Gerber Vital Knife
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- Last updated: 20/09/2021
The Gerber Vital pocket knife is a superbly made, lightweight tool in a folding format that comes with six extra blades, so when the one being used becomes blunt, just remove it and replace it with a new one. The tool comes with a warranty on materials and manufacturing defects for 25 years.
The knife measures 110mm folded, 178mm open and weighs 45-grams, so it can easily fit a jacket pocket. It features a belt clip but does not come with a pouch.
The two halves of the handle sandwich the stainless-steel locking mechanism and are manufactured from glassfilled nylon and rubber. The nylon is orange in colour in case you put it down and lose it! The grip shows a central trough with the Gerber logo embossed and forms a neat hold. For extra grip, the black rubber surround is textured and there are rows of raised nylon ridges (top, back and underneath). Its format makes it very ergonomic and it’s neither right nor left hand biased.
The whole grip is held in place by cement, rivets and a pivot screw at the other end, so the blade can extend. There’s a lanyard ring located at the end but no lanyard is supplied.
The seriously sharp clip point blades are made from surgical stainless steel and measure 72mm long, 10mm high and 0.4mm thick. The overall cutting edge measures 54mm.
In a typical folding knife fashion, the blade swings down from the handle when the top locking lever is depressed. It can be opened or closed onehanded if necessary.
The actual blade is an industry-standard surgical scalpel type with a fixture hole along its rear section. This clips securely into a forward retaining clip on the knife and a rear sprung lever stops the blade from slipping off forward. This lever can be lowered by pushing down on the small sprung release button on the left/ top side of the blade holder.
Replacement blades are available in a very handy orange plastic dispenser. Simply push on the top to release a sprung loaded blade. The old one can then be safely stored in a slit through the top, brilliant! Each box holds 12 spare blades.
I particularly like this Gerber for skinning deer as the sharpness of the blade and its thin, small size are an asset to cleanly removing the hide from the meat and cuts around the pelvic joints. Rabbits too are no match for the Vital. Plus, when the blade dulls, I can just swap it out, so no more sharpening!
I would not be without this knife now as it makes my gralloching duties so much easier and safer as it effortlessly cuts without force. Being synthetic and stainless it’s biologically neutral, so won’t contaminate the meat and is very easily washed down and cleaned. Yes, a pouch would be nice and some may baulk at the cost of spare blades, but to me, it’s so cheap as I have ruined a lot of good knives in my time!