Gerber has taken a refreshing marketing approach with their Spine fixed blade knife. They are not telling us it is the best quality knife on the market, or even the best-priced. They are telling us the Spine is “for the weekend warrior camper or hiker” and I commend them for that honest approach. After all, it certainly isn’t the best blade I have ever wielded. What it does offer is an affordable price point, excellent grip, sturdy blade, and a very comfortable ergonomic design.

Whether you are stripping wood for kindling or cutting open an MRE, the Spine is designed for an all-around reliable camping experience. It features an oversized lanyard hole to accommodate a variety of rope sizes and carabiners. The texturized rubber grip provides excellent retention even in wet or cold conditions, and for my medium sized hands, the handle provides a comfortable amount to hold onto. The drop point blade has a functional shape for camp-related tasks and has a great looking dull finish that helps to mask general wear on the blade over time.

Gerber Spine fixed blade anatomy (courtesy of Gerber website)

  1. Drop point
  2. Fine edge 7Cr17MoV blade
  3. Raised handle grip
  4. Textured grip
  5. Lanyard hole
  6. Full tang
  7. Belt clip

Gerber Spine

The good:

  • Excellent grip retention
  • Oversized sheath clip can mount to the lumbar strap on a backpack
  • Blade design offers a fine edge angle that lends to good all-around performance for camp related tasks
  • Vibrant handle color options are easy to spot at the campsite or on the trail
  • Thumb latch on the handle makes one-handed deployment very easy

The bad:

  • Factory edge is a little uneven and not quite as sharp toward the ricasso
  • The glass-filled nylon sheath has some excess at the seams that should have been cleaned up
  • Oversized clip on the sheath not very stable when mounted on a belt – it tends to tilt front or back

Gerber Spine

The Spine is a solid addition to the packing list for any casual camping trip or hike and is easily one of the more comfortable knives I’ve ever used in this price range. It isn’t perfect but not every knife needs to be. For $40 Gerber offers a durable, functional, and comfortable fixed blade camp knife that you will be able to get plenty of use out of.

Primary features:

  • Full length: 8.4″
  • Blade length: 3.7″
  • Blade thickness: 3.25 mm (0.12″)
  • Blade material: 7Cr17MoV
  • Weight (with sheath): 6.6 oz
  • Weight (knife only): 5.2 oz
  • Full tang construction
  • Glass-filled nylon sheath w/ belt clip
  • Textured rubberized grip
  • Lanyard hole
  • Also available in Cyan color
  • $40 MSRP