Not perfect, but still great.
This is a great knife that I believe many people bash it and forget the good qualities of the knife. Even though I believe this is a great knife, it does have it's flaws.
I received this knife from a cash gift from a family member, then I picked out the knife.
First of all, the black version of this knife is actually black and not gray as the picture on the website displays. I'm assuming their must be a typing or picture mistake.
About the knife:
The metal construction of this knife is extremely durable and still able to be very light weight with an ergonomic design, a great pocket knife. The clip is stiff, and most times trying to clip it on your pocket is a challenge, but it has such a clamping force that it does not slide off your pocket. Problem is the screws in the handle (handle only) keep wanting to fall out. I assume a fix would be to use automotive red Locitie. I have not tried that yet, as I have already lost a screw on the handle.
I do not know what the gray coating over the metal is. The coating does help from preventing rusting of the metal (Even stainless does rust, over lengthy time). Downside to the coating is that the coating prevents the use of using this knife for a fire starting striking tool such as the magnesium fire starting tool and others that require a bare metal surface as the striker.
From my research on the knife's blade material, it is of 400 series stainless steel. So if your a metal wizard for knife quality, this would indicate the quality of the blade and ability to hold a sharp edge. I have found out the handle is made of 314 grade stainless steel. Out of the box, I did not find this sharp enough to cut steak meat well. The serrated edge of the knife does help to cut the stuff that the fine edge would have a problem with.
Cleaning the knife is not a problem. A standard green scotch brite pad and some dish detergent is all you need.
When I first bought this a couple years back, I tried to get it sharpened on a home knife sharpening kit. I don't believe it worked so well. Maybe the cutting stones was not good enough for that type of metal. Have not sharpened it since.
I have had the knife for a handful of years, but I have only been using it for the past solid year, July 2009 to present and still using. I have put it through quite a bit of abuse.
I use this knife for grilling and casual camping uses.
This knife is one of the many folding knifes that is perfect for casual preparing for the grill at home or on the casual car campsite. I would not recommend this for a survival bag, or stand alone knife for cutting harder materials than food, for example.
Superb value for money
For the price, the Gerber Paraframe simply cannot be beat. I'm not even particularly fond of Gerber products and yet this is by far my favorite and most frequently used knife. I was given my Paraframe as a gift several years ago and I carry and use it regularly. Because it was given to me as a gift and I had no idea what it cost, I was astonished to find how inexpensive this thing really was.
This is an extremely durable knife; I've dropped it down rock faces, on asphalt, in the mud, and in a creek and there is not one single discernable ding anywhere in the frame. The blade (not the edge) has a couple scuff marks but far less than I'd expect with such heavy use.
Contrary to other reviews, I've found that the blade maintains its edge relatively well. I've taken it on several multi-night backpacking trips and it's served my every need. I've cut practically everything with it at one point or another and I've yet to sharpen the edge. The blade opens and closes very easily is very secure and sturdy when opened.
The design is excellent. It's relatively light weight (TacHide nylon core frames are a bit lighter), and is very low profile. I've found it to be quite comfortable in the hand; I hardly notice the belt clip at all. The belt clip is very, very firm and requires some effort to clip it even to a pocket. I don't use the clip at all (I prefer to just keep it in my pocket) but I imagine it would hold very securely. I've seen at least one review warning that you could potentially cut yourself with the blade folded up in your pocket but I just can't see how that's possible. I have relatively small hands and I couldn't do this if I tried.
Overall I'm beyond satisfied with this knife and would immediately buy another if ever I lost it. I can't recommend it enough.
I have the non serrated version. I picked it up fro a local Wal-Mart for a mere $17. For the price, it is a sweet knife.
It has a nice smooth clean look to it, and fits well in my hand.
It is fairly sharp right out of the box. Sharp enough that I haven't felt the need to resharpen it since I have had it.
The clip is super tight. I initially had a hard time getting it over the top of my jeans pockets and thought that it would loosen over time. I must say that it hasn't loosened one bit. And I have clipped and unclipped it from my pants pocket several times each day. I definitely have no fear of this thing coming unclipped and losing it.
It is quite light. I bought this knife to carry backpacking, and while I am know UL freak, I do like to watch weight. This knife weighs in at a nice 2.6 oz.
I have had no problems with the locking mechanism, but I do watch to make sure it locks securely each time I open it. I have this fear of a folding knife folding over my fingers, and this does worry me with this knife, but so far it has not been an issue.
The thumb stud is a little high in my opinion, which makes it a little awkward when opening it one handed. It can be done, but not gracefully...
I have read a lot of bad reviews of this knife, but in my experience with it over the last year, I have been quite happy. I feel like this is a hit or miss knife, but I feel like mine is a good one.
For the price, I am very happy with this knife and would suggest it to anyone.
I needed a knife so I went for the first one I saw, I was pleasantly surprised, I have bought 5 knives since and none of them can compare. I can open this fast enough to put a spring assisted knife to shame (without a wrist flick) if you put a bit of care into it it will always open smooth, although I have found a bit of fine tuning is crucial. I have never noticed any dullness, but I usually sharpen it before it needs it, a couple passes on a diamond sharpener and it will be better then new, and keeping a small diamond sharpener around isn't much of a nuicence.
Very sturdy overall, the lock works flawlessly and is very secure, but also releases smoothly making one handed closing possible also. I've never had any of the previous reported problems of the screws coming loose, any signs of breaking, or any hinge problems. I carry this knife with me everyday and my only real complaints are first, the belt clip is fine, but directly under the belt clip is a piece of the frame that ends directly below the belt clip, this can catch onto clothing and make it difficult to clip. Also the serrated edge is nearly a full half of the blade length and I have found it gets in the way sometimes when a smooth blade is needed, but at the same time is very usefull in its own right.
I have had this knife now for around a year and have seriously tried to destroy it, its doubled as a screwdriver, chisel, hammer, pick, and the infamous "pry tool" and has never let me down and still has most of the finish even!
Excellent knife for the money
I have two of the Gerber Paraframe knifes, the Paraframe I, and the Mini Paraframe. They are excellent knifes. They are sharp and currently well made. I have notied that some folks seem to have a gripe; that the blade dulls too quickly. Well, some things to consider are: with hardness comes brittleness, and an increased likelihood of chipping and possibly breaking the blade. 30 years ago Buck knifes boasted at how long a Buck would keep an edge. This part was true, but the edge of the blade would constantly chip. A bit softer blade solves this problem. The type of alloy Gerber uses for this blade is actually quite good (Do some research on the web) It is a balancing act between keeping an edge and not chipping (or breaking the blade on a longer knife),when prying-yes I know PRYING IS VERBOTEN! but how many of us have gotten frustrated and used our knifes to pry this or that! Keep a small whetstone handy if it dulls, and you will have no problems. Lastly, the basic alloy that Gerber uses for the Paraframes are used in some of their other knives, and in the knives of other manufacturers that have better reviews for the sharpness of their blades!
A Great Knife That's Inexpensive
I purchased this knife to replace an old swiss army knife that I'd had for many years... Plus it was a great excuse for me to go shopping for new and cool stuff!!! Anyway, Right out of the box, the draw action was smooth. It did take some practice and familiarization to become proficient at the one-handed draw. It's also pretty easy to unlock the knife in order to fold it back up. It seems like every small design of the knife was made to support a smooth and sturdy blade folding. Plus the handle, with its grooves cut out, make for a lighter knife.
As for the sharpness, the serrated edge is GREAT! But the smooth edge wasn't very sharp coming out of the box... Not that it doesn't do its' fair job of cutting rope or twine, or heck, most anything that you'd run into on a normal camping trip. In fact, for the most part, I can cut webbing, on my climbing trips, without fraying the ends. I'd say it's "sharp enough".
I ended up sharpening the blade myself and bingo! I have my perfect knife. I'm thoroughly happy with this knife and especially the price I bought it.
What would you expect?
The most important thing to note about this knife is its lack of extravagance. One may moan about what this knife lacks as far as advanced modern knife implements, however, for what be sought you should look to pay accordingly. This knife is basic and offers all of the essential elements of a decent blade to equip yourself with. If you want a big drop point for skinning or classy steel types for edge retention then buy those. What this knife offers is a light, durable, blade that one can grind into the ground for an assortment of cutting tasks in basic outdoor needs. Save your specialty blades for their own work. The frame is light. The blade is easy to make sharp (even if the steel wont hold the edge forever). The lock is sturdy and well made. All in all, if you want a basic workhorse for a small expenditure of cash then this blade is highly recommendable.
Additionally, I recall that it used to be packaged with a small pocket version which only helped with the value of this product but this may only be for a specific version of the paraframe II or something like that.
I have this knife without serrations, and it is a handy little blade. I use it mostly if I need a knife for a day trip, or for around camp and it performs well. I have de-limbed small deadfall, and build shelters with just this knife, whittled, cooked, eaten with, pretty much anything you can think of. I found that the blade was tight at first, but after some oil and working it for a while, it flicks open almost as fast as an assisted opener. After this break in period I found that the blade became less stable laterally, causing play when working it hard. Left and right thumb studs are handy if you need to use your other hand, or are a lefty like me, but the left stud is obscured behind the pocket clip, making it a little more difficult. The low weight is nice to have, making it a barely noticeable addition to your pack. Not the best knife around, but all in all a very nice one that handles well.
7 years of hiking and still in my gear
I purchased my Paraframe I in 2004, and it has never failed a task. As an avid backpacker I encounter many situations requiring a stout, sturdy and versatile blade. This one is in my pocket at all times.
Unlike some of the reviewers, I've never had a problem with opening or closing the blade with ease, or any nagging blade dullness. I do, however, take care of it. A drop or two of household oil at the hinge and along the blade keeps it clean and quick. And sharpness? I read someone used a "sharpening kit" -- not sure what that is. A good small whet stone worked with some oil on it keeps mine plenty sharp.
It's interesting to me that this knife garners so much attention, based on the number of reviewers. Maybe drawn to it like me by the innovative, weight saving handle design.
These other people don't know knives
Don't listen to the other posts. I have 372 knives. This, out of the box, can shave hair. If that's not sharp enough please tell me what is. It's a test I use and have a large patch missing on my left arm from testing sharpness. Cuts everything. Was hesitant about the belt clip as this is my first but it's built well enough that the clip sits high enough and is long enough to hold fast in rough and tumble situations. It also has a very low profile. You really have to try to reach the blade through the frame. Safe enough to not mistakenly cut yourself but for little kids probably not good. It's a gerber, it's light, sharp and you can't beat a dual purpose knife. Fantastic deal at [$]. Look around...everyone else sells this type of blade for [$]+. Can't fail. Buy it and enjoy it!