The Gerber StrongArm bridges the gap between military and civilian knives. Lighter than most military knives the StrongArm is still knife enough.
The Gerber StrongArm has been a companion in most of my adventures for the last few weeks. It has walked with me through the woods and has helped me set up tree stands and hunt (although I haven’t been that successful on the latter so far.) However, the knife has served me quite well.
Let’s Start With the Blade
Strong and sharp are the first two words that come to mind when asked to describe the Gerber StrongArm’s blade. The blade is quite capable, nice and thick, and very easy to sharpen. The finish on the blade is actually Cerakote. Real, licensed Cerakote. This is a nice touch as Cerakote has a proven record for strength and durability. It hasn’t flaked or scratched under my watch.
The blade itself is made out of 420HC steel. This makes the knife durable and allows it to sharpen easily. At the same time, it helps keep the rust away from that precious blade.
The blade measures 4.8 inches while the knife’s overall length stands at 9.8 inches. Gerber also makes a variant featuring a serrated edge if you know you’ll be using it primarily for cutting.
The Gerber StrongArm has a full tang blade that ends with a striking pommel. The pommel is also cut for a lanyard which is a nice touch. The pommel is quite strong, although I don’t keep glass around the house to break. However, I did strike the poles in my barn several times, and it dug in deep and hard. What’s also nice is that my hand never slipped during these blows. Which leads me to the grip.
The Gerber StrongArm Grip
The grip of the Gerber StrongArm is soft and rubberized and fills the hand nicely. This certainly aids in preventing fatigue during heavy and frequent use. And your hand will definitely thank you afterward.
The grip is also textured with rubber diamonds to make sure there aren’t any slips or failures. Undoubtedly, the grip is certainly a high point of the overall knife. It’s quite comfortable and makes it easy to do hard work with the knife over an extended period of time.
Gerber StrongArm’s handle is made out of glass-filled nylon providing it with durability befitting this rugged beauty.
Ow, and it comes in two colors: Coyote Brown (the one I own and is pictured on the photo above) and Black, for the more modern types out there.
The Gerber StrongArm Sheath
As we covered in the first look, the sheath is what really helps set this knife apart. It’s incredibly modular and easy to carry. Strap it to your belt, backpack, or plate carrier. Its ease of carry is helped by the fact that it only weighs 7.2 oz.
Nevertheless, carrying it concealed is difficult and uncomfortable for me as this is a big knife, so you have to carry it horizontally. The only place I could conceal it was in my bag. This made it uncomfortable to you know sit down. Plus, I would be afraid of being knocked backward on it and hurting my lower back permanently.
The sheath is extremely well made and is kydex. It has holes for lashing is necessary, and a slot for a strap to secure it to the thigh. It uses a passive retention system and when carried MOLLE or on the belt has a thumb-snap retention device. Furthermore, it features two panels that allow the user to push off the weapon out of the sheath when carried horizontally.
Well, Should You Get One or Not?
The Gerber StrongArm knife has a lot of pros going for it. Firstly, and most importantly, it is well made and will get the job done. It is also versatile and easy to carry. If that wasn’t enough, it is made in America, so buying it supports American families. After all, Gerber is truly an American tradition when it comes to knives.
As for cons, it really only has one: You cannot easily carry it around concealed. Horizontal conceal carry is possible, but it’s not the most comfortable with this particular bad boy.
Other than that there isn’t anything to detract from the StrongArm. It is a very good knife and bridges the gap between military and civilian knives nicely.
So, if you value utility and craftmanship and don’t mind the slight inconvenience experienced when carrying it around concealed then the Gerber StrongArm should be added to your collection. Better yet, it should be your number two (or three if you’re traveling with a special someone) in your next wilderness adventure.
If you are interested, you can purchase the knife using the link below.
This article was originally published in July 2017. It has been edited for republication.