5 of the Best Zero Tolerance Knives

When you’re looking for an EDC whether in emergency cases or just for your day-to-day, zero tolerance knives (ZT) are the go-to options. They’re designed for use in various situations, especially tactical or combat ones. In this guide, you’ll discover a bit more about ZT knives in addition to a quick rundown of five of the best ones on the market today.

An Introduction to Zero Tolerance Knives

First introduced to the market back in 2006, Zero Tolerance Knives are a brand of Kai USA Ltd. When they first arrived on the scene, they were geared more toward police forces, military, and other first responders such as firefighters. They were designed with tactical use in mind; those using it would be out there on the frontlines, cutting people free from the likes of cars or pulling them from other dangerous situations. On the combat-end of the spectrum, they were there for you when your gun just wouldn’t cut it.

Eventually, ZT began marketing toward EDC, prompting every day people to try out the knives for fishing or for protective carrying in a purse or pants pocket. They produce heavier knives designed for outdoor use. At the same time, they make lighter, yet sturdy blades that can be carried anywhere. No matter what they create, they always maintain the durability of the blades, using high-quality materials like G10, titanium or carbon fiber handle scales and S30V blade steel.

If you’re looking for “Made in America” blades, then Zero Tolerance Knives is your choice. These knives are all manufactured right in Tualatin, Oregon.

Top 5 Zero Tolerance Knives

5. Zero Tolerance Sinkevich Titanium Folding Knife

Zero Tolerance Sinkevich Titanium Folding Knife

Based on the award-winning 0454 zero tolerance knives, these knives are more compact than their predecessors. The new edition is lightweight, has a super sleek design and quick deployment thanks to the built-in flipper and KVT ball-bearing opening system. There may be some irritation though when first deploying as the slightest pressure on the lock bar can prevent it from opening.

Other than that, there’s high-praise for this knife. The S3VN stainless steel blade can easily be re-sharpened, and it holds a razor edge well.

Key features include:

  • Opening: Manual, KVT ball-bearing system.
  • Overall Length: 7.4-in. (18.8 cm).
  • Blade Length: 3.25-in. (8.25 cm).
  • Closed Length: 4.1-in. (10.4 cm).
  • Blade Material: Steel, S3VN, Stonewashed & Satin Finish.
  • Handle Material: Titanium, Stonewashed Finish.
  • Weight: 2.9 oz (82.2 g).

4. Zero Tolerance G10 Handle w/ Speed Safe Knife

Zero Tolerance G10 Handle with Speed Safe

Fully equipped with SpeedSafe® for use with one-handed assisted opening, you can deploy this blade with ease even with combat gloves on. The ergonomic, textured handle gives you an overall sturdier grip.

The flip action can be a bit slow due to the weight, but if you’re not looking for anything fast-engaging, then this is perfect for you. It’s great for versatile use from on-the-job or just out hunting. The clip system is excellent; carry it left or right-handed with the tip up or down.

Key features include:

  • Opening: Assisted, Ambidextrous Flipper.
  • Overall Length: 7.62-in. (19.4 cm).
  • Blade Length: 3.25-in. (8.25 cm).
  • Closed Length: 4.62-in. (11.7 cm).
  • Blade Material: Steel, S30V, Tungsten DLC Black Coating.
  • Handle Material: Textured, Matte-Black G10 Scales.
  • Weight: 6.2 oz (175.8 g).

3. Zero Tolerance 0350BW BlackWash Hinderer Flipper Knife

Zero Tolerance 0350BW BlackWash Hinderer Flipper Knife

One of the more popular zero tolerance knives got an updated design, a BlackWash finish. Now, your blade has a distinct, battle-tested appearance. This is more than artificial though; this finish helps reduce friction.

The quad-mount system gives it greater carrying versatility. With the G10 handle, you get a better, more secure grip. The liner lock is strong, and the flipper action is fast. If there are complaints, they tend to focus on the size being too intimidating for the workplace.

Key features include:

  • Opening: Assisted, Ambidextrous Flipper.
  • Overall Length: 7.75-in. (19.7 cm).
  • Blade Length: 3.25-in. (8.25 cm).
  • Closed Length: 4.6-in. (11.7 cm).
  • Blade Material: Steel, Tungsten DLC BlackWash Finish.
  • Handle Material: Textured G10.
  • Weight: 5.6 oz (158.8 g).

2. Zero Tolerance 0450CF Sinkevich Carbon Fiber KVT Knife

Zero Tolerance 0450CF Sinkevich Carbon Fiber KVT Knife

This is a smaller option in the ZT family, but it’s nonetheless as sturdy as they come. With the front handle scale being carbon fiber, it counteracts the knife’s solid construction to give the blade an overall well-balanced feel.

The flipper allows it to open with such little effort that it can be mistaken for an assisted opening. Even so, it’s retained well to prevent from any accidental openings. The pocket clip can seem a bit large, more so in comparison to the blade size.

Key features include:

  • Opening: Manual, KVT ball-bearing system.
  • Overall Length: 7.4-in. (18.8 cm).
  • Blade Length: 3.25-in. (8.25 cm).
  • Closed Length: 4.1-in. (10.4 cm).
  • Blade Material: Steel, S35VN DLC Coating.
  • Handle Material: Carbon Fiber (front), Titanium (back).
  • Weight: 2.7 oz (76.5 g).

1. Zero Tolerance ZT0350TS Tiger Striped Blade Knife

Zero Tolerance ZT0350TS Tiger Striped Blade

10% smaller than the 0300, the Tiger Stripe 0350 is equipped with SpeedSafe® for easier, safer opening no matter the situation you’re in. This new and improved edition comes with a non-serrated blade that is non-reflective and reduces friction drag.

It may be too heavy for an EDC for some people, but nevertheless, the knife receives glowing reviews. The handle is simple to grip and control; even in a reverse-style grip, your hand should fit flawlessly. With its design, it easily stands out against other tactical knives. It opens easy and locks up tight. It’s an overall great ZT knife.

Key features include:

  • Opening: Assisted, Ambidextrous.
  • Overall Length: 7.75-in. (19.7 cm).
  • Blade Length: 3.25-in. (8.25 cm).
  • Closed Length: 4.625-in. (11.7 cm).
  • Blade Material: Steel, S30V Tungsten DLC Tiger Stripe Coating.
  • Handle Material: Textured Matte-Black G10.
  • Weight: 5.6 oz (158.8 g).

Summing Up

Zero Tolerance Knives are some of the most versatile and durable EDC knives on the market. These top five have been well-received by users for their impressive features from easy-openings, secure locking and grips, to razor-sharp edges. If there are other zero tolerance knives you don’t see on our list and feel deserve to be there, let us know in the comments.

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