Blade Upgrade

Want a Custom Pocket Knife? Get This One Instead


Discerning pocket knife enthusiasts know that the most distinctive blades are custom-made. The jump from premium to custom is a big one though — it often requires signing on to a waitlist that lasts months (or years) and shelling out hundreds to thousands of dollars. Imagine dulling the prize of that effort with a common task like opening a cardboard box. Now imagine leaving it to gather dust on a shelf; neither option is favorable. A company called Alliance Designs has a creative solution to the problem though: it works with makers to produce custom designs at mass scale, and its latest release is a new folding knife called the Ice Lite.

Brian Efros, an up-and-coming knife maker, created the Ice Lite. Efros’s history growing up in the Midwest and living in Colorado leads him to seek out tough, high-end materials. You’d expect his designs to be tool-oriented and tactical, but they’re clean, refined and well-suited to contemporary everyday carry trends.

Efros and Alliance made the production Ice Lite with premium RWL-34 steel in a shape that’s best described as a straight back (characterized by a straight spine and an edge that curves up to meet it at the tip). That shape gives the Ice Lite a gradual, full belly ideal for slicing and a fine point for precision jobs. The 2.9-inch blade deploys with dual thumb studs, which makes it ambidextrous, and uses a frame lock integrated into its titanium handles for security. All of these details make for a high-quality and unique pocket knife that you won’t be too afraid to use.

Gear Patrol also recommends:
Gerber Fastball ($100)
The James Brand Chapter ($295)
Chris Reeve Knives Impinda ($450)
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Tanner Bowden is a staff writer at Gear Patrol covering all things outdoors and fitness. He is a graduate of the National Outdoor Leadership School and a former wilderness educator. He lives in Brooklyn but will always identify as a Vermonter.

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