Everyday Carry

The Best Pocket Cleaver Knives for EDC in 2022

Jonathan Tayag
The Best Pocket Cleaver Knives for EDC in 2022

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The type of knife you carry dictates the kind of work you can do with it. And if you perform a lot of slicing and chopping, you're going to want a more utility-oriented blade. That doesn't mean that you're stuck with carrying a standard utility knife, though. The popular emergence of cleaver-style knives for EDC gives you a much more robust set of options. In this guide, we'll explain why cleaver-style knives are good for EDC. We'll also show you some of our favorite knives in this category for you to choose from.

What makes a cleaver-style knife good for everyday carry?

Like the reliable kitchen cleaver, these knives excel at cutting, slicing, and chopping. Compared to a thin utility knife, cleaver-style blades are more solidly built. Their size can help you tackle larger tasks, but they still fit in your pocket. And because they tend to lack a pronounced point, they can help you stay low-profile when using one in public.

CRKT Ripsnort

The Ripsnort features a beefy 2.831” cleaver-style blade with a bit of a curved belly to enhance its slicing capabilities. The flipper mechanism provides easy one-handed opening, and its 8Cr13MoV blade is held in place with a locking liner. Despite the impressive look of the blade, it folds down to a manageable 4” in your pocket.

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CRKT Razel

The Razel improves upon the standard single-edge cleaver design by adding a chisel tip. This gives you a bit of added utility to scrape things away or wedge it into small spaces. The linen micarta scales help you keep a firm grip on the knife, and the ergonomic shape of the handle gives you solid control. The 3.125” 8Cr13MoV blade has an ambidextrous thumbstud opening, and a liner lock keeps it in place during use.

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CRKT Pilar

This Jesper Voxnaes collaboration blade was one of the most popular knives released last year, and it's easy to see why. The Pilar has a compact, minimalist look that belies its strength as an EDC knife. It features a wicked-sharp 2.4” flat ground cleaver-style blade that retains a bit of a tip for piercing work. The stainless steel handle features a solid frame lock, and the design lets the blade sit comfortably and securely in hand during use.

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Spyderco Roc

The Spyderco Roc is a venerable knife in this category, and one of the first to really take off. It features a Japanese-inspired cleaver-shaped blade with sharp VG-10 steel. The 3.125” blade comes with Spyderco's signature thumbhole for easy opening, even with gloves. An affirmative liner lock holds everything in place during use. Plus the textured G-10 handles provide a tactical bent to the blade and provide you a lot of precise control over the cut, even when wet.

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Spyderco Squarehead

The Squarehead is a bit different from the other knives in this category because of how small it is. It features a compact 1.25” CPM-S30V blade cut with a unique one-sided chisel grind that makes it super sharp. The lightweight titanium frame also functions as a lock for the blade. At just 1.08 ounces, this is a featherweight knife that's great for barely-there pocket or neck carry on a chain.

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Kershaw Barge

Cleaver-style blades tend to get abused as pry bars. As folding knives, they're really not made to do that on a regular basis, no matter how solidly built they are. The Kershaw Barge offers the best of both worlds: an excellent 2.6” 8Cr13Mov cleaver-style blade with a frame lock and a handle that also functions as a pry bar.

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Kershaw Pub

The Pub is a compact cleaver-style utility knife designed in collaboration between Kershaw and custom knifemaker Dmitry Sinkevich. It's a friction folder knife with a detent that helps keep it in place for most tasks. The 1.6” 8Cr13MoV blade itself features an upswept plain edge and an attractive stonewashed finish. The rear of the handle also features a bottle opener for added utility.

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Kizer Sheepdog

The Sheepdog from Kizer is a heavy-duty cleaver-style knife featuring premium S35VN steel and a gorgeous titanium handle. Its 3.25” blade has a slight curve for cutting efficiency, and it's easy to deploy with one hand with the flipper and ball-bearing assisted opening. The handle is ergonomic and made to fit snugly in your hand, and the flipper acts as an additional choil to prevent your fingers from slipping towards the blade during hard use.

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Boker Magnum Outdoor Cuisine

If you're looking for something with a classy gent's feel, or you want to actually use your cleaver-style knife for food, the Boker Magnum Outdoor Cuisine is a great choice. It has a longer 4.75” blade for bigger tasks or for food prep on the go. Its 440 stainless steel is also both durable and easy to maintain. The rosewood handle adds an attractive touch, concealing a sturdy liner lock to hold everything together.

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Gerber Flatiron

If you've seen our SHOT Show coverage, you'll know that the Gerber Flatiron is one of the most interesting knives announced this year. It features a thick, 3.8” upswept plain-edge cleaver style blade and a substantial handle that lets you get a full grip or choke up on the knife. There's also a frame lock with an over-travel guard to minimize wear and tear on the lock during daily use. It's available to pre-order at the link below.


What do you think of these "pocket cleaver" style blades for EDC?

#cleavers #buying-guides #knives #cleaver-pocket-knife #folding-cleaver-knife #cleaver-blade #spring-assisted-cleaver #best-cleaver-folding-knife see all

Who Likes This (75)

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Discussion (16 total)

Kevin ·
Ripsnort now available in D2.
flip Digler ·
The Gerber is very difficult to open with your thumb. With my hands at least. As you reach for the thumb hole I had to shift my hand to get the center of my thumbprint into the hole or it would slip off and fail at opening it.or I had to two hand it. I returned it, they could of done a better job IMO
Linggawati Aditopo ·
I own barge and cuisine from the above list. I like that kizer but very expensive, kizer soon will annouce the damascus version (I have seen it in youtube)
Kaud ·
There's no such thing as "cleaver style" - every one of these is a Sheepfoot or Wharncliff blade. How are we supposed to trust your product reviews when you don't even know knife terminology?
Linggawati Aditopo ·
Cleaver and paring is such kitchen knive terminology, same as nakiri and santoku in japanese
Adrian Hillier ·
And if you knew anything at all about blade shapes and terminology, you wouldn’t make the mistake of claiming these blades are Wharncliffe or Sheepsfoot shapes. Neither of those blade styles have a flat tip, both do share a straight edge, but with either an abrupt round end, as with the Sheepsfoot, or gradual taper on the back to a sharp point as in the Wharncliffe. These knives are much closer to a straight-razor, cleaver or chisel, so far better to avoid confusion with the much different Wharncliffe or Sheepsfoot by calling them cleaver-style
Eric ·
Can't wait for the Flatiron!
Linggawati Aditopo ·
And yes, I do not think flat iron is a cleaver as it is not suitable for chopping job
demure demeanor ·
... I recall the CRKT Razel being a wood working style knife, not a cleaver...
J.S. Leonard ·
Nope, it's a Graham Knives design from there Graham Razel GMT knife. It is not or was ever a wood working knife.
Linggawati Aditopo ·
It is not the best knife to do wood working, because of ergonomic, safety, chiseling control as it is not straight. the Graham razel is more better than this crkt razel.
Sean Wolfe ·
The Kiser Sheepdog is more for sure the hands down, most bad @as of the bunch...for sure. Seriously though, for cleaver style, it's my fav (IN THIS PRICE RANGE!) It was a no brainer when I researched/bought mine.
Kordel Day ·
the Gerber Flatiron has the best looks for sure
Craig Cardimon ·
Liking the different looks and styles of these pocket knives. Might start collecting them.
Linggawati Aditopo ·
Good, keep buying, so factory can keep creative and invent new ideas.
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