In daily life and for most any adventure in the great outdoors, a quality knife is considered an essential piece of gear. But many people have difficulty deciding what brand or model of knife will work best for them. There are many fine makers of knives in today’s market with a range of price ranges, so finding a blend of good value, good materials, and durability can be tough.

As many of you have read, I tend to place a lot of emphasis on things that are made by American-owned companies, are tough, simple, and come with a lifetime warranty. The SOG ZOOM Mini folding knife meets all those requirements and more.

Model: ZM-1012CP

Style of knife: Folding, assisted opening

Blade length: 3.5″

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Overall length: Open 8.3″ / closed 4.15″

Type of blade: Non-serrated, drop-point style

Blade material/handle material: Blade is AUS-8 stainless steel. Handle is made up of aluminum panels.

Hardness: RC 56-58 on Rockwell Hardness Scale

Weight: 4.4 ounces

MSRP: $109.00

Unique features: This particular model allows the user to switch which side the pocket clip sits on, which may be desirable to some users. The blackened stainless-steel blade is extremely durable. Patented SOG Assisted Technology (S.A.T.) allows for fast opening of the knife with just a flick of the thumb.

Pros:

  • Lifetime warranty
  • Stainless-steel, non-serrated blade
  • Lightweight
  • Easy to sharpen

Cons: The only drawback to this model is the extremely small and awkward-to-actuate blade lock. The blade lock (pictured below) prevents the blade from being released accidentally.

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Bottom line: As of this writing, I have had the Zoom 1012CP in the field for just over two days, but it has performed like any knife should. It comes extremely sharp, which is a wonderful change from lesser knives I have owned. I intend to use it at my daily job, so it will be well used in the coming weeks and months.

The only downside to this knife that I’ve found so far is its locking mechanism—it leaves something to be desired. Some people may just leave the lever in the unlocked position. I understand the legal ramifications of including a locking mechanism on the knife, but I just don’t like it.

That being said, I do enjoy the knife so far. It carries on the tradition of quality knifes that SOG has designed and manufactured. If you are interested in other SOG products, check out any of Scott Witner’s articles on the SOG Tomahawk, SOG Bowie 2.0 fixed blade, or the SOG Kiku Divers Knife.

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