Opinel Knives

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fnord

Preferred Member
Dec 28, 2011
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Topeka, KS
Does anybody have a good source for these carbon bladed, beechwood handled jack of all trades knives?
Thirty years ago I ran with a cat who owned an Army Surplus store. He had racks of these Opinels for three bucks apiece.
What are the best buys out there today and who has them? I'm looking to put one in four glove boxes next to corkscrews and screwdriver kits.
Thanks!
Fnord

 

warren

Preferred Member
Sep 13, 2013
7,600
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Amazon has a good selection. I purchased my last one, 20 years ago, from a garden supply catalog. Opinel makes a bunch of different knives and the style you are probably looking for is available in many variations. I'd check their website, I believe they retail on the site. opinel-usa.com

 

petes03

Preferred Member
Jun 23, 2013
5,245
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I've never had one myself. The hardest working knife I've ever owned (and I've owned a crap load) is my CRKT M-16 Carson double locking folder. I've had it for 15 years or so and cary it almost daily. It goes to work with me every night, and is subjected to things a good knife should never have to go through! Just a little drop of oil every now and then, and a good sharpening is all I've ever had to do to it! When I bought mine I think I paid in the neighborhood of $50 or so for it, I believe they can be had for less than $30 now.

 

tbradsim1

Preferred Member
Jan 14, 2012
7,576
416
#1 on this knife, my Father used one on his shrimp nets, I have it on my desk, use it for letter opener, don't want to lose it. Warren is right about Amazon, my Fathers was not a folder, but carbon steel, he had it sharp as a razor.

 

blueeyedogre

Preferred Member
Oct 17, 2013
1,539
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There are lots of sites to order them from depending if you are in USA or Canada. Here is the site to their US branch. www.opinel-usa.com

In Canada Knifezone.ca carries them as well. I used to have a few Opis but they went but the wayside when I found a dealer for EKA knives.

 

pseudonym

New member
May 10, 2012
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They can be had for around $10 on ebay. Also I think Lee Valley carries them (at least they did a couple years ago).

 

riskybusiness

New member
Feb 13, 2014
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London, UK
I can highly recommend knifecenter.com as they have good customer service, quick shipping and a vast selection. I've ordered several knives from them.
http://www2.knifecenter.com/kc_new/store_store.html?usrsearch=opinel
What are you going to use your Opinel for? They have several different shapes, handle materials (ebony, bone,) and even some with damascus blades.
I know the Opinel #6 is popular for grafting apples in the orchard.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S241cU1azVI

 

7ach

Senior Member
Sep 10, 2013
448
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I bought one in france about 10 years ago. It was the only souvenir I bought, and I still enjoy using it to this day. They are great knives and are easy to keep sharp.

 

dochudson

Preferred Member
May 11, 2012
1,635
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these scout knives look very interesting..

does anyone know if the end could be slimmed down and used as a tamper?


 

warren

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Sep 13, 2013
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Put it on the band saw and then sand it smooth. I would be very careful so as not to expose the blade too much. And, of course, doing this will radically change the wonderful balance that the Opinels are known for.

 

captainsousie

Preferred Member
Aug 1, 2012
2,539
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I would suggest Smoky Mountain Knife Works for a place to buy these knives. They have (mostly) good and knowledgeable people working there and their return policy is good. On top of that, their prices are hard to beat. I have no affiliation with this company, I'm just a satisfied customer.

 

tjameson

Preferred Member
Jun 16, 2012
1,192
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I have a No. 9 in Carbon Steel ad I love it. I think I got it from Amazon. They are a seriously great value for the price. They come in many sizes from tiny to...now that's a knife! They can also be had in different handle materials. There are also quite a few people out their customizing these both for aesthetics and functionality.
Perfect knife for plugs or cube cutting flakes.

 

blueeyedogre

Preferred Member
Oct 17, 2013
1,539
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If you do a search for "modified opinel" there is lots of custom things you can do with these nice little knives.

 

riskybusiness

New member
Feb 13, 2014
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London, UK
does anyone know if the end could be slimmed down and used as a tamper?
I would not recommend modifying the end of a normal sized No.6, or 8 Opinel. Doing so would be unsafe, as it exposes the tip of the blade. It would be too dangerous to carry. See the photo below with the knife closed. (This knife has been modifed to have a thumb-stud, but you get the picture.) Modifying/sanding the pommel down to a tamper-width would destroy the main function of the folding knife: The blade folds into the knife handle to protect you when you carry it. Would you cut the tip off of a fixed-blade knife sheath? No, of course not.

If you bought a pinky-finger sized No.2 Opinel (this model is sometimes sold as a novelty keychain) the circumference will fit into the pipe bowl but the handle-length will be insufficient. The knife might actually get lost in the bowl! You're better off using the flat end of a builders pencil.


The solution:

Rodgers Of Sheffield Smokers Knife. This is designed for pipe smokers, is Made in England, has a nice tamper and only costs 10 quid. Good stuff.


These can be had from amazon.co.uk and smoke-king.co.uk

http://www.smoke-king.co.uk/acatalog/Rodgers-Of-Sheffield-Smokers-Knife-597.html#SID=132

 

blueeyedogre

Preferred Member
Oct 17, 2013
1,539
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Opinels have a very simple single pin design. It would be very easy to make a longer handle and tapper the end dowm to tamper size using simple hand tools. Here are a few custom Opinels guys have done up.











 

rockymtnsmoker

Senior Member
May 31, 2013
418
1
Looked online and Opinel has a line of "raw handle" knives that let you carve your own. Think a pipe knife is the best solution, though. However, I was looking for a pocket knife myself having recently lost one too an airport security check (a small Swiss Army I forgot was on my key chain) and I have an Opinel #7 in the mail. Forgot what a great deal these knives are so thanks for the reminder.

 

bryanf

Preferred Member
Jul 16, 2013
742
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I have 4 opinels, all bought in France or given to me by French in-laws. One of them is always with me on hunting trips and is great for casing out fur bearers. The handle is pretty much a dark brown from much blood staining.
My favorite are the carbon steel number 8, but I also have the largest one (forget what number) and it's huge. I got it for boar hunting, but had no luck last year. It does work great for cutting up boxes. I have a stainless number 8 that fillets fish great and I also use it to open up quail, dove, and ducks. The little number 7 is mainly used for food prep.
Great knives, razor sharp, and cheap.

 
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