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Question by John Doe. Uploaded on February 10, 2012
Spring assisted versions can be SLIGHTLY quicker to open/close but have extra parts that can break/fail. I don't prefer them and use folders with thunb-holes in the blade for quick one-handed opening. These are made by Spyderco, Benchmade, and SOG.
Spring assisted knives are illegal in some locations - call your local police department before getting one. Speed of opening is not significantly different if you are practice a little with the unassisted knives with good thumb holes or thumb studs. Some people find spring assist knives are easier to open with one hand than an unassisted knife.
I prefer my spring assisted knives because I find them easier and faster to open than regular one handed folders. (Maybe it's because I'm clumsy and uncoordinated.) Just don't forget to put the safety on when you put them in your pocket or you will experience negative results varying from punctured cloth or skin that springs a leak and bleeds.
My spring assisted knife is too heavy and does not open significantly faster (and much noisier) than my regular folding knife (with the thumb studs). Thus, I have gone back to the standard folding knife. There can be some legalality issues with the spring assisted knife in some jurisdictions as well...
Assisteds are generally legal. There are some places that you might have an issue, but generally your ok. If you have developed the muscle memory with a good manual you can get it open as fast as an assisted, but the assist is just as good. One thing to watch out for is that assisteds tend to have just a tiny bit of wiggle at the pivot point. This can be fixed by adjusting the pivot point just a little bit. A really highend one like a benchmade won't have this issue though. Assisteds are also just plain cool. I like mine. Really theres not much advantage one way or the other in my opinion, I judge a knife more on things like steel, blade shape and grind, handle material, locking mechanism.
Nothing- unless you are about to get mugged or mauled.
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