noted in my prior post above).

I own this one also, and if you want the "multitool" capability this one is the best I've ever used, for a boat.
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Old 04-11-2015, 11:42   #24
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Re: Sailing Knife or Multi-Tool

I know for sure I'll never buy another Leatherman product. Three of them failed in one year.
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Old 04-11-2015, 11:49   #25
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Re: Sailing Knife or Multi-Tool

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I know for sure I'll never buy another Leatherman product. Three of them failed in one year.
I'm suprised to hear this, mine have always outlived my ability to keep them without loosing them! I can only hope it's you abusing them and not an inherant flaw in the product!
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Old 04-11-2015, 11:53   #26
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Re: Sailing Knife or Multi-Tool

See this wonderfully important thread

The Knife Thread
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Old 04-11-2015, 15:45   #27
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Re: Sailing Knife or Multi-Tool

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Originally Posted by denverd0n View Post
I carry the plain "Salt" all the time on land as well as at sea.
I find the non-serrated tip is very useful compared to the Atlantic.

http://www.amazon.com/Spyderco-Salt-.../dp/B00WL6LV5Y
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Old 04-11-2015, 16:32   #28
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Re: Sailing Knife or Multi-Tool

There are a couple of things worth mentioniing on this topic.
1) A friend of mine managed to almost get herself cut in half, because she loaned her knife to someone for a moment. As her 2nd mistake was getting between & highly loaded line on a racing Cat, & it's shrouds.
2) I always carry two knives onboard boats, & a spare, on top of that, in my sea bag... as a loaner. I NEVER loan out the knives on my person.
Particularly as I've had to cut lines when situations were in extremis, or approaching such, a number of times.

- Knife #1 is an old Spyderco Rescue, which I got when they first came out, 20-some years ago. And it resides in a sheath on my belt pack style, inflatable PFD. Along with my marling spike. All of which I wear continually unless I'm sleeping.
The PFD belt also has a sheath on it for a small, high intensity flashlight on it.
Plus, the Marling spike, as well as the knife, have small wedge shaped holes milled into their handles so that they can be used on shackles.

- Knife #2 is a Spyderco Wegner, which I also purchased when that model came out 20+ years ago (& I have 2 clones of it @ home).
It's on a lanyard, which I run underneath of my belt, & clip back to itself. Or if in foulies, to a D-ring, which I've sewn to the pants pocket of my trousers, on every set of foulies I own.

For knives that you leave in place on a boat. Inexpensive bread knives, or filet knives work well. They have a high stainless content, & thus resist rust pretty well. And also are more than sharp enough to handle any line onboard in an emergency. The vang's a good place for such, but...

EVERY sailor onboard should Always have a knife on their person, period, if they're above the age of 5.
I got my first knives at that age (folding & fixed), & knew when to carry them, & when not to. As well as how to maintain them - vs. rust, & to keep their edges well honed.
Folks need to both; be And feel trusted, & also learn what's appropriate & what's not. Regardless of their age.

Boye knives are definitely good, edge holding wise. Typically being made of a Dendritic Cobalt alloy like Stellite, or Talonite. Which has small particles of Carbide or other toothy metal, suspended in the primary alloy of the blade. So that they essentially have micro serrations built in @ the molecular level. And due to said alloy's makeup, they pretty much don't rust. Also, given their unique alloy, they require sharpening far less often.
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Old 04-11-2015, 16:49   #29
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Re: Sailing Knife or Multi-Tool

I have two good knives. Both are just a blade and marlinspike. One is a superb German brand. I have to shat I only ever used the spike when sitting doing line work, never needed it in an emergency.
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Old 04-11-2015, 17:27   #30
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Re: Sailing Knife or Multi-Tool

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Originally Posted by Canibul View Post
I know for sure I'll never buy another Leatherman product. Three of them failed in one year.
I find that surprising, as I have had Leathermans for 3 decades and never had a problem (original survival tool, supertool, and wave). We are all different...

Leatherman has a very long warranty so if you send them back to the factory here in Portland they will repair or replace them. I was misusing the knife point and broke it off about 20 years ago; they replaced the blade with a stronger updated design, and a newer philips head while they were at it. The included note chastised me for letting "their" knife get rusty in the hinges, and to kindly lube it regularly. No charge. Cool.

I keep an inexpensive straight SS knife attached to my harness so it is available at all time for emergencies. When doing work on the boat I wear a Leatherman Wave, which solves many problems. When doing rope work I add a marlinspike as well. I keep LED flashlights handy but have found that underway at night I rarely need illumination outside the cockpit, and then the foredeck light does the trick. But for sailing I just carry the knife on the harness, and would consider a quality upgrade but never a folder - if I need it, I need it now. YMMV

In everyday life I just carry a lightweight penknife (Gerber ultralight) and a compact SS LED flashlight (uses a rechargeable lithium battery) on my keychain.

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