Nitecore NTK05 Knife Review

Today I have in my hands a … knife… from Nitecore.  It’s an unusual device, so calling it a knife might be a bit of a misnomer, because it’s most usual use case will likely not be … knifing.  What it essentially is, is a titanium scalpel handle.  Read on for more photos and a few thoughts!


Official Specs

Here’s a link to the knife’s official page.

Versions

There’s just the one version.


Short Review

I love a tiny knife, and this is a tiny knife.  It’s very rare that I will say this, but in the case of the NTK05, I do wish there was a little more to hold on to.  This is a very slim knife.  I would love if it accepted scalpel blades other than the #11.  But overall, it’s useful for what it should do; for me, that’s opening packaging.

Long Review

Package and manual

Typical Nitecore package.  No manual is included.  I also don’t see anywhere on the package saying specifically what scalpel blade to replace this with.

Look

The look of the NTK05 is very industrial and futuristic.  Don’t forget that this thing is small, too.

When folded, …. still industrial and futuristic!

Not possible to see in the photos below, but the blade perfectly centers when folded.

Open / Close / Lock

This is essentially a slip joint knife.  Once the blade is around 1.5cm from resting, it’ll stay open at any point – there’s no half-way detent.

The knife does firmly and positively click open, and stays open until intentionally closed.

Build and Feel

There’s a certain sharpness to the whole knife here – not just the razor sharp scalpel blade.  Not a single edge is rounded or broken.  There are a bunch of pointy bits.  Every single thing on this knife is an edge.  

That’s probably not the worst thing, though, because it sort of serves as a bit of a warning about using the knife.  Also those edges do provide a bit of grip in places that wouldn’t otherwise have any grip at all.  And being that this knife is so small, any bit of grip helps.  Holding this knife isn’t unlike holding one of these, but with a bit better grip.

Size

Officially:
55mm (closed)
97mm (open)
20mm (blade length)
3mm (thick)
Weight: 4.8g

This thing is just so small!

Steel / Cut / Oats

The NTK05 uses a replaceable scalpel blade, which is usually just labeled “Stainless Steel” or “Carbon Steel.”

The cut is of course surgical.  The #11 has

an elongated triangular blade sharpened along the hypotenuse edge with a strong pointed tip making it ideal for stab incisions needed when lancing an abscess or inserting a chest drain.

So if that’s the kind of thing you’re into, then this is the knife for you.  I’m not, but I do use this knife well for opening boxes.  In that scenario, I don’t even need a blade as long as the #11, which is 20mm.  I could legitimately get by with a 4mm or so blade.

Replacing the Blade

This deserves it’s own section, because it’d be very easy to end up with a 20mm deep gash along some important part of your body if you aren’t careful swapping the blade.  The blade must be pushed from the back toward the front for removal.  I recommend using pliers or tweezers.  There’s a small divot in the back of the blade retainer for access – and it’s perfectly placed. Just grab the blade there and it comes out very willingly.  Grab it anywhere else, and basically forget about it.  The divot can be seen below, just left of the pivot.  What looks like frame is actually blade.

Putting the blade on requires slipping the blade opening over a tab.  Again, I recommend pliers.  This blade is super stabby.

Retention

There’s a keyring loop on the tail of this knife.  It’s a tiny opening… I make it 3mm x 10mm.

Conclusion

This is a fine knife if used within the scope of it’s purpose.  This scope could be fairly narrow, but for many (most?) everyday tasks, this knife will likely be perfect.  Replacement blades are cheap and easily available (100 on amazon for under $7.)

Will this replace any other knife I use?  Nah, definitely not.  But will it be a great coin pocket knife, or even a great knife for an ultralight hiker?  Yes, it’d be great for either of those things!


Notes

  • This knife was provided by Nitecore for review. I was not paid to write this review.
  • This content originally appeared at zeroair.org.  Please visit there for the best experience!

Author: zeroair

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