Maybe you noticed, but I’ve been on a slipjoint kick lately — they are very subdued feeling to those around you when you are going into places like offices. Anyways, carrying on with my quest to find great slipjoints, I snagged an Ace Farley Slipjoint with green canvas micarta second hand. I’m impressed, this is a very good slipjoint knife — it’s also a very good knife in general.
Materials & Steel
First up, this is an M390 blade with a satin finish. The scales are green canvas micarta (they have other options), and it clips into your pocket with a nice steel wire clip which is reversible. The package is a really nicely proportioned 2.75” blade, with a handle length at just a touch over 3.6” — it’s compact and at 2oz, not overly heavy.
It has dual nail nicks on either side of the blade, a strong detent, and a half stop as well. You know when the knife is open, and it feels very solid. The back of the blade, the liners, and the backspacer, is all eased/rolled on the edges. The finishing on this knife is punching far above the price point.
Cut & Carry
The texture on the scales is less smooth than on most micarta I have used, with an almost fuzzy nature to it. That offers a great tactile response when handling the knife, and makes it feel grippier than it would otherwise. The shaping on the handle is also top notch and very comfortable — offering a three finger grip for me. When using this to slice through boxes and cordage, the handle was supremely comfortbale and never caused hot spots.
The blade shape is drop point, with a very fine edge and a full-flat ground blade design. It slices extremely well, without feeling weak at any point. Even the tip feels nicely thick — something I appreciate when working with a steel like M390.
The only drawback here is that this knife collects tape gunk at a rate only seen normally in Swiss Army knives. I’ve had to clean this knife blade off more than any other knife I own, and I am frankly not sure why. I find this very odd and suspect the finishing on the blade is the culprit.
In pocket, it carries fantastically well. The micarta scales help to keep the knife attached to whatever you clip it to. The wire clip is well done, and easy to flip from side to side. For how large the knife feels in my hand, it carries lighter and smaller than you would think.
The handle, and blade shape are essentially perfect for what I am looking for in a knife like this. Easily making quick work of boxes, or lending itself well to other random tasks. It’s not a heavy/hard use knife, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it held up there too.
The only downside, is that I find it hard to open the blade. I have to pinch the blade between my thumb and index finger to open it, using the nail nicks makes my nails feel like they will rip off or break before the blade opens. Because of that, I don’t use the knife as readily as I do some others I would carry in my pocket — which is a substantial downside for me. That said, the benefit here is that there is little worry of the blade opening on it’s own, and it should stay open under most common uses.
This is a completely solid, with a good value proposition — punching far above the price class with the fit and finish of the materials used. I am not convinced where it fits in my lineup of knives though. It doesn’t carry that much smaller than my locking blades, and is substantially harder to open. It gets covered in goo quick as well.
That said, I do grab it a lot more than I expected, as the blade shape and design is a joy to use. This is a hard one for me, so all I can confidently say is that it is a under priced, maybe grab one before they realize that.
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