How to Choose a Knife For Everyday Carry (EDC)

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Picking out the knife you want to carry every day is a difficult decision with no real right or wrong answer. If you were to ask 100 people what kind of knife they're currently carrying, you'd likely get 100 different answers. And that's what makes it so hard. It's really a matter of preference.

Still the knife you carry every day, or your EDC knife as it is more commonly called, must be strong enough to tackle any task from the mundane to the disastrous and versatile enough to cut twine one minute and save someone's life the next.

While many aspects of which EDC you decide to settle on will be personal preference, we've broken down some of the most important things you should consider when choosing your EDC knife. Then, at the end, we'll look at some of the pocket knives at Knife Depot that are examples of everyday carry knives.

Figure out the purpose of your EDC

The first thing you should consider is what you want your knife to be able to do. The best types of EDC knives are able to do just about everything, but there are some things a small serrated blade will be able to do better than a large straight-edge blade. Think about everything you typically use a blade for. If you live on a farm, you might use your EDC to open bales of hay or cut thick pieces of rope. If you work in an office, you might use your EDC mainly to open letters. Once you compile a list of everything you will use your knife for, you'll be able to decide the type of edge and point that works best.

Decide on an opening mechanism

One of the most important aspects of an EDC knife is how quickly and comfortably you can open the blade. Whether you're in a pinch and need to get yourself out of a jammed seat belt or want to cut twine more efficiently, the type of opening system matters. Two-handed opening systems require you to hold the knife with one hand and open it with the other. A one-handed opening blade usually has a thumb stud on it. Assisted-opening knives spring open when pressure is applied to a thumb stud with one hand. Many people prefer assisted-opening systems on their EDC knives because it allows for quick and easy access.

Be aware of the size and weight

A good EDC is something reasonable enough to carry on a daily basis. That means if you decide on a massive knife as your EDC, you'd better be prepared to lug it around because a knife that's out of arm's reach is not effective. On the flip side, a small blade can sometimes be ineffective for certain tasks. There's no right or wrong length, but a good EDC blade length is roughly 3 inches, give or take. If you do opt for a larger EDC, it brings us to the next point.

Know your local knife laws

Just because an EDC fits all your criteria doesn't mean it's legal to carry all the time. Depending on where you live, there may be knife laws banning the carry of certain knives with a blade more than a certain number of inches. In other states, you may be required to have a concealed weapons permit to carry a fixed blade knife. After you check the legality of the knife against your laws, you'll be able to carry your EDC without worrying about getting hassled by law enforcement.

Examples of Common Everyday Carry Knives

Victorinox SwissChamp

The SwissChamp is the ultimate EDC because it has several tools and versatile blades that will do pretty much anything you need. One criticism of the knife is that it's not very useful for self-defense. It also does not contain an assisted-open mechanism.

Spyderco Persistence

Spyderco knives are beloved for their ergonomic designs and relatively low prices. The Persistence has a 2.75 straight-edge inch blade with a G-10 laminate handle. If this is too small for your tastes, you can also get the slightly larger Tenacious model. These two models are considered good EDC knives because of the construction and how well the blade holds up.

Kershaw Blur

Many Kershaw models make great EDC knives, but the Blur is particularly noteworthy because of its assisted-opening mechanism. The blade comes in at 3.38 inches and features a drop point on the stainless steel blade.

SOG Trident

The SOG Trident is a solid tactical tool that works great as an EDC knife. It has a 3.75 inch clip point blade that you can get in either serrated or straight-edge. It also uses SOG's assisted opening technology for quick access. The handle includes a seat belt cutter and a window break that will come in handy in the event of a car crash.