BEST NEW MANUAL FOLDER 2016: Meet the Contenders

Presented by: Work Sharp Knife & Tool Sharpeners

The KnifeNews Dealers’ Choice Awards recognize extraordinary achievement in the production knife world. KnifeNews turned to knife dealers to determine the winners. With hundreds of new production knives passing through their hands and many hours spent interacting with end-users, dealers have the most comprehensive and informed perspective. 21 of North America’s top dealers cast their votes in 10 different categories to choose the best of the best in 2016.

Best New Manual Folder 2016
It’s no secret that more manual opening folders are made and sold than any other type of knife in the industry. And 2016 was one of the most competitive years, with dozens of new models coming onto the market. Dealers had to consider knives in a wide variety of styles, sizes, and price points as they cast their vote for the Best New Manual Folder of 2016.

In alphabetical order, here are the five new manual folders that garnered the most votes. Visit tomorrow to find out which one is taking home the KnifeNews Dealers’ Choice Award for Best New Manual Folder 2016.

Benchmade Crooked River
Benchmade united classic outdoor style with modern materials and machining to create their biggest hit of the year. This rugged beauty works equally well as a high-end hunting knife and a large EDC. The Crooked River is a must have for any serious Benchmade fan.

Benchmade Crooked River

Chris Reeve Knives Small Inkosi
All of CRK’s manufacturing prowess was brought to bear on the Inkosi. This little knife packs a lot of innovation into a small package, including the CRK specialty Large Hollow Grind and a brand new pivot and washer setup.

Chris Reeve Knives Small Inkosi

Kizer Gemini
Kizer was first out of the gates this year with the Ray Laconico-designed Gemini. It set a high bar for 2016 with high-end materials, faultless fit and finish, and a glass-smooth flipping action.

Kizer Gemini

Spyderco Bradley 2
The Spyderco Gayle Bradley, one of the great workhorses in their catalog, was given a thoughtful overhaul this year with the Bradley 2. A thinner handle and revised blade shape result in a more elegant knife with the same great performance as the original – all at a mid-market price.

Spyderco Gayle Bradley 2

Zero Tolerance 0456
Dmitry Sinkevich tried something totally different with the 0456. Known for the slim elegance of his previous ZT collaborations, the Belarusian maker went big, bold, and tanky on this flipper. ZT brought his characterful design to life with some of their most intricate machine work to date.

Zero Tolerance 0456


Best New Tactical Fixed Blade:
Top 4 Contenders
CRKT Clever Girl (WINNER)
Friday, November 11th

Best New Outdoor Fixed Blade:
Top 4 Contenders
Mora Garberg (WINNER)
Saturday, November 12th

Best New Fixed Blade for EDC:
Top 4 Contenders
Sunday, November 13th

Best Knife Upgrade:
Top 5 Contenders
Benchmade G-10 Griptilian (WINNER)
Monday, November 14th

Best New Automatic Knife:
Top 4 Contenders
Kershaw Launch 6 (WINNER)
Tuesday, November 15th

Best New Assisted-Opening Folder:
Top 4 Contenders
Benchmade 490 Amicus (WINNER)
Wednesday, November 16th

Best New Value Folder (MSRP under $100):
Top 4 Contenders
Cold Steel Pro-Lite (WINNER)
Thursday, November 17th

Best New Manual Folder:
Top 5 Contenders
Zero Tolerance 0456 (WINNER)
Friday, November 18th

Most Innovative New Knife:
Top 3 Contenders
CRKT Homefront (WINNER)
Saturday, November 19th

Best Overall New for 2016 Lineup:
Top 5 Contenders

Benchmade Knife Company (WINNER)
Sunday, November 20th