Everyday Carry

Top 12 Best Pocket Cleaver Knives (Buyer's Guide in 2022)

Everyday Carry
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Top 12 Best Pocket Cleaver Knives (Buyer's Guide 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 will want a more utility-oriented blade. That doesn’t mean you’re stuck carrying a standard utility knife, though. The widespread emergence of cleaver-style knives for EDC gives you a much more robust set of options. This guide will explain why cleaver-style blades are suitable for EDC. We’ll also show you some of our favorite knives in this category for you to choose from.

Jump to Our Top Pocket Cleaver Knives Picks


Why Should You Carry A Pocket Cleaver Knife?

At first glance, it might seem as if it doesn’t make a difference whether you’re carrying a regular-blade knife or a pocket cleaver. Cleavers might have an advantage even over the best pocket knives.

Besides being potentially valuable for emergencies, a folding cleaver is more versatile in everyday use. Firstly, the blade shape plays a crucial role. Most people don’t use the tip that often—what we need regularly is a sharp, firm edge. And pocket cleaver knives excel in that department with their sturdy blades.

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 more significant 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.

All this considered, the right question shouldn’t be “Why carry a pocket cleaver knife?” but rather - why not?

How to Choose the Best Pocket Cleaver Knife For You

Of course, depending on a person’s preference, what’s best for them may vary, but we have a short list of things to consider when buying the best type of everyday carry cleaver knife:

  • Knife Precision
  • Handle type and grip comfort
  • Lock safety
  • Weight
  • Material
  • Size (length and width)

Best Pocket Cleaver Knives — 2022 Edition

The Best Overall Pocket Cleaver Knife: Kizer Sheepdog [Buy]

The Best Value Pocket Cleaver Knife: CRKT Pilar [Buy]

The Most Premium Pocket Cleaver Knife: Kizer Sheepdog [Buy]

The Easiest Pocket Cleaver Knife to Carry: Kershaw Pub [Buy]

The Best Pocket Cleaver Knife for Food Prep: Boker Magnum Outdoor Cuisine Knife III [Buy]


Our Top Picks for Pocket Cleaver Knives

When looking for the best pocket cleaver knife, we’ve considered only the items with truly outstanding traits. This includes the quality, durability, functionality, and, of course, the cleaver blade itself.

Gerber

Gerber Flatiron Pocket Cleaver Knife

Purchase
Key Features
Textured G-10 handle
One hand operation
Pocket clip
Specifications
Blade Steel
7Cr17MoV
Blade Length
3.8"
Weight
6.08 oz
EDC Rating


Price
$$
If you've seen our SHOT Show coverage, you'll know that the Gerber Flatiron is one of the most interesting knives due for release 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.
CRKT

CRKT Ripsnort Pocket Cleaver Knife

Purchase
Key Features
Designed by Philip Booth
Drop point shape
Fast & easy flipper
Specifications
Blade Steel
‎8Cr13MoV
Blade Length
2.831”
Weight
5.8 oz
EDC Rating


Price
$$
The Ripsnort features a beefy 2.831” cleaver-style blade with 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.
Off-Grid

Off-Grid Pocket Cleaver Knife

Purchase
Key Features
Smooth flipping action
All-weather G-10 scales
Deep carry pocket clip
Specifications
Blade Steel
Cryo AUS-8
Blade Length
2.5"
Weight
5.6 oz
EDC Rating


Price
$$
If you want a dependable option that looks great and fits snugly into your pocket, the Off Grid Knives Cleaver Assisted EDC might be just your thing. Its overall length is 7” with a blade length of 2.5”. This flipper knife features a AUS-8 steel blade, cryogenically treated for premium performance. The cleaver has a G-10 handle with a pocket clip to help it stay in place wherever you go.
Kershaw

Kershaw Static Pocket Cleaver Knife

Purchase
Key Features
KVT ball-bearing opening
One handed operation
Robust grip handle
Specifications
Blade Steel
8Cr13MoV
Blade Length
2.8"
Weight
2.89 oz
EDC Rating


Price
$
The Kershaw Static is a smooth-looking sheepsfoot blade with a sleek, no-nonsense design. The overall length of this cleaver is 6.75” while the blade length reaches a respectable 2.8”. The knife features a 8Cr13MoV stainless steel blade with a flat grind. The handle material is stainless steel as well, and the handle itself features a convenient locking mechanism that doesn’t impede the blade opening.
CRKT

CRKT Razel Pocket Cleaver Knife

Purchase
Key Features
IKBS ball bearing
Designed by Jon Graham
Lightweight
Specifications
Blade Steel
8Cr13MoV
Blade Length
3.125"
Weight
4.3 oz
EDC Rating


Price
$$
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.
CRKT

CRKT Pilar Pocket Cleaver Knife

Purchase
Key Features
Designed by Jesper Voxnaes
Ambidextrous
Classy Appearance
Specifications
Blade Steel
8Cr13MoV
Blade Length
2.4"
Weight
4.2 oz
EDC Rating


Price
$
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 wickedly sharp 2.4” flat ground cleaver-style blade that retains a slight 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.
Spyderco

Spyderco Roc Pocket Cleaver Knife

Purchase
Key Features
Textured G-10 scales
Clip point shape
Designed Serge Panchenko
Specifications
Blade Steel
VG-10
Blade Length
3.125"
Weight
4.2 oz
EDC Rating


Price
$$$
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 with a lot of precise control over the cut, even when wet.
Spyderco

Spyderco Squarehead Pocket Cleaver Knife

Purchase
Key Features
Linerlock-style mechanism
Squarehead
Aesthetic design
Specifications
Blade Steel
CPM-S30V
Blade Length
1.25"
Weight
1.08 oz
EDC Rating


Price
$$$
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 pockets or neck carry on a chain.
Kershaw

Kershaw Barge Pocket Cleaver Knife

Purchase
Key Features
Scaled and tapered handle
Straight back shape
Manual opening
Specifications
Blade Steel
8Cr12MOV
Blade Length
2.6"
Weight
1.45 oz
EDC Rating


Price
$
Cleaver-style blades tend to get used as pry bars. As folding knives, they're really not made to do that on a regular basis, no matter how solidly built. 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.
Kershaw

Kershaw Pub Pocket Cleaver Knife

Purchase
Key Features
5 functions
Sheepsfoot style blade
Scratch resistance handle
Specifications
Blade Steel
8Cr12MOV
Blade Length
1.6 oz
Weight
2.47 oz
EDC Rating


Price
$
The Pub is a compact cleaver-style utility knife designed in a 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 features an upswept plain edge and an attractive stonewashed finish. The rear of the handle also features a bottle opener for added utility.
Kizer

Kizer Sheepdog Pocket Cleaver Knife

Purchase
Key Features
Designed by Chris Conaway
Sheepsfoot shape
Pocket clip
Specifications
Blade Steel
CPM-S35VN
Blade Length
3.25"
Weight
6.17 oz
EDC Rating


Price
$$
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 for a snug fit, and the flipper acts as an additional choil to prevent your fingers from slipping towards the blade during hard use.
BOKER

BOKER Magnum Iii Pocket Cleaver Knife

Purchase
Key Features
Straight back shape
Linerlock
Lanyard hole
Specifications
Blade Steel
7Cr17MoV
Blade Length
4.75"
Weight
6.4 oz
EDC Rating


Price
$
With a blade length of 4.75” taking up nearly half of its 10.25” overall length, the Magnum Outdoor Cuisine Knife III is more than a piece of cutlery. The cleaver is made of premium 440 steel with a gorgeous rosewood handle. The blade itself opens via a thumbhole system and is held in place with a liner lock. To top it all off, this knife comes with a limited lifetime warranty.



Frequently Asked Questions

What is the point of a cleaver?

A cleaver-style blade is designed primarily for cutting and chopping instead of piercing. It’s a specialized accessory with specific uses.

What is a trunk knife used for?

A trunk knife is ideal for slicing, chopping, and cutting.

Who owns CIVIVI?

The CIVIVI brand is a part of the Chinese-based WE Knife Company.

What’s the point of a cleaver pocket knife?

A cleaver pocket knife can function much like a regular cleaver while being lightweight and easy to carry.

Are cleaver pocket knives good?

Cleaver pocket knives are excellent if used as intended.

What is the most useful pocket knife?

Different pocket knives will be handy in specific situations. Regular blades will excel in piercing and cutting, while cleavers will be best for chopping or slicing.

What is a cleaver blade good for?

Cleaver blades are great for cutting and chopping. The unique blade shape also makes them less intimidating to carry in public.


How we picked

Decades of experience and deep connections in the everyday carry industry give us a unique viewpoint on the market to inform our product recommendations. We have the depth of information for thousands of products that have come before and an extensive eye on the market to see what’s new and trending for each piece of gear. The result is a buying guide that we feel is informative and useful for EDCers of every trade, industry, and budget.

What is Everyday Carry?

Everyday Carry is both the concept of what people carry in their pockets and the process of picking out gear that thoughtfully considers what one wants or needs in their daily lives. It encompasses everything from style to preparedness to utility, meaning an entire industry full of valuable tools and essentials to choose from.

Why you should trust us

Our team has decades of combined experience in all aspects of everyday men’s essentials, from wallets to pens to bags and everything in between, and we know where to find great gear ideas that you may not come across at your local stores or when shopping online. Our expertise with the industry and familiarity in design, materials, and usability help you make more informed choices when it comes to picking up your next piece of gear.


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Discussion (2 total)

Shane Harrington ·
The fact that the CJRB Crag is not on here is a travesty!!!
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