How tough are they?

Discussion in 'Opinel Users Group' started by tarzan, Jan 1, 2018.

  1. tarzan

    tarzan Supporter Supporter

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    I wanted to ask how hard can you push your knives? I have a #6 Stainless and. #8 garden stainless that I like for small jobs, but I wanted to ask how well they will hold up for tougher jobs, not abuse. I have read a few threads here, would just a pen Opinel and a medium fixed blade meet your camping needs? Not batoning just car camping, hiking or around the camp site. Thanks for your ideas.
     
  2. DarrylM

    DarrylM Supporter Supporter

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    I consider the Opinel to be a utility slicer. Based on the full flat grind and relatively light blade material and taper toward the tip. All of which add up to great kitchen use. It has a square finished spine, suitable for firesteel use. I expect it to whittle and carve well enough for hand held usage. And to have a flexible enough tip to slip into joints for moderate game processing. If, the Opinel was my only firewood processing tool, it's first task would be to whittle some wedges for the actual splitting work. Twigs and curls should be no problem once the heavier tasks are completed.

    Beyond that, the hinge is the weak point. And, as such, I would personally rate the Opinel slightly below the original Mora knives for general toughness. But consider both as very High Value knives.
     
  3. jswi2374

    jswi2374 Woods Bum Supporter Bushclass I

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    I would feel better with an Opinel and a folding saw. Saws are pretty handy for bigger jobs.
     
  4. Biker Bushcraft

    Biker Bushcraft Scout

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    I have broken a few knives over the years. Mostly Sharp and Buck folders. My Mora's earn their keep and seem to hold up fine. I baton my knives allot. I also chop with them allot and have had no issues. My Mora Companion has fallen off the bike twice now at freeway speed and suffered nothing more than a scraped handle (That happened because a van ran over it the last time). My OKC has been used for chopping almost as much as my axe. It has never broken and the tip has held up well.
     
  5. mtnoutdoors

    mtnoutdoors Prov 27:17 Supporter

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    When I did go to the woods I try and I sometimes do bush my knifes to the max but it's hard to say what knife will hold up to what someone can push thereally knife to. And it's also your skill level as well. That's what I think.
    Prov 27 : 17 20171219_193755-1.jpg
     
  6. tarzan

    tarzan Supporter Supporter

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    Thanks, keep the ideas rolling. I also agree that it also has a lot to do with your skill set.
     
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  7. Beach Hiker

    Beach Hiker Traveller Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    I have used my Opinels pretty hatd. Even batoning with them (there's a thread here with a photo...).
    They are also excellent carvers.
    But if the chips were down, for me it would always be a fixed blade. But for an easy weekend of tent camping? No problem with an Opi.
     
  8. Skeptiksks

    Skeptiksks Green Haired Weirdo Supporter

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    The opinel is an excellent slicer, but I have had issues with chipping and rolling in harder tasks.

    I'm gonna guess that it is the very fine edge I put on mine. I use it on for straight cuts and slicing only now because I am tired of working chips and rolling out. Perhaps with a different style edge put on it it would be more durable, but for me, I save the opi for cooking and straight cuts.
     
  9. S.Decker

    S.Decker Guide

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    My no.8 is my small game, camp cooking, and general light duty knife. I've got better things for the heavy work.
     
  10. TheWhiteWoodsman

    TheWhiteWoodsman Scout

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    I would say a #6 or #8 along with a med fixed blade would be more than enough for general car camping uses. I find I hardly touch my Mora when I have both on me.
     
  11. tarzan

    tarzan Supporter Supporter

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    Thanks everyone.
     
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  12. BushBum

    BushBum Guide

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    My opis have handled anything i can throw at them. Just about any bushcrafting task including modest battonin just be carefull with the point when twisting or prying while carving. All that beimg said... its no Mora lol
     
  13. jswi2374

    jswi2374 Woods Bum Supporter Bushclass I

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    .
     
    Last edited: Feb 18, 2019
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  14. S.Decker

    S.Decker Guide

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    As I watched that video, I was secretly hoping he'd slice himself open, or miss, and stab himself in the foot.
     
  15. TWill

    TWill Guide

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    I have been cutting ceiling tile by the multiple dozens for the last couple of weekends with my no.8 and it is so much better than a utility knife for getting a good line cut. A quick realigning of the edge on a steel or coffee mug bottom and I am back in business with a razor edge. I got this knife over 8 years ago and have not hesitated to take it everywhere here around home from work to hunting, fishing and traveling including Paraguay, Honduras and Mexico doing construction and lunch time fruit slicing. Perfect size and so easy to work the edge back to slicey in just a minute or so with any unglazed ceramic edge or car window edge. Plus if I lose or break it $15 bucks brings me another.
     
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  16. PeterPNL

    PeterPNL Tracker

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    I have broken a no.7 carbon when trying to straighten the blade that was slightly bend from the factory. The force one needs to break it is far more then normal or heavy use.
     
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  17. hdlv

    hdlv Treen Machine Supporter

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    About all the action my pocket knives usually see is non meat food prep, foraging, small whittling tasks, cutting rope or string, opening boxes n' things and fire steel scraping . For those tasks an opinel #6 is more than capable. I'm always carful to distinguish folder vs fixed blade jobs. Once I took off a nice chunk of my finger tip using a folder for a fixed blade job, I hope not make that mistake again.
    In your question you ask if it would be a reliable companion to a medium fixed blade, the answer is absolutely yes. IMO
     
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  18. PeterPNL

    PeterPNL Tracker

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    A question for the carbon blade: if given hard use/abuse, will it chip or roll?
     
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  19. jswi2374

    jswi2374 Woods Bum Supporter Bushclass I

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    Sadly, yes. The flat, or nearly flat, grind and thin blade make rolling and chipping more likely. Many people put a micro bevel on theirs to help prevent this.
    Pair one up with a good medium fixed blade knife (like a Mora Companion) and you're good!
    It's good to remember that in France, the Opinel is considered a cheap general purpose knife. It's used for cutting food for picnics, trimming string, opening packages, etc. They aren't really made to be bushcrafting knives. I call mine a light duty and food prep blade and let my other knives do the heavier work.
     
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  20. PeterPNL

    PeterPNL Tracker

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    O sorry, I will try to be more clear in my question. I know it will damage, but will it roll or will it chip? What is more likely to happen? If it rolls it is easily fixed, but if it chips it needs a reprofile.
     
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2018
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  21. jswi2374

    jswi2374 Woods Bum Supporter Bushclass I

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    I don't know. I try to abuse my Mora and treat the opinel's gently. Never had either problem cutting potatoes and onions.
     
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  22. Stags Crest

    Stags Crest Crafty McBushcraft Supporter

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    I have had my No.7 for years and have abused the crap out of it. And I don't mean just daily use. I've batoned it and dropped it off of buildings, used it for hours in salt water conditions and even had it stepped on by a cow! They are incredibly tough for what you pay. One of the reasons I am a huge fan of the brand is how relatively inexpensive they are so replacing one you take past the breaking point won't break the bank.
     
  23. Ryder

    Ryder Tracker

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    I find them tough enough for a good slicing/cutting knife that is comfortable in hand with hard cutting pressure like slicing curls out of seasoned mesquite or acacia. No edge damage when doing that. It is a bit harder to get the wire edge off of the stainless but when accomplished I do not have any rolling and nary a chip if I don’t stress it laterally.

    One of my Opinels did look like blade warp when new but it turned out to be handle warp instead. An overnight soak in teak oil took out the warp naturally with not other steps and it is arrow straight to this day.

    They take everything I can throw at them and I have a lot of confidence when carry only an Opinel into the backcountry.
     
  24. batmanacw

    batmanacw Bushmaster

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    They ain't weak.
     
  25. House of Horst

    House of Horst Have knife, will travel Supporter

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    I use my No.6 at home for darn near everything - from cutting up my meat, potatoes, and veggies on our ceramic plates regularly for evening meals up to and including having de-boned an entire pork shoulder. It's only ever needed some light high-grit sandpaper stropping or a re-hone from a slightly rolled edge. Never chipped, even when de-boning that shoulder.
     
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