Kershaw Lightyear Joins Starter Series

The Starter Series, Kershaw’s budget-centric line of knives, is getting a new addition: the Lightyear. This knife goes right for the EDC category and packs in a lot of old school Kershaw elements.

Kershaw has diversified a lot in recent years. Their knives range in size, price, and application now more than they once did – the company even instituted a sprint run program this year to provide more variations and material choices for its customers.

However, there was a time not that long ago when the company was very much known for a specific look: bead blasted blade, black handle, and SpeedSafe deployment. These knives were hard working and affordable, and while the budget knife scene has changed dramatically since those days, there are lots of community who were introduced to the world of knives through these foundational Kershaw releases.

The Lightyear seems to hearken back to those days: it is an in-house design that checks all of those visual boxes. Its 3.125-inch modified wharncliffe blade echoes a lot of other classic Kershaw work old and new, like the Dividend and the Packrat. As befits a knife in an accessible price point, the Lightyear’s blade is ready to go for non-specialized, everyday chores, from breaking down boxes to cutting into plastic clamshells.

The steel is 4Cr14 – a budget steel for sure, and arguably a step down from the 8Cr13MoV that used to be a common sight amongst the budget Kershaws and budget knives in general. SpeedSafe is not the nearly universal feature on Kershaw releases that it once was, but it’s here on the Lightyear: Ken Onion’s classic assisted-opening mechanism is engaged solely with a flipper tab on this one.

Kershaw devised a tapering handle for the Lightyear. It’s relatively spare, with only minor faceting to help users index their grip: no big finger grooves here. Black GFN scales are laid on steel liners front and back. The Lightyear is a liner lock, carries with a loop over clip, and weighs just 2.5 oz.

The Lightyear is available now.

Knife in Featured Image: Kershaw Lightyear