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The History Automatic Knives- How They Came Into Being

Author: Jefferson Jose
by Jefferson Jose
Posted: Dec 13, 2017

In case you haven't yet decided what kind of knife to carry, let me tell you, there are several types to choose from. You can go for an ultra-reliable sheath knife, a decent-quality folding knife, or one of the latest styles of automatic knives, collectively known as switchblades, gravity blades, or out-the-front knives. You can buy your automatic knife online and avail attractive discounts from different vendors.

All automatic or mechanically opening knives come under the category of switchblades as far as the US Federal Law is concerned. Switchblades are spring-powered, and the blade deploys out from the side of the scales, just like every other folding knife. OTF knives can be spring or gravity-powered or can be opened manually, but the blade comes out straight from the front of the knife, parallel to the scales. Gravity knives do not have an automatic opening system. They are stationed by simply pointing the knife towards the ground and pressing a release button. The blade is pulled out by sheer gravity, hence the name.

OTF knives have been doing the rounds for quite some time now. The very first model of gravity knives came out in the year 1860. The first spring-powered OTF knife came out the following year. These knives were intended to be light-duty blades and were meant to be used by people who need to hold on to something while opening a folding knife. They were pretty handy back then, though not very popular among the general population.

The next feasible one-handed system was the thumb-stud, which is nothing but a raised stud near the rear spine of the blade, allowing you to open the blade by pushing on it with your thumb. The first ones were mostly after-market attachments for the Buck 110 Folding Hunter. Later, Emerson came up with a similar device known as a ‘wedge.’ Its functioning is the same as the thumb-stud, but unlike the latter, it is a flat disc, perpendicular to the blade spine. All of these came out in the 1970s. Spyderco also had the same idea in the early 1980s, but instead of a stud, or a wedge, they just made a hole in the blade for the thumb tip. They created one of the best opening-systems and one of the finest folding knives in the market that came at a budget-friendly price.

Mechanical knives, also known as automatic knives, were popular in the Hollywood movies of the 1950s, with choreographed fight sequences featuring Italian-designed switchblades. What later came to be known as 'Italian Stilettos' were actually designed mostly for sailors, to be used as an eating utensil and light-duty pocket knife.

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Author: Jefferson Jose

Jefferson Jose

Member since: Dec 05, 2017
Published articles: 16

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