Pros: Lock Type, Handle Material, Blade Sharpness, Blade Material, Ease of Opening, Handle Feel, Weight, Lock Ease of Use, Overall Quality
Cons: Weight, None
Lived with this knife for over 6 months
I've carried this knife EDC ever since my best mate gave it to me as a wedding engagement gift (how's that for a mate, seriously). I've never owned a ZT before, so this has been very interesting for me. The long and the short of it is the steel S35VN is only comparable in quality to my Spyderco Paramilitary 2 CPM S30V - I'm sure the more refined users can tell the bigger differences between the steels, but for me, using these premium steels mean SERIOUSLY sharp blades that hold their edge. I think I can discern that this knife is harder to sharpen than the PM2, but it's tough as nail. Aside from the the steel, it's not a light knife - but that plays into personal preference as to whether that is a pro or con. I prefer to view this knife as more of a 'tank' - it feels SOLID. What prompted me to write this review was that I was in a situation today (really long story) but I was having to remove some wood from floorboards at my investment property. The Stanley knife wasn't cutting it (lol), the blades were snapping - so I deployed the ZT sharpened on a Worksharp Ken Onion (more on this below) and it just SMASHED the task. I had to use the knife in a hacking manner - and that's the thing, no movement at all between the blade and the handle.. I'm genuinely shocked at how solid the lock up is on this. It's like a fixed blade. Weight: it helped me in this situation, but it is a heavy knife compared to a PM2. I've never lamented carrying it due to the weight, but that's the thing - depends on what you want or need. I prefer to carry a tank because it will do what it should 100% without fail, whereas a lighter blade (PM2) does not deploy as dependably, has flex (albeit minor) in the lockup and also the handle and will not protect your hand slipping forward like this knife will. Moving on: because the hilt protrudes into the blade, I find the edge hard to sharpen all the way back (to the closest point to your hand) due to this protrusion. I'm happy I can get almost to the hilt, but I'm missing about 4mm (0.16"). Not a deal breaker, but not perfect. I love this blade - it's a fiercely dependable deploy-able blade that has ZERO flex when griping strongly and the index finger is very well protected from slipping if the knife had to be used in an aggressive manner. It's built like a tank and the tip from factory is stiletto sharp.