The Smallest Knives – Some Itty Bitty Blades for the Tiniest Tasks

Maybe you want to carry a knife but most of them are too big to carry in your pocket. Maybe you’re a fan of tiny things and are curious as to just how small a blade can get. Whatever the case, you’re probably wondering how small a knife can get. Well, to answer that question, as small as you can imagine. 

The problem here is that there’s a balance between size and usefulness—if you made a knife small enough to hide under a dime, you’d be lucky to cut a piece of thread with that thing. 

Imagine trying to open a folding knife an inch long. You’d probably drop the thing ten times before deploying the blade. Then you’d probably break the thing trying to cut a piece of cardboard. On top of all these problems, small knives are usually made with simple metals that make the knife that much less potent.

But enough negativity—tiny knives are still cool and an easy addition to any everyday carry, despite how niche their application may be. I mean, having a miniature version of something is just awesome, especially if it’s still functional. That said, get ready for some of the smallest knives that aren’t completely useless.

Spyderco Bug

SIZE
WEIGHT

This is your typical Spyderco knife except it’s almost small enough to hide behind a quarter. It doesn’t have any locking mechanism and is instead held open by the friction of the slip joint, which makes sense given its size. The blade metal is a common stainless steel that gets the job done but definitely wouldn’t last if you needed to cut a thick piece of rope or anything of the like.

Most of the complaints about this knife are that it’s so small, it’s not even useful. It’s the smallest knife in the Spyderco “bug” series (next to the “Honeybee” and the “Grasshopper”), so what would you really expect? It’s also been reported being fairly dull, but a good sharpening could easily fix that. Maybe it has its limitations and borders on being a simple novelty, but if you think you can handle this itty-bitty knife, it would be well worth keeping in your pockets.

Overall Length:
Closed Length:
Blade Material:
Handle Material:
Weight:

2.9 inches
1.6 inches
3Cr13 steel
stainless steel
0.4 ounces

Old Timer 1OT

Size
WEIGHT

Don’t be fooled by this knife’s simple look—beneath the classic design and rustic colors is a blade that even cardboard itself would fear. This knife is a bit of a shock compared to all the modern-looking knives out there; it also appears less threatening, especially with its drop-point blade, which is good if you’re trying to avoid unwanted attention.

The blade material is as basic as it comes, as is the case with almost any small knife. It features a metal band at the end of the handle in case you want to attach it to a keychain or stick it on a hook. It also apparently comes with a sheath but it seems like the knife would be too small for it to be useful. If you want a tool that looks inconspicuous and rustic and don’t want to pay much for it, then the Old Timer just might be for you.

Overall Length:
Closed Length:
Blade Material:
Handle Material:
Weight:

3.8 inches
2.2 inches
7Cr17 steel
Delrin acetal resin
0.9 ounces

Kershaw Chive

Size
Weight

Not only can this one open packages, but it can also break down cardboard boxes. That might be hard to believe, but I couldn’t make that up. Basically, all your cutting worries are over. Of course, as much as I’m joking, this knife probably packs the most punch out of all the ones on this list.

The blade itself is made from a durable, corrosion-resistant steel and is fixed on a metal handle with SpeedSafe technology for fast, single-handed deployment. Although the metal handle means more durability, it also makes it heat-conductive, so it would be best for indoor use. Given its size, its price, and the fact that is has a clip, the Kershaw Chive is definitely on high end of the quality scale, which is perfect for those who don’t want to compromise too much for a tiny blade.

Overall Length:
Closed Length:
Blade Material:
Handle Material:
Weight:

4.9 inches
3.0 inches
420HC steel
stainless steel
1.7 ounces

Spyderco Dog Tag

Size
Weight

There’s a reason they call this knife the Dog Tag—if you replaced Fido’s name badge with this thing, no one would be able to tell the difference. It’s extremely slim and the lightest blade on this list, so if you put it in your pocket, you’d forget it was even there. It is still a bit strange-looking, though.

This knife might seem like a bit of a joke with its one-inch sheepsfoot blade and awkward handle, but it’s made of premium materials and is actually the most expensive knife on this list. The blade metal will definitely hold up against usual wear and stay sharp for a long time. It’s also held open by spring pressure on a slip-joint pivot, so that means it doesn’t lock. Be sure to give this one a try if you don’t mind the unorthodox design and want something as light as air.

Overall Length:
Closed Length:
Blade Material:
Handle Material:
Weight:

3.2 inches
2.0 inches
CPM-S30V steel
carbon fiber
0.3 ounces

Bear & Son 540 Folding Knife

Size
Weight

Although it might look a little primitive, this knife’s simplicity is hard to argue with. The handle is made from stag bone, so that’s why the handle looks strange. It’s even made in the US by Bear & Son, a family company dedicated to making tools with traditional craftsmanship.

The handle has a contoured shape to give it more grip (because bone isn’t that grippy). It also sports a nickel silver bolster for extra support and style. If you want a knife that’s really one of a kind, then don’t hesitate to give this a good try.

Overall Length:
Closed Length:
Blade Material:
Handle Material:
Weight:

4.7 inches
2.5 inches
stainless steel
stag bone
0.9 ounces

Gerber Paraframe

Size
Weight

Someone must have been really desperate for steel if they ended up cutting it out of their own knives. I have to admit, though, this knife looks pretty cool despite the holes in the handle (well, maybe that makes it cooler). Anyways, the Gerber Paraframe is sure to come through in a pinch whether you like how it looks or not.

It’s made from very basic stainless steel, so don’t count on much in that department. However, it is the cheapest knife on this list, so it’s not really fair to complain about what it’s made of. It does seem to have a bit of trouble closing, though, so be sure to keep that in mind with regard to potential injuries. I’d say that this knife is perfect for anybody who’s hesitant to invest a lot into a tool, especially if you’re just testing the waters. If you’re looking for something that’s cheap, this is the one for you.

Overall Length:
Closed Length:
Blade Material:
Handle Material:
Weight:

5.3 inches
3.1 inches
stainless steel
stainless steel
1.4 ounces

Maxeri Folding Knife

Size
Weight

This knife boasts the title of the “world’s smallest all-purpose pocket knife,” but it’s 2 inches long when closed whereas the Spyderco Bug is only 1.6 inches. Already we have a problem here. But that doesn’t rule out Mr. Maxeri because it’s still a handy knife and has a nice design.

The blade has a combination edge with both serrated and flat sections, which is a little strange seeing how small it is. It also has a keychain hole that’s probably too small for anything bigger than your average keyring. The Maxeri may not be the smallest knife out there, but it’s definitely a great pick for anyone who wants a subtle, minimalist blade with an average budget.

Overall Length:
Closed Length:
Blade Material:
Handle Material:
Weight:

3.1 inches
2.0 inches
3Cr13 steel
stainless steel
0.8 ounces

CRKT Delilah’s P.E.C.K.

Size
Weight

The first thing you might notice about this knife is the fact that the blade will never be completely enclosed in the handle. Although it rests flush against the metal, the edge is technically still exposed. However, that does make for super convenient, one-hand deployment because you don’t have to fish for a little notch in the spine of the blade, which can be frustrating.

Once again, this knife is made with a very mediocre steel, but is still good for general purposes. It’s also a sheepsfoot blade, which makes it a bit less universal, but is great for precision cuts. This knife is very simple and bare-boned, but given its outstanding functionality, that’s more of a compliment than anything. If you want a knife that isn’t more complicated than it needs to be, then be sure to give this one a shot.

Overall Length:
Closed Length:
Blade Material:
Handle Material:
Weight:

4.2 inches
2.6 inches
3Cr13 steel
stainless steel
0.9 ounces

Those have been some of the smallest knives you can find. There probably exist some that are smaller, but again, it is possible for a knife to be too small. But whatever the case, these tiny tools will certainly make your next letter-opening operation that much more convenient. You’ll also be able to rip open packages like a pro. Only be careful not to use the thing in a car—if you dropped it down the side of the seat, you’d never see it again.

Hopefully you found this article helpful. If you have any questions or concerns (or just want to type something), then be sure to leave a comment below and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can.

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