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How To Choose A Knife - Five Great Case Knives Pocket Knife Patterns

Updated on February 27, 2012

 If you like traditional folding pocket knives and don’t have a fortune to spend, there are not too many companies from which you can choose.  Many good folding knife manufacturers such as Kershaw Knives, Cold Steel Knives, Spyderco, and Benchmade Knives, have oriented themselves toward the tactical knife market in recent years.  Tactical knives can be great options, but a lot of people just prefer the old-fashioned pocket knife.  Case Knives (also known as Case XX Knives) is known to be one of the top companies in the traditional pocket knife market.  A good pocket knife from Case is not cheap, but is reasonable and much more inexpensive than most other good knife companies for a good traditional pattern.  Buck Knives have some good traditional knives, but their line is limited compared to Case cutlery.  There are some quite inexpensive Chinese-made traditional knives, but the quality is not yet up to Case’s level.  If you want a good trapper, stockman, peanut, or copperhead at a decent price, there aren’t any better companies to look at than Case.

Case Knives 5 Best Patterns


The trapper is my favorite pattern from Case.  A full-size trapper has a spey blade and a clip blade, each of just over 3” in length, and is 4 1/8” closed.  This knife has about the perfect size and look for a lot of people.  One blade is often used for rough work and the other reserved for fine work where a very sharp blade is required.  If the full-size trapper is too big, there are smaller versions available.


The stockman is another awesome pattern.  Most serious traditional knife users prefer either the stockman or the trapper.  The stockman is a three-bladed knife, having a clip blade, a spey blade, and a sheepsfoot blade.  It was originally a rancher’s knife.  The stockman pattern is available in small, medium, and large sizes, but the medium and large are the most popular and useful. 


The sodbuster is a plain, stout single-bladed working knife.  There is nothing fancy about it, but if you need an inexpensive hard-use folding knife, this is a great choice.  The large size is the most practical for work at around 4 5/8” long. 


The peanut pattern is a tiny, but elegant, little pocket knife.  It is quite suitable for whittling, cutting string and small boxes, or sharpening your pencil.  It is not intended for heavy work with its small size.  If you want a small gentleman’s knife, consider the peanut.  It may also be a decent choice for a young boy’s knife, although a scout knife or slightly bigger model may fit better.


The copperhead is a two-bladed knife that is smaller than a full-size trapper or stockman, but considerably larger than the peanut. It is a good choice for a general pocket knife for the average person. The copperhead is just a neat little knife that is quite useful for almost any situation.

Most all the knives made by Case are available in carbon or stainless steel (Case's CV) and in a huge number of handle materials. Case's well-known yellow handles and stag are the most commonly seen handle materials, but there is a handle available in just about anything you might want. There are enormous numbers of variations on all these pocket knife patterns, so you should be able to find almost anything you want. Case Knives have other good patterns like the congress, whittler, doctor’s knife, and others, but for general use, nothing can beat out the knives listed above. There are other good companies that make traditional knives, but if you don’t have a fortune, as most of us don’t these days, you will hardly find a better deal than Case Knives! For further guidelines for choosing a good pocket knife, check out


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