The Kershaw Link is just a great looking knife. I shouldn’t really care so much about a tool’s look, but the Link is just good-looking. The Blackwash finish and gray aluminum handles give it a modern appearance. It looks great, but it doesn’t look gaudy and doesn’t leap out at you. The longer you own and carry the knife the more you begin to appreciate. It’s easy to gloss over in a case full of knives, but once it’s in your hand it’s just beautiful.
Steel: 420HC, black-oxide BlackWash™ finish
Handle: Machined aluminum
Blade length: 3.25 in. (8.4 cm)
Closed length: 4.4 in. (11.2 cm)
Overall length: 7.6 in. (19.3 cm)
Weight: 4.8 oz. (136.1 g)
The Link uses a small flipper to activate its SpeedSafe opening device. Using your index finger you simply apply a small amount of pressure and the blade flips outwards. It’s a simple and easy one-handed opening device that doesn’t complicate the knife with springs.
The Link is heavier than knives who use glass nylon, or polymer handles. The aluminum handles add a few ounces, but it’s worth it. The all metal handle is stronger and thinner. In the hand, the knife is quite comfortable. My it fills my large hands well. Like any pocket knife, your hand will start to get uncomfortable after long periods of use due to the thin grips.
The SpeedSafe thumb nub and the liner lock are all easy to reach and easy to activate. Every part of the Kershaw Link can be used with one hand. If the liner lock fails the nub to open the SpeedSafe will protect your fingers.
The blade has a nice thumb rest that’s thick and allows you to maximize control and add pressure when cutting deep.
The Link comes in two different blade types. Tanto or drop point. My model has the drop point blade, and that is my preferred blade for everyday carry knives. I find it more versatile than a Tanto blade. You have a strong point and a plenty of edge for cutting. Drop points are easy to sharpen as well.
As you can see mine also has a healthy amount of serration. This is perfect for those heavier cutting jobs and came in handy a bit later.
Now that I’m done telling you how pretty it is, let’s look at how at how the Kershaw Link actually functions. As an EDC folder, it’s been used extensively for small jobs in the last few weeks. Cutting tape, opening boxes, all that fun stuff. As you’d imagine it performed well at the little things.
While writing a snare article I had to carve a number of pieces of wood to build the snares. I also needed to carve small areas in pieces of wood, and even had to sharpen a few thick limbs to stab into the ground.
Unfortunately, over New Years I ran into some septic tank issues and had to find and dig it up. I live happily in the middle of nowhere. While looking for the tank I had to follow a pattern of a dig, probe, dig pattern to follow the pipes to the tank itself. I also needed to cut through numerous pine roots. Typically this would be the role of a bigger knife, but I was testing the Kershaw Link, and decided to use it. The blade serration came in critical here for cutting roots.
A friend helping me dig and probe used the Gerber StrongArm. Both knives cut through roots without issue, and both worked as probes when needed. The difference came in the blade finishes. Probing through dry, abrasive sand it like taking sandpaper to a knife blade.
As you can see the Blackwash finish on the Kershaw Link is pretty damn strong compared to the standard finish applied to the StrongArm.
I haven’t sharpened the Kershaw Link since I received it, and it hasn’t lost much of an edge. It still cuts through paper pretty easily. The SpeedSafe mechanism is still just as spry as day one. I mention this because I tend to fidget and I open and close the knife randomly, over and over. The liner lock is untested, but still solid. You feel the balance shift when doing smaller tasks, but it doesn’t affect control.
Overall when you consider the affordability of this knife the Kershaw Link is a well made, strong, sharp, and dependable knife. Plus it looks amazing. People say God doesn’t give with two hands, but Kershaw certainly does.
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